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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive

USS Caelum (AK-106)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Hotel - Lima - Tango
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom left to right
Top Row - China Service Medal (extended) - American Campaign Medal
Bottom Row - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1) - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia clasp)

Crater Class Cargo Ship:
  • Laid down as SS Wyatt Earp, a Maritime Commission type (EC2-S-C1) hull, under Maritime Commission contract (MCE hull 1860) at California Shipbuilding Corp., Wilmington, CA.
  • Launched, 30 June 1943
  • Acquired by the US Navy, 10 August 1943
  • Commissioned, USS Caelum (AK-106), 22 October 1943, LCDR. Edgar Johnson in command
  • During World War II USS Caelum was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater and participated in the following campaign:

    Asiatic-Pacific Campaign
    Campaign and Dates
    Marshall Islands operation
    Occupation of Kwajalein and Majuro, 3 to 8 February 1944
  • Following World War II USS Caelum was assigned to Occupation and China service in the Far East for the following periods:

    Navy Occupation Service Medal

    China Service Medal (extended)
    10 September to 6 November 19451 to 26 April 1946
    9 February to 29 March 1946 

  • Decommissioned, 30 July 1946, at Seattle, WA.
  • Delivered to the Maritime Commission, 31 July 1946, for disposal, the National Defense Reserve Fleet, Olympia, WA.
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 15 August 1946
  • Final Disposition, sold for scrapping, 19 October 1961, to Hyman-Michaels Co., removed, 26 October 1961, scrapping completed, 2 January 1962, at National Steel and Shipbuilding Co (NASSCO), Terminal Island, CA.
  • USS Caelum earned one battle star for World War II service
    Displacement 4,023 t.(lt) 14,550 t.(fl)
    Length 441' 6"
    Beam 56' 11"
    Draft 28' 4"
    Speed 12.5 kts. (trial)
    Officers 25
    Enlisted 196
    Largest Boom Capacity 50 t.
    Cargo Capacity 7,750 DWT
    non-refrigerated 417,330 Cu ft.
    one single 5"/38 dual purpose gun mount
    one single 3"/50 dual purpose gun mount
    two single 40mm AA gun mounts
    six single 20mm AA gun mounts
    Fuel Capacity
    NSFO 7,285 Bbls
    one Joshua-Hendy vertical triple expansion reciprocating steam engine
    two Combustion Engineering boilers, 220psi 450°
    three turbo-drive 60Kw, 120V D.C. Ship's Service Generators
    single propeller, 2,500shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed
    Caelum 251k USS Caelum (AK-106) under way probably near San Francisco Bay, date unknown.
    US Navy Bureau of Ships photo.
    Ed Zajkowski
    Caelum 154k USS Caelum (AK-106) under way circa 1945, location unknown.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command, Photo # NH 84657. Courtesy of D. M. McPherson, 1976.
    Mike Green

    USS Caelum (AK-106)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01LCDR. Johnson, Edgar22 October 1943 - 23 December 1944
    02LCDR. Dineen, James John23 December 1944 - 30 July 1946
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves

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

    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    MARAD Vessel History Database
    Back To The Main Photo Index Back To The Service Force Ship Type Index Back To The Cargo Ship (AK) Photo Index
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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History
    Last Updated 16 December 2016