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NavSource Online: Mine Warfare Vessel Photo Archive

Kingfisher (AT[O] 135)

Call sign:
Nan - Zebra - Mike - William


Call sign (1939):
Negat - Afirm - Love - Prep

ex-Minesweeper No. 25

Call sign (1919):
George - Tare - Sail - Love

Lapwing Class Minesweeper:

  • Laid down 12 December 1917 by the Puget Sound Navy Yard, Bremerton, WA
  • Launched 15 February 1919
  • Commissioned USS Kingfisher, Minesweeper No. 25, 27 May 1919
  • Designated AM-25, 17 July 1920
  • Reclassified as a Fleet Tug, AT-135, 1 June 1942
  • Reclassified as a Fleet Tug (Old), AT(O)-135, 15 May 1944
  • Decommissioned 6 February 1946 and laid up in the Pacific Reserve Fleet
  • Transferred to the Maritime Commission 3 June 1947 and sold the same day to M. E. Baker of Suisun Bay, CA
  • Fate unknown.


  • Displacement 950 t.
    1944 - 1,350 t.
  • Length 187' 10"
  • Beam 35' 6"
  • Draft 8' 10"
    1944 - 13' 1"
  • Speed 14 kts.
    1944 - 12.3 kts.
  • Complement 72
    1944 - 75
  • Armament: Two 3" mounts
    1944 - Two 3"/50 dual purpose mounts
  • Propulsion: Two Babcock and Wilcox boilers, one triple expansion reciprocating steam engine, one shaft
    1944 - Two 200psi saturated steam Babcock and Wilcox boilers, one 1,400shp Harlan and Hollingsworth vertical triple expansion reciprocating steam engine.

    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    USS Kingfisher (Minesweeper No. 25)
    Kingfisher 23k

    Kingfisher - One of Europe's most beautiful birds conspicuous for its blue-green back and rich chestnut breast

    Tommy Trampp
    Kingfisher 303k Photo from "Sweeping the North Sea Mine Barrage" by the U.S. Navy North Sea Minesweeping Detachment Joe Radigan
    Lapwing 118k Review of the Atlantic Fleet Minesweeping Squadron, November 1919. Ships of the squadron anchored in the Hudson River, off New York City, while being reviewed by Secretary of the Navy Josephus Daniels on 24 November 1919, following their return to the United States after taking part in clearing the North Sea mine barrage. Identifiable ships present include (left column, from front to rear): USS Turkey (Minesweeper No. 13); USS Quail (Minesweeper No. 15) with SC-354 alongside; USS Lark (Minesweeper No. 21) with SC-208 alongside; Swan (Minesweeper No. 34) with SC-356 alongside; and USS Flamingo (Minesweeper No. 32) with an unidentified submarine chaser alongside. (right column, from front to rear): USS Thrush (Minesweeper No. 18}; Two unidentified minesweepers, one of which is probably USS Lapwing (Minesweeper No. 1); Kingfisher; and, in no particular order, tugs Patapsco and Patuxent. USS SC-245 is at the far right, passing between the two anchored columns
    U.S. Navy photo NH 44904
    Naval Historical Center
    USS Kingfisher (AM 25)
    Kingfisher 63k c. Early 1920s
    "Sweetpea" towing an airplane
    LT Gary P. Priolo, USN, Ret.
    Kingfisher 147k Naval History and Heritage Command photos NH 102 and NH 667 Mike Green
    Kingfisher 286k
    Kingfisher 272k 6 August 1920
    Norfolk Navy Yard, Portsmouth, VA
    Moored inboard of an unidentified Minesweeper
    National Archives photo ID 52559543
    David Upton
    Photo added 2 May 2021

    Commanding Officers
    01LTJG Charles L. Greene, USN27 May 1918 - 1 September 1919
    02LT Earl Swisher, USN1 September 1919
    03LT Henry Aloysius Stanley, USN29 May 1923
    04LT Cyril Alfred Rumble, USN1924 - 23 February 1925
    05LT Alva Henderson, USN23 February 1925
    06LT William LeRoy Messmer, USN - Retired as Rear Admiral1936
    07LCDR Clifford Bragg Schiano, USN1938 - November 1940
    08LT R. L. Ward, USN11 March 1943
    09ENS August B. Billig, USN - Retired as Commander11 March 1943 - 24 August 1943
    10LTJG Jack T. Moritz, USN24 August 1943
    11LTJG W. W. Collins, USNR1945
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler, Ron Reeves, Joe Radigan and Bruce Billig

    View the Kingfisher (AM 25)
    DANFS history entry located on the Naval History and Heritage Command website
    Additional Resources and Websites of Interest
    National Association of Fleet Tug Sailors
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