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USS Little Rock (CLG-4)

Please see below for item level images and donated collections containing photographs of USS Little Rock (CLG-4)

USS Little Rock (CLG-4) arrived at the yard of the New York Shipbuilding Corporation, Camden, N.J., on 13 January 1957, which began conversion of the ship to a guided missile light cruiser on 30 January 1957. Change in classification and hull number from CL-92 to CLG-4 became effective on 23 May 1957. As converted, USS Little Rock (CLG-4) had a full-load displacement of 15,142 tons, and was configured as a fleet flagship. Her guns were still controlled by her original director systems, but an array of new weapon control devices and radars directed her missile battery.

USS Little Rock (CLG-4) was delivered to the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard on 6 May 1960, where she was commissioned on 3 June 1960. USS Little Rock (CLG-4) remained in Philadelphia, undergoing post-commissioning fitting out until 25 July 1960, when she departed for ship's qualification and ready for sea trials off the coast of Virginia. USS Little Rock (CLG-4) got underway for Norfolk, on 4 January 1961, where Rear Adm. James W. Davis, Commander, Cruiser Division Four, was embarked upon her arrival. As flagship of Cruiser Division Four (CruDiv4), USS Little Rock (CLG-4) departed Norfolk, on 9 January 1961, to participate in Atlantic Fleet Exercise l-61, which lasted until 20 January. On that date, USS Little Rock (CLG-4) was detached to the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard, where she prepared for an extended cruise with the Sixth Fleet in the Mediterranean.

USS Little Rock (CLG-4) was still at her homeport on 1 January 1969.  Departing Gaeta on 4 January, she supported the amphibious assault and live firing exercises as a part of PHIBLEX l0-68 at Porto Scudo and Capo Teulada, Sardinia. The amphibious assault was preceded by an opposed transit to the objective area from 5-7 January, in the Tyrrhenian Sea. USS Little Rock (CLG-4) arrived back in her homeport on 11 March 1969, and then departed again on l8 March, bound for Villefranche, arriving on the 20th. Departing again on 24 March, she returned to Gaeta (24-25 March), then steamed to Trieste, Italy. USS Little Rock (CLG-4) conducted training enroute and arrived on 1 April.

USS Little Rock (CLG-4) resumed operations underway on 21 June 1972, when she set a course for New York for a port visit (23-25 June), en route to an ammunition load-out at Yorktown (27 June), and an in port period at Norfolk into July. USS Little Rock (CLG-4) was still in port on New Year’s Day 1975, and remained there until 15 January, when she shifted to Palermo, Italy (16-19 January) before beginning her annual western Mediterranean cruise. USS Little Rock (CLG-4)’s designation was changed to CG-4 on 1 July, in accordance with a navy-wide re-classification of all naval vessels. Departing on 4 July, the cruiser was at Port Said, Egypt the next day, and was the only U.S. vessel present at the re-opening of the Suez Canal, after Sixth Fleet ships had cleared the canal of mines and debris from the 1967 and 1973 Arab-Israeli wars.

Decommissioned and stricken from the Naval Vessel Register on 22 November 1976, USS Little Rock (CLG-4) was donated to the Buffalo Naval and Servicemen's Park, later re-named the Buffalo and Erie County Naval and Military Park, in Buffalo, N.Y., to serve as a museum ship.

For a complete history of USS Little Rock (CLG-4) please see its DANFS page.