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USS Altair (AKS-32)

Please see below for item level images and donated collections containing photographs of USS Altair (AKS-32).

Aberdeen Victory was laid down under a Maritime Commission contract (MC Hull 110) on 20 April 1944, at Portland, Oreg., by the Oregon Shipbuilding Corp.; launched on 30 May 1944; sponsored by Mrs. A. L. M. Wiggins; completed on 22 June 1944; and entered merchant service under contract with the Waterman Steamship Co., under whose flag she supported operations against Japan and took part in the conquest of Okinawa during May 1945. Transferred to the Navy on 7 July 1951, a little over a year after communist forces invaded the Republic of Korea, the ship was renamed USS Altair on 26 July; classified as a cargo ship and classified AK-257; and commissioned at Baltimore, Md., on 31 January 1952. She was converted into a Antares-class general store issue ship (AKS-32) in 1953. 

Assigned to the Atlantic Fleet Service Force, USS Altair  (AKS-32) was initially based at Norfolk, Va., and visited Annapolis (29–31 March) and Guantánamo Bay, Cuba (26 May–2 June), during the course of her shakedown. Recommissioned at Norfolk on 15 December 1953, the ship rejoined the Atlantic Fleet and, following her shakedown, reported for duty on 20 March 1954. A little over two months later, on 24 May, USS Altair (AKS-32) sailed for the Mediterranean, and reached the Hyeres Islands, off the southeast coast of France, on 10 June, for a week's stay.

In May 1955, her home port shifted to Barcelona, and she cleared Norfolk for her permanent station in the Mediterranean on 26 May 1955, bound for Gibraltar. In August 1962, her home port became Naples. USS Altair returned to the United States in October 1962, for overhaul but orders abruptly directed her to the Caribbean to replensih American warships enforcing the quarantine of Cuba. After the Cuban Missile Crisis subsided she proceeded to Boston, Mass., for an overhaul which lasted into the spring of 1963.

In June 1965, USS Altair's home port was changed to Norfolk; and she operated from that base until reporting to the Inactive Ship Maintenance Facility to Portsmouth, Va., on 31 December 1968. She was decommissioned on 2 May 1969 and transferred to the Maritime Administration on 1 May 1973.

For a complete history of USS Altair (AKS-32) please see its DANFS page.