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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive

USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AG-162)
USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AO-112) (1949 - 1960)
Mission Capistrano (AO-112) (1947 - 1949)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Hotel - November - Mike
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from left to right
National Defense Service Medal

Mission Buenaventura Class Fleet Oiler:
  • Laid down, 29 February 1944, as SS Mission Capistrano a Maritime Commission type (T2-SE-A2) tanker hull (MC hull 1819) under a Maritime Commission contract at Marinship, Sausalito, CA.
  • Launched, 7 May 1944
  • Delivered to the Maritime Commission, 14 June 1944, for charter to Pacific Tankers Inc. for operation
  • Returned to the Maritime Commission, 20 April 1946, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, Mobile, AL.
  • Acquired by the Navy, 17 November 1947
  • Assigned to the Naval Transportation Service (NOTS), and placed in service as SS Mission Capistrano (AO-112)
  • Absorbed into the Military Sea Transportation Service (MSTS) 1 October 1949 and placed in service as USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AO-112)
  • Placed out of service, and struck from the Naval Register, 1 January 1955
  • Transferred to the Maritime Administration for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, Beaumont, TX.
  • Reacquired by the Navy, and reassigned to MSTS control, 5 July 1956
  • Converted at Todd Shipyard, New Orleans, LA., to Miscellaneous Auxiliary (Sound Testing Ship)
  • Reclassified (AG-162), 1 July 1960
  • Placed in service as USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AG-162), date unknown
  • Placed out of service and struck from the Naval Register, date unknown
  • Transferred to the Maritime Administration, 15 September 1970, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, James River Group
  • Sold for non-transportation purposes, 10 July 1972, to Boston Metals Co.
  • Resold, 15 March 1973, to Mission Drilling and Exploration Corp., converted to drilling rig, renamed SS Mission Exploration
  • Final Disposition, fate unknown
    AO Specifications:
    Displacement 5,532 t.(lt) 21,880 t.(fl)
    Length 523' 6"
    Beam 68'
    Draft 30' 10"
    Speed 15.1 kts (trial)
    52 CivMar
    17 US Navy Armed Guard
    one single 5"/38 dual purpose gun mount
    four single 3"/50 dual purpose gun mounts
    four twin 40mm AA 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
    one 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

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    Size Image Description Contributed
    USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AO-112)
    Mission Capistrano
    Mission San Juan Capistrano - Is a Spanish mission in San Juan Capistrano, Orange County, CA. Founded in 1776 in colonial Las Californias by Spanish Catholic missionaries of the Franciscan Order, it was named for Saint John of Capistrano. The Spanish Colonial Baroque style church was located in the Alta California province of the Viceroyalty of New Spain. The Mission was secularized by the Mexican government in 1833, and returned to the Roman Catholic Church by the American government in 1865. The mission was damaged over the years by a number of natural disasters, but restoration and renovation efforts date from around 1910.
    1921 view of the Mission San Juan Capistrano complex documents the restoration work that was already well underway by that time. The perimeter garden wall (including the ornate entranceway) and adjacent outbuilding are 1917 additions.
    Tommy Trampp
    Mission Capistrano 795k USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AO-112) underway in the Port of Long Beach, date unknown David Buell
    Mission Capistrano 1275k USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AO-112) docking/undocking at Berth 232, Port of Los Angeles, date unknown. David Buell
    Mission Capistrano 89k USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AO-112) moored pierside, Port of Los Angeles, Berth 232, date unknown. David Buell
    Mission Capistrano 44k USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AO-112), undergoing conversion to (AG-162), at Todd Shipyards New Orleans, LA., circa early 1960. Bill Valashinas
    USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AG-162)
    Mission Capistrano 57k USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AG-162) underway, date and location unknown.
    US Navy photo.
    Joe Radigan MACM USN Ret.
    Mission Capistrano 70k USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AG-162) at anchor, date and location unknown.
    US Navy photo from 1966/67 edition of "Jane's Fighting Ships".
    Robert Hurst
    Mission Capistrano 30k View of USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AG-162)'s ultra-high-powered sonar transducer array. MASSA web site
    Mission Capistrano 74k USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AG-162) loading an experimental atomic powered navigation beacon at Bayonne, N.J., 20 September 1962. The beacon was placed on the bed of the Atlantic Ocean, 2,500 fathoms of water, 700 miles off the coast of Jacksonville, FL. At right is Nick Renna, engineer for the builders, Martin Marietta.
    AP Wirephoto.
    Tommy Trampp
    Mission Capistrano 47k USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AG-162) at anchor, in 1962, location unknown. Photo courtesy of Mr W. H. Davis. Robert Hurst

    USNS Mission Capistrano (T-AO-112 / T-AG-112)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Crew Contact And Reunion Information
    U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation - Navy Log

    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    MARAD Vessel History Database
    National Register Eligibility Assessment
    Mission San Juan Capistrano
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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last Updated 12 February 2021