Norfolk was the first of 39 fast task force escorts classified as DL, DLG or DLGN at some time after commissioning. All the others were named for people or states. Four were initially classified as destroyers (DD).
On 30 June 1975, the twelve Mitscher-, Farragut- and Coontz-class ships still in commission were reclassified as guided missile destroyers (DDGs 35–46). All other frigates then in commission, the Leahy, Bainbridge, Belknap, Truxtun and California classes and two ships of the Virginia class* were reclassified as cruisers (CG or CGN 16–39).
*The last two ships of the four-ship Virginia class were laid down as DLGNs but commissioned after 30 June 1975 as CGNs.