Do You Know When These US Navy Ships Were Commissioned?

By: Jacqueline Samaroo
Image: Stocktrek Images/Stocktrek Images/Getty Images

About This Quiz

You won't get sea sick from this quiz!  No one will lash you to the mast, either ... heck, most of these ships don't even HAVE masts in the sailing sense.

The United States Navy has reasonably strict classifications schemes and nomenclature when it comes to the wide array of vessels that they have commissioned throughout their history. The names of all commissioned ships of the United States Navy start with "USS", which simply stands for United States Ship. When it come to ships, the United States Navy has come a relatively long way from its moderately humble beginnings to the modern powerhouse that it is today. 

In fact, the United States Navy is currently, without a doubt, the world's largest navy when it comes to ships (having approximately half of the world's aircraft carriers). Ships in the United States Navy have oftentimes been iconic on a global scale; being the first to achieve milestones, setting records, and leading in advancements. In this quiz, we've taken a handful of U.S. Navy ships from the past few centuries and put them together to see if you can correctly guess when they were commissioned! So, let's jump right in and get started!

The USS George Washington (SSBN-598) is a United States Navy ship that was originally commissioned in 1959. It is the third to be named in honor of George Washington and also the country’s first operational ballistic missile submarine.

This is the USS Constitution, a 44-gun frigate that was commissioned in 1797 and nicknamed “Old Ironsides”. It is notable for being the oldest commissioned naval vessel in the world that is still afloat today

The USS Arizona (BB-39) is a Pennsylvania-class battleship that was originally commissioned in 1916. It was destroyed during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor during World War II, leading to the loss of over 1,000 officers and crewmen.

This is the USS Missouri (BB-63), an Iowa-class battleship that was commissioned in 1944. It is most notable for being the location of the surrender of the Empire of Japan during World War II.

The USS Archerfish (SS-311) is a Balao-class submarine that was originally commissioned in 1943. After decades of service and awards (at least seven battle stars) the ship was retired by the US Navy and then sunk by torpedo.

This is the USS Reuben James (DD-245), a Clemson-class destroyer that was commissioned in 1920. It was attacked and sunk by a German submarine near Iceland, over a month before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and The United States’ direct involvement in World War II.

The USS Samuel B. Roberts is an Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigate that was originally commissioned in 1986. It was damaged by an Iranian mine in 1988 and had to be carried from Dubai to Rhode Island by the semi-submersible, heavy-lift ship, Mighty Servant 2.

This is the USS Enterprise (CV-6), a Yorktown-class aircraft carrier that was commissioned in 1938. It is one of the most prolific US Navy ships and is actually the most decorated U.S. ship of World War II.

The USS Long Beach (CGN-9) is a nuclear-powered guided missile cruiser that was originally commissioned in 1961. It holds the distinction of being the first nuclear-powered surface combatant in the world.

This is the USS Indianapolis (CA-35), a Portland-class heavy cruiser that was commissioned in 1932. It holds the somber record of having the worst loss of life at sea in U.S. Navy history, with hundreds going down with the ship and many more dying from dehydration, exposure, shark attacks and much more.

The USS Hornet (CV-8) is a Yorktown-class aircraft carrier, that was originally commissioned in 1941. It is perhaps best remembered for its role in the Battle of Midway and the Doolittle Raid.

This is the USS Cole (DDG-67), a Arleigh Burke-class destroyer that was commissioned in 1996. It was attacked by al-Qaeda suicide bombers in 2000 but survived and is currently in active service.

The USS Washington (BB-56) is a North Carolina-class battleship that was originally commissioned in 1941. It is notable for having suffered no losses to hostile action throughout the entirety of World War II.

This is the USS Skate (SSN-578), a Skate-class submarine that was commissioned in 1957. It is notable for being the first ship to surface at the North Pole and also the first to make a completely submerged trans-Atlantic crossing.

The USS Triton (SSRN-586) is a nuclear-powered submarine that was originally commissioned in 1959. It is the only non-Soviet submarine that was powered by two nuclear reactors and also the first vessel to make a submerged circumnavigation of the world.

This is the USS Nautilus (SSN-571), a nuclear-powered submarine that was commissioned in 1954. It is notable for several reasons; it is the first operational nuclear-powered submarine and also the first submarine to complete a submerged transit of the North Pole.

The USS Gato (SS-212) is a Gato-class diesel-electric submarine that was originally commissioned in 1941. This ship (and the rest of its class) was one of the most successful and influential vessels in the US Navy in World War II.

This is the USS Phoenix (CL-46), a Brooklyn-class cruiser that was commissioned in 1938. It was eventually sold to Argentina in 1951 and then sunk by the British in the Falklands War.

The USS Langley (CV-1) is a Langley-class aircraft carrier that was originally commissioned in 1913. It holds the distinction of being the very first aircraft carrier in the US Navy.

This is the USS Stark (FFG-31), an Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigate that was commissioned in 1982. It was devastatingly struck by Iraqi anti-ship missiles in 1987; which is to this day, the only successful anti-ship missile attack on a U.S. Navy warship.

The USS Vincennes (CG-49) is a Ticonderoga-class cruiser that was originally commissioned in 1985. In 1988 it misidentified Iran Air Flight 655 as an enemy fighter and shot it down, killing 290 civilians (274 passengers and 16 crew members).

This is the USS South Carolina (BB-26), a South Carolina-class battleship that was commissioned in 1910. It is notable for being the first American modern dreadnought battleship.

The USS Batfish (SS-310) is a Balao-class submarine that was originally commissioned in 1943. One of its notable achievements is the fact that it sank three Japanese submarines within a five-day period during World War II.

This is the USS Connecticut (BB-18), a Connecticut-class battleship that was commissioned in 1906. It was notably the flagship for the Great White Fleet.

The USS Olympia (C-6) is a protected cruiser that was originally commissioned in 1895. In present day, the vessel has been preserved as a museum ship.

This is the USS Panay (PR-5), a river gunboat that was commissioned in 1928. It was sunk by Japanese aircraft in 1937; however, the Japanese apologized and paid an indemnity, claiming that they had thought it was a Chinese vessel (who they were currently fighting in the Second Sino-Japanese War).

The USS Holland (SS-1) is a military submarine that was originally commissioned in 1900. It notably holds the distinction of being the very first submarine that was commissioned in the U.S. Navy.

This is the USS Liberty (AGTR-5), a Belmont-class technical research ship that was commissioned in 1964. It notably participated in several key missions for the National Security Agency in the 1960s.

The USS England (DE-635) is a Buckley-class destroyer escort that was originally commissioned in 1943. It was actually named after Ensign John C. England, who was killed during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.

This is the USS Maine (ACR-1), an armored cruiser that was commissioned in 1895. It notably sank during the Cuban revolt against Spain and was one of the primary events that initiated the Spanish–American War.

The USS Thresher (SSN-593) is a Thresher-class submarine that was originally commissioned in 1961. It accidentally sank during deep-diving tests in the Atlantic (off the coast of Boston, Massachusetts) in 1963.

This is the USS Long Island (CVE-1), a Long Island-class escort carrier that was commissioned in 1941. It is notable for being the first of over 100 escort carriers built by the U.S. during World War II.

The USS Essex (CV-9) is an Essex-class aircraft carrier that was originally commissioned in 1942. It and the rest of its family of vessels were a notable part of the U.S. Navy's forces during World War II.

This is the USS Greeneville (SSN-772), a Los Angeles-class submarine that was commissioned in 1996. Its name is a direct reference to the town of Greeneville in Tennessee.

The USS Nimitz (CVN-68) is a Nimitz-class aircraft carrier that was originally commissioned in 1975. It is currently still in active service and has earned the nickname “Old Salt”.

This is the USS Pueblo (AGER-2), a Banner-class environmental research ship, that was commissioned in 1945. It was operated by the U.S. as a Navy intelligence spy ship and was captured by North Korean forces after it was found off the coast of the country.

The USS Utah (BB-31) is a Florida-class battleship that was originally commissioned in 1911. It is notable for being the second of only two Florida class of dreadnought battleships that were ever created.

This is the USS Maddox (DD-731), an Allen M. Sumner-class destroyer that was commissioned in 1944. It was notably sold to Taiwan in 1973 and then finally decommissioned in 1985 and then scrapped.

The USS Juneau (CL-52) is an Atlanta-class light cruiser that was originally commissioned in February of 1942. It had an extremely short-lived existence, being sunk by a torpedo later that same year (13 November 1942).

This is the USS Enterprise (CVN-65), an Enterprise-class aircraft carrier that was commissioned in 1961. It notably holds the distinction of being the very first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier.

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