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S.S. Toteco, later USS Accelerate (ARS-30)
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Class: ACCELERATE (ARS-30)
Design Mooring tender, 1921
Displacement (tons): 400 light, 449 gross
Dimensions (feet): 129.5' oa x 32.0'
Original Armament: 2-6pdr
Later armaments: --
Speed (kts.): 12
Propulsion (HP): 450
Machinery: 1 screw, 2-cylinder compound engine
||2 Apr 42
||Kyle & Purdy
||7 Feb 47
||28 Aug 47
||26 Aug 47
Funded by FY 1942 BuShips maintenance funds. In 1921 the Kyle & Purdy yard at City Island, N.Y. delivered the steam-propelled mooring tender TOTECO to the International Petroleum Co. The craft, which had a large boom probably for handling buoys, was powered by the same compound (two cylinder) 450 NHP steam engine that the Shipping Board used in the 95-foot tugs that it built during World War I but had less boiler power than did the tugs. She was sold to Elmer D. Walling of Bloomfield (Montclair), N.J, and renamed WALLING in 1930.
The vessel was requisition purchased by the Navy from Mr. Walling and taken over by the Navy's Port Director in New York on 2 Apr 42. On 30 Apr 42 BuShips issued a $5,000 project order to the New York Navy Yard for fitting out and converting this vessel to a salvage vessel, but no Navy conversion proved to be necessary and the project order was cancelled on 13 Apr 43 without the expenditure of any funds. Instead the craft was turned over to Merritt-Chapman & Scott for operation under contract NObs-36. The exact date of the assignment of her hull number and Navy name has not been located, although it was most likely in April 1942.
On 22 Jul 42 the Commandant, 1st Naval District, reported to the Commander, Eastern Sea Frontier that the salvage tug WALLING (sic.) was alongside a dock at Woods Hole, Mass., having completed certain salvage work at the Cape Cod Canal. Com-1 understood that this vessel was under charter to the Navy by Merritt-Chapman & Scott. Com-1 noted that on the occasion of a recent grounding of a merchant vessel in the entrance to Buzzards Bay the services of the WALLING had been immediately available and that much time had been saved in obtaining a diver's report. He therefore recommended that the WALLING or a vessel equipped with diving and derrick facilities be permanently stationed at Woods Hold for future emergencies, and that such a vessel would also be available for rescue service when necessary. BuShips responded on 6 Aug 42 that this vessel was now S.S. ACCELERATE, a unit of the Bureau of Ships salvage service that had been described to all of the Naval Districts in a CNO letter of 14 Jan 42. The Bureau added that demands on the limited number of salvage vessels available made it impracticable to assign them to permanent stations but rather necessitated their transfer from time to time, and it appears that ACCELERATE was relocated on 22-23 Nov 43 from Newport, R.I. to New York, where she seems to have operated for the remainder of the war. A commissioning date of 15 Mar 45 was recorded for this vessel but does not correspond to any known event in her career or with any other records. The Navy accepted custody back from Merritt-Chapman & Scott at Brooklyn on 5 Sep 46 preparatory to disposal. The MC sold her to John A. Papadopoulos who registered her under the name MARIGO; she operated as the Venezuelan GEORGE from 1951 to 1998.
||Ex tug or lighter WALLING, ex TOTECO 1930 (completed June 1921). Merc. MARIGO 1948, SEMARA II 1950, GEORGE 1951 (all Venezuelan), deleted 1998.
Compiled: 31 Mar 2011
© Stephen S. Roberts, 2002-2010