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USS Maryland BB-46 at Pearl Harbor

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USS Maryland Hit by Bombs

USS Maryland at Pearl Harbor

When the Japanese planes attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, the USS Maryland was paired with the USS Oklahoma in Battleship Row, and being moored inboard, was protected from torpedo hits.

“Thundering explosions jolted the outboard battleships and the boatswain's mate of the watch piped the word 'Away fire and rescue party' and the bugler blew general quarters. The anti-aircraft batteries sprung into action as more low flying bombers appeared.” USS Maryland (BB-46), (pg. 9).

The Maryland began receiving survivors of the Oklahoma when the outboard ship quickly capsized after being hit by successive torpedoes. The Maryland was then struck by two armor-piercing bombs which caused light damage and flooding. She continued to fire throughout the attack and sent firefighting crews to assist other ships. In February 1942 the Maryland was returned to active service. The “Fighting Mary”, as she was called, went on to take part in many of the campaigns of the Pacific War that followed the attack on Pearl Harbor.

The photo above shows the USS Maryland to the left of the capsized Oklahoma. The West Virginia can be seen burning in the center background. U.S. Navy Photograph, National Archives Collection.

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Damage report on USS Maryland
Enclosure C to
CINCPAC action report Serial 0479
February 15, 1942

"Maryland two bomb hits on forecastle. One small bomb (probably 100 pounds) passed through the forecastle deck forward of the chain pipes and exploded on the main deck causing only a small amount of damage. The second bomb, (probably 500 pounds) passed through port side of the sip about twelve feet under water and exploded in the C&R storeroom. This explosion wrecked flats and bulkheads in that area, and fragments caused numerous leaks through the sides and bottom. These leaks were temporarily patched without going into drydock."