USS Warrington (DD-30)

USS Warrington (DD-30) was a Paulding class destroyer that took part in the US intervention in Mexico in 1914, operated from Queenstown for six months in 1917 and then from Brest for the rest of the First World War.

The Warrington was named after Lewis Warrington, an officer in the US Navy who fought in the Quasi-War with France, the campaign against the Barbary pirates and the War of 1812, where he commanded the Peacock during her victory over HMS Epervier. Later in his career he held a series of senior posts within the Navy, including a brief spell as Secretary of the Navy after the sitting secretary was killed during a gunnery demonstration.

USS Mayrant (DD-31) and USS Warrington (DD-30) fitting out, 1910
USS Mayrant (DD-31)
USS Warrington (DD-30)
fitting out, 1910

The Warrington was laid down on 21 June 1909 at Philadelphia, launched on 18 June 1810 and commissioned on 20 March 1911. She joined the Atlantic Torpedo Fleet in August 1911 and took part the normal peace time operations of the fleet. On 29 December 1912 she was close to the Virginia Capes, operating with Destroyer Divisions 8 and 9, when she was hit by a schooner that emerged unexpectedly in the darkness. Early destroyers weren't robust ships, and the schooner cut 30 feet off the Warrington's stern. As a result she could no longer move under her own power. She was quickly joined by the Sterett (DD-27), Walke (DD-34) and Perkins (DD-26), but they were unable to get a tow line across. Eventually a revenue cutter managed to take the Warrington under tow, and got her safely back to the Norfolk Navy Yard.

The Warrington was out of action for nearly a year, and the repairs weren't completed until 2 December 1912. She then rejoined her former unit, by this point called the Atlantic Torpedo Flotilla. She spent the next four years taking part in the normal peace time routine of the fleet, from her bases at Newport and then Boston.

The Warrington took part in the US intervention in Mexico in 1914 and anyone who served on her between 22 April-2 May or 14-27 May qualified for the Mexican Service Medal.

Amongst her pre-war commanders was Isaac Foote Dortch, who later went on to command the Wadsworth (DD-60) and Talbot (DD-114), and who had the destroyer USS Dortch (DD-670) named after him.

USS Warrington (DD-30), USS Walke (34), USS Porter (DD-59), Queenstown, 1918
USS Warrington (DD-30),
USS Walke (34),
USS Porter (DD-59),
Queenstown, 1918

After the US entry into the First World War on 6 April 1917 the Warrington began six weeks of patrols off Newport, guarding against any possible German U-boat attack on the naval base. On 21 May she left Boston as part of one of the earlier groups of ships to move to Europe, and on 1 June 1917 she reached the naval base at Queenstown in southern Ireland.

USS Warrington (DD-30) at sea USS Warrington (DD-30) at sea

The Warrington was based at Queenstown for six months. During that time she spent much of her time on anti-submarine patrols, a fairly ineffective way of combating the U-boat threat, and escorting individual ships across the danger zone. During her period at Queenstown she had no encounters with U-boats.

In November 1917 she was ordered to move to Brest, arriving on 29 November. She continued to carry out a similar mix of duties, with convoy escort becoming an increasingly important aspect of her role. Her only encounter with a U-boat came on 31 May 1918, after U-90 sank the Navy transport President Lincoln. The Warrington was at sea escorting a coastal convoy at the time, and rushed to scene to rescue the survivors. She picked up 433 men and the Smith (DD-17) rescued a further 687. The Warrington later had to transfer some of the survivors to the Smith after she ran short of food. One man, Lt Isaacs, was taken by U-90 and later reported that the Warrington and Smith's depth charges did indeed come close to the submarine.

In October 1918 she helped escort Troop Convoy 70 on the last stage of its voyage across the Atlantic. This convoy was noteworthy for suffering a high number of fatalities early in the great Influence Epidemic

Anyone who served on her between 27 June 1917 and 11 November 1919 qualified for the First World War Victory Medal.

The Warrington staying in European waters until the spring of 1919 and didn't leave Brest until 22 March 1919. She reached the US in May and spent the rest of her time in commission in the Philadelphia Navy Yard (including some time in dry dock). She was decommissioned on 31 January 1920, struck off on 20 March 1935 and sold for scrap on 28 June 1935.

Displacement (design)


Displacement (loaded)


Top Speed

29.5kts design
32kts at 17,393shp at 887 tons on trial


3-shaft Parson turbines
4 Normand boilers
12,000shp normal
17,393shp trial


3,000nm at 16kts design
3,343nm at 15kts on trial
2,642nm at 20kts on trial




26ft 3in


Five 3in/50 guns
Six 18in torpedo tubes in three twin mounts

Crew complement



18 June 1810


20 March 1911


Sold for scrap 1935

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 (24 March 2016), USS Warrington (DD-30) ,

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