Azalea, 1891

April 22, 2020

Azalea, 1891

Any of a large group of shrubs cultivated for their bountiful blossoms of widely varied colors.

Builder: Jonson Foundry & Machine Company, New York

Commissioned: 25 June 1891

Decommissioned: 30 June 1933; sold

Displacement: 516 tons

Length: 154'

Beam: 24' 3"

Draft: 12' 4"

Propulsion: On inverted condensing fore & aft compound steam engine with one cylindrical singe ended Scotch-type coal-fired boiler producing 400 horsepower. Single screw.

Complement: 5 officers, 14 crewmen (1908)

Armament: None


The lighthouse tender Azalea was built at New York City in 1891 for the United States Lighthouse Service at a cost of $79,792.40. She was assigned to the Second Light House District out of Woods Hole, Massachusetts.

During World War I she transferred to the Navy on 16 April 1917. The Navy commissioned Azalea into service on 9 May 1917 and assigned her to the 1st Naval District. While in naval service Azalea salvaged navigational aids, adjusted buoys. and tended nets through the Armistice and on into 1919. Following the return of peace the tender returned to the Lighthouse Service in accordance with an Executive Order dated 1 July 1919.

She returned to duty in the Second Light House District. Azalea collided with the schooner Lavinia M. Snow off Pollock Rip in 1921 but was repaired and returned to service. She was decommissioned and sold in 1933.


Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships, Vol. I, Part A, p. 518.

Douglas Peterson, U.S. Lighthouse Service Tenders, 1840-1939 (Annapolis: Eastwind Publishing, 2000), p. 61.