USS Iowa Heads to Southern California

On Saturday, the USS Iowa (BB-61) will be towed from Richmond to her new home in Long Beach. She is the last Iowa Class battleship in existence to become a museum, which will thankfully preserve the ship that served in WWII, carried Roosevelt across the Atlantic in 1943 and suffered a turret exploring in 1989, killing 47 crew members. 

Much has changed since this image was taken of her in the Mothball Fleet in January 2010, but my feelings about her still remain the same. She is magnificent. 

The first time I set foot on her deck, I was immersed in the history, tragedy and beauty of this ship and though I am sad to see her leave the Bay Area, I am incredibly happy to see such a big part of our history preserved. 

Photo: "Stand Down"

Battleship U.S.S. Iowa contains three 16"/50 caliber Mark 7 guns. The turrets were called "three-gun" (rather than "triple") because each gun could be angled and fired independently of the others. These guns were 66 feet long and fired projectiles weighing anywhere from 1,900 to 2,700lbs at a max speed of 2,690 feet per second for up to 24 miles.

This world class battleship currently sits in the Suisun Bay Reserve Fleet awaiting her fate. Currently there is a batte between Long Beach and Mare Island as to where the ship will be docked and turned into a museum. The Navy seems to have chosen Mare Island as the ship's home, but San Pedro seems to have more funding and monetary support.