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  • DANFS (Dictionary of American Fighting Ships)
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Kilauea (AE-4)


An active volcano on the Island of Hawaii.

(AE-4: displacement 20,500; lenght 564'; beam 81'; Speed 20 knots; a. 8 3-inch; class Kilauea)

Kilauea (AE‑4) was acquired by the Navy 14 November 1940 while building by Tampa Shipbuilding Co., Tampa, Fla., as SS Surprise; delivered to Alabama Drydock & Shipbuilding Co., for conversion; and commissioned 16 May 1941, Capt. W. I. Causey in command.

Kilauea's dangerous, difficult, and vital service during World War II was to carry ammunition to ships and bases and to issue it to the users. She began operating 17 June 1941 out of Norfolk, serving combatants on the east coast, in the Caribbean, and building up the base at Argentia, Newfoundland. Aside from necessary overhaul, and a period as station ammunition ship in the Norfolk area October 1942‑January 1943, she continued American theater duty into 1943.

Kilauea was renamed Mount Baker 17 March 1943 to avoid confusion with a similarly named ship. 


Published: Mon Apr 10 12:08:10 EDT 2023