Please report any broken links or trouble you might come across to the Webmaster. Please take a moment to let us know so that we can correct any problems and make your visit as enjoyable and as informative as possible.

NavSource Online: Mine Warfare Vessel Photo Archive

Courtesy of Al Grazevich

Towhee (AGS 28)

Call sign:
November - India - Golf - Hotel

Auk Class Minesweeper:

  • Laid down 21 March 1944 by American Shipbuilding Co., Cleveland, Ohio
  • Launched, 6 January 1945
  • Commissioned USS Towhee (AM-388), 18 May 1945
  • Decommissioned, March 1954 at Orange, TX
  • Laid up in the Atlantic Reserve Fleet, Orange Group
  • Reclassified as a Fleet Minesweeper (Steel Hull), MSF-388, 7 February 1955
  • Converted to a Survey Ship, AGS-28 at Philadelphia, PA
  • Recommissioned 1 April 1964
  • Decommissioned, 30 April 1969
  • Custody transferred to Inactive Ship Facility Vallejo, CA
  • Struck from the Naval Register 1 May 1969
  • Sold for scrap 6 March 1970 to Learner Co. of Oakland, CA.


  • Displacement 890 t.
  • Length 221' 1"
  • Beam 32' 2"
  • Draft 10' 9"
  • Speed 18.1 kts.
  • Complement 117
  • Armament: One 3"/50 dual purpose gun mount, two single 40mm gun mounts, six single 20mm gun mounts, one depth charge thrower (hedgehogs), four depth charge projectiles (k-guns), and
    two depth charge tracks
  • Propulsion: Two 3,532shp General Motors 12-278A diesel electric drive engines, Westinghouse single reduction gear, two shafts.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    Towhee (AM 388)
    Towhee 29k Namesake: Towhee - A North American bird of the finch family Tommy Trampp
    Photo added 9 April 2020
    Towhee 236k 18 May 1945
    Commissioning crew photo
    Chief Electricians Mate Marvin Jack Lettvin, front row, third from left
    John Neville
    Tanager 14k c. 1953
    Marseilles, France
    Left to right: Staff (AM 114), Towhee, Tanager (AM 385) and Tercel (AM 386)
    Bob Gerety, AM-385 crew member
    Bob's Minesweeper Site
    Towhee 60k Joe Radigan
    Towhee 109k Valletta, Malta Richard Miller, BMCS, USNR, Ret.
    Towhee (AGS 28)
    Towhee 77k Office of the Oceanographer of the Navy
    Towhee 273k Roger Brooks, PNCS, USN, Retired
    Crew member 31 December 1964 - 7 January 1966
    Towhee 93k U.S. Navy photo from the June 1968 edition of All Hands magazine Joe Radigan
    Towhee 91k U.S. Navy photo from the February 1969 edition of All Hands magazine

    Commanding Officers
    PCULT Howard Leslie Rich, Jr., USN18 March 1945 - 18 August 1945
    01LT Thomas Norman Humble, USNR18 August 1945 - 19 September 1945
    02LCDR Francis Monroe Linderman, USN19 September 1945 - 14 February 1946
    03LCDR William Jelfs Henning, USN - USNA Class of 194114 February 1946 - 1 July 1946
    04LCDR Richard Galt Zimermann, USN - USNA Class of 1943
    Awarded the Silver Star (1945) and the Legion of Merit (1972) - Retired as Captain
    May 1947 - November 1948
    05LT John Patton Rimer, USN1951
    06LCDR Malcolm Roy "Black Jack" Massie, USN1955 - 1956
    07LCDR Charles Richard Irby, USN1 April 1964
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler, Ron Reeves, R. A. Moody and Joe Radigan

    View the Towhee (MSF 388)
    DANFS history entry located on the Naval History and Heritage Command website
    Back to the Main Photo Index Back to the Mine Warfare Ship Photo Index Back to the Fleet Minesweeper (MSF) Photo Index Back to the Auxiliary Ship Photo Index Back to the Survey Ship (AGS) Photo Index

    Comments, Suggestions, E-mail Webmaster

    This page created by Gary P. Priolo and maintained by Joe Radigan
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History