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USS John Adams (SSBN 620)

- decommissioned -

USS JOHN ADAMS was one of the LAFAYETTE - class nuclear powered fleet ballistic missile submarines and the second ship in the Navy to bear the name. The first JOHN ADAMS was named for the second President of the United States while the second JOHN ADAMS (SSBN 620) was named for both him and his son, John Quincy Adams.

Built and designed to deploy the Polaris A2 missiles, the JOHN ADAMS received an upgrade to accommodate the 2500-mile range Polaris A3 in 1968-70 and was refitted with the Poseidon missiles by 1978.

Decommissioned and stricken from the Navy list on March 24, 1989, the JOHN ADAMS spent the next years berthed at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in Bremerton, Wash., until she was disposed of through the Nuclear Powered Ship and Submarine Recycling Program. Recycling was finished on February 12, 1996.

General Characteristics:Awarded: July 23, 1960
Keel laid: May 19, 1961
Launched: January 12, 1963
Commissioned: May 12, 1964
Decommissioned: March 24, 1989
Builder: Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, N.H.
Propulsion system: one S5W nuclear reactor
Propellers: one
Length: 425 feet (129.6 meters)
Beam: 33 feet (10 meters)
Draft: 31.5 feet (9.6 meters)
Displacement: Surfaced: approx. 7,250 tons; Submerged: approx. 8,250 tons
Speed: Surfaced: 16 - 20 knots;Submerged: 22 - 25 knots
Armament: 16 vertical tubes for Polaris or Poseidon missiles, four 21" torpedo tubes for Mk-48 torpedoes, Mk-14/16 torpedoes, Mk-37 torpedoes and Mk-45 nuclear torpedoes
Crew: 13 Officers and 130 Enlisted (two crews)

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Crew List:

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

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Accidents aboard USS JOHN ADAMS:

June 7, 1963Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, NH.USS TINOSA (SSN 606) collides with the USS JOHN ADAMS when a tug towline snaps while the TINOSA is moved in the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard. TINOSA suffers a small dent below the waterline in the bow.

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About the Ship's Name:

John Adams, born in Braintree, Mass., 19 October 1735, graduated from Harvard in 1755. He studied law while teaching school for the next 3 years and was admitted to the bar in 1758. His opposition to the Stamp Act in 1765 established Adams as a political leader. After moving to Boston he served in the Massachusetts House of Representatives and later in the Provincial Congress.

In 1774 Adams was selected as one of the delegates from Massachusetts to the first Continental Congress where he became a champion of American rights and liberties and later a leader in the independence movement. He seconded Richard Henry Lee's motion for a resolution of independence 7 June 1776, and he served on the committee which drafted the Declaration of Independence which was adopted 4 July.

On 5 October 1775, Congress created the first of a series of committees to study naval matters. From that time onward throughout his career Adams championed the establishment and strengthening of an American Navy. He was so active and effective in forwarding the nation's naval interests that he is often called the father of the Navy.

Adams succeeded Silas Deane as commissioner to France in 1777 to begin a decade of diplomatic service in Europe only briefly interrupted in 1779 when he returned to Massachusetts to play a leading role in the state constitutional convention.

John Adams was the first Vice President of the United Stated serving under Washington from 1789 to 1797 when he became the second President. Difficulties with France during his administration prompted him to push vigorously for construction of the Navy which had been neglected after the treaty of Paris.

Defeated for reelection in 1800, John Adams retired from public life to Quincy, Mass., where he died 4 July 1826, coincidentally both the 50th anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence and the day of Thomas Jefferson's death.

John Quincy Adams, the eldest son of President John Adams, was born 1 July 1767 at Quincy, Mass. His travel in Europe accompanying his father on diplomatic missions gave him a broad knowledge of diplomacy. Washington appointed him Minister to the Netherlands in 1794, and his father sent him to Prussia, where he represented the United States from 1797 to 1801. He served in the U.S. Senate from 1803 to 1808, and the following year he became Minister to Russia. In 1814 he was one of the American diplomats whose negotiations with the English led to the Treaty of Ghent, which settled the War of 1812. Service after the war as Minister to England rounded out his diplomatic training.

James Monroe appointed him Secretary of State, and he won enduring fame in the post. The Monroe Doctrine was the crowning achievement of the 8 years of skillful service in the office establishing the position of the United States as a power capable of dealing with other nations as equals.

In 1824, after an inconclusive general election, the House of Representatives elected him sixth President of the United States. After serving one term, his try for reelection was defeated by Andrew Jackson. Two years after his return to Quincy, he was elected to Congress, where he enjoyed widespread respect for his great knowledge and his high-minded opposition to any extension of slavery. While on the floor of the House, he was seized by a stroke 21 February 1848 and died shortly afterwards.

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