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Submarine Chaser Photo Archive

PC-823



Call sign:
Nan - Yoke - Charlie - Xray


PC-823 served the Navies of the United States and South Korea.

PC-461 Class Submarine Chaser:

  • Laid down, 8 November 1943 by the Leathem D. Smith Shipbuilding Corp., Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin
  • Launched, 15 January 1944
  • Commissioned USS PC-823, 24 July 1944
  • Served in the western Atlantic during World War II, being assigned to air-sea rescue duties during at least some of that time
  • Decommissioned, 11 February 1946 and transferred to the Maritime Commission
  • Transferred 18 May 1948 to the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, Long Island, NY for use as a training ship and named Ensign Whitehead
  • Struck from the Naval Register in June 1948
  • In September 1949, the personnel of the Republic of Korea Navy donated funds to obtain their service's first significant warship. The former PC-823 was purchased and renamed Pak Tu San (PC-701). Provided with weapons
    by the U.S. Government, she arrived in at Chinhae Naval Base, South Korea shortly before the June 1950 outbreak of the Korean War. On the night of 25/26 June 1950, on the South Korean eastern coast, the South Korean
    PC-701 patrolled against infiltrators from the north. About twenty miles from the key port of Pusan its crew sighted an unidentified ship. The PC-701 challenged by flashing light and, receiving no response, turned its searchlight
    on the intruder. The light revealed a freighter with an estimated six hundred to one thousand soldiers crowded on her decks. Heavy machine guns were mounted aft on the freighter with which the crew quickly opened fire. The
    gunfire struck the PC-701's bridge killing the helmsman and seriously wounding the officer of the deck. The PC returned fire and in the running gun duel the freighter was sunk between Pusan and Tsushima Island. Except for the
    fortuitous position of the PC-701 and the fighting qualities of the craft's crew, the North Korean soldiers might have successfully landed at the vital Pusan. The poor state of combat readiness at the port could easily have led
    to its loss. In such an event, not even the small Allied toehold on the peninsula would have remained to support the U.S. counteroffensive in Korea. This single naval action may well have prevented the fall of South Korea. On 23
    December 1988, a memorial tower was dedicated to the ship in the Young Joo Dong, Joo Ang Park, Pusan City. which reads in part... "Baek Doo San ship PC-701 achieved one of the greatest victory in ROKN history by
    destroying a North Korean transporter that infiltrated into Pusan area to create confusion in the rear area. The North Korean transporter, destroyed by Bael San ship, was an armament ship (1000 tons) with 600 unconventional
    warfare personnel on board at the time. Baek Doo San ship was the first combat ship that we have purchased with donations from sailors of the ROKN. Due to this victory, North Korea's effort to attack rear area was failed
    and became a turning point to secure sea superiority over East, West and South Sea which led to a victory in Korean War. We now build the tower to propitate the soild of crew members that were kill in action during Korean
    War. Signed by ROKN CNO. Dated 23 December 1988." (The above was a Korean/English translation)
  • Decommissioned 21 August 1960 and scrapped.

    Specifications:

  • Displacement 280 t.(lt) , 450 t.(fl)
  • Length 173' 8"
  • Beam 23'
  • Draft 10' 10"
  • Speed 20 kts.
  • Complement 65
  • Armament: One 3"/50 dual purpose gun mount, one single 40mm gun mount; three 20mm guns, two rocket launchers, four depth charge projectiles, two depth charge tracks
  • Propulsion: Two 2,560bhp Hooven-Owen-Rentschler RB-99DA diesel engines (Serial No. 7333 and 7334), Westinghouse single reduction gear, two shafts.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    USS PC-823
    PC-823 112k . Historical Collections of the Great Lakes
    PC-823 29k Dress Ship for VJ Day. Bermuda, 14 August 1945. Elmer G. Muth QM2/c
    Pak Tu San (PC-701)
    PC-823 87k Seen here as South Korean Pak Tu San (PC-701) March 1950. Pak Tu San receiving her 3"/50 main gun at Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard, March 1950. Photograph released 17 March 1950 by 14th Naval District PIO, with the following caption:
    "GUNS INSTALLED ON KOREAN PATROL CRAFT .... The Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard on Wednesday started placing guns on the vacant mounts of the Korean Naval Patrol Craft 'Bak Dusan'. Scheduled for installation on the craft is one 3" anti-aircraft gun and six .50 caliber machine guns. The work at the local shipyard was authorized by the Secretary of Defense. Shown above are shipyard workers placing the 3" gun on the mount while Korean Naval Officers watch the operation. The 'Bak Dusan' which arrived in the Islands from New York on January 24, is en route to its homeland."
    U.S. Navy photo NH 97002
    Naval Historical Center
    PC-823 54k South Korean Navy photo from the 1958/1959 edition of Jane's Fighting Ships Robert Hurst

    There is no DANFS history available for PC-823
    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    Patrol Craft Sailors Association
    "PC Patrol Craft of World War II"
    by William J. Veigele, PhD, USNR, Ret. PC-793

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