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Home > August 2013 > The Submarine Growler Celebrates 55 Years Since Commissioning
The Submarine Growler Celebrates 55 Years Since Commissioning
Posted: 8/30/2013 9:34:54 AM

Growler on commissioning day, August 30, 1958

Today is the 55th anniversary of the Commissioning of the submarine USS Growler (SSG-577), one of the highlights of a visit to the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum. Growler is the only missile submarine open to the public in the United States.

On August 30, 1958, the submarine USS Growler was commissioned at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard. Growler was designed to carry, launch, and guide Regulus I nuclear missiles. Between 1960 and 1963, Growler conducted eight strategic deterrent patrols in the western Pacific, each of which lasted about two to three months. Growler patrolled near Russian territory, thereby deterring the Soviet Union from launching an attack on the United States.


A visit to Growler immerses visitors in the history and technology of the Cold War 1950s and 1960s. Visitors have an opportunity to view Growler’s missile checkout and guidance center, a formerly top-secret compartment. During a patrol, about 90 to 100 men served on board Growler. Museum visitors get a firsthand glimpse at life on board a submarine as they walk through the crew’s eating and sleeping quarters. Other spaces open to the public include the control room and attack center, navigation compartment, and engine room.

Growler was decommissioned on May 25, 1964 and was scheduled to be destroyed as a test target. In 1989, Growler became part of the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum complex.

Today, we wish Growler a very happy 55th commissioning anniversary! We look forward to sharing the story of Growler and the men who served on board for many years to come.