Montgomery V (Destroyer No. 121)
(DD‑121; dp. 1,090; l. 314'5"; b. 31'8"; dr. 8'8"; s. 35 k.; cpl. 113; a. 4 4", 2 3", 12 21" tt., 1 dcp., 2 dct.; cl. Wickes)
During the French and Indian War, Richard Montgomery, born in northern Ireland 23 December 1739, fought at Quebec with Wolfe, and in the campaign against the Spanish West Indies. He returned to America in 1772, purchased an estate on the Hudson River, and married the daughter of Robert R. Livingston.
When war with England broke out, Montgomery sided with the Americans and was commissioned brigadier general in the fall of 1775. He succeeded General Schuyler in command of the expedition against Canada, captured Fort St. John's and Fort Chambly, and entered Montreal in triumph. Montgomery was killed by British artillery during an unsuccessful assault on Quebec, 31 December 1775.
The fifth Montgomery (Destroyer No. 121), named for Rear Adm. John B. Montgomery (1794‑1873), built by Newport News Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Co., launched 23 March 1918; sponsored by Mrs. Andrew Jones, a descendent of Admiral Montgomery; and commissioned 26 July 1918, Lt. Comdr. W. R. Purnell in command.
Following an east coast shakedown, Montgomery left Hampton Roads 25 August 1918 for her first antisubmarine patrol, alternating such patrols with coastal escort duty until the close of World War I. She conducted training and fleet maneuvers from Maine to Cuba until 19 July 1919, when she departed Hampton Roads for west coast duty.
Montgomery arrived San Diego 7 August to join Destroyer Squadron 4, Pacific Fleet. For the next 31⁄2 years she took part in fleet operations from Alaska to Panama, then on 17 March 1922 began inactivation at San Diego, where she decommissioned 6 June 1922.
Redesignated DM‑17, 5 January 1961, Montgomery was converted to a light minelayer and recommissioned 20 August 1931. In December she sailed to Pearl Harbor, her base until 14 June 1937, when she returned to San Diego, there to decommission 7 December 1937 and go into reserve.
With world tension increasing on the eve of World War II, Montgomery reactivated, recommissioning 25 September 1939. She trained for possible war service and completed several towing assignments on the west coast until 3 December 1940 when she sailed for her new home port, Pearl Harbor.
At Pearl Harbor during the Japanese attack 7 December 1941, Montgomery immediately began antisubmarine patrols in the approaches to the vital base, as well as interisland convoy duty. Departing Hawaii 11 April 1942 for Suva, Fiji, Montgomery began 16 months operating from Suva, Espiritu Santo, and Noumea for escort and minelaying operations in the southwest Pacific, aiding In the struggle for the Solomons. One interruption to this service was 22 September to 12 November, when she sailed north to lay mines in the Aleutians in preparation for the recapture of Attu and Kiska.
While laying a minefield off Guadalcanal on the night of 24 to 25 August 1943, Montgomery collided with light minelayer Preble, losing 20 feet of her bow. She made temporary repairs at Tulagi and Espiritu Santo, then sailed 1 October for San Francisco, arriving 19 October.
Repairs completed, Montgomery began 10 months of activity which included 2 convoy escort voyages between San Francisco and Hawaii (8 December 1943 to 5 February 1944), defensive minelaying around Kwajalein (17 March to 4 April), convoy escort to Majuro (May 1944), and local convoy escort in the Hawaiians. Montgomery attacked an enemy submarine contact 25 June 1944 without evident result. After an escort voyage to Eniwetok and return (28 June to 16 July), she sailed for Guadalcanal to prepare for the invasion of the Palaus.
Getting underway for the assault 6 September, Montgomery took station off Peleliu 12 September to destroy mines swept from the Japanese minefields. On 17 September she screened transports landing assault troops on Angaur, and 2 days later sailed for mine destruction and patrol duties at Ulithi until 14 October. She bombarded Ngulu 15 October and acted as mother ship for small minelayers during the capture of the atoll.
While anchored off Ngulu 17 October, with her engines secured, Montgomery sighted a mine floating close aboard to port. The wind swung the ship down onto the mine before she could get underway or destroy it. The resulting explosion flooded both enginerooms and one fireroom, ruptured fuel tanks, and killed four of her crew. Salvage efforts kept her afloat until she could be towed to Ulithi for repairs. Underway on her own power 12 January 1945, Montgomery arrived San Francisco 14 February. There it was recommended that she be decommissioned, which she was 23 April 1945. Montgomery was sold 11 March 1946.
Montgomery received four battle stars for World War II service.
Montgomery IV (C-9)
(C‑9: dp. 2,094; l. 269'6"; b. 37'; dr. 14'7"; s. 17 k.; cpl. 274; a. 9 5", 6 6‑pdrs., 2 1‑pdrs., 3 18" tt.; cl. Montgomery)
The fourth Montgomery (C‑9), named for Montgomery, Ala., was launched 5 December 1891 by Columbia Iron Works, Baltimore, Md.; sponsored by Miss Sophia Smith; and commissioned at Norfolk Navy Yard 21 June 1894, Comdr. Charles W. Davis is command.
Assigned to the North Atlantic Squadron, the new cruiser operated along the eastern seaboard and in the Caribbean. During the Spanish‑American War, she cruised near Cuba and Haiti in April 1898 and in May joined the blockade of Havana. She took two prizes, Lorenzo and Frasquito, 5 May, and shelled the Spanish forts a week later.
In April 1899 Montgomery transferred to the South Atlantic Squadron and operated along the Atlantic coast of South America until returning to the United States and decommissioning at New York 15 September 1900. Recommissioned 15 May 1902, she was assigned to the Caribbean Division, North Atlantic Squadron, and operated in the West Indies until decommissioning at Philadelphia 15 September 1904.
Montgomery recommissioned 2 January 1908 and operated in the 5th Naval District as a torpedo experimental ship. From 1914 to 1918 she served with the Maryland Naval Militia. Renamed Anniston 14 March 1918, she was assigned to Division 2, American Patrol Detachment, for patrol and escort duty along the Atlantic coast and in the Caribbean. Decommissioning at Charleston, S.C., 16 May 1918, Anniston was struck from the Navy list 25 August 1919 and sold 14 November 1919.
Montgomery III (ScStGbt)
(ScStGbt.: t. 787; l. 201'6"; b. 28'7"; dr. 15'6"; s. 8 k.; a. 1 8", 4 32‑pdrs.)
Montgomery, a wooden screw steamer, was built at New York in 1858; chartered by the Navy in May 1861; purchased at New York 28 August 1861; and commissioned 27 May 1861 at New York, Comdr. O. S. Glisson in command.
From June to November, Montgomery blockaded Apalachicola, Fla., off which she captured Finland, lacking proper papers, 29 August. In November, she began patrolling the coast from Washington to Cape Fear River, and on the 8th had a running fight with Tallahassee, the Confederate iron propellor. After temporary duty off Ship Island 2 December, she was attacked off Horn Island Pass 2 days later by Florida and Pamlico, but was not damaged.
Joining the East Gulf Blockading Squadron 20 January 1862, Montgomery reported off Ship Island 3 days later. She took schooner Isabel (formerly W. R. King) off Atchafalaya Bay 1 February, then carried dispatches to Tampa before joining the West Gulf Blockading Squadron to hunt for schooner Columbia off San Luis Pass, Tex., 5 April. Finding the schooner abandoned, Montgomery burned her, then captured a large sloop. Cruising the Mexican and Texas coasts, she helped free American citizens held in Mexico the latter part of April and took British schooner Will‑o-‑the‑Wisp of the Rio Grande 3 June.
Further prizes were Blanche, chased ashore at Havana 7 October; British steamer Caroline, taken off Mobile 28 October; and sloop William E. Chester, taken 20 November. She continued to blockade Mobile into 1863, then joined the North Atlantic Blockading Squadron, searching for Confederate cruiser Tacony off Nantucket Shoals in June and Confederate armed cruiser Florida in the same area in July. In August she joined the Wilmington Blockade for the remainder of the year.
Among her 1864 operations in this area were the capture of Pet 11February; the destruction of blockade running steamer Dove 7 June; the capture of Bendigo, aground on Wilmington Bar 13 June; and the seizure of Bat off Western Bar 11 October. Other ships of the blockade aided in these captures. In December and January she joined in the attack on and capture of Fort Fisher.
In February 1865, Montgomery patrolled off Cape Fear River, engaging Half Moon Battery the 11th, then beginning a coastal patrol from Wilmington to Georgetown, S.C., 24 February. Decommissioning at Philadelphia Navy Yard 20 June 1865, she was sold at public auction 10 August 1865, redocumented 1 April 1866, and had merchant service into 1877.
Montgomery II (Sl or Sch)
(Sl or Sch: a. 9 long 9‑pdrs., 2 18‑pdr. Columbiads)
The second Montgomery, a sloop or schooner, was built in 1813 by Thomas Macdonough and purchased 6 August 1813 for duty on Lake Champlain, preventing plundering expeditions and convoying Hampton's troops trying to penetrate into Canada. Montgomery continued service on the lake until deactivated and sold in 1815.
Montgomery I (Frigate)
(Fr: 24 guns)
The first Montgomery was one of the first 13 frigates authorized by the Continental Congress 13 December 1775. She was built by Lancaster Burling at Poughkeepsie, N.Y.; launched late in October 1776; but, because of the British capture of New York City and the closing of the Hudson River, was never finished. The frigate was burned to prevent capture 6 October 1777.