Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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  • Boats-Ships--Support Ships
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  • Ship History
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Edward Rutledge
(AP-52: dp. 14,330 (f.); l. 475'; b. 62'; dr. 26'; s. 16 k.; a. 1 5", 4 3")

Edward Rutledge born 23 November 1749 in Charleston, S.C., was a signer of the Declaration of Independence and a statesman. At the time of his death 23 January 1800, he was Governor of South Carolina.

Edward Rutledge (AP-52) was built in 1931 by New York Shipbuilding Corp., Camden, N.J., as Exeter; transferred to the Navy from the Maritime Commission 7 January 1942; converted by Tampa Shipbuilding Co., Tampa, Fla.; and commissioned 18 April 1942, Captain M. W. Hutchinson, Jr., in command.

Edward Rutledge sailed from Tampa in convoy 13 May 1942 to Norfolk. She operated in Chesapeake Bay training soldiers for the invasion of north Africa. Departing Hampton Roads 24 October, she landed troops at Fedhala, French Morocco, on 8 November, and lay off the beach unloading her cargo with two lifeboats, the only boats remaining after the assault. On 12 November she was torpedoed by U-130 who slipped past the escort screen to sink three transports. Edward Rutledge's crew attempted to beach her but all power had been lost; she settled rapidly by the stern and sank with the loss of 15 men.

Edward Rutledge received one battle star for World War II service.