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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive


Contributed by Mike Smolinski

USNS Thor (T-ARC-4)
ex
USS Thor (ARC-4) (1956 - 1973)
USS Vanadis (AKA-49) (1945 - 1956)

Thor International Radio Call Sign:
November - Lima - Kilo - Tango
NLKT
Vanadis International Radio Call Sign:
November - Tango - Oscar - Whiskey
NTOW
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons


Precedence of awards is from left to right
Top Row - Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation (2)
Bottom Row - American Campaign Medal - World War II Victory Medal - National Defense Service Medal (2)


Artemis Class Attack Cargo Ship:
  • Laid down, 18 April 1945, as a Maritime Commission type (S4-SE2-BE1), hull under Maritime Commission contract (MC hull 1910) at Welsh-Kaiser Co. Providence, R.I.
  • Launched, 8 June 1945
  • Commissioned USS Vanadis (AKA-49), 9 July 1945, LCDR. E. B. Williams in command
  • Decommissioned, 27 March 1946, at Boston MA.
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 5 June 1946
  • Returned to the Maritime Commission for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, James River, Fort Eustis, VA.
  • Reacquired, 14 April 1955, by the US Navy for conversion to a Cable Repair Ship
  • Recommissioned USS Thor (ARC-4), 3 January 1956, CDR. Robert H. Thomas in command
  • Decommissioned, 2 July 1973, at Portsmouth, VA. and simultaneously placed in service with the Military Sealift Command (MSC) as USNS Thor (T-ARC-4)
  • Placed out of service and returned to the Maritime Administration in April 1974, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, Suisun Bay, Benecia, CA.
  • Final Disposition, sold for scrapping, 22 September 1977
    AKA Specifications:
    Displacement 4,087 t.(lt) 7,080 t(fl)
    Length 426'
    Beam 58'
    Draft 16' (lim)
    Speed 16.9 kts.
    Complement
    Officers 27
    Enlisted 276
    Armament
    one single 5"/38 cal dual purpose gun mount
    four twin 40mm AA gun mounts
    ten single 20mm AA gun mounts
    Cargo capacity 980 DWT
    non-refrigerated 110,000 Cu. ft.
    Boats
    one LCP(L)
    twelve LCVPs
    two LCMs
    Troop Capacity 264
    Fuel Capacities
    NSFO 9,540 Bbls
    Diesel 365 Bbls
    Propulsion
    two Westinghouse turbo-electric engines
    two Wickes boilers, 450psi 750°
    Ship's Service Generators
    two turbo-drive 100Kw 120V/240V D.C.
    one turbo-drive 150Kw 450V A.C.
    two turbo-drive 250Kw 450V A.C.
    twin propellers, 6,000shp.

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    Size Image Description Contributed
    By
    USS Thor (ARC-4)
    Thor 79k USS Thor (ARC-4), date and location unknown. Ramon Jackson
    Thor 133k USS Thor (ARC-4), date and location unknown.
    US Navy photo
    Joe Radigan MACM USN Ret
    Thor 68k USS Thor (ARC-4) and USS Opportune (ARS-41) working together, date and location unknown.
    US Navy photo from "All Hands" magazine February 1954.
    Joe Radigan MACM USN Ret
    Thor 78k USS Thor (ARC-4) underway, circa 1957, location unknown.
    US Navy photo from "Jane's Fighting Ships" 1958-59 Edition.
    Robert Hurst
    Thor 35k USS Thor (ARC-4) anchored off the northern tip of Grand Turk Island in November 1959 Photo by William Maki ETR2
    Thor 67k USS Thor (ARC-4) anchored off the northern tip of Grand Turk Island in November 1959 Photo by William Maki ETR2
    Thor 31k USS Thor (ARC-4) port side boat deck looking forward. Portsmouth, N.H., fall 1959 Photo by William Maki ETR2
    Thor 264k Aerial view of Boston Navy Yard, looking Southwest, 1 April 1960. Photo taken by a helicopter from Naval Air Station South Weymouth. Ships and Craft present:
    LocationShip (Hull No.)Ship Type
    Pier 11USS Wasp (CVS-18)Aircraft Carrier
    Dry Dock 5ARD-16Floating Dry Dock
    In ARD-16YFND-23Dry Dock Companion Craft
    Pier 10Empty 
    Pier 9EUSS Macon (CA-132)
    YD-196
    Heavy Cruiser
    Floating Crane
    Pier 9WUSS Hugh Purvis (DD-709)Destroyer
    Pier 8EUSS Thor (ARC-4)
    YPD-24
    Cable Layer
    Floating Pile Driver
    Pier 7EUSS Springfield (CLG-7)Guided Missile Light Cruiser
    Pier 7WEmpty 
    Pier 6EUSS Perry (DD-844)Destroyer
    Pier 6WUSS Mitscher (DL-2)Destroyer Leader
    Pier 5EUSS Albany (CG-10)Guided Missile Heavy Cruiser
    Pier 5WUSS Yosemite (AD-19)Destroyer Tender
    Pier 4EEmpty 
    Pier 4WUSS Skywatcher (AGR-3)Radar Picket Ship
    U.S. Navy photo, Boston NHP Collection, NPS Cat. No. BOSTS-10111)
    Stephen P. Carlson, Preservation Specialist, Boston NHP, Charlestown Navy Yard, Boston, MA 02129
    Thor 69k USS Thor (ARC-4) underway in May 1962 after removal of her AKA quadruped mast, location unknown. Her sister, USS Aeolus (ARC-3) had lost her quadruped mast by May 1961.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 82142
    Mike Green
    Thor 101k Starboard bow view of USS Thor (ARC-4) underway in Hampton Roads, VA., 31 May 1964.
    US Navy photo # USN-1107777 by G.J. Clark PH2 USN from the archives of the from the US Naval Photographic Center, Naval Station, Washington, D.C.
    Robert M. Cieri
    Thor 80k USS Thor (ARC-4) underway, circa 1964, location unknown. US Navy photo. Robert Hurst
    Thor 84k USS Thor (ARC-4) moored pierside at Naval Station Guantanamo Bay Cuba, circa April 1971. Photo by Steve Bolgar USS Thor 1971-73.

    USS Vanadis (AKA-49) / USS Thor (ARC-4) / USNS Thor (T-ARC-4)
    DANFS history entry located at the US Naval History and Heritage Command
    Commanding Officers
    01LCDR. Williams, E. B.9 July 1945 - ? AKA-47
     Decommissioned27 March 1946 - 3 January 1956  
    02CDR. Thomas, Robert Hampson3 January 1956 - ?ARC-4
    03CDR. Alley, Lester Leno datesARC-4
    04CDR. Mooney, Rodney Thomasno datesARC-4
    05CDR. Pendleton, J. Robert1962ARC-4
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves

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

    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    MARAD Vessel History Database

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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last Updated 6 June 2014