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Ramapo (AO-12)


A river that flows through southern New York and northern New Jersey.

(AO-12: displacement 16,800 (full load); length 477'10"; beam 60'; draft 26'2"(mean); speed 11.2 knots; complement 90; armament 2 5-inch; class Patoka)

Ramapo (AO-12), built under U.S. Shipping Board contract, was laid down on 16 January 1919 at Newport News, Va., by the Newport News Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Co.; launched on 11 September 1919; and commissioned on 15 November 1919, Lt. Cmdr. J. D. Smith, USNRF, in command.

Assigned to Caribbean shuttle runs after commissioning, Ramapo carried petroleum products from Port Arthur, Tex., to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and the Panama Canal Zone until April 1920. Then she extended her range and through 1921 delivered fuel to ships and bases on the gulf and east coasts and in European waters. Transferred to the Pacific in 1922, Ramapo carried oil to ships and stations of the Pacific Fleet and made occasional trips to the Canal Zone and to the east coast until mid-1928, when she began to supply the Asiatic Fleet on a regular schedule. Beginning on 21 June, she carried oil from San Pedro to the Philippines and China and, for the next nine years, averaged four round-trips annually. En route she performed collateral duties as a survey ship and collected data in central and western Pacific island groups for the Hydrographic Office.

In late 1937, Ramapo briefly interrupted her transpacific runs to discharge oil to ships and stations in the Aleutians, then resumed runs to the Orient, continuing them until the spring of 1941 when she was shifted to Hawaiian shuttle service. At Pearl Harbor when the Japanese attacked on 7 December, the tanker returned to San Pedro and made two round-trips to Bora Bora before resuming Alaskan shuttle runs. Arriving at Kodiak on  29 July 1942 on her first such run since 1937, she plied between Port Townsend and various mainland and Aleutian stations throughout World War II, completing her last run at Seattle on 23 September 1945. On the 27th, she steamed south and on the 30th reported at San Francisco for inactivation.

Decommissioned on 10 January 1946, Ramapo was stricken from the Navy Register on 21 January and transferred to the Maritime Commission on 1 July.

Ramapo received one battle star for her World War II service.

16 September 2005

Published: Tue Jan 12 11:46:42 EST 2016