Historic pairing of two dispatches to the USS Richmond, headed "U.S.S. Richmond, Cruisers Battle Force," each one page, 7.75 x 6.5, both dated December 7, 1941: the first, from "CINPAC" to "CINCLANT-CINCAF-OPNAV," reads: "Air raid on Pearl Harbor x This is not a drill AR"; the second, to "All US Men o War at Canal Zone Area, ASTA, 15th Nav Dist," reads: "Cease granting Liberty until further notice x Recall all men on Liberty." In very good to fine condition.
The USS Richmond had moved to Pearl Harbor in early 1941, where it became flagship of the Scouting Force. In October, the ship was recalled to San Francisco, where it joined the Neutrality Patrols along the west coast of North and South America. At the time of the Pearl Harbor attack, the Richmond was en route to Valparaiso, Chile. Recalled from her original mission, she took up patrol off Panama and in 1942 commenced escorting reinforcement convoys to the Galapagos Islands and Society Islands. It would go on to participate in the Battle of the Komandorski Islands in March 1943, a daylight surface engagement with the Imperial Japanese Navy in which the inferior American force escaped complete destruction mostly by luck. These remarkable dispatches signaled the start of World War II for America and the sailors aboard the USS Richmond.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.