The USS Alabama (BB-60), a South Dakota-class battleship that served in WWII, measures 680 feet from stem to stern, half as long as the Empire State Building is tall, and 108 feet at the widest point. She was decommissioned in 1947, fully retired in 1962 and, in 1965, became a museum ship.
The “Mighty A” was designed specifically for providing shore bombardment and anti-aircraft defense for aircraft carriers. She initially operated along the US East coast, then in the North Atlantic, and finally gained notoriety for her role in helping to take over Japanese-held islands in the Pacific.
Above the waterline, the steel side armor is just over a foot thick. Everything about it is so massive that it’s hard to believe that the ship was capable of speeds over 30 miles per hour.
Does this sleeping arrangement make you feel a bit claustrophobic?
What about this one? With 2,500 men stationed on this ship, bunks are squeezed in everywhere:
Like a floating village, the USS Alabama had all the basic amenities including a store, mail room, jail, print shop, laundry room, and chapel:
Candy-colored missiles! These bad boys are huge:
The USS Alabama was armed with 129 guns in various sizes [the armament breakdown is here, if that’s something you can decipher]:
The ship is now the centerpiece of the USS Alabama Battleship Memorial Park in Mobile, which includes the USS Drum and a collection of military aircraft ranging from before WWII through the Cold War era. The park is one of Alabama’s most visited attractions. For more details of the ship’s specs and history, check out this resource.
Anyway, this is an absolutely fascinating place; I learned more about life in wartime than I’d expected to.