USS Squalus/Sailfish BELL !

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Posted by baja haha on February 04, 2010 at 16:47:40:

In 1939 the newly commissioned US Navy submarine the USS Squalus sunk off New Hampshire . A little more than 2 dozen officers and enlisted men became trapped in the aft compartment and immediately perished. The remainder of the crew was trapped in inside the submarine in 200 feet of water.

The US Navy immediately began the deepest salvage operation up to that time ever attempted. The remaining crew members were rescued and the Squalus was salvaged, decommissioned, repaired and recommission in May 1940 as the USS Sailfish . It served through out WW11 and was eventually scrapped in 1948.

There are several accounts of the sinking and salvaging of the Squalus/Sailfish. Two books that come to mind are
" Men under the Sea;" Edward Elsberg Dodd Mead Co, 1939 NYC
It is recognized that few have access to a 71 year old book.....however,

"The Terrible hours;" Peter Maas, Harper Collins 1999, ISBN )-0-06-019480-4 is a newer book and also documents the Squalus . This was a popular book and it can possibly be found on the used book market.

The bell for the original Squalus was probably melted down during WW11, however the bell of the USS Sailfish recently discoverd and is now safely on display at the Estrella War Bird museum in Atascadero on the central coast. of California

A detailed account of the Sailfish bell can be read in Lon Allen's column:


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