Quick Links Menu.



USS Tolovana (AO-64) circa February 1945
Click on this photograph for links to larger images of this class.

Class:        ASHTABULA (AO-51)
Design        MC T3-S2-A1
Displacement (tons):        7,236 light, 25,400 lim.
Dimensions (feet):        553.0' oa, 525.0' wl x 75.0' e x 32.3' lim.
Original Armament:        1-5"/38 4-3"/50 2-1.1Q 12-20 (AO 51-62)
Later armaments:        
Phase 2 (1944-45):
1-5"/38 4-3"/50
4-40mmT 8-20mm (1944-45: AO-51, 53, 55, 56, 62, 64); 1- 5"/38 4-3"/50 2-40mmT 12-20mm (1945: AO-63).
Phase 3 (1946-52):
1-5"/38 4-3"/50
4-40mmT 4-20mmT (1946-52: AO 53, 54, 55, 56, 97-100); 1- 5"/38 4-3"/50 2-40mmQ 2-40mmT 4-20mmT (1947-49: AO 51, 52, 63, 64, 97, 99, 100, 105-109);
1-5"/38 4-20mmT (1949: AO-57, 58, 60, 61); 1-5"/38 3-40mmT 4-20mmT (1949: AO-54, 62); 1-5"/38 1-40mmQ 2-40mmT 4-20mmT (1949-51: AO-56, 63, 64);
Phase 4 (1952-57):
1-5"/38 4-3"/50
2-40mmQ 2-40mmT 4-20mmT (1952: AO-58); 1-5"/38 4-3"/50 2-40mmT 4-20mmT (1952: AO 60-61); 1-5"/38 4-3"/50 3-40mmT 4-20mmT (1952: AO-62); 1-5"/38 4-3"/50 2-40mmQ 2-40mmT 4>0-20mmT (1955: AO-53, 54, 57, 60, 61); 1-5"/38 4-3"/50 1-40mmQ 2-40mmT 4>0-20mmT (1955-57: AO-56, 63, 64).
Phase 5 (1958-80):
4-3"/50
(1958-61: AO 51-53, 55-58, 60-62, 64, 97-100); 2-3"/50 (1961-63: AO- 54, 63);
2-3"/50 (1980, AO-51, 98-99);
none (1972-73: AO-57, 62 in MSTS)
Complement        263 (1944)
Speed (kts.):        18.3
Propulsion (HP):        13,500
Machinery:        2 screws, Bethlehem turbines

Construction:
AO Name Acq. Builder Keel Launch Commiss.
51 ASHTABULA 7 Aug 43 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 1 Oct 42 22 May 43 7 Aug 43
52 CACAPON 21 Sep 43 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 16 Nov 42 12 Jun 43 21 Sep 43
53 CALIENTE 22 Oct 43 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 2 Jan 43 25 Aug 43 22 Oct 43
54 CHIKASKIA 10 Nov 43 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 3 Feb 43 2 Oct 43 10 Nov 43
55 ELOKOMIN 30 Nov 43 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 9 Mar 43 19 Oct 43 30 Nov 43
56 AUCILLA 22 Dec 43 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 25 May 43 20 Nov 43 22 Dec 43
57 MARIAS 12 Feb 44 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 15 Jun 43 21 Dec 43 12 Feb 44
58 MANATEE 6 Apr 44 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 28 Aug 43 18 Feb 44 6 Apr 44
59 MISSISSINEWA 18 May 44 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 5 Oct 43 28 Mar 44 18 May 44
60 NANTAHALA 19 Jun 44 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 31 Oct 43 29 Apr 44 19 Jun 44
61 SEVERN 19 Jul 44 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 24 Nov 43 31 May 44 19 Jul 44
62 TALUGA 25 Aug 44 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 23 Dec 43 10 Jul 44 25 Aug 44
63 CHIPOLA 30 Nov 44 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 3 May 44 21 Oct 44 30 Nov 44
64 TOLOVANA 24 Feb 45 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 5 Jun 44 6 Jan 45 24 Feb 45
97 ALLAGASH 21 Aug 45 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 26 Oct 44 14 Apr 45 21 Aug 45
98 CALOOSAHATCHEE 10 Oct 45 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 30 Nov 44 2 Jun 45 10 Oct 45
99 CANISTEO 3 Dec 45 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 11 Jan 45 6 Jul 45 3 Dec 45
100 CHUKAWAN 22 Jan 46 Bethlehem Sparrows Pt. 25 Jan 45 28 Aug 45 22 Jan 46

Disposition:
AO Name Decomm. Strike Disposal Fate MA Sale
51 ASHTABULA 30 Sep 82 6 Sep 91 15 Oct 00 Tgt. --
52 CACAPON 14 Aug 73 14 Aug 73 10 Dec 73 MA/S 10 Dec 73
53 CALIENTE 15 Dec 73 1 Dec 73 5 Apr 74 MA/S 5 Apr 74
54 CHIKASKIA 4 Sep 70 1 Dec 76 1 Jul 72 MA/R 26 May 82
55 ELOKOMIN 17 Mar 70 17 Mar 70 2 Nov 70 MA/S 2 Nov 70
56 AUCILLA 18 Dec 70 1 Dec 76 1 Jul 73 MA/R 18 May 92
57 MARIAS 1982 11 Dec 92 18 Sep 95 Sold --
58 MANATEE 14 Aug 73 14 Aug 73 10 Dec 73 MA/S 10 Dec 73
59 MISSISSINEWA -- 20 Jan 45 20 Nov 44 Lost --
60 NANTAHALA 2 Jul 73 1 Jul 73 5 Mar 75 MA/S 5 Mar 75
61 SEVERN 1 Jul 73 1 Jul 74 22 Jan 75 MA/S 22 Jan 75
62 TALUGA 1983 21 Feb 92 1 May 99 MA/T --
63 CHIPOLA 14 Aug 73 14 Aug 73 15 Jul 74 MA/S 15 Jul 74
64 TOLOVANA 15 Apr 75 15 Apr 75 16 Oct 75 MA/S 16 Oct 75
97 ALLAGASH 21 Dec 70 1 Jun 73 16 Mar 76 MA/S 16 Mar 76
98 CALOOSAHATCHEE 28 Feb 90 18 Jul 94 18 Dec 98 MA/T --
99 CANISTEO 2 Oct 89 31 Aug 92 18 Dec 98 MA/T --
100 CHUKAWAN 30 Jun 72 1 Jul 72 1 Mar 73 MA/S 1 Mar 73

Class Notes:
FY 1942 (AO 51-64), 1944 (others). In mid-December 1941 the Navy began developing a list of its total requirements in ships for a maximum war effort. On 12 Jan 42 the General Board submitted to SecNav a list of the additional ships of each type that would be required, including 12 high speed oilers (CIMARRONs). On 14 Mar 42 CNO promulgated to the Bureaus an updated "Maximum War Effort (Shipbuilding)" tabulation that included the 12 CIMARRONs plus two more for conversion to escort carriers, noting that it furnished a reasonably accurate list on which to base planning and material needs. The two tanker escort carrier conversions quickly disappeared but the oiler requirement soon increased to 3 CIMARRONs to be delivered in 1943, 8 in 1944, and 3 in 1945. Anticipating Navy requirements, the MC on 20 Mar 42 ordered under its Military Program 14 repeat CIMARRONs, a design it now designated T3-S2-A1, from the Bethlehem Steel Co. yard at Sparrows Point, Md. On 9 May 42 the Auxiliary Vessels Board recommended acquisition of these 14 oilers from the MC. At the same time the Board also approved the other auxiliaries listed in the Maximum War Effort program for delivery in 1943: nine tenders to be built on C3 hulls (AD 22-25, AV 14-17, and AS-23), two more C3-type tenders to be acquired (AR-12 and AS-22), and two ammunition ships to be built on C2 hulls (AE 8-9).

On 6 Jun 1944 the JCS asked the MC to modify its building program for the first half of 1945 to include the construction of 56 merchant type vessels as Naval auxiliaries including 12 oilers. On 14 Jun 44 the MC reassigned to the Navy six T2-SE-A2 tankers then under construction at Marinship for civilian use (AO 91-96), and on 15 Jun 44 it ordered under its Military Program four more fast oilers of the T3-S2-A1 type from Bethlehem Sparrows Point (AO 97-100). The MC informed the JCS on 22 Jun 44 that it was able to provide for all of the requested 56 ships except for two of the 12 oilers. On 3 Jul 44 the Auxiliary Vessels Board recommended acquiring the 54 ships including the 10 oilers.

"Jumbo" conversions: On 24 Feb 61 ComServLant submitted to CNO an analysis done jointly with ComServPac of the construction and conversion of fleet oilers that would be required in Fiscal Years 1963-1968. The study showed that the total fuel oil replenishment force could be maintained at 33 ships by jumboizing 9 AO-22 class ships and building new ships of the AO, AOR, and AOE types to offset the loss of the remaining AO-22 class ships, all of which would be phased out by 1972. The 9 jumboized tankers would have their tank sections replaced and would be thoroughly rehabilitated for extended service life. At the same time, BuShips in February 1961 contracted with the Maryland Shipbuilding and Drydock Co. to assist in developing plans for a jumboized AO-22 based on their extensive experience with jumboizing commercial tankers. By 15 Nov 61 both Navy and OSD plans called for 2 AO Jumbo conversions in FY 1963, three in FY 1964, and three in FY 1965.

The FY 1963 and 164 conversions were performed on the newest AO-22 type ships, AO 105-109 (q.v.). These conversions were pure tanker enlargements, in which the bow and stern were separated from the midbody and a new larger midbody was substituted. In these ships the steam replenishment winches were also replaced with electro-hydraulic ones with an auxiliary diesel generating plant to power them; removing the load of the winches from the steam propulsion plant increased the replenishment speed of the ships from 12-13 to 15-16 knots. But in late 1962 the Ships Characteristics Board asked BuShips to see if more could be accomplished with these conversions and if a one stop replenishment capability could be incorporated into the hull configuration of a jumboized AO-22. BuShips developed a design during the first half of 1963 that could carry some refrigerated and dry stores plus ammunition in addition to the usual fuel oil and jet and diesel fuel, thus making the ships into multi-product oilers. This design was used for the three FY 1965 ships. These, which like the AO-105 group measured 644' oa x 75' after conversion, differed in appearance from their predecessors because of their built-up hull sides and new amidships deckhouse. The contracts for the three conversions were awarded on 7 Apr 65 to Todd, San Pedro (AO-51) and Bethlehem Steel Co., Key Highway, Baltimore (AO 98-99).

Ship Notes:
AO Name MC Notes
51 ASHTABULA 717 Received "jumbo" conversion at Todd Shipyard, Long Beach. New mid-section begun by Todd 1 Apr 66 and launched 9 Jul 67. Old bow and stern attached to it in August and September 1967 respectively. Recomm. 19 Oct 68. To NDRF 22 Nov 82. Sold by Navy 25 Oct 95 and withdrawn from NDRF 7 Dec 95 but scrapping contract cancelled after scrapper defaulted due cost of removing asbestos. Partially dismantled hulk repossessed 27 Sep 99 and used as target 14-15 Oct 2000, sunk 15 Oct by demolition charges after taking hits from 13 missiles, 4 bombs, and gunfire.
52 CACAPON 718 To buyer 7 Jan 74.
53 CALIENTE 719 To buyer 29 Apr 74.
54 CHIKASKIA 720 To Naval Transportation Service effective 1 Jul 47. From NTS to MSTS as "Commissioned Naval Vessel" 1 Oct 49. From MSTS to ComServPac (regular Navy) 1 Mar 53. In USN reserve 1955-56 (decomm. 7 Nov 55, to MSTS 15 Nov 56, recomm. 12 Dec 56). Decomm. 6 Nov 57, to NDRF 9 Dec 57, to MA 10 Dec 58, stk. 1 Feb 59. From MA 12 Aug 60, on list 1 Sep 60 (regular Navy). To NDRF 4 Sep 70.
55 ELOKOMIN 721 To buyer 2 Mar 71.
56 AUCILLA 722 Ex USS ESCANABA 17 Apr 43. Reported to Naval Transportation Service 10 Mar 47. From NTS to MSTS as "Commissioned Naval Vessel" 1 Oct 49. From MSTS to ComServLant 29 Apr 51. To NDRF 7 Oct 71. Title to MA 26 Jun 91.
57 MARIAS 723 To Naval Transportation Service 5 Mar 47. From NTS to MSTS as "Commissioned Naval Vessel" 1 Oct 49. From MSTS to ComServLant 1 Mar 55. Decomm. and to MSTS 2 Oct 73. To NDRF 22 Nov 82. Withdrawn by Navy from NDRF 1 Dec 95 for scrapping under Navy contract at Brownsville, Texas.
58 MANATEE 724 To Naval Transportation Service 1 Mar 47. From NTS to MSTS as "Commissioned Naval Vessel" 1 Oct 49. From MSTS to ComServPac 18 Mar 51. To buyer 28 Dec 73.
59 MISSISSINEWA 725 Sunk at Ulithi by a Japanese "kaiten" manned torpedo probably released by the Japanese submarine I-47 just outside the lagoon. Wreck located 6 Apr 2001, USS SALVOR (ARS-53) led operation in February 2003 that removed the 1.95 million gallons of oil that remained on board.
60 NANTAHALA 726 To Naval Transportation Service 1 Mar 47. From NTS to MSTS as "Commissioned Naval Vessel" 1 Oct 49. In USN reserve 1949- 50 (from MSTS 1 Feb 50, decomm. 1 Jun 50, recomm. 30 Dec 50, to MSTS 27 Jan 51). From MSTS to ComServLant 20 Jul 51. Used as emergency fuel oil storage hulk at NSY Philadelphia 1973-75.
61 SEVERN 727 To Naval Transportation Service 1 Mar 47. From NTS to MSTS as "Commissioned Naval Vessel" 1 Oct 49. In USN reserve 1950 (decomm. 3 Jul 50, recomm. 29 Dec 50, to MSTS 19 Jan 51). From MSTS to ComServLant 27 Apr 51.
62 TALUGA 728 To Naval Transportation Service 1 Mar 47. From NTS to MSTS as "Commissioned Naval Vessel" 1 Oct 49. From MSTS to ComServPac 1 Aug 51. Decomm. and to MSTS 4 May 72. To NDRF 22 Nov 83. Title to MA 1 May 99. In Suisun Bay reserve fleet as of 31 May 10.
63 CHIPOLA 729 To Naval Transportation Service 2 Mar 47. From NTS to MSTS as "Commissioned Naval Vessel" 1 Oct 49. From MSTS to ComServLant 20 Sep 51. In USN reserve 1955-56 (decomm. 1 Aug 55, to MSTS 9 Nov 56, recomm. 29 Dec 56). Decomm. 7 Nov 57, to NDRF 4 Dec 57, to MA 10 Dec 58, stk. 1 Feb 59. From MA 15 Aug 60, on list 1 Sep 60 (regular Navy). To buyer 2 Oct 74.
64 TOLOVANA 730 To Naval Transportation Service 1 Mar 47. From NTS to MSTS as "Commissioned Naval Vessel" 1 Oct 49. From MSTS to ComServPac 1 Aug 51. To buyer 11 Nov 75.
97 ALLAGASH 2559 To NDRF 13 Nov 71.
98 CALOOSAHATCHEE 2560 Received "jumbo" conversion at Bethlehem Steel Co., Key Highway, Baltimore. New mid-section begun by Bethlehem Steel, Sparrows Point, Baltimore, 8 Jun 66. Ship arrived at Key Harbor 8 May 68, stern separated 4 Jun 68, bow separated 16 Jul 68, assembled ship undocked 6 Aug 68, conversion completed and ship recomm. 27 Sep 69. To NDRF 28 Feb 91. Withdrawn from NDRF 6 Oct 03 and arrived Teeside (Hartlepool), UK 12 Nov 03 for scrapping under sale of 25 Jul 03 but scrapping blocked by UK environmental concerns. Ship in MA custody at Teeside until 21 Apr 10 when "withdrawn" (possibly transferred to scrapper).
99 CANISTEO 2561 Received "jumbo" conversion at Bethlehem Steel Co., Key Highway, Baltimore. New mid-section begun by Bethlehem Steel, Sparrows Point, Baltimore, 3 Jan 66. Ship arrived at Key Harbor January 1967, conversion completed 12 Oct 68. To NDRF 5 Nov 90. Withdrawn from NDRF 6 Oct 03 and arrived Teeside (Hartlepool), UK 13 Nov 03 for scrapping under sale of 25 Jul 03 but scrapping blocked by UK environmental concerns. Ship in MA custody at Teeside as of 31 May 10.
100 CHUKAWAN 2562 To buyer 14 Mar 73.

Page Notes:
AO        1942
Compiled:        04 Aug 2010
© Stephen S. Roberts, 2002-2010