USS Louisville (CA-28)

USS Louisville (CA-28)

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USS Louisville (CA-28)

USS Louisville (CA-28) was a Northampton class heavy cruiser that fought at Guadalcanal, in the Aleutians, the invasion of the Marshall Islands, the Pelau Islands, the battle of Leyte Gulf and the invasion of Okinawa. She was awarded thirteen battle stars for her actions during the Second World War.

The Louisville was laid down on 4 July 1928, launched on 1 September 1930 and commissioned on 15 January 1931. She was designated CL-28 until 1 July 1931 when the US Navy's 8in cruisers were redesignated as heavy cruisers and she became CA-28. Her shakedown cruise lasted for the rest of 1931 and took her from the West Coast to New York and back via the Panama Canal. She was then based in the Pacific, making long goodwill cruises in 1934, 1938 and 1940. This last cruise turned into an important journey when she was ordered to transfer $148 millions of British gold from Simonstown in South Africa to New York to pay for arms. After delivering the gold she returned to the Pacific.

On 7 December 1941 the Louisville was travelling from Tarakan in East Borneo to Pearl Harbor. She completed the journey then sailed on to the West Coast where she joined TF 17, picked up a convoy and escorted reinforcements to Samoa. On the way from Samoa to Pearl Harbor the task force's carriers attacked the Gilbert and Marshall Islands. After that she patrolled the area around Kanton Island and the Ellice Islands.

In May 1942 the Louisville joined the carrier task force TF 119 and took part in operations around the Bismarck Archipelago and the Solomon Islands. The task force operated in the area around Salamaua, Lae and Rabaul then returned to pearl harbour. The Louisville continued on to San Francisco to have extra anti-aircraft guns installed.

On 31 May 1942 she departed for the Aleutians, where she joined TF8. She took part in the bombardment of Kiska Island, but spent most of her time escorting convoys in these northern waters before returning to San Francisco.

On 11 November she left for Pearl Harbor. She then escorted troop transports from Pearl to New Caledonia, before heading north to join TF 76 at Espiritu Santo. She fought in the battle of Rennell Island (29 January 1943). She then returned to the Aleutians, and took part in the invasion of Attu (11-30 May 1943) and the pre-invasion bombardment of Kiska (July 1943). This was followed by a spell of convoy escort operations in the North Pacific.

In January 1944 the Louisville moved to the south Pacific where she became the flagship of Rear Admiral J. B. Oldendorf, commander of the bombardment groups during upcoming invasions. She bombarded Wotje in the Marshalls on 29 January, Roi and Namur at the start of February and Eniwetok late in the month.

In March she joined TF 58 and supported the fast carriers during a raid into the Palau Islands. Truk and Sawatan were the target of a bombardment in June, and she was the flagship of the bombardment group during the invasion of the Marianas. She was engaged for the first eleven days of the battle of Saipan, and also attacked targets on Tinian and Guam.

In September she took part in the pre-invasion bombardment of Peleliu. On 18 October she moved to the Philippines and bombarded targets on Leyte. She was involved in the battle of Leyte Gulf, fighting at Surigao Strait. This was the last direct clash between opposing battle lines, and saw the battleships of Admiral Oldendorf's bombardment force destroy a Japanese fleet attempting to enter Leyte Gulf from the south.

After this battle the Louisville joined the fast carriers of TF 38 and took part in pre-invasion strikes on Luzon. On 5-6 January 1945, while heading for Lingayen Gulf, she was hit by two kamikazes. She was still able to carry out her bombardment mission before returning to California for repairs.

The repairs were finished in time for the Louisville to join TF 54 off Okinawa, where she resumed her shore bombardment role. She was hit by a third kamikaze on 5 June, but was able to return to action on 9 June. She was ordered back to Pearl Harbor on 15 June and this ended her active participation in the fighting.

By the time the Japanese surrendered she was nearly ready for action, and on 16 August she put to sea to take part in the Japanese surrender. She was involved in the surrender of Japanese troops and ships at Darien in Manchuria, Tsing Tao in China and along the Chinese coast. She served with the Yellow Sea force from mid-October, before being sent back to the US. She was decommissioned at Philadelphia on 17 June 1946 and was placed into the Atlantic Reserve. She remained with the reserve for thirteen years before she was struck off the Navy list on 1 March 1959 and sold for scrap on 14 September.

Displacement (standard)


Displacement (loaded)


Top Speed



10,000nm at 15kts

Armour – belt

3in over machinery
1in deck

- magazines

3.75in side
2in deck

- barbettes


- gunhouses

2.5in face
2in roof
0.75in side and rear


600ft 3in oa


Nine 8in guns (three 3-gun turrets)
Four 5in guns (four single positions)
Six 21in torpedo tubes
Four aircraft

Crew complement

617? (734-48 for USS Chicago and USS Houston)

Laid down

4 July 1928


1 September 1930


15 January 1931


1 March 1959

USS Louisville (CA-28) - History

during the Great War 1914-1918.

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USS Louisville (CA-28) - History

Bring the Cruise Book to Life with this Multimedia Presentation

This CD will exceed your Expectations

A great part of naval history.

You would be purchasing an exact copy of the USS Louisville CA 28 cruise book during World War II. Each page has been placed on a CD for years of enjoyable computer viewing. The CD comes in a plastic sleeve with a custom label. Every page has been enhanced and is readable. Rare cruise books like this sell for a hundred dollars or more when buying the actual hard copy if you can find one for sale.

Some of the items in this book are as follows:

  • In Memoriam - names and rank
  • Commissioning
  • First invasions
  • Leyte, Surigao Battle, Okinawa
  • Kamikazes
  • Occupation
  • The long voyage home
  • Many crew shipboard activities
  • Crossing the equator
  • Much more

Over 545 photos and the ships story told on 235 pages.

Once you view this CD you will know what life was like on this HEAVY CRUISER during World War II.

USS Louisville (CA 28)

Decommissioned 17 June 1946.
Stricken 1 March 1959.
Sold 14 September 1959 to be broken up for scrap.

Commands listed for USS Louisville (CA 28)

Please note that we're still working on this section.

1Capt. Frank Thompson Leighton, USN29 Dec 193812 Dec 1940
2Cdr. Harold Joachim Nelson, USN12 Dec 19401 Feb 1941
3Capt. Elliott Bodley Nixon, USN1 Feb 19419 Sep 1942
4Capt. Charles Turner Joy, USN9 Sep 194224 Jun 1943 ( 1 )
5Capt. Alexander Somerville Wotherspoon, USN24 Jun 19435 Jan 1944 ( 1 )
6T/Capt. Samuel Hansford Hurt, USN5 Jan 194415 Dec 1944
7T/Capt Rex Legrande Hicks, USN15 Dec 194419 Oct 1945

You can help improve our commands section
Click here to Submit events/comments/updates for this vessel.
Please use this if you spot mistakes or want to improve this ships page.

Notable events involving Louisville include:

5 Jan 1945
USS Louisville was hit by two Kamikazes in Lingayen Gulf. Amongst those wounded was the Commanding officer Captain Rex Legrande Hicks

5 Jun 1945
USS Louisville was hit by Kamikaze aircraft off Okinawa. ( 2 )

USS Louisville (CA-28) - History

9,050 Tons
600.3' x 66.1' x 16.5'
9 × 8" guns
8 × 5" guns
6 × 21 in torpedo tubes
24 x 40mm AA in quads
28 x 20mm AA

Ship History
Built by Puget Sound Navy Yard, Bremerton. Laid down July 4, 1929. Launched September 1, 1930 sponsored by Miss Jane Brown Kennedy. Commissioned on January 15, 1931 as as CL-28 with Captain Edward John Marquart in command. In accordance with the London Naval Treaty of 1930, re-designated as CA-28.

During 1931 shakedown cruise departed Bremerton via the Panama Canal to New York. While returning from New York, participated in the 1932 fleet problems before commencing gunnery exercises in the San Pedro to San Diego. During the winter of 1933 traveled to Hawaii then returned to San Pedro and was used as a school for anti-aircraft training.

In April 1934, the cruiser steamed out of San Diego to begin a nine-month voyage to Central America, Caribbean, and the east coast then returned to California in late fall. Participated in gunnery and tactical exercises until the spring of 1935, then departed for Dutch Harbor then to Pearl Harbor for fleet training.

Operated off the West Coast, participating in the 1936 and 1937 fleet problems, trips to Latin America and training. In January 1938, Louisville began a Pacific cruise to Hawaii, Samoa, Tahiti. While at Sydney Harbor, the crew of rescued a number of passengers from a sightseeing ferryboat which had capsized when most of the passengers crowded to the rail to wave at the departing cruiser. Afterwards returned to Pearl Harbor for fleet problems.

During the winter of 1939 participated in fleet exercises in the Caribbean until May then returned to the west coast, then to Hawaii for training. Back to Long Beach, California for an extended cruise through the Panama Canal to South America including Bahia, Brazil, then to Simonstown, South Africa and received a $148 million in gold from the British government and delivered the gold to New York for deposit in the United States, then departed for the Pacific.

Wartime History
On December 7, 1941 Louisville was escorting transports A. T. Scott and SS President Coolidge en route from Tarakan to Pearl Harbor. Arriving at Hawaii, Louisville stopped briefly then proceeded on to California and joined Task Force 17 (TF-17) and departed from San Diego on January 6, 1942 bound for American Samoa arriving on January 22, 1942.

During February 1-2, 1942 she escorted the carriers that raided the Gilbert and Marshalls. During this action, she lost one of her floatplanes.

On August 7, 1942 Rear Admiral William W. Smith's Task Group 8.6 (TG 8.6) bombardment group shells Kiska Island including USS Louisville (CA-28), USS Indianapolis (CA-35), USS Nashville (CL-43), USS Honolulu (CL-48) and USS St. Louis (CL-49) plus destroyers USS Elliot (DD-146), USS Reid (DD-369), USS Case (DD-370), USS Gridley (DD-380) and USS McCall (DD-400). Although fog limited observation their floatplanes reported ships sinking in Kiska Harbor and fires burning among shore installations. The Japanese were caught by surprise and took fifteen minutes before shore batteries returned fire and Japanese seaplanes made ineffective attacks. The operation was considered a success despite the scanty information on its results.

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USS Louisville (CA-28) - History

As a luxury liner, the ship had a first class section for 305, tourist class of 133 and steerage class of 402 passengers. Amenities staterooms, lounges, telephones, two saltwater swimming pools, a barber shop, beauty salon, gymnasium and soda fountain. The liner once set a speed record from San Francisco to Japan.

Operated by Dollar Steamship Lines until 1937 when they company collapsed and was taken over by the U.S. Government and became the American President Lines (APL).

On July 19, 1939 tied up at Shanghai in the Whangpoo River when Nissan Maru accidentally collided with the ship without injuries aboard either vessel.

Wartime History
During 1940 helped evacuate Americans from Hong Kong. During June 1941, the liner was impressed into U.S. Army service and made voyages from Hawaii and Manila.

On December 7, 1941 President Coolidge with transport A. T. Scott escorted by USS Louisville (CA-28). was en route from Tarakan to Pearl Harbor. At the start of the Pacific War, diverted to California where it was converted into a troop transport capable of carrying 5,440 personnel and was painted gray and armed with anti-aircraft weapons.

In her first voyage as a troopship, the Coolidge transported troops and equipment overseas to Melbourne, Wellington, Auckland, Bora Bora, and Suva then returned to California.

On October 6, 1942 departed San Francisco via New Caledonia bound for Espiritu Santo. Aboard were 5,440 troops, mostly from the US Army 43rd Infantry Division. Plus extensive equipment, armaments and supplies.

Sinking History
On October 26, 1942 while approaching Segond Channel off Espiritu Santo Harbor, the vessel collided with two U.S. Navy (USN) sea mines, laid a month earlier by U.S. Navy destroyers. Damaged, Captain Henry Nelson attempted to run the ship aground and ordered an abandon ship. Those aboard were told to leave all of their belongings behind under the impression that they would conduct salvage operations over the next few days.

Two were killed in the sinking. Fireman Robert Reid was working in the engine room and was killed by the initial mine blast. Captain Elwood J. Euart, U.S. Army Artillery Corps from Pawtucket, RI had safely gotten off the ship when he learned that there men were still in the infirmary who could not get out. Euart voluntarily went back aboard and into one of the sea doors. After successfully rescuing the men, he was unable to escape and he went down with the ship.

Over the course of the next 90 minutes, 5,340 men got safely off of the wreck and to shore. There was no panic as the troops disembarked - many even walked to shore. However, the captain's attempts to beach the ship were unsuccessful due to the coral reef. The Coolidge listed heavily on her side, sank, and slid down the slope into the channel. She now rests on her port side with her bow at a depth of 70' and her stern at 240'.

After the sinking, there were three official Court of Inquiry investigations about the sinking. The first preliminary Court of Inquiry convened November 12, 1942 aboard the USS Whitney at the behest of Admiral Halsey. The Court of Inquiry recommended additional charges be laid against Captain Nelson. The matter was referred to a Military Commission which convened in Noumea, New Caledonia on December 8, 1942. This commission acquitted Captain Nelson of guilt. From the Commission of Inquiry it came out that Merchant Marine vessels were not given all available tactical information, most notably regarding the placement of mines. This simple precaution would have prevented the sinking. This outcome did not please the Navy Department, and he was referred to a Coast Guard Investigation Board upon his return to the United States on February 6, 1943. This Investigation Board took no further action.

The two individuals killed were officially declared dead the day of the sinking. Posthumously, he earned the Distinguished Service Cross (DSC). Euart is memorialized at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific (Punchbowl) at the court of the missing, court 7. He also has a memorial marker at Saint Francis Cemetery in Pawtucket, RI at section 3. A memorial to Euart is located on the shore of Espiritu Santo, the nearest shore point to the Coolidge.

During November 20-30, 1942 the USS Ortolan ASR-5 salvaged war supplies and materials from the shipwreck.

Postwar, salvager divers removed her propeller blades, bunker oil, brass casings of shells, electric motors, junction boxes and copper tubing. On November 18, 1983 the Republic of Vanuatu government declared that no salvage or recovery of any artifacts would be allowed from the President Coolidge shipwreck.

President Coolidge ship sank off southeastern edge of Luganville (Santo) on Espiritu Santo. To the east is Million Dollar Point. She rests on her port side at a depth of between 70' at her bow to 240' to the stern. This shipwreck is often SCUBA dived and is able to be penetrated allowing divers to explore the cargo holds and interior rooms.

The shipwreck lies on her port side with her bow at 70', only a short walk and swim from the southeastern edge of Luganville (Santo) on Espiritu Santo. . At a depth of 45m within the ship is "The Lady" in the first class passengers lounge smoking room. Now she poses for those divers sufficiently experienced to penetrate the wreck.

Other sources list four or five dead in the sinking.
National Geographic "Ghosts of War"
American Battle Monuments Commission (ABMC) - Elwood J. Euart
"Captain Euart died while rescuing soldiers on board the USAT President Coolidge when it sank at Espiritu Santo, New Hebrides. Partial remains were recovered by a civilian diver in 2012. A JPAC underway recovery teams discovered additional remains in 2014. CAPT Euart remains were identified. His remains are interred at a private cemetery in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. His name is permanently inscribed on the Tablets of the Missing at the Courts of the Missing at the Honolulu Memorial, National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific."
FindAGrave - Capt Elwood Joseph Euart (photos, courts of the missing photo)
FindAGrave - Elwood J Euart (memorial marker photos)
The Lady and the President - The Life and Loss of the SS President Coolidge via Wayback Machine June 11, 2000

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Do you have photos or additional information to add?

USS Louisville (CA-28) - History

USS Saint Louis , a 14,910-ton (displacement) auxiliary cruiser, was completed in 1895 at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as the commercial passenger steamer of the same name. Chartered by the Navy in April 1898 and converted for Spanish-American War service, she operated in West Indian and and Cuban waters, cutting Spanish cables, taking part in bombardments of enemy fortifications and generally performing cruiser missions. Later in the short conflict, St. Louis was employed as a transport. In early September 1898, some weeks after the end of hostilities, St. Louis was decommissioned and returned to her owner.

The ship then resumed the commercial passenger trade, and, during the first year of United States participation in World War I, operated as a civilian-owned troop transport. In mid-April 1918 St. Louis was again taken over by the U.S. Navy. Placed in commission later in that month as USS Louisville (ID # 1644), she carried troops to and from Europe during and after the "Great War". Decommissioned in September 1919 and returned to her owner, she was again named St. Louis . However, while being refurbished for commercial service in January 1920, the steamship burned and sank at Hoboken, New Jersey. She was scrapped in 1925.

This page features, or provides links to, all the views that are available concerning USS St. Louis (1898) and USS Louisville (ID # 1644), 1918-1919.

Click on the small photograph to prompt a larger view of the same image.

Photographed during the Spanish-American War, circa mid-1898.
Note that, though temporarily in U.S. Navy commissioned service, the ship remains in her civilian paint scheme.

Courtesy of Rear Admiral H.C. Taylor.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 61KB 650 x 675 pixels

U.S. Light House Tender Suwanee

Halftone photograph, published in the book "War in Cuba", 1898, showing Suwanee underway off Siboney, Cuba, during the Spanish-American War.
Among the ships in the background are USS St. Louis (left) and USS Vixen (right).

Courtesy of Alfred Cellier, 1977.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 60KB 740 x 600 pixels

At anchor off the south coast of Cuba, June 1898.
Photograph printed by Henry Kahn & Company, 642 Market Street, San Francisco, California.

Courtesy of the Naval Historical Foundation, Washington, D.C. Collection of Captain Cyrus R. Miller, USN.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 56KB 665 x 675 pixels

The following images show USS Louisville (ID # 1644) in 1918-1919:

In port at New York City on 6 July 1918, with tugs President and Edward S. Atwood alongside her bow.
This view, showing the ship's newly applied "dazzle" camouflage scheme, was taken by the New York Navy Yard.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 102KB 595 x 765 pixels

Photographed by the New York Navy Yard on 6 July 1918 with her newly applied "dazzle" camouflage scheme.

Source: U.S. National Archives, RG-19-N box 56.

In port at New York City on 6 July 1918.
This view, showing the ship's newly applied "dazzle" camouflage scheme, was taken by the New York Navy Yard.
The ship's civilian name, St. Louis , still appears on her lifeboats.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 76KB 585 x 765 pixels

Halftone reproduction of a photograph taken in 1918, while the ship was painted in World War I pattern camouflage.
The original image was published in 1918-1919 as one of ten photographs in a "Souvenir Folder" of views of and on board USS Louisville .

Donation of Dr. Mark Kulikowski, 2005.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 58KB 740 x 480 pixels

Steaming past the Statue of Liberty, while arriving in New York Harbor with troops on board, 1919.
Photographed by E. Muller, Jr., 198 Broadway, New York City, and printed on postcard stock.
See Photo # NH 105176-A for a view of the reverse side of another postcard that is formatted identically to this one.

Donation of Charles R. Haberlein Jr., 2007.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image size: 90KB 740 x 460 pixels

In New York Harbor while engaged in returning U.S. service personnel from Europe, 1919.
The Statue of Liberty is visible in the left distance.

Courtesy of Donald M. McPherson, 1972.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 65KB 740 x 460 pixels

In port, 1919.
The original image was printed on postal card ("AZO") stock.

Donation of Dr. Mark Kulikowski, 2006.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 79KB 740 x 535 pixels

Page made 16 October 2005
New image added and page divided 17 January 2008

SSN 724 Louisville

USS LOUISVILLE (SSN 724) was commissioned on 8 November 1986 at the Naval Submarine Base, New London, Connecticut. The 35th nuclear powered fast attack submarine of the LOS ANGELES (SSN 688) class design, LOUISVILLE is one of the most advanced attack submarines in the world.

LOUISVILLE'S mission is to seek out and destroy enemy ships and submarines, and to protect our naval interest. This 360 ft, 6900 ton ship is well equipped to accomplish this task. Faster than her predecessors and equipped with highly accurate sensors and weapons systems, LOUISVILLE is armed with sophisticated MK48 torpedoed, Harpoon anti-ship missiles, and Tomahawk cruise missiles which can be vertically launched from twelve missile tubes located in the bow.

The USS LOUISVILLE (SSN 724) , NAMED FOR THE CITY OF Louisville Kentucky, is the fourth United States ship to bear the name of Louisville.

Commissioned on 16 January 1862, the first LOUISVILLE, an ironclad centerwheel steamer served continuously with the War Department flotilla on the western rivers. She participated in the successful siege which forced the surrender of Vicksburg on 4 July 1963.

The second LOUISVILLE was originally the American Line steamship, ST. LOUIS. On 26 April 1918, the steamship was renamed LOUISVILLE and served as a troop transport for several trip voyages to Europe.

The third LOUISVILLE (CA28) was launched 1 September 1930 at the Puget Sound Navy Yard, Bremerton, Washington and commissioned 15 January 1931. During World War II, she participated in several of the great naval campaigns in the Pacific theater. In her most significant engagement, LOUISVILLE participated in the battle of Leyte Gulf which resulted in the virtual destruction of the Japanese naval forces. On 5 and 6 January 1945, two kamikazes scored direct hits on LOUISVILLE which resulted in extensive damage. She was repaired and returned to sea only to be struck by another kamikaze on 5 June 1945. LOUISVILLE was awarded 13 battle stars for her service during World War II.

During Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm the fourth LOUISVILLE (SSN 724) made naval history by firing the first submarine launched Tomahawk cruise missile in war. To accomplish this LOUISVILLE conducted a 14,000 mile submerged, high speed transit across the Pacific and Indian Oceans to the Red Sea and fired shortly after noon on 19 January 1991. For exceptionally meritorious service from 17 January 1991 to 28 February 1991 during Operation Desert Storm, LOUISVILLE was awarded the Navy Unit Commendation.

LOUISVILLE was awarded the COMSUBRON Eleven Battle Efficiency "E" for 1992, and both the Meritorious Unit Commendation and the Joint Meritorious Unit Award for operations in support of the Kitty Hawk Battle Group during LOUISVILLE'S third major deployment to the Western Pacific, Indian Ocean and Arabian Gulf.

USS Louisville (SSN 724) returned to her homeport at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, on May 13, 2003 following a deployment spanning over eight months in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Louisville's availability following its deployment had one of the largest overall work packages (55,000 man-days) and lowest overtime rates (21 percent) among submarine SRAs completed in recent years at Pearl Harbor. The start of the SRA was delayed two months because Louisville was deployed for over eight months, which contributed to higher maintenance requirements upon her return. In addition, a very large modernization package was done during the SRA. In spite of all this work, the project finished on time Jan. 10, 2004 according to the revised schedule.

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Watch the video: Damaged USS Louisville and men overhaul it in Okinawa, Japan. HD Stock Footage