(LST-898: dp. 1,625; l. 328'; b. 50'; dr. 11'; s. 12 k.; cpl. 266; a. 8 40mm., 12 20mm.; cl. LST-511)
Counties in 24 States.
LST-898 was laid down by Dravo Corp., Pittsburgh, Pa., 15 October 1944; launched 25 November; sponsored by Mrs. J. B. Mawhinney; and commissioned 29 December, Lt. D. W. Kallock in command.
After shakedown off Florida, she loaded cargo at New Orleans and departed 4 February 1945. Sailing via the Canal Zone, LST-898 arrived Majuro 12 March, then proceed to Saipan to prepare for the Okinawa invasion. Departing Saipan 12 April she arrived Chimu Wan, Okinawa, and discharged cargo on this strategic base which lay at the gateway to Japan.
Returning to Saipan 26 April, LST-898 shuttled troops and equipment among the Marianas, Philippines, and Okinawa during the remaining months of the war. Following the Allied victory in the Pacific, she operated in the Far East, transporting occupation forces and equipment until late November. From December 1945 to February 1946, the landing ship aided in the dismantling of Army bases in the Philippines. She remained in the Philippines and decommissioned there 9 May 1946. On 25 May she was transferred to the Army for cargo operations.
LST-898 returned to Navy control 1 June 1950 and for the next 3 months performed cargo operations for MSTS in Japan and Korea. The Communist threat to South Korea called for a buildup of naval forces to speed the flow of men and supplies into the conflict.
LST-898 recommissioned 28 August 1950, loaded troops and vehicles at Kobe, Japan, for the Inchon invasion, then sailed 10 September for the west coast of Korea. The veteran landing ship participated in the well-executed invasion at Inchon 15 September. The success of the operation prompted Gen. Douglas MacArthur to remark that "The Navy and Marines have never shone more brightly than this morning." After discharging troops and cargo, she provided emergency medical care for wounded Marines, then supported assault forces by shelling enemy positions ashore.
LST-898 supported operations at Inchon until mid-October; after Chinese troops entered the conflict, she redeployed U.S. Marines in northern Korea. From 25 October to 29 December, she evacuated Marines and Korean civilians from Hungnam and Wonsan to Pusan. From January to late April 1951, LST-898 continued supply runs between Japanese and Korean ports. Departing Yokosuka 24 April she arrived San Diego 21 May for overhaul and training exercises.
She returned Yokosuka 3 April 1952 for her second tour in the fight against Communism in the embattled Korean peninsula. Throughout the next 6 months, she ferried troops and supplies between Japan and Korea, returning San Diego 16 November. During summer 1953, LST-898 carried supplies to the Navy installation at Point Barrow, Alaska, remaining in the Arctic until early September. For the next 2 years the veteran landing ship alternated operations in the western Pacific with amphibious exercises off the west coast.
On 15 July 1955 LST-898 was named Lincoln County. From 1955 to 1960, she sailed for three tours with the 7th Fleet, made one cruise to the frigid Arctic to supply "Dew Line" installations, and participated in amphibious exercises off the west coast and Hawaii.
After serving the Navy during two wars besides sailing on many tours with the 7th Fleet to prevent incidents from enlarging into new conflicts, Lincoln County decommissioned 24 March 1961. On 31 August 1962, she was turned over to the government of Thailand under terms of the Military Assistance Program. At present she serves the Royal Thai Navy as Chang. (LST-2).
LST-898 received one battle star for World War II service and six for Korean service.