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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive

USS LST-491 (1943 - 1953)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Papa - Alpha - Xray
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - American Campaign Medal - Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaign Medal (2) - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1)
Bottom Row - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia clasp) - National Defense Service Medal

USNS T-LST-491 was transferred to the Philippine Navy, named BRP Lanao Del Sur (LT-503)
LST-491 Class Tank Landing Ship;
  • Lead ship of the LST-491 Class
  • Laid down, 29 July 1943, at Missouri Valley Bridge and Iron Co., Evansville, IN.
  • Launched, 23 September 1943
  • USS LST-491 was placed in reduced commission, 23 November 1943 and fully commissioned, 3 December 1943, LT. Robert E. Fahnestock, USNR, in command
  • During World War II USS LST-491 was first assigned to the Europe-Africa-Middle Theater and later to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater;
  • While assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater USS LST-491 came under the command of:
    LST Flotilla Thirty-Six, CAPT. D.F.J. Shea USN (23);
    LST Group One Hundred Seven, CDR. L. F. Teuscher USN (23);
    LST Division Two Hundred Fourteen and participated in the following campaigns:

    Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaign

    Asiatic-Pacific Campaign
    Invasion of Normandy, 6 to 25 June 1944 Okinawa Gunto operation
    Assault and occupation of Okinawa Gunto, 30 May to 18 June 1945
    Invasion of southern France, 15 August to 25 September 1944  

  • Following World War II USS LST-491 was assigned to Occupation service in the Far East for the following periods:

    Navy Occupation Service Medal
    15 to 25 October 1945
    25 November 1945 to 12 January 1946

  • Decommissioned, 12 January 1946 and transferred to Commander Naval Forces Far East (COMNAVFE) Shipping Control Authority (SCAJAP), redesignated Q010
  • Transferred to Military Sea Transportation Service (MSTS), 31 March 1952 and placed in service as USNS T-LST-491
  • Placed out of service, date unknown
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 30 June 1975
  • USS LST-491 earned three battle stars for World War II service
  • Sold to the Philippines Navy, 13 September 1976
  • Final Disposition, converted to a barge for commercial service some time after 1988
    1,625 t.(lt)
    4,080 t.(fl) (sea-going draft w/1675 ton load)
    2,366 t. (beaching displacement)
    Length 328' o.a.
    Beam 50'
    light 2' 4" fwd, 7' 6" aft
    sea-going 8' 3" fwd, 14' 1" aft
    landing 3' 11" fwd, 9' 10" aft (landing w/500 ton load)
    limiting 11' 2"
    maximum navigation 14' 1"
    Speed 11.6 kts. (trial)
    Endurance 24,000 miles @ 9kts. while displacing 3960 tons
    13 officers
    104 enlisted
    Troop Accommodations
    16 officers
    147 enlisted
    Boats 2 LCVP
    Cargo Capacity (varied with mission - payloads between 1600 and 1900 tons)
    Typical loads
    One Landing Craft Tank (LCT), tanks, wheeled and tracked vehicles, artillery, construction equipment and military supplies. A ramp or elevator forward allowed vehicles access to tank deck from main deck
    Additional capacity included sectional pontoons carried on each side of vessel amidships, to either build Rhino Barges or use as causeways. Married to the bow ramp, the causeways would enabled payloads to be delivered ashore from deeper water or where a beachhead would not allow the vessel to be grounded forward after ballasting
    Armament (varied with availability when each vessel was outfitted. Retro-fitting was accomplished throughout WWII. The ultimate armament design for United States vessels was
    2 - Twin 40MM gun mounts w/Mk. 51 directors
    4 - Single 40MM gun mounts
    12 single 20MM gun mounts
    Fuel Capacity
    Diesel 4,300 Bbls
    two General Motors 12-567A, 900hp Diesel engines
    single Falk Main Reduction Gears
    three Diesel-drive 100Kw 230V D.C. Ship's Service Generators
    two propellers, 1,700shp
    twin rudders

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    Size Image Description Contributed
    USS LST-491
    LST-491 218k USS LST-491 at Plymouth, England with a calculated list in preparation of launching LCT-554 after completing the North Atlantic crossing in convoy. Photo contributed by Russ Padden, Caption contributed by Dwight W. Blakeslee, MoMM1C USNR, USS LST-491 and USS LST-1089.
    USNS T-LST-491
    LST-491 73k USNS T-LST-491 at anchor, date and place unknown. © Richard Leonhardt
    LST-491 75k USNS T-LST-491 at anchor, date and place unknown. © Richard Leonhardt
    BRP Lanao Del Sur (LT-503)
    LST-491 68k Ex-LST-491 in Republic of the Philippines service as BRP Lanao Del Sur (LT-503) beached at Cavite, Luzon Island, Republic of the Philippines, awaiting sale, 12 July 1988. Edison Sy

    USS LST-491
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01LT. Fahnestock, Robert E., USNR3 December 1943 - October 1944
    02LT. Hemphill, Wylie Miller, USNROctober 1944 - 21 October 1945
    03LT. Knox, James W., USNR21 October 1945 - 12 January 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
    The USS LST Ship Memorial
    LST Homeport
    State LST Chapters
    United States LST Association
    Back To The Navsource Photo Archives Main Page Back To the Amphibious Ship Type Index Back To The Tank Landing Ship (LST) Photo Index
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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last Updated 28 November 2014