Haskell-class attack transport

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
USS Noble (APA-218) underway off San Diego, California (USA), on 4 December 1956 (NH 97122).jpg
USS Noble, a ship of the Haskell class, in 1956
Class overview
NameHaskell class
Preceded byGilliam class
Succeeded byPaul Revere class
In commission11 September 1944 – 29 October 1945
General characteristics
TypeAttack transport
Displacement6,873 tons (lt), 14,837 t (fl)
Length455 ft (139 m)
Beam62 ft (19 m)
Draft24 ft (7 m)
Propulsion1 × geared turbine (Westinghouse, Joshua Hendy or Allis-Chalmers), 2 × header-type boilers (Babcock & Wilcox or Combustion Engineering), 1 × propeller, designed 8,500 shp (6,338 kW)
Speed18–19 knots (33–35 km/h; 21–22 mph)
Boats & landing
craft carried
  • Troops: 86 officers, 1,475 enlisted
  • Cargo: 150,000 cu ft, 2,900 tons
Complement56 officers, 480 enlisted

Haskell-class attack transports (APA) were amphibious assault ships of the United States Navy created in 1944. They were designed to transport 1,500 troops and their combat equipment, and land them on hostile shores with the ships' integral landing craft.

The Haskells were very active in the World War II Pacific Theater of Operations, landing Marines and Army troops and transporting casualties at Iwo Jima and Okinawa. Ships of the class were among the first Allied ships to enter Tokyo Bay at the end of World War II, landing the first occupation troops at Yokosuka. After the end of World War II, most participated in Operation Magic Carpet, the massive sealift of US personnel back to the United States. A few of the Haskell class were reactivated for the Korean War, with some staying in service into the Vietnam War.

The Haskell class, Maritime Commission standard type VC2-S-AP5, is a sub‑type of the World War II Victory ship design. 117 were launched in 1944 and 1945, with 14 more being finished as another VC2 type or canceled. Built by the War Shipping Administration under the Emergency Shipbuilding program.


The VC2-S-AP5 design was intended for the transport and assault landing of over 1,500 troops and their heavy combat equipment. During Operation Magic Carpet, up to 1,900 personnel per ship were carried homeward.[Note 1]

The Haskells carried 25 landing craft to deliver the troops and equipment right onto the beach. The 23 main boats were the 36-foot (11 m)-long LCVP. The LCVP was designed to carry 36 equipped troops. The other two landing craft were the 50-foot (15 m)-long LCM (3), capable of carrying 60 troops or 30 tons (27 t) of cargo, or the 56-foot (17 m) LCM (6).[1] They also carried one gig.

The Haskell-class ships were armed with one 5"/38 caliber gun, twelve Bofors 40 mm L/60 guns (one quad mount, four dual mounts), and ten Oerlikon 20 mm guns.

Ships of the Haskell class[edit]

USS St. Mary's in San Francisco Bay, California, in late 1945 or early 1946. She is returning troops from the western Pacific to the United States as part of Operation Magic Carpet. Note the long homeward bound pennant trailing from her after mast, and the sign on shore (in the right distance) stating "Welcome Home, Well Done."

Haskell-class attack transports included APA-117, USS Haskell, the lead ship, through APA-247, the never completed USS Mecklenburg. The hulls for APA-181 through APA-186 were repurposed to be hospital ships before they were named. Ultimately those hospital ships were built on larger C4 plan and the six VC2 hulls were built in a merchant configuration.[2] APA-240 through APA-247 were named, but cancelled in 1945 when the war ended. With the special exception of USS Marvin H. McIntyre, the Haskell-class ships were all named after counties of the United States.


Most of the Haskell-class ships were mothballed in 1946, with only a few remaining in service. Many of the Haskell class were scrapped in 1973–75.[3] A few were converted into Missile Range Instrumentation Ships.

  • USS Gage, the last remaining ship in the Haskell configuration, was scrapped in 2009 at ESCO Marine, in Brownsville, Tx.[4]
  • USS Sherburne, which was converted and renamed USS Range Sentinel, lasted until she was scrapped in 2012.
  • SS Rutland Victory was sold to a private company and sank on February 13, 1976 600 miles East of Tokyo, Japan.
USS Rutland lowering an LCM off Iwo Jima in 1945

Notable incidents[edit]

  • USS Hinsdale (APA-120) had Kamikaze attack damage on 1 April 1945 at Okinawa. Over 15 men were killed. The extensive engine room damage was later repaired.
  • USS La Grange (APA-124) on 13 August 1945 damaged in last kamikaze attack of WW2, 21 sailors killed and 89 wounded.
  • USS Colbert (APA-145) had mine damage on 17 September 1945, off Okinawa, this caused the death of three men and damaged the ship extensively.
  • USS Telfair (APA-210) on 2 April 1945 was hit by kamikaze attack, the plane hit the side of the ship then dropped into the sea. She was later repaired.

In fiction[edit]

The 1956 movie Away All Boats presents operations on an attack transport. It was based on a popular novel of the same name, written by an officer who served on one during World War 2.[5]

The opening chapters of the novel "Cinderella Liberty" were set on the APA USS Begonia.

See also[edit]



  1. ^ USS Lanier (APA-125) Deck Log, September 1945.
  2. ^ Friedman, Norman (2002). U.S. Amphibious Ships and Craft. Naval Institute Press. p. 190. ISBN 978-1-55750-250-6. Retrieved 2009-07-13.
  3. ^ "Sister Ship Display". Archived from the original on 2011-07-21. Retrieved 2006-09-23.
  4. ^ "PMARS is currently down for maintainence [sic]". Archived from the original on 2012-03-04. Retrieved 2010-08-16.

External links[edit]