Launched in 1928, the USS Panay was one of five shallow draft river gunboats built to protect American interests along the Yangtze River during the Chinese civil war. Her distinctive appearance owed as much to creating impressions as it did to naval architecture. According to the Design History "It is important as a factor in American influence in China that these vessels outclass in smartness of finish and appearance the gunboats of all other nationalities".Displacing 450 tons and 180' in length, the Panay was armed with two 3"/50 caliber guns and an assortment of .30 caliber weapons. On 12 December 1937 Panay was in the process of evacuating American nationals from Nanking prior to the the Japanese occupying the city. She was unexpectedly attacked by Japanese dive bombers and fighters. Severely damaged, her decks awash and sinking fast, she was ordered abandoned. The Japanese government's immediate apology and willingness to make reparations kept the Panay's sinking from leading to more serious hostilities. The Iron Shipwright USS Panay is a 1:192 scale one-piece full hull model.
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