Eagle IV (Patrol Vessel Converted Yacht)
A large bird of prey of the falcon family, noted for its strength, size, grace, keenness of vision, and powers of flight, chosen for the national seal of the United States of America.
The fourth Eagle, a yacht, was built in 1890 as Almy by Harlan and Hollingsworth, Wilmington, Del.; purchased by the Navy 2 April 1898 and renamed Eagle; and commissioned 3 days later, Lieutenant W. H. H. Southerland in command.
Eagle sailed from New York 17 April 1898 for duty with the North Atlantic Squadron on blockade and dispatch duty in Cuban waters. On 29 June she shelled the Spanish battery at Rio Honda and on 12 July captured the Spanish merchantman Santo Domingo. Eagle returned to Norfolk 22 August 1898 to be fitted out for surveying duty, her principal employment through the remainder of her naval service. She compiled new charts and corrected existing ones for the waters surrounding Cuba, Puerto Rico, and Haiti.
Troubled conditions throughout the Caribbean often interrupted Eagle's surveying duty and she gave varied service in protecting American interests. She patrolled off Haiti in January and February 1908 and again in November and December and off Nicaragua in December 1909. In June 1912 she transported Marines to Santiago de Cuba and Siboney to protect American lives and property during a rebellion in Cuba, and continued to investigate conditions and serve as base ship for the Marines until 1914. She also had gunboat duty with a cruiser squadron during the Haiti operation of July 1915 to March 1916 and was commended by the Secretary of the Navy for her creditable performance of widely varied duty. She then remained off Haiti to conduct surveys.
With American entry into World War I, Eagle returned to Cuban waters. She was attached to American Patrol Detachment, Atlantic Fleet, and throughout 1917 and 1918 was continually on patrol off Cuba, Santo Domingo, and the southern coast of the United States. From Key West, where she arrived 3 April 1918, she patrolled the Florida Straits and after the end of the war operated on target practice, and tactical exercises and maneuvers. Between 7 January and 15 March 1919 she made a cruise to Cuban ports and along the Gulf coast before being detached from the American Patrol Detachment 28 April. Eagle left Key West the following day for Portsmouth Navy Yard. She was decommissioned there 23 May 1919 and sold 3 January 1920.