Books

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Baked Beans Volume 1:
Life aboard the USS BOSTON CA-69
by Steve Kelly

97.5% original, first hand, primary source material, including: photos of the Boston from the National archives; interviews with 4 crew members, diary entries from 2 crew members, original photos, documents and memorabilia submitted by family members, official action reports by the captain, and a few pages from the USS Boston Cruise Book.

Material is presented – as much as possible – from the sailor’s point of view, and while it follows “chronological order by month”, it is mostly a look at what it was like to be aboard the heavy cruiser during the Pacific War in WWII.

Volume 1 opens with the christening of the ship (Aug 26, 1942) by Mrs. Tobin, wife of the Mayor of Boston, and flows through Commissioning, Shakedown Cruises, transiting the Panama Canal, and onto Pearl Harbor.  After a month and a half in Pearl, the Boston is part of the assault on the Marshall Islands.  In early March, the crew gets a rowdy initiation into the Realm of King Neptune, followed by action off New Guinea.  In mid June, the men participate in the battle of the Philippine Sea. On July 4th, the Boston is the lead ship in the bombardment of Iwo Jima. The book ends with the men spending the entire month of August, 1944 anchored the lagoon at Eniwetok.

Baked Beans Volume 2:
Life aboard the USS BOSTON CA-69
by Steve Kelly

Volume II relates the events from Sept 1, 1944 through the end of March 1945 when the ship returned to San Pedro, CA for repairs. During this half-year, the Boston participated in the Philippines Campaigns and Iwo Jima. The incredible story of the crippling of two US cruisers by enemy torpedo bombers off the coast of Formosa (Taiwan) and the subsequent retreat (with Boston towing torpedoed cruiser Houston) comes alive in these pages. The men relate some memories of the harrowing Typhoon Cobra that claimed three destroyers and 800 men. First hand accounts of what they witnessed on Iwo Jima will not disappoint you!

Like Vol. I, this book is loaded with primary-source materials: photos from the National Archives, official War Reports from the Boston and Cruiser Division 10, diary entries from two of the crew members, and first hand-accounts from men who lived through the events!

Baked Beans – Volume 3:
Life Aboard USS Boston CA-69
by Steve Kelly

The Surrender (Sept. 2, 1945) did not represent the end of the story for the ship and her crew. The men were assigned post-War demilitarization (Occupation Duty) duties, spending an extra six months off the shores of Japan. Readers of this book will meet, for the first time ever in print, Marine Major Norman C. Bayley, commander of the ship’s Marine Detachment. He was asked to gather intelligence on the ground hours after the bombs went off in Hiroshima and Nagasaki – the first American in. In Norm’s own words, he tells of his “forage” into enemy territory – bristling with soldiers and thousands of wounded civilians. Readers will also see diary entries, first hand accounts from men who were there, official documents and declassified photos from the National Archives.

A Bird’s Eye View of the Heavy Cruiser USS Boston and Task Force 58 in Combat Operations Against the Empire of Japan
by Steve Kelly

In January 1944, the US Navy warships of Task Force 58 began advancing across the Central Pacific, attacking the defenses of the Empire of Japan, island by island.  A year and a half later, the ships were anchored in Tokyo Harbor for the signing of Japan’s unconditional surrender.

Experience this remarkable group of ships’ dramatic combat operations as seen through the eyes of Signalman 1st Class William Kelly from his vantage point high above the decks on the signal bridge of the heavy cruiser, USS Boston CA-69.

Read as the great offensive campaigns unfold: the capture of the Marshall and Mariana Islands, the Hollandia offensive, the operations to liberate the Philippines; then follow the Task Force as Iwo Jima and Okinawa are captured and Japan itself attacked. Experience the devastating Typhoon Cobra.  Read about the famous Battles of the Philippine Sea; the Marianas Turkey Shoot; the nail-biting tow of the crippled heavy cruisers Canberra and Houston, damaged in the Battle of Formosa; and the tragic sinking of the Indianapolis.

This fascinating and informative non-fiction book, 384 pages long, includes many historic photos and maps created by the author.