The USS COLUMBUS (CG-12), a Baltimore class cruiser, was commissioned on 8 JUN 1945, as CA-74. Commissioned too late for combat in world War II, performed post war occupation duty in the Far East, then returned to the U.S. in April 1946. After a 1947 Far East deployment and subsequent overhaul, COLUMBUS joined the Atlantic Fleet. From 1948 thru 1955 COLUMBUS regularly deployed to the "MED". In 1956 she returned to the Pacific Fleet and made three "West Pacs" before beginning the conversion to a guided missile cruiser in May 1959. De-designated GC-12, CULUMBUS was recommissioned on 1 DEC 1962 and continued with the Pacific Fleet. COLUMBUS returned to the Atlantic Fleet, where she finished her service career, in late 1965. Over the next eight years COLUMBUS deployed to the Mediterranean seven times. USS COLUMBUS served her country, as CG-12, for 12 years, 1 month and 30 days, until decommissioned on 31 JAN 1975. The hulk of USS COLUMBUS sold was scrapped by Union Minerals & Alloys Corp. in 1977-78.
The USS COLUMBUS (CG-12) deployment history and significant events of her service career follow:
USS COLUMBUS (CG-12)
third Columbus (CA-74) was launched 30 November 1944 by Bethlehem
Steel Co., Quincy, Mass.; sponsored by Mrs. Edward G. Meyers, mother of two sons killed in the war; and commissioned at Boston on 8 June 1945, Captain Allen Hobbs in command.
Following a shakedown cruise to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in September, and a repair availability at Boston in November, the cruiser sailed for the Pacific and passed through the Panama Canal on 10 December. After brief stops at Pearl Harbor and Buckner Bay, Okinawa, Columbus reached Tsingtao, China, on 13 January 1946 for occupation duty. Serving as flagship for Commander, Cruiser Division One, the warship visited Shanghai, China, as well as Sasebo and Yokosuka, Japan, during the hectic spring months. While in Japanese waters, the cruiser participated in the 1 April Operation "Road's End," the sinking of twenty-four Japanese submarines captured at the end of the war, including the submarine I-58, credited with sinking the American cruiser Indianapolis (CA-*) in the last days of the war. Sailing for home the next day, Columbus remained in west coast waters through the end of the year. The warship made a second Far Eastern cruise from 15 January to 12 June 1947, again serving as cruiser flagship in Chinese waters.
west coast operations and an overhaul at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Columbus cleared
April 1948 to join the Atlantic Fleet, arriving at Norfolk, Va., 19 May. Columbus made two
cruises as flagship of Commander-in-Chief,
Naval Forces Eastern Atlantic and Mediterranean,
from 13 September 1948 to 15
December 1949 and from 12 June 1950 to 5 October 1951, and one as flagship of
Supreme Allied Commander, Atlantic,
during parts of NATO Operation "Mainbrace" from 25 August to 29 September 1952. She cruised
in the Mediterranean from October 1952
through January 1953, serving part of
that time as flagship of the 6th Fleet.
Now flagship of Cruiser Division 6, she returned to the Mediterranean from
September 1954 to January 1955.
Between deployments, Columbus received necessary overhauls and carried out training operations
along the east coast and in the
to the Pacific Fleet, Columbus cleared Boston 8 November 1955 for Long Beach, Calif., where she arrived 2 December. Just a month later, on 5
January 1956, she sailed for
Yokosuka, Japan, and operated with
the 7th Fleet until she returned to Long Beach 8 July. Columbus made two more cruises to the Far East in
1957 and 1958. During the late summer of 1958, her presence was a reminder of American strength and interest as she patrolled the Taiwan Straits during
the crisis brought on by the renewed shelling of the offshore islands by the Chinese Communists. On 8 May 1959,
Columbus went out of commission at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard to begin her conversion to a guided
missile cruiser, and she was
reclassified CG-12, 30 September 1959.
Recommissioned 1 December 1962, Columbus served in the Atlantic Fleet for the next fourteen years, decommissioning at Portsmouth, Virginia, on 31 January 1975. Struck from the Navy list on 9 August 1976, the hulk was sold for scrap to Consolidated Andy Inc., Brownsville, Texas, on 3 October 1977.
[Note: The above USS COLUMBUS (CG-12) history may, or may not, contain text provided by crew members of the USS COLUMBUS (CG-12), or by other non-crew members, and text from the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships]