More USS Montpelier Project

Deck Logs of USS Montpelier September 1942-March 1943

This hand written war diary chronicles the first six months of the USS Montpelier following her commissioning in September 1942. Formal deck logs replaced the war diary in April 1943.

Assembled by Village Hiker from original sources obtained from the National Archives and Records Administration Southwest Region, Fort Worth, Texas.

Birth of a Warship

Powered by four props driven by steam turbines, the USS Montpelier could cruise at 31 knots while accurately firing her main six-inch batteries, plus her five-inch and 40mm antiaircraft guns. While radar sights and mechanical computers blessed her large weapons—making them death for standing, walking and running targets—an onboard force of 40 US Marines regularly disappointed close-in marks from their manually-operated 20mm machine guns mounted on her deck.

USS Montpelier CL-57

Taking her name from the capital city of Vermont—a New England State in the United States of America (USA)—the Montpelier was given life at the New York Shipyards in Camden, New Jersey. She received commissioning September 9, 1942, as a United States Navy warship. After passing some leakage and combat tests, the Montpelier steamed through the Panama Canal into the Pacific fleet. Her wartime travels would take her from sea battles in the Solomon Islands to peacemaking in the land of Japan.

She sailed as a Cleveland Class Light Cruiser—long, narrow, fast, quick and lethal—plus a few tons top heavy.

A Post Treaty Ship

As a Cleveland Class Light Cruiser, the Montpelier was a post-treaty warship, redesigned for combat firepower once war muted the naval treaties formed during the 1920's and 1930's. Her displacement was 11,800 tons, more than 14,000 tons fully loaded. The Clevelands steamed fast and turned quick for their 600-plus foot length. They sailed to war heavily armed for land, sea and anti-aircraft combat.

The Mighty Monty—so named by her crew— went to war in 1942 carrying 12 six-inch guns, 12 five-inch guns, 16 40mm Bofors anti-aircraft guns, 23 20mm machine guns and two 30 caliber automatic weapons. During her refitting at Mare Island Naval Shipyard in 1944, 13 of her 20mm machine guns were replaced with 12 additional 40mm Bofors, possibly saving her life while fighting suicide plane attacks in the Philippines and Marianas.

Where She Went, What She Did

The officers of the Montpelier kept a log of her activities. For her first six months at sea, the Montpelier logs were recorded in pencil on lined writing pads. These are reproduced here. Starting in April 1943, the Montpelier began using standard US Navy forms. These pages reproduce only the original War Diary.

Seeing More Details

To keep the files relatively small for downloading, the images have been reduced from their original scans. Even so, they are much larger than shown on the web pages. To see more details, zoom in with your web browser.

War Diary Table of Contents

Here is the table of contents for the war diary.

USS Montpelier, CL-57 September 1942-March 1943

September 1-30, 1942

October 1-29, 1942

October 30-31, 1942

November 1-30, 1942

December 1-16, 1942

December 18, 1942

December 19-21, 1942

December 21-25, 1942

December 26, 1942

December 27-31, 1942

December 31, 1942

January 1, 1943

January 1-4, 1943

January 5-8, 1943

January 9-13, 1943

January 13-17, 1943

January 17, 1943

January 17, 1943

January 18-23, 1943

January 24-25, 1943

January 26-27, 1943

January 27-29, 1943

January 29-31, 1943

January 31, 1943

January 31, 1943

February 1, 1943

February 2-3, 1943

February 3-4, 1943

February 4-6, 1943

February 6-10, 1943

February 6, 1943

February 10-13, 1943

February 13, 1943

February 14-18, 1943

February 19-20, 1943

February 20-22, 1943

February 22-25, 1943

February 26-27, 1943

February 28, 1943

March 1-2, 1943

March 3-4, 1943

March 4-6, 1943

March 6-9, 1943

March 9-15, 1943

March 15-19, 1943

March 20-23, 1943

March 24-27, 1943

March 28-31, 1943

Ammunition Expenditure Reports

February 13, 1943

February 20, 1943

February 28, 1943

February 28, 1943 (Training)

War Diary Submittal Notes

February 13, 1943 - For January

February 28, 1943 - For February

April 3, 1943 - For March

Love Us On Facebook!

CL57 Links

This list updates regularly.


Advertising supports our research and writing projects.

free trial
click link below

Unlimited Reading.
Unlimited Listening.
Almost Any Device.

Automate Your Life
a little

Echo Above

Dot Below

Watch with Show

Keep it Clean

This is a standalone automated vacuum cleaner. It does not work with Echo and friends.