Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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Topic
  • Boats-Ships--Submarine
Document Type
  • Ship History
Wars & Conflicts
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Location of Archival Materials
L-7
(SS-46: dp. 456 (surf.), 425 (subm.); l. 165'; b. 14'9"; dr. 13'3"; s. 14 k. (surf.), 10.5 k. (subm.); cpl. 28; a. 1 3", 4 18" tt.; cl. L-5)

L-7 (SS-46) was laid down 2 June 1914 by Craig Shipbuilding Co., Long Beach, Calif.; launched 28 September 1916; sponsored by Mrs. William B. Forgarty; and commissioned 7 December 1917, Lt. P. M. Bates in command.

After shakedown, L-7 departed the west coast 20 April 1918, arriving Charleston, S.C., 10 June. Patrolling off Charleston until 15 October, the submarine finally steamed for the U-boat infested waters of Europe. Arriving Ponta Delgada, Azores, early in November, she joined Submarine Division 6 for antisubmarine warfare operations. However, the Armistice of 11 November 1918 ended World War I, and L-7 sailed for home on the 19th.

Following stops at Caribbean and Central American ports, the submarine arrived San Pedro, Calif., 14 February 1919, completing one of the best long-distance seagoing performances of America-s youthful submarine force. From 1919 to 1922, she remained on the west coast, experimenting with new torpedoes and undersea detection equipment. After a period of commission in ordinary early in 1922, L-7 was returned to full commission 1 July and sailed for Hampton Roads, Va., the same month. She decommissioned there 15 November 1922 and was sold 21 December 1925 to M. Samuel & Sons for scrapping.