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NavSource Online: Submarine Photo Archive


Contributed by Don McGrogan, BMCS, USN (ret.)

Shark / A-7 (SS-8)


Radio Call Sign: November - Sierra - Kilo

Adder Class Submarine Torpedo Boat: Laid down, 11 January 1901, as Shark, at Crescent Shipyard, Elizabethport, NJ; Launched, 19 October 1901; Commissioned USS Shark, 19 September 1903; Decommissioned, 21 April 1908, at New York Navy Yard; Transported to Cavite Navy Yard, PI, and recommissioned there, 14 August 1909; Renamed A-7 (Submarine Torpedo Boat No. 8), 17 November 1911; Decommissioned, 12 December 1919, at Cavite; Designated (SS-8), 17 July 1920; Struck from the Naval Register, 16 January 1922; Final Disposition, authorized for use as a target.

Specifications: Displacement; Surfaced, 107 t., Submerged, 123 t.; Length 63' 10"; Beam 11' 11"; Draft 10' 7"; Speed, Surfaced, 8 kts, Submerged, 7 kts; Depth Limit 150'; Complement, 1 Officer, 6 Enlisted; Armament, one 18" torpedo tube, 5 torpedoes; Propulsion, Otto Gas Engine Works gasoline engine, HP 160; Fuel Capacity 767 gal.; Electro Dynamic electric motors, HP 150; Battery Cells 60; single screw.
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SizeImage DescriptionSource
Plunger856kPlunger (SS-2) and Shark (SS-8) moored, 1902. Photo is labeled U.S.S.M.B. Plunger, possibly a Holland Co. photo. US National Archives photo # 19-N-15-25, a US Navy Bureau of Ships photo now in the collections of the US National Archives.
Shark124k Shark (SS-8) with other submarine torpedo boats of her class, while fitting out in 1902, probably at New Suffolk, Long Island, New York. USNHC photograph # NH 41903
Moccasin 107k Moccasin (SS-5) Electric Boat Company/Holland Torpedo Boat Company facility, New Suffolk, Long Island, New York.
Submarines in the facility basin, circa 1903. Boats in the front group are (from left to right): Plunger (SS-2); Porpoise (SS-7); and Adder (SS-3). In the background, by the breakwater are (left-right): Shark (SS-8) and Moccasin (SS-5). Photographed by Legendre & Levick, New York.
USNHC photograph # NH 45937.
Shark64k Shark (SS-8) underway with members of her crew on deck, circa 1903-1907. Photograph from the Bureau of Ships Collection in the U.S. National Archives. USNHC photograph # 19-N-6787
Shark108k A-7 Shark (SS-8) with her crew on deck, while moored between a torpedo boat (at left) and another submarine, circa 1903-1907. USNHC photograph # NH 85827
Adder Class Diag.514k Tank layout of the Adder class submarine by Bureau of Construction and Repair, Navy Department August 1904.USN photo courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Shark564k2 views of Shark (SS-8) and Porpoise (SS-7) behind her in Dry Dock Number 1, Brooklyn Navy Yard, 23 March 1905. National Archives Identifier: 6880340 & 6880343
Agency-Assigned Identifier: F1021 N1 & insert F1040.
Photo courtesy of catalog.archives.gov
Porpoise566kPorpoise (SS-7) and in front of her is Shark (SS-8) in Dry Dock Number 1 at Brooklyn Navy Yard, 23 March 1905. National Archives Identifier: 6880353
Agency-Assigned Identifier: F1022 N1.
Photo courtesy of catalog.archives.gov
Porpoise and Shark138k Shark (SS-8) at left, and Porpoise (SS-7) on cradles at the New York Navy Yard, circa 1905. Photograph by Enrique Muller, published on a contemporary postal card by the American Colortype Company. USNHC photograph # NH 98835-KN courtesy of the Naval Historical Foundation. Collection of Commander Theodore G. Ellyson, USN.
A-7 427k LIEUTENANT SHAPLEIGH, OF THE SHARK (SS-8), ONE OF THE FOREMOST SUBMARINE COMMANDANTS OF THE AMERICAN NAVY, AND HIS MASCOT, MING.
This is probably the champion deep-diving terrier of the world. He accompanies his master below the surface on all occasions.
Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo from New-York Tribune. (New York [N.Y.]) 1866-1924, 29 April 1906, Image 19, via chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.
Shark
0800815
645k Photo from Scribner's Monthly, July-December 1906 edition, possibly during the Presidential Review at Oyster Bay, NY in September 1906.
On the right is a Truxtun class destroyer. Based on DANFS it can either be Truxtun (DD-14) or Whipple (DD-15).
The battleship in the center is a Maine class BB, and is either the Maine (BB-10) or Missouri (BB-11). Once again given the info in DANFS it is most likely the Maine.
On the left is an Illinois class BB, either the Illinois (BB-7) or the Alabama (BB-8), and most likely the Alabama.
Here is another thought… could this be the Presidential Review at Oyster Bay, NY in September 1906? Shark (SS-8) from the July-December 1906 edition of Scribner's Monthly participating in fleet review of Oyster Bay.
Photo courtesy of Darryl L. Baker.
Text i.d. courtesy of David Johnston (USN, retired)
Porpoise and Shark697k Loaded on board the collier Caesar (AC-16), Shark (SS-8) and her sistership, Porpoise (SS-7), comprised the auxiliary's deck cargo as she proceeded, via Suez, for the Philippine Islands. Photo taken at the New York Navy Yard in April 1908.
Text courtesy of DANFS.
USN photo thanks to Jim Kurrasch @ Battleship Iowa, Pacific Battleship Center.
Porpoise, Plunger and Shark145kNew York Navy Yard, Brooklyn, New York: Submarines Shark (SS-8), Plunger (SS-2 ) and Porpoise (SS-7) housed over and covered with snow, in one of the Navy Yard's drydocks, 25 January 1908. USNHC photograph # NH 19-N-15-28-7, courtesy of Commander Donald J. Robinson, USN (Retired), 1977.
2, 7 & 8
0800709
1.42k New York Navy Yard, Brooklyn, New York: Submarines Shark (SS-8), Plunger (SS-2 ) and Porpoise (SS-7) housed over and covered with snow, in one of the Navy Yard's drydocks, 25 January 1908. Photo i.d. via Ric Hednan .
Photo courtesy of loc.gov, courtesy of the George Grantham Bain Collection.
Reproduction Number LC-DIG-ggbain-00108.
Porpoise2.97kCOLLIER AND TWO SUBMARINES BEING PREPARED AT THE NAVY YARD FOR TRIP TO THE PACIFIC.SUBMARINES FOR PACIFIC
The Collier Caesar (AC-16) Will Carry Two of Them on Long Trip.
Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC.
Photo from New-York Tribune. (New York [N.Y.]) 1866-1924, 15 March 1908, Image 58, via chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.
Porpoise and Shark81kCaesar (AC-16) at anchor in 1908-1909, while transporting submarines to the Philippine Islands. The "boats" are either submarines Shark (SS-8), and Porpoise (SS-7) which were embarked on Caesar (AC-16) in April-July 1908, or Adder (SS-03) and Moccasin (SS-5), which were on board in July-October 1909. USNHC photograph # NH 78275
A-7 1.35k PREDICT GREAT FUTURE FOR TINY SEA WASPS
Tests Lead Naval Experts to Believe Submarines Will Be Part of Equipment of All Battleships. It is only a question of a very few years when one of those nerve testing little ship assassins known as submarines, will be a part of the equipment of every battleship, is the consensus of opinion among naval experts.
The launching of the submarine Shark (SS-8) at Manila. Upper—Ready to "let go." Lower—As the Shark struck the water.
Note; The caption says English vessel, but the American flag is flying from the flagstaff.
Image and text provided by Washington State Library; Olympia, WA. & University of California, Riverside.
Photo & text by The Spokane Press.(Spokane, Wash.) 1902-1939, 28 January 1909, Image 7, & Los Angeles Herald. (Los Angeles [Calif.]) 1900-1911, 03 January 1909, Image 46, courtesy of chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.
Castle 63k Lt. Guy Wilkinson Stuart Castle was the commanding officer of the Shark (SS-8) from 1908 to 1909. USN photo courtesy of Bill Gonyo.
Jensen87kEnsign Henry Martin Jensen was Commanding the First Submarine Division Asiatic Torpedo Fleet aboard the submarine Shark (SS-8) in 1910. Photo courtesy of the Library of Congress via Bill Gonyo.
Shark115k Shark (SS-8) in the Dewey Drydock, Olongapo Naval Station, Philippines, circa 1910. The gunboat Elcano is also in the drydock, in the right background. USNHC photograph # NH 86963.
Shark144k Shark (SS-8) at the Cavite Navy Yard, Philippine Islands, circa 1910-1911. USNHC photograph # NH 90170, Collection of Phillip H. Wilson. Donated by Mrs. Pauline M. Wilson, 1979.
Who Am I? 528k SUBMARINE THAT TOOK PART IN GREAT RECORD SWIM Photo i.d. courtesy of David Johnston
Image and text provided by University of Hawaii at Manoa; Honolulu, HI.
Photo from Evening Bulletin. (Honolulu [Oahu, Hawaii) 1895-1912, 22 July 1911, 3:30 EDITION, Image 17, via chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.
Shark144kShark (SS-8), right at the Cavite Navy Yard, Philippines, prior to World War I. USNHC photograph # NH 78670.
Shark80k A-7 (ex-Shark) (SS-8) right B-1,(ex-Viper) (SS-10), center in Philippine waters, during the Nineteen-"Teens". Both show the submarine bells used for underwater communication ( B-1's is on her foredeck, A-7's abaft her conning tower). Note how rudimentary their bridges were. USNHC photograph # NH 69710. Text courtesy of U.S. Submarines Through 1945, An Illustrated Design History by Norman Friedman. Naval Institute Press.
Shark84k A-7 (SS-8) underway during diving exercises in Manila Bay, Philippine Islands, circa 1912. USNHC photograph # NH 90189.
A6 & 7186kWinds whip the flags of A-6 (SS-7) & A-7 (SS-8) at Cavite.Photo courtesy of Frederick J. Moisson, Collection Manager & Volunteer Coordinator, Museum of Military History, 5210 West Irlo Bronson Memorial Highway, Kissimmee, Florida 34746.
A-7 584k American Submarine Which Blew Up Near Manila.
The American submarine, A-7 (SS-8) built in 1902, blew up in a mysterious manner while off Cavite near Manila in the Philliipine Islands. Five men, including her commander, Lieutenant Arnold Marcus, were killed. The first report had it that the cause was the formation of a pocket of gasoline within the ship.
Image and text provided by University of Oregon Libraries; Eugene, OR.
Photo from The Evening Herald. (Klamath Falls, Or.) 1906-1942, 02 August 1917, Image 4, via chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.
Shark21k Arnold Marcus, Lieutenant, Junior Grade (Commanding Officer) of the A-7 (SS-8) when he died as a result of injuries suffered the previous day in a gasoline explosion and fire aboard A-7 on 25 July 1917. USN photo courtesy of oneternalpatrol.com.
Philippines 455k Submarine base at Cavite. Manila, Philippine Islands.
It looks as if all 4 boats appear in this circa 1917 photo.
Photographer: Committee on Public Information
National Archives Identifier: 45511423
Local Identifier: 165-WW-328E-5
Photo courtesy of catalog.archives.gov
Jensen187kCommemorative photo honoring the memory of the crew of the Shark (SS-8). Photo courtesy of Raymond Fritz. ET1(SS).

View the Shark / A-7 (SS-8)
DANFS history entry located on the Haze Gray & Underway Web Site.
Crew Contact And Reunion Information
Not Applicable to this Vessel
Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
PigBoats.COM TM, a Historic Look at Submarines

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