General Baron DeKalb was born in Huittendorf, Bavaria, Germany in 1721. In 1768 he visited the American colonies on a secret mission for the French government, and on the outbreak of the Revolution volunteered his services to the Americans. Given the rank of Major-General by Congress, 15 September 1777, he served at Camden, S.C., with General Gates, and gave distinguished aid to the American cause before being mortally wounded while fighting at the head of his troops 16 August 1780. He died 3 days later.
(AP: dp. 14,180; l. 506'6"- b. 55'6"; dr. 26'; a. 16 k.; cpl. 534; a. 8 5", 6 3")
DeKalb (No. 3010), a transport, was launched 18 June 1901 by Vulcan Co., Stettin, Germany, as Prinz Eitel Friedrich. She put in to Norfolk 11 March 1915 for repairs, and failing to leave in the time prescribed by international law, was interned in April and moved to Philadelphia. When the United States entered World War I, she was seized by Customs officials and transferred to the Navy. Reconditioned and refitted as a troop transport, she was renamed DeKalb, and commissioned 12 May 1917, Commander W. R. Gherardi in command.
DeKalb was assigned to the Cruiser and Transport Force, Atlantic Fleet, and on 14 June 1917 sailed in the convoy carrying the first troops of the American Expeditionary Forces to France. In the next 18 months DeKalb made 11 such voyages, carrying 11,334 soldiers safely. With the end of the war, she continued her transport duty returning 20,332 troops from Europe in eight voyages. On 6 September 1919 she was turned over to the Commandant, 3d Naval District. She was decommissioned 22 September 1919 and returned to the Shipping Board for disposal the following day.