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NavSource Online: Mine Warfare Vessel Photo Archive

Courtesy of Mike Smolinski

Terror (MMF 5)

Call sign:
November - Echo - Foxtrot - Victor

Terror Class Minelayer:

  • The third Terror was laid down 3 September 1940 at Philadelphia Navy Yard, Philadelphia, PA
  • Launched 6 June 1941
  • Commissioned USS Terror (CM-5), 15 July 1942
  • Decommissioned in July 1947 at Charleston, SC
  • Placed in service, in reserve, during the Korean War
  • Reclassified as a Fleet Minelayer, MM-5, 7 February 1955
  • Designation for Fleet Minelayer changed to MMF-5 in October 1955
  • Decommissioned 6 August 1956
  • Struck from the Navy Register 1 November 1970
  • Sold for scrap in November 1971 to the Union Minerals and Alloys Corp. of New York, NY.


  • Displacement 5,875 t.
  • Length 454' 10"
  • Beam 60' 2'
  • Draft 19' 7"
  • Speed 20.3 kts.
  • Compliment 481
  • Armament: Four 5"/38 dual purpose gun mounts, and 16 - 1.1" mounts
    Later replaced 1.1" mounts with four quad 40mm gun mounts and fourteen 20mm guns
  • Propulsion: Two sets of 11,000shp General Electric double-reduction geared steam turbines, two shafts.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    Terror (CM 5)
    Terror 443k Terror a few days before her launching on 6 June1941 at Philadelphia Navy Yard
    International News photo
    David Buell
    Terror 345k 6 June 1941
    Launching Program
    Ron Reeves
    Terror 345k Christening by Mrs. Ralph Bard, wife of the Assistant Secretary of the Navy S. Dale Hargrave
    Terror 430k 6 June 1941
    Philadelphia, PA
    Mrs. Harlan J. Bushfield (left), wife of the Governor of South Dakota, who will christen the battleship USS South Dakota (BB-57) at the New York Shipbuilding Company, Camden, New Jersey on June 7, was on hand to get some pointers from Mrs. Ralph A. Bard (right), wife of the Assistant Secretary of the Navy, who christened the Terror, the first mine layer built for the Navy, at the launching ceremonies today at the Philadelphia Navy Yard
    Photo by Acme Newspictures
    Bill Gonyo
    Terror 246k Sliding down the ways S. Dale Hargrave
    Terror 76k Launch souvenir pin Tommy Trampp
    Terror 174k Under construction at Philadelphia's Pier 4 during the week of 7 March 1942. The transport across the pier is Orizaba [AP 24]
    Life magazine photos by George Strock
    John Chiquoine
    Terror 198k
    USS Terror (CM 5)
    Terror 114k Loading Mk VI mines at Yorktown, Virginia, for the Casablanca operation circa October 1942
    Naval History and Heritage Command photo NR&L(M) 35192 from
    Original photo: Joe Radigan
    Replacement photo: Robert Hurst
    Terror 63k USS Terror website
    Terror 90k The imposing Terror, in the Delaware River on 24 August 1942, carries a Mk 4 radar atop the director for the Mk 37 fire-control system but no search radars; a crow's nest surmounts the foremast
    U.S. Navy photo
    Joe Radigan
    Terror 705k 24 August 1942
    Broadside view off the Philadelphia Navy Yard
    U.S. Navy photo 1304-42
    David Buell
    Terror 780k 24 August 1942
    Overhead view off the Philadelphia Navy Yard
    U.S. Navy photo 1317-42
    Terror 106k Near the Philadelphia Navy Yard on 24 August 1942 following completion of sea trials
    National Archives photo 19-N-34288 from
    Robert Hurst
    Terror 154k At the Philadelphia Navy Yard, either just before sea trials or during her post-sea trial availability between 25 August and 16 September 1942. The transport in the background is USS Monticello (AP-61) which completed conversion on 10 September 1942
    Photo from
    Terror 80k c. 1943.
    U.S. Navy photo
    Joe Radigan
    Terror 164k c. 1943
    U.S. Navy photo from the 1943/1944 edition of Janes Fighting Ships
    Robert Hurst
    Terror 175k Arriving at Pearl Harbor in May 1945 after being damaged by a Kamikaze on 1 May 1945 off Okinawa. The Kamikaze struck in the dark area under the after stack and mainmast and cost the ship 171 casualties including 48 dead and missing. The deflectors just under the funnel caps were fitted in September 1944
    Photo from
    Original photo: USS Terror Website
    Replacement photo: Robert Hurst
    Terror 92k Mare Island, CA on 9 August 1945 after her Mare Island refit, the Terror displays her final wartime configuration. Two additional quadruple 40-mm antiaircraft mounts joined the four already aboard, and the twin 40-mm mount just forward of the bridge was retained. Two single Army-pattern 40-mm guns were removed, the ten single 20-mm guns were exchanged for eight twin mountings, and antiaircraft firecontrol was augmented through the addition of two Mk 29 radar-equipped Mk 57 directors
    Near Mare Island, CA on 9 August 1945 after repairs to Kamikaze damage. Alterations included the fitting of a twin 40 mm mount forward of the bridge and a radar platform at the top of the foremast
    Photo 5864-45 from
    Original photo: Joe Radigan
    Replacement photo: Robert Hurst
    Terror 93k Near Mare Island, CA on 9 August 1945 after repairs to Kamikaze damage
    National Archives photo 19-N-88289 and 19-N-88288 from
    Robert Hurst
    Terror 89k
    Terror 136k c. September/October 1945
    USS YMS-402 alongside USS Terror starboard quarter during Japanese mainland occupation duty
    Life magazine photo by George Strock
    National Archives photo 80-G-355201
    Rick Davis and John Chiquoine
    Photos added 2 October 2021
    Terror 170k Cropped from above photo
    Terror 135k 4 November 1945
    Sasebo, Japan
    Flagship ComMinePac
    USS Terror Website
    Terror 356k c. 16 - 23 January 1946
    Pearl Harbor, HI
    Ships present are: Bennington (CV-20) moored across the channel at NAS Ford Island, LCS(L)(3)-43 underway in bound in the channel, Troilus (AKA-46) moored astern of Cape Gloucester (CVE-109), LST-1079 moored astern of LST-1070, Terror, LST-459 with LCT-1015 secured to her main deck, astern of LST-863. Moored forward of LST-863 are an unidentified Minesweeper and two Rescue and Salvage ships. The next pier has two unidentified ships, possibly AKs, the Survey Ship Sumner (AGS-5), and two unidentified Minesweepers. LST-737 moored astern of LST-45 moored astern of numerous Minesweepers and possibly Shipley Bay (CVE-85)
    BuAir photo 496019 from CINCPAC, Released 23 January 1946
    David Buell
    Terror 366k
    Terror 426k Original photo: National Archives photo 80-G-411681
    Replacement photo: c. 1950
    Original photo: Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships
    Robert Hurst
    Terror 68 Laid up awaiting disposal Richard Miller, BMCS, USNR, Ret.

    Commanding Officers
    01CDR Howard Wesley Fitch, USN - USNA Class of 1919
    Awarded the Legion of Merit (1945) - Retired as Captain
    15 July 1942 - 30 April 1944
    02CDR Horrace William Blakeslee, USN30 April 1944 - 15 June 1945
    03CAPT Richard Tenney Spofford, USN - Awarded the Legion of Merit (1951)15 June 1945 - 31 December 1946
    04LCDR Henry dePeyster Teller, USN31 December 1946 - 24 November 1947
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler, Ron Reeves and Joe Radigan

    View the Terror (MMF 5)
    DANFS history entry located on the Naval History and Heritage Command website
    Additional Resources and Websites of Interest
    USS Terror (CM-5)
    Back To The Main Photo Index Back To the Mine Warfare Ship Photo Index Back to the Fleet Minelayer (MMF) Photo Index

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