Laid down by Portsmouth Navy Yard in 1920, the USS S-12 was a second-group S-class submarine of the U.S. Navy. It was sponsored by Mrs. Gordon Woodbury and initially had Lieutenant Francis S. Low in command. After duty along the northeast coast in 1924 and a visit to Guantanamo, Cuba, the submarine resumed activity in New England waters. The USS S-12 departed New London, Connecticut, and by sailing through the Panama Canal and California, arrived in Hawaii in 1925. Lurking aboard the submarine was asbestos, a naturally occurring mineral that is highly carcinogenic to humans. Everyone who served aboard the USS S-12 was exposed to asbestos by inhaling or ingesting the tiny fibers of this mineral. Exposure to asbestos is correlated with a wide range of serious diseases, including lung cancer, asbestosis, and mesothelioma. Thereby, veterans who were aboard the USS S-12 need to keep a close eye on their health. In 1945, the submarine was decommissioned and sold to Rosoff Brothers of New York City, who subsequently sold it to Northern Metals Company of Philadelphia. Eventually, the USS S-12 was scrapped.