Condensed from the original logs by Earl Faubion
3 May - Launched by Federal Shipbuilding and Drydock Co. Kearny, New Jersey.
29 Jun - Prepare for commissioning.
30 Jun - Commissioned at New York Navy Yard, Lt.Cmdr. William M. Cole, USN, commanding.
1 to 15 Jul - New York Navy Yard, outfitting.
16 Jul - Bayonne, New Jersey, degaussing calibration, anchored at Gravesend Bay.
17 Jul - Loaded ammunition.
18 Jul - Arrived Port Jefferson, Long Island.
19 to 20 Jul - Underway in Long Island Sound for calibrations, anchored Port Jefferson.
21 Jul - Underway to anchorage off Tomkinsville, Staten Island, New York.
22 Jul - Underway at 0830 for Guantanamo Bay, Cuba with O’BANNON.
23 to 24 Jul - Enroute Guantanamo Bay.
25 Jul - At 0954 arrived Guantanamo Bay.
26 Jul to 12 Aug - Guantanamo Bay area for training.
13 Aug - Searched for torpedoed merchant ships in Windward Passage with O'BANNON and COWIE, found wreckage and one body, searched for submarine.
14 Aug - Windward Passage, escorted convoy and picked up 89 survivors from torpedoed merchant ships. Returned to Guantanamo Bay and disembarked survivors.
15 to 17 Aug - Guantanamo Bay area, training.
18 Aug - Underway at 1700 for New York.
19 to 20 Aug - Enroute New York.
21 Aug - At 0807 anchored at Gravesend Bay to offload ammunition, underway at 1210, moored at Navy Yard, New York at 1310.
22 to 30 Aug - Navy Yard, New York for shakedown repairs and inspections.
31 Aug - Underway at 0749, enroute Norfolk, Virginia
1 Sep - Enroute Norfolk, 1700 joined by CLEVELAND and O’BANNON.
2 Sep - Escorted CLEVELAND to Delaware Bay, released at 0700, at 1643 moored in Norfolk.
3 Sep - Norfolk, provisioned for sea.
4 Sep - Underway at 0945 O’BANNON and ALBEMARLE enroute to Canal Zone, found stationary target in water and attacked four times with depth charges. Last attack brought up four airplane tires, contact classified non-submarine.
5 to 8 Sep - Enroute Canal Zone.
9 Sep - At 0805 arrived off Colon, Canal Zone, reported to CincPac for duty, fueled at Pier 16, Colon. Transited Canal, loaded depth charges at Coco Sola, moored at Pier 4 at Balboa.
10 Sep - Balboa, Canal Zone, refueled and prepared for sea.
11 Sep - Underway at 1100 with O'BANNON for Bora Bora, Society Islands.
12 to 24 Sep - Enroute Bora Bora.
25 Sep - Arrived Bora Bora.
26 to 27 Sep - At anchor in Teavanui Harbor.
28 Sep - Underway at 1300 with O'BANNON for Noumea, New Caledonia.
29 Sep to 4 Oct - Enroute Noumea. (3 Oct was skipped due to crossing Longitude 180 degrees.)
5 Oct - Arrived Noumea with O’BANNON, reported to Admiral Ghormley, Commander South Pacific.
6 Oct - Fueled and repair alongside WHITNEY and LACKAWANNA.
7 Oct - Underway with O'BANNON and COPAHEE for “fly off” off point south of Solomon Islands.
8 Oct - At 1100 HELENA and DUNCAN joined convoy, steaming as before. DUNCAN was sunk 3 days later.
9 Oct - Near Indispensable Reefs, at 1300 COPAHEE flew off 21 F4F aircraft for Henderson Field, Guadalcanal.
10 Oct - Enroute Noumea.
11 Oct - Arrived Noumea in company with O'BANNON and COPAHEE, anchored in Great Roads.
12 to 13 Oct - Noumea awaiting assignment.
14 Oct - Underway at 1526, rendezvous with LACKAWANNA at 2024, enroute area near Espiritu Santo.
15 Oct - Enroute Espiritu, depth charged sound contact with negative results, at 0305 sighted unidentified merchant ship, no response to challenge, no investigation made due to mission.
16 Oct - Enroute to Espiritu Santo with LACKAWANNA, at 1008 sighted unidentified plane and at 2330 small trawler, no contact made due to nature of mission.
17 Oct - Arrived Espiritu Santo at 0730, refueled from LACKAWANNA, anchored near channel entrance in defensive position.
18 Oct - Espiritu Santo at anchor.
19 Oct - Underway at 1814 with AARON WARD and LARDNER, enroute to Coral Sea.
20 Oct - Rendezvous with SAN FRANCISCO, HELENA, WASHINGTON, ATLANTA, CHESTER and their DD’s, CHESTER was torpedoed, returned to Espiritu Santo under own power escorted by FLETCHER and other DD’s.
21 Oct - At 1749 arrived Espiritu Santo.
22 Oct - Provisioned ship, underway at 1632 with SAN FRANCISCO, HELENA, BUCHANAN and WALKE, proceeded to Coral Sea via Bougainville Strait.
23 Oct - Enroute Coral Sea, gunnery exercises, joined by LAFFEY.
24 Oct - Enroute Coral Sea, at 1530 joined by WASHINGTON, ATLANTA, McCALLA and DD’s.
25 Oct - Task force 64 formed as follows: WASHINGTON, ATLANTA, LANSDOWNE, BUCHANAN, LARDNER McCALLA, SAN FRANCISCO, HELENA, AARON WARD, LAFFEY, NICHOLAS, FLETCHER, WALKE, and BENHAM, proceeding to engage the enemy. At 1249 hours fired on enemy plane, no further activity.
26 Oct - Steaming in vicinity of Russell Islands and Savo in battle formation, refueled from HELENA.
27 Oct - In Coral Sea, WALKE and LAFFEY detached.
28 Oct - At 0600 refueled from HELENA, split into smaller task force with ATLANTA, AARON WARD, LARDNER and BENHAM, gunnery training.
29 Oct - Enroute to Guadalcanal. General Quarters at 1900 hours for shore bombardment
30 Oct - Bombardment of Lunga Point, Guadalcanal at 0630. Ceased fire at 0845, expended 847 rounds of five inch ammunition, no opposition and no casualties.
31 Oct - Retired from Guadalcanal, at 1400 arrived at Espiritu Santo, refueled from GUADALUPE and rearmed from SS HINTON HELPER.
1 Nov - Underway at 1440 with ATLANTA, AARON WARD, BENHAM and LARDNER to support landing operations at Guadalcanal.
2 Nov - Proceeding with task group through Sealark Channel with orders to engage light enemy forces reported enroute to Guadalcanal, then received orders to retire eastward after enemy forces were found to be stronger than expected. FULLER and CONYNGHAM collided about 1000 yards on port bow
3 Nov - Retired south of San Cristobal Island with ATLANTA, AARON WARD, BENHAM and LARDNER, rendezvoused with task force for attack on enemy forces reported to the north. Task Group now composed of: SAN FRANCISCO, HELENA, BUCHANAN, LAFFEY, STERETT, HUNTER LIGGETT, BARNETT, PRES. HAYES, ATLANTA, AARON WARD, FLETCHER, BENHAM, LARDNER, GWIN, WALKE, McCALLA, MANLEY, McKEAN, NEVILLE, HEYWOOD, FOMALHAUT, PENSACOLA, CUSHING, PRESTON, MUSTIN and ANDERSON.
4 Nov - FLETCHER proceeded ahead of Task Group to Guadalcanal and Tulagi to scout for enemy with SC radar, none found. At 0721 hours spotted location of enemy gun firing on a transport, opened fire at 0730 at 15,000 yards and ceased fire at 0810. Expended 134 rounds and silenced the Japanese battery. Provided antiaircraft screen for transports unloading at Lunga Point. Rejoined ATLANTA, AARON WARD, BENHAM and LARDNER for the night.
5 Nov - Screened transports unloading at Lunga Point. At 0930 hours 27 bombers and 24 fighters spotted enroute to Guadalcanal. Departed via Nggela Channel, GWIN, BENHAM, WALKE detached. Task group now composed of ATLANTA, AARON WARD, FLETCHER, McCALLA, LARDNER, HUNTER LIGGETT, PRES. HAYES and BARNETT. At 1300 hours departed for Espiritu Santo.
6 Nov - Enroute to Espiritu Santo.
7 Nov - Arrived Espiritu Santo, refueled from GUADALUPE, anchored, loaded ammunition and supplies, began minor repairs.
8 Nov - At anchor in Segond Channel, Espiritu Santo, continued machinery repairs.
9 Nov - Departed for Guadalcanal with transports ZEILIN, BETELGEUSE, LIBRA and escorts ATLANTA, AARON WARD, FLETCHER, McCALLA and LARDNER.
10 Nov - Enroute to Guadalcanal, delivered depth charge attack on possible submarine contact, an enemy sea plane began shadowing the task force.
11 Nov - At 0315 proceeded ahead of the task force to search for enemy in the Savo Guadalcanal Tulagi area, none encountered. Rejoined task group screening unloading transports. At 0940 Japanese high level dive bombers attacked and dropped 10 bombs, transports got underway, no direct hits, ZEILIN was damaged by a near miss. Fletcher shot down one dive bomber with 20mm and 40mm AA guns. Transports resumed unloading, 27 bombers and 24 fighters approached at 20,000 ft., AA fire ineffective at that altitude. ZEILIN and LARDNER departed, task group retired eastward through Indispensable Strait and joined another task group. Formed a column as follows: BUCHANAN, STERETT, LAFFEY, CUSHING, SAN FRANCISCO, HELENA, ATLANTA, AARON WARD, McCALLA and FLETCHER.
12 Nov - Proceeded with striking force to Guadalcanal area. Task group expanded to include JUNEAU, PORTLAND, O’BANNON, BARTON, SHAW and MONSSEN. Screened transports PRES. JACKSON, PRES. ADAMS, McCAWLEY, CRESCENT CITY, LIBRA and BETELGEUSE which were unloading near Lunga Point. Task force underway in AA formation, FLETCHER astern of right hand column. Attacked by 21 Japanese torpedo planes, FLETCHER shot down 5, no torpedo hits scored, no damage or casualties. Transports resumed unloading in Lunga, combatant ships resumed screening. Later transports departed to Lengo Channel screened by BUCHANAN, McCALLA, SHAW, SOUTHARD and HOVEY. Striking force formed column and stood out to Sealark Channel in the following order: CUSHING, LAFFEY, STERETT, O’BANNON, ATLANTA, SAN FRANCISCO, PORTLAND, HELENA, JUNEAU, AARON WARD, BARTON, MONSSEN and FLETCHER. Set westward course through Indispensable Strait.
13 Nov - Engaged Japanese naval forces in the First Naval Battle of Guadalcanal. Afterwards joined up with HELENA and SAN FRANCISCO east of Sealark Channel. Then joined up with JUNEAU, STERETT and O’BANNON, took cruising formation. At 1102 hours JUNEAU was torpedoed by a Japanese submarine and blew up astern of FLETCHER. Remainder of formation retired to Espiritu Santo.
14 Nov - Departed Guadalcanal with HELENA, SAN FRANCISCO, STERETT and O’BANNON, later joined by BUCHANAN, arrived Espiritu Santo, refueled from GUADALUPE.
15 Nov - Unmoored from GUADALUPE and moved to anchorage, provisioned ship.
16 to 17 Nov - Anchored at Espiritu Santo, effected minor repairs.
18 Nov - Departed Espiritu Santo at 1825 to conduct A/S (anti-submarine) patrol near entrance to Segond Channel in the vicinity of Tutuba, Rogacio and Malo Islands.
19 to 22 Nov - Continued on A/S patrol.
23 Nov - Continued on A/S patrol, assigned to task force composed of NORTHAMPTON, PENSACOLA, NEW ORLEANS, HONOLULU, HELENA, LAWSON, NICHOLAS, O’BANNON, GRAYSON and MAURY.
24 Nov - Relieved from A/S patrol by MAURY, anchored near channel entrance on A/S listening watch, received 10 torpedoes from RIGEL.
25 Nov - Refueled from SABINE, return to anchorage.
26 Nov - Depart anchorage to relieve NICHOLAS on A/S patrol near channel entrance.
27 Nov - Relieved from patrol by GAMBLE, return to anchorage at Espiritu Santo.
28 Nov - Moored to new anchorage at west entrance of Segond Channel to take up A/S listening watch, refueled from GUADALUPE, then moored alongside MUSTIN.
29 Nov - At anchor, departed for Guadalcanal at 2305 hours.
30 Nov - Joined Task Force 67 composed of MINNEAPOLIS, NEW ORLEANS, PENSACOLA, HONOLULU, NORTHAMPTON, FLETCHER, MAURY, PERKINS, and DRAYTON, proceed at 27 knots to engage enemy landing force. Participated in the Battle of Tassafaronga with FLETCHER in the van.Contact made with enemy at 2308 hours, action started at 2322 firing torpedoes at a group of 5 ships. At 2323 all ships opened fire, 2325 ceased fire. Expended 10 torpedoes and 60 rounds of five inch ammunition, no damage or casualties. Retired toward Savo Island.
1 Dec - Proceeded to vicinity of Savo Island. NORTHAMPTON sank at 0257 hours. FLETCHER rescued 42 officers and about 700 enlisted men, assisted by DRAYTON. Departed with DRAYTON at 25 knots through Sealark Channel.
2 Dec - Joined up with HONOLULU, provided A/S screen with DRAYTON to Espiritu Santo. Moored to LACKAWANNA outboard of DRAYTON, fueled ship, transferred survivors to HONOLULU, moved to anchorage.
3 Dec - Anchored in Segond Channel, Espiritu Santo, provisioned ship, effected minor engineering repairs.
4 Dec - Anchored as before, engineering repairs.
5 Dec - Anchored as before, received 5 torpedoes from DRAYTON.
6 Dec - Departed at 1600 hours for A/S patrol off Coolidge and Undine passages relieving PC-479.
7 Dec - Continue A/S patrol, entered channel and refueled from GUADALUPE, anchored in western channel on A/S listening watch, departed with HONOLULU HELENA, SABINE and DRAYTON.
8 Dec - Joined Task Force 64, WASHINGTON, INDIANA, COLUMBIA, BALCH, DUNLAP and McCALL.
9 Dec - Proceeded to Coral Sea as task force, joined with NORTH CAROLINA, HULL and MONAGHAN. FLETCHER departed for Espiritu Santo with HONOLULU, HELENA, COLUMBIA, DRAYTON and HULL as Task Group 64.2.
10 Dec - Arrive Espiritu Santo, refueled from GUADALUPE, moored alongside THORNTON.
11 Dec - Espiritu Santo, reassigned to Task Force 67. At 1100 hours, Lt.Cdr. Frank Lesher Johnson, USN, relieved Cdr. William M. Cole, USN, as Commanding Officer. Took up A/S listening watch at anchor.
12 Dec - Relieved from A/S watch at 1800 by GAMBLE, shifted berth alongside LANG and MORRIS.
13 Dec - Espiritu Santo at anchor, designated as temporary squadron leader for Comtask Group 67.4.
14 Dec - Refueled from SABINE, returned to anchorage.
15 to 16 Dec - Espiritu Santo at anchor.
17 Dec - Underway for Coral Sea operations with LOUISVILLE, HONOLULU, HELENA, COLUMBIA, SAUFLEY, LANG and DRAYTON, cruisers in column, DD’s in circular screen.
18 to 19 Dec - Coral Sea, conducted battle exercises.
20 Dec - Coral Sea, battle exercises, refueled from LOUISVILLE.
21 Dec - Coral Sea, battle exercises. Sound contact at 1340, dropped 9 depth charges, contact classified non-submarine, rejoined task force.
22 Dec - Enroute Espiritu Santo, conducted battle exercises, arrived and anchored.
23 Dec - Espiritu Santo, refueled from SS ESSO ANNAPOLIS.
24 to 25 Dec - Espiritu Santo at anchor.
26 Dec - Underway for defensive patrol outside the harbor outbound of Araho and Malo Islands.
27 Dec - Relieved from patrol by LAMSON, refueled from SS ESSO ANNAPOLIS then moored alongside O’BANNON.
28 to 29 Dec - Espiritu Santo at anchor.
30 Dec - Underway for A/S exercises with ARGONAUT, relieved O’BANNON on patrol, conducted gunnery exercises.
31 Dec - Relieved from patrol by LAMSON, returned to Espiritu Santo and refueled from SS ESSO ANNAPOLIS, then anchored.