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Photo #  NH 105206:  SS Hercules, later USS Canton (ID # 2508) circa March 1918

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S.S. Hercules (Dutch Freighter, 1913)
Served as USS Canton (ID # 2508) in 1918-1919

Hercules, a 2286 gross ton (6200 tons displacement) cargo ship, was built at Capelle on the Ijssel, The Netherlands, in 1913 for the Royal Netherlands Steamship Co. She was chartered by the U.S. Shipping Board in February 1918, seized by the U.S. government at New York in March, and operated by the Shipping Board until 13 June when she was transferred to the Navy and commissioned at New York for operation by the Naval Overseas Transportation Service. She was probably placed in commission as USS Canton (ID # 2508), although the change of name from Hercules was not officially reported until the beginning of August.

In July and August 1918 the ship made a voyage from New York and Baltimore, Maryland, to Genoa, Italy, with aviation material for Italy, returning in ballast. Between October 1918 and January 1919 Canton steamed to the United Kingdom with cargo and returned to New York with demobilization material, including 800 tons of depth charges and field ammunition and 1000 tons of general cargo. After drydocking at Newport News, Virginia, she loaded a cargo of grain and general food supplies at Baltimore in March and delivered it to Copenhagen, Denmark, in April. After proceeding to Amsterdam, The Netherlands, USS Canton was decommissioned and returned to the Royal Netherlands Steamship Co. on 10 May 1919. She continued to serve this firm until 1953, when she was sold to Turkish owners as Herguler. In 1957 she became the Turkish Yolac Merve, and in 1964 she was sold for scrap in Istanbul.

This page features all available views concerning the Dutch freighter Hercules, which was USS Canton (ID # 2508) in 1918-1919.

Click on the small photograph to prompt a larger view of the same image.

Photo #: NH 105206

S.S. Hercules
(Dutch Freighter, 1913)

Probably photographed around the time of her seizure by the United States at New York on 20 March 1918, possibly when she was inspected by the Third Naval District on 26 March. She served in the Navy from 12 June 1918 to 10 May 1919 as USS Canton (ID # 2508).

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 43KB; 740 x 550 pixels

Photo #: None

S.S. Hercules
(Dutch Freighter, 1913)

Photographed in Dutch commercial service.

Source: www.kroonvaarders.nl/alfabet/hschepen/hercules1.htm.


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