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NavSource Online: Submarine Photo Archive

L-1 (SS-40)

Radio Call Sign: November - Yankee - November

L Class Submarine: Laid down, 13 April 1914, at Fore River Shipbuilding Co., Quincy, MA.; Launched, 20 January 1915; Commissioned, USS L-1, 11 April 1916; Designated (SS-40), 17 July 1920; Decommissioned, 7 April 1922, at Hampton Roads (Submarine Base); Struck from the Naval Register, (date unknown); Final Disposition, sold for scrapping, 31 July 1922, to Pottstown Steel Co.

Specifications: Displacement, Surfaced: 450 t., Submerged: 548 t..; Length 167' 5"; Beam 17' 5"; Draft 13' 7"; Speed, Surfaced 14 kts, Submerged 10.5 kts; Depth Limit 200'; Complement 2 Officers, 26 Enlisted; Armament, four 18", torpedo tubes, 8 torpedoes, one 3"/23 deck gun; Propulsion, diesel-electric, New London Ship and Engine Co. diesel engine, HP 900, Fuel Capacity, 18,977 gal., Electro Dynamic Co. electric motor, HP 680, Battery Cells 120, single propeller.
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L-1 729k The submarine torpedoboat, L-1 (SS-40), the largest of its kind ever built for the United States, has just been launched at the Fore River shipbuilding yards, at Quincy, Mass. Mrs. Elizabeth Scott Daubin, wife of Lieutenant Freeland A. Daubin, commander of the boat, christened the vessel. Image provided by: Penn State University Libraries; University Park, PA.
Photo from Evening Public Ledger. (Philadelphia [Pa.]) 1914-1942, 26 January 1915, Night Extra, Image 1 via chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.
L-1 65k L-1 (SS-40), port side view, underway off Provincetown, Mass. March 1915. Note her canvas enclosed bridge, which was standard feature until the advent of the N-Class. US Navy photo # 19-N-11481, from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), courtesy of Daniel Dunham.
L-1 82k L-1 (SS-40), starboard side view, underway off Provincetown, Mass, March 1915 underway at 14 knots. US Navy photo # 19-N-39-17-2A, from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), courtesy of Daniel Dunham.
SS 40 924k Sub L-1 (SS-40) breaking surface after trail run, 13 May 1916. Photo courtesy of the Boston Public Library, Leslie Jones Collection via Sean Hert & flickr.com.
M-1 743k All the news that's fit to misprint, #1.
UNITED STATES TESTS FIRST OF BIG NEW SEA-GOING SUBMARINES
The M-1 (SS-47) is shown on her trial trip off Provincetown, Mass., on 6 July. She is 230 1/2 feet long, with 21 1/2-foot beam. Her radius of action is 2,000 miles.
She is not as large as the German submarine Deutschland, now at Baltimore, whoso length is 315 feet, with a 30 foot beam.
It is actually an EB design L-class boat. The paper that originally published the photo misidentified it. The caption is wrong.
Photo & text i.d. courtesy of Dave Johnston.
Image provided by: Penn State University Libraries; University Park, PA.
Photo from Evening Public Ledger. (Philadelphia [Pa.]) 1914-1942, 11 July 1916, Night Extra, Image 2, via chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.
M-1 531k All the news that's fit to misprint, # 2.
LARGEST SUBMARINE STANDS STIFF TEST
Above is a picture of the U.S. submarine M-1 (SS-47) the largest submarine of our navy. She was photographed while being put through an exciting trip at Provincetown. Mass. She can travel 5000 miles without a stop, 1000 more than was covered by the Deutschland.".
It is actually an EB design L-class boat. The paper that originally published the photo misidentified it. The caption is wrong.
Photo & text i.d. courtesy of Dave Johnston.
Image and text provided by University of North Texas; Denton, TX.
Photo from El Paso Herald. (El Paso, Tex.) 1901-1931, 21 July 1916, HOME EDITION, Image 6, via chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.
L-1 166k Starboard side view of the L-1 (SS-40) off Hampton Roads, 13 December 1916. US Navy photo courtesy of ussubvetsofwwii.org.
L-1 118k L-1 (SS-40) port side view anchored off of Hampton Roads, 13 December 1916. US Navy photo # 19-N-9263, from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), courtesy of Daniel Dunham.
L-1 112k L-1 (SS-40), starboard view, underway at Hampton Roads, 13 December 1916. US Navy photo # 19-N-1891, from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), courtesy of Daniel Dunham.
L-1 106k L-1 (SS-40), port side view anchored off of Hampton Roads, 13 December 1916. US Navy photo # 19-N-1892, from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), courtesy of Daniel Dunham.
L-1 & 3 109k L-1 (SS-40) and L-3 (SS-42) port side view anchored off of Hampton Roads, 13 December 1916. US Navy photo # 19-N-1893, from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), courtesy of Daniel Dunham.
SS-40 & 4273k Scoter (American Motor Boat, 1916) passing L-1 (SS-40) while underway, probably in 1916. L-3 (SS-42) and Monaghan (DD-32) are in the background. This pleasure craft, built by George Lawley & Son of Neponset, Massachusetts, became Scoter (SP-20) in 1917. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 65071.
L-boats46k"Officials of the City of Havana leaving the submarine L-2 (SS-41) after a ceremonious visit to a group of L-boats of the U.S. submarine division on it's recent visit to the Cuban capital. Said to have been the first time American submarines have visited that city." Photo by Underwood & Underwood, courtesy of memory.loc.gov. Text courtesy of N.Y. Times, 14 January 1917, Page 3.
Pennell 127k What looks to be L-class (SS-40/51) submarines in dry dock, by the artist Joseph Pennell, 1917. Photo # 3c19552v, LC-USZ62-119552. Photograph courtesy of memory.loc.gov.
Tonopah 496k A MOTHER SEADOG GUARDING HER PUPPIES
This interesting photograph was taken within the Charlestown Navy Yard, where the United States submarine tender Tonopah (M-8) lies at anchor with her undersea charges, comprising submarine fleet No.3, of the North Atlantic fleet.
Probable submarines are the E.B. designed L-boats (SS-40 / 43 & 49 / 51), [L-1 thru 4 & 9 thru 11.]
Image and text provided by Penn State University Libraries; University Park, PA.
Photo from Evening Public Ledger.(Philadelphia [Pa.]) 1914-1942, 02 June 1917, Postscript Edition, Pictorial Section, Image 19, via chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.
L- boats 753k Sack Time. Typical of the subject submarines, here men are stacked four high on canvas fold away bunks aboard an American L-boat in the European theater. Photo from Illustrated London News, 28 September, 1918, courtesy of Beneath the Surface: World War I Submarines Built in Seattle and Vancouver by Bill Lightfoot.
SS-4087kL-1 (SS-40) in Bantry Bay, Ireland, with crew members standing in formation on her foredeck, 1918. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 51156.
SS-4074kL-1 (SS-40) comes to the surface after submerged runs at Berehaven, Ireland, 1918. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 51163.
SS-40114kL-1 (SS-40) alongside Bushnell (AS-2) at Portland, England, 1918. Note L-1's 3"/23 retracting deck gun trained out to starboard, and "Y-tube" hydrophone immediately behind her open foredeck hatch. Also note the boat boom attached to Bushnell's side, with pivoting mechanism at its end and walkway board on its upper surface. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 51159.
SS-51,50,40, 49 & 4189k L-boats alongside Bushnell (AS-2) at Bantry Bay, Ireland, in 1918. These submarines are, from left to right:
unidentified submarine;
L-11 (SS-51),
L-10 (SS-50),
L-1 (SS-40),
L-9 (SS-49)&
L-2 (SS-41).
Identification marks painted on these "boats"' fairwaters include the letter "A", to distinguish them from British L-boats .
U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 51172.
SS-40403kSignaling from the bow of the L-1 (SS-40). US Navy photo, courtesy of Scott Koen & ussnewyork.com.
SS-50,40, 49 &  4380k L-boats alongside Bushnell (AS-2) at Bantry Bay, Ireland, in 1918. These submarines are, from left to right:
unidentified submarine;
L-1 (SS-40),
L-10 (SS-50),
L-4 (SS-43)&
L-9 (SS-49).
U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 51171.
SS-50,40, 49 &  4387k L-boats alongside Bushnell (AS-2) at Bantry Bay, Ireland, in 1918. These submarines are, from left to right:
unidentified submarine;
L-1 (SS-40),
L-10 (SS-50),
L-4 (SS-43)&
L-9 (SS-49).
Note the smoke from the submarines' engines.
U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 51170.
SS-50,40,  &  4383kThese submarines are, from left to right:
L-4 (SS-43)&
L-10 (SS-50),
L-1 (SS-40).
At the Philadelphia Navy Yard, Pennsylvania, soon their 1 February 1919 return to the U.S. from European waters. Note what appears to be a very long "homeward bound" pennant flying from the top of L-1's (SS-40), periscope.
U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 51158.
SS-50,40,  &  4383kThese submarines are, from left to right:
L-4 (SS-43)&
L-10 (SS-50),
L-1 (SS-40).
At the Philadelphia Navy Yard, Pennsylvania, soon their 1 February 1919 return to the U.S. from European waters. Note chevrons painted on the submarines' fairwaters, signifying World War I overseas service.
U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 51144.
SS-50,40,  &  4383kThese submarines are, from left to right:
L-4 (SS-43),
L-10 (SS-50),
L-1 (SS-40).
At the Philadelphia Navy Yard, Pennsylvania, soon their 1 February 1919 return to the U.S. from European waters. Ship in the immediate background is either Quinnebaug (ID # 1687) or Saranac (ID # 1702), with the other of the two beyond her.
U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 51142.
SS-50,40,  &  43104kThese submarines are, from left to right:
L-4 (SS-43),
L-10 (SS-50),
L-1 (SS-40).
At the Philadelphia Navy Yard, Pennsylvania, soon their 1 February 1919 return to the U.S. from European waters. Ship in the immediate background is either Quinnebaug (ID # 1687) or Saranac (ID # 1702), with the other of the two beyond her.
U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 51143.
L-1 90k E.B.'s L-1 (SS-40) is shown as designed (inboard, top) and during WW I (outboard & plan views, middle & bottom), when she served in British waters as AL-1 . Wartime modifications include installation of a disappearing mount for the 3in/23 gun and sound gear (Y-tubes on deck, on the keel & a T-shaped SC tube on deck forward of the deck Y-tube), as well as a permanent sheltered bridge. The disappearing gun mount was inspired by a German 3.5-in (88-mm)gun seen on board prewar U-Boats. This was E.B.'s first class to use independent torpedo tube shutters, rather than a single-rotating bow cap. Drawing by Jim Christley. Text courtesy of U.S. Submarines Through 1945, An Illustrated Design History by Norman Friedman.Naval Institute Press.
L-1 69k WW I taught the U.S. Navy to order submarine priorities differently. At Berehaven, Ireland, in late 1918, L-1 (SS-40) displays her disappearing-mount 3 in/23 gun. The battleship Nevada (BB-36) is in the background. Photo & text courtesy of U.S. Submarines Through 1945, An Illustrated Design History by Norman Friedman. Naval Institute Press.
L-1 61k L-1 (SS-40) & an unidentified L-boat lay alongside their tender at Berehaven, Ireland, late 1918. The battleship Nevada (BB-36) is in the background. Photo & text courtesy of U.S. Submarines Through 1945, An Illustrated Design History by Norman Friedman. Naval Institute Press.
SS-40122k Crew member posing atop L-1's (SS-40) starboard diving plane, at Berehaven, Ireland, 1918. Note line coiled on the submarine's deck. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 51162.
L-boats 705k Submarines right to left are L-3 (SS-42), L-4 (SS-43) & L-1 (SS-40) to Constitution at Boston Navy Yard, circa 1918-20.Photo i.d. courtesy of Ric Hedmen.
Photo # 08_06_023224 courtesy of the Boston Public Library, Leslie Jones Collection via Sean Hert & flickr.com.
L-boats 1.12k Submarines left to right are L-3 (SS-42), L-4 (SS-43) & L-1 (SS-40) of the Constitution at Boston Navy Yard, circa 1918-20.Photo # 08_06_023224 courtesy of the Boston Public Library, Leslie Jones Collection via Sean Hert & flickr.com.
Low 74k Admiral Francis Stuart Low was born in Albany, New York, on 15 August 1894, son of the late Commander William Franklin Low, USN, and Mrs. Anna (Stuart) Low. He attended High School in Newton, Massachusetts and US Naval Academy, graduating from the later with the Class of 1915. In 1926 he completed the junior course at the Naval War College, Newport, Rhode Island. His first assignments after graduation were in the battleship Connecticut (BB-18) and cruiser Montana (ACR-13). In the early part of his illustrious career, he was designated a submariner, and commanded the submarines D-3 (SS-19), O-9 (SS-70), L-1 (SS-40), L-2 (SS-41), S-12 (SS-117), and served on the staffs of Commander Submarine Division FIVE and Commander Control Force during and subsequent to World War One. This continuous sea duty from 1915 to 1925 was briefly interrupted for a six months assignment with the Tactical Group Submarine Chasers, New London, Connecticut. Text & US Navy photo courtesy of Bill Gonyo.
Photo added 01/09/14.
SS 36 318k Old and new at Navy Yard, latest class submarine, L-1 (SS-40), alongside Old Ironsides on Navy day. Photo courtesy of the Boston Public Library, Leslie Jones Collection via Sean Hert & flickr.com.
Photo i.d. courtesy of Ric Hedman.
L-boats 244k L-1 (SS-40) & L-2 (SS-41) at Boston Navy Yard, circa 1918-20.Photo # 08_06_023227 courtesy of the Boston Public Library, Leslie Jones Collection via Sean Hert & flickr.com.
SS-18, 19, 40, 43 & 5091k D-3 (SS-19), at left, and D-2 (SS-18) center at the Philadelphia Navy Yard, Pennsylvania, 5 March 1919, with shipyard workmen on board. Note the ventilating fans on D-3's deck. A derrick barge is alongside D-2 . Among the four submarines visible in the background are L-1 (SS-40), L-4 (SS-43) and L-10 (SS-50). A motorcycle is parked at the far left. U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 51157.
L-1 646k STRUCK BY PILOT BOAT PHILADELPHIA. Image provided by: Penn State University Libraries; University Park, PA.
Photo from Evening Public Ledger. (Philadelphia [Pa.]) 1914-1942, 02 February 1921, NIGHT EXTRA, Image 15, via chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.
L-1 613k Three photos here show:
SAFE INSIDE THE DELAWARE BREAKWATER: The United States submarine L-1 (SS-40), rammed by the pilot boat Philadelphia off the Delaware capes early Tuesday morning was towed to safety while the heroic crew worked without rest to keep the craft afloat.
IN COMMAND: Lieutenant Robert P. Luker, in charge of the wrecked submersible, assisting in the work of salvaging his ship. With him is Lieutenant Commander Halhook Gibson (right), in command of the submarine base at the Philadelphia Navy Yard.
LEAVING THE L-1 : Members of the submarine's crew going to a nearby tug for a good meal and rest after assuring themselves that their boat would not sink. The position of the L-1 as it lies in the water off Lewes, Del.
Image provided by: Penn State University Libraries; University Park, PA.
Photo from Evening Public Ledger. (Philadelphia [Pa.]) 1914-1942, 04 February 1921, NIGHT EXTRA, Image 30, via chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.
SS-4070kL-1 (SS-40) tied up alongside Kalmia (AT-23) off Lewes, Delaware, on 5 February 1921. L-1's after ballast tanks have been partially filled, raising her bow.U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph, # NH 51164, data courtesy of Gary Priolo.
L-1 731k "CARRIED" EIGHTY-FIVE MILES.
The United States submarine L-1 (SS-40), rammed last week by a pilot boat off the Delaware capes, came into the Philadelphia Navy Yard yesterday, supported by the salvage tug Kalmia (AT-23) (left) and the navy yard tug Modoc. At the right can be seen an ten-inch pump line from the Kalmia which kept the water out of the engine hatch-room of the submersible during the trip from Lowes, Del. A smaller pump line worked from the Modoc.
Image provided by: Penn State University Libraries; University Park, PA.
Photo from Evening Public Ledger. (Philadelphia [Pa.]) 1914-1942, 08 February 1921, NIGHT EXTRA, Image 24, via chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.
L-1 664k HEADING CONFERENCE ON L-1 (SS-40) ACCIDENT Image provided by: Penn State University Libraries; University Park, PA.
Photo from Evening Public Ledger. (Philadelphia [Pa.]) 1914-1942, 10 February 1921, NIGHT EXTRA, Image 4, via chroniclingamerica.loc.gov.

View the L-1 (SS-40)
DANFS history entry located on the Haze Gray & Underway Web Site.
Crew Contact And Reunion Information
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