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NavSource Online: Mine Warfare Vessel Photo Archive

Cardinal (MSC[O] 4)

Call sign:
November - Yankee - Uniform - Foxtrot

Cardinal served the Navies of the United States and Brazil

YMS-1 Class Auxiliary Motor Minesweeper:

  • Laid down 27 October 1942 by Henry C. Grebe and Co., Chicago, IL
  • Launched 8 May 1943
  • Completed 31 July 1943
  • Commissioned USS YMS-179, 28 August 1943 at New Orleans, LA
  • Decommissioned 6 August 1946 at San Diego, CA
  • Reclassified as a Motor Minesweeper, AMS-4, 17 February 1947
  • Named Cardinal 18 February 1947
  • Assigned to Naval Reserve training in November 1948 at San Diego
  • Placed in service 1 December 1948
  • Recommissioned 22 September 1950
  • Reclassified as a Coastal Minesweeper (Old), MSC(O)-4, 7 February 1955
  • Decommissioned 18 November 1957 at Boston, MA
  • Struck from the Naval Register 1 November 1959
  • Transferred to Brazil 15 August 1960 and renamed Javari (M 11)
  • Scrapped in 1970.


  • Displacement 270 t.
  • Length 136'
  • Beam 24' 6"
  • Draft 8'
  • Speed 15 kts.
  • Complement 32
  • Armament: One 3"/50 dual purpose gun mount, two 20mm mounts, and two depth charge projectors
  • Propulsion: Two 880bhp General Motors 8-268A diesel engines, Snow and Knobstedt single reduction gear, two shafts.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    Cardinal 18k U.S. Navy photo -
    Cardinal (AMS 4)
    Cardinal 30k U.S. Navy photo -
    Peregrine 224k Right to left: Tutuila (ARG 4), Peregrine (AM 373), Fulmar (AMS 47), Hawk (AMS 17), Lapwing (AMS 48), and Cardinal.
    U.S. Navy photo from the August 1959 edition of All Hands magazine
    Joe Radigan
    Cardinal (MSC[O] 4)
    Cardinal 52k c. August 1955
    U.S. Naval Minewarfare School Yorktown, Virginia. Cardinal was a schoolship at that time.
    Stan Cochran
    Javari (M 11)
    Cardinal 76k c. 1962 Robert Hirst

    Commanding Officers
    01LTJG Samuel Joseph Schoenfeld, Jr., USN22 September 1950 - 10 May 1952
    02LT Donald Archie Schlarbaum, USN10 May 1952 - 21 January 1953
    03LT Donald Edward Anderson, USNR21 January 1953 - 13 August 1954
    04LT Thomas Martin Ward, Jr., USN - USNA Class of 1951
    Retired as Rear Admiral
    13 August 1954
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves

    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships History: Laid down at Henry C. Grebe & Company, Chicago, IL.; Launched 8 May 1943; Commissioned USS YMS 179 at New Orleans, La. 28 August 1943, Departing New Orleans 7 September 1943, she steamed to Norfolk and arrived 13 September for shakedown training in the Chesapeake Bay and final alterations in the Norfolk Navy Yard.  She got underway for Key West 13 October, assigned to Commander Gulf Sea Frontier at Naval Operating Base Key West. During the next six months, she was assigned as a convoy escort from Key West making countless voyages along the Gulf Coast with merchant ships and
    naval auxiliaries.

    She was sometimes diverted on escort voyages to Havana and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and frequently called at the Florida ports of Miami and Port Everglades. She departed Key West for the last time 16 April 1944 and joined a convoy at Havana for escort to Norfolk.

    She left the convoy off the coast of Virginia 21 April 1944 and entered the New York Navy Yard the next day for voyage repairs. YMS 179 arrived in Boston Harbor 17 May 1944 for duty under with Northern Group, Eastern Sea Frontier, and operated as a patrol ship off the Boston breakwater.  She entered the Norfolk Navy Yard 6 July 1944 to prepare for distant service and cleared Norfolk 24 July as part of a convoy which reached Mers-El-Kebir, Algeria, North Africa, 10 August.

    She patrolled off that harbor while awaiting the staging of a task force and got underway 20 August 1944 to support the invasion of Southern France. A unit of Mine Division 32, Squadron 11, Eighth Amphibious Force of the Eighth Fleet, she arrived in the Golfe de Frejus, off St. Raphael, France 25 August 1944.

    She was immediately engaged in sweeping minefields near the Harbor of Nice, France, when, on 14 September 1944, she opened fire to help silence a troublesome enemy battery which had been harassing operations.

    Her actions were answered by shells that fell so close that shrapnel showered her deck wounding one man.

    She continued her operations under heavy fire of shore batteries until they were completely silenced by the destroyer Edison (DD 439). For her support of the invasion of Southern France, she was awarded a battle star. Stopping at Toulon 22 September, she reached Palermo, Sicily, on the 24th.  For the next seven months she swept mines in the vicinity of Palermo and the port of Cagliari, Sardinia, and conducted brief rests at Naples, Leghorn, and Genoa, Italy.  She got underway from Palermo 15 June 1945 for return to the United States arriving New York 30 June 1945. While at New York, she underwent repairs until 16 August 1945 when she put to sea for the Pacific.

    She sailed by way of San Pedro, California, on a cruise to the Hawaiian, Marianas, and Philippine Islands.

    She returned to San Pedro 1 February 1946 for local operations.

    She was placed out of commission, in reserve, at San Diego, 6 August 1946.

    On 17 February 1947 her classification was changed from YMS 179 to AMS 4; and assigned the name Cardinal the following day. Cardinal (AMS-4) remained in reserve until 1 December 1948 when she was placed in the service of the Eleventh Naval District at San Diego for local training of Naval Reservists.

    She continued in this important service until officially recommissioned 22 September 1950.

    During the next three years she was employed in waters off the coast of California and the Hawaiian Islands.

    On 15 February 1954, her home port was changed to Charleston, South Carolina from which she would operate for the next three years. On 7 February 1955, her hull classification was changed from AMS 4 to MSC(O) 4.

    Her time was split between training in local waters, periodic tours of service in the Chesapeake Bay as a schoolship for students of the Naval Mine Warfare School of Yorktown, Virginia; refresher training cruises which included visits to the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, and the Dominican Republic; and upkeep periods in the Norfolk Navy Yard.

    This duty terminated 10 September 1957 when she stood out of Charleston Harbor for inactivation in the Boston Navy Yard.

    She arrived at Boston 14 September and was placed out of commission, in reserve, 18 November 1957.

    She remained inactive at Boston until stricken from the Naval Register 1 November 1959. Final Disposition, she was loaned to the Government of Brazil and renamed Javari (M 11) 15 August 1960. There she remained in service until she was scrapped by the Brazilians in 1970.

    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    Naval Minewarfare Association
    Association of Minemen

    Back To The Main Photo Index Back To the Mine Warfare Ship Photo Index Back to the Auxiliary Motor Minesweeper (YMS) Photo Index Back to the Motor Mineseeper (AMS) Photo Index Back to the Coastal Mineseeper (MSC) Photo Index

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    This page created by Gary P. Priolo and maintained by Joe Radigan
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