Built in New Orleans by Higgins Industries, the patrol-torpedo (PT) boat PT-305 was a critical asset for the US Navy during World War II, serving in European waters from 1944 to the end ofthe war. Heavily armed, equipped with advanced technology, uniquely maneuverable, often ingeniously modified, and reliant on cooperation and teamwork, PT boats were a perfect naval expression of the American Spirit at war. With small crews within collaborative 12-ship squadrons, they were also the home to a colorful collection of Navy sailors and a dramatic backdrop for moving personal stories of war, including the trials of cramped quarters, the terrifying thrill of combat, and humorous tales of shore-leave escapades.
Following her wartime service, PT-305 served as a New York tour boat, a fishing charter, and an oyster boat, undergoing modifications along the way: new, less-costly engines; several newpaint jobs; and a dramatic reduction in length. When she was acquired by The National WWII Museum, PT-305 was in dry dock in Galveston, Texas, and in serious disrepair. In April 2007, accompanied by Museum curators, PT-305 found her way back to New Orleans, where The National WWII Museum became her home on land until she could be restored to her former glory.