(Minesweeper, auxiliary: tonnage 117 (gross); length 96'4"; beam 18'4"; draft 5'9" (mean); speed 7.6 knots; complement 24; armament 2 1-pounders)
Vester -- a wooden-hulled freight boat completed in 1876 at Boothbay, Maine -- was acquired by the Navy from the Delaware Fish Oil Co. on 24 May 1917; designated SP-686; and commissioned on 2 June 1917, Ens. J.T.H. Anderson, USNRF, in command.
Assigned to the 4th Naval District, Vester operated on patrol duties until 21 October, when she was transferred to the district minesweeping squadron. Based then at the Section Base at Lewes, Del., the ship appears to have spent most of her active duty alongside a pier with her engines out of commission. After 11 September 1918, she was shifted to routine patrol duties when her antiquated single-expansion power plant would permit.
She remained thus engaged until decommissioned at Cape May, N.J. on 15 May 1919. Vester was sold on 15 January 1920 to Hayes and Anderton, of New York City.
18 January 2002