Naval History and Heritage Command

National Museum of the U.S. Navy

USS Wainwright (DD-419), 1940-1946

The Sims-class destroyer, USS Wainwright (DD-419), was commissioned on April 15, 1940, at Norfolk, Virginia.  Ordered to serve on Neutrality Patrols in the Atlantic, she protected Allied convoy and merchant ships before and after United States' entry into World War II.  Assigned to the British Home Fleet in March 1942, she took part in the PQ-17 convoy mission to Archangel, Russia.  During the transit, the convoy came under attack by German Luftwaffe and became scattered.  On July 4, Wainwright came under air attack but succesfully thwarted the German aircraft.  In November, she was assigned to Task Group 34.1 during Operation Torch and participated in the Naval Battle of Casablanca.  Following additional Atlantic Convoy duty, in June 1943, she particpated in Operation Husky, the Allied Invasion of Sicily.  Patrolling the waters between Italy and Northern Africa, she helped sink the German submarine, U-593, that December.   In January 1944, she protected the landings during Operation Shingle, the Allied Invasion of Italy; and then remained on convoy duty and on patrol in the Mediterranean.  After repairs at the New York Navy Yard, New York, in the spring of 1945, Wainwright transited to the Pacific and supprted the end of war efforts until October.  In the Spring of 1946, she was designated to be one of the target ships during Operation Crossroads.  Survivng both atomic blasts that July, Wainwright remained at the Bikini Atoll until towed out to sea and sunk in July 1948. 

A model of the Sims-class destroyer can be found In Harm's Way (Atlantic Section) at the National Museum of the U.S. Navy. 

Image:  NH 107276:   USS Wainwright (DD-419), underway off the eastern coast of the United States, May 5, 1944.  NHHC Photograph Collection.