(ScStr: dp. 11,500 (n.); l. 440' (reg.); b. 55.7'; dr. 27'; dph. 34'; s. 15 k.; cpl. 322; a. 4 6", 2 1-pdrs., 2 mg.)
Zeelandia (Id. No. 2507)—a steamer constructed in 1910 by A. Stephens & Sons, Ltd., at Glasgow, Scotland—was operated in transatlantic service by the Koninklijke Hollandsche Lloyd lines until March 1918 when she was chartered by the Navy. The ship was placed in commission at New York on 3 April 1918, Comdr. Robert Henderson in command.
Assigned to the Newport News Division of the Transport Force, Zeelandia carried troops across the Atlantic during the remaining months of World War I. She made five round-trip voyages to French ports between commissioning and Armistice Day, 11 November 1918. During those voyages, she carried a total of 8,349 passengers—mostly troops—to Europe. Though she claimed to have sighted and engaged German U-boats on several occasions during her wartime service, only one encounter was verified as definitely submarine. That event occurred at dusk on 31 August when a submarine surfaced to attack the convoy in which she cruised. The attacker, however, could not press home his attack because of zigzag tactics and a moderately strong escort.
The steamer remained in naval service between 11 November 1918 and 31 July 1919, making seven voyages between Europe and America returning troops home after the war. During those voyages, she repatriated 15,737 American soldiers and carried 3,170 passengers to Europe. On 31 July 1919, she was transferred to the custody of the Commandant, 3d Naval District for disposal. She was finally placed out of commission on 6 October 1919, was struck from the Navy list the same day, and was simultaneously returned to her owner.