USS PT-174, an 80-foot ELCO type motor torpedo boat, was placed in service in January 1943 as a unit of Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron TEN. On 24 May 1943 she was on board the civilian tanker Stanvac Manila with five other PT boats when that ship was torpedoed and sunk south of Noumea, New Caledonia. After great effort by crewmen, PT-174 was floated off the sinking tanker and towed to Noumea.
From mid-1943 into 1944, PT-174 participated in MTB 'Ron TEN's operations in the central and northern Solomon Islands. On the night of 1-2 August 1943 she fired four torpedoes at Japanese destroyers during an engagement in Blackett Strait, on the southern side of Kolombangara Island. In April 1944, her squadron was transferred to the Southwest Pacific area, where it operated along the coast of New Guinea and at Morotai. Later based in the Philippines, some of Squadron TEN's boats were employed in the Borneo campaign. PT-174 was one of these, and on 22 July 1945 she took part in a combined Motor Torpedo Boat and aircraft attack on Paloe Bay, Celebes, that caused considerable damage ashore.
Following the end of the War with Japan, most PT boats in the western Pacific were judged not worth the expense of shipping them back to the United States. Accordingly, in November 1945 PT-174 and many of her sisters were placed out of service and destroyed.
This page features our only views of USS PT-174.
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Photo #: NH 97975
Underway at high speed, during operations out of Rendova, Solomon Islands, in January 1944.
She has been fitted with a 40mm gun forward and carries Mark XIII torpedoes. Note camouflaged canvas covers over her midships machine gun mounts.
Official U.S. Navy Photograph, from the collections of the Naval Historical Center.
Online Image: 54KB; 740 x 615 pixels
Photo #: 80-G-58545
Operating in the Central Solomon Islands with other PT boats from the Rendova motor torpedo boat base, January 1944.
Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.
Online Image: 55KB; 610 x 765 pixels
Reproductions of this image may also be available through the National Archives photographic reproduction system.
Page made 30 June 2002