The “Maine”

Source: The “Maine”; an account of her destruction in Havana Harbor, Joyner Rare E 721.6 S57

The "Maine"

The "Maine"

Staff Person: Ralph Scott


USS Maine, a 6682-ton second-class battleship, was built at the New York Navy Yard and commissioned in September 1895. Her active career was spent operating along with U.S. east coast and in the Caribbean area. In January 1898, Maine was sent to Havana, Cuba, to protect U.S. interests during a time of local insurrection and civil disturbances. Three weeks later, on 15 February, the battleship was sunk by a massive explosion that killed the great majority of her crew. This volume is the personal narrative of Captain Charles D. Sigsbee. His conclusion as to the destruction of the vessel largely follow the findings of the official Navy inquiry, which found that an external mine sunk the vessel. In 1976 Admiral Hyman Rickover, using World War II explosion data, concluded that the damage came from inside the vessel, probably from a coal bunker. A 1999 investgation using more modern methods was inconclusive. President Theodore Roosevelt, Assistant Secretary of the Navy at the time of the sinking, stated, “We will probably never find out definitely,” what happened. Conspiracy theorists of course still have a field day with the sinking of the vessel.

Joyner Rare E 721.6. S57

Charles D. Sigsbee, The “Maine”; an account of her destruction in Havana Harbor, New York Century Company, 1899. 270pp.

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