Important Dates for TEXAS
"Come on, Texas!"
USS TEXAS (BB-35)
USS Texas (BB-35), the second ship of the United States Navy named in honor of the US state of Texas, is a New York-class battleship. The ship was launched on 18 May 1912 and commissioned on 12 March 1914.
Soon after her commissioning, Texas saw action in Mexican waters following the "Tampico Incident" and made numerous sorties into the North Sea during World War I.
When the United States formally entered World War II in 1941, Texas escorted war convoys across the Atlantic, and later shelled Axis-held beaches for the North African campaign and the Normandy Landings before being transferred to the Pacific Theater late in 1944 to provide naval gunfire support during the Battles of Iwo Jima and Okinawa.
Texas was decommissioned in 1948, having earned a total of five battle stars for service in World War II, and is now a museum ship near Houston, Texas.
Among the world's remaining battleships, Texas is notable for being the only remaining World War I-era dreadnought battleship, though she is not the oldest surviving battleship, as Mikasa, a pre-dreadnought battleship ordered in 1898, by the Imperial Japanese Navy, is older. Nor is she the oldest steel ship still in existence as HMS Warrior, the world's first all-steel warship has been restored and is available for viewing.
In addition, Constitution, Constellation and HMS Victory, launched in 1765, Nelson's flagship at The Battle of Trafalgar, are all wooden warships older than Texas. Texas is also noteworthy for being one of only seven remaining ships, and the only remaining capital ship, to have served in both World Wars.
Among US-built battleships, Texas is notable for her sizable number of firsts: the first US Navy vessel to house a permanently assigned contingent of US Marines, the first US battleship to mount anti-aircraft guns, the first US ship to control gunfire with directors and range-keepers (analog forerunners of today's computers), the first US battleship to launch an aircraft, from a platform on Turret 2, one of the first to receive the CXAM-1 version of CXAM production radar in the US Navy, the first US battleship to become a permanent museum ship, and the first battleship declared to be a US National Historic Landmark.
Current plans have been set to build a dry berth around the ship to help prevent further deterioration on the historic ship.
A recent update published by the Battleship Texas Foundation.
The 2016 holiday season provided a welcome respite to the hard work of the various restoration teams. As the new calendar year unfolds, further work on designated projects continue.
To begin, the Movie Locker restoration is moving ever closer to completion. This compartment, which was damaged over an extended period by water intrusion, will again become an eye catching exhibit, particularly for the younger crowd.
The Combat Information Center (CIC) with limited effort during the past two months still shows progress in the preparation of the overhead and bulkhead surfaces to receive new insulation. It should be noted that the space is now on the Hard Hat Tour pathway, offering not only the narrative of the function and operations of the space during World War II, but also FTV’s restoration efforts on behalf of the Texas.
The team working on the aft 40mm Gun Mounts have identified a stopping point in their efforts to restore train and elevation functions to the mounts. For the most part, this effort has been accomplished, albeit roughly; however, now that the marine contractor is ready to secure the aft portion of the ship and stage equipment, etc. for the continuation of structural work in the ship’s double bottom, further work will have to wait until that work is completed later this year.
The FTV has tentatively agreed to pay for a finite amount of lead abatement in the forward 3” magazines in order to store the large amount of 3” ammunition cans purchased this past year. Various plans are being considered as to how these may be displayed as a potential Hard Hat Tour option.
The wooden Main Deck continues to deteriorate faster than the piecemeal repairs can affect. This is probably time to re-think the efforts being made and look at a permanent replacement.