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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORY AND HERITAGE COMMAND

 

Report of the Secretary of the Navy, 1898


Purchase of Auxiliary Vessels

Upon the passage of the bill appropriating $50,000,000 for national defense, the Department at once took steps for the purchase of auxiliary vessels. On March 12 a board was appointed and directed to communicate with the owners of vessels and obtain from them the terms on which they were willing to sell or charter, and to examine thoroughly such vessels as the Department might designate or the board consider desirable for the use of the Navy, giving particular attention to the condition of the boilers and engines, coal capacity, etc.

The following is the list of vessels purchased. In addition to these, the City of Pekin was chartered from the Pacific Mail Steamship Company at $1,000 a day for the transportation of supplies from San Francisco to Manila. Also four steamers of the International Navigation Company were chartered--the St. Paul, St. Louis, New York (renamed the Harvard), and the Paris (renamed the Yale)--at $2,500 a day each for the first two and $2,000 a day each for the last two. These four steamers were, at the request of the War Department, turned over to it to meet its necessities in the way of transporting troops--the Yale for sixty-five days, the Harvard for twelve days, the St. Louis for twenty-eight days, and the St. Paul for forty-eight days. The city of Philadelphia loaned to the Navy Department, for the nominal sum of $1, its ice boat No. 3 (renamed the Arctic). The yachts Free Lance and Buccaneer were also generously loaned for service during the war, without charge, the former by Mr. F. Augustus Schermerhorn and the latter by Mr. William R. Hearst.

Name before Purchase Renamed Date of Purchase Purchase Price Previous Owners
Columbia Wasp Mar. 26, 1898 $ 95,000 J.H. Ladew
Alicia Hornet Apr. 6, 1898 117,500 Henry M. Flagler
Almy Eagle Apr. 2, 1898 110,000 Frank Gallitin
Hermione Hawk Do. 50,000 Henry L. Pierce estate
D.C. Ivans Nezinscot Mar. 25, 1898 30,000 Moran & Co.
P.H. Wise Sioux Mar. 26, 1898 25,553 Do.
Winthrop Osceola Mar. 31, 1898 100,000 Staples Coal Co.
El Toro Accomac Mar. 26, 1898 40,000 Southern Pacific Line
Wilmot Potomac Apr. 14, 1898 125, 300 Ocean Towing and Wrecking Co.
Edward Luckenback Tecumseh Apr. 2, 1898 45,000 Luckenback & Co.
Walter A. Luckenback Uncas Do. 75,000 Do.
Atlas Wampatuck Apr. 4, 1898 65,000 Standard Oil Co.
Josephine Vixen Apr. 9, 1898 150,000 T.A.B. Widener
Mayflower Mayflower Mar. 19, 1898 430,000 Odgen Goelet estate
Soverign Scorpion Apr. 7, 1898 300,000 M.C.D. Borden
Creole Solace Do. 300,000 Cromwell S.S. Line
Diogenes Topeka Apr. 2, 1898 170,327 Thames Iron Works (London)
Not named Manly Apr. 13, 1898 24,250 Chas. R. Flint
Do. Somers Mar. 26, 1898 72,997 Schichau Iron Works, Elbing, Germany
Saturn Saturn Apr. 2, 1898 290,000 The Boston Towboat Co.
Lebanon Lebanon Apr. 6, 1898 225,000 Philadelphia and Reading R.R. Co.
El Norte Yankee Do. 575,000 Southern Pacific Co.
El Rio Dixie Apr. 15, 1898 575,000 Do.
El Sol Prairie Apr. 6, 1898 575,000 Do.
El Sud Yosemite Do. 575,000 Do.
Nictheroy—El Cid Buffalo July 11, 1898 575,000 Brazilian Government
Amazonas New Orleans Mar. 16, 1898 1,429,215 Do.
Almirante Abru Albany Do. 1,205,000 Do.
Merrimac Merrimac Apr. 12, 1898 324,000 Hogan Line
Niagara Niagara Apr. 11, 1898 200,000 Ward Line Steamship Co.
Sterling Sterling Apr. 16, 1898 190,000 Black Diamond Transportation Co.
Enterprise Modoc Apr. 29, 1898 30,000 American Towing Co.
No. 18 No. 18 Apr. 18, 1898 2,800 Philadelphia Transportation and Lightering Co.
Nashan Nashan Apr. 6, 1898 155,728 Frank Smythe
Zafiro Zafiro Apr. 9, 1898 87,597 China and Manila Steamship Co.
Alice Alice Mar. 26, 1898 19,000 John M. Worth
C.G. Coyle Choctaw Apr. 19, 1898 82,500 W.G. Coyle
Penwood Powhatan Apr. 8, 1898 42,500 Walsh & Doran
Fearless Iroquois Apr. 18, 1898 150,000 J.D. Spreckels Bros. Co.
Vigilant Vigilant Apr. 19, 1898 60,000 Do.
Active Active Apr. 18, 1898 75,000 Do.
Hercules Hercules Apr. 26, 1898 40,000 Standard Oil Co.
Southery Southery Apr. 16, 1898 100,000 Edward Luckenback
Venezuela Panther Apr. 19, 1898 375,000 Red D Line Steamship Co.
Yumuri Badger Do. 367,000 Ward Line Steamship Co.
Yorktown Resolute Apr. 21, 1898 475,000 Old Dominion Steamship Co.
T.P. Fowler Mohawk Apr. 23, 1898 44,000 Cornell Steamboat Co.
Thespia Hist Apr. 22, 1898 65,000 David Dows, jr.
Restless Restless Apr. 22, 1898 29,000 Hiram W. Sidley
Illawara Oneida May 31, 1898 60,000 Eugene Tompkins
Viking Viking Apr. 22, 1898 30,000 Horace A. Hutchins
Chatham Vulcan May 2, 1898 350,000 Merchants and Miners’ Line
Penelope Yankton May 20, 1898 125,000 H.E. Converse
Right Arm Pontiac Apr. 23, 1898 30,000 Merritt & Chapman
Philadelphia Peoria May 23, 1898 100,000 Philadelphia Pilot Association
Corsair Gloucester Apr. 23, 1898 225,000 Pierpont Morgan
Menemsha Iris May 25, 1898 145,000 Miami Steamship Co.
John Dwight Pawnee May 6, 1898 25,000 Geo. T. Moran
Justin Justin Apr. 23, 1898 145,000 Bowring & Archibald
Hortense Takoma Apr. 30, 1898 28,000 O’Conner & Smoot
Aileen Aileen May 2, 1898 55,000 Richard Stevens
Scindia Scindia May 12, 1898 267,657 Henderson Bros.
Comanche Frolic May 28, 1898 115,000 H.M. Hanna
Illinois Supply Apr. 30, 1898 325,000 International Navigation Co.
Kingstor Caesar Apr. 21, 1898 175,194 John Holman & Sons
Dorothea Dorothea May 21, 1898 187,500 Thos. McKean estate
Gov. Russell Gov. Russell May 11, 1898 71,000 City of Boston
East Boston East Boston June 2, 1898 57,500 Do.
W.H. Brown Piscataqua May 11, 1898 130,000 W.H. Brown
J.D. Jones Apache May 24, 1898 54,510 Merritt & Chapman Wrecking Co.
Celtic King Celtic May 14, 1898 340,900 Federal Line (London)
Rhaetia Cassius May 24, 1898 160,594 William Lamb
A.W. Booth Massasoit Apr. 25, 1898 30,000 Moran Towing Co.
Joseph Holland Hannibal Apr. 16, 1898 147,941 Francis Stanley Holland (London)
Atala Alexander Apr. 25, 1898 206,826 New Star Blue Line Steamers (London)
Eliz. Holland Leonidas Apr. 16, 1898 147,941 Francis Stanley Holland (London)
Harlech Pompey Apr. 19, 1898 111,929 Jas. & Chas. Harrison (London)
Abarenda Abarenda May 5, 1898 175,000 J. Graham
(Not known) Scipio Do. 85,769 Geo. P. Walford
Peter Jebsen Brutus June 3, 1898 215,000 L.F. Chapman & Co.
No. 55 Water Barge No. 1 May 25, 1898 24,000 Standard Oil Co.
Whitgift Nero June 30, 1898 215,000 McCondray & Co.
Norse King Rainbow June 29, 1898 176,576 Thomas Ronaldson
Enquirer Enquirer Do. 80,000 W.J. Conners
Inca Inca June 13, 1898 35,000 Frank B. McQueston
Huntress Huntress June 7, 1898 27,500 F.C. Fowler
Stranger Stranger June 9, 1898 75,000 Mrs. Mary Lewis
Kate Jones Seminole June 6, 1898 25,000 Boston Towboat Co.
Bristol Cheyenne July 8, 1898 20,000 J.J. Cummings
Eugenia Siren June 9, 1898 40,000 J.G. Cassat
Elfrida Elfrida June 15, 1898 50,000 Dr. Seward Webb
No. 295 Sylph June, 1898 50,000 John Roach & Co.
Shearwater Shearwater May 9, 1898 26,000 Henry W. Wolcott
Sylvia Sylvia June 13, 1898 25,000 Edward M. Brown
Hercules Chickasaw June 25, 1898 15,000 M. Revel
Confidence Waban Do. 20,000 Do.
Kanawha Kanawha June 7, 1898 50,000 John P. Duncan
Pedro Hector June, 1898 200,000 (Prize)
Port Chalmers Glacier July, 1898 340,550 Federal Line (London)
Titania Marcellus June 13, 1898 90,000 William Lamb
Refrigerating ship     247,704  
Lucilene Arethusa Aug. 12, 1898 218,992 Thos. S. Hopkins

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11 February 1998