Stuff You Should Know
The USS Mintaka was a Crater-class cargo ship in the service of the US Navy during World War II. Operated by the US Coast Guard, the ship delivered troops and various types of cargo in the Asiatic-Pacific Theater. Originally laid down in February 1943 as Liberty Ship SS Ansel Briggs by California Shipbuilding Corporation at Terminal Island, Los Angeles, the ship carried out several missions in New Zealand and Alaska before it was converted to a cargo ship at Portland, Oregon in December 1943. After its conversion, the ship transported cargo and troops in the staging areas in New Caledonia, New Zealand, New Hebrides, and several bases in the Admiralties, Fijis, and the Solomons. After joining a convoy, the USS Mintaka sailed for Okinawa with troops and cargo and despite numerous Japanese air attacks, the ship successfully completed the task. After the war, the ship was returned to the War Shipping Administration and placed in the National Defense Reserve Fleet at Suisun Bay, California. In March 1968, the ship was sold for scrapping to Union Minerals and Alloys Co. The USS Mintaka received one battle star for the service brought to the country during World War II.