Online Library of Selected Images:
-- U.S. NAVY SHIPS --

USS Agamemnon (ID # 3004), 1917-1919.
Formerly S.S. Kaiser Wilhelm II (German Passenger Steamship, 1903)

Kaiser Wilhelm II, a 19,361 gross ton passenger steamer built at Stettin, Germany, was completed in the spring of 1903. Designed for high speed trans-Atlantic service, she won the Blue Ribband for the fastest crossing in 1906. In the years before the outbreak of World War I, she made regular trips between Germany and New York, carrying passengers both prestigeous (in first class) and profitable (in the much more austere steerage). Kaiser Wilhelm II was west-bound when the great conflict began on 3 August 1914 and, after evading patrolling British cruisers, arrived at New York three days later.

For more than two and a half years, as armies exhausted themselves in the European trenches, Kaiser Wilhelm II remained inactive. She was seized by the United States Government when it declared war on Germany on 6 April 1917, and work soon began to repair her machinery, sabotaged earlier by a German caretaker crew, and otherwise prepare the ship for use as a transport. While this work progressed, she was employed as a barracks ship at the New York Navy Yard.

The U.S. Navy placed the ship in commission as USS Kaiser Wilhelm II (ID # 3004) in late August 1917. Her name was changed to Agamemnon at the beginning of September and active war work commenced at the end of October, when she left for her first troopship voyage to France. While at sea on 9 November 1917, she was damaged in a collision with another big ex-German transport, USS Von Steuben, but delivered her vital passengers to the war zone a few days later. Following return to the United States in December and subsequent repair work, Agamemnon again steamed to France in mid-January 1918 and thereafter regularly crossed the Atlantic as part of the massive effort to establish a major American military presence on the Western Front. The routine was occasionally punctuated by encounters with real or suspected enemy submarines and, during the autumn of 1918, with outbreaks of influenza on board.

In mid-December 1918, just over a month after the Armistice ended the fighting, Agamemnon began to bring Americans home from France. She made nine voyages between then and August 1919, carrying nearly 42,000 service personnel, some four thousand more than she had transported overseas during wartime. USS Agamemnon was decommissioned in late August and turned over to the War Department for further use as a U.S. Army Transport. Laid up after the middle 1920s, she was renamed Monticello in 1927 but had no further active service. Too elderly for use in the Second World War, the ship was sold for scrapping in 1940.

This page features and provides links to all the views we have concerning USS Agamemnon (ID # 3004), including those taken while she was named Kaiser Wilhelm II.

For additional views concerning this ship, see:

Photo #: NH 105375

USS Agamemnon (ID # 3004)

Pitching her forefoot nearly out of the water, while steaming through rough seas during a trans-Atlantic voyage, circa 1917-1918. An escorting destroyer is in the left distance.
Photographed by "HF Co".
The original image is printed on postcard ("AZO") stock.

Donation of Charles R. Haberlein Jr., 2007.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 58KB; 740 x 470 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 77162

USS Agamemnon (ID # 3004)

Photographed from USS Warrington (Destroyer # 30) during World War I.

Courtesy of Mr. Gustavus C. Robbins, 1973.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 54KB; 740 x 440 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 105395

USS Agamemnon (ID # 3004)

Underway, circa late 1918, probably in the vicinity of New York Harbor. She is painted in "dazzle" camouflage.
Panoramic photograph by E. Muller, Jr., New York.

Courtesy of the Naval Historical Foundation. Donation of Lieutenant General John T. Myers, USMC (Retired), 1945.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 117KB; 1200 x 525 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 91645

USS Agamemnon (ID # 3004)

Photographed from USS Mercury (ID # 3012), while underway at sea in 1918.

Courtesy of James Russell, 1980.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 85KB; 740 x 555 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 103101

USS Agamemnon (ID # 3004)

Halftone reproduction of a photograph taken in 1918-1919, showing the ship in port.
The original image was published in 1918-1919 as one of ten photographs in a "Souvenir Folder" of views concerning USS Agamemnon.

Donation of Terri D. Lewis, 2005.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 67KB; 740 x 450 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 57482

USS Agamemnon (ID # 3004)

Steams into Boston Harbor, Massachusetts, circa late 1918 or the first part of 1919, while bringing the U.S. Army's 102nd Infantry home from Europe.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 62KB; 740 x 435 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 98558

USS Agamemnon (ID # 3004)

At the Norfolk Navy Yard, near Hampton Roads, Virginia, 15 February 1919.
Panoramic photograph, taken by the G.L. Hall Optical Co., Norfolk, Va.
Note steel and other construction material in the foreground. The patrol boat SP-1212 (ex-Inca) is on the pier at the extreme right.

Donation of the Norfolk Naval Shipyard Museum, Portsmouth, Virginia.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 112KB; 1200 x 250 pixels

See Photo # NH 98558-A for an image cropped out of the right 12% of this photograph.

 
Photo #: NH 106647

USS Agamemnon (ID # 3004)

Arriving in a U.S. East Coast port while bringing troops home from Europe, 1919.

Donation of Charles R. Haberlein Jr., 2009.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 110KB; 900 x 635 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 105715

USS Agamemnon (ID # 3004)

Being assisted by tugs in New York Harbor, 1919.

Donation of Dr. Mark Kulikowski, 2008.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 82KB; 740 x 535 pixels

 
Photo #: NH 105431

USS Agamemnon (ID # 3004)

Arriving at New York on 18 August 1919, bringing home from France Soldiers of the Eighteenth Field Artillery; Ninth Machine Gun Battalion; and Machine Gun Supply Companies of the 38th Infantry.
Panoramic photograph by Head-Mayberry, New York City.
A U.S. Army tug (left center foreground) is assisting the ship into her berth.

Donation of Dr. Mark Kulikowski, 2007.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command Photograph.

Online Image: 104KB; 1200 x 500 pixels

 


For higher resolution images see: Obtaining Photographic Reproductions

To the best of our knowledge, the pictures referenced here are all in the Public Domain, and can therefore be freely downloaded and used for any purpose.



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