Zero Luther Tanner, born on 5 December 1835 in Warsaw, N.Y., was appointed acting ensign on 18 August 1862. During the Civil War, he served in bark Midnight and supply ship Rhode Island. On 1 December 1864, when the latter captured British paddle wheel steamer Vixen, he was placed in command of her prize crew; and, on 13 January 1865, he led the group of boats from Rhode Island which landed at Fort Fisher.
During the ensuing decades, while serving on many ships and shore stations, Tanner became a pioneer in and an authority on hydrography. He invented the Tanner sounding machine and is remembered for his book, Deep Sea Exploration, as well as for many articles expanding man's knowledge of the sea. Promoted to captain and retired on 29 June 1906, Tanner died at Washington, D.C., on 16 December 1906.
Pamina (AKA-34) (q.v.) was renamed Tanner and reclassifled AGS-15 on 15 May 1946.