USS Indiana (BB-58)

Indiana in the Chesapeake Bay, during her trials period in September, 1942. The compact layout of the South Dakota-class is well shown in this photo. US Navy photo.

Ship Class
Ship Type
Laid Down

The second South Dakota-class battleship, and the fourth ship to bear the name, USS Indiana (BB-58) commissioned 30 April, 1942. She spent most of the year fitting out, and arrived in the Pacific in November. Indiana was assigned to the Solomons, taking over for her damaged sister South Dakota, and supported the American drive north. Bombardment, picket, and convoy duty followed, with her first AA kill logged in November, 1943, while supporting the invasion of Tarawa in the central Pacific. She collided with the battleship Washington on the night of 1 February, 1944, resulting in both battleships being put out of action for several months. Indiana returned in time for the invasion of the Marianas in June, providing gunfire support for the landings, and AA cover for the carriers during the Battle of the Philippine Sea. She missed the invasion of Leyte in the Philippines, due to being sent home for a refit, returning to the central Pacific for the invasion of Iwo Jima in February, 1945, and supported air strikes against Japan the following month. From late March, Indiana provided main battery and AA fire support for the invasion of Okinawa. She rotated out in May, for more strikes on Japan, returned to Okinawa briefly in June, and then supported strikes against Japan through the end of the War, bombarding industrial targets with her main battery several times. Post war, Indiana helped process liberated prisoners of war, before heading for the US with a malfunctioning propeller shaft. After a month of repairs, she was prepared for inactivation, and was placed in reserve in September, 1946. Fully decommissioned in 1947, Indiana remained in the reserve fleet until 1962, and was sold for scrap the following year.

Bonus Photos

Indiana at Pearl Harbor after her collision with Washington in February, 1944. Dockyard photo shows the temporary patch over the damage that had been placed for the voyage to Pearl. Photo in the collection of the US Navy History & Heritage Command.