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Wednesday, January 24, 2018



ONE of the most efficient and famous shipbuilding organizations in the United States constantly identified with work of a very high character in the building of steamships of all types for merchant marine purposes, and also largely engaged in the construction of vessels for the United States Navy, is the Fore River Shipbuilding Corporation, which had operated independently for many years with great plants at Quincy and Squantum, Mass., and became a subsidiary of the great Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation, Ltd., which was incorporated October 27, 1917, and of which E. J. Grace is president.

The main plant, which is located at Quincy, Mass., occupies about fifty-eight acres of ground and comprises a brass foundry, blacksmith shop, copper, tin and pipe shops, shipwright department, pattern and joiner shop, hull department, ship tool shop, machine shop, plate and angle shop, mould loft, galvanizing plant, building berths, building slips, zinc refining plant and drydocks, the plant being in everything fully equipped for the building of merchant ships and war vessels of all kinds, as well as for the construction of ail types of machinery used in shipbuilding.

During the war period the Quincy works, in addition to keeping up their large business of the building of freight steamers and oil tank steamers, including vessels up to more than 15,000 tons' ca-pacity for merchant work, were also engaged in the building of war vessels of all kinds.

The Squantum works, at Atlantic, Mass., has ten slips devoted entirely to the construction of destroyers for the United States Navy, and is now (November, 1919) also engaged in the building of a battleship, number 54, to be named the "Massachusetts."

Both of the plants are constantly devoted to the execution of the largest and most improved style of work, and its accomplishments under the efficient management of the general manager, Mr. S. W. Wakeman, have included some of the most notable in recent shipbuilding construction, one of the most remarkable of these feats in the history of the United States being the completion of the United States destroyer "Reid." This was, on November 6, 1919, turned over to the Navy by the Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation at the Boston Navy Yard in the presence of naval, state, and city officials, and other guests. The "Reid" is the first destroyer constructed in forty-five and one-half working days from the time of the laying of the keel. The work was highly complimented by Admiral Dunn, commandant of the Navy Yard, and Admiral Robeson, chief of the Boston Naval District, in their reply to General Manager Wakeman's official address of transfer.

While both of the plants of the Fore River Shipbuilding Corporation did a great deal of work for the Navy Department during the war, that work is now being exclusively done by the Squantum Works, while the Quincy Works is engaged principally in the building of steel freight steamers, and at the present time is building one ore carrier, 450 feet by 57 feet, with a capacity of 11,400 tons, and four oil carriers, 468 feet 6 inches by 62 feet 6 inches, each with a capacity of 12,600 tons, for the Standard Oil Company of New York.

The organization of the works in every depart-ment of the Fore River Shipbuilding Corporation is very thorough and efficient, each branch being headed by an expert in the particular line, with the result of a highly satisfactory quality of work in all of the ships completed at these yards.

Mr. S. W. Wakeman, the general manager, is a man of large experience and superior executive ability, and under his supervision the work of the plants maintains the highest standard, for which the Fore River works have always been noted, giving it a place among the most important of the progressive shipbuilding enterprises of the United States.

The plants not only of the Fore River Ship-building Corporation, but also of all of the various companies combined in the Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation, have gained and maintain unique distinction for the superior work they have turned out during the war-winning period. It was a time of trial and testing for the shipbuilding interest of the country, and during that critical period no group of producers in America stood the test with greater triumph than the plants which, under Mr. Wakeman's management, made their record of exceptional efficiency.

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Dec 2017 - The Great Ships of 2017

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