USS Milwaukee (C-21)

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USS Milwaukee (C-21)
USS Milwaukee (C-21) ca. 1906-1908
Career 100x35px
Name: USS Milwaukee
Namesake: The city of Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Builder: Union Iron Works, San Francisco, California
Laid down: 30 July 1902
Launched: 10 September 1904
Commissioned: 10 December 1906
Decommissioned: 6 March 1917
Struck: 23 June 1919
Fate: Wrecked 13 January 1917
Sold 5 August 1919
General characteristics
Class and type: St. Louis-class protected cruiser
Displacement: 9,700 long tons (9,856 t)
Length: 426 ft 6 in (130.00 m)
Beam: 66 ft (20 m)
Draft: 24 ft 10 in (7.57 m)
Speed: 22 knots (41 km/h; 25 mph)
Complement: 673 officers and men
Armament: • 14 × 6 in (150 mm) guns
• 18 × 3 in (76 mm) guns
• 12 × 3-pounder guns
• 8 × 1-pounder guns
• 4 × .30 caliber machine guns

The second USS Milwaukee (C-21) was a St. Louis-class protected cruiser in the United States Navy. Milwaukee was laid down 30 July 1902 by Union Iron Works, San Francisco, California; launched 10 September 1904; sponsored by Miss Janet Mitchell, daughter of U.S. Senator John L. Mitchell of Wisconsin; and commissioned 10 December 1906, Commander Charles Augustus Gove in command.

Service history

After shakedown off the coast of California and Mexico, 14 March through 28 May 1907, Milwaukee departed San Francisco, California 26 June 1907 and cruised on the coast of San Salvador and Costa Rica protecting American interests and engaging in target practice with the squadron in Magdalena Bay. On 26 March 1908 the cruiser sailed from San Francisco for Bremerton, Washington, where she was placed in reserve 25 April. Except for a cruise in the summer of 1908, which took her to Hawaii and to Honduras, the ship remained in reserve status at Puget Sound Navy Yard until decommissioned 3 May 1910.

Milwaukee recommissioned in ordinary 17 June 1913 and was assigned to the Pacific Reserve Fleet. In the next two years the ship made several brief cruises, one to Honolulu with a detachment of Washington State Naval Militia, from 1 through 22 July 1914, and several along the coast of California. On 18 March 1916, Milwaukee was detached from the Reserve Fleet and assigned duty as tender to destroyers and submarines of the Pacific Fleet. Based at San Diego, the cruiser participated in exercises and maneuvers off the coast, patrolled Mexican waters, transported refugees, and performed survey duty.

File:USS Milwaukee (C-21) stranded.jpg
Milwaukee beached at Eureka, California, in January 1917 after attempting to free the submarine USS H-3 (SS-30).

Milwaukee was completing overhaul at Mare Island including installation of heavy machine tools so the cruiser could act as a tender for the Coast Torpedo Force of destroyers and submarines. Under temporary command of a lieutenant acting as Coast Torpedo Force Commander,[1] Milwaukee sailed 5 January 1917 for Eureka, California, to assist in salvaging U.S. submarine H-3 which had run aground off Humboldt Bay 14 December 1916. On 13 January, while attempting to float the submarine, the cruiser stranded in the first line of breakers at Samoa, California off Eureka. The crew reached shore safely, but attempts to salvage the ship were unsuccessful.

Decommissioning and fate

Milwaukee decommissioned 6 March 1917 and a storm in November 1918 broke the ship in two. Her name was struck from the Navy list 23 June 1919 and her hulk was sold 5 August 1919.


  1. Haislip, February 1967, p.37
  • Haislip, Harvey, CAPT USN (February 1967). The Valor of Inexperience. United States Naval Institute Proceedings. 

This article includes text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. Coordinates: 40°48′44″N 124°11′54″W / 40.812300°N 124.198333°W / 40.812300; -124.198333

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