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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.

    Shark Class Submarine
    Keel Laid 24 October 1933 - Launched 21 May 1935

  1. USS SHARK SS-174
    Commissioned 25 January 1936
    SUNK due to enemy action, approximately 11 February 1942

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 incarnation of the ship (ie, for each entry in the "Ship Name and Designation History" section). 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. USS Shark SS-174 Covers Page 1     (1935-1939,1983)



This section lists examples of the postmarks used by the ship. There should be a separate set of postmarks for each incarnation of the ship (ie, for each entry in the "Ship Name and Designation History" section). 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

Thumbnail Link
Postmark Image
Thumbnail Link
Cover Image


Locy Type


USCS Postmark
Catalog Illus. CD-2


First Day of Postal Service, postmark and cachet by John Gill


Locy Type



First Day of Commissioning. Add-on cachet by - Alton (Budd) M. Arrington


Locy Type
FDC 9v


First Day of Commissioning. From the Bob Reisinger collection.


Locy Type
FDC SLKb (44x6)


First Day of Commissioning. Cachet sponsored by the Officers & Men of the USS Shark. From the Bob Reisinger collection.


Locy Type
3 (AC-BTB)

DAY - 1935"


Navy Day. Cachet by - Leo A. Schupp


Locy Type
SLKb (44x6)


Straight-line marking on the Commissioning cover dated Jan 25 1936. Add-on cachet by - Alton (Budd) M. Arrington


Other Information

USS SHARK is presumed to have been hit by enemy naval gun fire in the vicinity of the Celebes Islands. Post-war Japanese records showed numerous attacks on unidentified submarines in SHARK's area at plausible times. At 01:37 on February 11, the Japanese destroyer YAMAKAZE opened fire with her five-inch guns and sank a surfaced submarine. Voices were heard in the water, but no attempt was made to rescue possible survivors

USS SHARK received the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal w/ one battle star for her World War II service.

NAMESAKE - Any of numerous chiefly marine carnivorous fishes which are sometimes large and voracious and have a streamlined torpedolike body, five to seven gill openings on each side of the head, a large oil-filled liver, a cartilaginous skeleton, and tough skin covered with small toothlike scales.

Six ships of the US Navy have borne the name SHARK - USS Shark (1821 Schooner), USS Shark SS-8, USS Shark SP-534, USS Shark SS-174, USS Shark SS-314 and USS Shark SSN-591.

The ships sponsor was Miss Ruth Ellen Lonergan, 12-year-old daughter of United States Senator Augustine Lonergan of Connecticut.



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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