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Ship Name and Designation History

This section lists the names and designations that the ship had during its lifetime. The list is in chronological order.

    Buckley Class Destroyer Escort
    Keel March 21 1943 - Launched and Christened September 5 1943

    Commissioned November 19 1943 - Decommissioned November 27 1946
    Recommissioned September 1 1950 - Decommissioned December 6 1958

    Placed In Service as a unit of the Select Reserve ASW Force

    Recommissioned October 2 1961 - Decommissioned August 1 1962

    Placed In Service as a Group II Naval Reserve training ship
    Placed Out of Service July 12 1969

    Stricken from Naval Register July 12 1969
    Sunk as target April 28 1971 torpedoed by USS TRIGGER SS-564

Naval Covers

This section lists active links to the pages displaying covers associated with the ship. There should be a separate set of pages for each name of the ship (for example, Bushnell AG-32 / Sumner AGS-5 are different names for the same ship so there should be one set of pages for Bushnell and one set for Sumner). Covers should be presented in chronological order (or as best as can be determined).

Since a ship may have many covers, they may be split among many pages so it doesn't take forever for the pages to load. Each page link should be accompanied by a date range for covers on that page.

  1. Covers Page 1     (1946)



This section lists examples of the postmarks used by the ship. There should be a separate set of postmarks for each name and/or commissioning period. Within each set, the postmarks should be listed in order of their classification type. If more than one postmark has the same classification, then they should be further sorted by date of earliest known usage.

A postmark should not be included unless accompanied by a close-up image and/or an image of a cover showing that postmark. Date ranges MUST be based ONLY ON COVERS IN THE MUSEUM and are expected to change as more covers are added.
>>> If you have a better example for any of the postmarks, please feel free to replace the existing example.


Postmark Type
Killer Bar Text

Thumbnail Link To
Postmark Image
Thumbnail Link To
Cover Image

1st Commissioning November 19 1943 to November 27 1946


Locy Type




Locy Type
2z + SL



2nd Commissioning September 1 1950 to December 6 1958


Locy Type



3rd Commissioning October 2 1961 to August 1 1962


Locy Type
2(n) (USS)




Locy Type
LDPS 2(n)


Last Day of Postal Service, cachet by Morris W. Beck





Letter from Undersecretary of the Navy, James Forrestal. Letter informs Ensign Whitehursts mother that a US ship will be named in his honor.


Other Information

USS WHITEHURST earned the Combat Action Ribbon, the American Campaign Medal, the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (w/ 7 Battle stars), the World War II Victory Medal, two National Defense Service Medals, the Korean Service Medal (w/ 3 Battle stars), the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, the Philippine Liberation Medal, the United Nations Korean Service Medal and the Republic of Korea War Service Medal during her Naval career.

USS WHITEHURST and her crew starred in the 20th Century-Fox movie "The Enemy Below" June-July 1957

NAMESAKE - Ensign Henry Purefoy Whitehurst, Jr., USN (February 16 1920 - August 9 1942)
     Whitehurst was appointed Midshipman on July 14 1938. Because of the exigencies of war, graduated with the Naval Academy's Class of 1942 on December 19 1941. He reported to the Heavy Cruiser USS ASTORIA CA-34 on the morning of January 18 1942 at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
     Whitehurst served as a junior watch and division officer in ASTORIA as that ship took part in the Battles of the Coral Sea and Midway, and was in the cruiser when she participated in the landings on Guadalcanal on August 7 1942. The next day, ASTORIA screened the vital transports as they unloaded supplies and equipment for the Marines ashore, and that evening stood out to a night retirement station off Savo Island. A little after 0152 on the morning of August 9, a Japanese force under Vice Admiral Gunichi Mikawa, which had slipped undetected into the waters south of Savo Island, unleashed a devastating night attack on the Southern and Northern Forces. The Northern Force, unaware of the enemy's presence until too late, soon took staggering punishment. USS VINCENNES CA-44 and USS QUINCY CA-39 sank before daylight, but ASTORIA lingered on while her surviving officers and men labored to save their ship. However, the damage proved too great; and ASTORIA, like her two sister ships, eventually succumbed shortly after noon on August 9. Among the dead suffered in the Battle of Savo Island was Ensign Whitehurst.



If you have images or information to add to this page, then either contact the Curator or edit this page yourself and add it. See Editing Ship Pages for detailed information on editing this page.


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