20.03.

1922: The First American Aircraft Carrier had Carrier Pigeons

1922: The First American Aircraft Carrier had Carrier Pigeons
Photo Credit To Wikipedia Commons

Story Highlights

  • Historical event:
  • 20 March 1922
  • Interestingly, the first U.S. aircraft carrier - the USS Langley - was actually converted from a collier named USS Jupiter. She carried up to 36 biplanes.

On this day the first aircraft carrier in history officially became part of the U.S. Navy.

Her name was USS Langley, full classification symbol CV-1. The U.S. Navy abbreviation CV indicates a Fleet aircraft carrier, and the CVN designation is used if the carrier is nuclear-powered.

For example, today the nuclear aircraft carrier Nimitz class are classified CVN-68 (USS Nimitz), CVN-71 (USS Theodore Roosevelt), CVN-76 (USS Ronald Reagan), etc.

Interestingly, the first U.S. aircraft carrier, the USS Langley, was actually converted from a collier named USS Jupiter. Langley’s length was 165 meters, width approximately 20 meters and displacement about 14,100 tons with a full load. Just for comparison, today’s Nimitz-class carriers have a displacement of up to 106,300 tons.

Langley could carry up to 36 biplane aircraft, mainly Vought VE-7 and Aeromarine 39. Langley even had an elevator for aircraft and a catapult for easier takeoff. A particularly interesting feature of the Langley was that she had a carrier pigeon house on the stern. It was an unusual combination of old and new technologies.

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