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The wreck of the 1958 submarine Stickleback has been found. - video

The Lost 52 Project’s wreck search team has located and identified the wreck of the submarine USS Stickleback, which sank in 1958. The US submarine sank after being accidentally rammed by another US Navy vessel – the escort destroyer USS Silverstein. It is worth mentioning that Stickleback is the third US submarine found of the
Published: March 23, 2020 - 12:15
Updated: July 22, 2023 - 19:28
The wreck of the 1958 submarine Stickleback has been found. – video

The Lost 52 Project’s wreck search team has located and identified the wreck of the submarine USS Stickleback, which sank in 1958.

The US submarine sank after being accidentally rammed by another US Navy vessel – the escort destroyer USS Silverstein. It is worth mentioning that Stickleback is the third US submarine found of the four that have been lost since the end of World War II.

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USS Stickleback (SS-415) was a 95 metre long Balao class submarine commissioned in March 1945. She departed from the island of Guam in Micronesia in early August 1945 to patrol the Sea of Japan. Before she reached her destination, however, the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki took place and an armistice was declared shortly thereafter.

USS Stickleback submarine wreck

In 1946, the ship was transferred to California, where it began to function in a new role. Since then, USS Stickleback became a training unit of the US Navy. Then, in 1953-54, it supported UN forces during the Korean War, and later returned to carrying out training tasks.

USSSticklebackSonarImage

Sinking of the USS Stickleback

On 28 May 1958, near Hawaii, together with the USS Silverstein and a torpedo catcher, she took part in wartime manoeuvres. The main objective was anti-submarine warfare. After completing a simulated torpedo attack on the USS Silverstein, the submarine submerged to a safe depth, where a malfunction occurred. Following this, Stickleback surfaced a short while later, just 180 metres ahead of the destroyer USS Silverstein.

There was a collision, which is captured in the photograph below. The crew of the damaged vessel was taken aboard the above-mentioned torpedo boat. The crew of the damaged vessel was taken on board of the above mentioned torpedo catcher. Unfortunately, the damage to the ship was too extensive and the vessel could not be saved from sinking.

Stickleback

A scientific team led by US researcher Tim Taylor has found the wreck of a lost ship near Hawaii. The USS Stickleback rests at a depth of 3.3km and, as well as suffering severe collision damage, was also broken in two during its final journey to the ocean floor.

USS Stickleback submarine wreck

The Lost 52 Project was initiated in October 2010 by Tim Taylor. At that time he found the wreck of the submarine USS R-12, coming from the times of the Second World War. Since then, project participants have been carrying out a step-by-step mission to search for 52 missing American submarines. Locating the wreck of the submarine USS Stickleback is their latest success.

Over the past decade, the wrecks of 6 of the 52 sought-after vessels have been located thanks to the activities carried out under this initiative (5 more have been found independently). In November 2019 we reported on the discovery of the wreck of the USS Greyback. It is undoubtedly worth mentioning that the scientists gathered around the Lost 52 Project do not only search for wrecks. They also make accurate documentation of the found vessels, including the creation of very precise 3D models.

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About author

Tomasz Andrukajtis
Editor-in-chief of the DIVERS24 portal and magazine. Responsible for obtaining, translating and developing content. He also supervises all publications. Achived his first diving certification – P1 CMAS, in 2000. Has a degree in journalism and social communication. In the diving industry since 2008.
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