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USNS Phoenix (T-AG 172) in December 1967.
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Class: PHOENIX (T-AG 172)
Design: MC VC2-S-AP3
Displacement (tons): 4,512 light, 15,200 full
Dimensions (feet): 455' oa, 444' wl x 62' e/wl x 28'
Armament: none
Accommodations: 48 officers, 161 unlicensed
Speed (kts.): 16
Propulsion (HP): 8,500
Machinery: Geared steam turbines, 2 boilers (465psi/750deg), 1 screw

172PHOENIX25 Oct 1962Oregon SB27 Feb 194510 Apr 1945by Jul 1963
173PROVO2 Mar 1963Oregon SB28 Apr 194517 Jun 1945by Jul 1963
174CHEYENNE29 Dec 1962Oregon SB8 May 194526 Jun 1945by Jul 1963

AGNameTInactStrikeDisposalFateMA Sale/Depart
172PHOENIXT197315 Jun 197331 Aug 1973MA/S--
173PROVOT197315 Jun 197331 Aug 1973MA/S--
174CHEYENNET197315 Jun 197331 Aug 1973MA/S--

Class Notes:
In late 1962 MSTS acquired three Victory ships to assist the Army in testing its Forward Floating Depot (FFD) concept, under which depot ships were prepositioned overseas as floating storage and to issue vital military materials in meeting contingencies. On 20 November 1962 SECNAV approved the changes in classifications and names of ARIZONA (MCV 183), UTAH (MCV 691) and WYOMING (MCV 693) respectively to PHOENIX (AG 172), PROVO (AG 173), and CHEYENNE (AG 174). They were fitted with dehumidifying gear in the holds to permit combat-loaded cargo to remain aboard in tropical climates without damage caused by mildew or dampness. In July 1963 all three ships were stationed at Subic Bay, Philippines. From this location they could quickly move their material anywhere in Southeast Asia where it would be married up with airlifted troops. The concept was tested in Operation "Quick Release" in the port of Naha, Okinawa, in late January 1964, and the test was considered successful. However as the Vietnam War intensified the three ships delivered their loads to Vietnam and then served as point-to-point freighters within the Far East area. The prepositioning concept lay dormant for about a decade but revived on a large scale beginning with the Rapid Deployment Force (RDF) of 1979 and ultimately the Maritime Prepositioning Squadrons (MPS) of the 1980s.

Ship Notes:
172PHOENIX183(ex-ARIZONA, ex-CAPITAL VICTORY 1948, completed 8 May 1945). FY 1963. Laid up by MA at San Francisco 1960, transferred to MSTS on 24 October 1962. Converted by Willamette Iron and Steel Co., Portland, Ore., November 1962. Reassigned to general cargo operations, with a Korean crew in 1965 under the control of MSTSPAC, placed out of service in 1970. To buyer 20 Sep 1973 at Yokosuka.
173PROVO691(ex-UTAH, ex-CALIFORNIA 1963, ex-DREW VICTORY 1949, completed 14 Jul 1945). FY 1963. Accepted from MA in San Francisco on 2 March 1963 simultaneously with her acceptance by MARAD from her commercial operator, converted in April-May 1963 by Willamette Iron and Steel Co., Portland, Ore., arrived at Subic Bay July 1963. PROVO later acted as a point to point cargo carrier, delivering military supplies to Okinawa and Viet Nam from stocking points in Japan and Subic Bay. To buyer 20 Sep 1973 at Yokosuka.
174CHEYENNE693(ex-WYOMING, ex-MIDDLESEX VICTORY 1948, completed 24 Jul 1945). FY 1963. Transferred from MARAD end 1962. In 1966 she changed home port to Pusan Korea and was manned by Korean merchant seaman. At that time she was one of 4 cargo ships and 19 USNS LSTs operating out of MSTS Office Pusan primarily providing support in the Viet Nam theater. Her master was a former ROK Navy captain. To buyer 20 Sep 1973 at Yokosuka.

Page Notes:
Compiled: 18 Oct 2021
© Stephen S. Roberts, 2021
Sources: Norman Friedman, U.S. Amphibious Ships and Craft (Annapolis, 2002).