Thursday, April 14, 2011

Artifact Spotlight: USS BAINBRIDGE Patch, c. 1962

---Joshua Howard, Curatorial Volunteer

1. USS Bainbridge jacket patch, c. 1962
On 15 April 1961, the USS Bainbridge (DLGN-25), the world's first nuclear-powered frigate was launched by the Bethlehem Steel Company in Quincy, Massachusetts. The guided-missile frigate was the fourth U.S. Navy vessel named for Commodore William Bainbridge (1774-1833). Bainbridge was most famous for commanding USS Constitution during her victory over the HMS Java in the War of 1812. This week’s artifact spotlight is a cloth jacket patch with the ship's insignia.

According to the Naval History and Heritage Command, the emblem was primarily designed by EMC Douglas A. Hale, USN. It combines symbolism of the new Bainbridge's nuclear power plant with the figure of a sailing frigate and the motto: Mobility, Endurance, and Versatility.

See more images of the ship at the Naval History and Heritage Command's Online Library of Selected Images.

The patch was donated to the museum by Rear Admiral Joseph H. Wellings who served as the Commandant of the First Naval District (Boston) during the Bainbridge's launching. The artifact is part of a large collection relating to Wellings' career that includes the wrist watch he wore during World War II.
 
Gift of Rear Admiral Joseph H. Wellings, USN                                        Ac. No. 1980.23.11
 
Image courtesy of the Naval War College Museum


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