Please report any broken links or trouble you might come across to the Webmaster. Please take a moment to let us know so that we can correct any problems and make your visit as enjoyable and as informative as possible.

NavSource Online:
Patrol Yacht Photo Archive

Nokomis (PY 6)
ex-SP-609



Call sign (1919):
Nan - Able - Mike - Mike

Patrol Yacht:

  • The first Nokomis was built in 1914 as Nokomis II by Pusey and Jones, Wilmington, DE
  • Purchased by the Navy 1 June 1917
  • Renamed Nokomis 19 December 1917
  • Commissioned USS Nokomis (SP 609), 3 December 1917
  • Reclassified as a Patrol Yacht PY-6 in 1920
  • Decommissioned 25 February 1921 at New York
  • Recommissioned in July 1921
  • Decommissioned 15 February 1938 at Norfolk, VA
  • Struck from the Navy Register 25 May 1938
  • Fate unknown.

    Specifications:

  • Displacement 1,265 t.
  • Length 243'
  • Beam 31' 10"
  • Draft 12' 10"
  • Speed 16 kts.
  • Complement 103
  • Armament: Four 3"/50 mounts and two machine guns
  • Propulsion: Two Babcock and Wilcox boilers, two 1,000hp vertical triple expansion steam engines, two shafts.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    Nokomis 90k
    Namesake:

    Nokomis is the name of Nanabozho's grandmother in the Ojibwe traditional stories and was the name of Hiawatha's grandmother in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's poem, The Song of Hiawatha, which is a re-telling of the Nanabozho stories. Nokomis is an important character in the poem, mentioned in the familiar lines:

    By the shores of Gitche Gumee,
    By the shining Big-Sea-Water,
    Stood the wigwam of Nokomis,
    Daughter of the moon Nokomis,
    Dark behind it rose the forest.

    According to the poem, From the full moon fell Nokomis/Fell the beautiful Nokomis. She bears a daughter, Wenonah. Despite Nokomis' warnings, Wenonah allows herself to be seduced by the West-Wind, Mudjekeewis, Till she bore a son in sorrow/Bore a son of love and sorrow/Thus was born my Hiawatha.

    Abandoned by the heartless Mudjekeewis, Wenonah dies in childbirth, leaving Hiawatha to be raised by Nokomis. The wrinkled old Nokomis/Nursed the little Hiawatha and educates him.

    In the Ojibwe language, nookomis means "my grandmother," thus portraying Nokomis of the poem and the aadizookaan (Ojibwe traditional stories) from a more personal point of view, akin to the traditional Ojibwa narrative styles

    Nokomis and Hiawatha feeding a squirrel

    Tommy Trampp
    Nokomis 36k
    Nokomis 62k
    Nokomis 61k
    Nokomis 41k
    Nokomis 70k
    Nokomis 232k
    Nokomis 78k U.S. Navy photo NH 44868 Naval History and Heritage Command
    Nokomis 108k Early 1920s, with USS SC-154 astern. Location is probably in Cuba or another place in the Caribbean area
    National Archives photo 80-G-1009391
    Nokomis 110k In port, circa the 1920s
    Courtesy of Rear Admiral Joseph M. Worthington, USN, (Retired), 1980
    U.S. Navy photo NH 90915
    Nokomis 86k Photographed circa 1925-1926, probably while on survey duty in Cuban waters
    Copied from the USS Nokomis Cuban Survey album
    Donation of Carter Rila, 1986
    U.S. Navy photo NH 101031
    Nokomis 98k At anchor, circa the 1920s or 1930s
    U.S. Navy photo NH 44867
    Nokomis 82k At anchor, circa the 1920s or 1930s
    U.S. Navy photo NH 44869
    Nokomis 77k Dressed with flags at Puerto Colombia, Colombia, 4 July 1935
    Courtesy of the U.S. Marine Corps Museum
    U.S. Navy photo NH 102903
    Nokomis 107k Anemometer and windgage tower on a Cuban beach, with USS Nokomis (PY-6) in the background, during survey operations conducted by the ship's crew
    Copied from the USS Nokomis Cuban Survey album
    Donation of Carter Rila, 1986
    U.S. Navy photo NH 101034
    Nokomis 78k Underway in French coastal waters, 1918-1919. This is probably USS Nokomis (SP-609), and may have been photographed from USS Felix Taussig (ID 2282)
    Donation of Dr. Mark Kulikowski, 2009
    U.S. Navy photo NH 106592
    Nokomis 84k

    - Awarded the Navy Cross (1918)
    Commanding Officers
    01CDR David French Boyd, USN - USNA Class of 1897
    Awarded the Navy Cross (1918) - Retired as Captain
    3 December 1917 - April 1918
    02CAPT(T) Thomas Marcus Molloy, USCG - Revenue Cutter Service School of Instruction Class of 1899
    Awarded the Navy Cross (1918) - Retired as Rear Admiral
    April 1918 - 30 January 1919
    03LT William Derrington, USN30 January 1919
    04LCDR Raleigh Corwin Williams, USN - USNA Class of 19091919
    05LCDR Franklin Paul Conger, USN - USNA Class of 1908
    Awarded the Navy Cross (1918) - Retired as Captain
    25 July 1921
    06CDR Royal Eason Ingersoll, USN - USNA Class of 1905
    Awarded the Navy Cross (1918) and the Navy Distinguished Service Medal (1945) - Retired as Admiral
    26 March 1924 - 7 September 1926
    07CDR Benjamin Dutton, Jr., USN - USNA Class of 19057 September 1926
    08CDR Harry Asher Badt, USN - USNA Class of 1908
    Awarded the Legion of Merit (1945) - Retired as Commodore
    1929 - 8 July 1930
    09CDR William Lewis Beck, USN - USNA Class of 1907
    Awarded the Navy Distinguished Service Medal (1919) and the Legion of Merit (1945) - Retired as Captain
    8 July 1930 - 7 July 1931
    10CDR Worrall Reed Carter, USN - USNA Class of 1908
    Awarded the Navy Distinguished Service Medal (1945) - Retired as Rear Admiral
    7 July 1931 - 1933
    11CDR Jere Hutchins Brooks, USN - USNA Class of 19071933 - June 1935
    12CDR John Holmes Magruder, Jr., USN - USNA Class of 1912
    Awarded the Legion of Merit (1945) - Retired as Commodore
    June 1935 - 1936
    13CDR Burton Witham Chippendale, USN - USNA Class of 19151936 - 15 February 1938
    Courtesy Joe Radigan and Wolfgang Hechler

    View the Nokomis (PY 6)
    DANFS History entry located on the Naval History and Heritage Command Website
    Back to the Main Photo Index Back to the Patrol Craft/Gunboat/Submarine Chaser Ship Index Back to the Patrol Yacht (PY) Photo Index

    Comments, Suggestions, E-mail Webmaster

    This page created and maintained by Joseph M. Radigan
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History