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Yaquima (YT-17)


(YT-171: l. 113'0"; b. 25'0"; dr. 13'8" (max.); a. 2 .30-cal. mg.)

A noted female Indian chief whose name was later taken by the Yaquima Indians, a small tribe that lived in what is now the western part of the state of Oregon.

Dauntless No. 14, a steel-hulled, single-screw, diesel-powered tug, was built in 1940 by the Jacobson Shipyards of Oyster Bay, Long Island, N.Y., for the Dauntless Towing Line, Inc., of New York City. Acquired by the Navy on 6 January 1941, Dauntless No. 14 was renamed Yaquima and classified as YT-17, a harbor tug, on 9 January. Converted for naval service at the Portsmouth (N.H.) Navy Yard, Yaquima either was placed "in service" or was ready for service on 9 March. Other records indicate another "in service" date, 18 April 1941, which was probably the day that the vessel actually began her operations in the 1st Naval District.

She served a brief tour of duty at New London, Conn., from 15 July to 11 August and then resumed service at Portsmouth. The ship was equipped with a decompression chamber and minor diving equipment at that time, so it is likely that the craft was used as a back-up submarine rescue vessel. In any event, Yaquima performed tug and tow service at Portsmouth for the duration of World War II. During that time, she was reclassifled a large harbor tug, YTB-171, on 15 May 1944.

Subsequently placed out of service at the Boston Naval Shipyard on 3 December 1945, Yaquima was struck from the Navy list on 8 May 1946 and turned over to the War Shipping Administration for further disposition on 7 June of the same year.

Published: Tue Jun 29 16:25:18 EDT 2021