Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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Alatna (AOG-81)

(AOG-81: dp. 5,720 (f.); 1. 302'; b. 61'; dr. 19'; s. 13 k. (tl.); cpl. 51; cl. Alatna; T. Tl-MET-24a)

A river in north central Alaska rising in the Brooks Range and flowing about 200 miles to the southeast to enter the Kayukuk River.

Alatna (AOG-81), a gasoline tanker specially constructed for service in polar regions, was launched on 6 September 1956 at Staten Island, New York, by the Bethlehem Steel Corp.; sponsored by Mrs. Wilma Miles; and placed in service with the Military Sea Transportation Service in July of 1957.

Manned by a civil service crew, Alatna carried petroleum products from ports along the Atlantic and gulf coasts and in the Caribbean Sea to scattered American outposts in both polar regions. For more than 15 years, the tanker and her crew struggled against snow, wind, and ice to support American military bases in the Arctic and American scientists in the Antarctic. On 8 August 1972, Alatna was placed out of service and laid up with the Maritime Commission's National Defense Reserve Fleet at Suisun Bay, Calif. As of July 1986, the ship was still there, in reserve.

Published: Thu Jul 09 15:48:14 EDT 2015