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USS Samuel Gompers (AD 37)

- decommissioned -
- sunk as a target -

USS SAMUEL GOMPERS was the lead ship of the SAMUEL GOMPERS - class of destroyer tenders and the first ship in the Navy to bear the name. Initially equipped with one single 5"/38 dual purpose gun mount, this gun was later removed from the ship.

Decommissioned on October 27, 1995, and stricken from the Navy list on April 7, 1999, the SAMUEL GOMPERS was eventually sunk as a target on July 22, 2003, at 3117N2 07351W6.

General Characteristics:Awarded: October 31, 1963
Keel laid: July 9, 1964
Launched: May 14, 1966
Commissioned: July 1, 1967
Decommissioned: October 27, 1995
Builder: Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Bremerton, Wash.
Propulsion system: Two boilers, steam turbines, one shaft, 20,000 shaft horsepower
Propellers: one
Length: 643 feet (196 meters)
Beam: 85 feet (25.9 meters)
Draft: 27 feet (8.2 meters)
Displacement: approx. 20,500 tons full load
Speed: 20 knots
Aircraft: Flight Deck only
Armament: none
Crew: 106 officers and 1,314 enlisted

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Crew List:

This section contains the names of sailors who served aboard USS SAMUEL GOMPERS. It is no official listing but contains the names of sailors who submitted their information.

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About the Ship's Name:

USS SAMUEL GOMPERS is the first US Navy ship named for a Samuel Gompers who devoted his life to the labor movement and American ideals.

Samuel Gompers was born in London on 27 January 1850 and was apprenticed to a cigar maker in 1863. The following year, at the age of 14, Gompers became associated with the labor movement. He helped organize and became the president of the Cigarmakers International Union, which was a model for other unions to follow.

In 1881, Gompers served as chairman of an organization that evolved into the Federation of Organized Trades and Labor Unions of the United States and Canada. It was reorganized and renamed the American Federation of Labor (AFL) in 1886. Gompers was elected president of the AFL and served in that capacity for more than four decades as the official head of the American labor movement.

Before the AFL was founded, the labor movement was fragmented into small individual unions throughout the country, all working without much cooperation with each other. Upon formation of the AFL, Gompers took the helm as its president and welded the labor movement into a single unit that became a power in the commercial, industrial and political life of the United States.

Gompers believed in the ideals of America and taught patriotism to all his followers. He kept the labor movement on a conservative footing and free from radicalism. A fearless advocate of right and a great humanitarian, he was also a great fighter. Gompers strove for peace in American industry, setting an example for others to follow. His work for nearly half a century was dedicated to advancing the lot of laborers, both men and women. His firm conviction that labor could never displace management made it possible for him to successfully negotiate with industry.

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