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41 for Freedom FAQ

 

Do you have a picture related to one of the 41 for Freedom submarines? Please e-mail the webmaster and we'll get it posted here! Note that this page is still under construction!


 

What were the 41 for Freedom?

During the Cold War era, the US authorized a program to provide a powerful force that would serve as a deterrent to a nuclear attack. 41 nuclear powered submarines, each capable of launching 16 Polaris missiles, were commissioned. The subs, the largest ever built at the time, were sent to hide in the vast reaches of the Atlantic and Pacific, ready to retaliate against any attacks on the United States.

 

The first of these Ballistic Missile Submarines (Nuclear), designated by SSBN and their number, was built in 1957.

 


 

How were the names chosen?

Because these ships were deemed to be so important to our defense during the Cold War, it was decided to name them after well-known figures in American history who had won and defended our freedom. The careers of the men for whom the Polaris submarines are named span the full range of American history from the Revolution to the present century.

 

These men have left a lasting imprint on the political, cultural and military life of our nation. Their lives show the great impact that a single individual can make upon his nation and his time if he has the ability, the energy, and above all the determination to see his ideas become reality. The men who served aboard the 41 for Freedom, like the namesakes of the subs that carried them, gave of themselves to insure that all Americans would have the opportunity to dream their dreams into reality.

 

Note: I'm working on adding brief descriptions of each of the namesakes, concentrating on the more obscure ones first - check back soon!

 


 

Which submarines were included in the 41 for Freedom?

Mouse over the bolded names for more information about the sub's namesake. Note: this won't work in Netscape 6+. Why? Because Netscape is eeevill...if you're using NS 6+, may I suggest switching to Internet Explorer or Opera? You'll be amazed at how much more of the internet you see!

Name
Authorized
Shipbuilder
Keel Laid
Launched
Commissioned
Decommissioned
SSBN 598 George Washington 1958 Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn. Nov. 1, 1957 June 9, 1959 Dec. 30, 1959  
SSBN 599 Patrick Henry 1958  Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.         
SSBN 600 Theodore Roosevelt 1958  Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Vallejo, CA.        
SSBN 601 Robert E. Lee 1959 Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.        
SSBN 602 Abraham Lincoln 1959 Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, NH.        
SSBN 608 Ethan Allen 1959  Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.         
SSBN 609 Sam Houston 1959  Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.         
SSBN 610 Thomas A. Edison 1959  Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.         
SSBN 611 John Marshall 1959  Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.         
SSBN 616 Lafayette 1961 Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.         
SSBN 617 Alexander Hamilton 1961  Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.        
SSBN 618 Thomas Jefferson 1961 Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.         
SSBN 619 Andrew Jackson 1961  Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Vallejo, CA.         
SSBN 620 John Adams 1961 Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, NH.         
SSBN 622 James Monroe 1961  Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.         
SSBN 623 Nathan Hale 1961 Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.         
SSBN 624 Woodrow Wilson 1961  Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Vallejo, CA.         
SSBN 625 Henry Clay 1961 Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.         
SSBN 626 Daniel Webster 1961  Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.        
SSBN 627 James Madison 1962 Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.         
SSBN 628 Techumseh 1962  Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.        
SSBN 629 Daniel Boone 1962 Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Vallejo, CA.         
SSBN 630 John C. Calhoun 1962  Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.         
SSBN 631 Ulysses S. Grant 1962 Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.         
SSBN 632 Von Steuben 1962  Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.         
SSBN 633 Casimir Pulaski 1962 Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.         
SSBN 634 Stonewall Jackson 1962  Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Vallejo, CA.         
SSBN 635 Sam Rayburn 1962 Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.         
SSBN 636 Nathanael Greene 1962  Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, NH.         
SSBN 640 Benjamin Franklin 1963 Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.         
SSBN 641 Simon Bolivar 1963  Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.         
SSBN 642 Kamehameha 1963 Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Vallejo, CA.         
SSBN 643 George Bancroft 1963 Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.          
SSBN 644 Lewis and Clark 1963  Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.         
SSBN 645 James K. Polk 1963 Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.          
SSBN 654 George C. Marshall 1964 Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.         
SSBN 655 Henry L. Stimson 1964  Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.          
SSBN 656 George Washington Carver 1964 Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., VA.         
SSBN 657 Francis Scott Key 1964  Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.          
SSBN 658 Mariano G. Vallejo 1964 Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Vallejo, CA.         
SSBN 659 Will Rogers 1964  Electric Boat Company, Groton, Conn.          
               

Note: The majority of the information on the 41 for Freedom is taken from

"Eminent Americans: Namsakes of the Polaris Submarine Fleet" by H.G. Rickover.

 

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