|In the 18th century and most of the 19th, a sloop-of-war in the Royal Navy was a warship with a single gun deck that carried up to eighteen guns. The rating system covered all vessels with 20 guns and above; thus, the term sloop-of-war encompassed all the unrated combat vessels, including the very small gun-brigs and cutters. A screw sloop is a propeller-driven sloop-of-war. In the 19th century, during the introduction of the steam engine, ships driven by propellers were differentiated from those driven by paddle-wheels by referring to the ship's screws (propellers).|
Illinois served with the European Squadron from 1902 to 1903, and with the North Atlantic Fleet until 1907, by which time it had been renamed the Atlantic Fleet. During this time, she accidentally collided with two other battleships. From December 1907 to February 1909, she circumnavigated the globe with the Great White Fleet. From November 1912, the ship was used as a training ship. She was lent to the state of New York in 1919 for use as a training vessel for the New York Naval Militia. The ship was converted into a floating armory in 1924 as a result of the Washington Naval Treaty, and it was as a floating armory, barracks and school that she served for the next thirty years. In January 1941 she was reclassified as IX-15 and renamed Prairie State so that her former name could be given to USS Illinois (BB-65), a new Iowa-class battleship. Prairie State was ultimately sold for scrap in 1956.
|A replica of the battleship Illinois was a full-scale mockup of this Indiana-class battleship, created as an exhibit for the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago.|
|The keel of the fifth ship of the Iowa class, Illinois (BB-65), was laid down on January 15, 1945, at Philadelphia Navy Yard. By July 7th the construction had progressed this far and the ship was officially canceled a month later, on August 11, 1945, only about 22% complete. Nothing was done with the ship after that and the remains were finally scrapped in 1958.|
Compared to the Montana-class design which would have originally been ordered as BB-65, Illinois would have gained five knots in speed and the ability to transit the locks of the Panama Canal. However, the construction of BB-65 as an Iowa-class battleship also left her with a reduction in her main battery from twelve 16-inch (410 mm) guns to nine, and without the additional armor that she was planned for.
The keel of the fifth ship of the Iowa class, Illinois (BB-65), was laid down on January 15, 1945, at Philadelphia Navy Yard. By July 7th the construction had progressed this far and the ship was officially canceled a month later, on August 11, 1945, only about 22% complete. Nothing was done with the ship after that and the remains were finally scrapped, starting in September of 1958.
USS Illinois (SSN-786), is a Virginia-class submarine, commissioned on October 29, 2016
First Lady Michelle Obama served as the ship's sponsor and christened the boat with a bottle of Champagne on October 10, 2015. Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner was among the officials who spoke at the ceremony on October 10, 2015.
|First Lady Michelle Obama christens the boat on October 10, 2015.|
Compiled by Neil Gale, Ph.D.