Cimarron class oiler (1939)

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USS Cimarron (AO-22), lead ship of the class in February 1942
Class overview
Operators: United States Navy
In commission:1939–1992
Completed:30, later 4 converted to escort carriers
General characteristics
Type: Fleet replenishment oiler
Displacement: 7,470 long tons (7,590 t) light
24,830 long tons (25,228 t) full load
Length: 553 ft (169 m)
Beam: 75 ft (23 m)
Draft: 32 ft 4 in (9.86 m)
Propulsion: Geared turbines, twin screws, 30,400 shp (22,669 kW)
Speed: 18 knots (21 mph; 33 km/h)
Capacity: 146,000 barrels
Complement: 304
Armament: • 4 × 5"/38 caliber guns
• 4 × twin 40 mm gun mounts
• 4 × twin 20 mm gun mounts

The Cimarron class oilers were an underway replenishment class of oil tankers which were first built in 1939. Four of the ships were converted into escort carriers in 1942. These ships were of the United States Maritime Administration Type T3-S2-A1.


Converted to Sangamon-class escort carriers in 1942:

  • USS Sangamon (CVE-26) Originally AO-28; launched 1939, commissioned 1940, decommissioned 1945, sold for commercial service 1948
  • USS Suwannee (CVE-27) Originally AO-33; launched 1939, commissioned 1941, decommissioned 1947, sold for scrap 1961
  • USS Chenango (CVE-28) Originally AO-31; launched 1939, commissioned 1941, decommissioned 1946, sold 1960
  • USS Santee (CVE-29) Originally AO-29; launched 1939, commissioned 1940, decommissioned 1946, struck 1959, scrapped 1960

There is some controversy about the five MARAD Type T3-S2-A3 oilers being a class of their own, the Mispillion-class. This is further complicated by the fact that these five ships were jumboized in the 1960s, together with USS Ashtabula (AO-51), USS Caloosahatchee (AO-98), and USS Canisteo (AO-99), for some then comprising the Ashtabula-class - sometimes with or without the Mispillions.


US Navy captains who had flight status ("wings") were eligible to command aircraft carriers. For lack of carriers, however, the Navy assigned these officers to oilers which had a similar draft.[citation needed]


This article includes text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships.