Year Built
Official Number
Upper Clyde Shipbuilders
General Type
Specific Type
Ship Length
393 feet
54 feet
Mast Height
Net Tons
4330 tons
Gross Tons
2890 tons
Cargo Capacity
Draft, Summer
Draft, Lightweight
16.7 tons
Displacement, Summer
3540 tons
Displacement, Lightweight
3035 tons
Immersion, Summer
Immersion, Lightweight
Still in Govt. Service

Historical Narrative

The Maritime Administration's National Register Eligibility Assessment for USS Harkness, available in the Documents section, contains a detailed history of the vessel.

Photo Captions

1.) USS Harkness underway.  MARAD file photo.  Date unknown.
2.) USS Harkness underway, with an aircraft carrier in the background.  MARAD file photo.  Date unknown.

Vessel Name History



No Mission for this vessel

Historical Documents
Name Expand Download


Event: Transfer
Date: 4/30/1971

"The Harkness was turned over to the Military Sealift Command (MSC), formerly the Military Sea Transportation Service, in a ceremony at the Boston Navy Yard on April 30, 1971"
Event: Arrival
Date: 11/1/1973

"In November 1973, while working in Turkish waters, the ship made a courtesy visit to the Russian Black Seaport of Novorossisk"
Event: Public Viewing
Date: 7/1/1976

"During the bicentennial celebrations in July 1976, the Harkness was opened to the public at Port Canaveral, Florida"
Event: Service
Date: 8/1/1984

"Between August and October 1984 the Harkness participated in Operation Intense Look, an airborne search for mines in the Gulf of Suez and the Red Sea in support of the governments of Egypt and Saudi Arabia."
Event: Service
Date: 1/1/1990

Harkness operated in the Persian Gulf in support of Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm.
Event: Deactivation
Date: 2/13/1993

The Harkness was deactivated.
Event: Entry
Date: 3/29/1993

Event: Transfer
Date: 2/16/1994

"On February 16, 1994 it was transferred to the Maritime Administration, and placed in its National Defense Reserve Fleet (NDRF) in the James River off Fort Eustis, Virginia."
Event: Acquisition
Date: 2/16/1994

Equip spares;T-AGS 39&40
Event: Interim Movement
Date: 1/8/2001

ENRTE: Mass Maritime Academy
Event: Interim Movement
Date: 1/10/2001

Temporary training ship for SUNY MA
Event: Departure
Date: 2/28/2001

"On February 28, 2001 Harkness departed Fort Schuyler for the Massachusetts Maritime Academy in Buzzards Bay, to serve as a stationary facility while the Cape Bon was prepared to serve as a seagoing training vessel for the school"
Event: Interim Movement
Date: 2/28/2001

ENRTE: Massachusetts Maritime Academy
Event: Interim Movement
Date: 3/1/2001

Returned from SUNY Maritime custody
Event: Interim Movement
Date: 6/4/2001

Under tow to JRRF (assigned location)
Event: Interim Movement
Date: 6/7/2001

Returned from Mass Maritime Academy
Date: 7/1/2005

"Downgraded upon reassignment of sister ship, TX CLIPPER II, to the BRF"
Date: 7/1/2005

No longer needed for Logistics Support of TX A&M School Ship program
Event: Entered Historic Review
Date: 12/8/2008

Date: 1/5/2009

Event: Cleared Historic Review
Date: 6/26/2009

Vessel cleared NHPA processing.
Event: Status
Date: 9/30/2012

Vessel entered retention status in NDRF program.
Date: 10/11/2012

Ship Imagery

Harkness_Photo_1.JPEG Harkness_Photo_2.JPEG

Status Cards

2088_RS10404AF.jpg 2088_RS10404AB.jpg


Date Type Name Expand Download
6/18/2009 Harkness_NHPA_History.pdf Default Generic Expand Image Default Generic Download Image


No documents for this vessel

Shipwreck Information

No ship wreck information for this vessel