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The Mothball Fleet / Kaiser Shipyard No. 3

USA

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The title of this page, - "The Mothball Fleet" -, might not fully be correct, since I believe that the ships shown here are NOT anymore part of the "Mothball Fleet", - but are ships waiting to be scrapped.
However, - before they ended up here to die, they most likely were part of the National Defense Reserve Fleet of "mothballed" ships in nearby Suisun Bay, and therefore I feel that it is not completely wrong to refer to them as part of the "Mothball Fleet".
Later, - when I find time to dig out pictures of the real "Mothball Fleet" -, I will ad them to this page - - -

The "Mothball Fleet" consists of laid up ships, that can be made ready for action in a short time, consisting of both warships and cargo ships of the United States Navy Reserve Fleet and the National Defense Reserve Fleet.

But the location is very interesting indeed!
The pictures are taken in what was once the famous Kaiser Shipyard No. 3 at Richmond in the San Francisco Bay.
This is where most of the WW2 workhorses, - the "Liberty"- and "Victory" ships -, were built in an astonishing number, - and in an incredible speed!
The yard turned out 747 ships during WW2, - a ship building record that has never been beaten -, and the shipbuilders here could turn out a complete ship in about two weeks time, - the record being only 5 days!
Incredible!!!!

When I passed this historic site in 1978, I saw no shipbuilding activities at this famous shipyard, but it looked as if they now scrapped ships instead of building them!
Most of the ships on my pictures can be identified, - there are Coast Guard cutters of the "Owasco" class, - "C1"  World War 2 standard ships as well as a real "Liberty" ship - - -
This was actually like passing a maritime museum of very high standards, and for a ship lover it would have been Paradise to be able to spend a day or two there for studying and exploring these famous ship types before they would disappear forever and take their incredible history with them - - -
 
 


1978-08-083
The nearest ship is the "Minnetonka" 67, - a Coast Guard Cutter of the "Owasco" class launched in 1945.
There is a sister ship of the same class behind her, - but I am unable to identify which one.
The bigger, gray painted ship behind the Coast guard cutters is the "Cape San Diego", - a C1-B type built during WW2.
(Photography by Karsten Petersen ©)
 
 
 


1978-08-084
Here a closer look at "Minnetonka" 67 and "Cape San Diego"
(Photography by Karsten Petersen ©)
 
 
 


1978-08-085
Ships, - left to right:  "Cape May", - "Cape Elizabeth", - "Cape San Diego", - all type C1-B standard ships.
Then comes the two "Owasco" class Coast Guard Cutters, - one unidentified, - the other one "Minnetonka" 67.
(Photography by Karsten Petersen ©)
 
 
 


1978-08-086
1978-08-085
Ships, - left to right:  "Cape May", - "Cape Elizabeth", - "Cape San Diego", - all type C1-B standard ships.
Then comes the two "Owasco" class Coast Guard Cutters, - one unidentified, - the other one "Minnetonka" 67.
(Photography by Karsten Petersen ©)
 
 


1978-08-087
1978-08-085
Ships, - left to right:  "Cape May", - "Cape Elizabeth", - "Cape San Diego", - all type C1-B standard ships.
Then comes the unidentified Coast Guard cutter.
(Photography by Karsten Petersen ©)
 
 
 


1978-08-088
This looks like a real "Liberty" ship. Unfortunately I cannot identify it.
Behind are "Cape Edmont" and "Fred Morris", - both of standard type C1-B
(Photography by Karsten Petersen ©)
 
 
 


1978-08-089
Here, - left to right -,  another shot of "Cape Edmont", - "Fred Morris" and the unidentified "Liberty" ship.
(Photography by Karsten Petersen ©)
 
 
 


1978-08-090
And again, - left to right -,  another shot of "Cape Edmont", - "Fred Morris" , -the unidentified "Liberty" ship.
To the very right, - a likewise unidentified lower hull of an almost completely scrapped ship.
(Photography by Karsten Petersen ©)
 
 
 


1978-08-090
Finally a stern view of "Cape Edmont", - "Fred Morris" and the unidentified "Liberty" ship.
(Photography by Karsten Petersen ©)
 

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Page initiated.:  Jan.15.2010