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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive

USS Arcturus (AKA-1)
ex
USS Arcturus (AK-18) (1940 - 1943)


International Radio Call Sign:
November - Charlie - Golf - Golf
NCGG
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons



Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - Combat Action Ribbon (retroactive) - China Service Medal (extended)
Second Row - American Defense Service Medal (with Fleet clasp) - American Campaign Medal - Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaign Medal (4)
Third Row - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1) - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia clasp)

Personnel Awards

Purple Heart, 8-10 September 1943 -Salerno Landing (7 KIA, 4 WIA)

Arcturus Class Attack Cargo Ship
  • Laid down, 26 July 1938, as MV Mormachawk, a Maritime Commission type (C2) hull, under Maritime Commission contract (MC hull 19) at Sun Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Co., Chester, PA. for Moore-McCormack Lines
  • Launched, 18 May 1938
  • Acquired by the Navy, 20 September 1940
  • Converted for Naval Service at Philadelphia Navy Yard, Philadelphia, PA
  • Commissioned USS Arcturus (AK-18), 26 October 1940, CDR. Russell C. Bartman USN in command
  • During World War II USS Arcturus was first assigned to the Europe-Africa-Middle East Theater and later to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater under the command of;
    TransRon Eleven, COMO. D.W. Loomis USN (18);
    TransDiv Thirty-Two, CAPT. C.W. Weitzel and participated in the following campaigns:

    Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaign

    Asiatic-Pacific Campaign
    North Africa occupation
    Fedhala, Morocco, 8 to 11 November 1942
    Okinawa Gunto operation
    Assault and occupation of Okinawa Gunto, (Hagushi beachhead), 1 to 14 April 1945
    Sicilian occupation
    Scoglitti, 9 to 15 July 1943
     
    Salerno landings
    Paestum, 9 to 21 September 1943
     
    Invasion of Southern France
    La Nartelle, 15 August to 25 September 1944
     

  • Reclassified Attack Cargo Ship (AKA-1), 1 February 1943
  • Following World War II USS Arcturus was assigned to Occupation and China service in the Far East for the following periods:

    Navy Occupation Service Medal

    China Service Medal (extended)
    2 to 28 September 194529 September to 11 October 1945
    8 to 11 November 194512 November to 6 December 1945

  • Decommissioned, 3 April 1946, at Portsmouth, VA.
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 5 June 1946
  • Transferred to the Maritime Commission, 2 July 1946, for disposal
  • Sold, 17 March 1947, by the Maritime Commission for commercial service to Johnson Line (Sweden), registered in Panama with Compania Naviera Puerta del Sur, renamed MV Star Arcturus and placed in service on Johnson Line's Far East route
  • Final Disposition, sold for scrapping in 1969, arrived at Kaohsiung, Taiwan, 17 May 1969 for dismantling.
  • USS Arcturus was awarded five battle stars for her World War II service
    Specifications:
    Displacement 7,480 t. (lt) 14,225 t. (fl.)
    Length 459' 1"
    Beam 63'
    Draft 25' 5"
    Speed 16.5 kts.
    Complement
    Officers 28
    Enlisted 239
    Largest Boom Capacity 30 t.
    Cargo Capacity 4,410 DWT
    Non-refrigerated 336,254 Cu. Ft.
    Refrigerated 18,395 Cu. Ft.
    Armament
    one single 5"/38 cal dual purpose gun mount
    four twin 40mm AA gun mounts
    eighteen single 20mm AA gun mounts
    Fuel Capacity Diesel 8,950 Bbls
    Propulsion
    one Sun Nordberg Diesel engine
    five Diesel-drive Ships's Service Generator, 230Kw 120V/240V D.C.
    single propeller, 6,000shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed
    By
    USS Arcturus (AK-18)
    Arcturus 53k USS Arcturus (AK-18) underway, date and location unknown. Her camouflage is Measure 12(modified). Terry Sanders
    USS Arcturus (AKA-1)
    Arcturus 94k USS Arcturus (AK-18) moored at Norfolk Navy Yard, 9 May 1943, with landing craft embarked.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # 19-N-47662, a US Navy Bureau of Ships photo now in the collections of the US Naval History and Heritage Command.
    Robert Hurst
    Merchant Service
    Arcturus 72k Ex-USS Arcturus (AK-18) underway while in merchant service as the Johnson Line MV Star Arcturus (Swedish owned). Gerhard Muller-Debus

    USS Arcturus (AK-18 / AKA-1)
    DANFS history entry located at the US Naval History and Heritage Command
    Commanding Officers
    01CDR. Bartman, Russell Clyde26 October 1940 - 15 September 1942AK-18
    02CDR. Hartley, Henry, USN15 September 1942 - 15 September 1942AK-18
    03CDR. McKinney, John Reid28 September 1942 - 21 July 1943AK-18
    04LCDR. Vischio, Attilo Anthony21 July 1943 - 1944AKA-1
    05CAPT. Wooldson, Charles Philip1944 - 11 November 1944AKA-1
    06CDR. Miller, Charles Horace Kendall11 November 1944 - 1945AKA-1
    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
    MARAD Vessel History Database
    Back To The Navsource Photo Archives Main Page Back To The Service Force Ship Type Index Back To the Amphibious Ship Type Index Back To The Cargo Ship (AK) Photo Index Back To The Amphibious Cargo Ship (AKA) 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 11 April 2014