The 1930s saw the Navy Yard begin construction of destroyers, a class of ship which would become its specialty until its closure in 1974. The Sims-class USS O'Brien (DD-415) was placed in commission in March 1940 under the command of Lt. Cdr. Carl F. Espe, who would later return to the yard as Commandant of the First Naval District. Named for a group of Machias, Mass., brothers who captured a Royal Navy cutter in December 1775, the O'Brien was torpedoed off Espiritu Santo by the Japanese submarine I-15 on Sept. 15, 1942. Temporary repairs were made, but on Oct. 19, while off Samoa en route back to San Francisco, the ship foundered and sank, fortunately with no loss of live.
Development of ship building at the Charlestown Navy Yard-USS O'Brien
Last updated: February 26, 2015