Clemson-class destroyer

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The Clemson- and Wickes-class were a series of 267 (156 Clemson-class and 111 Wickes-class) destroyers which served primarily with the United States Navy from World War I through World War II. These classes along with the preceding Caldwell-class were collectively known as the Town-class in British and Canadian service.


Rank I

Vehicles are listed in order of refit year, not build year


Authorized by the Naval Appropriation Act of 1916, which called for a powerful Pacific and Atlantic fleet, the Wickes and Clemson classes were meant to screen the larger vessels of the navy with an initial order of 50 Wickes-class destroyers, though this was increased in response to the threat of U-boats, with a total of 267 ships of the two classes being built, though only a few were finished in time for World War 1. In the interwar period, many ships were converted for various other roles, such as minelayers or transports.

In 1940, under the Destroyers for Bases Agreement, the US transferred 50 Caldwell, Wickes, and Clemson-class destroyers to the British Navy in exchange for bases in North America and the West Indies, these 50 destroyers would then be collectively referred to as the Town-class. The most famous exploit of the class was done by HMS Campbeltown on the 29 March 1942, where disguised as a German ship and loaded with explosives, rammed the dock gates of the Normandie dry dock at St Nazaire and exploded, putting the only dry dock on the Atlantic capable of repairing the German battleships out of action for the rest of the war.

USA destroyers
Clemson-class  USS Welborn C. Wood · USS Barker · USS Litchfield
Farragut-class  USS Aylwin
Porter-class  USS Porter · USS Phelps · USS Moffett
Somers-class  USS Somers · USS Davis
Fletcher-class  USS Fletcher · USS Bennion · USS Cowell
Allen M. Sumner-class  USS Sumner
Gearing-class  USS Gearing · USS Frank Knox
Mitscher-class  USS Mitscher · USS Wilkinson

Britain destroyers
Town-class  HMS Churchill · HMS Montgomery
V-class  HMS Valhalla · HMS Vega · HMS Verdun
G-class  HMS Grafton · ORP Garland
Hunt-class  HMS Calpe · HMS Brissenden
Tribal-class  HMCS Haida · HMS Eskimo · HMS Mohawk
J-class  HMS Jervis
K-class  HMS Kelvin
N-class  HMAS Nepal
Battle-class  HMS Armada · HMS Cadiz · HMAS Tobruk
Daring-class  HMS Daring · HMS Diamond · HMS Diana