USS Casablanca (CVE-55)
|Laid down:||3 November 1942|
|Launched:||5 April 1943|
|Commissioned:||8 July 1943|
|Decommissioned:||10 June 1946|
|Fate:||Sold for scrap|
|Class and type:||Casablanca-class escort carrier|
|Displacement:||7,800 tons (standard), 10,902 tons (full load)|
|Length:||512 ft 4 in (156.16 m) overall|
|Beam:||65 ft 3 in (19.89 m), Extreme width: 108 ft 1 in (32.94 m)|
|Draft:||22 ft 6 in (6.86 m)|
|Speed:||20 knots (37 km/h)|
|Range:||10,240 nmi (18,960 km) @ 15 kn (28 km/h)|
|Armament:||1 × 5 in (127 mm)/38 cal dual purpose gun, 16 × Bofors 40 mm guns (8×2), 20 × Oerlikon 20 mm cannons (20×1)|
|Aircraft carried:||28 aircraft|
|Part of:||United States Pacific Fleet (1943–1946)|
The USS Casablanca (CVE-55) (also ACV-55) was a United States Navy escort aircraft carrier, nicknamed Kaiser's Coffins, lead ship of her class, named after the city of Casablanca, Morocco where a naval battle had taken place in 1942.
Casablanca bore three names and three type designators. Originally assigned the name Ameer and the designator AVG, she became ACV-55 on 20 August 1942, and was renamed Alazon Bay on 23 January 1943. She became Casablanca on 5 April 1943, and CVE-55 on 15 July 1943. Casablanca was launched on 5 April 1943 by Kaiser Shipbuilding Company, Vancouver, Washington, under a Maritime Commission contract, sponsored by Eleanor Roosevelt, acquired by the Navy on 8 July 1943, and commissioned the same day, Commander W. W. Gallaway in command. She then reported to the Pacific Fleet.
Casablanca operated in the Strait of Juan de Fuca as a training ship for escort carrier crews from the time of her commissioning until August 1944. On 24 August she cleared San Francisco carrying men, airplanes, and aviation gasoline to Manus Island, a major base for western Pacific operations. Returning to Seattle on 8 October, she resumed her training operations in Puget Sound until 22 January 1945, when she began a repair period at San Diego.
Putting to sea on 13 March, Casablanca called at Pearl Harbor, then delivered passengers and aircraft brought from the West Coast to the island of Guam. Acting as a transport ship for passengers, aircraft, and aviation gasoline, she operated between Samar, Manus, and Palau until 12 May, when she put back for a West Coast overhaul. She returned with passengers to Pearl Harbor on 24 June, and through the summer transported sailors and aviators from the West Coast to Pearl Harbor and Guam. After brief employment in carrier qualification training off Saipan in August, she carried homeward-bound U.S. servicemen to San Francisco, arriving on 24 September. Continuing to aid in the homecoming of soldiers, sailors, and Marines from the Pacific Theater, the Casablanca carried passengers on a voyage from the West Coast to Pearl Harbor in September and October, and the in November she made a voyage from Pearl Harbor, to Espiritu Santo and Nouméa to recover more passengers. Her last voyage on this duty in Operation Magic Carpet, from 8 December 1945 to 16 January 1946, was from San Francisco to Yokohama. The Casablanca departed San Francisco on 23 January for Norfolk, Virginia, arriving on 10 February. There she was decommissioned on 10 June 1946, and sold on 23 April 1947.
- This article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships.
- List of aircraft carriers
- List of escort aircraft carriers of the United States Navy
- List of World War II ships