USS Becuna

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USS Becuna
Becuna (SS-319), after commissioning in May 1944.
United States
Ordered10 April 1942
BuilderElectric Boat Company, Groton, Connecticut[1]
Laid down29 April 1943[1]
Launched30 January 1944[1]
Sponsored byMrs. George C. Crawford, wife of Commander Crawford
Commissioned27 May 1944[1]
Decommissioned7 November 1969[1]
Stricken15 August 1973[1]
MottoTiger of the Sea
Honors and
4 Battle Stars
StatusMuseum ship at Philadelphia, 21 June 1976[2]
BadgeUSS Becuna SS-319 Badge.jpg
General characteristics As built
Class and type Balao-class diesel-electric submarine[2]
  • 1,500 long tons (1,500 t) surfaced[2]
  • 2,080 long tons (2,110 t) submerged[2]
Length311 ft 9 in (95.02 m)[2]
Beam27 ft 3 in (8.31 m)[2]
Draft16 ft 10 in (5.13 m) maximum[2]
  • 20.25 knots (38 km/h) surfaced[3]
  • 8.75 knots (16 km/h) submerged[3]
Range11,000 nautical miles (20,000 km) surfaced at 10 knots (19 km/h)[3]
  • 48 hours at 2 knots (3.7 km/h) submerged[3]
  • 75 days on patrol
Test depth400 ft (120 m)[3]
Complement10 officers, 72 enlisted[3]
General characteristics Guppy IA
Class and typenone
  • 1,830 tons (1,859 t) surfaced[8]
  • 2,440 tons (2,479 t) submerged[8]
Length307 ft 7 in (93.75 m)[7]
Beam27 ft 4 in (8.33 m)[7]
Draft17 ft (5.2 m)[7]
  • Surfaced:17.3 knots (32.0 km/h) maximum
  • 12.5 knots (23.2 km/h) cruising
  • Submerged: 15.0 knots (27.8 km/h) for 12 hour
  • 7.5 knots (13.9 km/h) snorkeling
  • 3.0 knots (5.6 km/h) cruising[8]
Range17,000 nmi (31,000 km; 20,000 mi) surfaced at 11 knots (20 km/h; 13 mph)[7]
Endurance36 hours at 3 knots (5.6 km/h; 3.5 mph) submerged[7]
  • 10 officers
  • 5 petty officers
  • 64–69 enlisted men
USS Becuna (SS-319)
USS Becuna is located in Pennsylvania
USS Becuna
LocationPenn's Landing, Delaware Ave. & Spruce St., Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States
Arealess than one acre
Built byElectric Boat Co.
Architectural styleBalao-class submarine
NRHP reference No.78002458[9]
Added to NRHP29 August 1978

USS Becuna (SS/AGSS-319), a Balao-class submarine, is a former ship of the United States Navy named for the becuna, a pike-like fish of Europe. She was designated a National Historic Landmark for her service in World War II, for which she earned four battle stars. She presently serves as a museum ship at the Independence Seaport Museum in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Construction and commissioning[edit]

Becuna (SS-319) was launched 30 January 1944 by Electric Boat Company, Groton, Connecticut; sponsored by Mrs. George C. Crawford, and commissioned on 27 May 1944.

World War II[edit]

Becuna departed New London 1 July 1944 and arrived at Pearl Harbor 29 July. Her war operations extended from 23 August 1944 to 27 July 1945. During this period she completed five war patrols in the Philippines, South China Sea, and the Java Sea. Becuna is credited with having sunk two Japanese tankers totaling 3,888 tons.[10]

The submarine arrived at Subic Bay, Luzon, from her last war patrol 27 July 1945. In September 1945 she arrived at San Diego.

Becuna received four battle stars for her World War II service.

Post-war service[edit]

After World War II Becuna continued to operate with Submarine Force, Pacific Fleet, until April 1949 when she was ordered to Submarine Force, Atlantic Fleet, as a unit of Submarine Squadron 8.

Between May 1949 and May 1950 she conducted refresher training exercises and also assisted in training of student officers and men at New London, Connecticut. In November 1950 she returned to Electric Boat Co., for a complete modernization overhaul, being refitted as a GUPPY-type submarine. The overhaul was completed in August 1951, and Becuna sailed to the Caribbean for shakedown. She returned to New London in September 1951.

Becuna operated with the Atlantic Fleet, making two cruises with the 6th Fleet in the Mediterranean and one to Scotland. Other than these extended cruises, the majority of Becuna's service was at New London as a training submarine.

In 1969, she was reclassified an Auxiliary Submarine, AGSS-319.

Museum ship[edit]

Becuna in Philadelphia. Note the difference in her appearance after her extensive modernization in 1951.

Becuna was decommissioned on 7 November 1969, and laid up in the Atlantic Reserve Fleet. She reverted to SS-319 in 1971. She was stricken from the Naval Register on 15 August 1973.

Becuna was placed on permanent display adjacent to the cruiser USS Olympia (C-6) at Penn's Landing in Philadelphia on 21 June 1976. Since 1996 both vessels have been operated by the Independence Seaport Museum.

She was designated a National Historic Landmark in 1986.[11] In 2001, Becuna received the Historical Welded Structure Award of the American Welding Society.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f Friedman, Norman (1995). U.S. Submarines Through 1945: An Illustrated Design History. Annapolis, Maryland: United States Naval Institute. pp. 285–304. ISBN 1-55750-263-3.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g Bauer, K. Jack; Roberts, Stephen S. (1991). Register of Ships of the U.S. Navy, 1775–1990: Major Combatants. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. pp. 275–280. ISBN 0-313-26202-0.
  3. ^ a b c d e f U.S. Submarines Through 1945 pp. 305–311
  4. ^ a b c d e Bauer, K. Jack; Roberts, Stephen S. (1991). Register of Ships of the U.S. Navy, 1775–1990: Major Combatants. Westport, Connecticut: Greenwood Press. pp. 275–280. ISBN 978-0-313-26202-9.
  5. ^ U.S. Submarines Through 1945 p. 261
  6. ^ a b c U.S. Submarines Through 1945 pp. 305–311
  7. ^ a b c d e f U.S. Submarines Since 1945 pp. 242
  8. ^ a b c d e f Friedman, Norman (1994). U.S. Submarines Since 1945: An Illustrated Design History. Annapolis, Maryland: United States Naval Institute. pp. 11–43. ISBN 1-55750-260-9.
  9. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 9 July 2010.
  10. ^ "Seaport Museum Philadelphia Submarine, Becuna". Archived from the original on 4 February 2012.
  11. ^ "Listing at the National Park Service". Archived from the original on 22 October 2010. Retrieved 23 August 2012.

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 39°56′37″N 75°08′28″W / 39.943550°N 75.141179°W / 39.943550; -75.141179