United States Navy

Submarine Tenders

USS Ajax

USS Ajax - in Manila Bay, Philippine Islands, with submarines B-2 and B-3 on board, after transporting them from Norfolk, Virginia. Photographed in late April or early May 1913, before the submarines were launched from her deck.
National Archives Photo NH-90172

9250 Built / Launched 1890 / ?
Length 387' Built By D. and W. Henderson and Co.,
Glasgow, Scotland
Beam 16' 6" Class Scindia
Draft 10' 4" Commisioned 5/21/1898
Speed (rated) 10.0kts Decommissioned 7/8/1925
Compliment 54 Disposition Sold
The second Ajax was built in 1890 by D. and W. Henderson and Co., Glasgow, Scotland, as Scindia; purchased by the Navy 12 May 1898; and commissioned, as Scindia 21 May 1898, Commander E. W. Watson in command. Following one voyage from New York to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, with coal (2 June - 1 July 1989), Scindia departed New York 12 October 1989 with a load of coal for Honolulu, Hawaii. After rounding Cape Horn she delivered her cargo (12 February - 18 March 1899) and proceeded to Mare Island Navy yard where she went out of commission 27 May 1899.

Recommissioned 23 December 1899, Scindia left Mare Island 18 January 1900 via the Philippines and the Suez Canal for Barry, Wales, where she loaded another cargo of coal ( 3-14 July 1900). Upon delivering the cargo at Cavite, Philippine Islands ( 2 November - 1 December 1900), she returned to Norfolk via the Suez Canal, arriving 1 March 1901. Scindia was renamed Ajax 1 January 1901. From 16 October 1901 to 20 February 1903 Ajax made two coal laden voyages to the Asiatic Station. She returned to the Philippines later in 1903 and remained there until returning to Norfolk in the fall of 1905. For the next four years she serviced the Atlantic Fleet and took part in the Round-the-World-Cruise of the Great White Fleet (16 December 1907 - 22 February 1909).

Out of service between 20 July 1909 and 30 April 1910, she then serviced the Atlantic Fleet until departing Hampton Roads, Va., 1 March 1913 for the Philippines. She arrived at Cavite 30 April 1913 and remained attached to the Asiatic Fleet for the remainder of her service. During World War I she towed the interned German steamer Elsass from Samoa to Honolulu.

After being out of commission, 20 April - 17 October 1921, Ajax was designated Receiving Ship for the 16th Naval District and remained on that duty until February 1924. During a brief period in 1923 she served as a submarine tender at Chefoo, China, and from February 1924 to June 1925 as an aircraft tender. Ajax was reclassified AG-15, 1 July 1924. She was decommissioned at Cavite 8 July 1925 and sold there 14 August 1925.

History from the Dictionary of American Fighting Ships.

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