visit the official site of the
USS Wyoming, SSBN-742 to left.
The present USS Wyoming is the fourth ship (the present USS Wyoming is properly referred to as a boat, not a "ship", ships are on top of the water, submarines are boats) in the U.S. Navy named the Wyoming. For information as to the present ship click on its website above. The first, a wooden-hulled steam sloop named after the Wyoming Valley in eastern Pennsylvania, was launched in 1859. In 1862, under the command of Comdr. David Stockton McDougal, the Wyoming joined the hunt for the elusive CSS Alabama. In 1863 in a confrontation with the Empire of Japan in the Straits of Shimonoseki, the Wyoming protected American treaty rights in the western Pacific.
In 1873, under the command of William B. Cushing, below right, the Wyoming was dispatched with another ship to Sandiego de Cuba as a result of the capture of the American flag sidewheel steamer Virginius by the Spanish cruiser Tornado off Jamaica and the execution of its captain, Joseph Fry and 53 of the crew and passengers, eight of whom were Amerian citizens. Pen and Ink sketch of execution above right.
William B. Cushing, lower right.
The Appearance of the Wyoming resulted in the release of the remaining 51 sailors and the return of the Virginius to its owners. The Virginius Affair resulted in realization of the necessity of upgrading the Navy and distrust of the Spanish in Cuba which, in turn, had an impact 25 years later on public perception of blame for the sinking the the Maine. It was later discovered that, in fact, the Virginius was owned by Cubans and was not entitled to American flag status. On 30 October 1882 the Wyoming was decommissioned. On 9 May 1892 she was sold.
The second USS Wyoming was the United States Monitor Wyoming, pictured to the left, was authorized in 1898, launched in 1900, at the Union Iron Works in San Francisco. Her sponsor was Miss Hattie Warren, daughter of Wyoming U.S. Senator Francis E. Warren. In 1908 she became the first U.S. ship to be converted from coal to oil. The front turret was added approximately the same year (compare photos below with earlier photo to left). Her name was changed to the USS Cheyenne on 1 January 1909, in order to permit a third vessel to be named the USS Wyoming. In 1913, she was refitted as a submarine tender. The Cheyenne was decommissioned in 1920, recommissioned and decommissioned for the final time on 1 June 1926, struck from the Navy list on 25 Jan 1937 and sold for scrap on 20 April 1939. Photo of the Cheyenne in dry dock below.
The present USS Wyoming, pictured at the top of the page, may not, however, be the last. The television program Star Trek has predicted the existence of a USS Wyoming in space, just as Capt. Cook's HMS Endeavour finds its counterpart in the space shuttle program. Pictured below is the Mediterranean Class Starship of which the Starship USS Wyoming mentioned in the episode Flashback, will be a part in the 24th Century.
(The Navy Hymn)
Eternal Father, strong to save,
O Christ! Whose voice the water heard
Most Holy Spirit! Who didst brood
O Trinity of love and power!