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SHIP STATISTICS


  Color Schemes

Class....................................Indiana

Designation...........................BB-3

Type....................................Sea-Going Coastal Battleship

Builder.................................Union Iron Works, San Francisco, California

Cost.....................................$6,575,033

Laid Down............................19 November 1891

Launched............................26 October 1893

Sponsors...............................Miss Daisey Ainsworth and Miss Eugenia Shelby

Delivered..............................26 June 1896

Commissioned.......................15 July 1896

First Commanding Officer......Capt. Henry L. Howison

Displacement (Light)..............10,288 tons

Displacement (Full)................11,688 tons

Length (Waterline).................348 feet

Length (Overall)....................351 feet, 2 inches

Beam...................................69 feet, 3 inches

Draft....................................27 feet, 1.75 inches

Crew Compliment.................32 officers, 441 enlisted crew


Engineering

Engines.................................Union Iron Works, Two (2) vertical, inverted cylinder, triple expansion (VTE) steam engines (11,110 horsepower); twin screw, single rudder

Boilers..................................Union Iron Works, Four (4) double-ended Main boilers, 15 feet diameter by 18 feet long; Two (2) single-ended auxiliary boilers 10 feet 2 inches diameter by 8 feet 6 inches

Indicated Horsepower............13,500

Max. Indicated Horsepower....17,313

Speed...................................16 knots

Endurance............................5500 nautical miles @ 10 knots

Fuel......................................Coal, Bunkers for 1640 tons


Armor and Armament 

Main Battery.........................Four 13 inch breech-loading rifles

Secondary Battery.................Eight 8 inch breech-loading rifles, Four 6 inch Breech-loading rifles

Additional Weaponry.............Twenty 6 pound rapid fire guns, six 1 pound rapid fire guns, two Gatling type machine guns

Torpedo Tubes......................Four 18 inch Whitehead


Chronological History of the USS Oregon

Click above for the history of the USS Oregon

The USS Oregon was named for the West Coast State of Oregon that lies in between the State of Washington and California. Oregon was formally admitted into the Union on February 14th, 1859 as the thirty third state.

Click on the plans below to see details

Blue Prints

Plans of the USS Oregon*

The USS Oregon was the third ship to bear the name Oregon. The first was 187 ton brig which was purchased in 1841 and was used to survey the Columbia River. The second Oregon, which was never completed, was suppose to be double turreted monitor. She was laid down in 1864, but when the Civil War ended, construction stopped and she was eventually scrapped in 1884. The third Oregon was part of the new American "Steel Navy" and was one of the most modern battleships the American Navy put to sea at that time.

The USS Oregon was built by Union Iron Works of San Francisco, California and was the first battleship built on the West Coast. Her sister ships, USS Indiana (BB-1), and USS Massachusetts (BB-2) were both built by Cramp's Shipyard of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. During builder trials, the Oregon achieved the fastest speed of the class earning Union Iron Works an extra $175,000 according to a contract signed with the Federal Government. The chart below reflects the trial run speeds for the class:

 USS Indiana (BB-1) 15.6 knots
USS Massachusetts (BB-2) 16.15 knots
USS Oregon (BB-3) 16.79 knots

In a strange twist of fate, Captain Charles Clark and Chief Engineer Robert W. Milligan were on the engineering assessment board for the Oregon's propulsion and handling tests. With the exception of the builders, no two men knew more about the engineering capabilities of the Oregon than Clark and Milligan. The knowledge gained during the assessment would serve them well on the Oregon's dramatic voyage from the Pacific to the Atlantic.


Design notes concerning the Indiana Class and the Oregon

The Indiana class battleships ushered the United States into the era of global naval power as they were the largest and most powerful warships built by the United States to date.  In many respects the Indiana's outmatched warships of other nations, including European navies. The Indiana Class battleships are know by many historians for being unstable platforms and not very sea-worthy ships. This is a true statement, but one must remember that they were designed as coastal defense ships and not intended for true bluewater operations that take place today. The United States was relatively new to the arena of capital ship construction and design. Innovative designs were present, but so was older technology. An example of this are the main and secondary battery turrets on the Indiana's. They are the "Pillbox" type that was first used in the American Civil War. Look at a picture of the Monitor from the Civil War Union Navy and then look at a turret on the Oregon. The construction is very similar.

Although the Oregon was one of the most powerful warships ever built by the United States at that time, but she did have her drawbacks.

The Oregon had a low freeboard, meaning her decks were frequently awash, and tended to roll when under normal steaming conditions. Also, due to the size of her main battery, a full broadside from her four thirteen inch rifles would roll the ship even further. This was eventually corrected by retrofitting the ship with bilge keels. As compared to the modern warships of today, living conditions were spartan at best and because coal was the source of fuel for the engineering plant, work was particularly dirty and dangerous due to the danger of spontaneous combustion.


The USS Oregon earned the following medals and awards during her service to the country:

1) Spanish Campaign Medal - April 20 to December 10, 1898

2) Cuban Pacification Medal

3) Philippine Campaign Medal - March 18 to October 7,1899 and November 8, 1899 to February 13, 1900.

4) World War I Victory Medal

5) American Defense Service Medal

6) Asiatic-Pacific Area Campaign Medal

7) World War II Victory Medal

Go to Battleship Comparison, a comparison of famous battleships that were in commission during the time of the USS Oregon.

Go to American battleships, a listing of all American battleships that served.

*Courtesy of Mr. Edward Neubauer


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