Moving the US Troops in 1917-19

USS Mount Vernon

Updated May 15, 2013

This page is part of my web pages concerning the picture postcards of WW I troopships. This page describes the troopships themselves and a bit about their history.

I have a copy of a book entitled A History of the Transport Service by Vice Admiral Albert Gleaves, U.S.N. It was published in 1921 and describes the incredible effort needed to transport millions of American troops both over to France and back home again. Several tables and illustrations from the book are available from my Flickr account, by following the links on this page. This information may help if you are looking for a particular ship or wish to see the statistics behind this major war effort. Many of the ships shown on JWB postcards are present in these listings.

The contents of this book are available online: Online copy of A History of the Transport Service by Vice Admiral Albert Gleaves, U.S.N. You can download your own copy and learn more about this fascinating history, and the ships and men that were part of it.


Listings of Ships

The following images were scanned from the book mentioned above. These pages list the ships used to take troops over to France. These ships also took part in the return of the troops. Any of the German ships listed here were seized by the US after it's entrance into the War in 1917. (Note that other German ships were used to return troops, but those ships were given to the US as part of the post-War reparations.)

Ship Tonnage Nationality/Organization Number of
Turnarounds Made
Number of Passengers
Carried to Europe
Start Date of Operation
Aeolus 22000 Ex-German 8 24770 Aug. 4-17
Agamemnon 30000 Ex-German 10 36097 Aug. 21-17
America 41500 Ex-German 9 39768 Aug. 6-17
Antigone 15000 Ex-German 8 16526 Sep. 5-17
Calamares 10000 Am-Passenger 5 7657 Apr. 9-18
Covington 41500 Ex-German 6 21628 Jul. 28-17
De Kalb (Aux. Cruiser) 14280 Ex-German 11 11334 May 12-17
Finland 22000 Am-Passenger 5 12654 Apr. 26-18
Geo. Washington [George Washington] 39435 Ex-German 9 48373 Sep. 6-17
Great Northern 14000 Am-Passenger 10 28248 Nov. 1-17
Hancock 10000 Marine Transport 2 1438 ---
Harrisburg 15000 Am-Passenger 4 9855 May 29-18
Henderson 10000 Marine Transport 10 16352 May 24-17
Huron 15000 Ex-German 8 20871 Jul. 25-17
K. der Nederlanden [Koningin der Nederlanden] 13600 Dutch Chartered 3 6283 Apr. 4-18
Kroonland 22000 Am-Passenger 5 14125 Apr. 25-18
Lenape 7000 Am-Passenger 6 8975 Apr. 24-17
Leviathan 69000 Ex-German 10 96804 Jul. 25-17
Louisville 14000 Am-Passenger 4 9247 Apr. 27-18
Madawaska 15000 Ex-German 9 17931 Aug. 27-17
H. R. Mallory 11000 Am-Passenger 6 9756 Apr. 17-18
Manchuria 26500 Am-Passenger 4 14491 Apr. 25-18
Martha Washington 14500 Ex-German 8 22311 Jan. 2-18
Matsonia 17000 Am-Passenger 6 13329 Mar. 1-18
Maui 17500 Am-Passenger 4 11042 Mar. 6-18
Mercury 16000 Ex-German 7 18542 Aug. 3-17
Mongolia 26695 Am-Passenger 5 19013 May 8-18
Mount Vernon 32130 Ex-German 9 33692 Jul. 28-17
Northern Pacific 12500 Am-Passenger 9 20711 Nov. 1-17
Orizaba 13000 Am-Passenger 6 15712 May 27-18
Pastores 13000 Am-Passenger 6 9928 May 6-18
Plattsburg 10000 Am-Passenger 4 8776 May 25-18
Pocahontas 14500 Ex-German 9 20503 Jul. 25-17
Powhatan 17000 Ex-German 7 14613 Aug. 16-17
Pres. Grant [President Grant] 33000 Ex-German 8 39974 Aug. 2-17
Pres. Lincoln [President Lincoln] 29000 Ex-German 5 20143 Jul. 25-17
Princess Matoika 17500 Ex-German 6 21216 May 27-18
Rijndam 22070 Dutch Chartered 6 17913 May 1-18
Siboney 11250 Am-Passenger 7 20219 Apr. 8-18
Sierra 10000 Am-Passenger 1 1712 Jul. 1-18
Susquehanna 16950 Ex-German 8 18345 Sep. 5-17
Tenadores 10000 Am-Passenger 13 15698 Apr. 17-18
Von Steuben 22000 Ex-German 9 14347 Jun. 9-17
Wilhelmina 13500 Am-Passenger 6 11053 Jan. 26-18
Zeelandia 12950 Dutch Chartered 5 8349 Apr. 3-18


The same table as above, but sorted by the number of troops handled. This information may be of use to collectors, since there may be a relationship between the number of troops, and the number of possible postcards and letters purchased and/or mailed from these ships. Some of these ships carried very, very few passengers during the War.

Ship Tonnage Nationality/Organization Number of
Turnarounds Made
[SORT] Number of Passengers
Carried to Europe
Start Date of Operation
Leviathan 69000 Ex-German 10 96804 Jul. 25-17
Geo. Washington [George Washington] 39435 Ex-German 9 48373 Sep. 6-17
Pres. Grant [President Grant] 33000 Ex-German 8 39974 Aug. 2-17
America 41500 Ex-German 9 39768 Aug. 6-17
Agamemnon 30000 Ex-German 10 36097 Aug. 21-17
Mount Vernon 32130 Ex-German 9 33692 Jul. 28-17
Great Northern 14000 Am-Passenger 10 28248 Nov. 1-17
Aeolus 22000 Ex-German 8 24770 Aug. 4-17
Martha Washington 14500 Ex-German 8 22311 Jan. 2-18
Covington 41500 Ex-German 6 21628 Jul. 28-17
Princess Matoika 17500 Ex-German 6 21216 May 27-18
Huron 15000 Ex-German 8 20871 Jul. 25-17
Northern Pacific 12500 Am-Passenger 9 20711 Nov. 1-17
Pocahontas 14500 Ex-German 9 20503 Jul. 25-17
Siboney 11250 Am-Passenger 7 20219 Apr. 8-18
Pres. Lincoln [President Lincoln] 29000 Ex-German 5 20143 Jul. 25-17
Mongolia 26695 Am-Passenger 5 19013 May 8-18
Mercury 16000 Ex-German 7 18542 Aug. 3-17
Susquehanna 16950 Ex-German 8 18345 Sep. 5-17
Madawaska 15000 Ex-German 9 17931 Aug. 27-17
Rijndam 22070 Dutch Chartered 6 17913 May 1-18
Antigone 15000 Ex-German 8 16526 Sep. 5-17
Henderson 10000 Marine Transport 10 16352 May 24-17
Orizaba 13000 Am-Passenger 6 15712 May 27-18
Tenadores 10000 Am-Passenger 13 15698 Apr. 17-18
Powhatan 17000 Ex-German 7 14613 Aug. 16-17
Manchuria 26500 Am-Passenger 4 14491 Apr. 25-18
Von Steuben 22000 Ex-German 9 14347 Jun. 9-17
Kroonland 22000 Am-Passenger 5 14125 Apr. 25-18
Matsonia 17000 Am-Passenger 6 13329 Mar. 1-18
Finland 22000 Am-Passenger 5 12654 Apr. 26-18
De Kalb (Aux. Cruiser) 14280 Ex-German 11 11334 May 12-17
Wilhelmina 13500 Am-Passenger 6 11053 Jan. 26-18
Maui 17500 Am-Passenger 4 11042 Mar. 6-18
Pastores 13000 Am-Passenger 6 9928 May 6-18
Harrisburg 15000 Am-Passenger 4 9855 May 29-18
H. R. Mallory 11000 Am-Passenger 6 9756 Apr. 17-18
Louisville 14000 Am-Passenger 4 9247 Apr. 27-18
Lenape 7000 Am-Passenger 6 8975 Apr. 24-17
Plattsburg 10000 Am-Passenger 4 8776 May 25-18
Zeelandia 12950 Dutch Chartered 5 8349 Apr. 3-18
Calamares 10000 Am-Passenger 5 7657 Apr. 9-18
K. der Nederlanden [Koningin der Nederlanden] 13600 Dutch Chartered 3 6283 Apr. 4-18
Sierra 10000 Am-Passenger 1 1712 Jul. 1-18
Hancock 10000 Marine Transport 2 1438 ---


Seized German Liners

A number of German ocean liners were interned by the US at the start of the European war (1914). They were seized when the US entered the war (1917) and converted to troopships as quickly as possible, since the US did not have sufficient capacity to carry troops. The ships were renamed from their German names, when appropriate. The listings are headed by the city in which they were interned.


NEW YORK
Former Ship Name New Ship Name Tonnage
Grosser Kurfurst Aeolus 13102
Kaiser Wilhelm II Agamemnon 19361
George Washington Agamemnon 19361
Frederich der Grosse Huron 10771
Vaterland Leviathan 52820
Koenig Wilhelm Madawaska 9410
Barbarossa Mercury 10984
Prinzess Irene Pocahontas 10893
Hamburg Powhatan 10531
President Grant President Grant 33000 (book in error gives 18172)
President Lincoln President Lincoln 29000 (book in error gives 18172)

BOSTON
Former Ship Name New Ship Name Tonnage
Amerika America 22622
Cincinnati Covington 16339
Kronprinzessin Cecile Mount Vernon 19503

NORFOLK
Former Ship Name New Ship Name Tonnage
Neckar Antigone 9835
Rheim Susquehanna 7797

PHILADELPHIA
Former Ship Name New Ship Name Tonnage
Kronprinz Wilhelm Von Steuben 14008



The following tables show the names of the ships, both the original German and U. S. renaming. NOTE that this table does not show German ships taken as post-War reparations.


Ex-German (Early) Troopship Names

Original German Name New US Name
Amerika America
Barbarossa Mercury
Cincinnati Covington
George Washington George Washington
Frederich der Grosse Huron
Grosser Kurfurst Aeolus
Hamburg Powhatan
Kaiser Wilhelm II Agamemnon
Koenig Wilhelm Madawaska
Kronprinz Wilhelm Von Steuben
Kronprinzessin Cecile Mount Vernon
Neckar Antigone
President Grant President Grant
President Lincoln President Lincoln
Prinzess Irene Pocahontas
Rheim Susquehanna
Vaterland Leviathan

The same table, but sorted by the US ship name:

Original German Name New US Name
Grosser Kurfurst Aeolus
Kaiser Wilhelm II Agamemnon
Amerika America
Neckar Antigone
Cincinnati Covington
George Washington George Washington
Frederich der Grosse Huron
Vaterland Leviathan
Koenig Wilhelm Madawaska
Barbarossa Mercury
Kronprinzessin Cecile Mount Vernon
Prinzess Irene Pocahontas
Hamburg Powhatan
President Grant President Grant
President Lincoln President Lincoln
Rheim Susquehanna
Kronprinz Wilhelm Von Steuben

Foreign Ships

A number of foreign ships were also used to move US troops to and from France.

Ship Name Nationality
Kursk British
Czar British
Czaritza British
Dwinsk British
Vauban British
Caserta Italian
Dante Alighieri Italian
Duca D'Aosta Italian
Duca Degli Abruzzi Italian
Re D'Italia Italian
America Italian
Patria French
France French
Lutetia French
Sobral Brazilian

Ships Used for Troop Returning Only

These lists are long, so they have been moved to their own web page. See: ships used to return American troops after the First World War.





Some images are available of these ships. The Naval Historical Center keeps a list of all known ships used by, or part of, the U. S. Navy. The links to some of their ship images follow:



Copyright©1996 - 2013 Robert Swanson

More Links



Valid XHTML 1.0!