The USS is Decommissioned: March 31, 1992

US Navy Archives

The USS Missouri, aboard which President Harry S. Truman accepted the surrender of Japanese forces on September 2, 1945, was decommissioned on this date in 1992 in preparation for the Iowa-class battleship to become a museum.

The ship had been decommissioned once before in 1955 after seeing service during the Korean War. However, the ship was later recommissioned in 1986 and once again became active for a brief period. In our article about the historic ship, Ron Soodalter explains this brief second period of service:

“Decommissioned and placed in mothballs in 1955, she was reconditioned, modernized, and activated in 1984–86. Now equipped with the capacity to launch long-range, jet-powered, subsonic cruise missiles, she was the first ship to fire Tomahawk missiles during Operation Desert Storm in 1991.

The following year, USS Missouri was decommissioned for the second and final time. Battleships in general are not used in a modern navy, and the battleship era is considered over. Her service, however, was far from over. Since 1999, the refurbished warship has sat on Battleship Row, Ford Island, Pearl Harbor, where she is open to the public as the centerpiece of the Battleship Missouri Memorial. USS Missouri, witness to—and site of—one of the most dramatic moments in human history, holds the distinction of being the last battleship in the world to have seen active service.”