Ship History


ABRAHAM LINCOLN was laid down on 1 November 1958 by the Portsmouth (N.H.) Naval Shipyard; launched on 14 May 1960; sponsored by Miss Mary Lincoln Beckwith, the great granddaughter of President Lincoln; and commissioned on 11 March 1961, Comdr. Leonard Erb (Blue Crew) and Comdr. Donald M. Miller (Gold Crew) in command.

The fleet ballistic missile submarine got underway on 20 March for shakedown and weapons testing at Cape Canaveral, Fla., and returned to Portsmouth on 1 June for post-shakedown availability. She left Portsmouth on 17 July to return briefly to Cape Canaveral for further testing and then proceeded to Charleston, S.C., for a final loadout. ABRAHAM LINCOLN subsequently got underway on 28 August as a unit of Submarine Squadron 14, Submarine Force, Atlantic Fleet. She arrived at Holy Loch, Scotland, in October. The submarine underwent a refit alongside PROTEUS (AS 19) during November and, upon its completion, commenced her first deterrent patrol.

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ABRAHAM LINCOLN operated out of Holy Loch for the next four years. She alternated periods of upkeep at Holy Loch alongside PROTEUS or HUNLEY (AS 31) with deterrent patrols from that port. A highlight of this period occurred during the Cuban crisis of October 1962. The submarine was in the middle of a scheduled four-week upkeep period when she received orders to deploy. ABRAHAM LINCOLN departed in short order and successfully carried out a 65-day patrol. On 13 October 1965, ABRAHAM LINCOLN arrived at Groton, Conn., and entered the Electric Boat Co. yard located there on 25 October to begin an overhaul and refueling.

This work was completed on 3 June 1967 and the submarine returned to her base at Holy Loch and resumed her schedule of deterrent patrols. She continued the pattern of alternating patrols with periods of upkeep alongside either SIMON LAKE (AS 33) or CANOPUS (AS 34) through 1972. In early March of that year, ABRAHAM LINCOLN sailed for the United States and arrived at the Submarine Base, New London, Conn., on 25 April. She held two dependents’ cruises before getting underway on 19 May for the west coast to join the Pacific Fleet. ABRAHAM LINCOLN made a brief visit to Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., transited the Panama Canal on 1 June, sailed to Bangor, Wash., to offload her missiles, then pushed on to San Francisco, Calif. On 25 June, ABRAHAM LINCOLN entered the Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Vallejo, Calif., to commence overhaul and refueling.

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The extensive overhaul was completed in December 1973. After shakedown in the areas around Puget Sound and San Diego, Calif., ABRAHAM LINCOLN transited the Panama Canal on 1 June 1974. She held tests and local operations at Cape Kennedy, Fla., and Charleston, S.C. The submarine retransited the canal on 26 July and sailed for her new home port, Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, where she arrived on 10 September. The submarine continued on to her advanced base at Guam, arriving on 18 October. The submarine then began deterrent patrols from that island in the Marianas. During the next four years, the warship carried out deterrent patrols from Guam. She also participated in numerous tests and exercises. In 1977, ABRAHAM LINCOLN became the first ballistic missile submarine to have conducted 50 strategic deterrent patrols.

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ABRAHAM LINCOLN completed her last patrol in October 1979 and arrived at Bangor, Wash., on 30 October to commence offloading her missiles before beginning inactivation overhaul. Preparations for her retirement continued through 1980 and into 1981. On 28 February 1981, ABRAHAM LINCOLN was decommissioned at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard. Her name was struck from the Navy list on 1 December 1982.