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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive

Contributed by Mike Smolinski

Contributed by Al Grazevich

USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Tango - Quebec - Delta
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - Navy Unit Commendation (4) - Navy Battle "E" Ribbon (2) - Navy Expeditionary Medal (Cuba, Lebanon)
Second Row - National Defense Service Medal - Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (Cuba, Dominican Republic, Lebanon (1 Jul 58-1 Nov 58), Grenada, - Lebanon (1 Jun-1 Aug 84) - Humanitarian Service Medal (Beirut Lebanon Evacuation)

Thomaston Class Dock Landing Ship:
  • Laid down, 17 August 1953, at Ingalls Shipbuilding Corp., Pascagoula, MS.
  • Launched, 16 July 1954
  • Commissioned USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30), 24 January 1955, CDR. H. Marvin-Smith in command
  • Decommissioned, 5 September 1984
  • Custody transferred, 7 September 1989, to the Maritime Administration for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, James River, Lee Hall, VA.
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 24 February 1992
  • Withdrawn from the James River Reserve Fleet, 15 June 1994, by the US Naval Inactive Ships Maintenance Facility, Portsmouth, VA. (NISMF), for stripping
  • Returned, 23 August 1984, to the National Defense Reserve Fleet, James River, Lee Hall, VA.
  • Final Disposition, sold, date unknown, for scrapping at Peck Recycling, Richmond, VA., for $268.707.00, withdrawn from the James River Reserve Fleet, 6 May 1996
    Displacement 8,899 t.(lt), 11,525 t(fl)
    Length 510'
    Beam 84'
    Draft 19'
    Speed 20 kts.
    Officers 18
    Enlisted 330
    Troop Accommodations 325
    Armament (as built)
    four twin 3"/50 dual purpose gun mounts
    four twin 40mm gun mounts
    six twin 20mm AA gun mounts
    Boat Capacity (Well Deck)
    three LCUs or nine LCM-8's or fifty AAV's/LVTP-7's amphibious tractors
    Aircraft Capacity helicopter landing area
    two D-type boilers, 600psi.
    two steam turbines
    two propellers, 24,000shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed
    Fort Snelling 41k
    Fort Snelling is a United States military fortification located at the confluence of the Minnesota and Mississippi rivers in Hennepin County, MN. The Mississippi National River and Recreation Area, a National Park Service unit, includes historic Fort Snelling. The fort is located in Fort Snelling Unorganized Territory in Hennepin County, MN. The fort is designated as a National Historic Landmark.
    "Fort Snelling in 1844", by John Caspar Wild (Minnesota Historical Society).
    Tommy Trampp
    Fort Snelling 158k Fort Snelling (LSD-30) underway off her builder's yard at Pascagoula, MS., 12 January 1955.
    US Navy photo from "U.S. Amphibious Ships and Craft: An Illustrated Design History" by Norman Friedman.
    Robert Hurst
    Fort Snelling 111k USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30) underway, date and location unknown.
    US Navy photo from "All Hands" magazine April 1957.
    Joe Radigan MACM USN Ret.
    Fort Snelling 79k USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30) with her well deck flooded takes aboard LCU-1487, date and location unknown.
    US Navy photo from "All Hands" magazine July 1957.
    Joe Radigan MACM USN Ret.
    Fort Snelling 61k USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30) off loading an LCU at Red Beach, Lebanon, 16 July 1958.
    US Navy photo from DANFS.
    Joe Radigan MACM USN Ret.
    Fort Snelling 321k USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30) preparing to moor in the harbor at Rapallo (Genoa), Italy, 28 February 1962. Photo by Carlo Martinelli
    Fort Snelling 44k Two photos of USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30)'s well-deck and flight deck filled with US Army vehicles during Power Pack Operations in the Dominican Republic, mid-September 1966. Wayne Schipper, BMCM USN Ret.
    Graham County
    420k Carib 1-68 Patrol Caribbean Ready Group steams in formation as it patrols the Caribbean Sea. Commanded by Capt. J. B. Drachnik, USN, Commander Amphibious Squadron Four, its mission is the promotion of peace and goodwill and the protection of U.S. citizens and property ashore in time of crisis. Homeported in Norfolk, VA., the Group has been deployed since March. Ships of the Ready Group are: (l-r)
    Attack Cargo Ship USS Rankin (AKA-103);
    Dock Landing Ship, USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30);
    Amphibious Assault Ship, USS Boxer (LPH-4);
    Tank Landing Ship, USS Graham County (LST-1176); and
    High Speed Transport, USS Kirwin (APD-90).
    The original photograph and caption was released by USS Boxer in 1968. .
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 97284 by PH2 A. P. Gonthier, Jr..
    Mike Smolinski
    Fort Snelling 86k USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30) underway in the Atlantic Ocean, circa 1970s. Yu Chu courtesy Paul Adams
    Fort Snelling 101k USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30)moored pierside at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, 20 February 1971. © Richard Leonhardt
    Fort Snelling 86k USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30) moored pierside at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, 21 February 1971. © Richard Leonhardt
    Fort Snelling 283k USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30) moored pierside during a port visit to Newcastle upon Tyne in 1972. Graeme Hanson
    Fort Snelling 245k
    Fort Snelling 272k
    Fort Snelling 330k
    Fort Snelling 273k
    Fort Snelling 87k USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30) underway, date and location unknown.  
    LCU-1664 1160k LCU-1664 and LCU-1663 and a LCM-6 moored forward of USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30) at Genoa, Italy, 5 March 1977. Photo by Carlo Martinelli
    Fort Snelling 78k USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30) at Barcelona, Spain, 6 April 1977. Note the SPS-6 air search radar antenna on the mast. Thomaston-class LSDs were the last active ships fitted with this radar set. USS El Paso (LKA-117) is alongside. Photo by Fabio Peņa
    Fort Snelling 108k USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30) at Barcelona, Spain, 6 April 1977, USS El Paso (LKA-117 is just visible inboard of Fort Snelling. Photo by Fabio Peņa
    Fort Snelling 75k USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30) underway, date and location unknown.
    Image from Veramar Arts
    Tommy Trampp
    Fort Snelling
    225k USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30) underway off Norfolk, VA., date unknown. .
    ©Nobe Smith
    Nicholas Tiberio

    USS Fort Snelling (LSD-30)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01CDR. Marvin-Smith, Harry, USN24 January 1955 - 24 May 1956
    02CDR. DuBois, Francis Latta, USN24 May 1956 - 27 October 1957
    03CAPT. Glennon, William Redus, USN (USNA 1938)27 October 1957 - 24 October 1958
    04CAPT. Brookings II, Robert Somers, USN24 October 1958 - 16 October 1959
    05CAPT. Dewey, Irving Doremus, USN (USNA 1939)16 October 1959 - 19 August 1960
    06CAPT. Greene, Howard James, USN (USNA 1939)19 August 1960 - 12 August 1961
    07CAPT. Klingaman, Leon Carl (Lonnie), USN (USNA 1941)12 August 1961 - 31 July 1962
    08CAPT. Gebert Jr., Wesley Robert, USN (USNA 1942)31 July 1962 - 27 September 1963
    09CAPT. Rusch Jr., William John, USN (USNA 1942)27 September 1963 - 2 October 1964
    10CAPT. Fox Jr., John Peter, USN2 October 1964 - 27 July 1965
    11CAPT. Robinson, Irving Anthony, USN (USNA 1944)27 July 1965 - 1 September 1966
    12CAPT. Hanssen, Henry Raphael, USN (USNA 1944)1 September 1966 - 18 December 1967
    13CAPT. Rush, Max Robinson, USN (USNA 1945)18 December 1967 - 7 February 1969
    14CAPT. Wells, David Mason, USN (USNA 1946)7 February 1969 - 30 July 1970
    15CAPT. Sabin, Nelson, USN30 July 1970 - September 1971
    16CDR. Wright Jr., Kenneth Lorne, USN (USNA 1953)September 1971 - February 1972
    17CDR. Burpo, James Harvey, USNFebruary 1972 - August 1973
    18CDR. McIndoe, James Edward, USNAugust 1973 - September 1975
    19CDR. Hunter, Wallace Robert, USNSeptember 1975 - August 1977
    20CDR. Rybarczyk, Anthony Mark, USNAugust 1977 - 12 October 1979
    21CDR. Pauling, David Robert, USN12 October 1979 - 18 December 1981
    22CDR. Taylor III, William Ivey, USN (USNA 1965)18 December 1981 - 19 March 1984
    23CDR. McCarthy, Richard John, USN19 March 1984 - 5 September 1984
    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
    Amphibious Squadron (12 CARIB 1-69 February - June 1969) Dependent's Guide
    Back To The Navsource Photo Archives Main Page Back To The Amphibious Ship Type Index Back To The Dock Landing Ship (LSD) Photo Index
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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History
    Last Updated 4 October 2022