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USS Ingraham (DD-444)

The USS Ingraham (DD-444) served in the U.S. Navy in the early 20th century and then was sunk in a collision off Nova Scotia. She was named for Captain Duncan Nathaniel Ingraham who served with the U.S. Navy and as Chief of the Bureau of Ordnance. Ingraham was a member of the Gleaves class of destroyers.

Construction

Ingraham was laid down by the Charleston Navy Yard in November 1939, launched in February 1941, and commissioned in July with Lieutenant Commander W.H. Haynsworth, Jr., in command. Carrying a crew of 208, Ingraham was 348 feet, four inches long, with a displacement of 2,395 tons, and was armed with four five-inch anti-aircraft guns, six one-half inch machine guns, and ten 21-inch torpedo tubes. She was driven by Westinghouse geared turbines supporting a cruising speed of 35 knots, and had a range of 6,500 nautical miles at 12 knots.

Naval History

Ingraham conducted routine operations along the east coast of the United States and then was assigned to escort duty in December 1941 following the attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor. In 1942, Ingraham expanded her supply escort duty to operate over a range between the United States and Iceland and the United Kingdom to support the Allies in Europe. Ingraham constantly faced the danger of German U-boats in the Atlantic while serving as an escort to Europe as well as to the Panama Canal.

In August 1942, Ingraham investigated a maritime collision involving Buck and a merchant ship off Nova Scotia, and herself collided with oil tanker Chemung in the heavy fog. The impact caused depth charges inside Ingraham to explode and the destroyer sank, with the loss of all hands save 11 men. Ingraham was struck from the Navy Register in September 1942.

Asbestos Risk on the USS Ingraham (DD-444)

Ingraham served for only a year and seven months before she met her tragic end. While she contained asbestos in most areas, the majority of her crew was lost after the collision with Buck. That means those most likely to have been harmed by the asbestos aboard Ingraham were those that built her. Navy shipyards are frequently cited as a source of asbestos exposure for victims of mesothelioma.

Sources

Sources

Haze Gray & Underway. Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. DD-444.
http://www.hazegray.org/danfs/destroy/dd444txt.htm

NavSource Naval History, USS Ingraham (DD-444).
http://www.navsource.org/archives/05/444.htm

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