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Identification Numbered Ships Photo Archive

Neponset (ID 3581)

Civilian call sign (1919):
Love - Nan - Fox - Mike

Animal Transport:

  • Laid down 7 November 1917 as Merrimac by the Sun Shipbuilding Co., Chester, PA for the Shawmut Steamship Co. of Philadelphia, PA
  • Renamed Shawmut
  • Launched 4 July 1918
  • Acquired by the Navy 28 October 1918 at New York and commissioned USS Neponset (ID 3581) the same day
  • Decommissioned 4 February 1919 at Norfolk, VA, struck from the Navy Register and returned to the United States Shipping Board (USSB)
  • Sold to the Shawmut Steamship Co. and renamed Shawmut
  • Sold in 1929 to the Luckenbach Steamship Co. and renamed Susan V. Luckenbach
  • Scrapped in 1947 at Mobile, AL.


  • Displacement 16,008 t.
  • Length 450'
  • Beam 57' 7"
  • Draft 28' 1"
  • Speed 10.5 kts.
  • Complement 86
  • Armament: One 5"/51 and one 3"/50 mount
  • Propulsion: Four single ended boilers, one 3,200hp vertical triple expansion steam engine, one shaft.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    Neponset 47k Photographed in "dazzle" camouflage when first completed by the Sun Shipbuilding Company, Chester, Pennsylvania, in 1918
    U.S. Navy photo NH 102061
    Naval Historical Center
    Neponset 122k In port, possibly on 22 October 1918, when she was inspected by the Third Naval District
    Naval Historical Center photo NH 103545
    Robert Hurst

    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships History: Neponset (No. 3581), launched as Shawmut by the Sun Shipbuilding Co., Chester, Pa., 4 July 1918, was transferred to the Navy at New York 28 October 1918, and commissioned the same day, Lt. Comdr. Charles H. Lawrence, USNRF. in command.

    After conversion to an animal transport, Neponset, with a general cargo and horses, cleared New York for France 13 November, arriving Bordeaux the 30th.

    Upon returning to the United States she was ordered out of service, decommissioned 4 February 1919 at Norfolk, and returned to USSB.

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