USS Bainbridge (DD-1)

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For other ships of the same name, see USS Bainbridge.
USS Bainbridge DD-1-650px.jpg
USS Bainbridge in an Asiatic port circa 1915-1916.
Career (United States)
Name: USS Bainbridge
Namesake: Commodore William Bainbridge
Builder: Neafie and Levy Ship and Engine Building Company
Cost: $303,715.70[1]
Laid down: 15 August 1899
Launched: 27 August 1901
Commissioned: 12 February 1903
Decommissioned: 3 July 1919
Fate: Sold for scrap
General characteristics
Class and type: Bainbridge-class destroyer
Displacement: 420 tons/380 tonnes (normal), 592 tons/537 tonnes (full load)
Length: 250 ft (76 m)
Beam: 23 ft 1 in (7.04 m)
Draft: 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)
  • 4 boilers
  • 2 engines
  • 8,000 hp (6,000 kW)
Speed: 28.4 kn (52.6 km/h; 32.7 mph)
  • 3 officers
  • 72 enlisted men
Armament: 2 × 3 in (76 mm)/50 cal guns
5 × 6-pounders (57 mm (2.2 in))
2 × 18 in (460 mm) torpedo tubes

The second USS Bainbridge (DD-1) was the first destroyer in the United States Navy and the lead ship of her class. She was named for William Bainbridge. Bainbridge was commissioned 12 February 1903. She served in the Asiatic fleet before World War I and served in patrol and convoy duty during the war. She was decommissioned 3 July 1919.


Bainbridge was laid down on 15 August 1899 by Neafie and Levy Ship and Engine Building Company at their shipyard in Philadelphia,[2] as one of nine ships built to a design by the US Navy's Bureau of Construction and Repair.[3][a] Although the name-ship of her class, Bainbridge was not the first ship of the class to be laid down or completed.[6]

The Bainbridge-class design was intended to combine high-speed with improved seaworthiness, and had a raised forecastle instead of the "turtleback" forecastle common in European designs.[7] The hull was 249 feet 9 78 inches (76.15 m) long overall and 244 feet 2 78 inches (74.44 m) at the waterline, with a beam of 23 feet 5 inches (7.14 m) and a draft of 6 feet 6 inches (1.98 m).[2][8] Design displacement was 420 long tons (430 t) and 631 long tons (641 t) full load,[8] although all ships of the class, including Bainbridge were overweight,[3] with Bainbridge displacing 710.5 long tons (721.9 t) full load when completed.[8] Bainbridge was powered by triple expansion steam engines rated at 8,000 indicated horsepower (6,000 kW), fed by four Thornycroft boilers which raised steam at 250 pounds per square inch (1,700 kPa). Design speed was 28 knots (52 km/h; 32 mph). Four funnels were fitted.[2][8] Armament consisted of two 3 inch (76 mm) 50 caliber guns, five 6-pounder (57 mm) guns and two 18 inch torpedo tubes.[2]

Bainbridge was launched on 27 August 1901,[2] She reached a speed of 28.45 knots (52.69 km/h; 32.74 mph) during sea trials,[8] placed in reserve commission at Philadelphia on 24 November 1902, Lieutenant G. W. Williams in command, towed to Norfolk, Virginia, and placed in full commission on 12 February 1903.[6]

Service history[edit]

Pre-World War I[edit]

Bainbridge departed Key West, Florida on 23 December and sailed via the Suez Canal to the Philippine Islands, arriving at Cavite on 14 April 1904. From 1904–1917, she served with the 1st Torpedo Flotilla, Asiatic Fleet, except for two brief periods (17 January 1907 – 24 April 1908 and 24 April 1912-April 1913) when she was out of commission.

World War I[edit]

On 1 August 1917, Bainbridge departed Cavite for Port Said, Egypt, where she joined Squadron 2, U.S. Patrol Force on 25 September. She served on patrol and convoy duty until on 15 July 1918, when she departed for the U.S. She arrived at Charleston, South Carolina on 3 August and participated with the fleet in activities along the Atlantic coast until on 3 July 1919, when she was decommissioned at Philadelphia. She was sold on 3 January 1920 and broken up for scrap.


  1. ^ Some sources state that Torpedo Boat Destroyers 1–5 comprised the Bainbridge class,[4][5] while other sources state that four more very similar ships (Torpedo Boat Destroyers 10–13) were also part of the same class.[3]


  1. ^ "Table 21 - Ships on Navy List June 30, 1919". Congressional Serial Set (U.S. Government Printing Office): 762. 1921. 
  2. ^ a b c d e Chesneau and Kolesnik 1979, p. 157.
  3. ^ a b c Friedman 1982, p. 17.
  4. ^ Chesneau and Kolesnik 1979, pp. 157–158.
  5. ^ Osborne 2005, p. 45.
  6. ^ a b Mann, Raymond A. (13 December 2005). "Bainbridge". Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. Naval History and Heritage Command. Retrieved 17 January 2015. 
  7. ^ Friedman 1982, pp. 14–15.
  8. ^ a b c d e Friedman 1982, p. 392.


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