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Cramps Shipbuilding

William Cramps Shipbuilding 1830 - 1927 

Cramp’s shipyard, located in Fishtown section of Philadelphia, opposite Petty Island Camden. It occupied about 30 acres along the Delaware River and produced more than 500 ships. Starting with wooden hull sailing ships early to iron clad/wooden hull ships during the civil war then full iron ships by the Spanish-American war. A major shipbuilder with a reputation as the premier maker of modern ships. The ship yard was purchased by American Ship and Commerce Corporation in 1919 and closed in 1927. The Navy reactivated the shipyard in World War II.


USS New York (ACR-2/CA-2) (1893)384 foot length, 64 foot beam, 23 foot draft, capable of 21 knots

SS Evangeline (1927) later SS Yarmouth Castle 1964. 375 foot long, 56 foot beam, twin screw, steam turbine driven. A fire in 1965 off Miami resulted in loss of life for 90 people and ship sinking.


USS New Ironside (1862) - A wooden hull iron clad steam ship 230 foot long, 57 foot beam, 15 foot draft. Horizontal steam engine operating on 20 psi steam. Blocaded Charleston Harbor during the Civil War. Originally had sails, shown after 1864 reconstruction.

Russian postage stamp honoring the cruiser Varyag. Built by Cramps Shipyard (1901) for the Russian Admiralty. 430 feet long, 50 foot beam, 20 foot draft.


USS Indiana (BB-1) (1895) depicted during the battle of Santiago Cuba during the Spanish American War. 350 feet long, 69 foot beam, 27 foot draft. Coal fired, scotch boilers and triple expansion steam engines.


SS Malolo luxury liner for Matson line, service to Hawaii (1926). Later Matsonia and Queen Frederica. 582 feet long, 83 foot beam, 30 foot draft, capable of 21 knots. On her sea trials, she collided with a Norwegian freighter. Her water tight bulkheads allowed her to stay afloat with over 7000 tons of water in her hull and make it back to port.

SS Malo on Delaware. Courtesy of David Boone Marine Artist.


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