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NavSource Online:
Section Patrol Craft Photo Archive

Left and center patch courtesy of Tommy Trampp, right patch courtesy of Wolfgang Heckler

Cythera (PY-26)
ex-Cythera (SP 575)

Civilian call sign (1919):
King - Watch - Tare - Mike

Sunk 2 May 1942

Patrol Yacht:

  • Built in 1907 as the yacht Agawa by Ramage and Ferguson Ltd., Leith, Scotland
  • Launched, 20 September 1906
  • Leased by the Navy 20 October 1917 and commissioned USS Cythera (SP 575) the same day
  • Decommissioned 17 March 1919
  • Returned to her owner 19 March 1919
  • Sold in 1938 to Mrs. William L. Harkness of New York
  • Reacquired by the Navy, 31 December 1941
  • Converted to a Patrol Yacht, PY-26, 28 February 1942
  • Placed in service, 3 March 1942
  • Torpedoed by the German submarine U-402 and sunk off North Carolina, 2 May 1942
  • Struck from the Navy Register 24 June 1942.


  • Displacement 1,000 t.
  • Length 215'
  • Beam 27' 6"
  • Draft 12'
  • Speed 15.5 kts.
  • Complement 113 (71 at time of sinking)
  • Armament: Three 3"/50 gun mounts and two machine guns
  • Propulsion: Two single ended boilers, one 1,500hp vertical triple expansion steam engine, one shaft.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    Yacht Agawa
    Agawa 27k
    Agawa 55k
    Yacht Cythera
    Cythera 56k Maunsel White
    Cythera 237k In port in 1917, possibly when she was inspected by the Third Naval District on 5 July 1917.
    U.S. Navy photo NH 99658
    Naval Historical Center
    USS Cythera (SP 575)
    Cythera 237k Jim Rogers
    Cythera 47k Maunsel White
    Cythera 237k Preparing to take USS Margaret (SP-527) in tow, during their passage from Bermuda to the Azores in November 1917. She towed Margaret for thirteen of the nineteen days of this voyage. Another converted yacht is visible in the center distance
    Photographed from on board Margaret by Raymond D. Borden
    U.S. Navy photo NH 55550
    Naval Historical Center
    Cythera 237k Just after her tow line to USS Margaret (SP-527) had parted, during their passage from Bermuda to the Azores in November 1917
    Photographed from on board Margaret by Raymond D. Borden.
    U.S. Navy photo NH 55551
    USS Cythera (PY 26)
    Cythera 237k Cythera in port, 2 March 1942
    Courtesy of D. M. McPherson, 1975
    U.S. Navy photo NH 83392
    Naval Historical Center
    Cythera 67k 11 March 2020
    Line drawing made in Art Class by R. J. Serra
    R. J. Serra

    Commanding Officers
    01LCDR Walter Gordon Roper, USN - USNA Class of 1898
    Awarded the Navy Cross (1918) - Retired as Captain
    20 October 1917
    02LCDR George Ernest Lake, USNRF - USNA Class of 1906
    Awarded the Navy Cross (1918)
    1918 - 17 August 1918
    03CAPT Raymond L. Jack, USCG - Awarded the Navy Cross (1918)17 August 1918 - 19 February 1919
    04LCDR Thomas Wright Rudderow, USNR - USS Rudderow (DE 224) was named in his honor3 March 1942 - 2 May 1942
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler, Ron Reeves and Joe Radigan

    View the Sector Patrol Vessel Cythera (PY 26)
    DANFS history entry located on the Haze Gray & Underway website
    Read the story
    by Robert P. Sables, LTC, MSC, AUS, Ret.
    Back to the Main Photo Index Back to the Section Patrol Craft (SP) Photo Index Back to the Patrol Craft/Gunboat/Submarine Chaser Ship Index Back to the Patrol Yacht (PY) Photo Index

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    This page created and maintained by Joseph M. Radigan
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