Rear Adm. Alfred Thayer Mahan, born 27 September 1840 at West Point, N.Y., graduated from the Naval Academy in 1859 and served with the South Atlantic and western Gulf Blockading Squadrons during the Civil War. Later appointed President of the Naval War College, he served two tours, 1886‑89 and 1892‑93.
His widely admired study, “The Influence of Sea Power Upon History,” and his many other well reasoned and scholarly books and articles have made a major impact upon geopolitical thought and modern theories of world strategy and have established Mahan’s place among history’s great thinkers.
Having retired in 1896, he was recalled during the Spanish‑American War to serve on the Naval Strategy Board. Among his many activities during the years which followed were service as a delegate to the First Peace Conference at The Hague; as a member of the Board of Visitors, Naval Academy, 1903; with the Senate Commission on Merchant Marine, 1904; as a member of the Commission to Report on the Reorganization of the Navy Department; and as a lecturer at the Naval War College. He died at Washington, D.C. 1 December 1914.
(Destroyer No. 102: dp. 1,060; l. 314'5"; b. 30'11"; dr. 8'6"; s. 35 k.; Cpl. 133; a. 4 4", 2 1‑pdr. 12 21" tt.; cl. Wickes.)
Mahan (Destroyer No. 102) was laid down 4 May 1918 by the Fore River Shipyard, Quincy, Mass.; launched 4 August 1918; sponsored by Miss Ellen K. Mahan, niece of Rear Adm. A. T. Mahan; and commissioned 24 October 1918, Lt. Comdr. F. P. Conger in command.
After shakedown, Mahan operated off Cuba until May 1919 when she steamed to the Azores to become one of the guide ships for the transatlantic flights of Navy flying boats NC‑1, NC‑3, and NC‑4. Returning to Boston by way of Brest, France, 21 June, Mahan was converted to a light minelayer and was redesignated DM‑7, 17 July 1920.
With the exception of a curise to Pearl Harbor for maneuvers early in 1925, Mahan operated along the east coast, in the Caribbean and off the Panama Canal Zone for the next 10 years, During this time she participated in fleet training exercises; patrolled courses for international races; e.g., the International Six Meter Sailing Races of 1922 and 1927; assisted in salvage operations for submarines S‑51 (September 1925, off Block Island and S‑4 (periodically from 17 December 1927 through mid-March 1928, off Provincetown, Mass.); and conducted reserve training cruises in the Caribbean, 1928 to September 1929. Throughout the decade, in addition to her regular duties, she served as an experimental ship, testing new equipment for the Navy’s future use.
On 20 September 1929, she entered Philadelphia Navy Yard, where she decommissioned 1 May 1930. Struck from the Navy Register 22 October, she was sold for scrap 17 January 1931 to the Boston Iron & Metal Co. of Baltimore, Md.