Photo: U.S. Navy Battleship USS Texas Is Getting a Historic Upgrade

Battleship USS Texas Reboot
February 8, 2024 Topic: Security Region: Americas Blog Brand: The Buzz Tags: USS TexasBattleshipBattleshipsU.S. NavyMilitaryNavy

Photo: U.S. Navy Battleship USS Texas Is Getting a Historic Upgrade

When the restoration efforts are complete, USS Texas (BB-35) will have a new home at Pier 21 in Galveston, as part of an effort to attract more attendees

 

Before and After Photos Released of the Battleship USS Texas - Newly posted photos have highlighted the progress made to the USS Texas (BB-35). The Battleship Texas Foundation, which maintains the historic warship, released new photos that show the before and after look of the New York-class battle wagon as her restoration work continues.

As reported by KJAS News, the old dull, chipped, and rusted paint is now gone and the battleship looks practically new, sporting fresh paint and other updates. While the long-retired warship will never move under her own power again, efforts have been underway for a year and a half to restore the vessel – which had leaks so bad that the ship began to list six degrees to starboard. Emergency repairs were required to ensure the ship wasn't lost forever.

 

In August 2022, USS Texas was towed out of her berth to a floating dry dock at Gulf Copper Dry Dock & Rig Repair in Galveston for repairs.

Battleship USS Texas: Choosing the Right Color

Careful consideration was made when it came to that paint. According to the foundation, above the boot top – the black band on the hull – the ship has been painted Navy Blue 5-N. That color was matched from existing examples found both internally and externally aboard the vessel.

USS Texas would have also been painted that color during most – but not all – of her service. In fact, the ship was painted in the Measure 21 camouflage scheme prior to deploying to the Pacific Theater during World War II. That measure was used extensively in the western and southern Pacific from mid-1942 through 1945 to minimize detection and identification by enemy aircraft.

The former battleship's hull has also been coated with PPG SIGMASHIELD 880 GF, which should offer protection from the elements for decades to come. While historically the ship would be coated with an anti-fouling coat that is red in color, such coating is no longer needed as the ship is not in service.

Post Restoration Plans

When the restoration efforts are complete, USS Texas (BB-35) will have a new home at Pier 21 in Galveston, as part of an effort to attract more attendees.

After being retired following the Second World War, USS Texas became the nation's first battleship to be turned into a floating museum and she was transferred to the Lone Star State. Since April 21, 1948, the gallant warship was located in the Houston Ship Channel near the San Jacinto Battleground Memorial – the location where Texian troops led by Gen. Sam Houston surprised and quickly defeated the Mexican Army in 1836.

USS Texas

It was considered a fitting location for what became the honorary flagship of the Texas Navy.

However, according to the Battleship Texas Foundation, it had only seen 80,000 to 90,000 visitors a year at the San Jacinto Monument, located approximately 25 miles east of Houston.

USS Texas

That was far below what's needed for it to be self-sustaining, and it is now hoped that the move to Galveston will at least triple those numbers. The foundation is currently seeking to raise $15 million toward renovations and a visitor center, while the State of Texas has contributed $60 million for repairs to the vessel, which is the honorary flagship of the Texas Navy.

USS Texas

Several suitable locations had been considered for the future home of the historic vessel. Still, in September 2023, it was announced that the Battleship Texas Foundation was just two months away from an agreement to keep the ship at Pier 21, near the Galveston Historic Seaport, which is also home to the 1877 Tall Ship ELISSA.

USS Texas

Author Experience and Expertise: Peter Suciu

Peter Suciu is a Michigan-based writer. He has contributed to more than four dozen magazines, newspapers, and websites with over 3,200 published pieces over a twenty-year career in journalism. He regularly writes about military hardware, firearms history, cybersecurity, politics, and international affairs. Peter is also a Contributing Writer for Forbes and Clearance Jobs. You can follow him on Twitter: @PeterSuciu. You can email the author: [email protected].

Image Credit: Battleship Texas Foundation.