5 Largest and Longest Aircraft Carriers Of WWII
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In this article, we’ll walk you through the largest aircraft carriers that served during WWII, ranking them according to their length:
Akagi was an aircraft carrier built for the Imperial Japanese Navy. Although she was initially made to be a battle cruiser, it was converted into an aircraft carrier while still under construction to comply with the terms of the Washington Naval treaty.
Akagi was completed at a length of 857 ft. with a standard displacement of 33,800 tons. This carrier served in the Second Sino-Japanese War in the late 1930s and participated in the Battle of Midway in June 1942.
4. USS Yorktown
The Yorktown was one of the 24 S6 class aircraft carriers built during WWII for the US Navy. Decommissioned shortly after the end of the war, she was modernized and recommissioned in 1953 as an attack carrier.
It served with distinction during the Korean War and also served during the Vietnam War, earning five battle stars.
The ship was 872 feet long and had a standard displacement of 27,100 tons.
Originally laid down as a Yamato-class battleship, she was only partially completed as an aircraft carrier by the time of her sinking in November 1944.
Shinano was the largest aircraft carrier on the list in terms of displacement. Her running length was 872 feet and the vessel weighed 65,800 tons under standard load and upwards of 69,000 tons under normal military loads.
2. USS Lexington
Nicknamed Lady Lex, she was the lead ship of the class of two aircraft carriers during the 1920s.
The Lexington was on the way to delivery when the attack on Pearl Harbor happened. The ship was lost to action against the Japanese in the Battle of Coral Sea on May 8, 1942. The Lexington was 888 ft long and had a standard displacement of 27,000 tons.
The USS Midway was an aircraft carrier formerly of the US Navy, the lead ship of the class. She was 1,100 feet long and displaced 45,000 tons.
Midway was the world’s largest and longest ship until 1955. It was also the first US aircraft carrier too big to transit the Panama Canal. She operated for 47 years seeing action in the Vietnam War, and served as the Persian Gulf flagship in Operation Desert Storm.