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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive

USS Sagittarius (AKN-2)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Whiskey - Alpha - Kilo
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - Combat Action Ribbon (retroactive -Okinawa)
Bottom Row - American Campaign Medal - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (2) - World War II Victory Medal

Indus Class Net Cargo Ship:
  • Laid down, 8 September 1943, as SS J. Fred Essary, a Maritime Commission type (EC2-S-C1) hull under Maritime Commission contract (MCE hull 1835) at Bethlehem-Fairfield Shipyard Inc., Baltimore, MD.
  • Launched, 30 September 1943
  • Acquired by the Navy, 8 December 1943
  • Commissioned USS Sagittarius (AKN-2), 18 March 1944, CDR. L. B. Hillsinger USNR in command
  • During World War II USS Sagittarius was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater and participated in the following campaigns:

    Asiatic-Pacific Campaigns
    Campaigns and Dates Campaigns and Dates
    Marianas operation
    Capture and occupation of Saipan, 1 to 6 August 1944
    Okinawa Gunto operation
    Assault and occupation of Okinawa Gunto, 17 April to 30 June 1945

  • Decommissioned, 16 January 1946
  • Transferred to the Maritime Commission, 19 January 1946, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, name reverted to SS J. Fred Essary
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 7 February 1946
  • USS Sagittarius earned two battle stars during World War II
  • Final Disposition, sold for scrapping, 12 September 1972, to Issac Varela for scrapping at Castellon, Spain
    Displacement 4,023 t.(lt) 14,550 t.(fl)
    Length 441' 6"
    Beam 56' 11"
    Draft 28' 4"
    Speed 12.5 kts.
    Officers 20
    Enlisted 208
    Largest Boom Capacity 10t.
    one single 5"/38 cal dual purpose gun mount
    four single 40mm AA gun mounts
    Fuel Capacities
    NSFO 10,000 Bbls
    Diesel 2,000 Bbls
    one Hoover, Owens, Rentschler Co. vertical triple-expansion reciprocating steam engine
    two Babcock and Wilcox header-type boilers, 220psi 450°
    three turbo-drive 60K 120V D.C. Ship's Service Generators
    single propeller, 2,500shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Source
    Sagittarius 55k i>Sagittarius (AKN-2) after launching at Bethlehem-Fairfield Shipyard Inc., Baltimore, MD., 30 September 1943. David Nixon
    Sagittarius 102k USS Sagittarius (AKN-2) preparing to lower a Sea Mule over the side in April or May 1945 during the invasion of Okinawa. The Sea Mule helped deploy the nets, bundles of which are piled high on deck.
    US Navy photo # 80-G-327857 RG-80-G, US National Archives, courtesy
    Mike Green
    Sagittarius 104k USS Sagittarius (AKN-2) at anchor off San Francisco, 17 January 1945.
    US Navy Bureau of Ships photo # 19-N-85162 RG-10-LCM, now in the collections of the US National Archives, courtesy
    Mike Green
    Sagittarius 412k USS Sagittarius (AKN-2) CDR. L. B. Hillsinger USNR stands on the pier beside his ship, circa August 1945, location unknown.
    US Navy photo.
    Ed Zajkowski

    USS Sagittarius (AKN-2)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01CDR. Hillsinger, Lyle B., USNR18 March 1944 - 21 November 1945
    02LCDR. Smith, Michael P., USNR21 November 1945 - 16 January 1946
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves

    Crew Contact And Reunion Information
    U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation - Navy Log

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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last Updated 21 November 2014