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NavSource Online: Mine Warfare Vessel Photo Archive

Aroostook (AK 44)

Call sign:
Nan - Easy - Nan - Roger


Call sign:
George - Quack - Rush - Sail

Aroostook Class Minelayer:

  • Laid down at William Cramp and Sons Shipyard, Philadelphia, PA as the passenger steamer SS Bunker Hill
  • Launched 26 March 1907
  • Acquired by the Navy 12 November 1917
  • Renamed Aroostook 15 November 1917
  • Commissioned USS Aroostook (ID 1256), 7 December 1917 at the Boston Navy Yard
    (1921 edition of Ships' Data, U.S. Naval Vessels lists commissioning date as 7 January 1918)
  • Converted to a Mine Planter in 1918
  • Reclassified as a Minelayer, CM-3, 17 February 1920
  • Decommissioned 10 March 1931 at Puget Sound Navy Yard
  • Reclassified as a Cargo Ship, AK-44, 20 May 1941
  • Struck from the Navy Register 5 February 1943, transferred to the Maritime Commission and laid up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, Suisun Bay, Benecia, CA under her former name Bunker Hill
  • Sold in 1947 to the Seven Seas Trading Company of Hollywood, CA, converted to a floating casino and renamed Lux
  • Sold for scrap in October 1947.


  • Displacement 3,800 t.
  • Length 395'
  • Length between perpendiculars 375'
  • Beam 52' 2'
  • Draft 16'
  • Depth of hold 31' 7"
  • Speed 20 kts.
  • Complement 313
    1921 - 346
  • Armament: One 5"/51 mount, two 3"/50 mounts and two .30 cal. Colt machine guns
    1921 - One 3'/50 dual purpose mount and two machine guns
  • Propulsion: Eight single ended cylinderical boilers, two 3,500ihp verticle triple-expansion steam engines, two shafts.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    SS Bunker Hill
    Aroostook 102k Probably at the Cramp shipyard, Philadelphia, when first completed in 1907.
    U.S. Navy photo NH 66052
    Naval Historical Center
    Bunker Hill/Aroostook 186k c. 1908
    At New York in her original configuration as a fast coastal package freighter with minimal superstructure. Cargo was handled through the large openings in the sides
    Photo from Shipscribe
    Mike Green
    Aroostook 47k Possibly photographed in about November 1917, when she was acquired by the Navy
    U.S. Navy photo NH 90614
    Naval Historical Center
    Aroostook (ID 1256)
    Isabel 87k USS Yacona (SP-617) at the Boston Navy Yard, Massachusetts, circa December 1917, painted in pattern camouflage. Yacht Isabel, then being prepared for service as USS Isabel (SP-521), is on the other side of the pier from Yacona. Steamers in the background are Aroostook (ID 1256), formerly S.S. Bunker Hill and Massachusetts, which became Shawmut (ID 1255).
    U.S. Navy photo NH 102576
    Naval Historical Center
    Aroostook 133k Aroostook in the early stages of conversion at the Boston Navy Yard on 4 April 1918. The ship has been stripped down to her bare hull and her boiler uptakes, stacks and ventilators. Her sister Shawmut is behind her in similar condition
    National Archives photo
    Mike Green
    Aroostook 86k At the Boston Navy Yard, Massachusetts, 7 June 1918, following conversion to a mine layer. Her sister ship, USS Shawmut (ID 1255), is in the background.
    U.S. Navy photo NH 57692
    Naval Historical Center
    USS Aroostook (ID 1256)
    Aroostook 80k Photographed in 1918.
    U.S. Navy photo NH 57693
    Naval Historical Center
    Quinnebaug 71k U.S. Navy minelayers proceeding to sea in two columns, in Area Number 2 of the North Sea, September 1918. Ships in the column at left are (from front to rear): Roanoke, Housatonic, Quinnebaug and Baltimore. Ships in column at right are (from front to rear): Canonicus (out of picture, to right), Canandaigua, Aroostook and Saranac.
    Photograph from the Army Signal Corps Collection in the U.S. National Archives.
    U.S. Army Signal Corps photo 111-SC-43563
    Aroostook 111k American minelayers underway on 20 September 1918. They include; on the right: USS Roanoke (ID-1695), USS Housatonic (ID-1697), USS Quinniberg (ID-1687), USS Baltimore (CM-1). On the left: USS Canonicus (ID-1696), USS Canidaiqua (ID-1694), USS Aroostock (CM-3), USS Saranac (ID-1702)
    Imperial War Museum photo No. IWM(Q 20254) from American First World War Official Exchange Collection
    Mike Green
    Aroostook 277k Trepassey Bay, Newfoundland, Canada
    This picture was most probably taken in May 1919 on occasion of the transatlantic flight of the U.S. Navy Curtiss NC seaplanes. The still camouflaged oiler in the foreground would then be USS Hisko (ID-1953) with the destroyer USS Upshur (DD-144), and another one hidden behind Hisko. Behind the oiler is Aroostook, which operated as a seplane tender for the four NC flying boats. The last ship visible is a destroyer tender
    Photo from the George Grantham Bain collection, Library of Congress photo ggbain.28818
    Robert Hurst
    Aroostook 78k Seaplane NC-3 taxies past Aroostook in Trepassey Bay, Newfoundland, 15 May 1919. NC-1 is moored at left. Aroostook served as the planes' tender during their May 1919 trans-Atlantic
    flight attempt
    U.S. Navy photo NH 95777
    Naval Historical Center
    USS Aroostook (CM 3)
    Aroostook 76k Photos from the San Diego Air and Space Museum Ron Reeves
    Aroostook 95k
    Aroostook 33k
    Aroostook 52k
    Aroostook 98k In a harbor, circa the early 1920s.
    Courtesy of SKC Joseph L. Aguillard, USNR, 1969
    U.S. Navy photo NH 69311
    Naval Historical Center
    Aroostook 86k At anchor, circa the early 1920s.
    Collection of Lieutenant Oscar W. Levy, USN (Supply Corps), Retired.
    U.S. Navy photo NH 99613
    Aroostook 84k Underway at sea, with a Martin SC-2 torpedo plane on her after deck, during the later 1920s.
    Collection of Lieutenant Oscar W. Levy, USN (Supply Corps)-Retired.
    U.S. Navy photo NH 94166
    Aroostook 139k In a harbor during the 1920s, with a PN-type patrol seaplane on her after deck and another moored off her port side
    U.S. Navy photo NH 99617
    Aroostook 95k 30 December 1920
    Photo from the San Diego Air and Space Museum
    Ron Reeves
    Aroostook 376k Aerial view of the Aroostook in July 1921. The ship is supporting bombing tests conducted by Navy and Army aircraft off the Virginia Capes
    U.S. Navy and Marine Corps Museum/Naval Aviation Museum photo 2008.104.001.239
    Mike Green
    Aroostook 89k In dry dock at the Mare Island Navy Yard, California, 15 November 1923
    Donation of Mrs. Kelly Green, 1974
    U.S. Navy photo NH 82901
    Naval Historical Center
    Aroostook 283k c. November 1923
    In the Mare Island channel
    U.S. Navy photo
    Darryl Baker
    Aroostook 101k At Coco Solo, Panama Canal Zone, 12 January 1924.
    Donation of Mrs. Kelly Green, 1974
    U.S. Navy photo NH 82794
    Naval Historical Center
    Aroostook 67k USS Shenandoah (ZR-1) moored at Naval Air Station North Island, San Diego, California, in October 1924. Aroostook is tied up to the Air Station pier in the upper right, with a storeship (Arctic, Boreas or Yukon) moored in the channel nearby.
    Donation of Lieutenant Gustave J. Freret, USN (Retired), 1972.
    U.S. Navy photo NH 80473
    Aroostook 79k Dressed with flags, February 1926.
    U.S. Navy photo NH 57694
    Aroostook 102k Ship's Christmas menu for 1926, featuring photographs of the ship and of her Commanding Officer, Commander R.W. Cabaniss, USN
    Collection of Lieutenant Oscar W. Levy, USN (Supply Corps), Retired.
    U.S. Navy photo NH 99612
    Aroostook 107k Underway circa 1927, with her crew's bedding airing along the rails forward and amidships.
    Photographed by Gustave J. Freret, USN (Retired), 1972.
    U.S. Navy photo NH 81276
    Aroostook 109k Anchored in the Hudson River, off New York City, on 2 May 1927. The torpedo plane on her deck (probably a Martin SC-2) is marked "2-T-4" on its upper wing.
    U.S. Navy photo NH 81276
    Aroostook 96k In harbor during the 1920s or early 1930s.
    Courtesy of Donald M. McPherson, 1969
    U.S. Navy photo NH 67506
    Aroostook 73k U.S. Navy photo 19-N-4351 Hazegray & Underway Website
    Aroostook 222k Underway in February 1929
    Naval Historical Center photo NH 99618
    Robert Hurst
    Aroostook (AK 44)
    Aroostook 74k At the Puget Sound Navy Yard, Bremerton, Washington, 18 June 1941, while being dismantled in preparation for an abortive attempt to return her to active Navy service. She had been laid up since March 1931.
    Photograph from the Bureau of Ships Collection in the U.S. National Archives.
    National Archives photos 19-N-24267, 19-N-24272 and 19-N-24273
    Naval Historical Center
    Aroostook 110k
    Aroostook 88k

    Commanding Officers
    01CDR James Harvey Tomb, USN - USNA Class of 1899
    Awarded the Navy Distinguished Service Medal - Retired as Captain
    7 December 1917
    02CDR Henry Croskey Mustin, USN - USNA Class of 189622 October 1919
    03CAPT Harry Varnum Butler, Jr., USN - USNA Class of 1895
    Retired as Rear Admiral
    31 October 1921 - 10 June 1922
    04CDR William Henry Allen, USN10 June 1922 - 1923
    05CDR Robert Wright Cabaniss, USN - USNA Class of 19061926 - 31 March 1927
    06LCDR Kenneth Floyd-Jones, USN - USNA Class of 19171 March 1930 - 10 March 1931
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler, Ron Reeves and Joe Radigan

    View the Aroostook (CM-3)
    DANFS History entry located on the Haze Gray & Underway Website
    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    Naval Minewarfare Association
    Association of Minemen
    Back To The Main Photo Index Back to the Numbered Civilian Vessels (ID) Photo Index Back To the Mine Warfare Ship Photo Index Back To The Minelayer (CM) Photo Index Back to the Auxiliary Ship Index Back To The Cargo Ship (AK) Photo Index

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    This page created by Gary P. Priolo and maintained by Joseph M. Radigan
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