USS Arkab (AK-130)

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Career (US)
Ordered: as SS Warren Stone
EC2-S-C1 hull, MC hull 2449
Laid down: 4 December 1943
Launched: 22 January 1944
Acquired: 21 February 1944
Commissioned: 21 February 1944
Decommissioned: 25 February 1944
In service: 15 May 1944
Out of service: 2 January 1946
Struck: 21 January 1946
Fate: sold for scrapping, 21 September 1971
General characteristics
Displacement: 4,023 t.(lt) 11,565 t.(fl)
Length: 441 ft 6 in (134.57 m)
Beam: 56 ft 11 in (17.35 m)
Draught: 28 ft 4 in (8.64 m)
Propulsion: reciprocating steam engine, single shaft, 1,950shp
Speed: 12 kts.
Complement: 206
Armament: one 5"/38 dual purpose gun mount; two dual 40mm AA gun mounts; eight single 20mm AA gun mounts

USS Arkab (AK-130) was an Crater-class cargo ship commissioned by the U.S. Navy for service in World War II, named after Arkab, the star in constellation Sagittarius. She was responsible for delivering troops, goods and equipment to locations in the war zone.

Before the start of her construction, SS Warren Stone—a freighter built under a Maritime Commission contract (MCE hull 2449) at New Orleans, Louisiana, by the Delta Shipbuilding Corp. -- was slated for Navy use, renamed Arkab, and designated AK-130 on 1 December 1943. Her keel was laid down on 4 December 1943; and the ship was launched on 22 January 1944; sponsored by Mrs. Charles E. Williams; acquired by the Navy; and commissioned on 21 February 1944 for passage to Mobile, Alabama; decommissioned there on 25 February 1944 for conversion by the Alabama Shipbuilding & Drydock Co.; and recommissioned on 15 May 1944, Comdr. Finnan F. Knachel in command.

World War II Pacific Theatre operations[edit]

Arkab held shakedown training in Chesapeake Bay through mid-June. She sailed on 30 June for the Pacific Ocean. After transiting the Panama Canal, Arkab moored at Pago Pago, Samoa, on 29 August. Cargo destined for New Caledonia was taken on board, and Arkab reached Noumea on 10 September. There, she embarked 200 military passengers for transportation to the U.S. west coast.

Supporting South Pacific Navy bases[edit]

Upon her arrival at San Francisco, California, Arkab underwent voyage repairs. On 10 November, she departed the U.S. West Coast on the first of a series of supply runs to bases in the Pacific. By the end of November 1945 the ship had steamed some 60,000 miles. Ports of call included Pearl Harbor; Manus Island, Admiralty Islands; Milne Bay and Langemak, New Guinea; Saipan; and Eniwetok. Although not equipped to accommodate troops, Arkab transported over 1,200 passengers during her career.

End-of-war activity[edit]

The ship terminated the final voyage of her career at Norfolk, Virginia, on 16 December.

Post-war decommissioning[edit]

Arkab was decommissioned on 2 January 1946, turned over to the War Shipping Administration for disposal, placed in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, and laid up in the James River berthing area. Her name was struck from the Navy list on 21 January 1946. She was sold on 21 September 1971 to N. V. Intershitra, of Rotterdam, Netherlands, and scrapped.

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