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DD-599 USS BARTON


Class: Benson
Commissioned 05/29/1942
Length Overall 348' 4"
Extreme Beam: 36' 1'
Standard Displacement tons
Norma Displacement tonsl:
1,620
2,030
Max Draft:
Mean Draft;
17' 4"
11' 9"
Ships Company: Off. 16; Enl.: 240
Armament: Primary: (4) 5"/38 cal. DP
Armament: Secondary: (2) 40mm twin
(7) 20mm
Armament: Torpedo Tubes: (1) 21" quint.
ASW: (6) DCP
Designed Speed: 37.5 knots
Designed Shaft Horse Power: 50,000 shp
Screws: 2
Engine Manufacturer: Beth
Type: Turbine
Fuel (oil) tons 450


             
             COMMANDER IN CHIEF U.S. PACIFIC FLEET  
             SERIAL 00554        February 18, 1943

             Solomon Island Campaign - Battle of the Solomons 
             11-15 November 1942

A16-3/L11                                           November 26, 1942.

From:          Senior Surviving Officer, U.S.S. BARTON (DD599).
To  :          Commander South Pacific Force.
Via :          Commander Destroyer Squadron TWELVE.

Subject:       U.S.S. BARTON (DD599), Report of Action of November
               12-13, 1942.

    1.         U.S.S. BARTON (DD599) was assigned to Task Force 67.4.
Its composition was as follows:

    GROUP ONE:  CUSHING, LAFFEY, STERRETT, O'BANNON.

    GROUP TWO:  SAN FRANCISCO, ATLANTA, PORTLAND, HELENA, JUNEAU.

    GROUP THREE:  ARRON WARD, BARTON, MONSSEN, FLETCHER.

    2.         When the action began our forces were in column in the 
following battle order: CUSHING, LAFFEY, STERRETT, O'BANNON, ATLANTA, 
SAN FRANCISCO, PORTLAND, HELENA, JUNEAU, ARRON WARD, BARTON, MONSSEN, 
FLETCHER.  Synopsis of events as observed by Senior Surviving Officer 
whose battle station was at secondary conn and whose factual 
information concerning times, tactics, and observed damage to the 
enemy is thereby necessarily limited.  Our forces were on a sweep 
through LENGO Channel and searching area bounded by GUADALCANAL,SAVO 
and FLORIDA Islands at speed of 18 knots in single column.  At about

0130 word was received over phones at secondary conn of enemy forces 
in the immediate vicinity.  All hands were at this time put on the 
alert at battle stations.  Without further notification and at 
approximately 0145 the leading ships of our column were observed to 
commence firing to port.  Several batteries of searchlights on 
apparently large enemy ships were trained on our unit from that side. 
The BARTON immediately opened fire with the forward two 5" guns to 
port, and continued firing rapidly, expending approximately 60 rounds.  
The after battery opened fire to port a few seconds later, and fired 
approximately 10 per gun; then became silent and could not be brought 
to bear on enemy ships.  The BARTON was observed to change course to 
port, moving closer to the enemy column, and was seen to launch one 
torpedo in the general direction of the leading enemy ship, following 
a few seconds later by the other four.  It was not observed by the 
writer whether hits were scored on the target or not.  After about 7 
minutes of continued firing the BARTON had stopped to avoid collision 
with an unidentified friendly ship ahead when one torpedo, evidently 
from enemy column to the right, struck the forward fire room on the 
starboard side.  A few seconds later a second torpedo struck the 
forward engine room and the ship broke in two and sank in 
approximately 10 seconds.  Survivors from the BARTON are few and the 
total number is not known at the time.  

               It is estimated that 40 enlisted men and 2 officers are 
all that remain.  Of the enlisted survivors, approximately all were 5" 
gun crews from Nos. 1,3 and 4 guns and machine gunners on the after 
deck house.  Two men only are known to have escaped from the interior 
of the ship.  Of the officer survivors both were stationed on the 
after deck house.  One, Lieutenant (jg) WILBUR EMANUEL QUINT, O-V(G), 
U.S.N.R. was machine gun control officer, and the other, Lieutenant 
(jg) HARLOWE MNNING WHITE, D-V(G), U.S.N.R., the writer of this 
letter, was secondary control officer at secondary conn.  The majority 
of the survivors were wounded by fragments and burned; some near the 
fireroom being burned by steam.  Shortly after the BARTON's 
destruction, one of our destroyers came through the group of survivors 
at high speed.  It is know to have injured several, and more were 
injured by depth charge explosions in the vicinity.  Survivors were 
picked up by rescue crews from the PORTLAND and in Higgin's boats from 
GUADALCANAL.  It is believed that a few reached GUADALCANAL by 
swimming ashore.  Their fate or whereabouts is unknown.

                                     Harlowe M. White,
                                     Lieut. (jg) D-V(G), U.S.N.R.


History of the U.S.S. BARTON DD-599





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