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USS Massachusetts "Big Mamie" - Fall River, MA
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member NorStar
N 41° 42.408 W 071° 09.796
19T E 320018 N 4619484
Quick Description: The USS Massachusetts (BB-59), one of several ships at Battleship Cove in Fall River, was active in both theatres of World War II and is the official World War II Memorial for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
Location: Massachusetts, United States
Date Posted: 5/22/2012 5:58:34 PM
Waymark Code: WMEFKF
Published By: Groundspeak Regular Member C4A
Views: 6

Long Description:
In Fall River, under the I-195 bridge to Somerset, is Battleship Cove, which has several decommissioned warships, including the U.S.S. Massachusetts, a decorated battleship from World War II.

From the web site for Battleship Cove:

"Battleship Massachusetts was built in Quincy, Massachusetts at the Fore River Shipyard of the Bethlehem Steel Corporation. The ship was launched on September 23, 1941 and holds the record as the heaviest ship ever launched in Quincy. "Big Mamie", as her crew knew her, was delivered to the Boston Navy Yard in April 1942 and commissioned the following month.

Following her shakedown period Battleship Massachusetts went into action on November 8, 1942 as part of Operation Torch, the invasion of North Africa. While cruising off the city of Casablanca, Morocco, the Battleship engaged in a gun duel with the unfinished French battleship Jean Bart, moored at a Casablanca pier. In this battle, Massachusetts fired the first American 16" projectile in anger of World War II. Five hits from Big Mamie silenced the enemy battleship, and other 16" shells from Battleship Massachusetts helped sink two destroyers, two merchant ships, a floating dry-dock, and heavily damaged buildings and docks in Casablanca."

From there, she went to the Pacific Ocean, stopping in New Caledonia on March 3, 1943. The ship participated in several activities and battles, including the attack on Caroline Islands, battles for Leyte and Luzon, two attacks on the Japanese stronghold at Truk, and supported the invasion of Iwo Jima. In the last days of the war in the Pacific, the Massachusetts shelled industrial sites along the Japan coast. The shelling of Kamaishi, Japan, is believed to be the last time 16" guns were fired in WWII. All-in-all, the Massachusetts earned 11 battle stars, and no U.S. Navy or U.S. Marine personnel were lost in battle.

After the war, the Massachusetts went to Puget Sound for an overhaul and then steamed to Norfolk Virginia, and was decommissioned on March 27, 1947, became part of the reserve fleet. She was stricken from the register on June 1, 1962. The ship was saved from the scrap yard, and transferred to the non-profit Massachusetts Memorial Committee on June 8, 1965. On January 14, 1986, it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Today, the U.S.S. Massachusetts is Narragansett Bay, in a place named Battleship Cove. In addition to the Massachusetts, the submarine U.S.S. Lionfish, the East German ship Hiddensee, and two PT boats (housed in a building). Battleship Cove has been in existence for almost 40 years and continues to serve civilian and military groups. The Battleship Cove site claims that they were among the first ship museums to offer group overnight events (I have done that myself - can't exactly say that I slept well). One admission covers all ships. There are many categories for admission so consult the web site.

Directions to Battleship Cove are best found on the site. In general, it is on Water Street, directly below the I-495 bridge (Braga Bridge), and is near the Fall River Heritage State Park.

Sources:

Battleship Cove:
(visit link)

Wikipedia (USS Massachusetts):
(visit link)
Type of vessel: Battleship, Second South Dakota Class

Hours of use: From: 9:00 AM To: 4:30 PM

Admission? Cost?: Adults $16.50, Children 6-12 $10, Military IN UNIFORM - FREE

Date: 3/27/1947

Parking Coordinates: Not Listed

Visit Instructions:
Logs to Waymarks in this category should include your personal photos along with any additional information you learned while visiting the site. We would also like to hear any personal stories you may have if you were a veteran that served aboard one of the vessels associated with the Waymark; or if you are a descendant of a veteran that was associated with the same. Additional photos of the veteran (especially those taken of the veteran while aboard the
vessel!) are always welcome.
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Yewbacca visited USS Massachusetts "Big Mamie" - Fall River, MA 7/13/2014 Yewbacca visited it
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