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Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation

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Title: Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Allen M. Sumner-class destroyer, Gearing-class destroyer, Gridley-class destroyer, SS Alexander Macomb, USS Bailey (DD-269)
Collection: Defunct Shipbuilding Companies of the United States
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation

Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation
Formerly called
Bethlehem Steel Corporation
Industry Shipbuilding
Founded 1905 (1905) in Quincy, USA
Headquarters Quincy, Massachusetts, USA
Area served

Bethlehem Steel Corporation Shipbuilding Division was created in 1905 when Bethlehem Steel Corporation acquired the San Francisco shipyard Union Iron Works in 1905.[1] In 1917 it was incorporated as Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation, Limited; otherwise known as BethShip.

Headquarters were in Quincy, Massachusetts after acquiring Fore River Shipyard in 1913 and later in Sparrows Point, Maryland in 1964.

In 1940, it was number 1 of the Big 3 U.S. shipbuilders who could build any ship.[2] Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock and New York Shipbuilding Corporation (New York Ship) were #2 and #3. Bethlehem had 4 yards in early 1940: Fore River, Sparrows Point, San Francisco, and Staten Island. Bethlehem expanded during World War II as a result of the Emergency Shipbuilding program administered under the United States Maritime Commission.

The Quincy yard was sold to General Dynamics Corporation in the mid-1960s, and closed in 1986. The Alameda yard was closed by Bethlehem Steel in the early 1970s, while the San Francisco facility was sold to British Aerospace in the mid-1990s and survives as BAE Systems San Francisco Ship Repair.

Bethlehem Steel ceased shipbuilding activities in 1997 in an attempt to preserve its core steel making operations.


The following shipyards were owned by Bethlehem. They are listed in order of acquisition.


  1. ^ Bethlehem Steel Company Shipbuilding Division. A century of progress, 1849-1949: San Francisco Yard. San Francisco, 1949?
  2. ^ "Billion-Dollar Feast", TIME Magazine. May 20, 1940. Accessed August 20, 2007.
  3. ^
  4. ^ John Pike. "Bethlehem Shipbuilding, Sparrows Point MD". 
  5. ^
  6. ^ John Pike. "Mariners Harbor, Staten Island". 
  7. ^ John Pike. "Southwest Marine, San Pedro CA". 
  8. ^ John Pike. "Fairfield Shipyard". 
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^ Richard L. Porter, et al., Historic American Engineering Record No. NJ-95, "Bethlehem Steel Company Shipyard," 1994
  13. ^ John Pike. "Hoboken Shipyards". 
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^

External links

  • Ship christening photos, including at the Wilmington Yard
  • US Shipbuilding History - Maritime Business Strategies
  • US Navy Shipyards -
  • Bethlehem Steel Corporation and Bethlehem Ship Corporation photograph collection at Hagley Museum and Library
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