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Goldsborough II (Destroyer No. 188)


Louis Malesherbes Goldsborough, born 18 February 1805 in Washington, D.C., was appointed Midshipman 28 June 1812, but did not serve until 13 February 1816 when he reported for duty at the Washington Navy Yard. He led a four-boat night expedition from Porpoise in September 1827 to rescue British merchant brig Comet from Mediterranean pirates. In 1830 he was appointed first officer in charge of the newly created Depot of Charts and Instruments at Washington, the rude beginning of the United States Hydrographic Office. It was Goldsborough who suggested creation of the depot and initiated the collection and centralization of the instruments, books and charts that were scattered among several Navy yards. After 2 years he was relieved by Lt. Charles Wilkes.

Goldsborough led German emigrants to Wirt's Estates near Monticello, Fla., in 1833; then took leave from the Navy to command a steamboat expedition and later mounted volunteers in the Seminole War. After cruising the Pacific in frigate United States, he participated in the bombardment of Vera Cruz in Ohio. He served consecutively as: commander of a detachment in the expedition against Tuxpan; senior officer of a commission which explored California and Oregon (1849-1850); Superintendent of the Naval Academy (1853-1857); and commander of the Brazil Squadron (1859-1861). During his command of the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron October 1861 to September 1862, he led his fleet off North Carolina, where in cooperation with troops under General Burnside, he captured Roanoke Island and destroyed a small Confederate fleet. After special administrative duties in Washington, D.C., he took command of the European Squadron in the last year of the Civil War, returning to Washington in 1868 to serve as Commander of the Washington Navy Yard until his retirement in 1873. Rear Admiral Goldsborough died 20 February 1877.


(Destroyer No. 188; dp. 1,215; l. 314'5"; b. 31'9"; dr. 9'4"; s. 35 k.; cpl. 101; a. 4 4", 1 3", 12 21" tt.; cl. Clemson)

The second Goldsborough (Destroyer No. 188) was launched 20 November 1918 by the Newport News Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Co., Newport News, Va.; sponsored by Miss Lucetta Pennington Goldsborough, daughter; commissioned at Norfolk 26 January 1920, Cmdr. Francis M. Robinson in command.

Goldsborough joined Division 25, Squadron 3, U.S. Atlantic Fleet, departing Norfolk 25 February 1920 for training at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and returning to New York 1 May 1920 for maneuvers and tactics off the New England Coast.

Reclassified as DD-188 on 1 July 1920, she stood out of Hampton Roads on 1 September 1920 on a practice cruise in the Gulf of Mexico, returning to Norfolk 10 October for operations along the seaboard to New York until 5 January 1921 when she sailed to join the combined Battle Fleet off Cuba; thence she steamed through the Panama Canal to Callao, Peru, and back to Guantanamo Bay for further battle practice before return to Norfolk on 27 April. She entered Philadelphia Navy Yard on 28 April for inactivation and decommissioned 14 July 1922.

Redesignated as AVP-18 on 15 November 1939, she was converted to a small seaplane tender at the New York Navy Yard, and recommissioned on 1 July 1940. She was redesignated as AVD-5 -- seaplane tender (destroyer) -- on 2 August 1940.

Goldsborough departed New York on 12 August 1940, to tend amphibious planes on neutrality patrol in waters ranging from Puerto Rico, Cuba, and the Virgin Islands, to Trinidad, British West Indies. She returned to Norfolk 23 January 1941 for repairs; conducted a cruise to the coast of Mexico and returned (3 March-3 April), then served the Patrol Wing Support Force, Patrol Squadrons, U.S. Atlantic Fleet, at Argentia, Newfoundland; Reykjavik, Iceland; and Gungnat Bay, Greenland. She arrived at Norfolk from Greenland on 13 October 1941 for repairs.

Upon completion of those repairs and alterations, she then proceeded to Seamour Bay, Galapagos Islands, arriving 23 December 1941. There she tended patrol planes of Patrol Squadron 3, sometimes steaming down the coast of the Americas as far as Valparaiso, Chile, with time-out for service as a simulated target in Panama Bay.

She transited the Panama Canal on 17 June 1942 and entered Trujillo Bay, Honduras, on the 21st with Commander Patrol Squadron 3 embarked to direct operations of the squadron on special patrols in conjunction with other naval units attempting to locate Axis submarine bases. After being contacted by patrol planes, a party from Goldsborough boarded Honduran merchant ship Laguna 25 June, and Honduran merchant ship Racer the following day. Both were turned over to British authorities at Belize. On 3 July Goldsborough departed Puerta Castilla for Portland Bight, Jamaica. Here she tended aircraft on special patrols in the protection of convoys between Cuba and the Panama Canal. She arrived at the Charleston Navy Yard from Jamaica 2 October 1942 for repairs, followed by gunnery practice in the Chesapeake Bay.

Goldsborough departed Norfolk 30 October 1942 to escort seaplane tender Pocomoke (AV-9) to Panama and Albemarle (AV-5) to aviation patrol bases at San Juan, P.R.; Trinidad, B.W.I.; and Bermuda. She returned to Norfolk on 30 November 1942 to spend the following year as escort for Albemarle while carrying men, aeronautical cargo, and aircraft of Fleet Air Wings of the U.S. Atlantic Fleet to Guantanamo Bay; Trinidad; Bermuda ; San Juan; and Recife, Brazil. She returned to Norfolk on the last of those missions on 5 September 1943. After patrol with Core (CVE-13) antisubmarine warfare task group 5 October-15 November 1943, Goldsborough was once again designated as a destroyer, DD-188, on 1 December 1943.

On 4 December 1943, Goldsborough sailed with the Core task group. Near midnight of 2 January 1944, she made visual contact with a surfaced U-boat off the Azores, fought through heavy seas in an attempt to ram amidships. She just missed the U-boat's stern as it slid under the sea. After two depth charge attacks, Goldsborough lost contact. She then screened Core to Norfolk 18 January and proceeded to New York Navy Yard for voyage repairs. Thereafter, she escorted Aucilla (AO-56) to Trinidad, returning to Norfolk as escort of Nitro (AE-2) then entered the Charleston Navy Yard on 21 February 1944 for conversion to a high speed transport, and redesignation as APD-32, 7 March 1944.

Goldsborough departed Charleston 10 April and reached Pearl Harbor, via the Panama Canal and San Diego, 9 May for amphibious assault training in Hanalei and Kawaihae Bay. She sailed 29 May to rendezvous with a transport force proceeding via Ulithi to arrive off the invasion beaches of Saipan 15 June 1944. An aerial bomb exploded 400 yards to starboard as she assisted in repelling a raid of enemy dive bombers. The following day she landed the 2d Company, 1st Battalion, 2nd Marines, just south of Charon Kanoa. During the next 5 weeks she escorted supply and troop convoys between the Marshalls and Saipan, taking time out for direct gunfire support of troops on Saipan the nights of 29 June and 7 July. She departed Saipan 28 July to train Underwater Demolition Team 4 in Hawaiian waters, then joined a Beach Demolition Task Group that sailed from Manus, Admiralty Islands, 12 October to destroy enemy facilities and installations in the vicinity of the proposed invasion beaches of eastern Leyte as well as on the entrance islands of Leyte Gulf. The afternoon of 18 October 1944 she poured a withering fire into concealed enemy positions at Dulag, covering underwater demolition teams headed for the shore. Two 75mm. shells straddled the high speed transport; and a third hit her number one stack, killing 2 and wounding 16 men. She screened the battleships and cruisers, carrying out a relentless bombardment through the night of the 19th and supporting troops that launched the invasion the morning of 20 October 1944. She departed the following day to embark troops at Noemfoor, Schouten Islands, landing them on the beaches at Tolasa, Leyte, 18 November 1944. She again arrived off Noemfoor 19 December for transport of troops to Mios Woendi, Padiados Islands, thence via Morotai with six merchant ships escorted into Leyte Gulf 6 January 1945. Her next assignment was patrolling the entrance of Lingayen Gulf. She dispatched a medical team to damaged Gilligan 12 January, picked up two survivors, then put her rudder full left as she opened fire on a suicide plane which just missed the stern of Seusens before crashing into the sea. Goldsborough continued patrol in the Gulf and off San Fabian until 18 January 1945.

After voyage repairs at Ulithi, Goldsborough landed troops at Iwo Jima (3-6 March), thence via the Marianas to Tulagi harbor in the Solomons and back to Ulithi, where she joined transports bound for Okinawa. She arrived off Okinawa 11 April, fought off aerial raids near Hagushi beaches the following day and rescued a Navy fighter pilot whose plane was damaged in aerial combat. She departed Okinawa 14 April for voyage repairs at Guam, returning 15 May 1945 to patrol off Hagushi beaches until the 31st. Goldsborough was then routed via the Marianas, Marshalls, and Pearl Harbor to San Pedro, Calif., where she arrived 1 July 1945. Redesignated again as destroyer (DD-188) 10 July, she decommissioned there 11 October 1945. Her name was struck from the Navy List 24 October 1945 and she was sold for scrapping 21 November 1946 to Hugo Nuef Corporation, New York, N.Y.

Goldsborough received five battle stars for service in World War II.

Published: Sun Aug 07 20:09:01 EDT 2016