USS Queens (APA-103) at anchor, c. 1945
|Name:||USS Queens (APA-103)|
|Namesake:||Queens, New York City|
|Laid down:||2 March 1944|
|Launched:||12 September 1944|
|Sponsored by:||Miss Jeanne L Fogle|
|Acquired:||16 December 1944|
|Commissioned:||16 December 1944|
|Decommissioned:||10 June 1946|
|Struck:||19 June 1946|
|Fate:||Sunk as an artificial reef off Texas, 17 November 2007|
|Class and type:||Windsor-class attack transport|
|Displacement:||7,970 tons (lt), 13,143 t. (fl)|
|Length:||473 ft 1 in (144.20 m)|
|Beam:||66 ft (20 m)|
|Draft:||25 ft (7.6 m)|
|Propulsion:||Bethlehem geared turbine drive, 2 × Babcock & Wilcox header-type boilers, single propeller, designed shaft horsepower 8,000|
|Complement:||Officer 42 Enlisted 434|
|Armament:||1 × 5"/38 caliber dual-purpose gun mounts, 2 × Bofors 40mm gun mounts, 2 × twin 20mm gun mounts, 18 × single 20mm gun mounts|
|Notes:||MCV Hull No. 1677, hull type C3-S-A3|
USS Queens (APA-103) was a Windsor-class attack transport that served with the US Navy during World War II. She was commissioned late in the war and initially assigned to transport duties; consequently she did not take part in any combat operations.
Attack transport is a United States Navy ship classification for a variant of ocean-going troopship adapted to transporting invasion forces ashore. Unlike standard troopships – often drafted from the merchant fleet – that rely on either a quay or tenders, attack transports carry their own fleet of landing craft.
World War II, also known as the Second World War, was a global war that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries—including all the great powers—eventually formed two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. A state of total war emerged, directly involving more than 100 million people from over 30 countries. The major participants threw their entire economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind the war effort, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. World War II was the deadliest conflict in human history, marked by 50 to 85 million fatalities, most of whom were civilians in the Soviet Union and China. It included massacres, the genocide of the Holocaust, strategic bombing, premeditated death from starvation and disease, and the only use of nuclear weapons in war.
Queens was named after Queens, a borough in New York City. She was laid down 2 March 1944 by Bethlehem Steel at Sparrows Point, Maryland; launched 12 September 1944; acquired by the Navy from the Maritime Commission on loan charter 16 December 1944; and commissioned 16 December 1944, Capt. John J. Mockrish, USNR, in command.
Queens is the easternmost of the five boroughs of New York City. It is the largest borough geographically and is adjacent to the borough of Brooklyn at the southwestern end of Long Island. To its east is Nassau County. Queens also shares water borders with the boroughs of Manhattan and the Bronx. Coterminous with Queens County since 1899, the borough of Queens is the second largest in population, with an estimated 2,358,582 residents in 2017, approximately 48% of them foreign-born. Queens County also is the second most populous county in the U.S. state of New York, behind Brooklyn, which is coterminous with Kings County. Queens is the fourth most densely populated county among New York City's boroughs, as well as in the United States. If each of New York City's boroughs were an independent city, Queens would be the nation's fourth most populous, after Los Angeles, Chicago, and Brooklyn. Queens is the most ethnically diverse urban area in the world.
The Bethlehem Steel Corporation was a steel and shipbuilding company that began operations in 1904 and was America's second-largest steel producer and largest shipbuilder.
Sparrow's Point is an unincorporated community in Baltimore County, Maryland, adjacent to Dundalk. Named for Thomas Sparrow, landowner, it was the site of a very large industrial complex owned by Bethlehem Steel, known for steelmaking and shipbuilding.
Following shakedown and amphibious training in Chesapeake Bay, Queens reported for duty at Queens, New York, to Commander, Task Force 29, 15 January 1945. Sailing via Norfolk, Virginia and the Panama Canal, she arrived Pearl Harbor 7 February. After training, she departed Pearl Harbor 2 March, carrying 1,250 Army and Navy troops.
The Chesapeake Bay is an estuary in the U.S. states of Maryland and Virginia. The Bay is located in the Mid-Atlantic region and is primarily separated from the Atlantic Ocean by the Delmarva Peninsula with its mouth located between Cape Henry and Cape Charles. With its northern portion in Maryland and the southern part in Virginia, the Chesapeake Bay is a very important feature for the ecology and economy of those two states, as well as others. More than 150 major rivers and streams flow into the Bay's 64,299-square-mile (166,534 km2) drainage basin, which covers parts of six states and all of Washington, D.C.
Norfolk is an independent city in the Commonwealth of Virginia in the United States. At the 2010 census, the population was 242,803; in 2017, the population was estimated to be 244,703 making it the second-most populous city in Virginia after neighboring Virginia Beach.
The Panama Canal is an artificial 82 km (51 mi) waterway in Panama that connects the Atlantic Ocean with the Pacific Ocean. The canal cuts across the Isthmus of Panama and is a conduit for maritime trade. Canal locks are at each end to lift ships up to Gatun Lake, an artificial lake created to reduce the amount of excavation work required for the canal, 26 m above sea level, and then lower the ships at the other end. The original locks are 34 m wide. A third, wider lane of locks was constructed between September 2007 and May 2016. The expanded canal began commercial operation on June 26, 2016. The new locks allow transit of larger, post-Panamax ships, capable of handling more cargo.
Arriving via Eniwetok, she debarked troops at Iwo Jima 26 March. She began medical treatment for Iwo Jima casualties 30 March. Departing Iwo Jima 12 April with 1,500 Marines, she proceeded via Guam, Eniwetok and Pearl Harbor to Hilo, Hawaii, where she debarked troops 25 April.
Iwo To, known in English as Iwo Jima, is one of the Japanese Volcano Islands and lies south of the Bonin Islands. Together with other islands, they form the Ogasawara Archipelago. The highest point of Iwo Jima is Mount Suribachi at 169 m (554 ft) high.
Guam is an unincorporated and organized territory of the United States in Micronesia in the western Pacific Ocean. It is the easternmost point and territory of the United States, along with the Northern Mariana Islands. The capital city of Guam is Hagåtña and the most populous city is Dededo. The inhabitants of Guam are called Guamanians, and they are American citizens by birth. Indigenous Guamanians are the Chamorros, who are related to other Austronesian natives of Eastern Indonesia and Philippines and Taiwan. Guam has been a member of the Pacific Community since 1983.
Hilo is the largest town and census-designated place (CDP) in Hawaii County, Hawaii, United States, which encompasses the Island of Hawaiʻi. The population was 43,263 at the 2010 census.
Following amphibious training, she left Pearl Harbor for San Francisco 23 May, and proceeded to Everett, Washington, for repairs. Sailing back to action via Pearl Harbor, she delivered troops and cargo to Saipan 11 July. After steaming non-stop from Saipan to San Francisco, arriving 25 July, she delivered troops to Pearl Harbor 11 August.
Everett is the county seat of and the largest city in Snohomish County, Washington, United States. It is located 25 miles (40 km) north of Seattle and is one of the main cities in the metropolitan area and Puget Sound region. Everett is the seventh-largest city in Washington state and had a total population of 103,019 at the 2010 census. The city is located at the mouth of the Snohomish River along Port Gardner Bay, an inlet of Possession Sound.
Saipan is the largest island of the Northern Mariana Islands, a commonwealth of the United States in the western Pacific Ocean. According to 2017 estimates by the United States Census Bureau, Saipan's population was 52,263.
Loaded with 5th Amphibious personnel, she debarked occupation troops at Sasebo, Japan, 22 September, and then embarked Army infantrymen in the Philippines, before returning to the United States.
Sasebo is a core city located in Nagasaki Prefecture, Japan. As of 1 October 2016, the city has an estimated population of 251,417 and a population density of 590 persons per km². The total area is 426.47 km2 (165 sq mi).
The Philippines, officially the Republic of the Philippines, is an archipelagic country in Southeast Asia. Situated in the western Pacific Ocean, it consists of about 7,641 islands that are categorized broadly under three main geographical divisions from north to south: Luzon, Visayas, and Mindanao. The capital city of the Philippines is Manila and the most populous city is Quezon City, both part of Metro Manila. Bounded by the South China Sea on the west, the Philippine Sea on the east and the Celebes Sea on the southwest, the Philippines shares maritime borders with Taiwan to the north, Vietnam to the west, Palau to the east, and Malaysia and Indonesia to the south.
Assigned to inactive status in September 1945, Queens arrived Norfolk on 29 April 1946, decommissioned 10 June, and was redelivered to the War Shipping Administration 11 June. She was struck from the Naval Vessel Register 19 June 1946.
Queens was converted to Maritime Commission hull type P1-S1-DR1 in November 1947. She was purchased by American Export Lines, 22 November 1948 and renamed Excambion. On 17 March 1959, Excambion was returned to the Maritime Administration under a trade-in program. She was then laid up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, Hudson River Group from 20 April 1959.
The ship was loaned to the Texas Maritime Academy 26 April 1965, for service as a merchant marine officer training ship and renamed USTS Texas Clipper. She continued serving in this role for the next thirty years, until being sunk as an artificial reef on 17 November 2007, seventeen miles off South Padre Island, Texas.
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