USS Downes (DD-375), 1937-1947
USS Downes, a 1,500-ton Mahan class destroyer, was built at the Norfolk Navy Yard, Virginia. She commissioned in January 1937 and was sent to the Pacific later in that year. Into 1940, when her base was shifted to Pearl Harbor, Downes operated out of San Diego, California. In March and April 1941, she crossed the Pacific to visit Australia.
On 7 December 1941, Downes was in drydock at the Pearl Harbor Navy Yard when the Japanese attacked. She was severely damaged by bombs, fire and the explosion of one of her own torpedoes and other ammunition, leaving her an apparent total loss. Salvaged in the drydock over the next two months, her wrecked hull was refloated in February 1942 and later scrapped. However, her machinery and some of her fittings were installed in a new hull that was built at the Mare Island Navy Yard, California, under her original hull number of DD-375.
Downes (DD-375) recommissioned in November 1943 and went to the Central Pacific in March 1944. She operated in that area through October, taking part in bombardments of Tinian, Aguijan and Marcus islands, and also serving with Task Force 38 during the Battle of Leyte Gulf. Following an overhaul at Pearl Harbor, Downes returned to the Marianas area in March 1945, spending for the rest of World War II on escort, patrol and other routine duties. She left the Pacific in October 1945, transiting the Panama Canal en route to the U.S. east coast, where she was decommissioned in December 1945. USS Downes was sold for scrapping in November 1947.
This page features all our pre-World War II views of USS Downes (DD-375), and provides links to those taken later.
For images of USS Downes taken during World War II
- USS Downes - Damaged at Pearl Harbor, 7 December 1941
- USS Downes - Salvage, December 1941 - February 1942
- USS Downes - Following Reconstruction, 1943-1945
Click photograph for larger image.
For higher resolution images see: Obtaining Photographic Reproductions