The USS PUGET SOUND in Hong Kong, 1945

Here's something a little different. This is from my father's collection of photos taken when he was in Hong Kong following the end of World War II.

Click on image to see it larger.

This is the USS Puget Sound(CVE 113) at anchor in Hong Kong harbor, December 1945.
USS Puget Sound (CVE-113)

Builder: Todd Pacific Shipyards
Laid down: 12 May 1944
Launched: 20 September 1944
Commissioned: 18 June 1945
18 October 1946
Reclassified: Helicopter Carrier, CVHE-113 on 12 June 1955, Cargo Ship and Aircraft Ferry, AKV-13
Struck: 1 June 1960
Fate: Sold 10 January 1962, and scrapped in Hong Kong 1962

General Characteristics
Class and type: Commencement Bay-class escort carrier
Displacement: 10,900 long tons (11,100 t), 24,100 long tons (24,500 t) full load
Length: 557 ft (170 m)
Beam: 75 ft (23 m)
Draft: 32 ft (9.8 m)
Propulsion: 2-shaft Allis-Chambers geared turbines, 16,000 shp
Speed: 19 knots (22 mph; 35 km/h)
Complement: 1,066
Armament: 2 × 5 in (130 mm) guns (2×1), 36 × 40 mm AA guns
Aircraft carried: 34

Service Record
Part of: US Pacific Fleet (1945-1946), Pacific Reserve Fleet (1946-1960)
Operations: Operation Magic Carpet

USS Puget Sound (CVE–113) was a Commencement Bay-class escort carrier of the United States Navy.

She was laid down on 12 May 1944 at Todd-Pacific Shipyards, Inc., Tacoma, Washington; launched on 20 November 1944; sponsored by Mrs. Bert A. Teats of Sheridan, Oreg.; and commissioned on 18 June 1945 at Tacoma, Captain Charles F. Coe in command.

Service History
After trials and fitting out in the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Puget Sound steamed south on 6 July 1945 for shakedown out of San Diego, Calif., where she embarked Marine Air Group 6. She departed San Diego on 8 September for brief training in the Hawaiian Islands before proceeding to support the occupation of Japan.

Puget Sound entered Tokyo Bay on 14 October 1945. Her aircraft joined in the show of strength and conducted antimine patrols in support of the landings of the 10th Army at Matsuyama and Nagoya. Thence tactical training took her to the Philippines, Hong Kong, and the Marianas. Loading surplus aircraft in Apra Harbor, Guam, she put to sea on 6 January 1946 en route to Pearl Harbor, where she offloaded the surplus aircraft. At San Diego on 23 January, Marine Air Group 6 was detached and Puget Sound prepared to serve as a "Magic Carpet" home for Pacific war veterans.

From February-May 1946, Puget Sound made two "Magic Carpet" runs between San Diego and Pearl Harbor and one between Alameda, California and Okinawa, transporting 1,200 troops and surplus aircraft.

She steamed north on 24 May 1946 to prepare for inactivation, entering Puget Sound Naval Shipyard on 1 June. Decommissioning there on 18 October, she entered the Pacific Reserve Fleet at Tacoma. Her hull classification and number were changed to CVHE–113, effective 12 June 1955, and then to AKV–13, cargo ship and aircraft ferry. Struck from the Naval Vessel Register on 1 June 1960, she was sold for scrap on 10 January 1962 to Nicholai Joffee Corp. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
Click on image to see it larger.
Formation photo of change of command on 11 February 1946 for the CVE 113 USS Puget Sound. Photo provided by John Kruppstadt in memory of his father, Robert L. Kruppstadt, Signalman 3rd Class on this ship.

As to the boat in the foreground, that is a Chinese Junk:
A junk is an ancient Chinese sailing vessel design still in use today. Junks were developed during the Han Dynasty (206 BC–220 AD) and were used as sea-going vessels as early as the 2nd century AD. They evolved in the later dynasties, and were used throughout Asia for extensive ocean voyages. They were found, and in lesser numbers are still found, throughout South-East Asia and India, but primarily in China, perhaps most famously in Hong Kong. Found more broadly today is a growing number of modern recreational junk-rigged sailboats. (SOURCE: Wikipedia)
To read more about the history of the Chinese Junk click here.


  1. That's actually a very good shot. A photographer was at work here.

  2. It is a great shot. My dad doesn't know if he took it or not.

  3. Tavis White
    Mar 14, 2011 10:42 PM
    My father served on this carrier from 1945-46. It is amazing to see this picture, thank you so much. However, I feel that maybe this photo was taken later, possibly in 1955 or 56. This photo shows helicopters, which were not on the carrier in the 40's, but were in the 50's when it was CVHE-113. Thanks again for sharing this beautiful photo.

  4. Thanks. I can only tell you that my father's handwriting is on the back and I talked to him about the photo. The only time he was in Hong Kong was in the 1940s. In fact he had Shore Patrol duty on New Years Eve and still talks about what it was like going around getting all the drunks back to their ships.

  5. And they're definitely not copters on deck. I looked at my highest resolution shot and they're planes.

  6. That would be great because if it was taken in the 40's my Dad was on the carrier. Unless your Dad was rounding him up on shore!!!

  7. troy snelling3/17/2011

    My father was also on CVE 113. Thank you for posting this great photo, which I have never seen anywhere else.There is a great shot on the navy's photo website of the bridge, and my pop is leaning on a rail by the wheel while Captain Coe watches them hoist signals. I had it blown up to 4' square for his 83rd bday. Thanks again; great shot.

  8. That's very cool that you've found a photo in the archives of your dad! I've always wondered if someday I'd find a shot of mine.

  9. Anonymous10/05/2011

    My Dad also served aboard the Puget Sound right after the war. Took one cruise on her to the Phillipines to help return planes, equipment, and servicemen. I've a great picture of him working dockside on the P.S. Thanks for posting. This photos a keeper

  10. Glad you liked the shot. My father will be pleased.

  11. I have a formation photo of change of command 11 February 1946 with ship in background. CVE 113 USS Puget Sound. My Father Robert L. Kruppstadt was Signalman 3rd Class on this ship.