Todd Los Angeles Division
San Pedro CA
Late in the fall of 1945 a new division joined the Todd Corporation, Los Angeles Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Corporation at San Pedro, California. The Navy put this yard under Todd control when it had been in a financial struggle two years prior. During this time the San Pedro yard was a part of the short-lived Todd Pacific Shipyards, Inc. before becoming its own entity. Coming to the Todd industry in the postwar period, the Los Angeles yard took on various building projects to substitute the decreased shipbuilding interests. In the early fifties the Los Angeles Division underwent a large project for the amusement park Disneyland. This project included the construction of the park's steam flagship Mark Twain, the 18x5.5-foot gates for the park's graving docks, the parts for the 17th -century pirate ship attraction, the steel clad square-rigger Columbus, and eight 100-ton diesel-electric passenger submarines.
Since the times of peace called for conversion instead of construction, the Los Angeles Division executed some rebuilding projects. In 1956 the yard converted a standard wartime Landing Ship, Medium (LSM) to a wholly self-contained, self -sufficient offshore drilling barge for the expanding oil drilling industry of the West Coast. Another project, in 1958, resulted from the Navy order to convert the Mariner-class cargo ship Diamond Mariner to then the nation's largest and fastest attack transport, the USS Paul Revere (APA-248). These projects' being assigned to the private Todd yard was most likely due to the Navy's return to allotting repair work to private yards; this change in Naval policy was celebrated in the other Todd yards as well. The Los Angeles Division encountered jumboizing projects in the late 1950's. The Outcome of one jumboizing project was the launching of the largest hull in the Los Angeles area since the end of wartime shipbuilding. This famous hull was a new midsection added to the Richfield tanker David E.Day.
In 1966 Los Angeles completed the first postwar naval construction project in delivering the last of the ordered destroyers, the USS Fox (DLG-33). Over the years the Los Angeles Division has continued repairing, constructing, jumboizing, and converting ships. In 1970 there was a "homecoming", of a ship built in 1944 at the San Pedro drydocks, when the Navy repair ship Hector (R-7) returned for overhaul and upgrading. A financially uplifting construction project was finished in 1977 at the Los Angeles Division when the last of the three Zapata tankers was launched. In the 1981 the corporation anticipated much more success at the Los Angeles Division and due to this confidence Todd planned for the construction of a 12,000-ton syncrolift at the yard. Attention was turned on public relations and advertising to increase the yard's business. Yet, due to the competitive nature of the shipbuilding enterprise, the yard was starved for business and was closed by the middle of the 1980's.
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