S.S. City of Macon, a 5252 gross ton coastal passenger-cargo ship, was built in 1903 at Chester, Pennsylvania, for the Ocean Steamship Co. of Savannah, which operated a passenger and freight service between Savannah, Georgia, and New York. She was configured like many other coastal passenger ships of her era, among them her near-sister City of Savannah (ID # 4514), with a single smokestack, two raked pole masts, and a long, low superstructure extending from a bridge forward of amidships to the stern. In 1916 the ship was sold to the Barber Steamship Co., renamed Macona, and possibly reconfigured as a freighter by her new owner.
Taken over by the Navy and commissioned at New York as USS Macona (ID # 3305) on 19 August 1918, she sailed in a convoy on 25 August with a cargo of 4,470 tons of general supplies, which she delivered to St. Nazaire, France, on 12 September. She was then assigned to service in European waters, carrying a cargo of potatoes from Ireland to France for the American Expeditionary Force. In late December Macona loaded a cargo of Navy stores, then moved to Cardiff, Wales, to bunker for the voyage back to the United States. She left Cardiff on 15 February 1919 but had to stop at the Azores for more fuel before arriving at Hampton Roads, Virginia, on 12 March. USS Macona was decommissioned and delivered to the Shipping Board on 25 March 1919 for simultaneous return to her owners. On 18 January 1920 S.S. Macona struck a rock and sank near Gotenborg, Sweden.
This page features the only view we have concerning USS Macona (ID # 3305), the civilian passenger ship City of Macon, and the civilian freighter Macona.
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Photo #: NH 105223
USS Macona (ID # 3305)
In port, possibly when inspected by the Third Naval District on 19 August 1918. This relatively elderly former coastal passenger and cargo ship was in commission as a freighter from 19 August 1918 to 25 March 1919.
U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.
Online Image: 80KB; 515 x 765 pixels
Page made 11 September 2007