(T-AK-281: dp. 15,199; 1. 455'3"; b. 62'0"; dr. 22'0" (max.); s. 19.7 k.; cpl. 87; a. none; cl. Norwalk; T. VC2-S-AP3)
In Roman mythology, Victoria was the goddess of victory; she was called Nike in Greek lore. The Civil War steamer of that name was named for her.
The second Victoria (AO-46) was named for the river in the western part of the Northern Territory of Australia.
The third Victoria (T-AK-281) was named for the city in Victoria County, Texas, established in 1824 and incorporated in 1839. The college of the same name was established in 1926.
The third Victoria (T-AK-281) was one of four "Victory Ships" transferred from the Maritime Administration to the Navy in the mid-1960's for conversion to fleet ballistic missile (FBM) resupply cargo ships. She had been laid down under a Maritime Commission contract (MC hull V-526) as Ethiopia Victory on 20 January 1944 at Richmond, Calif., by the Permanente Metals Corp., Shipbuilding Division, for the Agwilines snipping firm; launched on 20 April 1944; and sponsored by Mrs. Michael P. Novak. Eventually placed in reserve in the years following World War II, Ethiopia Victory was transferred to the Navy on 13 August 1964 and taken to the Philadelphia Navy Yard for conversion.
In her designed role, the ship was to provide complete logistics services to a deployed FBM tender. One of her holds was modified to carry missiles in an upright position; in addition, she could carry refrigerated provisions, submarine torpedoes, spare parts, and fuel. On 22 May 1965, the ship was renamed Victoria and classified as T-AK-281.
Entering service with the Military Sea Transportation Service (MSTS) in October 1965, Victoria operated with MSTS until that agency became the Military Sealift Command (MSC) on 1 August 1970. She presently serves under the auspices of MSC, Atlantic, into 1980.