The USS South Dakota was launched at Camden, NJ June 7, 1941. The ship was in every major battle and was the most decorated ship of WWII from 1942 - 1945. It brought down 32 Jaanese planes and was the first ship to fire on the Japanese home islands.
By the Battle of Guadalcanal, the Japanese had reported on two different occasions that they had sunk the South Dakota. For security reasons she was thereafter referred to as Battleship X.
In 1962 the Navy announced they were going to scrap the battleship and citizens of South Dakota banded together to save part of the famous ship. They couldn't get the whole battleship into landlocked South akota, so they salvaged what parts they could, poured a foot high concrete outline onto the ground in Sherman Park along the banks of the Big Sioux River and placed the parts on the outline. These parts include the anchor, the ship's bell, a massive propeller, and an original 16-inch gun (weighing 94 tons). The outline is 680 feet in length.