United States Ships named Enterprise

Enterprise I: A British supply sloop captured by the United States in Canada and armed for use on Lake Champlain -- run aground and burnt to avoid capture by the British in 1777.

Enterprise II: schooner purchased in 1776 for the Continental Navy and sailed the Chesapeake Bay to protect from the British -- records are hazy but indicate the ship was given to the Maryland Council of Safety in 1777.

Enterprise III: schooner built in Baltimore, Maryland in 1799. She fought in miscellaneous battles in the Caribbean, near Malta and along the East Coast -- stranded and sunk (non-hostile) on Little Curacao Island in the West Indies.

Enterprise IV: schooner launched from the New York Navy Yard in 1831 and sent to monitor US interests in Brazil -- decommissioned and sold in 1884.

Enterprise V: a bark-rigged screw sloop-of-war built in Kittery, Maine in 1874, used primarily for surveying operations at the mouth of the Mississippi and up the Amazon and Madeira rivers. in 1882 it went around the world and came back with a plethora of information about the oceans, currents, and the sea floor. Used as a training vessel at the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland until it was sold in 1909.

Enterprise VI: a noncommissioned motor boat built and used during World War I.

Enterprise VII: launched in 1936 out of Newport News, Virginia, this aircraft carrier was used throughout the Pacific Ocean during World War II. The ship was heavily damaged, suffering 3 direct hits and 4 near misses killing 74, wounding 95, and inflicting serious damage on the carrier. despite this, she returned to Hawaii on her own power and was overhauled at Pearl Harbor. -- decommissioned in 1947 and sold in 1958.

The Current Enterprise (Enterprise VIII)

The USS Enterprise is a nuclear powered aircraft carrier designated CVN65 belonging to the United States Navy and based out of Norfolk, Virginia. The Enterprise was the first nuclear powered aircraft carrier in the naval fleet, as well as being the tallest, and longest warship ever built (interestingly, it was larger by only 3/4 of an inch). It was built by the Newport News Shipbuilding and Drydock Company.

The USS Enterprise was christened on Sept. 24 1960, and commissioned in 1961. Her first use was in the quarantine of offensive military equipment under shipment to Cuba in 1962.

In 1964, two more nuclear powered vessels (The USS Long Beach and the USS Bainbridge) joined the Enterprise as a group called "Task Force One" and were sent on a journey 30,565 miles around the globe without stopping for refueling or replenishment (Operation Sea Orbit). That October, Enterprise returned to Newport News for its first refueling and overhaul.

Due to the rising conflict in Southeast Asia, the Enterprise was transferred to the Seventh Fleet (based in the Pacific Ocean). The "Big E" was the first nuclear powered ship to engage in combat when it launched aircraft on combat missions against the Viet Cong on December 2, 1965. On its second day of combat use, the Enterprise set a record of 165 strike sorties launched from the deck in a single day. The Enterprise made a total of 6 combat deployments during the Vietnam conflict.

In 1973, the Enterprise was sent to Bremerton, Washington to be refitted to support the F-14A Tomcat fighter plane and was the first carrier to deploy the new high tech aircraft.

In 1975, the Enterprise was called back to Southeast Asia to aid in the evacuation of Saigon.

It sailed to Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in January 1979 for a 30-month comprehensive overhaul.

In 1986, the Enterprise became the first nuclear powered ship to pass through the Suez Canal.

in 1988, in response to a request from Philippine President Corazon Aquino for air support from the US to help quell an impending rebellion and coup, the Enterprise participated in "Operation Classic Resolve".

in 1990, it was decided that the Enterprise was in need of a very complex overhaul and the ship was put in dry-dock in Norfolk until September 27, 1994 when sea trials to the Mediterranean Sea found the ship to be as fast as when she was first built -- still the fastest combatant in the world.

in 1996, the "Big E" was sent to enforce no-fly zones in Bosnia (Operation Joint Endeavor).

in 1997, the ship was sent back to Newport News for workups and in 1998 as a part of Carrier Air Wing 3(CVW 3) it relieved the USS Eisenhower in the Arabian Gulf on November 23.

On December 18, 1998, the Enterprise Battle Group initiated Operation Desert Fox against Iraq, dropping an astonishing 691,000 pounds of ordnance and delivering more than 200 tomahawk cruise missiles during the 70 hour operation. Upon the success of Operation Desert Fox, the Enterprise moved into the Adriatic Sea in anticipation of combat missions in Yugoslavia. The ship returned to home port in May of 1999, and is scheduled for it's next deployment in the spring of 2001.


Commissioned: 1961
Operating budget: $50 million
Population of Sailors: Over 2,800
Population of Chiefs: Over 170
Population of Officers: Over 200
Population With the Air Wing: Over 5,000
Type of ship: Nuclear powered aircraft carrier
Horse power: More than 280,000
Maximum speed: 30+ knots (specific top speed is classified)
Length: 1,123 feet
Breadth: 257 feet
Height (keel to mast): 250 feet
Anchors: 2 (30 tons each)
Propellers: 4
Rudders: 4 (35 tons each)
Reactors: 8 (according to my brother, a former damage control officer on the USS Enterprise, one of the ships nuclear reactors has been offline since it's extensive overhaul in 1990 -- this is unconfirmed as i cannot find information to prove or disprove this)
Catapults: 4
Compartments: More than 3,500
Area of flight deck: 4.47 acres

NB: The node Starship Enterprise covers fictional Star Trek vessels, while Ophie's writeup briefly describes all the U.S. Navy ships named Enterprise, and gives details about the eighth Enterprise, CV-65, a nuclear aircraft carrier launched in 1960. The following writeup is about the seventh Enterprise, which was the U.S. Navy's sixth aircraft carrier, launched in 1936.

“The Big E": the most decorated ship of World War II

On December 7, 1941, patrols from the USS Enterprise (CV-6) encountered squadrons of Japanese planes involved in the attack on Pearl Harbor. From then until May 14, 1945, when a kamikaze hit destroyed her forward elevator, “the Big E” was involved in nearly every major carrier battle in the Pacific Theater of World War II. The Enterprise earned twenty (20) battle stars, more than any other ship.

Under American carrier doctrine, aircraft constituted the fleet's shield and sword: guns and armor were sacrificed to maximize space for aircraft and aviation fuel. The Yorktown class, which included “the Big E”, reflected this doctrine. With the addition of better torpedo armor and more anti-aircraft guns, this design proved sound in battle throughout the course of World War II.

With a displacement of 19,800 tons, the pre-WII designed Enterprise was smaller and faster than a battleship of the period, such as USS North Carolina (BB-55) (35,000 tons) the battleship which frequently guarded Enterprise in the Pacific. The Essex class of aircraft carriers were about the size of North Carolina, but they were guarded by gargantuan Iowa class battleships (45,000 tons). Of course, all of these WWII-era steamships would be dwarfed by Enterprise’s nuclear-powered 1960 namesake, CVN-65, with a displacement of 85,600 tons.

Enterprise escorted USS Hornet (CV-8) on Doolittle’s raid on Tokyo on April 18, 1942, and thus missed the Battle of Coral Sea, May 7-8, 1942, in which USS Lexington was sunk and USS Yorktown (CV-5) was damaged. However, Enterprise and Hornet managed to get close enough to be sited by Japanese scouts, giving the Japanese command the impression that all of the United States’ carriers were in the South Pacific.

Since the Japanese believed they had sunk Yorktown, they assumed that their invasion of Midway Island would be opposed by one carrier or no carriers at all. In fact, Yorktown was hastily patched up and participated with Enterprise and Hornet in the greatest carrier clash in history: the Battle of Midway (June 4-6, 1942). Aircraft from the Enterprise destroyed three Japanese fleet carriers on a single day (June 4), a performance unmatched by any other ship in the war.

In August, Enterprise was moved from defense of Hawaii to the support of the invasion of the Solomon Islands. Following Marine landings on August 7 and 8, 1942, the two navies were locked in a standoff. Land-based aircraft from the island of Rabaul made it impossible for the U.S. Navy to patrol waters north of Guadalcanal, but Enterprise , Saratoga and Wasp ruled the ocean to the southeast. On August 24, 1942, when the Wasp was away refueling, the Japanese attacked with the light carrier Ryujo and fleet carriers Shokaku and Zuikaku. The Japanese lost Ryujo, and Enterprise was severely damaged. However, the Americans had lost only 30 planes and aircrew, compared to over 70 experienced aircrews lost by the Japanese, never to be replaced.

By October, Enterprise was back in the Solomons, just in time for the Battle of Santa Cruz Island, October 26, 1942. Wasp and Saratoga had taken torpedo hits in the summer, leaving only two American aircraft carriers in theater. Enterprise and Hornet faced off against Shokaku , Zuikaku, Zuiho and Junyo. The American carriers were both severely damaged, and Hornet had to be scuttled. Two Japanese carriers were damaged, but more significantly, the cumulative effect of aircrew losses at Midway, Eastern Solomons and Santa Cruz left the Japanese Navy without experienced naval aviators.

Thus, Enterprise was, from October until December 1942, when Saratoga returned from repairs, the only Allied carrier in the Pacific. The carrier’s hangar deck bore the banner: “Enterprise v. Japan”. However, the real measure of Enterprise’s victory was that throughout the rest of the Guadalcanal campaign, no Japanese carrier could come forward to challenge her: all their planes and men were gone.

Enterprise was overhauled in 1943 and supported operations for the rest of the war, until taking severe damage from a kamikaze attack on May 14, 1945. She was repaired, and served after the war transporting troops home from Europe. She was placed in reserve in 1946. There were several efforts to have her preserved as a museum, but all failed for lack of funding. The seventh Enterprise was finally scrapped in 1960, and that same year an enormous nuclear carrier became the eighth USS Enterprise.



See also:

Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships: http://www.hazegray.org/danfs/carriers/cv6.htm

Photo: USS Enterprise hit by kamikaze: http://www.hazegray.org/navhist/carriers/images/usa/cv6-3.jpg

Bespoke for Everything Quests - the High Seas

In the fictional Star Trek universe, the USS Enterprise was a Constitution Class Starship presumed to have been launched in the year 2245 (although this date has never been officially established in a show or film thus far). The Enterprise then embarked on a series of 5-year missions to explore the galaxy, first under Captain Robert April from 2245-2250, then three 5-year missions under Captain Christopher Pike from 2250-2265, and finally the celebrated mission under Captain James T. Kirk from 2265-2270 during which the ship was involved in numerous dramatic adventures and became the most famous and recognizable vessel in Starfleet.

In 2270, Kirk was promoted to Admiral and the Enterprise entered dry-dock for a major refit, including a complete overhaul of the ship's hull and an upgrade of nearly every shipboard system. The refit, which was overseen by Captain Willard Decker, was prematurely interrupted when the Enterprise was called into emergency service in order to respond to the threat of the mysterious "V'Ger" space probe.

Following the completion of the refit in 2273, the Enterprise embarked on a second 5-year exploration mission under Captain Kirk, who convinced Starfleet to let him return to his first, best destiny as a starship captain. Following the completion of this mission (which has not been documented as yet in film or on television), the aging ship was designated as a training vessel and placed under the command of Captain Spock, while Kirk once again became an Admiral.

In 2285, after being severely damaged in a battle with the USS Reliant (which had been commandeered by insane genetic superman Khan Noonian Singh), the Enterprise was scheduled to be decommissioned, but was stolen by Kirk and his old crew in order to recover the body of Spock from the Genesis Planet. Upon encountering a Klingon bird-of-prey at the Genesis Planet, Kirk was forced to destroy the undermanned and less-than-fully-functional Enterprise to prevent its capture by the Klingons.

In 2286, in honor of the distinguished service of Kirk and his crew, and especially in recognition of their prevention of the destruction of Earth by the Whale Probe, Starfleet renamed the USS Yorktown as the USS Enterprise, and gave it the registry number NCC-1701-A. Thenceforward, all other ships named Enterprise retained the registry number of the original and most famous USS Enterprise to honor the accomplishments of its remarkable crew, with each new ship appending the next alphabetical letter. To distinguish them from the original Enterprise, these later ships are commonly referred to in conjunction with this alphabetic suffix, hence USS Enterprise-A, USS Enterprise-B, USS Enterprise-C, etc. No other ships are known to have been honored in this way to date.

Specifications (original)

Classification: Heavy Cruiser
Length: 289m
Beam: 132m
Draft: 73
Maximum speed: Warp 8 (Cochrane scale; approximately warp 6.5, new scale)
Complement: 430 (43 officers, 387 enlisted)
Phasers: 3 banks
Photon torpedoes: 2 tubes

Specifications (refit)

Classification: Heavy Cruiser
Length: 305m
Beam: 141m
Draft: 71
Maximum speed: Warp 12 (Cochrane scale; approximately warp 9.3, new scale)
Complement: 500 (72 officers, 428 enlisted)
Phasers: 7 dual phaser emitters, 4 single phaser emitters
Photon torpedoes: 2 tubes

The Starship Enterprise seen in the original 1960s television series was designed by Matt Jefferies and constructed by model builder Don Loos. The refit version first seen in Star Trek: The Motion Picture was principally designed by Andrew Probert, based upon concept art produced by Mike Minor for the abortive television series "Star Trek: Phase II". Other artists who worked on the refit design included Joe Jennings, Douglas Trumbull, and Harold Michelson.

An assimilated writeup by Gordian

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