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NEW ORLEANS ' Heritage
The Amphibious Assault Ship NEW ORLEANS
KLPH IU 1S named after the battle of New Orleans Cin the
war of 18123
The c1ty of New Orleans a major sea and river port
on the Mississippi River and Gulf of Mexico has played an
important role in America s military history The cityls
heritage has filled the pages of American history since it's
earliest days and was the site of the battle of New Orleans,
in the war of 1812 witnessing the defeat of a large British
amp"1b ous expedition by the delaying tactics of a small
fleet of gunboats and two sloops under the command of
Commodore Danlel T Patterson Commander of the
naval stat on of New Orleans Thls delaying action
enabled the forces of Andrew Jackson to select a desirable
down r1ver defense and await the arrival of needed rein-
forcements The New Orleans victory preserved U.S.
national honor self respect and prestige at home and
New Orleans again played a major role in American
military history during the C1V1l War When Farragut's
fleet passed the forts guarding New Orleans on 24 July
1862 to capture New Orleans the fate of the Confederacy
was sealed assuring that the United States would not
become divided The delta of the Mississippi was open to
the naval union assault force which Joined the Union forces
coming south in the great pincer which severed the
Confederacy. "Thus" reported Secretary of the Navy, Gi-
deon Welles, "the great southern depot of the trade of the
immense central emporium of the wealthy region was
restored to national authority, the mouth of the Mississip-
pi was under our control and an outlet for the great west to
the ocean was secured."
The first NEW ORLEANS ship, a 3,430 ton cruiser,
was placed in commission on March 18, 1898. The cruiser
NEW ORLEANS served with distinction in the Spanish-
American War and in World War I and remained in com-
mission until 1920.
The second NEW ORLEANS ship KCA-32j was a
10,000 ton cruiser, commissioned on February 15, 1934.
The cruiser operated with the Atlantic Fleet until 1936
when it was assigned as a fleet unit of the Pacific Fleet.
Surviving the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, the NEW
ORLEANS went on to participate in a total of seventeen
engagements in the Pacific Campaign during World War
II and was decommissioned in 1946.
USS NEW ORLEANS KLPH-IU, an amphibious
assault ship, is the third in line to bear the name NEW
ORLEANS and carry on the heritage of its valiant
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Seven Years Of Service
NEW ORLEANS' keel was laid at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard
on 1 March 1966, and she was commissioned on 16 November 1968. After
commissioning and completion of final outfitting, NEW ORLEANS
proceeded to her homeport, San Diego, California, arriving on 3 March
1969. Upon her arrival in San Diego she became flagship for Amphibious
NEW ORLEANS is a floating helicopter base with a landing area
602 feet long and 105 feet wide, and can support 20 helicopters and 2,000
marines for extended operations anywhere in the world. NEW
ORLEANS is specifically designed to support the vertical envelopment
technique in amphibious warfare. When employing this technique, more
than 1,000 combat ready marines are airlifted by helicopter several miles
inland to tactically engage enemy troops. NEW ORLEANS also has a
large hospital on board with over 200 beds and supporting facilities to
care for patients.
The ship deployed on 1 August 1969 for the Western Pacific and
operations as a member of the SEVENTH Fleet. While engaged in these
Far East operations she was the flagship for Amphibious Ready Group
BRAVO. NEW ORLEANS maintained a high degree of fleet readiness
by conducting numerous amphibious exercises.
In October 1969 NEW ORLEANS was host for the Eighth Viet-
namese Awards Ceremony. Also during October, NEW ORLEANS par-
ticipated in Keystone Cardinal operations.
In March 1970 NEW ORLEANS completed her Western Pacific
deployment, having participated in five amphibious exercises, conducted
many weeks of amphibious ready group maneuvers in the South China
Sea, and made port visits to Hong Kong, Manila, Subic Bay, Okinawa
In May 1970 NEW ORLEANS was Amphibious Forces Pacific
representative for Armed Forces Day in San Francisco, conducting a
highly successful open house in that city.
In June 1970 NEW ORLEANS participated in one of the largest
amphibious exercises ever conducted on the West Coast, MEBLEX 1-70.
In August 1970 NEW ORLEANS became the flagship for Com-
mander FIRST Fleet. It was during this month that she provided sup-
port for President Nixon's visit to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico and made a
port call at Acapulco.
NEW ORLEANS was selected as primary recovery ship for Apollo
14 and prepared for that mission during the fall of 1970.
In january 1971 NEW ORLEANS departed San Diego for Hawaii
and the beginning of the Apollo 14 mission. On 9 February 1971 NEW
ORLEANS recovered astronauts Alan Shepard, Stuart Roosa and Ed
Mitchell 900 miles south of American Samoa.
On 1 May 1971 NEW ORLEANS commenced her 1971 Western
Pacific deployment. Several exercises were held during the deployment.
One of these was a convoy exercise, a multi-nation cruising exercise
simulating a convoy under combat conditions. Another exercise on the
island of Mindoro, Republic of the Philippines.
NEW ORLEANS completed her deployment in November and com-
menced preparations for her February shipyard overhaul in Long Beach.
NEW ORLEANS completed her shipyard overhaul and began preparing
for her next deployment in July 1972.
On 17 july 1972 NEW ORLEANS commenced her 1972 Western
Pacific deployment as the flagship for Amphibious Squadron THREE
and later Amphibious Ready Group ALFA. During late july and early
August NEW ORLEANS and her embarked units participated in the
Philippine Flood Relief Operations, earning the Philippine Unit Citation.
NEW ORLEANS patrolled the coast of Vietnam until early
February. At this time she became flagship for Commander Task Force
78 and the control ship for Operation End Sweep. CTF 78 was tasked
with de-mining operations for the coast and harbors of North Vietnam.
NEW ORLEANS returned to San Diego on 13 May 1973 to prepare
for the recovery of astronauts Alan Bean, Owen Garriott and jack
Lousman, the crew of SKYLAB III. On 25 September 1973 NEW
ORLEANS recovered the astronauts 190 miles southwest of San Diego.
NEW ORLEANS next deployment began 4january 1974 and begun
with the recovery of Gerald Carr, Edward Gibson and William Pogue,
the crew of SKYLAB IV. On 8 February 1974 the astronauts were safely
recovered 250 miles southwest of San Diego. During the course of this
deployment the ship visited Singapore, Manila, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
She returned to San Diego on 31 August 1974.
On 5 july 1975 NEW ORLEANS set sail for the recovery of the
American crew of the Apollo-Soyuz Test Project. Astronauts Thomas
Stafford, Donald Slayton and Vance Brand were recovered 380 miles
west of Hawaii. NEW ORLEANS continued on her deployment and
returned to San Diego on 23 March 1976.
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