USS Oneida (APA-221)
|Name:||USS Oneida (APA-221)|
|Namesake:||Counties in Idaho, New York and Wisconsin|
|Laid down:||30 September 1944|
|Launched:||31 October 1944|
|Sponsored by:||Mrs Victor E. Cole|
|Acquired:||4 December 1944|
|Commissioned:||4 December 1944|
|Decommissioned:||27 December 1946|
|Struck:||1 October 1958|
|One battle star for World War II service.|
|Class and type:||Haskell-class attack transport|
|Tonnage:||150,000 cu. ft, 2,900 tons|
|Displacement:||6,873 tons (lt), 14,837 t. (fl)|
|Propulsion:||1 x Westinghouse geared turbine, 2 x Combustion Engineering header-type boilers, 1 x propeller, designed shaft horsepower 8,500|
|Boats & landing |
|2 x LCM, 12 x LCVP, 3 x LCPU|
|Capacity:||86 Officers 1,475 Enlisted|
|Crew:||56 Officers, 480 enlisted|
|Armament:||1 x 5"/38 caliber dual-purpose gun mount, 1 x quad 40mm gun mount, 4 x twin 40 mm gun mounts, 10 x single 20mm gun mounts|
|Notes:||MCV Hull No. 569, hull type VC2-S-AP5|
The ship was approved for construction on 26 May 1944, laid down 30 September 1944 by Permanente Metals Corporation of Richmond, California (MCV Hull No. 569) and launched 31 October 1944. She was acquired by the Navy on a loan-charter basis, and accepted and commissioned on 4 December 1944, Captain Arthur C. Geisenhoff in command.
World War II
After shakedown, Oneida embarked troops and sailed for Pearl Harbor on 30 January 1945, arriving 6 February. On 13 February, she was underway again, laden with troops en route to Eniwetok. From Eniwetok, she steamed to Ulithi and arrived on 28 February, joining the armada of ships at anchor there. As far as the eye could see, stretched the vast and growing Task Force 58 which was preparing for a drive into the Japanese home islands.
Transport of casualties
On 27 March, Oneida sailed for Guam carrying survivors of aircraft carrier USS Franklin (CV-13). The next day, she discharged the Franklin's marine air groups and picked up casualties of the bloody fight on Iwo Jima and headed back to Pearl Harbor. Leaving the wounded in Pearl, she took on board a large contingent of the 10th Army bound for Okinawa.
Invasion of Okinawa
Approaching Okinawa on 23 May, Oneida was ordered to stand off as the island came under attack from one of its frequent kamikaze raids. Within the first 24 hours of her arrival, Oneida witnessed 56 separate raids on the island. Finally on 3 June, Oneida was called in and discharged her passengers under continuing Japanese air raids.
Oneida departed Okinawa on 6 June and returned on the 24th with Army replacements and 8th Air Corps personnel. Discharging these, she took on board 1,050 Japanese prisoners, and in company with attack transport USS Grafton (APA-109), also loaded with prisoners, she sailed for Pearl Harbor. The prisoners were transferred to a camp in Pearl 13 July and Oneida was again loaded with Army troops.
En route to Okinawa, she made a stop at Ulithi and while anchored there received word of Japan's acceptance of unconditional surrender. With the status of her passengers changed to that of "occupation troops", Oneida proceeded to Okinawa, arriving 22 August.
From 5 September to 18 November, Oneida distributed occupation forces throughout the Far East, from Hollandia to Korea and China. From 18 November 1945 to 16 June 1946, Oneida participated in Operation Magic Carpet, returning veterans to the states and taking replacements overseas for occupation duty.
From 16 June to 27 December, Oneida performed services in local operations off the West Coast.
On 27 December 1946, she was placed out of commission, in reserve, at Long Beach, California. Struck 1 October 1958 from the Navy Vessel Register, Oneida was transferred to the Maritime Administration where she was still berthed at Suisun Bay, California as of 1970. Her final disposition is unknown.
Oneida earned one battle star for services in World War II.