Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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Houston IV (SSN-713)


The fourth U.S. Navy ship named Houston. The first Houston, a cargo ship (AK-1), was built as German freighter Liebenfels in 1903 but seized in 1917, and served from 1917–1922. The second Houston was commissioned as a light cruiser (CL-30) but reclassified to a heavy cruiser (CA-30) on 1 July 1931, and served from 1930–1942. The third Houston, a light cruiser (CL-81), served from 1943–1959.


(SSN-713: displacement 6,103; length 362'; beam 33'; draft 32'; speed 25 knots; complement 110; armament Tomahawk missiles and Mk 48 torpedoes - four torpedo tubes; class Los Angeles)

The fourth Houston (SSN-713) was laid down on 29 January 1979 at Newport News, Va., by Newport News Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Co.; launched on 21 March 1981; sponsored by Mrs. Barbara P. Bush, wife of Vice President George H.W. Bush; and commissioned on 25 September 1982, at Norfolk, Va., Capt. George H. Mensch in command.

From May until June 1989, Houston participated in the filming of the Paramount motion picture The Hunt for Red October in Puget Sound off the coast of Port Angeles, Wash., and off the coast of Los Angeles, Calif.

Houston (SSN-713) V 1985-130715-N-DB801-149
Houston deploys from Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hi., to the Western Pacific, 15 July 2013. (MC2 Steven Khor, U.S. Navy Photograph 130715-N-DB801-149, Navy NewsStand)

Houston was inactivated on 28 July 2016, and decommissioned on 26 August 2016, at Naval Base Kitsap-Bangor, Wash.

Detailed history pending.

Mark L. Evans
13 February 2019

Published: Wed Feb 13 15:02:17 EST 2019