William Henry Moody, born 23 December 1853 at Newberry, Essex County, Mass., graduated from Harvard in 1876. Elected to the House of Representatives in 1895, he served three terms in Congress, making a reputation by his knowledge of parliamentary procedure and his perseverance in debate. He was appointed Secretary of the Navy by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1902 and then Attorney General in 1904. He became Associate Justice of the Supreme Court in 1906. In 1910 Justice Moody was retired by special act of Congress because of prolonged ill health. He died in Haverhill, Mass., 2 July 1917.
(DD‑277: dp. 1,308; l. 314'3"; b. 30'11"; dr. 9'4"; s. 84.7 k.; cpl. 122; a. 4 4", 1 3", 12 21" tt.; cl. Clemson)
Moody (DD‑277) was laid down by Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corp., Squantum, Mass., 9 December 1918; launched 28 June 1919; sponsored by Miss Mary E. Moody, sister of Justice Moody; and commissioned at Boston 10 December 1919; Comdr. James D. Wilson In command.
Assigned to the Pacific Fleet, Moody departed Boston 9 February 1920, loaded torpedoes and ammunition at Newport, R.I., and steamed via New York, Guantanamo and the Panama Canal to the west coast, arriving San Diego on the 31st. The flush‑decked four stacker operated along the California coast through June and then departed San Francisco 1 July for Washington where on the 10th she joined the cruise of Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels, Interior Secretary John B. Payne, and Adm. Hugh Rodman, Commander of the Pacific Fleet, to Alaska. On an inspection tour of Alaskan coal and oil fields and looking for possible fleet anchorages, the cruise touched at nine ports including Sitka, Duncan Day, and Juneau, and lasted for nearly 1 month. Moody returned to San Diego 31 August to operate off the California coast in training and in battle exercises for 2 months. She put into San Diego 10 October, remaining there and decommissioning 15 June 1922.
The destroyer recommissioned 27 September 1923, Lt. E. A. Zehner in command. Assigned to Destroyer Squadrons. Battle Fleet, the ship operated along the Pacific coast for the next 19 months and then on 27 May 1925 departed Bremerton for fleet exercises in the Hawaiian Islands. Operating out of Pearl Harbor and Lahaina Roads for 1 month, she then departed Pearl 1 July for the South Pacific, stopped at Pago Pago, Samoa, and then made good will visits to Melbourne, Australia, and Dunedin and Wellington, New Zealand. Returning via Honolulu to San Diego 26 September, Moody then resumed west coast operations into 1927, including a voyage to Panama between February and April 1926.
On 17 February 1927, she sailed from San Diego for tactical maneuvers with the U.S. Fleet in the Caribbean. Proceeding through the Panama Canal 4 March, she arrived Guantanamo 18 March and operated out of that port and Gonaives on Fleet Problem 7, involving the defense of the Panama Canal until 22 April. She then proceeded to New York for repairs, sailing for home 16 May, arriving San Diego 25 June.
The destroyer remained in service with the battle fleet through mid‑1929. From April to June 1928, she made another cruise to Hawaii with the fleet for the extensive exercises of Fleet Problem 8. She sailed to Mexico and Panama in early 1929 and then in July cruised to the Pacific Northwest, as far north as Ketchikan.
Moody decommissioned at San Diego 2 June 1930. She was towed to Mare Island Navy Yard arriving on the 8th. The destroyer was struck from the Navy list 3 November and scrapped in accordance with the London Treaty limiting naval armaments. Most of her superstructure was sold as scrap metal 10 June 1931 and her hulk was sunk off the California coast February 1933.