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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive

USS Gemsbok (IX-117)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Juliet - India - Charlie
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - American Campaign Medal
Bottom Row - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1) - World War II Victory Medal - Philippines Liberation Medal

Armadillo Class Mobile Station Tanker:
  • Laid down in 1943 as SS Carl R. Gray, a Maritime Commission type (Z-ET1-S-C3) hull, under Maritime Commission contract (MCE hull 1906), at California Shipbuilding Co., Wilmington, CA.
  • Launched, 9 November 1943
  • Acquired by the US Navy, 3 December 1943
  • Commissioned, USS Gemsbok (IX-117), 3 December 1943, at San Pedro, CA., CDR. A. H. Kooistra, USNR, in command
  • During World War II USS Gemsbok was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater and participated in the following campaign;
    Asiatic-Pacific Campaigns
    Campaign and Dates
    Marshall Islands operation
    Occupation of Kwajalein and Majuro Atolls, 2 to 8 February 1944
    Occupation of Eniwetok Atoll, 17 February to 2 March 1944

  • Decommissioned, 30 April 1946, at Norfolk, VA.
  • Transferred to the Maritime Commission, 11 May 1946, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, James River Group. Lee Hall, VA., named reverted to SS Carl R. Gray
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 8 May 1946
  • Gemsbok earned one battle star for World War II service
  • Merchant Service
    Sold in 1948 to Maris Transportation System Inc., 20 May 1948, renamed SS Alpha
    Sold by Maris Transportation Systems Inc., to Strathmore Shipping Co., 13 March 1951, renamed SS Strathbay
    Converted in 1953 to 7,246g.t dry cargo ship.
    Sold by Strathmore Shipping Co., to Columbia Steamship Co., in January 1955, renamed SS Columbia Trader
    Sold by Columbia Steamship Co. to Standard SS Corp. in September 1955
    Sold by Standard SS Corp. to West Coast SS. Co. in March 1959
    Sold by West Coast SS Co. to Saxis Steamship Co., 14 August 1963, renamed SS Pilot Rock
    Returned to the Maritime Administration under the MARAD Exchange program, 26 February 1965
  • Final Disposition, sold for scrapping, 10 March 1966, to American Ship Dismantlers, Inc.,
    Displacement 14,500 t. (limiting)
    Length 441' 6"
    Beam 56' 11"
    Draft 28' 4" (limiting)
    Speed 11.8 kts. (trial)
    Cargo Capacity 8,500 DWT
    Oil 63,000 Bbls
    officers 12
    enlisted 98
    one single 5"/38 dual purpose gun mount
    one single 3"/50 dual purpose gun mount
    eight single 20mm AA gun mounts
    Fuel Capacity NSFO 13,900 Bbls
    one vertical triple expansion reciprocating steam engine
    two Babcock & Wilcox boilers, 220psi 450°
    three recip-drive 20Kw 120V D.C. Ship's Service Generators
    single propeller, 2,500 shp

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    USS Gemsbok (IX-117)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Crew Contact And Reunion Information
    U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation - Navy Log

    Additional Web Sites of Interest
    MARAD Vessel History Data Base
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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last Updated 28 March 2014