Hammondsport AKV-2

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This Month in Naval History
Hammondsport AKV-2

Hammondsport

A village in New York.

(AKV-2: dp. 4,000(i.); 1. 478'; b. 63'6"; dr. 22'10"; s. 16
k.; cpl. 255; a. 1 5", 4 3"; cl. Kitty Hawk)

Hammondsport (AKV-2) was built as Seatrain Havana in 1932 by Sun Shipbuliding & Dry Dock Co., Chester, PA. After operating for Seatrain Lines, Inc. until 1941 she was acquired by the Navy through the Maritime Commission on a bare boat basis and commissioned at New York Navy Yard as Hammondsport (APV-2) 11 December 1941, Comdr. P. R. Glutting in command. She was reclassed AKV-2 on 15 September 1943.

Designed to carry cargo and aircraft, Hammondsport got underway 18 December 1941 for Chesapeake Bay, VA., and a short shakedown cruise. She continued to the Canal Zone, where she arrived 26 December and unloaded five PT boats transported from New York. Hammondsport arrived San Francisco 7 January 1942, and began loading cargo and aircraft to be carried to beleaguered allied forces in the western Pacific. Departing 15 January she ,steamed into Brisbane harbor with her precious cargo 5 February 1342. After unloading her cargo of 120 P-40 aircraft the ship sailed for San Francisco, arriving 17 March

From March until August Hammondsport made four voyages from California to Pearl Harbor with general cargo and aircraft for further transfer to the forward areas. Departing from San Diego 1 September 1992, the ship then sailed into the western Pacific area, carrying cargo and aircraft to Noumea, Espiritu Santo, and Efate, New Hebrides Islands before returning to San Diego 3 November 1942.

Hammondsport carried out this vital supply duty for the remainder of the war. She carried not only replacement aircraft for the far-ranging fleet groups of the 3d and 5th fleets, but land-based aircraft as well. In addition, she brought to such staging bases as Espiritu Santo and Noumea spare parts and other vital cargo and carried damaged aircraft back to Pearl Harbor and California bases. As the allied armies and navies advanced toward Japan, her destinations moved northward and westward. After the fall of the Marianas, Hammondsport's most frequent supply point was Guam, to which she carried hundreds of aircraft during 1945.

With the surrender of Japan Hammondsport continued to sail regularly ;between San Francisco, Pearl Harbor, and the Pacific islands, bringing aircraft and supplies back from Samar, Philippine Island, and the Marianas during September-November 1945. The ship departed Eniwetok atoll 21 December 1945 on her final passage, carrying 44 aircraft and 600 tons of cargo to Pearl Harbor and San Francisco. After touching at the latter port Hammondsport through the Panama Canal to Philadelphia, where she arrived 9 February 1946. There she decommissioned 7 March 1946 and was returned to the Maritime Commission. After a short period under charter to United Fruit Co., the ship was resold to Seatrain Lines 10 May 1946 and resumed merchant service as Seatrain Havana.

 

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