(ScStr: t. 9,950; 1. 410'; b. 56'; dph. 29'6"; dr. 27'6%"; s. 10.5 k.; cpl. 114; a. 1 5", 1 3")
The first Tiger (Id. No. 1640), a single-screw, steam freighter built at San Francisco, Calif., by the Union Iron Works, was completed in June 1917 and operated as a merchant ship by the Standard Transportation Co., of Delaware, until chartered by the War Department on 12 November 1917. The ship was fitted out at New York for the Army Transportation Service, received a Navy armed guard on 30 November, and carried supplies to France for the American Expeditionary Force through the autumn of 1918. On 23 December at Norfolk, Va., the ship was transferred to the Navy Department and commissioned the same day.
Assigned to the Naval Overseas Transportation Service and refitted for naval service, Tiger took on a cargo of food and general Army supplies and departed Hampton Roads on 9 January 1919, bound for France. The ship reached Le Havre on the 24th and discharged her cargo. After voyage repairs, she got underway on 7 February and proceeded, via Norfolk, to New York where she arrived on 3 March. There, she was inspected and found suitable for conversion to a troop transport. On 7 March 1919, the ship was transferred to the United States Cruiser and Transport Force to assist in the formidable task of returning some two million American troops from Europe. By mid-summer, most of the doughboys had been returned; and Tiger was transferred to the 3d Naval District on 29 July. The ship was decommissioned on 23 August and returned to her owner the same day.