USS Mississippi,
Battleship (BB-23)
Later sold to Greece and rename Lemnos
Act of 3 March 1903:

"... The President is hereby authorized to have constructed by the contract or in navy-yards ... three first class battle ships carrying the heaviest armor and most powerful ordnance for vessels of their class upon a trial displacement of not more than sixteen thousand tons, and to have the highest practicable speed and great radius of action, and to cost, exclusive of armor and armament, not exceeding four million two hundred and twelve thousand dollars each; ... Said vessels ... in all their parts shall be of domestic machinery; and the steel material shall be of domestic manufacture, ... Not more than two of ... battle ships provided for in this act shall be built by one contracting party: ..."

The second Mississippi (BB-23) was laid down 12 May 1904 by William Cramp & Sons, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; launched 30 September 1905; sponsored by Miss M. C. Money, daughter of Senator H. P. Money of Mississippi; and commissioned at Philadelphia Navy Yard 1 February 1908, Capt. J. C. Fremont in command.
Following shakedown off the coast of Cuba, 15 February to 15 March 1908, the new battleship returned to Philadelphia for final fitting out. Standing out 1 July, she operated along the New England coast, until returning to Philadelphia 10 September. The warship next put to sea 16 January 1909 to represent the United States at the inauguration of the President of Cuba at Havana, 25 to 10 February, sailing that day to join the "Great White Fleet" as it returned from its famous world cruise. With the fleet on Washington;s Birthday, the battlewagon was reviewed by President Theodore Roosevelt. On  1 March she returned to the Caribbean.
The ship departed Cuban waters 1 May for a cruise up the river which shared her name, the mighty Mississippi. Calling at the major ports of this great inland waterway, she arrived at Natchez 20 May, and then proceeded 5 days later to Horn Island where she received a silver service from the State of Mississippi. Returning to Philadelphia 7 June, the battleship operated off the New England coast until sailing 5 January 1910 for winter exercises and war games out of Guantanamo Bay. The battleship departed 24 March for Norfolk and operated off the east coast until fall, calling at a number of large ports, serving as a training ship for Naval Militia, and engaging in maneuvers and exercises designed to keep the ship and crew in the finest possible fighting trim.
She departed Philadelphia 1 November for a fleet rendezvous at Gravesend Bay, England, 16 November, and then sailed 7 December for Brest, France, arriving on the 9th. On 30 December, Mississippi set course for Guantanamo Bay for winter maneuvers until 13 March 1911.
Returning to the United States, the battleship operated off the Atlantic coast, basing alternately out of Philadelphia and Norfolk for the next year and 2 months, serving as a training ship and conducting operational exercises. She cleared Tompkinsville, New York, 26 May 1912 with a detachment from the 2d Marine Regiment on board to protect American interests in Cuba. Landing her Marine detachment at El Cuero 19 June, she remained on station in Guantanamo Bay until 5 July, when she sailed for home.
Following exercises with the 4th Battleship Division off New England, she returned to Philadelphia Navy Yard where she was put in the 1st Reserve 1 August 1912.
Mississippi remained in the Atlantic Reserve Fleet at Philadelphia until detached 30 December 1913 for duty as aeronautic station ship at Pensacola, Florida. Departing 6 January 1914, the battleship arrived 21 January, transporting equipment for the establishment of a naval air station. At Pensacola, she stood by while her crew, along with the early naval aviators, rebuilt the old naval base, laying the foundation for the largest and most famous American naval air station.
With the outbreak of fighting in Mexico, Mississippi sailed 21 April to Vera Cruz, arriving on the 24th with the first detachment of naval aviators to go into combat. Serving as a floating base for the fledgling seaplanes and their pilots, the warship launched nine reconnaissance flights over the area during a period of 18 days, making the last flight 12 May. One month later, the battleship departed Vera Cruz for Pensacola. Serving as station ship there from 15 to 28 June, she then sailed north to Hampton Roads where she transferred her aviation gear to armored cruiser North Carolina (CA-12), 3 July.
On the 10th, Mississippi shifted to Newport News to prepare for transfer to the Greek Government. Mississippi decommissioned at Newport News 21 July 1914, and was turned over to the Royal Hellenic Navy the same day. Renamed Lemnos, the battleship served for the next 17 years as a coast defense vessel. She was sunk in an air attack by German bombers on Salamis harbor in April 1941; and, after World War II, her hull was later salvaged as scrap. 
Note: while the DANFS lists this ship as having been sold to Greece and renamed Lemnos, other sources state that she was renamed Kilkis.
USS Mississippi, Battleship (BB-23) Specifications
  • Length Overall: 382'
  • Extreme Beam: 77'
  • Normal Displacement:
    • Tons: 13,000
    • Mean Draft: 24'8"
  • Designed Complement:
    • Officers: 94
    • Enlisted: 710
  • Armor:
    • Belt: 9"
    • Turrets: 12"
    • Deck: 3" (aft)
    • Conning Tower: 9"
  • Designed Speed: 17
  • Designed Indicated Horsepower: 10,000
  • Engines:
    • Manufacturer: Cramp
    • Type: Vert. 3-Exp. Recip.
    • No.: 2
  • Screws: 2
  • Boilers:
    • Manufacturer: BW
    • No.: 8
  • Fuel (coal):
    • Tons: 1,800
  • Class: Mississippi
  • Main:
    • (4) 12"/45
    • (8) 8"/45
    • (8) 7"/45
  • Secondary:
    • (12) 3"/50
    • (4) 1 pdr.
    • (12) 3 pdr.
    • (4) .30 cal.
  • Torpedo Tubes:
    • (4) 21" submerged

USS Mississippi, Battleship (BB-23) Bibliography
Larry W. Jewell, Who's Who of United States Battleships, (Internet publication), edition: 30 August, 1993.
James L. Mooney, Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships, (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1964), Vol.1 -- A-B, p. 192
James L. Mooney, Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships, (Washington, D.C.: U.S. Government Printing Office, 1969), Vol.4: L-M, p. 388
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