(Images courtesy of
O'Brien is one of the last floating examples of the famous World War
II "Liberty Ship". Located at Pier 45 San Francisco, CA, the vessel is
an operational floating museum.
The German Navy's strategy during the Battle of the Atlantic was to sink
supply ships bound for Great Britain faster than they could be built,
thus starving the island nation into surrender. Desperately England
turned to America for help in building more ships to maintain her
struggle against Nazi Germany. They brought with them a proven design
having adequate horsepower and carrying capacity that could be modified
for mass production.
America became the "Arsenal of Democracy and eventually eighteen ship
yards built Liberty ships with a large part of the workforce being
women. American ingenuity devised new fabrication techniques that cut
delivery time from 110 days to an average of 40 days for the new vessel.
These ships were critical in winning the war.
The S.S. Jeremiah O'Brien was built in 56 days and launched on June
19th, 1943. She made four voyages in convoys between the U.S. and Great
Britain. On her fourth voyage she was diverted into a shuttle run
between England and the D-Day Normandy beachheads of Omaha and Utah .
She made 11 such trips fighting off enemy aircraft two bomb and one
On her last voyage in January 1946 she carried Australian war brides to
the U.S. to join their new American husbands.
These perspective images are back linked from many
of the Shipwreck Museum's vessels to give an historic prospective of
what merchant ships of this era originally looked like.
(l) Ship ID plaque; (r) Bows of a Liberty ship.
(l) Bow, gun, & anchor; (r) Gun tub, stack and amidships deckhouse.
(l) Stern, screw & rudder; (r) 3 inch anti-ship gun.
(l) Anti-aircraft gun in tub; (r) Oerliken
(l) Engine room sky lights; (r) Skylight hatches and vent scoops.
(l) Skylight hatches from inside engine room; (r) Ship compartment ladder.
(l) Engine cylinders; (r) Engine room cylinders.
(l) Ship electrical console; (r) Work bench .
(l) Engine wrenches; (r) Pressure gauges.
(l) Chain hoists; (r) Engine drive shaft piston.
(l) Steam boiler; (r) Engine order telegraph.
(l) Hold, cargo winches & booms; (r) Cargo winch.
(l) Aft cargo & steering winch; (r) Cargo winch.
(l) Anchor windlass; (r) Anchor chain & hawespipe.
(l) Bow sprit and flag staff; (r) Cargo mast.
(l) Smoke stack; (r) Mooring bullards & line.
(l) Weather bridge conning helm; (r) Alarm switch.
(l) Spare anchor; (r) Hoisting davit.
(l) Ship's main helm ; (r) Compass binnacle.
(l) Porthole & deadlight. ; (r) Bridge speaking tubes.
(l) Radio console; (r) Caged light.
(l) 6 x 6 US Army truck; (r) Steering wheel.