11 thoughts on “Battleship Oregon, 1943

  1. She was moored over by the Broadway and I guess they are taking her down to be scraped. As I said before, its too bad they didn’t save her. Would have been cool to have along the Portland @ the Maritime Museum. That must have been tricky to maneuver with that paddle wheeler.

  2. The Oregon was originally (sometime in the 20’s, I think?) moored by the Broadway. Then the “permanent” park and mooring by the Hawthorne was built sometime in the late 30s and it was moved to the location shown above. I imagine someone with access could find the exact dates in the Oregonian archives.

  3. George is correct that the Battleship was moored for 13 years on the east side of the Willamette next to the Broadway bridge, but this photo and a nearly identical Oregon Journal photo from September 12, 1938 show the Oregon being moved from the Broadway bridge location to a temporary location at the seawall on the north side of the Hawthorne bridge until it moved to the Battleship Oregon park location on October 15, 1938 as shown in the photo from Igor. If you look at today’s photo you will see that the wakes from the tug boats show they are moving up river, not down river. Also you will see that the foremast which has been in waterfront park for decades is still in place on the ship. The Oregonian from February 14, 1943 ( page 1) has a photo of the foremast being craned off the ship from it’s Battleship Oregon park location, and the paper reported the ship left Portland on February 27, 1943 for dismantling a Kalama Washington.

  4. Dennis, great info, and that makes a lot more sense now that this was actually moving the Oregon upriver to its eventual new home by the Hawthorne.

    Also, I just noticed that in today’s photo, if you look just north of the east end of the Broadway you can see the white stairway/walkway leading down from the east bank to the pilings at the old mooring site that the Oregon was being moved from. That was the walkway that had been used to access it before the move.

  5. This boat, “the bulldog of the US Navy”, was a legend. Overloaded with coal and ammo, she raced 15,000 miles at record speed around the Americas, helped liberate the Phillipines, Guam, Puerto Rico, and Cuba, fired the final blows of the Spanish-American War, and spurred the US Panama Canal project. Proudly, Oregonians saved her to be our waterfront monument and museum. In 1941, we sacrificed her as scrap for the war effort–after saving her tower. Meanwhile, her hollow hull went back to war, hauling munitions to the Pacific Theater, eventually and ironically being melted down to help rebuild Japan. Maybe some of her is in Sapporo, Portland’s sister city.

    I imagine her crew, sweating with shovels, filling boilers, as Oregon bashes through the Strait of Magellan Waves.

    I imagine veterans with invisible wounds and schoolchildren with wide eyes walking her decks, unaware of each other until two happen to make eye contact, exchanging a wink and shy smile.

    I imagine how many of us drive, bike, and walk by her mast, every day, never noticing and never stopping to wonder about about her story.

  6. After the Battleship Oregon was towed to Kalama Wa. from Portland on February 27, 1943 the Navy ordered the scrapping stopped, as they had plans to use it as a barge in the Pacific. The Oregonian on April 22, 1944 had a page 1 story and photo of the Oregon’s hull as it arrived back in Portland with it’s superstructure removed and the interior disemboweled. The Oregon’s hull tied up a the ship repair company Poole, McGonigle & Jennings located at 2200 NW Front ave.where the hull was to be made seaworthy for it’t next life as a barge.
    After the war the hull remained at Guam, but broke loose from it’s moorage during a typhoon on November 14-15. 1948 and drifted out to sea, but was located by search aircraft on December 8th 500 miles southeast of Guam and towed back. The Oregon’s hull was sold to Massey Supply Corp. on March, 15, 1956 and resold to Iwai Sanggo Co. and towed to Kawasaki Japan were it was scrapped.

  7. What gets me, comparing the 2 photos above, is the difference in the waterlines.. In the o/p photo the Oregon looks like she’s about to sink!.. but in the 2nd photo, moored, she looks just about where she should be, as far as sustained floating.. but that 1st picture looks borderline horrific.. any explanations ??.. great shots though!

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