SHIP STAMP SOCIETY

SHIP STAMP SOCIETY

Interested in Ships and Stamps? The Ship Stamp Society is an international society and publishes it’s journal, Log Book, six time a year. Full membership includes receiving Log Book by post, but there is an online membership costing just £12pa.
Full details can be found on our web site at http://www.shipstampsociety.com where you can also join and pay your chosen subscription through Paypal or by cheque.
A free sample of Log Book is available on request.

MARQUETTE

New Zealand’s first hospital chapel was built in 1927-28 in the grounds of Christchurch Hospital to commemorate the sinking of the troopship MARQUETTE. This stamp shows part of a stained-glass window within the chapel depicting a First World War nurse above the ship. Beside her a Second World War nurse is shown above the pyramids of Egypt.
This window was designed to commemorate the contribution and sacrifice of nurses who served in the First and Second World Wars. It includes references to nurses in uniforms of the times and seven nursing medals. The WWI nurses are seen with a representation of the MARQUETTE in the Aegean while the WWII nurses are depicted in Egypt and the Middle East with association to the pyramids.
MARQUTTE: Built as a passenger-cargo vessel under yard No 373 by A. Stephen& Sons at Linthouse near Glasgow for Wilson & Furness, London.
25 November 1897 launched as the BOADICEA.
Tonnage 7,057 gross, 4,441 net, dim. 149.96 x 15.91 x 9.54m., length bpp. 148.3.
Powered by one 3-cyl.triple expansion steam engine, manufactured by builder, 770 nhp, speed 14 knots.
Bunker coal capacity 1,100 tons.
Accommodation for 120 passenger’s first class.
January 1898 completed.
15 January 1898 made her maiden voyage from Glasgow to New York, then back to London.
18 February 1898 first voyage from London to New York. 7 July 1898 made her last voyage for the company in this service.
1898 Bought by Atlantic Transport Line, and in the service between London across the North Atlantic to New York.
11 August 1898 her first voyage for her new owners still under the name BOADICEA for one round voyage before renamed MARQUETTE on 15 September 1898.
February 1901 she lost two blades of her screw, but was able to reach her destination with only two blades.
May 1903 in the English Channel during fog she came in collision with the PREUSSEN, and had to call Southampton for repair.
24 March 1904 last voyage London to New York.
Chartered September 1905 by the Red Star Line for the service between Antwerp and Philadelphia, her accommodation downgraded to second class.
August 1914 made her last voyage for the Red Star Line from Antwerp to Boston and Philadelphia.
03 September 1914 resumed London to New York service for the Atlantic Transport Line.
30 December 1914 made her last voyage in this service.
Was then chartered as a transport by the British Government.
19 October 1915 sailed from Alexandria bound for Salonika under command of Captain John Bell Findlay with on board 95 crew, 6 Egyptians, 36 New Zealand nurses’ 12 officers and 143 other ranks of the No 1 Stationary Hospital and the Ammunition Column of the British 29th Division of 449 men. There were also 491 mules and 50 horses on board and ammunition.
The Marquette was escorted by the French destroyer TIRAILLEUR, but she left just before the attack.
23 October she was sighted by the German U-35 under command of Lt. Cdr. Waldemar Kophamel in a position 36 miles South of Salonika. The MARQUETTE with a speed of 9 knots was torpedoed on 09.15 a.m. and sank after 13 minutes after the torpedo struck, killing 29 crew, 10 nurses and 128 troops.
A naval Court of Enquiry was held on the protected cruiser HMS TALBOT in Salonica Harbour on 26 October. The report, dated 3 November, found that no-one was at fault.

More on the sinking you can find on the URL’s below.
http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~nzlsc ... quette.htm http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/cgi-bi ... 160104.2.6 http://www.cnmc.org.nz/chapelwindhttp:/ ... ette_(1897)ows.htm

New Zealand 2015 80c Sg?, scott?
Source: Wikipedia. Dictionary of Disasters at Sea during the age of Steam 1824-1962. North Atlantic Seaway by N.R.P. Bonsor. Merchant Fleets in profile volume 2 by Duncan Haws. Internet.

Emmons USS (DD-457, Gleaves Class Destroyer) 1941

USS Emmons (DD-457/DMS-22) was a Gleaves-class destroyer of the United States Navy, named for Rear Admiral George F. Emmons (1811–1884). She took part in WW-II in the Atlantic, Mediterranean and Pacific wars, sank by a massive Kamikaze attack.

In the June 2006 issue of the USNI’s Naval History there is an article called ‘To Honour Our Navy at Normandy’. The first page of the article shows a painting entitled The Battle for Fox Green, D-Day Normandy by Dwight C. Shepler. The scene shows USS Emmons (DD 457) using her five-inch guns to shell targets at the eastern end of Omaha Beach, and is the design used for the stamp issues.

Emmons was launched 23 August 1941 by Bath Iron Works Corp., Bath, Me., sponsored by Mrs. F. E. Reacock, granddaughter of Rear Admiral Emmons; and commissioned 5 December 1941, Lieutenant Commander T. C. Ragan in command. She was reclassified DMS-22 on 15 November 1944.

Emmons sailed from Norfolk 31 January 1942 on her shakedown to Callao, Peru, where she embarked Peruvian officers for Valparaiso, Chile, returning to Boston via several ports in Ecuador. She patrolled in New England waters, and in April escorted Ranger (CV-4) across the Atlantic to the Gold Coast, where the carrier launched Army fighter planes, brought for the base at Accra and other African air bases.

The summer of 1942 found Emmons patrolling out of NS Argentia, Newfoundland, and escorting troopships from Boston to Halifax. At Halifax on 5 July she joined an Army transport and a merchantman, whom she shepherded to a midocean rendezvous with a British escort unit to take them safely into Iceland. Emmons sailed on to join the British Home Fleet in Scapa Flow on 16 July. She underwent training necessary to coordinate American and British procedures and tactics. Between 26 and 31 July, she escorted the battleship HMS Duke of York to Iceland and back to Scapa Flow, then had convoy escort duty on the Scottish coast. On 17 August she cleared Scapa Flow for Iceland where she made rendezvous with a convoy bound through the treacherous northern shipping lanes to Kola Inlet in the Soviet Union, from which she returned to Greenock, 30 August.

Emmons returned to New York 9 September 1942 and trained in Casco and Chesapeake Bays, and at Bermuda, for the invasion of north Africa, for which she sailed from Bermuda 26 October. She screened carriers covering landings at Safi between 8 and 13 November, returning by way of Bermuda and Norfolk to Boston. After brief overhaul and coastwise escort duty, she went to Cristobal to await a convoy to New York. Meanwhile she passed through the Panama Canal 9 January 1943 to train briefly with officers of the Ecuadoran Navy. She guarded the passage of a convoy to north Africa in February returning to New York 11 March for training. On 2 April Emmons put to sea via Argentia for Scapa Flow, where she joined the British Home Fleet again 19 May.

During the next 2½ months, Emmons joined in patrolling northern waters, guarding the movement of convoys across the North Atlantic, unceasingly alerted against the possible sortie of German ships from Norwegian bases. She also guarded British carriers in air attacks on Norway in July. Returning to Norfolk 9 August 1943, she voyaged to Gibraltar between 3 November and 19 December in the advance scouting line guarding Iowa (BB-61), carrying President Franklin D. Roosevelt to the Teheran Conference.

Between December 1943 and April 1944, Emmons guarded carriers during their operations at Newport and in Casco Bay, aiding in the training of aviators. On 20 April she sailed from Maine waters for the Azores, and Mers-el-Kebir, Algeria, arriving 1 May for antisubmarine patrols. On 17 May, her group teamed with British aircraft to sink the German submarine U-616, and the next day, Emmons sailed for England, and final preparations for the invasion of France, 6 June. After guarding preassault minesweeping, she joined in the heavy bombardment prior to the landing. She remained off the beachhead for three days as watchdog for the vast armada of ships lining up with men and supplies, then retired across the English Channel to Plymouth, England, screening Texas (BB-35). Returning to the assault area 11 June, Emmons served in the screen guarding transports and supply ships from submarine attack. After replenishing at Portland, England, from 21 to 24 June, she kept watch around battleships and cruisers on 25 June in the Task Force 129 Bombardment of Cherbourg supporting the U.S. First Army VII Corps victory at the Battle of Cherbourg.

Emmons returned to Mers-el-Kebir 10 July 1944 with a transport convoy she had brought across from Portland, then had escort duty in the Mediterranean ports preparing for the assault on southern France. She sailed from Taranto, Italy, for the beachheads, 11 August, and on the 15th began preinvasion bombardment. She remained off the beaches all day to provide fire support to troops storming ashore. Escort duty took her away to Italian and Corsican ports, but she returned to patrol off the French Riviera until October.

Emmons put into Boston 9 November 1944 for conversion to a high-speed minesweeper, and after Atlantic training and exercises in the Hawaiian Islands, entered Ulithi to stage for the invasion of Okinawa. Her squadron put to sea 19 March 1945 for the dangerous, vital task of clearing Okinawa's waters from mines to let assault ships close the beaches for the landings on 1 April. She then took up picket duty, and on 6 April, during one of the first of the massive kamikaze attacks, was a target as she sailed with Rodman (DMS-21). One of the first planes to attack struck Rodman, and as Emmons circled the stricken ship to provide antiaircraft cover, both DMSs were overwhelmed by suicide-bent Japanese planes. Many were shot down, but Emmons was struck by five, almost simultaneously. One hit her fantail, the rest to starboard of her pilot house, of No. 3 gun mount on her waterline, aft, and the port side of her combat information center. Crippled and ablaze, with ammunition exploding wholesale, Emmons found damage control a desperate, losing struggle. That day her crew, who had already won the Navy Unit Commendation for Okinawa, lost 60 dead, 77 wounded. The rest had to abandon ship. Next day, the 7th, the hulk was sunk to prevent its falling into enemy hands.

In addition to her Navy Unit Commendation, Emmons received four battle stars for World War II service.

The Emmons made national headlines in September, 2010 when it was revealed the shipwreck had been vandalized by divers. The ship's plaque, or data plate, has been removed without permission of the U.S. Navy, which still maintains custody of the wreck. To many veterans this act is akin to robbing a grave. As one said, "that ship is a resting place (for sixty men). Those men deserve our respect". The Emmons lies in 147 feet of water off Okinawa's Kouri Island. It has become a popular dive site since its rediscovery in February, 2001.

On 7 April 2011, the plaque was recovered by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service and is the hands of proper authorities. The US Navy will determine how the plaque will be displayed.

Somalia 2004, S.G.?, Scott: ?

Source: Wikipedia.

LANDING ANZAC COVE 25 April 1915

“Landing at Anzac Cove”, which shows the landing in Anzac Cove on 25 April 1915, at the end 12,000 New Zealanders would arrive there.
In the foreground you can see a landings-boat, while in the background most probably are some troop transports, the image is too unclear to make out what it exactly is even the photo I found on the net is too unclear. By the photo where not ships names, only that the photo was taken on 25 April and shows that New Zealand and Australian troops landed.

MAHENO hospital ship

In 1915 New Zealand’s role in the First World War reached a new level. In near-impossible conditions the New Zealand Expeditionary Force took part in the Gallipoli campaign alongside our Australian neighbours. The Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (ANZAC) was formed and the spirits of Anzac lives on today.
First observed in 1916 and commemorated as an official day of remembrance, Anzac Day commemorates the landing of the troops at Anzac Cove on 25 April 1915. 100 years on a new generation reflects on the events that occurred at Gallipoli, and remembers all New Zealanders who have served their country during times of conflict and peace.
The intention of the Gallipoli campaign was to open the Dardanelles strait to the Allied fleets, giving them access to the Ottoman capital of Constantinople to possibly force a Turkish surrender. After nine months of conflict, the ultimately unsuccessful campaign came to an end and the peninsula remained in its defenders hands.
The effects the Gallipoli campaign had on New Zealand and Australia were devastating. More than 8,700 Australians and more that 2,700 New Zealanders lost their lives fighting for King and Empire in this ambitious campaign. It was through this hardship that Anzac spirit was born a comradeship felt and remembered to this day with the annual observance of Anzac Day – 25 April.
Three stamps in this set are maritime related, the 80 c “landing at Anzac Cove”, which shows the landing in Anzac Cove on 25 April 1915, at the end 12,000 New Zealanders would arrive there.
In the foreground you can see a landings-boat, while in the background most probably are some troop transports, the image is too unclear to make out what it exactly is even the photo I found on the net is too unclear. By the photo where not ships names, only that the photo was taken on 25 April and shows that New Zealand and Australian troops landed.
The other 80c stamp depict a stained glass window in the nurse’s memorial chapel in the grounds of Christchurch Hospital to commemorate the sinking of the troopship MARQUETTE. The stamp shows part of the stained glass with on the left a nurse from World War I and below her feet is the MARQUETTE depict. On the right is a nurse depict of World War II above the pyramids of Egypt.
The $2.50 shows use the New Zealand hospital ship MAHENO.
The New Zealand post gives by the stamp: When the Gallipoli campaign was being planned, few foresaw the need to provide hospital ships for the treatment and evacuation of the wounded. In July 1915, as causalities mounted, the MAHENO left Wellington for Egypt, with a matron, 13 nursing sisters, five medical officers and 61 orderlies among the personnel on board.

MAHENO was built as a passenger-cargo vessel under yard No 746 by Wm. Denny & Bros at Dumbarton, Scotland for the Union Company, Dunedin, New Zealand.
19 June 1905 launched as the MAHENO, named after a small north Otago township in the Southern Island of New Zealand.
Tonnage 5,282 gross, 3,318net, dim 122.04 x 15.2 x 9.4m.
Powered by three Parsons steam turbines 600 nhp, three shafts, speed 17.5 knots.
Passenger accommodation for 231 first class, 120 second and 67 3rd class passengers.
Cargo capacity 3,908 cubic metres.
Crew 113.
15 September 1905 Trials.
29 September 1905 delivered to owners. Building cost £141,967.
She sailed the same day from Glasgow with on board over 200 passengers bound for Australia and New Zealand, she sailed around the Cape of Good Hope and in Durban a further 170 passengers boarded there when she made a call for bunkers.
Her centre propeller was damaged during the voyage from Durban to Melbourne which reduced her speed.
08 November she arrived at Melbourne and after a stay of three days she proceeded to Sydney.
18 November she sailed from Sydney for her maiden voyage service where she was for designed the horseshoe service between Australia and New Zealand.
After a view voyages in the service she was in April 1906 transferred temporarily to the Vancouver service.
03 April she was fitted out for the first Pacific crossing in Sydney, sailed Sydney on the 16th and via Brisbane and Suva arriving in Vancouver on 07 May. Her return voyage was with calling the same ports. Then she made one other voyage to Vancouver and was back in Sydney on 08 September.
After arrival she was put again in the trans-Tasman service till the outbreak of World War I.
She was an enormous expensive ship by consuming lots of bunker coal, and in 1914 she was taken out of service and in Port Chalmers she was converted to a twin screw and two geared turbines, the middle shaft and propeller were removed.
September 1914 again in the horseshoe service. Her speed was slightly reduced but coal consumption had greatly reduced.
1915 Was she requisitioned by the New Zealand Government for conversion as a hospital ship. The work was done by Union Line staff in Port Chalmers.
25 May 1915 commissioned as a hospital ship for 515 patients.
10 July 1915 she sailed from Wellington bound for Egypt and the U.K. and returning with wounded soldiers. Al together she made nine voyages between New Zealand and U.K and Egypt from July 1915 till April 1919 only between Augusts to October 1916 she was used between France and England in the cross-channel service.
She carried in that time around 16,000 wounded men from the battlefield to safety in England.
26 April 1919 she had made her last voyage as hospital ship when she arrived in Dunedin, New Zealand.
She was refitted in Port Chalmers again for the service across the Tasman by the Union Line staff.
01 July 1917 the Union Steam Ship Company was taken over by the Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Company (P&O).
1921 She was placed in the direct service from Sydney to Auckland.
1923 Her homeport became Wellington.
December 1929 in the service from Wellington, Lyttelton, Dunedin and Bluff to Hobart and Melbourne. This route was operated during the summer months, while the rest of the year she was placed in other routes when needed.
Early 1935 out of service and laid up in Sydney.
Bought by Miyachi Kaisen KK, Osaka, Japan and her propellers were removed. Towed by the OONAH another ship bought by the same company, she left on 3 July 1935 the harbour of Sydney.
Five days later the two ships met stormy weather and the towline broke, the MAHENO drifted helpless with wind and current who drove her to Queensland coast and she grounded on the coast of Fraser Island.
The eight Japanese crew on board managed the next day to go ashore. A tug send out to look for her could not reach her due to the sea and weather.
Very quickly a wall of sand was built up on the seaward side of the wreck, and by inspection it was found that her back was broken and she was abandoned.
During World War II the wrack was used by the RAAF for target practice.
Till today some rusted remains of the ship can been found on Fraser Island.
More info is given on:
http://theesotericcuriosa.blogspot.co.n ... -made.html

New Zealand 2015 $2.50 sg?, scott? (the stamp is included in two mint sheets issued by the New Zealand Post.)

Source: Internet. New Zealand Post info leaflet. Passenger ships of Australia & New Zealand by Peter Plowman.

Ra II (Thor Heyerdahl’s Reed Boat) 1970

Heyerdahl (1914 – 2002) was a Norwegian adventurer and ethnographer with a background in zoology, botany, and geography. Thor Heyerdahl has long been interested in the history of early seafaring and has advocated that the oceans, far from being obstacles, could and can be safely crossed on relatively simple watercraft by following the natural conveyances of the winds and currents.

See Topic: “Thor Heyerdahl”

He became notable for his balsa raft (Kon-Tiki) expedition in 1947, in which he sailed 8,000 km (5,000 mi) across the Pacific Ocean in a hand-built balsa raft from South America to the Tuamotu Islands. The expedition was designed to demonstrate that ancient people could have made long sea voyages, creating contacts between separate cultures. This was linked to a diffusionist model of cultural development. Heyerdahl subsequently made other voyages designed to demonstrate the possibility of contact between widely separated ancient people.

See Topic: “Kon Tiki”

In 1969 and 1970, Heyerdahl built two boats from papyrus and attempted to cross the Atlantic Ocean from Morocco in Africa. Based on drawings and models from ancient Egypt, the first boat, named Ra (after the Egyptian Sun god), was constructed by boat builders from Lake Chad using papyrus reed obtained from Lake Tana in Ethiopia and launched into the Atlantic Ocean from the coast of Morocco. The Ra crew included Thor Heyerdahl (Norway), Norman Baker (USA), Carlo Mauri (Italy), Yuri Senkevich (USSR), Santiago Genoves (Mexico), Georges Sourial (Egypt) and Abdullah Djibrine (Chad). Only Heyerdahl and Baker had sailing and navigation experiences. After a number of weeks, Ra took on water after its crew made modifications to the vessel that caused it to sag and break apart after sailing more than 6440 km (4000 miles). The crew was forced to abandon Ra some hundred miles before Caribbean islands and was saved by a yacht.

See Topic: “Reed Boat”

The following year, 1970, another similar vessel, Ra II (depicted on the stamps), was built of papyrus by Demetrio, Juan and Jose Limachi from Lake Titicaca in Bolivia and likewise set sail across the Atlantic from Morocco, this time with great success. The crew was mostly the same; only Djibrine had been replaced by Kei Ohara from Japan and Madani Ait Ouhanni from Morocco. The boat reached Barbados, thus demonstrating that mariners could have dealt with trans-Atlantic voyages by sailing with the Canary Current. Also in terms of survivability, the reed boat is equal, if not better, to most any boat used by Europeans during the early centuries of exploration. The Ra II is now in the Kon-Tiki Museum in Oslo, Norway.

The book The Ra Expeditions and the film documentary Ra (1972) were made about the voyages. Apart from the primary aspects of the expedition, Heyerdahl deliberately selected a crew representing a great diversity in race, nationality, religion and political viewpoint in order to demonstrate that at least on their own little floating island, people could cooperate and live peacefully. Additionally, the expedition took samples of marine pollution and presented their report to the United Nations.

Barbados 1979, S.G.?, Scott: 489.

Norway 2004, Inland Mail.

Source: Wikipedia

MOSAIC OF SAN MARCO IN VENICE

This stamp issued of L25 by the Vatican in 1972, shows us a Venetian merchant ship from around 800 in which the body of the apostle St Mark is transported from Alexandria to Venice. Have not any info on the depicted vessel but below is given the voyage from Alexandria to Venice what I did find on the internet. The stamp is designed after a mosaic in the basilica of San Marco in Venice.
The two L1.50 stamps shows us an early map of Venice, with some ships types of that time frame, while the L180 stamp depict the Basilica of San Marco in Venice.
The Myth of St. Mark
The myth that is frequently referenced to in the decoration of the Basilica of San Marco is the finding of St. Mark’s body and the continued reaffirmation of his relationship to Venice. The relics of St. Mark are documented as arriving in Venice in 828. The narrative of the myth is told in the Translatio, a document that has an unclear development but dates to 1050 and introduced the story of how St. Mark came to Venice. The Translatio also proclaimed the divine right of Venetians to hold Mark’s relics. The myth begins with two Venetian merchants, Tribunus and Rusticus, who removed the body of St. Mark from the saints tomb in Alexandria.
Two Alexandrian monks Stauracius and Theodorus were acting as custodians to the relic. The story continues, in a manner to justify the commercial connection between Venetian Christians and Muslims in Alexandria, that the ship of Tribunus and Rusticus had been blown off their original course causing them to land in Alexandria. This is incongruous to the Venetian mentality of the 11th century that did not seem to mind who they traded with as long as the Venetian state benefitted in the end. The merchants discovered that the Khalif of Alexandria was planning on destroying the relics and the church the relics were housed in. Tribunus and Rusticus then persuaded the monks to allow them to take the relics thereby saving them. The monks and the merchants swapped Mark’s body with that of St. Claudia.
Then they hid St. Mark’s body in a container on board their ship and placed pork on top of the container to stop Muslim Guards from finding the stolen relic. During the journey back to Venice the merchants experienced miracles. These miracles took the form of a quick return home, the saving of a sceptic in the city of Umago in Istria from a demon and St. Mark saving the merchant’s ship from wrecking during a storm. Another alleged miracle occurred when St. Mark’s body was received in Venice. While the body of the saint was being brought to the palace of the Doge, Justinian Partecipacius, the relic became to heavy for the clergy members to carry whereupon the Doge promised to build a church for them, which would eventually become San Marco.

Vatican 1972 L25 sg ?, scott?
http://venice11.umwblogs.org/the-myth-of-st-mark/
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UNIMAK USS seaplane tender

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UNIMAK USS seaplane tender

Postby aukepalmhof » Sun Sep 13, 2009 8:54 pm

tmp144.jpg
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Built as a seaplane tender by Associated Shipbuilders Inc.,Harbor Island, Seattle, Washington for the USA Navy.
15 February 1942 laid down.
27 May 1942 launched as the USS UNIMAK (AVP-31), sponsored by Mrs. H.B. Berry the wife of Captain H.B.Berry, the personnel officer of the 13th Naval District. Named after the Unimak Bay on the southern side of Unimak Island, Alaska. She was one of the Barnegat class.
Displacement 1.766 tons light, 2.592 tons full load. Dim. 94.7 x 12.5 x 4.1m. (draught).
Powered by two Fairbanks-Morse diesels, 6.080 bhp, twin shafts, speed 18 knots.
Armament 1 – 5 inch, 4 – 40mm AA, 8 – 20mm AA guns, 2 – depth charge tracks and 2 Mousetrap depth charge projectors.
Crew 215 without aviation unit.
31 December 1943 commissioned under command of Commander Hilfort C. Owen.

She carried supplies, spare parts, repairs and berthing for some seaplanes squadron. Aviation bunkers 302.833 liters.
Following shakedown and fitting-out into late January 1944, the small seaplane tender departed San Diego, Calif., on 20 March, bound for the Canal Zone. Arriving at Balboa eight days later, the seaplane tender operated on the Pacific coast of Central America into April, providing logistics support to advanced seaplane bases at Santa Elena Bay, Ecuador, and at Aeolian Bay, Battra Island, in the Galapagos group. She soon shifted to Coco Solo on the Caribbean side of the Canal and transported men and materiel to Barranquilla’s Colombia, arriving there on 25 April.
After escorting SS GENEVIEVE LYKES back to Coco Solo on 23 and 24 June, UNIMAK conducted routine exercises with patrol planes into July. On 4 July, she received reports that a tanker near her position had been torpedoed and headed for the damaged ship. When she arrived on the scene late that day, she found the tanker still underway, making for the Panama coast. She immediately commenced screening the disabled ship and, aided by an escort of Army and Navy planes, shepherded the tanker safely to Colon late on the following afternoon.
Soon thereafter, UNIMAK shaped her course towards the last reported position of Navy blimp K-58. At 1532 on 9 July the seaplane tender sighted two yellow rubber rafts and the wreckage of the crashed blimp floating on the water. At 1558, UNIMAK took on board nine survivors and sank the unsalvageable blimp by collapsing the bag with 40-millimeter gunfire; the ship then landed the survivors at Portland Bight, Jamaica.
A few days later, on 12 July, UNIMAK joined with JOHN D. EDWARDS (DD-216) in hunting for a submarine reported to be lurking nearby. Within a few days, word of a crashed plane sent the two ships speeding for the last reported position of an aircraft. UNIMAK located only wreckage and one body and buried it at sea on 16 July.
UNIMAK remained in the Caribbean through the autumn, tending patrol planes, conducting logistics support missions for advanced seaplane bases, and occasionally towing targets for the patrol planes training in the area. On 15 December, ROCKAWAY (AVP-29) relieved UNIMAK, releasing her to steam north via Norfolk to Boston, Mass.
Arriving there at the end of December 1944, UNIMAK underwent availability at the Boston Navy Yard for the entire month of January 1945. She got underway for England on 14 February, but an engineering casualty forced the ship to return to Boston for a major propeller shaft alignment which lasted into March.
On 7 April, UNIMAK got underway for the British Isles and proceeded, via Bahia Praia in the Azores, to Bristol, on the first of two voyages to England to bring back supplies and men from decommissioned Navy patrol plane squadrons in the British Isles. On the second voyage, from 5 to 15 June, UNIMAK transported the men and materiel of Patrol Bomber Squadrons 103 and 105 from Bristol to Norfolk.
Departing Hampton Roads on 20 July, bound for the west coast, the ship transited the Panama Canal on the 26th and arrived at San Diego on 3 August. She got underway for Pearl Harbor on the 12th. The seaplane tender subsequently operated in the Hawaiian chain until 7 September when she headed for the Aleutians.
She operated in northern climes (calling at Adak, Kodiak, and Attu, Alaska; and once at Petropavlovsk Siberia) into November of 1945 before heading southward to prepare for inactivation. Subsequently reporting to Commander, 19th Fleet, in December, UNIMAK was decommissioned on 26 July 1946. She remained in reserve until transferred to the Coast Guard on 14 September 1948.
She served the Coast Guard as UNIMAK (WAVP-379).
The UNIMAK was home ported in Boston from 3 January 1949 to 1 September 1956 and used primarily for law enforcement, ocean station, and search and rescue operations. In June 1956, she patrolled the Newport, RI to Bermuda race. She was subsequently stationed at Cape May, NJ from 1 September 1956 to 7 August 1972 and used primarily for training reservists, including training cruises to Brazil and Nova Scotia. She took part in the cadet cruise of August 1965. On 7 March 1967 she rescued six Cuban refugees in the Yucatan Channel. On 10 March 1967 she rescued survivors from F/V BUNKIE III in Florida waters. Five days later, she rescued 12 Cuban refugees who were stranded on an island. On 29 May 1969, UNIMAK towed the disabled F/V SIROCCO 35 miles east of Fort Pierce, FL, to safety. On 3 April 1970, UNIMAK stood by the grounded M/V VASSILIKI near Mayaguana Island until a commercial tug arrived.
From 7 August 1972 to 31 May 1975, the UNIMAK was stationed at Yorktown, VA, and was again used to train reservists. Between 31 May 1975 and August 1977 she was placed out of commission and stored at Curtis Bay. MD. On 22 August 1977, UNIMAK was reactivated and was home ported at New Bedford, MA, until 1988. She was used primarily for fishing patrol.
On 6 October 1980, she seized M/V JANETH 340 miles southeast of Miami, FL, carrying 500 bales of marijuana. On 14 October 1980, she seized P/C RESCUE carrying approximately 500 bales of marijuana and P/C SNAIL with two tons of marijuana in the Gulf of Mexico. Three days later, she seized M/V AMALAKA southwest of Key West, FL, carrying 1,000 bales of marijuana. On 19 October 1980, UNIMAK seized F/V WRIGHT’S PRIDE southwest of Key West, carrying 30 tons of marijuana. In March of 1981, while on an OCS training cruise, UNIMAK intercepted M/V MAYO with 40 tons of marijuana. On 9 December 1982, she towed the disabled F/V SACRED HEART away from Daid Banks, 45 miles east of Cape Cod, in 30-foot seas.
Between 28 January and 9 March 1983, the UNIMAK was again deployed to the Caribbean for law enforcement patrol. On 27 and 28 February 1983, she towed the dismasted WANDERING STAR to Mathew Town, Great Iguana. On 3 March 1983, she towed the disabled M/V YADRINA to Mathew Town. On 30 November 1984, UNIMAK seized the sailboat LOLA 100 miles north of Barranquilla, Colombia, carrying 1.5 tons of marijuana. Another drug bust occurred on 2 November 1985, when the UNIMAK seized tugboat ZEUS 3 and a barge 200 miles south of the Dominican Republic carrying 40 tons of marijuana.
After her return to the Navy in April of 1988, she was expended as an artificial reef off the Virginia coast.
Tuvalu 1990 30c sg579, scott544.
Dictionary of American Fighting Ships. USA Coastguard web-site. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Unimak_(AVP-31)
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