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USS Midway Museum - San Diego, California


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USS Midway Historical Overview

Midway.png.b517b9dfc445e5c2b941bf59822d007e.pngThe USS Midway was the longest-serving aircraft carrier in the 20th century. Named after the climactic Battle of Midway in June 1942. Midway was built in only 17 months. It missed World War II by one week when commissioned on September 10, 1945. Midway was the first in a three-ship class of large carriers that featured an armored flight deck and a powerful air group of 120 planes.

From the beginning of its service, the Midway played key roles in the Cold War. In 1946, it became the first American carrier to operate in the midwinter sub-Arctic, developing new flight deck procedures. Midway became the only ship to launch a captured German V-2 rocket the following year. The trial’s success became the dawn of naval missile warfare. Just two years after that, Midway launched a large patrol plane on a marathon flight to demonstrate that a carrier could deliver atomic bombs.

Midway served with the Atlantic Fleet for 10 years, making seven deployments to European waters, patrolling “the soft underbelly” of NATO. A round-the-world cruise took Midway to the West Coast in 1955, where it was rebuilt with an angled deck to improve jet operations.

Small_New_logo_2024.png.f6da898f9db66c46929dd2e733ffc10a.pngMidway’s first combat deployment came in 1965, flying strikes against North Vietnam. Midway aircraft shot down three MiGs, including the first air kill of the war. However, 17 Midway aircraft were lost to enemy fire during this cruise. In 1966, Midway was decommissioned for a four-year overhaul.

Over a chaotic two-day period during the fall of Saigon in April 1975, Midway was a floating base for large Air Force helicopters that evacuated more than 3,000 desperate refugees during Operation Frequent Wind. It was the U.S. Navy’s largest humanitarian mission to date.

Midway was laid down on 27 October 1943 in Shipway 11 at Newport News Shipbuilding Co., Newport News, Virginia; launched on 20 March 1945, sponsored by Mrs. Bradford William Ripley, Jr.; and commissioned on 10 September 1945 (eight days after the Surrender of Japan) with Captain Joseph F. Bolger in command.

Restoring One of the U.S.'s Biggest Aircraft Carriers







Midway at sea








Location - 

910 N. Harbor Drive
San Diego, CA 92101

Museum Links -




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I'll be visiting this museum this week while I'm down in San Diego to watch my son graduate USMC boot camp. I'll post some pictures when I get a chance

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