Naval History and Heritage Command

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Ailanthus (YN-57)

1943-1944 

Any of several small Asiatic trees characterized by bitter bark, pinnate leaves, and clusters of ill-scented greenish flowers.

(YN-57: displacement 1,190 (full load); length 194'6V2"; beam 34'7"; draft ll' 81/2"; speed 17 knots; class Ailanthus)

Ailanthus (YN-57) was laid down on 17 November 1942 at Everett, Wash., by the Everett Pacific Co.; launched on 20 May 1943; sponsored by Miss Billie Jean McNatt; and placed in commission at Seattle, Wash., on 2 December 1943, Lt. Donald B. Howard, USNR, in command.

The net tender completed fitting out and, during the second half of December 1943 conducted shakedown training. On the last day of 1943, she reported for duty in the 13th Naval District. On 20 January 1944, she was reclassified a net laying ship and redesignated AN-38. Early in February, Ailanthus moved north to Pleasant Island, Alaska, where she arrived on 4 February. Reassigned that same day to Service Squadron 6, Pacific Fleet, she began to carry out net laying duties.

Her career, however, proved very brief. On 26 February 1944, Ailanthus ran hard aground and suffered extensive damage. While still stranded, she was reassigned to the newly constituted Seventeenth Naval District (the Alaskan portion of the old Thirteenth Naval District to which she had originally been assigned). Ultimately declared a total loss, she was stricken from the Navy Register on 9 June 1944.

Published: Wed Aug 31 00:50:53 EDT 2016