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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORICAL CENTER
805 KIDDER BREESE SE -- WASHINGTON NAVY YARD
WASHINGTON DC 20374-5060

Online Library of Selected Images:
-- U.S. NAVY SHIPS --

USS Neosho (AO-23), 1939-1942

USS Neosho, a 7470-ton Cimarron class oiler built at Kearny, New Jersey, was commissioned in August 1939. In the months before the United States entered World War II, she was employed transporting fuel to Hawaii. When the Japanese raided Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941, Neosho was docked in the "Battleship Row" attack area, but escaped with slight damage. During the following months, she actively supported U.S. Navy forces as they attempted to disrupt the Japanese offensive and establish a stable defensive perimeter in the Southern Pacific. On 7 May 1942, after supplying fuel to USS Yorktown (CV-5) immediately before the Battle of Coral Sea, Neosho was attacked by Japanese carrier aircraft. She was badly damaged and her escort, USS Sims (DD-409), was sunk. For four days, her crew kept the crippled oiler afloat, but she was beyond saving. Neosho was sunk by USS Henley (DD-391) on 11 May 1942, after her surviving crewmen were rescued.

This page features all the views we have related to USS Neosho (AO-23).

If you want higher resolution reproductions than the Online Library's digital images, see: "How to Obtain Photographic Reproductions."

Click on the small photograph to prompt a larger view of the same image.

Photo #: NH 63448

USS Neosho (AO-23)


At the time of her commissioning, circa mid-1939.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 78KB; 740 x 525 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 50931

Pearl Harbor Attack, 7 December 1941


Torpedo planes attack "Battleship Row" at about 0800 on 7 December, seen from a Japanese aircraft. Ships are, from lower left to right: Nevada (BB-36) with flag raised at stern; Arizona (BB-39) with Vestal (AR-4) outboard; Tennessee (BB-43) with West Virginia (BB-48) outboard; Maryland (BB-46) with Oklahoma (BB-37) outboard; Neosho (AO-23) and California (BB-44).
West Virginia, Oklahoma and California have been torpedoed, as marked by ripples and spreading oil, and the first two are listing to port. Torpedo drop splashes and running tracks are visible at left and center.
White smoke in the distance is from Hickam Field. Grey smoke in the center middle distance is from the torpedoed USS Helena (CL-50), at the Navy Yard's 1010 dock.
Japanese writing in lower right states that the image was reproduced by authorization of the Navy Ministry.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 144KB; 740 x 545 pixels

 
Photo #: 80-G-32640

Pearl Harbor Attack, 7 December 1941


View looking down "Battleship Row" from Ford Island Naval Air Station, shortly after the Japanese torpedo plane attack.
USS California (BB-44) is at left, listing to port after receiving two torpedo hits. In the center are USS Maryland (BB-46) with the capsized USS Oklahoma (BB-37) alongside. USS Neosho (AO-23) is at right, backing clear of the area. Most smoke is from USS Arizona (BB-39).

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.

Online Image: 97KB; 740 x 610 pixels

Reproductions of this image may also be available through the
National Archives photographic reproduction system.

 
Photo #: 80-G-464653

USS Neosho (AO-23)


Refueling USS Yorktown (CV-5), 1 May 1942, shortly before the Battle of Coral Sea.
Note use of Yorktown's aircraft crane to support her end of the refueling rig.
Neosho was bombed by Japanese carrier planes on 7 May 1942 and scuttled on 11 May.

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the U.S. National Archives.

Online Image: 104KB; 740 x 610 pixels

Reproductions of this image may also be available through the
National Archives photographic reproduction system.

 
Photo #: 80-G-13106

USS Neosho (AO-23)


A wave breaks over her main deck, engulfing the hose crew, as she refuels USS Yorktown (CV-5) in early May 1942, shortly before the Battle of Coral Sea.
Neosho was lost in that battle.

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the U.S. National Archives.

Online Image: 152KB; 740 x 625 pixels

Reproductions of this image may also be available through the
National Archives photographic reproduction system.

 
Photo #: 80-G-16444

USS Neosho (AO-23)


Scene on her main deck in early May 1942, as she refueled USS Yorktown (CV-5) in heavy seas shortly before the Battle of Coral Sea.

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the U.S. National Archives.

Online Image: 117KB; 740 x 615 pixels

Reproductions of this image may also be available through the
National Archives photographic reproduction system.

 
Photo #: 80-G-44115

Chief Water Tender Oscar Verner Peterson, USN


Photographed circa the later 1930s.
He was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for heroism in attempting to save USS Neosho (AO-23) after she was bombed during the Battle of Coral Sea, 7 May 1942.
USS Peterson (DE-152) was named in his honor.

Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the U.S. National Archives.

Online Image: 56KB; 550 x 765 pixels

Reproductions of this image may also be available through the
National Archives photographic reproduction system.

 


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9 May 1999