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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive

USS Wakefield (AP-21)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Whiskey - Delta - Golf
NWDG
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons



Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - Combat Action Ribbon (retroactive, 30 January 1942, Singapore)
Second Row - American Defense Service Medal (with bronze "A" clasp) - American Campaign Medal - Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaign Medal
Third Row - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal - World War II Victory Medal - Philippines Defense Medal

Personnel Awards

Purple Heart (5-KIA, 9-WIA, Singapore, 30 January 1942)

USS Wakefield (AP-21) was manned by the US Coast Guard during World War II
Wakefield Class Transport:
  • Laid down, 6 December 1930, at New York Shipbuilding Co, Camden, N.J., as SS Manhattan for the United States Lines
  • Launched, 5 December 1931
  • Acquired by the Navy, 14 June 1941, at New York, N.Y.
  • Commissioned USS Wakefield (AP-21), 15 June 1941, CDR. W. N. Derby, USCG, in command
  • During World War II USS Wakefield operated in both the Europe-Africa-Middle East and Asiatic-Pacific Theaters
  • Decommissioned due to fire damage in September 1942
  • Recommissioned, 10 February 1943, at Boston, MA., with a Coast Guard crew
  • Decommissioned, 16 June 1946, at New York
  • Laid up as part of the Atlantic Reserve Fleet, at New York in 1954
  • Declared surplus, 7 June 1957, and transferred to the Maritime Administration (MARAD), for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, Hudson River Group
  • Struck from the Naval Register in 1959
  • Final Disposition, sold for scrapping by MARAD, 5 March 1965, to Union Minerals & Alloys Corp.
    Specifications:
    Displacement 22,559 t.(lt) 33,560 t.(fl)
    Length 705'
    Beam 86'
    Draft 30' 9"
    Speed 21.5 kts.
    Complement
    Officers 46
    Enlisted 888
    Troop Capacity
    Officers 361
    Enlisted 6,659
    Largest Boom Capacity 25t.
    Armament
    one single 5"/38 cal dual purpose gun mount
    three single 3"/50 cal dual purpose gun mounts
    four quad 40mm AA gun mounts
    eight .50 cal machine guns
    Fuel Capacities
    NSFO 31,400 Bbls
    Diesel 300 Bbls
    Propulsion
    two New York Shipbuilding steam turbines
    six Babcock and Wilcox A-type boilers 400psi 695°
    single Falk Main Reduction Gears
    four turbo-drive 500Kw 120V/240V D.C. Ship's Service Generators
    two propellers, 30,000shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Source
    Commercial Service
    Wakefield 195k United Sates Lines passenger liner SS Manhattan departing New York Shipbuilding on Saturday, 23 July 1932 for her first trial trip. The Gailey Davis Red Star tug Newcastle is on the port bow with Hercules behind her. Manhattan was billed as the largest merchant vessel built at that time. Ron Reeves
    Wakefield 564k Pre-war advertisement for trans-Atlantic travel aboard SS Manhattan Tommy Trampp
    Wakefield 74k SS Manhattan in commercial service for the United States Lines prior to World War II. German tobacco card series C, Saba-Schiffsbilder cigarettes. Tommy Trampp
    Wakefield 56k
    Wakefield 264k Post card image of SS Manhattan in commercial service for the United States Lines prior to World War II. Tommy Trampp
    Wakefield 220k SS Manhattan in commercial service for the United States Lines prior to World War II. Photo from "Passenger Liners of the World Since 1893" (1970) by Nicholas T. Cairis. Tommy Trampp
    USS Wakefield (AP-21)
    Wakefield 32k USS Wakefield (AP-21) underway, 11 May 1942, location unknown. Wakefield is wearing camouflage scheme 12R.
    US Navy photo.
    Joe Radigan MACM USN Ret.
    Wakefield 45k USS Wakefield (AP-21) on fire at sea in the Atlantic Ocean, circa 3-12 September 1942. USS Wakefield was US bound carrying 850 passengers, mostly American construction workers when the fire broke out.
    US Navy photo from Acme. Photo from the collections of the MacArthur Museum of Arkansas Military History
    Bill Gonyo
    Wakefield 153k USS Wakefield (AP-21) stopped as clouds of smoke pour out of the burning American transport. The fires were eventually extinguished and she was towed to Halifax, NS. Photo from "United States Destroyer Operations in World War II," by Theodore Roscoe. Robert Hurst
    Wakefield 87k USS Wakefield (AP-21)'s civilian construction workers crowd the decks aft waiting to abandon ship. Note cargo nets have been placed over the side. Photo from "United States Destroyer Operations in World War II," by Theodore Roscoe. Robert Hurst
    Wakefield 60k USS Wakefield (AP-21) under tow from Halifax, Nova Scotia, 2 October 1942, after being virtually destroyed by fire in September 1942. The unblemished mottling of her paint can be seen on the forward hull and on her after end.
    US National Archives photo # 80-G-16505, a US Navy photo now in the collections of the US National Archives.
    Robert Hurst
    Wakefield 11k USS Wakefield (AP-21) underway, date and location unknown. Robert Hurst
    Wakefield 107k USS Wakefield (AP-21) "COAST GUARD TRANSPORT HEADS INTO BOSTON. . . . . . .The Coast Guard-manned troop transport, USS WAKEFIELD, arrived in Boston this morning loaded down with more than 8,100 fighting Yanks, from Naples, Italy. Also aboard the transport were Brig. Gen. Raymond E. S. Williamson, of Falmouth, Mass., of the 91st Infantry Division, seven American Red Cross; and six UNRRA members, one of whom was Miss Barbara Johnston of Morson, Mass. The passenger list also included seven members of OWI, one of the OSS, and under heavy guard, six Japanese Diplomats whose status as former representatives to the European Axis was not revealed."; 22 August 1945.
    US Coast Guard photo from the collections of the Office of the Coast Guard Historian.
    Mike Green
    Wakefield 94k USS Wakefield (AP-21) arriving at Boston, 22 August 1945.
    US Coast Guard photo from the collections of the Office of the Coast Guard Historian.
    Mike Green
    Wakefield 98k USS Wakefield (AP-21) underway, date and location unknown.
    US Navy photo # No. V4-W215-1.
    Robert Hurst
    Wakefield 49k USS Wakefield (AP-21) underway, date and location unknown.
    US Navy photo.
    Robert Hurst
    Wakefield 80k USS Wakefield (AP-21) underway, date and location unknown. Capt Jerry Mason, USN
    Wakefield 77k USS Wakefield (AP-21) underway, date and location unknown. Capt Jerry Mason, USN
    Wakefield 81k USS Wakefield (AP-21) underway silhouetted against the setting sun. The photo was taken after USS Wakefield was recommissioned.
    US Navy photo from "All Hands" magazine, August 1945 issue.
    CAPT. Jerry Mason, USN (Ret)
    Wakefield 59k USS Wakefield (AP-21) underway, location unknown, 1945
    US Navy photo.
    Courtesy, Chuck Ulrich, coordinator/historian AP Transport Group
    Wakefield 162k USS Wakefield (AP-21) at sea. Two crewmen of Scottish decent play the bagpipes while entertaining the troops, circa 1942-45. Tommy Trampp
    Wakefield 375k USS Wakefield (AP-21) crew photo, 7 April 1946. William John Gill is in the close up, lower photo, last Marine on the left. William Michael Gill in honor of his father William John Gill USMC USS Wakefield
    Wakefield 219k

    USS Wakefield (AP-21)
    DANFS history entry located at the US Naval History and Heritage Command
    Commanding Officers
    01CDR. Derby, Wilfred Neville ;RADM (USCG)15 June 1941 - 17 August 1941
    02CDR. Scammell, William Kirk ;RADM (USCG)17 August 1941 -15 May 1942
    03CDR. Bradbury, Harold Gardner (USCG) :RADM15 May 1942 - 29 September 1942
     Decommissioned29 September 1942 - 10 February 1944
    04CAPT. Raney, Roy Livingston (USCG) :VADM10 February 1944 - January 1945
    05CAPT. Thiele, Edward H. (USCG) :RADMJanuary 1945 - April 1946
    06CDR. Grey, James R. (USCG)April 1946 - 16 June 1946
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves

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

    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    U.S. Coast Guard Historian's Office - Wakefield AP-21
    Bomb Damage, January 30, 1942, Singapore
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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last Updated 6 December 2013