USS Barry (DD-2)

USS Barry (DD-2) was a Bainbridge class destroyer that served in the Philippines before the First World War and then in the Mediterranean after the US entry into the war.

The Barry was launched on 22 March 1902 and commissioned on 24 November 1902. She was named after John Barry, who had commanded the Lexington and the Alliancein the Continental Navy and the United States in the young US Navy.

USS Barry (DD-2), fitting out 1902-3
USS Barry (DD-2),
fitting out 1902-3

The Barry joined the 1st Torpedo Flotilla, part of the Coast Squadron in the North Atlantic Fleet, where she served alongside her sister ships. She took part in manoeuvres off the coast of New England in the summer of 1903, before the flotilla was posted to the Asiatic Station. The voyage east took five months, lasting from December 1903 to April 1904. This included a two week pause at Malta while repairs were carried out on a propeller damaged while the Barry was mooring.

The 1st Torpedo Flotilla served with the Battleship Squadron in the Far East. In most years she spent the winters in Philippine waters and the summer in Chinese waters, where the US fleet carried out a mix of drills and 'showing the flag' visits to Chinese ports.

USS Barry (DD-2) coaling at Cavite, c.1912
USS Barry (DD-2) coaling at Cavite, c.1912

This routine was disturbed on several occasions. Late in 1905 the Barry and the Bainbridge returned to Chinese waters in the winter as part of President Theodore Roosevelt's attempt to use a show of military force to end a Chinese boycott of American goods. On this occasion she was away from the Philippines for almost a year, and the two destroyers didn't return to the Philippines until October 1906. The Bainbridge was almost immediately taken out of commission for repairs to her boilers, and the Barry followed between 2 April and 21 December 1908. She was out of commission for a second time between 21 October 1912 and 24 June 1913, this time probably due to a lack of personnel.

On 1 August 1917 the Flotilla left the Philippines at the start of a voyage to Gibraltar, where it was to help escort Allied merchant ships in the increasingly dangerous waters of the Mediterranean. Once gain the voyage was disrupted by damage to one of the Barry's propellers, this time at Colombo, Ceylon. The flotilla reached Gibraltar on 20 October 1917, and the Barry spent the next nine months escorting merchant ships in the western Mediterranean and approaches, to protect them against German U-boats.

In August 1918 the Barry departed for Charleston, South Carolina. She spent the rest of 1918 carrying out patrol and escort duties off the US coast. She was decommissioned at Philadelphia on 28 June 1919 and sold for scrap on 3 January 1920.

Displacement (standard)

420 tons

Displacement (loaded)

620 tons

Top Speed



4 Thornycroft boilers
2 Vertical Triple Engines


3000 miles at cruising speed




23ft 7in


Two 3in/25 guns
Five 6pdr guns
Two 18in torpedo tubes

Crew complement



22 March 1920


24 November 1902


Sold 1920

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

Books on the First World War | Subject Index: First World War

How to cite this article: Rickard, J (22 September 2015), USS Barry (DD-2) ,

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