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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORY AND HERITAGE COMMAND
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Dallas

 

Alexander J. Dallas, born 15 May 1791 in Philadelphia, Pa., entered the Navy as a midshipman 22 November 1805. He served with distinction in the War of 1812, the operations against Algiers in 1815, and in the suppression of piracy in the West Indies. He established and commanded the Pensacola Navy Yard from 1832 to 1843. On 16 July 1835 he was ordered to additional duty in command of the West India Squadron and supported General Scott during the war with the Seminole Indians in Florida, rendering such efficient service that the Government gratefully named a fort for him on the eastern coast of Florida. Commanding the Pacific Squadron, Captain Dallas died at Callao, Peru, 3 June 1844 in the sloop Vandalia. DD-199 was named in his honor.

 

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A city in Texas. CA-140 and CA-150 were to have honored Dallas, Tex.

 

I

 

(DD-199: dp.1,190; l. 314'5"; b. 31'9"; dr. 9'3"; s. 35 k.; cpl. 101; a. 4 4", 4 21" tt.; cl. Clemson)

 

Dallas (DD-199) was launched 31 May 1919 by Newport News Shipbuilding Co., Newport News, Va.; sponsored by Miss W. D. Strong, great grand-daughter of Captain Dallas; and commissioned 29 October 1920, Lieutenant E. H. Roach in temporary command. Lieutenant A. R. Early assumed command 10 November 1920.

 

Dallas cruised on the east coast, participating in exercises and maneuvers from her base at Charleston, S.C. She arrived at Philadelphia 12 April 1922 and was placed out of commission there 26 June. Recommissioned 14 April 1925 Dallas served with various destroyer squadrons, acting as flagship for Squadrons 9, 7, and 1. Until 1931 she cruised on the east coast and in the Caribbean, engaging in gunnery exercises, battle torpedo practice, fleet maneuvers and problems; participating in joint Army-Navy exercises; training members of the Naval Reserve; and serving as experimental ship at the Naval Torpedo Station, Newport, R.I.

 

On 9 January 1932 Dallas sailed from Charleston, S.C., for the west coast, arriving at San Diego, 21 March. She operated along the west coast and in the Hawaiian Islands, conducting force practice and tactical exercises and participating in combined fleet exercises.

 

Dallas sailed from San Diego 9 April 1934 for the Presidential Review of the Fleet in June 1934 at New York City, and tactical exercises on the east coast and in the Caribbean. Returning to San Diego 9 November, Dallas continued to operate in the Pacific until 1938, cruising to Hawaii and Alaska.

 

Dallas operated in the Canal Zone area between May and November 1938, visiting ports of the Republic of Panama; rendering service to Submarine Squadron 3; and making a good-will call at Buenaventura, Colombia. On 17 November she weighed anchor for the east coast, arriving at Philadelphia 6 days later. She was again placed out of commission 23 March 1939.

 

With the outbreak of World War II in Europe, Dallas was recommissioned 25 September 1939 and assigned to the Atlantic Fleet, serving as flagship for Destroyer Squadrons 41 and 30. She patrolled the Atlantic coast and conducted training exercises until 7 July 1941 when she got underway for Argentia, Newfoundland, arriving 4 days later. Between 11 July 1941 and 10 March 1942 she patrolled between Argentia and Halifax and escorted convoys to Reykjavik, Iceland, and Londonderry, Northern Ireland.

 

From 1 April 1942 to 3 October, Dallas escorted coastal shipping from New York and Norfolk to Florida, Texas, Cuba, Bermuda, and ports in the Caribbean. On 25 October she cleared Norfolk to rendezvous with TP 34 bound for the invasion landings on North Africa. Dallas was to carry a U.S. Army Raider battalion, and land them up the narrow, shallow, obstructed river to take a strategic airport near Port Lyautey, French Morocco. On 10 November she began her run up the Oued Sebou under the masterful guidance of Rene Malavergne, a civilian pilot who was to be the first foreign civilian to receive the Navy Cross. Under fire by cannon and small arms during the entire run, she plowed her way through mud and shallow water, narrowly missing the many sunken ships and other obstructions, and sliced through a cable crossing the river, to land her troops safely just off the airport. Her brilliant success in completing this mission with its many unexpected complications won her the Presidential Unit Citation. On 15 November she departed the African coast for Boston, arriving 26 November.

 

Dallas had convoy duty between Norfolk, New York and New London, making one voyage to Gibraltar from 3 March to 14 April 1943, until 9 May when she departed Norfolk for Oran, Algeria, arriving 23 May. She patrolled off the North African coast, then on 9 July joined TF 81 for screening duty during the invasion of Scoglitti, Sicily, from 10 to 12 July. She returned to convoy and patrol duties until 7 September when she joined the escort for a convoy bound for the invasion of the Italian mainland. Dallas screened the transport group during the landings at Salerno 9 September, and joined a south-bound convoy 2 days later, rescuing two downed .British airmen on her way to Oran. She escorted reinforcements to Salerno, then served on escort and patrol in the Mediterranean until 11 December when she got underway for the east coast, arriving at Philadelphia on Christmas Eve.

 

Following a thorough overhaul at Charleston, S.C, Dallas escorted two convoys to North Africa between 23 February and 9 June 1944. On the second voyage the escorts came under attack by enemy torpedo planes on 11 May but successfully defended the convoy; Dallas accounted for at least one plane, and damaging others. She served on the east coast on various training and convoy assignments until 7 June 1945 when she reported to Philadelphia. Her name was changed to Alexander Dallas 31 March to avoid confusion with the cruiser' Dallas then under construction. Alexander Dallas was decommissioned 28 July 1945 and sold for scrap 30 November 1945.

 

In addition to her Presidential Unit Citation Dallas received four battle stars for World War II service.

 

Dallas (CA-150) was canceled 28 March 1945 prior to start of construction.

 

Dallas (CA-140) was canceled during construction 6 June 1946.