Never in known history has a ship taken so many of
her crew down with her. Thus is the story of the
USS Arizona (BB-39). The Arizona was built as part
of Americas pre-World War I modernization of the
U.S. Navy. She was also built in the U.S. Navys
response to the naval arms race that had begun in
1906 when the Royal Navy completed the HMS
She was not a large battleship by
todays standards, but before World War II, it was
considered very reliable if war was a threat to
the United States. She belonged to the
Pennsylvania battleship class (which consisted of
the Arizona and Pennsylvania). The construction of
Battleship number 39 began on March 16, 1914, in
the New York Navy Yard. It was later to be known
as the Arizona. Original speculation was that the
ship would be named North Carolina, the home state
of Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels. (dizzy.
library.arizona.edu) She was launched and
christened on June 19, 1915 by Miss Esther Ross of
Prescott, along with traditional champagne.
Construction on the floating hull continued, and
the ship was commissioned on October 17, 1916.
cost for hull and machinery was $7,425,000 and her
total cost was $712,993,579. She experienced
considerable problems with her engines during her
trials, to the extent, that her blades were
striped from one of her turbines, requiring months
in dry dock to replace.
(dizzy.library.arizona.edu) After the work was
finished, World War I kicked in; the Arizona
served with the Atlantic Fleet as a gunnery
training ship during the war. Since goal was more
plentiful than oil in Great Britain during the
war, the Arizona had modern oil fired boilers,
prevented her from joining other U.S. battleships
serving the British Grand Fleet. She later served
as the flagship of the Atlantic Fleet and of
various battleship divisions in the Pacific. In
November 1918 the Arizona sailed for Europe to
join the Battleship Division Six serving with the
British Grand Fleet, one week after signing the
On December 12, she put out to sea with
the rest of her division, to join with the
transport George Washington, which was carrying
President Wilson to the Paris Peace Conference.
She was part of the honor escort that arrived at
Brest, France on the 13th. On that day she sailed
from Brest with 238 homeward-bound veterans on
board. She arrived in New York on December 26th.
Between the two World Wars, the Arizona began
carrying airplanes on board for scouting and
spotting the fall of shells from the ships guns..
Research essay sample on The Naval Disaster Of The Uss Arizona bb 39