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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive

USNS Tamalpais (T-AO-96)
Tamalpais (AO-96) (1948 - 1950)
USS Tamalpais (AO-96) (1945 - 1946)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Kilo - Juliet - Oscar
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - China Service Medal (extended) - American Campaign Medal
Bottom Row - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia clasp)

Escambia Class Fleet Oiler:
  • Laid down, 18 September 1944, as SS Mission San Francisco, a Maritime Commission type (T2-SE-A2) tanker hull under Maritime Commission contract (MC hull 1831) at Marin Shipbuilding Co., Sausalito, CA.
  • Name changed to Tamalpais, date unknown
  • Launched, 29 October 1944
  • Acquired by the Navy and Commissioned USS Tamalpais (AO-96), 20 May 1945, LCDR. Archie J. Church USNR in command
  • During World War II USS Tamalpais was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater
  • Following World War II USS Tamalpais was assigned to Occupation and China service in the Far East for the following periods:

    Navy Occupation Service Medal

    China Service Medal (extended)
    2 September 1945 to 4 March 19468 March to 25 April 1946

  • Decommissioned, 21 June 1946, at Mobile AL.
  • Transferred to the Maritime Commission, 21 June 1946, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, Mobile, AL.
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 8 July 1946
  • Reacquired by the Navy, 10 March 1948, assigned to NTS (Navy Transportation Service) operated by a commercial contractor
  • Absorbed into the Military Sea Transportation Service (MSTS), 1 October 1949
  • Reinstated in the Naval Register, 28 April 1950 and placed in service as USNS Tamalpais (T-AO-96)
  • Placed out of service, date unknown
  • Transferred to the Maritime Administration (MARAD), 18 December 1957, for lay up in the National Defense ReservE Fleet, James River Group, Lee Hall, VA.
  • Transferred to the Department of the Army, 3 June 1966, for project "Powerfloat"
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 18 December 1967
  • Title transferred to the Maritime Administration by the Department of the Army, 9 September 1974
  • Final Disposition, sold for scrapping, 9 September 1974, to China Dismantled Trading Corp. for scrapping in Taiwan
    Displacement 5,782 t.(lt) 22,380 t.(fl)
    Length 523' 6"
    Beam 68'
    Draft 30' 10"
    Speed 15.1 kts (trial)
    Officers 22
    Enlisted 233
    one single 5"/38 cal dual purpose gun mount
    four single 3"/50 cal gun mounts
    four twin 20mm AA gun mounts
    Cargo Capacity 15,300DWT
    Oil 120,400 Bbls
    Gasoline 575,000 Gals
    Fuel Capacity NSFO 9,235 Bbls
    on General Electric turbo-electric engine
    two Babcock and Wilcox D-type boilers, 600psi 825°
    Ship's Service Generators
    two turbo-drive 400Kw 450V A.C.
    two turbo-drive 85Kw 120V D.C.
    two turbo-drive 55Kw 120V D.C.
    one turbo-drive 50Kw 450V A.C.
    single propeller, 10,000shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Source
    tamalps 52k Tamalpais (AO-96) on the builders ways at Marinship, Sausalito, CA., prior to her launching on 29 October 1944.
    Photo courtesy Auke Visser's Famous T - Tankers Pages.
    Robert Hurst
    Tamalpais 51k Tamalpais (AO-96) launching, 29 October 1944, at Marinship, Sausalito, CA.
    Photo courtesy navy memories
    Robert Hurst
    Tamalpais 120k USS Tamalpais (AO-96) at anchor, date and location unknown J. E. Leavelle RM3/c USNR V-6 USS Tamalpais 1944-46
    Tamalpais 58k USS Tamalpais (AO-96) at anchor, Hong Kong, BCC, March 1946 Mel Woodward USS Tamalpais
    Tamalpais 98k Ex-USS Tamalpais (AO-96) and ex-USS Kennebago (AO-81) at anchor near Nha Trang while serving as floating power stations in South Vietnam. These two vessels were transferred over to the United States Army sometime between 31 December 1965 and 30 June 1966. They remained in this role until at least May 1971.Image from Mascots of the 459th Signal Battalion, RVN 1970 Robert Hurst

    USS Tamalpais (AO-96)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01LCDR. Church, Archie Joseph, USNR20 May 1945 - 21 June 1946
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves

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

    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    MARAD Vessel History Database
    USS Tamalpais (AO-96)
    Back To The Navsource Photo Archives Main Page Back To The Service Force Ship Type Index Back To The Fleet Oiler (AO) Photo Index
    Comments, Suggestions, E-mail Webmaster.
    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History
    Last Updated 6 October 2016