Albert Gallatin, born in Switzerland 29 January 1761, emigrated to America in 1780 and began his political career eight years later in a conference held at Harrisburg, Pa., to consider revising the U.S. Constitution. The following year, he was prominent in the convention which revised the Pennsylvania Constitution. After serving in the Pennsylvania Legislature from 1790 to 1792, Gallatin was elected to the U.S. Senate in 1793. During the "Whisky Rebellion," he helped avert civil war by persuading an angry mob to submit peacefully. After serving in the U.S. House of Representatives from 1795 to 1801, he became Jefferson's Secretary of the Treasury and served with distinction in that post until 1814. His supervision of the Nation's finances was noted for frugal and efficient administration.
In May 1813, President Madison, upon receiving from the Tsar an offer of mediation to end the war with England, sent Gallatin to Russia as peace commissioner. Although the mediation effort failed, Gallatin remained in Europe to help negotiate the Treaty of Ghent which Henry Adams called "the special and peculiar triumph of Mr. Gallatin."
After the war, Gallatin, as Minister to France and later as Minister to England, worked assiduously to improve American commercial relations with the nations of Europe. In 1927, he retired from public office and devoted his talents to commercial activities and to the study of American Indians. He died at Astoria, Long Island, N.Y., 12 August 1849.
Counties in Illinois, Kentucky, and Montana were named for Albert Gallatin. The first Gallatin was named for Albert Gallatin; the second Gallatin was named for the counties.
(APA-169: dp. 14, 837; l. 455'; b. 62'; dr. 25'6"; s. 18 k.; cpl. 560; a. 1 5", 8 40mm.; cl. Haskell)
The second Gallatin was built under Maritime Commission contract by the Oregon Shipbuilding Co., Portland, Oreg.; launched 17 October 1944 sponsored by Mrs. Loran T. King of Portland; acquired by the Navy on a loan-charter basis 15 November 1944 and commissioned the same day at Astoria, Oreg., Comdr. Frank S. Dowd in command.
After shakedown training out of San Pedro, Calif., Gallatin departed San Diego 18 January 1945 with more than a thousand troops plus cargo. In the ensuing months she carried passengers and military cargo to ports throughout the Pacific, supporting the final blows which forced Japan to surrender. She visited Hawaii; the Marshall Islands; the New Hebrides; New Caledonia; the Philippines; New Guinea; and the Admiralty Islands. She sailed from the Philippines for the west coast and arrived San Francisco with nearly 1,500 weary war veterans 10 August 1945. Eight days later she headed west again with as many troops for garrison duty at Lingayen Gulf, P.I. During October she steamed to Japan with vehicles, stores, and advance elements of the Army's 25th Division which she landed at Honshu as occupation forces.
Assigned to "Magic-Carpet" duty, Gallatin carried nearly 2,000 marines and other military veterans home from the Philippines and Hawaii. She reached San Diego with her veteran passengers 20 November 1945, and then made another "Magic-Carpet" voyage to the Philippines which terminated at San Diego 25 January 1946. After transiting the Panama Canal, she decommissioned at Newport News, Va. 23 April 1946; was returned to WSA the following day; and was placed in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, James River, Va., where she remains.