Located in the Indiana World War Memorial in Indianapolis Indiana sits an unusual relic of a mostly forgotten voyage that helped to change history. Join us today as we examine it and the circumstances that led to it being left largely in the shadows.
Launched in 1931, the USS Indianapolis (CA 35) weighed 10,000 tons and was 610 feet long. From the Portland Class of cruisers, The Indianapolis was built to meet the standards imposed by interwar treaties.
Book on display in the museum celebrating the first voyage of the ship in 1932. A few months after this voyage, President Roosevelt, and old navy man himself, would be a passenger on the ship.
Whatever the facts were, after years of struggle, including receiving hatemail from families of his fallen crew, Capt. McVay killed himself in 1968. The second generation naval officer used his service revolver to commit suicide in his backyard. He was said to have been found holding a toy soldier, a gift that his father had given him years before.
Also on display are the various momentos of the fallen, including this medal grouping and photo of Robert Clyde Lamb, who died on the ship's final voyage. If you get the chance to visit the Indiana World War Memorial, which is free of cost, I high advise that you do.
A video interview with survivor Edgar Harrell, where he describes his experience on the final voyage of the Indianapolis. He has written a book about his experiences titled Out of the Depths. Other interviews are available on youtube, and do a better job of telling this story than I ever will.