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USS Shoshone (AKA-65)

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USSShoshone.jpg USS Shoshone (AKA-65)
Laid down: 12 May 1944
Launched: 17 July 1944
Commissioned: 24 September 1944
Decommissioned: 28 June 1946
Struck: 19 July 1946
Fate: Merchant service to 1971, then scrapped
General Characteristics
Hull Type: C2-S-AJ3
Displacement: 8,635 tons light, 13,910 tons loaded
Length: 459 ft 2 in (140 m)
Beam: 63 ft (19.2 m)
Draft: 26 ft 4 in (8.0 m)
Propulsion: GE geared steam turbine drive, single propeller,
6,000 shp (4.5 MW)
Speed: 16.5 knots (30.6 km/h)
Complement: 395 (62 officers, 333 men), plus embarked troops
Armament: 1 × 5"/38 caliber DP gun,
4 × twin 40 mm AA guns,
16 × 20 mm AA guns
Boats: 14 LCVP,
NOTES: Some sources report different displacements for ships of this type. Speed and complement may have changed as the ship or her mission were modified. Often one or two LCVPs were replaced by LCPLs. 20mm AA guns were sometimes removed.

USS Shoshone (AKA-65) was a Tolland class attack cargo ship named after a river in Wyoming. She was designed to carry military cargo and landing craft, and to use the latter to land weapons, supplies, and Marines on enemy shores during amphibious operations. USS Shoshone served as a commissioned ship for 21 months, receiving two battle stars for her World War II service.


She was laid down on 12 May 1944 under Maritime Commission contract (MC hull 1388) by the North Carolina Shipbuilding Company, Wilmington, North Carolina; launched on 17 July 1944; sponsored by Mrs. N. J. Smith; and commissioned on 24 September 1944, LCDR Stanley E. Melville, USNR, in command.

Prior to her definitive commissioning, Shoshone had been in commission from 31 August 1944 for the voyage from Wilmington, North Carolina, to the Charleston Navy Yard, where she completed fitting out. She arrived at Norfolk on 5 October 1944 and underwent shakedown training in Hampton Roads and Chesapeake Bay from 7 October to 18 October. After repairs, she arrived at Bayonne, New Jersey to load cargo for the Pacific. Underway from Bayonne on, she transited the Panama Canal on the 9th and arrived on the 22nd at Pearl Harbor, where she discharged her cargo. After undergoing amphibious training, she loaded assault cargo and personnel of the 5th Marines at Maui, T. H., from [. She underwent additional training between 12 January and 14 January; but, in January, USS Muliphen (AKA-61) rammed her stern, necessitating repairs at Pearl Harbor.

She participated in an invasion rehearsal off Tinian on 12 February and departed Saipan on for the invasion of Iwo Jima. She arrived off Iwo Jima early on 19 February, sent her boats to help offload troops from the attack transports, and discharged small amounts of high priority cargo as called for by the troops ashore. On 26 February, general unloading of cargo began, and Shoshone completed unloading on 1 March and departed Iwo Jima the same day.

Shoshone arrived at Saipan and completed loading personnel and equipment of the 2d Marine Division on 8 March. She underwent training at Tinian, and for the Okinawa invasion. She arrived off Okinawa on 1 April, but never landed her troops there—she was ordered to a position 350 miles southeast of Okinawa and ordered to return to Saipan, unloading on 23 May.

On 4 June 1945, Shoshone departed Saipan; and. for the next three months, she carried cargo between Western Pacific bases. She arrived at Manila as part of a force carrying occupation troops of the 81st Army Division and other 8th Army units to Aomori, Honshū, Japan. She arrived there on 25 September, moved to Otaru Harbor, Hokkaidō, on 5 October;. Departing Hokkaidō on 12 October], she loaded additional Army troops and equipment at Leyte Gulf b and arrived at Aomori, Honshu, on 5 November.

On 19 November, Shoshone sailed from Japan for Seattle with 411 homeward-bound servicemen. On arrival, she underwent repairs until 23 December, when she sailed for San Francisco. She made another round-trip from San Francisco to Pearl Harbor; and, on 16 May, she departed San Francisco with supplies for Kwajalein and Guam, arriving at Norfolk, Va., for deactivation. Shoshone was decommissioned on 28 June and struck from the Navy list on 19 July 1946. Sold into mercantile service as Alameda in 1947, she was renamed Hawaiian Trader in 1961, Short Hills in 1961, Colorado in 1964, and U. S. Mate in 1966, before being scrapped in 1971 at Kaohsiung, Taiwan.