USS Bainbridge Association Has A New Website


From 2002 - 2017 this site was dedicated to Bainbridge veterans and their families. It contained a great deal of information.
When the site's domain registration expired, it disappeared from the web. The new owner of the domain has chosen to keep some of the archived content on the site in rememberance of not only the Bainbridge veterans, but also the history of the U.S.S. Bainbridge.

Content is from the site's 2002 - 2006 archived pages providing just a glimpse of what this site offered its visitors.

The current website for the U.S.S. Bainbridge Association is found at: where Bainbridge veterans and their families will find the most up to date information.


"A Generation of Excellence"

I pledge allegiance to the flag of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
and to the Republic, for which it stands, one nation under God,
indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.


Welcome to the U.S.S. Bainbridge Association Site
Archived Content 2002-2006

Welcome to the USS Bainbridge DLG(N)25/CG(N)25 Association webpage. This page is intended to provide information to those who served aboard Bainbridge. We hope you will sign the log, look for and reconnect with a former shipmate, and then plan to attend a reunion.

Bainbridge Ship's Patch


Mission Of USS Bainbridge (CGN-25)


The mission of the USS BAINBRIDGE was to operate offensively, either independently or with strike and amphibious forces, against air, sea, and land-based threats. With the unlimited endurance and cruising range provided by her nuclear propulsion plant, USS BAINBRIDGE possesses the capability of conducting extended operations without logistics support. USS BAINBRIDGE's advanced search and tracking radars, combined with her extended range Standard surface to air missiles and Harpoon cruise missiles, provided a robust capability for undertaking any assigned task.

The ship's seal contains a five pointed star (which you obviously cannot see), denoting the rank of Commodore William Bainbridge USS CONSTITUTION, "Old Ironsides," is encircled with nuclear rings symbolizing the versatility and endurance provided by the ship's propulsion plant.


The Captains of the Ship

"Only a seaman realizes to what great extent an entire ship reflects the personality and ability of one individual...her Commanding Officer. To a landsman, this concept is difficult to understand, and for us mariners, it may be hard to comprehend, but it is so.

A ship at sea is a different world unto herself. In consideration of the protracted and distant operations of the fleet units, the Navy must place great power, responsibility, and trust in the hands of those leaders chosen for command.

In each ship, there is one man who, in the hour of emergency or peril at sea, can turn to no other man. There is one man who alone is ultimately responsible for the safe navigation, engineering performance, accurate gunfire, and morale of his ship. He is the Commanding Officer. He is THE SHIP."

This assignment is the most demanding and difficult in the Navy. There is not an instant during his tour as Commanding Officer that he can escape the grasp of command responsibility. His privileges in view of his obligations are almost ludicrously small; nevertheless, this is the spur which has given the Navy its great leaders.

It is a duty which most richly deserves the highest, time-honored title of the seafaring world..... CAPTAIN!"
-Joseph Conrad

VADM Raymond E. Peet 06 October 1962 - 27 July 1964
CAPT Hal C. Castle 27 Jul 1964 - 17 December 1966
VADM James H. Doyle Jr. 17 December 1966 - 30 August 1970
CAPT William R. Sheridan 30 August 1970 - 09 February 1974
RADM B. Bruce Newell 09 February 1974 - 26 March 1977
RADM T. A. Almstedt Jr. 26 March 1977 - 20 May 1980
RADM J. F. Shaw 20 May 1980 - 24 June 1983
VADM J. Paul Reason 24 June 1983 - 28 June 1986
CAPT J. Thomas Gilmartin 28 June 1986 - 23 June 1989
CAPT Laurance M. Bergin 23 June 1989 - 23 December 1991
CAPT G. M. Ziller Jr. 23 December 1991 - 24 November 1993
CAPT James M. Brown 24 November 1993 - Decommissioning



General Characteristics Bainbridge Class


Navy Designation DLGN (Prior to 1975) CGN-25 (After 1975)
Number of Miles Steamed Over 1,800,000
Type of Ship Guided Missle Cruiser, Nuclear Powered
Christening and Launch 15 April 1961, Bethlehem Quincy Yard
Power Plant Two pressurized water type nuclear reactors.
Length 564 feet
Beam 56 feet
Displacement 9000 Standard tons
Speed More than 30 knots
Keel Laid 15 May, 1959
Commissioning 6 October, 1962
Deactivation 06 October 1995
Decommissioning 06 October 1996
Crew 42 Officers, 506 Enlisted
  • Standard Missile (ER/MR)
  • EightHarpoon (From 2 quad launchers)
  • Two Phalanx close-in-weapons systems
Major Deployments 4 Mediterranean
1 Around the World 7 Vietnam 5 Western Pacific/Indian Ocean, Arabian Gulf
Battle Efficiency Awards 11
Weapons Firings 107 Missiles
Anchors (2) 9740 And 4640 Pounds
Rudders (2) 146,000 Pounds
Air Conditioning
Plant Capacity
500 Tons (Enough for more than 75 homes)
Miles of Welding Rods Used in Construction 2500
Number of valves 8200
Loaves of Bread Baked Over 604,000
Number of Eggs Used Over 8,672,400



30 October 1966

Dear Friends of BAINBRIDGE,

Many of you have just joined us recently, and to you I extend a most hearty "Welcome aboard." To those who have been with us for a while, once again I extend my deepest thanks for your wholehearted support.

Just about one year ago I wrote a letter similar to this as we prepared for transit from the east coast to the west coast via the Western Pacific. As I look around the ship today, I see dozens of new faces among the ships company. There certainly has been a big turnover since we returned in June from our deployment. And now, as you know, we are about to depart again, leaving you to "hold the fort" at home.

If the "Old Hands" will give me just a moment, I want to tell our new friends something about this ship we're so proud of. The BAINBRIDGE, world's first nuclear powered guided missile frigate, was built at Quincy, Massachusetts and commissioned on October 6,1962. She is 564 feet long with a beam of 58 feet and displaces about 8000 tons (or nearly 18 million pounds); this makes us larger than several of the World War II cruisers. We carry Terrier guided missiles, which are of an intermediate range for defense against aircraft and supplement them with two 3-inch/50-caliber twin gun mounts. Our defense against potentially hostile submarines is provided by on of the latest sonars complimented by torpedoes and ASROC ( anti-submarine rockets).

All of this is driven and powered by tow nuclear reactors. Either of these is capable of sustaining the ship and often does. Having two reactors just extends the flexibility, durability, and reliability of the BAINBRIDGE.

BAINBRIDGE is four years old now and there aren't many "Plank Owners" left. The years since commissioning have been busy ones. After six months of tests and inspections, BAINBRIDGE deployed to the Mediterranean for duty with NATO and the SIXTH FLEET. Again in April 1964 she deployed to the Mediterranean. This trip set the stage for another world's first as the BAINBRIDGE joined the nuclear powered carrier ENTERPRISE and the nuclear powered curiser LONG BEACH left the Mediterranean Sea in July of that year on an historic round the world cruise. TASK FORCE ONE - as we were called - sailed south from the Mediterranean around Africa, across the Indian and Pacific Oceans, and around Cape Horn north to Charleston, South Carolina. This globe-encircling trip again demonstrated the mobility, endurance and independence of the nuclear fleet. After a year of local and fleet operations, BAINBRIDGE left her east coast home of Charleston, S.C., and joined the Navy's forces in the Western Pacific. BAINBRIDGE, and ENTERPRISE made the 14,276 mile trip, in just 33 days, demonstrating a new dimension in readiness. Transiting around the Cape of Good Hope, across the Indian Ocean, through the Straits of Malacca, the ship arrived in Subic Bay, Republic of the Philippines on November 27,1966. After only three days rest, BAINBRIDGE and ENTERPRISE joined Task Group 77.7, proving again the extension of combat ability provided by nuclear power, in operations supporting the Republic of Vietnam.

BAINBRIDGE'S Western Pacific visit involved almost all work and no play as she spent the holiday season of 1965 directly involved in Vietnam operations. In January, BAINBRIDGE visited Hong Kong, for perhaps at the most pleasant moments of her WESTPAC tour. Back on station, we completed eight months of continuous operations, steaming more than 72,000 miles in 231 days, before returning home to our new homeport of Long Beach, California.

We have had a few pleasant months home and now we are preparing for another deployment. Because we have so many new personnel aboard, we are directing our main effort at this time to training. Nearly every evolution performed on board requires some degree of teamwork. And it is the knitting together of the various teams that makes BAINBRIDGE the efficient fighting unit that she is. You may be sure that when BAINBRIDGE deploys, she will be READY.

Of course we hope to hear from you often while we are deployed and we pray that all the news received will be good news. But, if an emergency should occur requiring the attention of your serviceman, contact the nearest Red Cross representative immediately...his verification of the need for the serviceman's presence is required to grant emergency leave. Emergency leave can be granted by the Commanding Officer only in the event of the death of a dependent or the death of a member of his immediate family. Approval by Relief and various other Navy and Armed Forces agencies will be more than willing to assist you in solving any problems you may have. Our telegraphic address during deployment will be:

Commanding Officer, USS BAINBRIDGE (DLGN 25)
c/o U.S. Naval Communications Station
Stockton, California

Back to a more pleasant note again, our mailing address will be:

(Name, rate, division)
c/o Fleet Post Office
San Francisco, California 96601

The quickest and most reliable mail service will be air mail. Air mail transportation is used for first class mail form the fleet post offices to the ship wherever possible. We'll be looking forward to those mail calls.

Captain J. L. Cook, Jr. Commander Destroyer Squadron NINETEEN, has arranged for a briefing for the families of his ships' personnel and has kindly invited our families to attend. This briefing will be held at the Sea and Shore Club on the Naval Station at 9:30 A.M. Thursday , November 10,1966. This briefing is designed to provide further helpful information concerning legal assistance, family referral problems, an other matters which may require special attention by the Navy while your serviceman is gone. In addition if there arises any matter which you feel should receive my personal attention, please feel free to contact me personally.

As you know, our sailing date is November 17th. As we receive additional information on our schedule, it will be announced. Be assured that your man on BAINBRIDGE will be giving his best effort to the cause of world peace as he serves his country on the finest ship at sea today.

For the officers and men of BAINBRIDGE, and with warmest personal regards,
H. C. Castle
Commanding Officer



Remembering The Past

"A Generation of Excellence"

The keel for USS BAINBRIDGE was laid on May 14, 1959 by Vice Admiral Hyman Rickover at the Bethlehem Steel Company, Fore River Shipyard, Quincy Massachusetts as the world's first nuclear frigate. Launched in April 1961, by Mrs. Robert Goodale, the great-great-granddaughter of Commodore William Bainbridge, she was the fourth of currently five naval vessels to have the honor of bearing the name "BAINBRIDGE."

Champaign bottle smashed against the ship at its commisioningLaunching of the Bainbridge from its dry dock.

The ship was commissioned on October 6, 1962 at ceremonies held in Quincy. The keynote speaker at the commissioning ceremony was Admiral Arleigh A. Burke, the Chief of Naval Operations. The world's first nuclear frigate carried an impressive list of equipment: two pressurized water reactors; two twin Terrier missile launchers; two twin 3" .50 caliber radar controlled gun mounts; two torpedo mounts; an ASROC launcher; and a state of the art electronic and communications suite. Commanded by Captain Raymond E. Peet she departed for her first homeport, Charleston, South Carolina. BAINBRIDGE completed her shakedown in three weeks, setting the standard for the future in terms of excellence.

In January 1963, she arrived in Charleston, South Carolina and joined Cruiser-Destroyer Flotilla TWELVE, becoming the flagship of the Navy's first all missile destroyer squadron. BAINBRIDGE began her historic first deployment in February 1963 and rendezvoused with the world's first nuclear carrier, USS ENTERPRISE, in the Mediterranean. Her first foreign port of call was Toulon, France. Later that year, in June, she earned the first of her eleven Battle "E" Ribbons for warfare efficiency, given to the best ship of a squadron or group.

In April 1964, during her second Mediterranean deployment, she joined USS LONG BEACH for the first time and later in May, along with USS ENTERPRISE, formed the world's first nuclear powered task group, Task Group 60.1, under RADM Bernard M. Stream. In July 1964, CAPT Hal C. Castle relieved CAPT Peet as Commanding Officer. BAINBRIDGE for the second straight year won the Navy's Battle "E" Award, setting a tradition of excellence which became her motto. The first nuclear task group began an around the world cruise (OPERATION SEA ORBIT), thereby becoming the first ships of the U.S. Navy to sail around the world since the "Great White Fleet" in 1908. During this cruise, BAINBRIDGE crossed the equator for the first of twenty times.

In October 1964, BAINBRIDGE returned to Charleston, South Carolina after steaming more than 30,000 miles. In June 1965, BAINBRIDGE embarked the first of the many midshipman she would host in her long life. . In December 1965, she began her first Pacific Fleet deployment in the South China Sea, off the coast of South Vietnam. Along with USS ENTERPRISE, she was part of the first group of nuclear powered ships to enter actual combat, engaging in air strikes on North Vietnam. Later, she sailed for Long Beach, California and completed the first of eight homeport shifts, arriving in June, 1966

In June 1966, BAINBRIDGE ended her first "West Pac" cruise, having steamed over 72,000 miles. Later that year, she departed Long Beach for her second Pacific cruise. In December, CAPT James H. Doyle relieved CAPT Castle as her third Commanding Officer. She ended the year on "Yankee Station" in the Gulf of Tonkin. While returning to the Gulf of Tonkin from a port visit to Fremantle, Australia, BAINBRIDGE set a speed-distance record, sailing over 6,660 miles in less than two weeks, and averaging 29.9 knots. In the summer of 1967, she returned stateside by way of San Francisco, en route to her third homeport, Vallejo, California. She entered dry dock at Mare Island Shipyard in August 1967 for her first refueling. Her first five years had produced numerous accolades, awards and records, and she had covered over 300,000 miles of ocean. BAINBRIDGE was accorded the nickname, the "Grey Ghost of the Orient," for her speed and endurance.

In April 1968 both of BAINBRIDGE's reactors were once again critical and she began her second period of active life. She returned to sea for sea trials under the auspices of VADM Rickover. She celebrated her sixth birthday conducting local operations.

January 1969 began with BAINBRIDGE underway once again for a West Pac cruise. BAINBRIDGE assisted USS ENTERPRISE in a two day search for survivors, after the carrier suffered a disastrous and deadly flight deck fire. "Yankee Station" became a familiar local over the next several years. In August, BAINBRIDGE shifted homeport to Long Beach, California. BAINBRIDGE was awarded her first Pacific Fleet Missile "E". In April 1970, BAINBRIDGE began her fourth West Pac deployment, and she won her fourth Battle "E" award. In August, CAPT William R. Sheridan relieved CAPT Doyle and became her fourth Commanding Officer. In late October, BAINBRIDGE completed her latest West Pac deployment having steamed over 50,000 miles and visiting 9 major ports in four foreign countries. The crew spent the holidays at home with grateful dependents.

Between the years 1971 and 1973 BAINBRIDGE continued to accumulate miles steamed, winning accolades, awards and earning friends in many other countries. She won the Navy's "Environmental Protection Award" in 1972. She also won Navy Battle "E" Ribbons in 1971, 1972 and 1973 and acted as a plane guard for returning POW flights from North Vietnam to the Philippines. In 1973, she became the first nuclear powered surface ship to receive an overall grade of "Excellent" in an Operational Reactor Safeguards Exam (ORSE). In late 1973 she got underway once again for the western Pacific, this time to "GONZO Station" in the Arabian Sea.

During this cruise CAPT B. Bruce Newell relieved CAPT Sheridan as Commanding Officer. BAINBRIDGE became the first nuclear powered ship to perform an alongside restricted availability outside the United States alongside USS SAMUEL GOMPERS in Subic Bay, Philippines in March 1974. This cruise would be her last for a while as she began a 27 month shipyard modernization and overhaul in Bremerton, Washington. In 1974, while in the shipyard, her 3" .50 caliber guns were removed and replaced with 20MM cannon, she received the AN/SPS-48 radar, and the Naval Tactical Data System was installed. Additionally, the aft superstructure was constructed and an additional level was added on the forward superstructure to support the SLQ-32. Rear Admiral Watkins delivered another Battle "E" Award while in the shipyard. Bainbridge Island, Washington adopted the ship as part of the Bicentennial celebration in 1975. The ship and its sailors were declared honorary residents of the island. During this period BAINBRIDGE's very first Sailor of the Year, YN1 Edwad B. Kehaven, was selected. On 30 June 1975, BAINBRIDGE was declared to be a cruiser, not a frigate, during the Navy's reorganization of ship designations; DLGN 25 became CGN 25.

After completing the 27 month extensive modernization period at Bremerton, BAINBRIDGE's reactors were once again critical and she one more moved into her familiar realm, the western Pacific. In March 1977, CAPT T. A. Almstedt relieved CAPT Newell as Commanding Officer and in April she moved her homeport to San Diego in yet another homeport change, the fifth of her life. Between 1978 and 1981, BAINBRIDGE was busy with three western Pacific/Indian Ocean cruises. Racking up mileage, she crossed and recrossed the Pacific. In 1979, her Harpoon missile batteries were installed. She visited Mombasa, Kenya for the first time. On 20 May 1979, CAPT J. F. Shaw relieved CAPT Almstedt as Commanding Officer. In 1981 she visited Sattahip, Thailand for the first of many visits (Note: The ship first visited Sattahip in 1978 on a different cruise), as she was once again found on "GONZO Station" in the Arabian Sea.

In November 1982, BAINBRIDGE won the Pacific Fleet's "MARJORIE STERRETT BATTLESHIP AWARD" for the Pacific Fleet for 1982, which is given every six years to the best surface combatant in the Pacific Fleet. She earned the COMNAVSURFPAC Anti-Air Warfare Award for 1983, and won another Battle "E" Award. CAPT J. Paul Reason relieved CAPT Shaw as Commanding Officer in October 1983, and BAINBRIDGE proceeded to Bremerton, Washington to complete what was to be her final modernization overhaul.

After completing her overhaul in 1984, and 19 years as part of the Pacific Fleet, she was reassigned to the Atlantic Fleet and shifted homeport to Norfolk, Virginia. During her transit to Norfolk, she became the first nuclear powered ship to visit Maracaibo, Venezuela. BAINBRIDGE refamiliarized herself with the Atlantic and Caribbean once again. As a result of Drug Interdiction Operations in the Caribbean in 1985 and 1986, BAINBRIDGE was awarded two Coast Guard Meritorious Unit Commendation Ribbons.

In July 1986 CAPT Gilmartin relieved CAPT Reason as Commanding Officer. In August 1986, BAINBRIDGE set sail the Mediterranean Sea for the first time in 22 years. In 1988, during her next deployment to the Mediterranean, BAINBRIDGE participated in the COMSIXFLT Change of Command. BAINBRIDGE visited ports in France, Israel, Egypt, Morocco, and Tunisia.

In June 1989, CAPT Bergen relieved CAPT Gilmartin as Commanding Officer. Later that year, BAINBRIDGE entered Norfolk Naval Shipyard for an extended SRA. In June 1990, she visited Canada for the first time, berthing in Halifax, Nova Scotia. In 1990 she moved northward into the Norwegian Sea. On 5 September 1990, she arrived in Portsmouth, England, her first visit to the United Kingdom. Next she moved northward to Oslo, Norway and to Wilhelmshaven, Germany. From Wilhelmshaven, she escorted the SS GOPHER STATE and SS FLICKERTAIL STATE, which were carrying nerve gas canisters to be destroyed at an incinerator in the Pacific, all the way to the Galapagos Islands, where she was met by USS TRUXTUN and relieved of her escort duties. During her return to the East Coast, she made a transit through the Panama Canal. BAINBRIDGE celebrated her 28th birthday on the trip north. In 1991, BAINBRIDGE participated in the Surface Ship Radiated Noise Measurement Tests in the Caribbean and in November deployed once again for the Mediterranean. In December, the ship conducted her first transit of the Suez Canal, and arrived in the Arabian Sea as part of the EISENHOWER Battle Group in support of OPERATION DESERT STORM. While there, inport Dubai, United Arab Emirates, CAPT Bergen was relieved as Commanding Officer, by CAPT G. M. Ziller Jr.

In 1992, BAINBRIDGE stopped in Mombassa, Kenya where the President of Kenya and the U. S. Ambassador to Kenya visited the ship and were given an extensive tour. BAINBRIDGE donated a large amount of blood during a local blood drive. March found the ship back in the Mediterranean in preparation for returning to Norfolk. Prior to going home, she headed north to participate in TEAMWORK 92, in the Norwegian Sea, and made her first crossing of the Arctic Circle. In 1993, BAINBRIDGE was near Haiti for Migrant Interdiction and Maritime Interdiciton Drug Enforcement operations. In late August, the ship headed north for exercise SOLID STANCE 93, where she visited Norway, Germany and Portsmouth, England. She returned to Norfolk, Virginia in October 1993.

In November 1993, CAPT Ziller passed command of the ship to CAPT J. M. Brown in a ceremony in Norfolk. She participated in COMPTUEX in the Puerto Rican Operations area with other members of the GEORGE WASHINGTON Battle Group in preparation for a major deployment to the Med in April. In April, the BAINBRIDGE volunteer program received a major boost by being notified she had won the 1993 South Hampton Roads Community Service Award. Also in April Rear Admiral J. Stark, COMSTANAVFORLANT, Commander, Standing Naval Forces, Atlantic, made BAINBRIDGE his flagship for Operation SHARP GUARD, which enforced United Nations sanctions against the former Republic of Yugoslavia. The ship also supported Operation DENY FLIGHT as REDCROWN, responsible for coordinating the air picture over Bosnia. While in the Adriatic, BAINBRIDGE distinguished herself by setting the single ship record for ship boarding inspections, with 104 boardings without a single incident. In August she completed her deployment and steamed for home, having sailed over 40,000 miles in 183 days.

August saw BAINBRIDGE winning the COMNAVBASE Norfolk Community Service award (Sea) even though she had only been in port a short time, a testament to her dedication to community involvement. In October, the venerable ship celebrated her 32nd birthday and was notified that she had won the U. S. Navy's Community Service Award (Sea) sponsored by the Chief of Naval Operations. Her volunteers spent over 4,550 hours in community service work throughout the year and well deserved this prestigious award and as a result won the South Hampton Roads Community Service Award for the second straight year, a feat heretofore unaccomplished by any organization, much less a sea deploying unit.

Preparations began in early 1995 for yet another deployment. In February she deployed to the North Atlantic for OPERATION STRONG RESOLVE, only five months since her last deployment and only one and a half months after the start of a major IMAV. During this deployment, BAINBRIDGE continued to earn accolades. Near the end of the deployment the ship was notified that her engineering plant would be shut down in April in preparation for deactivation in October. In March, she and her crew enjoyed short port visits in Bremerhaven, Germany, and in Den Helder, Netherlands. On 19 March 1995, BAINBRIDGE began her trip to Norfolk, ending her last major deployment and arrived on 30 March 1995. From 7-11 April BAINBRIDGE was once more at sea, this time as part of the GEORGE WASHINGTON Battle Group, acting as plane guard for flight operations. In late April BAINBRIDGE shifted her berth to the Yorktown Naval Weapons Station. There she unloaded her missiles and ammunition. On 29 April, BAINBRIDGE enjoyed her last cruise under her own power when she embarked her "dependents" for a dependents cruise in the VACAPES operation area. In May the reactors were shut down for the final time. After deactivation, BAINBRIDGE was towed to Norfolk Naval Shipyard for defuelling and preparation for the final resting place of the hull in Bremerton, Washington.

After 33 years of valiant service, "A GENERATION OF EXCELLENCE," has come to an end.

Huge prop from the Bainbridge now located outside in front of a building almost as a piece of art


An observation regarding USS Bainbridge reunions: I just saw on the new website for the U.S.S. Bainbridge Association that their next reunion would be in 2018 in Baton Rouge. Every now and then a year is skipped between reunions, so I guess this is not unexpected. Although I never served on the Bainbridge my uncle did and so  even though I am removed from being directly connected to the Bainbridge and those who served I have always been very interested in the five warships named after the early U.S. Navy hero William Bainbridge. I have written reports on the USS Bainbridge (1842) which was a 12-gun brig commissioned in 1842 and lost off Cape Hatteras in 1863 and the USS Bainbridge (DD-1), that was the first destroyer of the US Navy, in service from 1902 to 1919. USS Bainbridge (DD-246), was a destroyer, commissioned in 1920 and sold in 1945.

In college I wrote a term paper on the  USS Bainbridge (DD-246) which was a destroyer, commissioned in 1920 and sold in 1945 before the end of WWII. I actually saw the
USS Bainbridge (CGN-25) which was commissioned as a nuclear-powered frigate and in service from 1962 to 1996 when my uncle served upon it. This Bainbridge was re-designated as a guided missile cruiser in 1975. She was commissioned in 1962, and served for over 30 years in the Atlantic, Pacific, Mediterranean, and Middle East before being decommissioned in 1996. In 1965 this ship operating for much of its deployment that year off strife-torn Vietnam, screened aircraft carriers, served as a radar-picket ship, and performed search and rescue missions. My uncle has many stories about this particular deployment. For many people the Vietnam War is just history, we learn about briefly. But for my uncle’s generation this period has remained vividly alive, particularly for those who were against the war with protests etc. and those who served, coming back to an America that was so divided. Although my father inlisted, he missed being deployed to Vietnam.


The fifth USS Bainbridge (DDG-96), which is currently in service right now, is an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer, commissioned on 12 November 2005. It was in the new just this past June. It was one of two U.S. guided-missile destroyers that aided a merchant ship that was damaged in an alleged attack by Iranian sectarian forces. You can read more about it at:

The day that the attack occurred our webmaster informed us that our online business had just lost all its Google ranks and sales were dead as a result. He was sure we were being penalized by Google after reading and called out to the acknowledged penalty experts at TNG/Earthling. They informed us that the seo agency we had hired to help our ranks actually destroyed them by doing things that violated Google's guidelines. They were able to get things back to normal within a couple of weeks, but I'll always remember the double whammy of this naval crisis and our business blowing up all at once. It was unclear yet if the situation would result the U.S. starting to escort ships in and out of the Persian Gulf. I remember in 2015 when the U.S. destroyers briefly escorted U.S. and U.K. merchant ships through the Strait of Hormuz after IRGCN forces captured the U.S.-flagged ship Maersk Tigris. Well this was one more news article I could add to my scrapbook about the U.S.S. Bainbridge named ships.


Sailors aboard USS Bainbridge (DDG-96) render aid to the crew of the M/V Kokuka Courageous on June 13, 2019 in the Gulf of Oman. US Navy Photo

Sailors aboard USS Bainbridge (DDG-96) render aid to the crew of the M/V Kokuka Courageous on June 13, 2019 in the Gulf of Oman. US Navy Photo



William Bainbridge
7 May 1774 - 27 July 1833



Born in Princeton, New Jersey, 7 May 1774. Appointed Lieutenant, 3 August 1798: Master Commandant (Commander), 29 March 1799: Captain, 20 May 1800. Died 27 July 1833.

At the age of 15 he entered the merchant service where he made an unusual and distinguished record.

Upon his appointment as lieutenant in the Navy he was ordered to command the schooner or galley Retaliation, cruising in the West Indies. November 1798 - after a brave resistance, she was captured by the French frigates Volontier and Insurgente and carried into Guadeloupe. While here Bainbridge secured the release of a number of American prisoners and the Retaliation was restored to him by order of the Governor, that he might take them to the United States. Upon his return he was given command of Norfolk and during the years 1799-1800 made a number of captures of French privateers. May 1800 - he was ordered to the frigate George Washington to carry “tribute” from the United States to the Dey of Algiers. He was employed by the Dey of Algiers to carry his ambassador and gifts to the Sultan of Turkey and was instrumental in securing an order from the Sultan to the Dey obliging him to release 400 prisoners.

He returned to the United States and on 2 May 1801 was ordered to Essex, one of the vessels of the squadron of Commodore Richard Dale fitted out to cruise against the Barbary Powers.

March 1803 he was superintending the building of vessels for the US Navy at Philadelphia and Baltimore.

21 May 1803 ordered to command the Philadelphia, 44-gun frigate, of Commodore Edward Preble’s Squadron, to cruise against Tripolitan cruisers in the Mediterranean. 13 July 1803 ordered by the Department to sail in advance of the squadron. 26 August 1803 off Cape de Gatt, captured the Moorish ship Meshboha and recaptured from the Moors the American brig Cecelia.

31 October 1803 while in chase of a Tripolitan cruiser, the Philadelphia struck on a rock in the harbor of Tripoli, struck fast in the sands, was surrounded by Tripolitan gunboats and captured. Captain Bainbridge, his officers and men were taken on shore and imprisoned in the castle overlooking the harbor for 19 months. Upon the establishment of a treaty of peace with Tripoli, 3 June 1805, Captain Bainbridge returned to the United States in the frigate President. He was granted furlough during the years 1806-1807 and made a voyage in a merchant vessel. 1809-1810 again on duty in the Navy commanding the President. 1810-1811 on furlough and made voyages in merchant vessels to India and Russia, where hearing rumors of trouble with England he gave up his ship and returned home.

28 July 1812 he was ordered to command the Constitution and sailed on a cruise 28 October 1812. 9 November 1812 captured the brig South Carolina. 29 Dec 1812 after an engagement of 1 hour and 45 minutes captured the British frigate, Java, of 49 guns and 400 men. During this fight Bainbridge was twice wounded.

Captain William Bainbridge, USN, Commanding Officer of USS Constitution. Engraving of the medal authorized by the United States Congress in honor of Captain Bainbridge's 29 December 1812 victory in the battle between USS Constitution and HMS Java. A gold version of the medal was struck for Bainbridge and a silver one for each of Constitution's other commissioned officers. The engraving was published in Lossing's 'Field Book, War of 1812', page 463. Naval Historical Center Photographic Section: Photo #: NH 1391." title="Captain William Bainbridge, USN, Commanding Officer of USS Constitution. Engraving of the medal authorized by the United States Congress in honor of Captain Bainbridge's 29 December 1812 victory in the battle between USS Constitution and HMS Java. A gold version of the medal was struck for Bainbridge and a silver one for each of Constitution's other commissioned officers. The engraving was published in Lossing's 'Field Book, War of 1812', page 463. Naval Historical Center Photographic Section: Photo #: NH 1391."

His next duty was in command of the Navy Yard, Charlestown, Massachusetts. July-December 1815 commanded the Independence, Mediterranean Squadron. 1816-1819 on shore duty at various stations. 1819-1821 commanding the Columbus, flagship Mediterranean Squadron. 1821-1823 commanding first the Philadelphia, then the Boston Stations. December 24, 1824 - June 1827 Naval Commissioner. 1829-1831 commanding Philadelphia Station. He was again in command of the Charlestown Navy Yard until 19 November 1832, when he was granted leave. His health failed and his death occurred at Philadelphia in 1833. He was buried in the churchyard of Christ Church that city.