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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive

USS Caswell (AKA-72)

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

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - China Service Medal (extended) - American Campaign Medal
Second Row - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1) - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia clasp)

Tolland Class Attack Cargo Ship:
  • Laid down in 1944 as a Maritime Commission type (C2-S-AJ3) hull, under Maritime Commission contract (MC hull 1402) at North Carolina Shipbuilding Corp, Wilmington, N.C.
  • Launched, 24 October 1944
  • Acquired by the Navy, 27 November 1944
  • Commissioned USS Caswell (AKA-72), 13 December 1944, LCDR. Patrick Michael Diffley, USNR, in command
  • During World War II Caswell was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater:
    TransRon Twenty, COMO. H. W. Graf USN (15);
    TransDiv Sixty, CAPT. A. T. Moen USN (18) and participated in the following campaign;

    Asiatic-Pacific Campaign
    Campaign and Dates
    Okinawa Gunto operation
    Assault and occupation of Okinawa Gunto, 1 to 9 April 1945

  • Following World War II USS Caswell was assigned to Occupation and China service in the Far East for the following periods:

    Navy Occupation Service Medal

    China Service Medal (extended)
    2 September to 12 October 194513 to 24 November 1945
    28 November to 8 December 194514 March to 3 April 1946

  • Decommissioned, 19 June 1946, at Norfolk, VA.
  • Returned to the Maritime Commission, 21 June 1946, for disposal
  • Struck from the Naval Register, date unknown
  • USS Caswell earned one battle star for World War II service
    Merchant Service
    Sold, 23 June 1947, to South Atlantic SS Line, renamed SS Southwind
    Sold in 1955 to the United States Lines
    Renamed SS American Surveyor, 18 May 1961
    Returned to the Maritime Administration, 7 June 1963, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, James River Group, Lee Hall, VA.
  • Final Disposition, sold, 10 August 1973, to Northern Metal Co., (for non-transportation use) presumed scrapped
    Displacement 8,635 t.(lt) 13,910 t.(fl), 14,160 (lim)
    Length 459' 2"
    Beam 63'
    Draft 26' 4"
    Speed 16.5 kts.
    Officers 62
    Enlisted 333
    Largest Boom Capacity 35 t.
    one single 5"/38 cal dual purpose gun mount
    four twin 40mm AA gun mounts
    sixteen single 20mm AA gun mounts
    fourteen LCVPs
    eight LCMs
    Cargo Capacity 5,275DWT
    non-refrigerated 380,000 Cu ft.
    Fuel Capacities
    NSFO 10,425 Bbls
    Diesel 805 Bbls
    one General Electric geared turbine
    two Foster and Wheeler header-type boilers, 450psi 750°
    double General Electric Main Reduction Gear
    three Ship's Service Generators 300Kw, 120V/240V D.C.
    single propeller, 6,000shp

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    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed
    USS Caswell (AKA-72)
    Caswell 105k USS Caswell (AKA-72) painted in Camouflage Measure 32, Design 6AO, circa 1944, location unknown.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command Photo # NH 91139. Courtesy of William H. Davis, 1980.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command
    Merchant Service South Atlantic Steamship Co. United States Lines
    Caswell 216k Ex-USS Caswell (AKA-72) under way while in merchant service as the South Atlantic SS Lines freighter SS Southwind, date and location unknown. Tommy Trampp
    Caswell 74k South Atlantic SS Lines freighter SS Southwind under way, date and location unknown. Gerhard Mueller-Debus
    Caswell 117k SS Southwind working cargo at Bremen, Germany circa late-1947/early-1948. The ship to the right is the United States Lines C-2 type freighter SS Rattler being towed to her berth. Photo is from a Bremen City promotion brochure distributed in the mid-Sixties. Gerhard Mueller-Debus
    Caswell 98k Ex-SS Southwind in United States Lines colors as SS American Surveyor under way, date and location unknown. Note her mainmasts have not yet been shortened to allow her to pass under the Manchester Canal bridges in the United Kingdom. Gerhard Mueller=Debus
    Caswell 345k SS American Surveyor in United States Lines colors, under way, location and date unknown, originally copyrighted by the British ship photo collector Alex Duncan (deceased). Note the shortened masts, which enabled her to pass beneath the bridges on the way to Manchester, U.K. Gerhard Mueller=Debus

    USS Caswell (AKA-72)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Crew Contact And Reunion Information
    U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation - Navy Log

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    Last Updated 24 November 2017