Please report any broken links or trouble you might come across to the Webmaster. Please take a moment to let us know so that we can correct any problems and make your visit as enjoyable and as informative as possible.

NavSource Online:
Section Patrol Craft Photo Archive

Jolly Roger (SP 1031)


  • Built in 1917 by W. T. Ruddock, New York City, NY for J. Lawrence Van Allen of New York and Newport, RI
  • Acquired by the Navy 16 December 1917 and commissioned USS Jolly Roger (SP 1031) the same day
  • Damaged beyond repair, 6 November 1918
  • Struck from the Naval Register 4 April 1919.


  • Displacement 22 t.
  • Length 55' 2"
  • Beam 9' 9"
  • Draft 3'
  • Speed 26 kts.
  • Armament: One 1-pounder and one machine gun
  • Propulsion: One 265hp 6-cylinder Dusenberg gasoline engine, one shaft.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    Jolly Roger 103k

    Jolly Roger is the traditional English name for the flags flown to identify a pirate ship about to attack, during the early 18th century (the later part of the Golden Age of Piracy). The flag most commonly identified as the Jolly Roger today, the skull and crossbones symbol on a black flag - most often, depicted with the crossed bones below the mandible (if present), was used during the 1710s by a number of pirate captains including Black Sam Bellamy, Edward England, and John Taylor. It went on to become the most commonly used pirate flag during the 1720s, although other designs were also in use

    Tommy Trampp
    Photo added 1 November 2020
    Jolly Roger 268k Conducting speed trials on the Hudson River, NY
    Photo from the August 1917 edition of MotorBoat magazine
    Joe Radigan

    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships: Jolly Roger (SP-1031), a wooden motor boat, was built in 1917 by W. T. Ruddock, New York City, and was taken over at Newport from her owner, J. S. Van Allen, New York City, on 16 December 1917.

    Jolly Roger was assigned to the Torpedo Station, Newport, and performed valuable work ranging torpedoes, as well as aiding in experimental work on mines and depth charges. The boat also engaged in general dispatch and supply work in the harbor area. While being loaded on board Kanawha [AO 1] 6 November 1918, Jolly Roger was damaged beyond repair and was struck from the Navy List
    4 April 1919.

    Back to the Main Photo Index Back to the Patrol Craft/Gunboat/Submarine Chaser Ship Index Back To The Section Patrol Craft Photo Index

    Comments, Suggestions, E-mail Webmaster

    This page created by Joseph M. Radigan and maintained by David Wright
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History