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Select Photos of the Cruiser Houston Collection Now Available in the Digital Library

Digitization, USS Houston & Military History
Naming campaign, Western Union storefront

Naming campaign, Western Union storefront (1927) / from the USS Houston (CA-30) Photographs / (sign in window reads, “if you want a new cruiser named ‘U.S.S. Houston’ telegraph your congressman or the Secretary of the Navy”)

The recent publication of the USS Houston (CA-30) Photographs, adding to the growing Military History Collections at our Digital Library, marks another major milestone and means even more research potential for remote scholars unable to visit our rich USS Houston physical archives and materials.

Pulled from the photographs of the Cruiser Houston Collection, this new digital collection highlights the history of the heavy cruiser and her crew–the survivors, prisoners of war, and those who gave all.  The flagship of the Asiatic Fleet during World War II, the Houston fought in the Battle of the Java Sea and to her bitter end at the Battle of Sunda Strait, sinking just after midnight as February turned into March, 1942.  Highlights in the collection date back to the naming campaign that gave her our city’s name, include documentation of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s affinity for the Houston as his vessel of choice for sea voyages and deep sea diversions during his presidency, show haunting scenes from those infamous POW camps, and testify to the resolve of 1,000 “Houston Volunteers” who answered the call sent out by the sinking of the Houston.

Evacuation of POWs, Rat Buri, Thailand ([1945])

Evacuation of POWs, Rat Buri, Thailand [1945] / from the USS Houston (CA-30) Photographs

If these recently published photographs barely scratch your research itch, be sure to also visit the Lt. Robert B. Fulton USS Houston Letters, the William Slough USS Houston Letters, and the USS Houston Blue Bonnet Newsletters, also available for study in our Digital Library.  Or, better yet, visit the permanent exhibition of the USS Houston on the second floor of the M.D. Anderson Library and continue your research with a closer look at the larger USS Houston & Military History Collections in the Special Collections Reading Room.

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