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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORICAL CENTER
805 KIDDER BREESE SE -- WASHINGTON NAVY YARD
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Western Comet

 

(Freighter: dp. 12,185; l. 423'9"; b. 54'0"; dph. 29'9"; dr. 24'0" (mean); s. 10.5 k.; cpl. 109; a. 1 4", 1 3")

 

Western Comet—a single-screw, steel-hulled freighter built under a United States Shipping Board contract under the name Argonne for the French Compagnie Generale—was launched on 23 July 1918 at Portland, Oreg., by the Northwest Steel Co.; acquired by the Navy on 22 September 1918 and designated Id. No. 3569; and commissioned, Lt. Comdr. Walter Tinn, UNSRF, in command.

 

Assigned to the Naval Overseas Transportation Service, Western Comet got underway on 2 October for the east coast with a cargo of flour. Proceeding via the Panama Canal, she arrived at New York on 31 October and loaded 24 trucks. Getting underway again on 11 November—the day the armistice was signed ending hostilities in World War I—the cargo vessel reached Le Havre, France, on 28 November. There, she took on board 1,400 tons of Army cargo and sailed for home on New Year's Day 1919. En route to New York, she was forced to put into Bermuda on 19 January to correct turbine trouble. The cargo vessel got underway once more on 5 February and proceeded in company with Mohave (Tug No. 15) to New York on 7 February.

 

Decommissioned at New York on 1 March 1919, Western Comet was returned on the same day to the Shipping Board which retained custody of the vessel until she was abandoned in 1933.