U.S. Navy - A Brief History of Destroyers

The Destroyers

A Brief History of U.S. Navy Destroyers
Part IV -- Modern Destroyers

American Naval History, 1984
Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships

All images below are hyperlinked to larger images for better viewing. All images are official Navy photographs.

picture, caption follows Sep. 20, 1975 - USS Spruance (DD 963) was commissioned at Pascagoula, MS. and became the first gas turbine-powered U.S. destroyer.
picture, caption follows Sep. 14, 1976 - USS Bordelon (DD 881) collided with the USS John F. Kennedy (CV 67) during night operations north of Scotland. It was not cost effective to repair her so she was decommissioned in February 1977.
picture, caption follows Jul. 27, 1981 - USS Kidd (DDG 993), a new guided missile destroyer was commissioned. Kidd-class ships were acquired by the U.S. after originally being built for Iran. They were similar to the Spruance-class destroyers.
picture, caption follows June 20, 1982 - Destroyers USS Lynde McCormick (DDG 8), USS Turner Joy (DD 951) and the cruiser USS Sterett were fired upon by machine guns from an unidentified vessel after returning from the U.S.-Thai exercise Cobra Gold, '82. McCormick returned fire and the foreign vessel fled without further action.
picture, caption follows Nov. 17, 1983 - USS Fife (DD 991) collided with the Soviet Krivak I-class guided missile frigate Razyashskiy in the Arabian Sea. The destroyer suffered only minor damage with no injuries reported.
picture, caption follows Jul. 4, 1991 - USS Arleigh Burke (DDG 51) was commissioned on this date. She is 142 meters (465 feet) in length and has four gas turbines turning two shafts. She was named for the Navy's most famous destroyer squadron combat commander and three-time Chief of Naval Operations, Arleigh Burke was the most powerful surface combatant ever put to sea.
picture, caption follows April 8, 1997 - The newest Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, USS The Sullivans (DDG 68), glides under the Newport Bridge in Rhode Island as it enters Narragansett Bay at sunset after a day of sea trials. The ship, commissioned 19 April, is named for the five Sullivan Brothers (inset), shown during commissioning ceremonies of USS Juneau (CL 52) at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, 14 February 1942. All five brothers were killed in action aboard Juneau the following November. (left to right) Joseph, Francis, Albert, Madison, George Sullivan. U.S. Navy photo by Chief Photographer's Mate (SW) John Gay. Inset photo (digital color added by the Navy News Photo Division) courtesy National Archives.
picture, caption follows Sept. 6, 1997 - The guided missile destroyer Hopper (DDG 70) was commissioned in San Francisco, Calif., during an 11 a.m. ceremony on Saturday, Sept. 6, 1997. The ship is named for Rear Adm. Grace Murray Hopper (inset), whose pioneering spirit in the field of computer technology led the Navy into the age of computers. During her career, she was know as the "Grand Lady of Software," "Amazing Grace" and "Grandma Cobol" after co-inventing COBOL (common business-oriented language). U.S. Navy photos [composite] Full story.
picture, caption follows Feb 11, 1998 - The guided missile destroyer USS John S. McCain (DDG 56) patrols the waters of the Arabian Gulf in support of Operation Southern Watch. Guided missile destroyers are multi-mission (ASW, anti-air and anti-surface warfare) surface combatants. With the combination of Aegis, the Vertical Launching System, an advanced anti-submarine warfare system, advanced anti-aircraft missiles and Tomahawk ASM/LAM, the Arleigh Burke-class destroyers such as John S. McCain continue the revolution at sea. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 2nd Class Felix Garza. [980211-N-4142G-015]
picture, caption follows Dec. 18, 1998 - As the sun goes down, the destroyer USS Nicholson (DD 982) prepares to launch Tomahawk cruise missiles on Iraqi targets. Nicholson is currently on a scheduled six-month deployment to the Arabian Gulf in support of Operation Desert Fox. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 1st Class Todd Cichonowicz. [981218-N-8492C-501]
picture, caption follows Oct. 15, 1999 -- The guided missile destroyer O'Kane (DDG 77) arrives in its new homeport of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, after completing a 50-day underway period transiting from Bath, Me. The newest of the Navy's Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, O'Kane was commissioned in Pearl Harbor on Saturday, 23 Oct. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 2nd Class Arlo Abrahamson. [991015-N-5362A-001] Oct. 15, 1999.
picture, caption follows Jan. 6, 2000 - Secretary of the Navy Richard Danzig announced that the new DD-21 will be the Navy's first class of ships to be powered by electric drive. The first of the DD 21 class of destroyers is expected to be in commission by the end of the decade.