Preservation, Education, and Commemoration of Naval History
On 24 January 1942, in the Battle of Makassar Strait, destroyers USS John D. Ford, USS Parrott, USS Pope, and USS Paul Jones attacked an anchored Japanese invasion force in the harbor of Balikpapan, Borneo. The high-speed night attack sank 4 of 12 enemy transports, though the number of transports sunk was reduced by poor U.S. torpedoes. This engagement was the first U.S. naval surface engagement in Asian waters since the Spanish-American War. Shown here is a circa 1920 photograph of USS John D. Ford (DD 228) from NHHC photo NH 53933.