Stuff You Should Know
USS Eridanus (AK-92) was a Crater-class cargo ship that served the US Navy in World War II, manned by a US Coast Guard crew. The ship’s mission was to deliver goods and equipment in the war zone. Launched in April 1943 by Permanente Metals Corporation, the ship was acquired by the US Navy two weeks later and commissioned under Lieutenant Commander F. W. Johnson’s command.
The vessel spent its wartime carrying cargo and passengers between US West Coast ports and the Hawaiians, New Zealand, the Philippines, and the Palaus, for the US Navy, but also for the US Marines and US Army. Its last task was towing a section of a floating drydock from Eniwetok to Hampton Roads, Virginia. The job was long and difficult, as the trip lasted more than 2 months.
USS Eridanus was decommissioned in May 1946, returned to the War Shipping Administration and laid up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, James River Group, Virginia. It was sold for commercial service to John P. G. Livanos, Greece in 1947 and run aground in 1955 while carrying a load of coal. The ship sustained heavy damage but it was repaired and resumed its service under the South Korean flag until September 1972 when it was eventually scrapped at Masan, South Korea.