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Ship Name and Designation History

This section lists the names and designations that the ship had during its lifetime. The list is in chronological order.

    Balao Class Submarine
    Keel Laid February 25 1943 - Launched October 31 1943

    Commissioned March 8 1944 - Decommissioned February 2 1946
    Laid up in Pacific Reserve Fleet
    Converted to Submarine Transport (SSP), While in reserve

    Recommissioned November 2 1948

    Redesignated Transport Submarine (ASSP) January 31 1950

    Redesignated Submarine Transport (APSS) October 24 1956
    Decommissioned June 30 1960
    Recommissioned October 20 1961

    Reclassified Amphibious Transport Submarine (LPSS) January 1969
    Decommissioned February 20 1970
    Laid up in Atlantic Reserve Fleet

    Struck from Naval Register March 15 1977
    Sunk as target July 8 1978 off Newport, R.I.

Naval Covers

This section lists active links to the pages displaying covers associated with the ship. There should be a separate set of pages for each name of the ship (for example, Bushnell AG-32 / Sumner AGS-5 are different names for the same ship so there should be one set of pages for Bushnell and one set for Sumner). Covers should be presented in chronological order (or as best as can be determined).

Since a ship may have many covers, they may be split among many pages so it doesn't take forever for the pages to load. Each page link should be accompanied by a date range for covers on that page.

  1. Covers Page 1     (DATE RANGE)



This section lists examples of the postmarks used by the ship. There should be a separate set of postmarks for each name and/or commissioning period. Within each set, the postmarks should be listed in order of their classification type. If more than one postmark has the same classification, then they should be further sorted by date of earliest known usage.

A postmark should not be included unless accompanied by a close-up image and/or an image of a cover showing that postmark. Date ranges MUST be based ONLY ON COVERS IN THE MUSEUM and are expected to change as more covers are added.
>>> If you have a better example for any of the postmarks, please feel free to replace the existing example.


Postmark Type
Killer Bar Text

Date From
Date To
Thumbnail Link To
Postmark Image
Thumbnail Link To
Cover Image


Groton CT


Keel Laying


Groton CT



1st Commissioning March 8 1944 to February 2 1946


Machine Postmark

Groton, CT


Commissioning, cachet by the Argonauts, ANCS


Other Information

SEALION earned the Presidential Unit Citation and received five battle stars for her World War II service

Credited with sinking...
The 2386-ton Japanese Collier SANSEI MARU, June 28 1944 in Tsushima Strait
An Un-named Japanese Sampan June 30 1944, East China Sea
The 1922-ton Japanese Merchant Passenger/Cargo Ship SETSUZAN MARU, July 6 1944 off Ningpo, China
The 1034-ton Japanese Merchant Cargo Ship TAIUN MARU No.2, July 11 1944 off Korea
The 2417-ton Japanese Merchant Cargo Ship TSUKUSHI MARU No.2, July 11 1944 off Korea
The 1345-ton Japanese Minelayer SHIRATAKA, August 31 1944 Luzon Strait
The 8416-ton Japanese Troop Transport NANKAI MARU, September 12 1944 South China Sea
The 9418-ton Japanese Merchant Passenger/Cargo Ship RAKUYO MARU, September 12 1944 South China Sea
The RAKUYO MARU had some 1300 Allied POW's on board. Only some 160 were rescued by US submarines
The 27500-ton Japanese Battleship KONGO, November 21 1944 off Formosa
The 2035-ton Japanese Destroyer URAKAZE, November 21 1944 off Formosa
The 15820-ton Japanese Supply Ship MAMIYA, December 21 1944 South China Sea
The 1458-ton Thai Oiler SAMUI, March 17 1945 off Trengganu

NAMESAKE - Any of several large, eared seals native to the Pacific



If you have images or information to add to this page, then either contact the Curator or edit this page yourself and add it. See Editing Ship Pages for detailed information on editing this page.


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