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USS Houston (CA-30)

Please see below for item level images and donated collections containing photographs of USS Houston (CA-30)

USS Houston (CL-30) was laid down on 1 May 1928 at Newport News, Va., by the Newport News Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Co.; launched on 7 September 1929; sponsored by Miss Elizabeth Holcombe, daughter of the mayor of Houston, Texas; and commissioned at the Norfolk Navy Yard, Portsmouth, Va., on 17 June 1930, Capt. Jesse B. Gay commanding.

After fitting out, USS Houston (CL-30) visited New York City; Gardiner’s Bay, Long Island, N.Y.; then Newport, R.I., before clearing the last-named place on 30 August 1930 for northern Europe. Following a post-shakedown availability, USS Houston (CL-30) departed the New York Navy Yard on 10 January 1931 and proceeded to the Philippine Islands, steaming via Hampton Roads, Va., the Panama Canal, and Honolulu, Territory of Hawaii, standing in to Manila, Philippine Islands, on 22 February 1931.

Sailing from Hong Kong on 30 March 1931, USS Houston (CL-30), with Adm. McVay again embarked, then visited Amoy (31 March-3 April), during which the usual calls and entertainments proceeded apace. Clearing Nanking on 13 April 1931 with U.S. Minister Johnson as a passenger, USS Houston (CL-30) reached Shanghai on the 15th, where she remained through the end of May. On 8 June, the ship sailed for the waters of northern China, and reached Tsingtao the following day. There the CinCAF exchanged calls with local Chinese government officials. Adm. McVay remained at Tsingtao, in USS Houston (CL-30), until 21 August, when the flagship got underway to return to Shanghai. During that time, on 1 July 1931, USS Houston was reclassified as a heavy cruiser, CA-30. After visiting Nanking (9-13 October 1932), USS Houston (CA-30) called at Shanghai (14 October-9 November), then Hong Kong (12-22 November), at which point CinCAF transferred his flag to Isabel and visited Canton (22-23 November), then rejoining the cruiser at Hong Kong (23 November).

Assigned to Cruiser Division 5, USS Houston (CA-30) participated in fleet maneuvers in the spring of 1934, and arrived at New York on 31 May, where President Franklin D. Roosevelt reviewed the fleet. Subsequently, on 1 July, USS Houston (CA-30) lay four miles off the Naval Academy wharf, Annapolis, Md., prepared to receive President Roosevelt and his party, who embarked in the destroyer USS Gilmer (DD-233) at 0730 to be transported out to the cruiser. USS Houston (CA-30).

For a complete history of USS Houston (CA-30) please see its DANFS page.