Polar Star, a 4297 gross ton (8835 tons displacement) refrigerated cargo ship, was built at Baltimore, Maryland, as part of the World War I shipbuilding effort. Originally ordered by the British as War Venus, she was requisitioned by the U.S. Shipping Board and renamed before construction began. The ship was completed on 31 December 1918, and was commissioned as USS Polar Star (ID # 3787) at Baltimore on 4 January 1919. Polar Star sailed from Norfolk, Virginia, on 19 January 1919 for South America with a cargo of supplies for the Shipping Board. Between mid-February and mid-April she called at Montevideo, Uruguay; La Plata, Argentina; and Pernambuco, Brazil. Arriving at New York on 29 April 1919, USS Polar Star was decommissioned and returned to the Shipping Board there on 14 May 1919. She remained in Shipping Board hands until scrapped at Baltimore in 1930.
This page features the only view we have concerning USS Polar Star (ID # 3787) and the civilian refrigerated cargo ship Polar Star of 1918.
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Photo #: NH 105230
USS Polar Star (ID # 3787)
In port, possibly photographed when inspected by the Fifth Naval District on 6 January 1919. This refrigerated cargo ship was in commission from 4 January to 14 May 1919.
The ship on the left is USS Fort Wayne (ID # 3786).
U.S. Naval Historical Center Photograph.
Online Image: 52KB; 740 x 330 pixels
Page made 11 September 2007