Historic and Photographic Sources about US Naval Ships, Old and New

Here is a list of Internet sites devoted to documenting the history of the US Navy. Several are privately maintained by volunteer historians while others are US Naval resources. You can find photographs and earlier images, ship logs, newspaper accounts, official stats and plans, all sorts of records and personnel files and more.

  • Naval History and Heritage Command. Here you will find Ship Histories, archival records, historical photos, art collections and off-beat subjects like uniforms, banners, awards, etc.  Their records are public but many must be used within the facility at the Washington Naval Yard.  This unit is also responsible for nine U.S. Naval museums throughout the U.S. They also publish the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. Their website is: https://www.history.navy.mil/

  • National Archives. Under Military records, you’ll find U.S. Navy Ships – Index where photos (or illustrations for pre-photography ships) are listed alphabetically by ship type. This site is also a source for all types of Naval research. https://www.archives.gov/research/military/navy-ships

  • History Central. This site brings you a short history of every US Naval ship (no Confederate ships though). This is an independent site with the prime author being Marc Schulman. https://www.historycentral.com/navy/index.html

  • List of United States Navy ships is a comprehensive listing of all ships that have been in service to the United States Navy during the history of that service. It is on the Wikipedia website. You can search by ship name, type of ship, etc. It’s source is primarily the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States_Navy_ships
  • NavSource Naval History, aPhotographic History of the U.S. Navy. This site was created so  visitors could find information and images of ships of the USN. It is a group of volunteers who are not paid for their time and efforts. http://www.navsource.org/

  • Haze Grey & Underway Photo Galleries.  Here are dozens of photo features, photo galleries, and photos linked to various ship lists, with well over 3,000 photos.  They cover all eras, all types of ships, and many of the world’s nations. And the Navy’s Dictionary of Naval Fighting Ships can be found here in its entirety. http://www.hazegray.org/features/

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