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Strange Navy History and Abraham Lincoln
The US Navy (USN) Nimitz Class Aircraft Carrier USS ABRAHAM LINCOLN (CVN 72) sails in formation with Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) ships (not shown) during a passing exercise (PASSEX) in the Pacific Ocean.

Strange Navy History and Abraham Lincoln 

Two United States navy ships have been named after Abraham Lincoln.

One of the last things that Abraham did in life, was to take a casual walk aboard the U.S.S. Montauk, at 5p.m. on April 14, 1865. The Montauk, a single turreted monitor, had been commissioned prior to the Civil War in 1862, and was a principal ironclad in attacks on South Carolina. Lincoln was ever mindful of the men who served their country, and dropped by the now idle warship to visit its crew. Less than two weeks later, it would become the only secure holding place officials could think of for the body of John Wilkes Booth, the man who assassinated Lincoln.

So while not a Navy man himself, Lincoln did have an affinity for the men of the Navy, and was honored in 1960, with the launching of the U.S.S. Abraham Lincoln, (SSBN-602), one of the first ballistic missile submarines in the world. Her job was primarily to conduct deterrent patrols, most of which were carried out on both coasts of the U.S., although in her final years, her duties took the ship to the Pacific region around Guam. By 1977, she was the first ballistic submarine to have conducted 50 such patrols, including service during the Cuban missile crisis. The first navy “Abe” was retired in 1982, and recycled in 1994.

But it’s hard to keep a good ship or president, down. In 1988, the U.S.S.Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) was launched once more, as the fifth ship in the Nimitz aircraft carrier class. Assigned to the Pacific in 1989, her first major mission was as part of Operation Desert Storm in 1990. Over the years, the Abe took part in the removal of American civilians from war-torn regions, humanitarian missions, reconnaissance patrols, and defensive maneuvers. It also became the first carrier to welcome female aviators, with the lifting of the Combat Exclusion Laws in 1993. She is still in service, today.

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