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NavSource Online:
Section Patrol Craft Photo Archive

ex-Seneca (SP 427)

Patrol Yacht:

  • Built in 1888 at Boston, MA
  • Acquired by the Navy 7 May 1917
  • Commissioned USS Seneca (SP 427), 18 July 1917
  • Renamed SP-427 to avoid confusion with the Lighthouse ship Seneca
  • Decommissioned 2 January 1919
  • Struck from the Navy list 6 January 1919 and returned to her owner.
  • Fate unknown.


  • Displacement 157 t.
  • Length 150'
  • Beam 20"
  • Draft 10' 6"
  • Speed 18 kts.
  • Complement 33
  • Armament: Two 6-pounders.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    Seneca 122k Halftone reproduction of a pre-World War I photograph, showing her decks crowded with people
    U.S. Navy photo NH 99483
    Naval Historical Center
    Seneca 154k In New York Harbor, near the Statue of Liberty, February 1919. Judging by the fenders at her bow and along her sides, she may be operating as a tug. This small ex-yacht maybe USS SP-427 (formerly USS Seneca), which was based at nearby Tomkinsville, on Staten Island, and was quite similar in appearance. Seneca was decommissioned in early January 1919, more than a month before this photograph was taken. It is possible the date of the photograph is incorrect, or that this vessel, if it is really Seneca, may have already been back in civilian employment. it will be noted that she apparently does not display an 'SP' number on her bow
    Naval Historical Center photo NH 53708-A
    Robert Hurst

    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships History: Seneca (SP-427), a steam yacht built in Boston Mass., in 1888, was acquired by the Navy from the Johnson Lighterage Co., on 7 May 1917, and commissioned on 18 July 1917, Boatswain Thomas Winant, USNRF, in command.

    Seneca (later known simply as SP-427 served as a section minesweeper based at Tomkinsville, Staten Island, N.Y. during World War I. The ship was decommissioned on 2 January 1919; her name was struck from the Navy list on 6 January 1919; and she was returned to her owner the same day.

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