U.S. Navy Battleships
To help contain the German fleet, America sent one squadron of battleships to reinforce the British Grand Fleet at Scapa Flow, Orkney Islands, Scotland. Designated as the Sixth Battle Squadron, the ships were commanded by Rear Admiral Hugh Rodman. Squadron ships were USS New York (Battleship #34), USS Florida (Battleship #30), USS Wyoming (Battleship #32), and USS Delaware (Battleship #28), and they joined the Grand Fleet on December 7, 1917. The Americans took regular turns on convoy duty, patrol duty, target practice, and fleet exercises with their British counterparts. New York was the squadron flagship. Other battleships that rotated into the squadron included: USS Texas (Battleship #35) arriving February 1918 and USS Arkansas (Battleship #33), arriving in July 1918. Arkansas replaced Delaware. While serving in the waters, German U-boats made 6 torpedo attacks but missed every time. Division 6 was based at Berehaven, Bantry Bay, Ireland, and was commanded by Rear Admiral Thomas S. Rodgers. The battleships were: flagship USS Utah (Battleship #31), USS Nevada (Battleship #36), and USS Oklahoma (Battleship #37). Fears of possible attacks by German heavy units upon the large convoys crossing the Atlantic with troops and munitions for the Western Front prompted the dispatch. These battleships, along with Sixth Battle Squadron battleships, also served to escort President Woodrow Wilson to the Peace Conferences and the signing of the Peace Treaty. Twenty-nine other battleships served during World War I, including the U.S. Navy's first battleship, USS Indiana (Battleship #1). These battleships patrolled off the eastern coast and were used to train the crews that served in European waters. Of note, USS Oregon (Battleship #3) served in the Pacific, saw duty in Siberia. These battleships also provided turret guns for the battleships that saw service in European waters, such as USS Maine (Battleship #10), whose broadside guns were taken off and utilized for those battleships serving in Europe. For the troops returning home, some of these battleships performed troop transport duties.
Image: NH 60576: USS Wyoming (BB-32). NHHC Photograph Collection.