Tuscaloosa (LST-1187) (q.v.) was named after a county and city in Alabama. She was laid down on 23 November 1968 at San Diego; Calif., by the National Steel & Shipbuilding Corp.; launched on 6 September 1969; sponsored by Mrs. Thomas F. Connolly; and commissioned on 24 October 1970, Comdr. Harry W. Kinsley, Jr., in command.
Following commissioning, Tuscaloosa was assigned to the Amphibious Force, Atlantic Fleet, with its home port at San Diego, Calif. Into 1980, the tank landing ship has alternated amphibious training operations off the west coast of the United States with regular, extended deployments to the Far East.
Tuscaloosa earned one award of the Meritorious Unit Commendation and four battle stars for Vietnam service.