(Commemorated by Pioneer Seamount and Pioneer Canyon off central California)

Characteristics: Steamer, built by Gas Engine & Power Company, Morris Heights, New York in 1918 as Bird-class minesweeper USS Osprey, cost $500,000, 950 long tons, 187ft long x 35ft beam x12ft draft, triple expansion steam engine, 1,400shp, 14kts. Along with Discoverer 1 and Guide, known as "Bird-boats" in C&GS service.

Log Period and Areas of Service: 1922-1941, Pacific coast, Alaskan waters.

Summary of Service

7 April 1922 - Transferred from US Navy at Boston, MA.

11 October 1928 - While surveying the Heceta Bank off Oregon, crew member, Seaman Earl Forsberg fell overboard and drowned.

1934 - Deep sea hydrophone developed on board, and successfully used to a depth of 5,100ft off southern California.

28 November 1934 - Took in tow disabled yacht off Point Vicente, CA.

20 December 1935 - Alongside at Long Beach, CA, and contained a fire which broke out on the pier until the fire department arrived.

There were other occasions on which she assisted ships in distress and the civil authorities.

Fate: 1941 - Returned to Navy, converted to rescue and salvage ship, ARS-2, renamed USS Crusader. Sold 1952.

Links: DANFS, NOAA History site, Wikipedia

Pioneer 05

Dressed overall for George Washington's birthday, Oakland, CA, possibly 1931 (Family of Captain John Ellerbee, C&GS)

Pioneer 2

Location and date not known

Pioneer 06

One of Pioneer's boats ashore and wrecked in the surf in Southern California, 1933 (Family of Captain John Ellerbee, C&GS)

Four photos taken at Dutch Harbor, Unalaska Island, 1940. Two of them show sister ship's Pioneer and Guide together. In the bow to bow one, Pioneer is believed to be on the right

Pioneer 04

(Captain Hubert A. Paton, C&GS)

Pioneer 03

(Captain Harry D. Reed, C&GS)

Pioneer 07 Pioneer 08

A general note on the sources.


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