USS Taylor (DD-94)

USS Taylor (DD-94) was a Wickes class destroyer that served with the US Atlantic Fleet late in the First World War, but that had been reduced to a hulk by the outbreak of the Second World War. Later her bow was used to repair USS Blakeley, after that destroyer was damaged by a U-boat.

The Taylor was named after Henry Clay Taylor, a US naval officer who served as a junior officer during the American Civil War, as the commander of the battleship USS Indiana (BB-1) during the Spanish-American War and retired as a rear admiral.

USS Taylor (DD-94) having bow cleared, 1942
USS Taylor (DD-94) having
bow cleared, 1942

The Taylor was laid down on 15 October 1917 at Mare Island, California, launched on 14 February 1918 and commissioned 1 June 1918.

The Taylor served with Division 12 of the Destroyer Force, Atlantic Fleet, for the last few months of the First World War and into the post-war period. Anyone who served on her between 7 August and 11 November 1918 qualified for the First World War Victory Medal.

In the spring of 1919 she moved to Division 8. In 1920 she was briefly placed into reduced commission, before being fully recommissioned in October 1920. She then served with Division 8, Flotilla 8, Squadron 3, before on 21 June 1922 she was decommissioned at Philadelphia.

The Taylor was recommissioned 1 May 1930, and joined Division 33, Squadron 7, Destroyer Squadrons, Scouting Fleet, based at Charleston, South Carolina. In November she was placed in reduced commission with Division 47, Squadron 16, Training Squadron, and was used to train Reserve Officers from the 6th and 8th Naval Districts. In April 1931 she became part of Division 28, Training Squadron, Scouting Force, but still performed a similar role. From early in 1934 until the autumn of the same year she served with Squadron 19 of the Rotating Reserve.

On 1 September 1934 she joined the Special Service Squadron, based in the Panama Canal Zone. Her new role was to protect American interests in the West Indies and Gulf of Mexico.

USS Taylor (DD-94) at rededication of Statue of Liberty 1936
USS Taylor (DD-94)
at rededication of
Statue of Liberty 1936

From October 1935 until early in 1937 she returned to a training role, with Division 30 of the Training Squadron, and was once again used to train reservists.

Early in 1937 she replaced USS Manley (DD-74) in the Special Service Squadron, and she remained with that unit until early in 1938. Her Executive Office in 1937 was José Manuel Cabanillas, who later took part in Operation Torch and the D-Day Landings, ended the Second World War as commander of USS Grundy (APA 111) and retired in 1955 with the rank of Rear Admiral. 

In 1938 the Taylor was decommissioned once again. She was struck off the Navy List on 6 December 1938, and even put up for sale, but she didn't sell, and in July 1940 she was chosen as a training ship for damage control parties, with the new designation of Damage Control Hulk No.40. Most of her served in that role for the rest of the war, before being sold for scrap in August 1945.

The first 60ft of her bow had a different fate. In May 1942 USS Blakeley (DD-150) was hit by a German torpedo, and lost the first 60ft of her bow. The rest of the ship survived intact, and it was decided to take the first 60ft from the Taylor and attach it to the rest of the Blakeley. The merger of the two ships was completed by September 1942, when the Blakeley returned to convoy escort duties, operating in the Atlantic, Caribbean and Mediterranean theatres.

Displacement (standard)

1,160t (design)

Displacement (loaded)


Top Speed

35kts (design)
35.34kts at 24,610shp at 1,149t on trial (Wickes)


2 shaft Parsons turbines
4 boilers
24,200shp (design)


3,800nm at 15kts on trial (Wickes)
2,850nm at 20kts on trial (Wickes)

Armour - belt


 - deck



314ft 4in


30ft 11in

Armaments (as built)

Four 4in/50 guns
Twelve 21in torpedoes in four triple tubes
Two depth charge tracks

Crew complement



14 February 1918


1 June 1918

Sold for scrap

August 1945

U.S. Destroyers: An Illustrated Design History, Norman Friedmann . The standard history of the development of American destroyers, from the earliest torpedo boat destroyers to the post-war fleet, and covering the massive classes of destroyers built for both World Wars. Gives the reader a good understanding of the debates that surrounded each class of destroyer and led to their individual features.
cover cover cover

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How to cite this article: Rickard, J (10 April 2017), USS Taylor (DD-94) ,

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