Probably a Chumash Indian word meaning "village," or "chief."
(Freighter: dp. 12,600; l. 416'6"; b. 53'; dr. 26'5¼" (mean); s. 10 k.; cpl. 70; a. none)
The first Zaca—a steel-hulled, single-screw freighter built under a United States Shipping Board contract and completed in 1918 at Oakland, Calif., by the Moore Shipbuilding Co.—was acquired by the Navy for duty with the Naval Overseas Transportation Service (NOTS); designated Id. No. 3792, and commissioned on 30 December 1918 at her builder's yard, Lt. Comdr. James J. Carey, USNRF, in command.
Following sea trials, Zaca loaded 7,446 tons of flour at the Sperry Mills Dock, Vallejo, Calif., and got underway from San Francisco Bay on 12 January 1919, bound for the east coast. While in the Canal Zone, the freighter took on board 41 passengers for transportation to Norfolk and transited the Panama Canal on the 30th. She arrived in Hampton Roads on 8 February.
Zaca spent a week at Norfolk replenishing and undergoing minor repairs before sailing for European waters on 15 February with her cargo of flour which had been consigned by the United States Food Administration for the relief of the hungry people of war-torn Europe. After arriving at the free city of Danzig on 19 March, she discharged her cargo and sailed for the United States on 4 April.
Proceeding via Rotterdam, Netherlands, and Plymouth, England, Zaca arrived at New York City on 29 April, unloaded her ballast, and was decommissioned on 12 May 1919. Simultaneously returned to the Shipping Board and struck from the Navy list on that same day, Zaca operated under the flag of the United States Shipping Board until the latter half of 1925, when her name disappears from shipping registers