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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive

USS Rockdale (AK-208)

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

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

Alamosa Class Cargo Ship
  • Laid down, 15 January 1944, as a Maritime Commission type (C1-M-AV1) hull, under Maritime Commission contract (MC hull 2162), at Leathem D. Smith Shipbuilding Co., Sturgeon Bay, WI.
  • Launched, 1 October 1944
  • Acquired by the US Navy, 5 June 1945
  • Commissioned, USS Rockdale (AK-208), 26 June 1945, at Galveston, TX., LCDR. Robert F. Mendler, USNR, in command
  • During World War II USS Rockdale was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater
  • Following World War II USS Rockdale was assigned to Occupation service in the Far East from 17 October to 1 November 1945
  • Decommissioned, 22 March 1946, at Norfolk, VA.
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 12 April 1946
  • Returned to the Maritime Commission, 26 June 1946, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, James River, Lee Hall, VA.;
  • Sold, 11 February 1947, to Nerlof Andersens A/S, for $693,862.00
  • Sold, date and buyer unknown, renamed SS Thabor, reflagged France
  • Sold, date and buyer unknown, reflagged and renamed SS Hong Kong Pioneer
  • Final Disposition, sold to Taiwan shipbreakers, arrived at Kaohsiung, 9 April 1970 for scrapping
    Displacement 2,382 t.(lt) 7,450 t.(fl)
    Length 338' 6"
    Beam 50'
    Draft 21' 1"
    Speed 11.5 kts.
    Officers 15
    Enlisted 70
    Largest Boom Capacity 30 t.
    Cargo Capacity non refrigerated 177,515 Cu ft., 3,945 DWT
    one single 3"/50 cal dual purpose gun mount
    six single 20mm AA gun mounts
    Fuel Capacity Diesel 6,300 Bbls
    one Nordberg TSM6 Diesel engine
    two Diesel-drive 250Kw 120V/240V D.C. Ship's Service Generators
    single propeller, 1,700shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Source
    USS Rockdale (AK-208)
    34k Rockdale (AK-208) launching, 1 October 1944, at Leathem D. Smith Shipbuilding Co., Sturgeon Bay, WI.
    Bowling Green University - Historical Collection of the Great Lakes
    John Spivey
    Merchant Service France
    175k SS Thabor (ex- Rockdale (AK-208) taking on or discharging cargo in a Mediterranean port, date and location unknown. Gerhard Mueller-Debus
    408k SS Thabor underway in the Mediterranean Sea, date and location unknown. Gerhard Mueller-Debus
    314k SS Hong Kong Pioneer (ex-SS Thabor) underway, date and location unknown. Gerhard Mueller-Debus

    USS Rockdale (AK-208)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01LCDR. Mendler, Robert Frederick, USNR26 June 1945 - 22 March 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
    USS Rockdale (AK-208) War Diary, June 1945 to November 1945
    MARAD Vessel History Database
    Back To The Navsource Photo Archives Main Page 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 8 April 2022