USS Little Rock (CL-92)

USS Little Rock (CL-92) was a Cleveland class light cruiser that entered service too late to participate in the Second World War but that was later converted into a guided missile cruiser (CLG-4) and served with the Mediterranean Fleet.

USS Little Rock (CL-92), Cape Cod Canal, c.1946-1949
USS Little Rock (CL-92),
Cape Cod Canal,

The Little Rock was laid down on 6 March 1943, launched on 27 August 1944 and commissioned on 17 June 1945. By the time her shakedown cruise was complete the Second World War was over, and she never went to the Pacific. Instead her first cruise was a trip around Latin America, followed by a Caribbean cruise and then her first deployment to the 6th Fleet in European waters, which lasted from 4 June to 27 September 1946. This established the pattern for 1947 and 1948 and in both years she spent some time in the Mediterranean as well as operating off the East Coast and in the Caribbean. She was decommissioned in 1949 and entered the reserve fleet at New York.

In 1957 the Little Rock was chosen for conversion to a Providence class guided missile cruiser. On 23 May 1957 she was reclassified as CLG-4 and after three years of work she was recommissioned on 3 June 1960.

The Little Rock resumed her association with the Sixth Fleet in the Mediterranean. Her first post-refit tour was in 1961, and she returned on an annual basis for most of the 1960s and the first half of the 1970s. She was finally decommissioned in 1976 after it became clear that her engines needed expensive repairs.

After she was decommissioned the Little Rock was chosen to become a museum ship. She was taken to the Buffalo Naval and Military Museum in 1977 and is there to this day, making her the only surviving member of the Cleveland class.

Displacement (standard)


Displacement (loaded)


Top Speed



11,000nm at 15kts

Armour – belt


 - armour deck


 - bulkheads


 - barbettes


 - turrets

6.5in face
3in top
3in side
1.5in rear

 - conning tower

2.25in roof


610ft 1in oa


Twelve 6in/47 guns (four triple turrets)
Twelve 5in/38 guns (six double positions)
Twenty eight 40mm guns (4x4, 6x2)
Ten 20mm guns
Four aircraft

Crew complement




Laid down

6 March 1943


27 August 1944


17 June 1945

Stricken but preserved

22 November 1976

US Navy Light Cruisers 1941-45, Mark Stille. Covers the five classes of US Navy light cruisers that saw service during the Second World War, with sections on their design, weaponry, radar, combat experience. Nicely organised, with the wartime service records separated out from the main text, so that the design history of the light cruisers flows nicely. Interesting to see how new roles had to be found for them, after other technology replaced them as reconnaissance aircraft [read full review]
cover cover cover
How to cite this article: Rickard, J (9 December 2013), USS Little Rock (CL-92) ,

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