Destroyer Escort Commanding Officers Collection: Richard E. Warner Papers

1938-1953, 1992-1993
Manuscript Collection #564-009
Creator(s)
Warner, Richard E., -2005
Physical description
1.07 Cubic Feet, 2 boxes and 1 oversize folder; 57 items. 191 p
Preferred Citation
Destroyer Escort Commanding Officers Collection: Richard E. Warner Papers (#564-009), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.
Repository
ECU Manuscript Collection
Access
No restrictions

Papers (1938–1993 [Bulk: 1938–1953]), of U.S. Naval Reserve officer and destroyer escort commander, including official files and service records, and a History of USS SC-631; postwar correspondence relating to the Destroyer Escort Commanders Organization (DECO); a History of the USS Kendall C. Campbell (DE-443), by Cdr. Richard E. Warner; a scrapbook, compiled by Cdr. Warner's father, entitled Sub Chaser Navy: World War II, which documented the achievements of destroyer escorts, and Warner's service in destroyer escorts, patrol craft, and sub-chasers; also oversize material including a blueprint of USS PC-497 [renamed SC-497]; and a laminated fact sheet entitled United States Ship USS Kendall C. Campbell (DE-443) including orders, letters, printed forms, certificates, commissions, and documents signed by Admiral Chester Nimitz; Secretaries of the Navy Frank Knox, Francis P. Matthews, Claude A. Swanson, and James Forrestal; by Governor of California Frank F. Merriam.


Biographical/historical information

Richard Elon Warner grew up in Piedmont, a residential town in the San Francisco Bay Area, entirely surrounded by Oakland, California. He became an Eagle Scout and Sea Scout, which sparked his interest in sailing and the Navy. Warner attended the University of California - Berkley where he joined the Navy Reserve Officers Training Course (ROTC). He graduated in 1938 and reported for duty in the U.S. Naval Reserve in 1939. Warner went through several sub-chaser training centers and was assigned to the sub chaser, USS SC-631, from 24 June 1942 to 31 August 1943. He was then transferred to the patrol craft USS PC-1245, where he served from 31 August 1943 to 24 September 1944. The Navy then assigned Warner to be executive officer of the destroyer escort USS Kendall C. Campbell (DE-443) from 24 September 1944 to 4 June 1945. In the final days of World War II, Warner was promoted to be commanding officer of destroyer escort USS George (DE-697). He commanded the George from 4 June to 16 October 1945, when the Navy released him from active duty. The Destroyer Escort (DE) and Patrol Class ships (PC), were part of the submarine chaser (SC) series. Following World War II, Cdr. Warner became an active member of the Destroyer Escort Commanders Organization (DECO) and participated in raising funds for restoration of several ships. He passed away 8 February 2005 at his home in Lodi, California.

See also: Online obituary by Pat Perrella available at: http://www.desausa.org/de_photo_library/uss_kendall_c_campbell_de443.htm.


Scope and arrangement

The Destroyer Escort Commanding Officers Association Collection / Ricard E. Warner Papers is arranged in original order:

Box 1, Folder a consists of official Navy personnel files. The files are his official orders, certificates, commissions, autobiographical notes, and identification photographic prints, while in the United States Naval Reserve (USNR). This files also includes his orders to report for reserve duty on 19 October 1939; his orders to report for active duty as well as to report to different submarine chaser training centers; to serve on the sub chaser, USS SC-631, dated 24 June 1942; to serve on the patrol craft USS PC-1245, dated 31 August 1943; to serve as the executive officer of the destroyer escort Kendall C. Campbell (DE-443) on 24 September 1944; and includes notes documenting his service as commander of the destroyer escort USS George (DE-697) 4 June–16 October 1945. The file also includes Warner's release from active duty in 16 October 1945. The official files include letters and documents relating to his naval career signed by Admiral Chester Nimitz; Secretaries of the Navy Frank Knox, Francis P. Matthews, Claude A. Swanson & James Forrestal; and by Governor of California Frank F. Merriam. Folder a also includes a copy of a History of the USS SC-631.

USS SC-631 (formerly the PC-631) was a SC-497 class submarine chaser. She was laid down on 27 January 1942 by the Mathis Yacht Building Co. in Camden, New Jersey and launched on 19 June 1942. She was commissioned on 19 August 1942 and was transferred to the U.S. Maritime Commission, 5 March 1948. Her subsequent fate is not known. The sub chaser's role is to track down enemy submarines before they attack friendly ships.

Box 1, Folder b consists of correspondence (1992–1993) between Richard E. Warner and John A. Williamson and Warner and Heath Angelo Jr. relating to war stories and how to get the USS George (DE-697) to win a special award.

USS George (DE-697) was a Buckley-class destroyer escort. She was the second ship of the United States Navy named after Seaman Second Class Eugene F. George (1925–1942), who won the Navy Cross (posthumously) for his heroism on USS San Francisco at the Naval Battle of Guadalcanal. George was laid down on 22 May 1943 at the Defoe Shipbuilding Company, in Bay City, Michigan. She was launched on 14 August 1943 and commissioned at New Orleans, Louisiana, on 20 November 1943. Box 1, Folder c consists of an excerpt from Warner's war diary, giving a brief chronological account of the history of the USS Kendall C. Campbell (DE-443).

USS Kendall C. Campbell was a John C. Butler-class destroyer escort. Destroyer escorts escorted and protected ships in convoys; they also performed other tasks such as patrol or radar picket duty. During World War II she earned four battle stars. The Campbell was named in honor of Kendall Carl Campbell who was twice awarded the Navy Cross, once during the New Guinea campaign and again during the Battle of the Coral Sea. USS Kendall C. Campbell was launched 19 March 1944 by the Federal Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., Newark, New Jersey; she was commissioned 31 July 1944, Lt. Comdr. R. W. Johnson in command. She served during the naval campaigns in the Leyte Gulf, Lingayen Gulf, Iwo Jima, and Okinawa. After the war, she was assigned to the Reserve Fleet and, on 15 January 1973, she was sold for scrapping.

Box 2, Folder a consists of a scrapbook entitled Sub Chaser Navy World War II (1938–1953) compiled by Richard E. Warner's father consisting of newspaperand magazine clippings, photographs and advertisements. The magazine and newspaper articles within the scrapbook relate mainly to the purpose and building of submarine chasers and destroyer escorts. These are relevant because Warner served or was executive officer on both types of vessels. Within the scrapbook are many propaganda advertisements. Most of the advertisements are from General Motors, General Electric, and Rheem Manufacturing Company. These ads talk about their role in building the vessels. They give details about what their companies are doing to help the war effort as well as urging readers to buy war bonds. Propaganda advertisements were important to the World War Two effort, and these images along with persuasion to buy war bonds are rather intriguing.

Oversize materials consists of one oversize folder containing two items. The first item is a outboard profile blueprint of the USS PC-497 designed by Sparkman and Stephens, Inc., New York, New York during 27 May - 17 November 1941. The Bureau of Ships Plan number is Basic 425783-ALT.I and the contractor plan number is 392-34. The size of the blueprint is 91" by 30".

USS PC-497 was a SC-497 class submarine chaser that served in the United States Navy and later the Free French Navy, 1942–1945. Laid down as PC-497 on 29 November 1941 by the Westergard Boat Works in Rockport, Texas, she was launched on 4 July 1941 and commissioned as USS PC-497 on 16 October 1942. Reclassified as a SC-497 class submarine chaser she was renamed SC-497. On 18 March 1944, she was transferred to the Free French Navy and renamed CH-96. She was then re-named first CH-724 in 1952 and then P-724. She was withdrawn from service on 23 October 1980. Her subsequent fate is not known.

The second item in the oversize folder is a history of the USS Kendall C. Campbell. The document measures 18" by 12" and is laminated.


Administrative information
Custodial History

March 15, 1989, 69 items, 1 volume; Papers (1938-1953), including a scrapbook Sub Chaser Navy and official files of WWII destroyer escort officer. Donor: Cdr. Richard E. Warner, USNR (Ret)

April 21, 1993, 1 item; Copy of history of USS Kendall C. Campbell (DE-443). Donor: Cdr. Richard E. Warner, USNR

October 5, 1994, 11 items; Correspondence (1992-1993), a history of the USS SC-631, and a blueprint for PC-497. Donor: Cdr. Richard E. Warner, USNR (Ret)

Source of acquisition

Gift of Cdr. Richard E. Warner, USNR (Ret)

Processing information

Encoded by Apex Data Services, March 2002; Preliminary inventory by Amanda Switzer, 4/15/2010; Arrangement, Description, Preliminary inventory revised by Jonathan Dembo and Lyndsey Sweet, 4/23/2013; Finding aid, container list by Lyndsey Sweet, 5/7/2013; revised by Jonathan Dembo, 11/19/2013.

Copyright notice

Literary rights to specific documents are retained by the authors or their descendants in accordance with U.S. copyright law.


Related material

Richard E. Warner Oral History Interview, October 17, 1994 (Oral History #OH0146), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.


Key terms
Personal Names
Warner, Richard E., -2005
Corporate Names
Kendall (Ship)
United States. Naval Reserve
United States. Navy--Officers
Topical
Destroyer escorts
Shipbuilding--United States
Submarine chasers
World War, 1939-1945--Naval operations, American

Container list
Box 1 Folder b Correspondence (1991–1993) regarding Destroyer Escort Commanders & DECO. Photocopy typescripts; Photocopy holographs. 7 items. 12 p
Box 1 Folder c History of USS Kendall C. Campbell (DE-443) condensed from his War Diary by Richard E. Warner, 1944–1945 (9 April 1993) Photocopy holograph. 1 item. 11 p
Box 2 Folder a Sub Chaser Navy World War II Scrapbook, containing clippings of magazine articles, newspaper articles, and photographs relating to Cdr. Richard E. Warner, USNR (Ret); the areas he worked during World War II; and various sub chasers, compiled by Warner's father (1938-1953) Looseleaf scrapbook. 1 vol, 85 p
Folder os1 USS PC-497 Outboard Profile Drawing, by Sparkman & Stephens, Inc., New York, NY, Bureau of Ships Plan No. Basic 425783 - Alt. 1 (10 July 1941). Blueprint. 91" x 30";1 items, 1 p. | USS Kendall C. Campbell (DE-443) fact sheet, including origin of name, history, service medals and battle stars (ca. 1993). Laminated broadside. 12" x 18". 1 item, 1 p