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USS Sturgis

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Photographer:William Edward Burton [View profile]Title:USS SturgisAdded:Jan 12, 2006
Photo Category: Auxiliaries
The USS Sturgis anchored in the Panama Canal in 1969. This ship was converted from a Liberty ship by the US Army and was the first floating nuclear power plant. It was anchored in the Gatun lake and provided power to the canal zone. It was shutdown (permanently) in 1976.

This photo does not meet current site standards because of the sloping horizon and quality of the image, but is retained because of its historical interest and the member comments made. Clyde, Deletions Admin, 30 August 2009.
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Photo Comments (6)

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Patagualino on Jun 03, 2012 02:31 (6 years ago)
A most interesting history. Thanks for posting.
ampermsn on Jun 02, 2012 23:19 (6 years ago)
I was one of the 1017 men trained to operate the Sturgis at Ft Belvoir VA. My class did not get to work on the ship as it was brought out of Panama while we were still in class in 1977. The original oil boilers, and power plants equipment was removed and the Nuclear power plant installed making it just a floating barge which could not move on it own. This was a grand effort to make large power generation portable. It is even more fantastic to understand that the ship was operated by enlisted men of the United States Army. Special training yes but just enlisted persons regular E5, through E9 stood watch each day 24 hours a day for years.
William Edward Burton on Jan 12, 2006 04:59 (12 years ago)
Thanks for that information Marc, amazing that such a plain looking ship could have such a history behind it and that it is still in the reserve fleet. It could be handy for providing electricity in an emergency.
Kind regards...Bill Burton...Hobart
Marc Piché on Jan 12, 2006 02:56 (12 years ago)
She is still in lay up at the James River Reserve Fleet location at Fort Eustis VA anchored and rafted to the SAVANNAH. Her hull is painted grey now but one can see US Army Corps of Engineers and name in evidence on her bows.

William Edward Burton on Jan 11, 2006 23:06 (12 years ago)
Hi Jose Luis, many thanks for that information, I have always wondered what it was used for as it does not look like a normal sea going ship. I shall update the name and description.
Kind regards....Bill Burton...Hobart.
José Luis on Jan 11, 2006 20:51 (12 years ago)
She is the US Army's floating nuclear power plant STURGIS. Built as the Liberty ship CHARLES H CUGLE at J A Jones Construction Co, Panama City, yard number 105. Conversion work commenced at Mobile in 1964 by Alabama S B & D D Co.
Jose Luis
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