USS Camden (AS-6)

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USS Camden in 1924
USS Camden in 1924
Career 100x35px
Name: USS Camden
Namesake: Camden, New Jersey
Builder: Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft, Flensburg, Germany
Launched: 1900, as SS Kiel
Acquired: by seizure, April 1917
Commissioned: 15 August 1917
Decommissioned: 3 May 1918
Recommissioned: 21 February 1919
Decommissioned: 26 May 1931
Recommissioned: 17 September 1940
Decommissioned: 23 October 1946
Reclassified: ID-3143, 15 August 1917
AS-6, 17 July 1920
IX-42, 17 September 1940
Fate: Sold, 23 October 1946
General characteristics
Type: Cargo ship / submarine tender / barracks ship
Displacement: 6,075 long tons (6,172 t)
Length: 403 ft 6 in (122.99 m)
Beam: 47 ft 6 in (14.48 m)
Draft: 24 ft 9 in (7.54 m)
Speed: 12 kn (14 mph; 22 km/h)
Complement: 345
Armament: 4 × 4 in (100 mm)/50 cal guns, 2 × 3 in (76 mm)/50 cal dual purpose guns

USS Camden (AS-6) was the first ship of the United States Navy to bear the name Camden, after Camden, New Jersey the city that lies on the Delaware River across from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Cargo ship, 1917-1918

Camden was built in 1900 by Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft, Flensburg, Germany, as SS Kiel; seized by the United States after its entry into World War I in April 1917; transferred from the Shipping Board on 22 May 1917; fitted out as a cargo ship and commissioned on 15 August 1917 as USS Camden (ID-3143), Lieutenant Commander E. C. Jones, USNRF, in command.

Clearing New York in September 1917, Camden carried coal between Cardiff, Wales, and French ports, with one voyage to the United States, until 25 April 1918, when she again sailed for the U.S. She was decommissioned at Philadelphia Navy Yard on 3 May for conversion into a submarine tender.

Submarine tender, 1919-1931

Camden began her many years of service with submarines on 21 February 1919, when she was re-commissioned as a submarine tender, AS-6. Based on New London, Connecticut, she was flagship for Commander, Submarine Flotilla, Atlantic Fleet, and Commander, Submarine Division 9 (SubDiv 9) until 15 September 1920. After repairs at Norfolk, Virginia, she followed her division to the Pacific, where she took up tender duties based on San Pedro, California on 24 June 1921. She briefly served as flagship of Commander, Submarine Flotilla, Pacific Fleet early in 1922, and in March 1923 returned to the Atlantic for duty. As flagship of SubDiv 4 at New London, and later as flagship of Commander, Control Force, she led in large-scale maneuvers and exercises. Highlights of this period included her participation in determined efforts to raise S-5 in September-October 1925, and her presence at the presidential Naval Review in Hampton Roads in May 1927. Camden was decommissioned at Philadelphia on 26 May 1931.

Barracks ship, 1940-1946

War called the veteran back from retirement, and on 17 September 1940 Camden was reclassified IX-42, and assigned to New York Navy Yard as a barracks ship. Towed by tug Allegheny, the floating barracks arrived at Pier 92, New York City on 18 September, and performed her humble but essential role of berthing the war-swollen complement of the yard until 23 October 1946, when she was sold.


This article includes text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. The entry can be found here.

External links