Newport News Shipbuilding's Main Office Building, currently known as “Building 86,” under construction in November 1890.
Tugboat Dorothy sits at Newport News Shipbuilding’s outfitting pier following completion. She was the first hull built by NNS and was delivered to the New York and Northern Railway Company on April 30, 1891.
Apprentice School classroom circa 1900s.
The first submarine built at Newport News Shipbuilding was only 73 feet long and had retractable wheels so that it could crawl along the ocean floor. The year was 1904 and the shipyard, under contract to submarine pioneer Simon Lake, built a total of eight submarines. Though a brief foray into underwater sea power, the Lake subs laid the foundation for the shipyard’s long history of building submarines for the silent service. In the image below, two Simon Lake submarines are under construction at NNS in 1905.
Women file edges on thousands of bronze steam turbine blades and packing pieces for use in torpedo boat destroyers being built by Newport News Shipbuilding in 1918. Machining the blades produced burrs, so each piece was required to be filed by hand during the World War I building effort. After the blades were filed, they were returned to the Machine Shop for additional work.
An aerial view of the shipyard taken by a U.S. Navy photographer in February 1923. A car float occupies Dry Dock 1, the battleship West Virginia (BB 48) is at Pier 3 (now Pier 6), and the SS Leviathan is at Pier 1 (now Pier 5).
Newport News Shipbuilding-built aircraft carrier USS Ranger (CV 4) in 1934. Ranger was the first ship of the U.S. Navy to be designed and built from the keel up as an aircraft carrier.
A shipbuilder rivets aluminum plates to SS United States in March 1951.
On June 23, 1951, Newport News Shipbuilding christened and launched the luxury passenger liner SS United States. Also known as “America’s Flagship,” SS United States’ superstructure consisted of 23 public rooms, 395 staterooms and 14 first-class suites. She was 100 feet longer than the Titanic and was capable of carrying 2,000 passengers and 1,000 crew members.
Aerial view of the christening ceremony for Enterprise (CVN 65), held at Newport News Shipbuilding on September 24, 1960. Enterprise joined the U.S. Navy’s fleet in 1961 as the first supercarrier powered by nuclear reactors. “Big E” aided in the Cuban Missile Crisis and operations Enduring Freedom and New Dawn, as well as naval maritime security operations. To the left of Dry Dock 10, sits the ballistic missile submarine USS Robert E. Lee (SSBN 601).
On May 27, 1967, Newport News Shipbuilding held a launching ceremony for aircraft carrier John F. Kennedy (CV 67). More than 30,000 people were in attendance at the ceremony.
A shipbuilder gives a demonstration of the ROVR (rapid operational virtual reality), a tool used to increase construction efficiencies, circa 1990s.
USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) passes USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) as she arrives at Newport News Shipbuilding on March 28, 2013. At the time, Roosevelt was in its final stages of refueling and complex overhaul (RCOH).
USS Enterprise (CVN 65) arrived at Newport News Shipbuilding on June 20, 2013 for her inactivation. “Big E” is the first supercarrier to undergo an inactivation, which includes defueling of the ship’s eight reactors and preparing the hull for final dismantlement.
In December 2013, Newport News Shipbuilding officially opened the doors to its new Apprentice School. The 90,000-square foot building tripled the school's instructional space with facilities that include eight computer labs, two video teleconferencing classrooms, a physics lab and a 600-seat gymnasium. The school can accommodate about 850 apprentices and provides office and workspace for faculty, adjunct faculty and staff.
Shipbuilders, sailors and U.S. Navy personnel test the capabilities of John Warner (SSN 785) during builder’s sea trials. Warner is the 12th Virginia-class submarine to be delivered to the U.S. Navy and the only Virginia-class submarine to bear the name of a person.
In April 2017, USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) embarked on builder’s sea trials. The trials included a demonstration of the carrier’s capabilities and provided an opportunity for shipbuilders, sailors and U.S. Navy personnel to test systems, components and compartments at sea.
Newport News Shipbuilding President Jennifer Boykin met with shipbuilders during town hall sessions in June 2017. Boykin is the 20th president of NNS and the first woman to serve in the position.
Enterprise (CVN 80) Ship's Sponsors Simone Biles and Katie Ledecky give the order to, "Cut that steel!" during the aircraft carrier’s first cut of steel ceremony in August 2017.
Newport News Shipbuilding’s Joint Manufacturing Assembly Facility (JMAF) opened in 2017. The state-of-the-art facility supports submarine and aircraft carrier construction and features multiple worksites, advanced technology, automated equipment, heavyweight cranes, large transportation doors and specialty paint bays.
Aircraft carrier John F. Kennedy (CVN 79), which is currently under construction at Newport News Shipbuilding. Kennedy is being built using modular construction, a process where smaller sections of the ship are welded together to form larger structural units