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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.

    Benham Class Destroyer
    Keel Laid 1 September 1936 - Launched 16 April 1938

  1. USS BENHAM DD-397
    Commissioned 2 February 1939
    SUNK by Japanese Warships 15 November 1942 off Guadalcanal


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 incarnation of the ship (ie, for each entry in the "Ship Name and Designation History" section). 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. USS Benham DD-397 Covers Page 1     (1936-1941)



This section lists examples of the postmarks used by the ship. There should be a separate set of postmarks for each incarnation of the ship (ie, for each entry in the "Ship Name and Designation History" section). 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
Postmark Image
Thumbnail Link
Cover Image

Post Office Established 2 February 1939 - Disestablished 15 November 1942


Locy Type



First Day of Postal Service, cachet by Ted Rauterberg, sponsored by Walter Czubay


Locy Type
3 (A-BTT)



Shakedown Cruise, cachet by Loring W. Stannard


Locy Type
3 (A-BBT)



Add-on cachet by Bruce D. Liddell


Locy Type 9v


Cachet by Louis C. Weigand


Locy Type 9x


Cachet by Louis C. Weigand


Locy Type
Pz (OXO)



Red postmark dated 13-November-1942, Locy Type Pz(OXO) killer text "BENHAM / SUNK". Unfranked, cartoon bomb hitting caricature of a Japanese man with "FREE". Unaddressed. Blue thermographic (glossy raised print) Navy Seal cachet by George V. Sadworth. Reverse blank. Light age toning as shown in image. Good condition, flap open, no tears or damage. Provisional postmark not listed in USCS Catalog, estimated rarity R-3. Created from Bristol postmark T-3(A-OTO), middle letter of "U.S.S." removed at top of dial, ship name removed from bottom of dial, "NAVY" added to dial, middle killer bar removed. Very likely the killer text was a separate rubber-stamp.
USS Bristol DD-453. Courtesy of Bruce D. Liddell


Other Information

USS BENHAM earned 5 Battle Stars for her WWII service

NAMESAKE - Rear Admiral Andrew Ellicot Kennedy Benham (10 April 1832 - August 11 1905)
Benham was appointed a Midshipman in 1847. He took part in the Paraguay Expedition (1854-55) and served with both the South Atlantic and West Gulf Blockading Squadrons during the Civil War. He commanded the North Atlantic Station 1892-93, and retired the following year. Rear Admiral Benham died at Lake Mahopac, N. Y., August 11 1905



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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