John Pope, born 17 December 1798 in Sandwich, Mass., was appointed midshipman from Maine 30 May 1816. Prior to the Civil War, he served in the Mediterranean, West Indian, Brazil, African and East India Squadrons. From 1 July to 24 October 1861, he was attached to the Gulf Squadron commanding Richmond. He participated in the search for CSS Sumter in the West Indies while on his way to join the Gulf Blockading Squadron, assisted in the blockade of the passes of the Mississippi and took part in the engagement with Confederate States’ vessels at the Head of Passes 12 October 1861. He was relieved at his own request on account of ill health, was later promoted to commodore 16 July 1862 and then retired. He died 14 January 1876 in Dorchester, Mass.
(DE–134: dp. 1,590 (f.); l. 306’0”; b. 36’7”; dr. 12’3”; s. 21 k.; cpl. 216; a. 3 3”, 8 40mm, 2 dct., 8 dcp., 1 dcp. (hh.); cl. Edsall).
The second Pope (DE–134) was laid down by Consolidated Steel Co., Orange, Tex. 14 July 1942; launched 12 January 1943; sponsored by Mrs. Rae W. Fabens; and commissioned 25 June 1943, Comdr. Frederick Sherman Hall in command.
After shakedown off Bermuda, Pope reached Casablanca with her first convoy 23 September 1943 and subsequently escorted two more convoys to the Mediterranean. She then began work with TG 21.12, an antisubmarine task group centered on Guadalcanal (CVE–60). On 9 April 1944 Pope’s task group sank U–515 off French Morocco, and on 4 June participated in the capture of U–505 west of Cape Blanche. For her part in that action Pope received the Presidential Unit Citation. Pope continued operations with Guadalcanal in the Atlantic and Caribbean until the end of the war in Europe, assisting in the sinking of U–546, 24 April 1945.
Shortly after hostilities ceased, Pope, with Pillsbury (DE133), escorted U–858 which had surrendered in the North Atlantic, to Cape May, N.J.; then escorted another convoy across the Atlantic. After returning to the United States, Pope performed plane guard duties for Solomons (CVE–67) out of Norfolk and Mayport, then began inactivation. Pope decommissioned 17 May 1946 at Green Cove Springs, Fla. and entered the Atlantic Reserve Fleet where she remains into 1970.
Pope received three battle stars for World War II service.