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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive

USS Pleiades (AK-46)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - India - Bravo - Romeo
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - Combat Action Ribbon (Convoy SC-107, 1 - 4 November 1943) - American Defense Service Medal (with "A" device)
Bottom Row - American Campaign Medal (1) - Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaign Medal (1) - World War II Victory Medal

  • Built in 1939 as MV Mangalia for the Romanian State Maritime Service by Cantieri Navali Riuniti, Palermo, Italy
  • Taken over while lying idle at New York, 25 June 1941, by the U.S. Maritime Commission
  • Acquired by the US Navy 11 August 1941
  • Commissioned USS Pleiades (AK-46), 25 October 1941, CDR. Drayton Harrison in command
  • During World War II USS Pleiades was assigned to the American Theater and the Europe-Africa-Middle East Theater and participated in the following campaigns:

    American Campaign

    Europe-Africa-Middle East
    Convoy SC-107, 3 to 8 November 1942 Invasion of Southern France, 4 to 23 September 1944

  • Decommissioned, 21 November 1945, at Bayonne, N.J.
  • Returned to the Maritime Commission, 4 March 1946, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, James River Group, Lee Hall, VA., renamed MV Scepter
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 5 December 1946
  • USS Pleiades (AK-46) earned two battle stars for World War II service
  • Merchant Service
    Sold, 17 May 1966, to Cleveland Tankers, Inc, Cleveland, OH., Removed 14 June 1966, Renamed MV Scepter,
    To owner National Marine Service, Inc., Wilmington, DE. 1 December 1966
    Resold, 4 January 1967, to Charles Kurz Co., Wilmington, DE.
    Sold, 3 January 1968, to Union Carbide Corp, Sturgeon Bay, WI.
    Title returned to the Maritime Administration (MARAD), 12 January 1968
    Sold, 16 February 1968, to Sturgeon Bay Iron and Steel for scrapping, for $13,999.99, Removed 7 March 1968
  • Final Disposition, scrapping completed, 7 June 1968
    Displacement 8,185 t. (fl)
    Length 382' 2"
    Beam 50' 11"
    Draft 21' 9"
    Speed 13 kts.
    Officers 18
    Enlisted 187
    Cargo Capacity 4,300 DWT
    non-refrigerated 243,352 Cu ft.
    refrigerated 21,200 Cu ft.
    Largest Boom Capacity 3 t.
    two single 3"/50 cal gun mounts
    Fuel Capacity
    Diesel 5,060 Bbls
    one Fiat Diesel engine
    Ship's Service Generators
    two Diesel-drive 300Kw 120V/240V D.C.
    one Diesel-drive 100Kw 220V D.C.
    single propeller, 2,400shp
    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Source
    Pleiades 61k The ex-Romanian cargo ship MV Mangalia at Robins Dry Dock and Repair Co., Brooklyn, N.Y. on 23 August 1941 in preparation for conversion to USS Pleiades (AK-46).
    US National Archives RC-19-LCM, photo # 19-N-25105. A US Navy Bureau of Ships photo now in the collections of the US National Archives.
    Mike Green
    198k MV Mangalia at Robins Dry Dock and Repair Co., Brooklyn, N.Y. prior to the start of her conversion to USS Pleiades (AK-46).
    Photo by Robert Aitkens Potts
    David Wright
    Pleiades 90k USS Pleiades (AK-46) in New York harbor, probably on 24 October 1941, after conversion for US Navy service. No armament larger than machine guns is visible.
    US National Archives RG-19-LCM, photo # 19-N-25718. A US Navy Bureau of Ships photo now in the collections of the US National Archives.
    Mike Green
    Pleiades 84k USS Pleiades (AK-46) under way in the harbor at Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada in 1942.
    From the Nova Scotia Archives, HB Jefferson collection. For educational and non commercial use.
    John Chiquoine
    Pleiades 93k USS Pleiades (AK-46) in Broad Sound near the Boston Navy Yard, 18 March 1943. The ship now has two 3"/50 guns, one forward and one aft, and four 20mm guns at the corners of the amidships deckhouse.
    US National Archives, RG-19-LCM, Photo No.'s 19-N-41921, 19-N-41922, 19-N-41923 US Navy Bureau of Ships photos now in the collections of the US National Archives and US Naval History and Heritage Command photo No. NH 97494
    Mike Green
    NHHC NH 97494

    USS Pleiades (AK-46)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01CDR. Harrison, Drayton. USN (USNA 1918)25 October 1941 - ?
    02LCDR. Hoffman, John Donald, USNR18 July 1943 - ?
    03LT. Moiley Jr., Edward T., USNR1 June 1944 - ?
    04LT. Gjedsted, Robert James, USNR12 July 1945 - 21 November 1945
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves

    Crew Contact And Reunion Information
    U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation - Navy Log

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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last Updated 29 May 2020