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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORICAL CENTER
805 KIDDER BREESE SE -- WASHINGTON NAVY YARD
WASHINGTON DC 20374-5060

Online Library of Selected Images
Ships of the Spanish-American War--
U.S. NAVY SHIPS -- Smaller Converted Yachts

Fifteen of the twenty-eight yachts obtained for for Spanish-American War service were smaller vessels, most between 100 and 300 tons. Generally incapable of high seas work, and carrying an armament of a few small guns, these ships were mainly suited for local patrol duties. A few operated in the Cuban war zone, though none saw serious combat. The rest stayed in the waters off the U.S. east coast, where they assisted the old monitors and other limited-duty warships in providing a security presence against the slight risk of a Spanish naval attack.

A few of the smaller yachts, which were loans of wartime duration only, left the Navy before the end of 1898. The others continued to serve into the new century, with some lasting beyond World War I.

This page features views of six of the fifteen smaller converted yachts.

If higher resolution reproductions than these digital images are desired, see "How to Obtain Photographic Reproductions."

In all cases, clicking on the small photograph will prompt a larger view of the same image.

Photo #: NH 57751

USS Aileen (1898-1920)


In dry dock at the New York Navy Yard, Brooklyn, New York, while being converted for naval service, 17 May 1898.
Note light armor plate being installed on her hull amidships to protect her boilers.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 105,622 bytes; 740 x 625 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 53953

USS Free Lance (1898-99, 1917-18)


On patrol off New York City, probably in August 1898. Ship in background is USS New York (ACR-2).
Note small sailboat just astern of Free Lance.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 65,322 bytes; 740 x 615 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 53225

USS Inca (1898-1908)


At the Boston Navy Yard, Charlestown, Mass., 9 November 1898.
Large ships in background are USS Vulcan (center) and USS Wabash (behind sheer legs).
Note variety of rowing boats in left foreground.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 63,041 bytes; 740 x 580 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 43066

USS Oneida (1898-1915, 1917-18)


Photographed circa May 1898, possibly at Boston, Mass. Ship in right background is SS Chatham, which was converted to the U.S. Navy repair ship Vulcan at Boston in May 1898. Ship in left distance is USS Southery.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 75,480 bytes; 740 x 640 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 76524

Yacht Eugenia


Photographed 18 June 1898, while fitting out for Spanish-American War service. Her hull has been half repainted into wartime grey. This yacht was commissioned on 24 June 1898 as USS Siren (1898-1910).

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 102,715 bytes; 740 x 580 pixels

 
Photo #: NR&L(O) 2196

USS Siren (1898-1910)


At the New York Navy Yard, Brooklyn, New York, 8 July 1898. Another converted yacht is astern of her, and the receiving ship USS Vermont is in the left distance.
Note Siren's fancy tasseled awnings.

U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.

Online Image: 58,663 bytes; 740 x 625 pixels

 
Photo #: 19-N-19-16-10

USS Viking (1898-1899)


Off the New York Navy Yard, Brooklyn, New York, after being fitted for naval service, 21 May 1898.
Ship in right background is probably USS Aileen (1898-1920), another yacht converted for use in the Spanish-American War.

Photograph from the Bureau of Ships Collection in the U.S. National Archives.

Online Image: 73,280 bytes; 740 x 625 pixels

Reproductions of this image are also available through the National Archives' photographic reproduction system.

 
Photo #: 19-N-19-16-12

USS Viking (1898-1899)
, at left,
and
USS Hist (1898-1911)

At the New York Navy Yard, Brooklyn, New York, while being prepared for Spanish-American War service, 12 May 1898.

Photograph from the Bureau of Ships Collection in the U.S. National Archives.

Online Image: 68,271 bytes; 590 x 775 pixels

Reproductions of this image are also available through the National Archives' photographic reproduction system.

 

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24 July 1998