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NavSource Online:
Motor Torpedo Boat Photo Archive


78' Higgins Motor Torpedo Boat:

  • Laid down 3 May 1945 by Higgins Industries, New Orleans, LA
  • Launched 23 June 1945
  • Completed 26 October 1945
  • Reclassified as a Small Boat 16 November 1945
  • After the war ended PT-796 was used in the Key West/Miami area for experimental purposes
  • The "Tail Ender" was retired from service in the late 1950s
  • Presently on display at Battleship Cove Naval Museum in Fall River, Massachusetts.


  • Displacement 48 t.
  • Length 78'
  • Beam 20' 8"
  • Draft 4'
  • Speed 41 kts.
  • Complement 11
  • Armament: One 40mm mount, four 21" torpedoes, two twin .50 cal. machine guns, one 37mm mount, eight Mk 6-300lb. depth charges and two 20mm mount
  • Propulsion: Three 1,500shp Packard W-14 M2500 gasoline engines, three shafts.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    PT-796 68k "Tail Ender" .
    PT-796 125k 20 January 1961
    Washington, DC
    Painted as PT-109 for President John F. Kennedy's inauguration parade. It is seen here passing the reviewing stand.
    PT-796 107k 15 July 1970
    Memphis, TN
    Photo caption:

    PT-796, last PT still in operation churns up the Wolf River at Memphis Tuesday [14 July], following a trip up the mississippi from New Orleans. Donated by the Navy, the boat will become part of a PT boat museum in Memphis. Tied atop her mast is a broom, symbol of mission accomplished.
    Associated press Wirephoto res31920mbr
    Joe Radigan
    PT-796 56k At Battleship Cove Naval Museum, Fall River, MA
    Photo courtesy of USS Massachusetts Memorial Committee, 1985
    Robert Hurst
    PT-796 137k At Battleship Cove Naval Museum, Fall River, MA .

    There is no DANFS history available for PT-796
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    This page created and maintained by Joseph M. Radigan
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