Ammen (1925 USCG); CG Destroyer CG 8

April 14, 2020

Ammen (1925 USCG); CG Destroyer CG 8


USCGD Ammen (CG-8)

Builder: New York Shipbuilding Company, Camden, NJ

Commissioned (USN): 23 May 1911

Acquired (CG): 28Apr 1924

Commissioned (CG): 22 Jan 1925

Decommissioned: 18 May 1931

Displacement: 742 tons

Dimensions: 293’10" overall x 27’ x 9’5"

Machinery: Direct-drive turbines, 3 screws, 12,000 hp, 29.5 knots.

Complement: 6 officers, 82 men

Armament: 3 3"/50, 1 1-pdr.

Design & Service

A total of thirty-one Navy destroyers were lent to the Coast Guard for enforcing Prohibition. Adapting these vessels to service was thought to be less costly than building new ships. In the end the rehabilitation of the vessels became a saga in itself because of the exceedingly poor condition of many of these war-weary ships. In many instances it took nearly a year to bring the vessels up to seaworthiness. Additionally, these were by far the largest and most sophisticated vessels ever operated by the service and trained personnel were nearly nonexistent. As a result, Congress authorized hundreds of new enlistees. It was these inexperienced men that generally made up the destroyer crews. USCGD Ammen was one of the pre-World War I 742-ton "flivvers". All were capable of over 25 knots, an advantage in the rum-chasing business. They, however, were easily outmaneuvered by smaller vessels. The destroyers’ mission, therefore, was to picket the larger supply ships ("mother ships") and prevent them from off-loading their cargo onto the smaller, speedier contact boats that ran the liquor into shore. Ammen was among the first group of destroyers loaned to the Coast Guard. She was first originally stationed at Hoboken, NJ and then transferred to Stapleton, NY.

Operational Highlights

  • 28 Apr 1924 Taken over from US Navy at Philadelphia Navy Yard.
  • 22 Jan 1925 Commissioned at Hoboken, NJ; assigned to Division Two of the Destroyer Force.
  • 9 Apr 1929 Arrived at her new duty station--Stapleton, NY.
  • 18 May 1931 Decommissioned at Philadelphia Navy Yard and returned to the US Navy