Page last updated: 23 September, 2016

Thanks to the U.S.S. Little Rock CL 92 Crew
from the
Town of Hollis, Maine

In her book "WILDFIRE LOOSE - The Week That Maine Burned" author Joyce Butler briefly refers to LITTLE ROCK's participation in helping quell blazes in the areas near the town of Hollis, ME.

•  On page 189 Miss Butler notes: "Army-Navy Day celebrations scheduled for Sunday (Oct. 26) were called off, not only in Maine, but in Boston. (The Navy's light cruiser Little Rock, in Boston for the occasion, headed to Maine with 1000 men to offer their services as firefighters).

•  On page 200 Miss Butler continues: "One hundred and twenty-five men from the U.S.  Navy's cruiser Little Rock were recalled from Hollis (Wednesday, October 29) to their ship in Portland harbor, already two days late in sailing for overseas duty."

Below are two letters received aboard the U.S.S. Little Rock CL 92 after the crew helped in extinguishing the fires that devastated much of Maine in 1947. These fires which are collectively referred to as "The Year That Maine Burned" were finally extinguished, due to in no small way, the efforts expended by the crew of the U.S.S. Little Rock, and other military units.

Below are re-typed versions of the letters received from First Naval District and the Town of Hollis, Maine
Refer To:  ND1/P15/03

Navy Building
495 Summer St., Boston, Mass.

28 November 1947

From:    Commandant, First Naval District.
To:         Commanding Officer, USS LITTLE ROCK                          CL 92.
Via:       (1)  Commander in Chief, U.S. Atlantic Fleet.
              (2)  Commander, Battleships-Cruisers,
                     U.S. Atlantic Fleet.
              (3)  Commander, Cruiser Division 10.

Subj:    Letter of Appreciation from the Town
             of Hollis, Maine.

Encl:    (A)    Subject Ltr., of 14 November 1947

1.    Enclosure (A) expresses the sincerest appreciation of the citizens of the town of Hollis, Maine for the assistance of the officers and men of the LITTLE ROCK during the recent fire disaster in Maine. The Commandant, First Naval District, has had many verbal comments on the excellent conduct and performance of duty by members of the crew of the LITTLE ROCK from other locations in Maine. All of these reflect credit on the LITTLE ROCK, and indicate that she is a well organized and efficient ship.

2.    The Commandant takes great pleasure in forwarding enclosure (A) to the Commanding Officer of the LITTLE ROCK.

 /s/ M.L. DEYO
 Rear Admiral USN

November 14, 1947

Commander First Naval District

Dear Sir:
    On behalf of the citizens of this town we wish to express their sincerest appreciation for the men and equipment dispatched to this area during the recent great fire. The men and officers from the cruiser U.S.S. “Little Rock” certainly were a great help in diverting the fire around small villages, in fact, without this cooperation and equipment, working in conjunction with the fire departments of surrounding cities and towns it is doubtful if some of them would have been saved. These men worked as if their own homes were endangered and conducted themselves with the greatest dignity throughout their stay. We are all deeply indebted to those in the Navy who helped us and hope this message will be relayed to them.

                        Yours truly,

                        /s/ Lester J. Grant          
                        /s/ Parker D. Bryon       
                        /s/ Warren L. Walker     
Below are copies of the original letters as received from First Naval District and the Town of Hollis, Maine
1st Naval Dist Hollis Letter

Hollis Letter

Back to Home Page
Back to History & Facts
Back to Chronologies
The Year That Maine Burned