USS Mahan (DD-102)

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For other ships of the same name, see USS Mahan.
USS Mahan, DD-102
Career (US)
Namesake: Alfred Thayer Mahan
Builder: Fore River Shipyard, Quincy, Massachusetts
Laid down: 4 May 1918
Launched: 4 August 1918
Commissioned: 24 October 1918
Decommissioned: 1 May 1930
Reclassified: 17 July 1920, DM-7
Struck: 22 October 1930
Fate: Sold for scrap, 17 January 1931
General characteristics
Class and type: Wickes class destroyer
Displacement: 1,060 tons
Length: 314 ft 5 in (95.83 m)
Beam: 30 ft 11 in (9.42 m)
Draft: 8 ft 6 in (2.59 m)
Speed: 35 knots (65 km/h)
Complement: 133 officers and enlisted
Armament: 4 × 4" (102 mm); 2 × 1 pdrs. (0.454 kg), 12 × 21" (533 mm) torpedo tubes

The first USS Mahan (DD-102) was a Wickes-class destroyer in the US Navy during World War I and named for Rear Admiral Alfred Thayer Mahan. She was converted into a light minelayer on 17 July 1920 and designated as DM-7.


Mahan was laid down on 4 May 1918 by the Fore River Shipyard, Quincy, Massachusetts. She was launched on 4 August 1918, sponsored by Miss Ellen K. Mahan, niece of Rear Admiral Mahan, and commissioned on 24 October 1918, with Lieutenant Commander F. P. Conger in command.

After shakedown, Mahan operated off Cuba until May 1919. She then steamed to the Azores to become one of the guide ships for the transatlantic flights of the Navy flying boats: NC-1, NC-3, and NC-4. Mahan returned to Boston, Massachusetts, via Brest, France, on 21 June. She was converted into a light minelayer on 17 July 1920 and designated as DM-7.

With the exception of a cruise to Pearl Harbor for maneuvers in early 1925, Mahan operated along the east coast, the Caribbean, and off the Panama Canal Zone for the next 10 years. During this time, she participated in fleet training exercises, and patrolled courses for the International Six Meter Sailing Races of 1922 and 1927. Mahan assisted in salvage operations for submarines S-51 in September 1925 off Block Island, and did so for S-4, periodically, from 17 December 1927 through mid-March 1928 off Provincetown, Massachusetts. She conducted reserve-training cruises in the Caribbean from 1928 to September 1929. Throughout the decade, in addition to her regular duties, Mahan served as an experimental ship testing new equipment for the Navy’s future use.

On 20 September 1929, Mahan entered the Philadelphia Navy Yard where she decommissioned on 1 May 1930 and struck from the Navy Register on 22 October. She was sold for scrap on 17 January 1931 to the Boston Iron & Metal Company of Baltimore, Maryland.


USS Mahan (DD-102) was used in the Destroyermen series, written by Taylor Anderson. In the books, Mahan and her sister ship USS Walker (DD-163) are pursued by superior Japanese naval forces after the Battle of the Java Sea and seek refuge in a squall. The squall transports Mahan and Walker to an alternate earth, one where a different evolutionary path occurred. Anderson also uses other decommissioned ships in the series: USS S-19 (SS-124) and the Japanese battlecruiser Amagi.


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