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USS Stag (AW-1) circa August 1944
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Class: STAG (AW-1)
Design: MC Z-ET1-S-C3
Displacement (tons): 4,113 light, 14,600 lim.
Dimensions (feet): 441.5' oa, 416.0' wl x 56.9' e x 28.3' lim.
Original Armament: 1-5"/38 1-3"/50 8-20mm
Later armaments: 1-5"/38 1-3"/50 12-20mm (1944)
Speed (kts.): 12.5
Propulsion (HP): 2,500
Machinery: Vert. 3-exp., 1 screw
||16 Feb 44
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||1 Jul 70
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||31 Jan 68
FY 1944. On 28 March 1935 CNO's War Plans office wrote to the Bureaus of Construction and Repair, Engineering, and Yards and Docks that it was necessary to there be provided on the West Coast and ready to sail by M+10 either tank ships with a capacity of 10,000,000 gallons (3-5 ships) or distilling ships with a daily capacity of 200,000 gallons (1 ship). The letter noted that no distilling ships were then in existence and that oilers could not have their tanks prepared for fresh water in less than 30 days by present methods. The war planners asked the Bureaus to collaborate on a workable plan to meet this requirement. BuC&R began work in early 1937 on one potential approach, converting existing tankers to distilling ships (XAW), and on 14 Jan 38 it distributed to other bureaus for comment conversion plans for the tanker GULFPENN ID-4668, built in 1921 as AGWIHAVRE). The Bureau then distributed on 2 Sep 38 plans for conversion a brand new tanker built in 1938, ESSO BATON ROUGE (ID-4992C) and her sisters. Work was also begun on plans for converted water tankers (XAWK), oilers that would transport potable water in their cargo tanks, but all three projects were suspended in late 1938.
By October 1943 the Pacific Fleet had developed an urgent need for floating fuel storage at advanced bases. On 12 Oct 43 the Auxiliary Vessels Board reported that it had learned that there were available to the Navy a number of new Liberty tankers (tanker variants of the emergency construction cargo ship) as well as certain old merchant tankers that could be used to help meet this requirement. It recommended acquiring 20 of the Liberty tankers as IX 111-130 and 15 of the old ships as IX 131-145. Since they would be doing very little cruising after arrival on station, none of the ships was to receive conversion features of any kind, and the old ships were to receive only the most necessary repairs. On 28 Jan 44 CNO ordered that this assignment be cancelled for two of the Liberty ships and that they be converted for use as Distilling Ships (AW). Their conversion was to include facilities for a full Navy crew, an armament similar to that installed on Navy Liberty-type cargo ships, and three distilling units each capable of producing 40,000 gallons of fresh water. The Auxiliary Vessels Board on 3 Jul 44 recommended that two more old tankers be acquired as IX 178-179 to replace the two diverted Liberties.
||Ex merc. NORMAN O. PEDRICK. Ex IX-128 4 Feb 44. Ferry commission 17 Feb 44-1 Mar 44. Converted by Tampa SB Co., Tampa, Fla. Merc. NORMAN O. PEDRICK 1946 (MC). To buyer 10 Jul 70, scrapped by 12 Dec 70.
||Ex merc. LEON GODCHAUX. Ex IX-130 4 Feb 44. Ferry commission 17 Feb 44-10 Apr 44. Converted by the Naval Operating Base, Key West, Fla. after drydocking at Tampa. Supported the Bikini atom bomb tests in July 1946. Merc. LEON GODCHAUX 1947 (MC). Repaired while inactive under the Emergency Ship Repair Program 27 Jun 55-18 Aug 55. To buyer 19 Feb 68.
Compiled: 26 Oct 2008
© Stephen S. Roberts, 2002-2008