Christening & Launch
Bath, Maine, 17 February 1943
Abbot prepared for launch, decorated stem to stern with colorful signal flags. Note the flag-draped platform for the christening party.
Abbot shortly before launch. The shoring was released at the moment of launch.
Christening party: Capt. Russell Snow Hitchcock, escort; John F. Fletcher, son of Grace Abbot Fletcher; Kristin Fletcher, daughter of Grace Abbot Fletcher; Grace Abbot Fletcher, the sponsor; Priscilla Fletcher, daughter of Grace Abbot Fletcher; Mrs. Eugene C. Fletcher, daughter of Grace Abbot Fletcher; Abbot Fletcher, son of Grace Abbot Fletcher; and Archibald M. Main, executive vice-president of Bath Iron Works.
Grace Abbot Fletcher christening Abbot. The red, white and blue wrapping around the Champagne bottle is still in possession of the Fletcher family.
Grace Abbot Fletcher christening the United States Ship Abbot.
Abbot sliding into the Kennebec River. Very few of the future Abbot crew were present at the launch; the passengers visible on the ship were probably Bath Iron Works employees.
Abbot afloat for the first time. Heavy snow is falling, and the Bath Iron Works house flag flies from the mainmast.
Abbot adrift amidst snow and ice in the Kennebec River moments after launch. Note that weapons, including the distinctive 5-inch guns, are not installed.