The U. S. S. Susquehanna


The U. S. S. Susquehanna


Black and white image of a World War I United States Navy transport ship, the U. S. S. Susquehanna. Originally a German ocean liner, the S. S. Rhein, the ship was seized along with all other German ships then in United States' ports when the U. S. declared war on Germany in April 1917. She made eight trips through the dangerous North Atlantic waters, evading both German U-boats and mines, ultimately transporting just over 18,000 U. S. troops to France.
[front] [pen] U. S. S. Susquehanna, former North German Lloyd Line operated as S. S. Rhein. Seized @ Norfolk, VA. - April - 1917 - Accommodations for 151 officers - 2934 Men. Coal burner. Length 501 feet. Beam 58 ft. Draft 28 Ft. Speed appx. 14 knots. [lighter pen] About High Noon - Dec. 31, 1917, German 'Sub' surfaced off our Port bow--launched a torpedo directed toward the Susquehanna. They anticipated we would increase our speed. We couldn't so the torpedo crossed our bow. U. S. Destroyers dropped depth bomb-- presumably 'gottin' the 'sub.' Twelve German bodies floated to the surface, wearing life preservers. [arrow points to group of men gathered in lower part of upper deck, just down from front bow of ship] Christmas Day church service December 25, 1917, conducted by Chaplain Gilbert. Music by 'B' Co. Quartet. [arrow pointing to group of men standing in center of ship] Squad #5 , Co. B. 162nd, U. S. Infantry. [arrow points to center of ship, two men standing on top deck.] Colonel May - ? Captain West ? [darker ink, arrow pointing to crow's nest' area on rear mast.] 'Clerk' on duty during submarine attach - off the coast of France about High Noon - 'Maurie' Birkett. December 31, 1917. Aft Crows Nest (like a seat on the 50 yard line.)

Date Created




copy prints




Online access to this image is for research and educational purposes only. To inquire about permissions, order a reproduction, or for more information, please contact the Five Oaks Museum at


Still Image