USCGC Mendota (1929)

USCGC Mendota (1930) was a Lake-class cutter belonging to the United States Coast Guard launched on 20 Jun 1928 and commissioned on 23 Mar 1929.[1] After 12 years of service with the Coast Guard, she was transferred to the British Royal Navy as part of the Lend-Lease Act. She was sunk in January 1942 when struck by two torpedoes fired by U-105.

USCGC Mendota, under construction, circa 1928.
United States
Name: USCGC Mendota
Namesake: Lake Mendota
Builder: Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation
Laid down: 20 Jun 1928
Launched: 27 November 1928
Commissioned: 23 March 1929
Fate: Transferred to Royal Navy, 30 April 1941.
United Kingdom
Name: HMS Culver (Y87)
Commissioned: 30 Apr 1941
Fate: Sunk by U-105, 31 January 1942.
General characteristics
Class and type:
Displacement: 2,075 long tons (2,108 t)
Length: 250 ft (76 m)
Beam: 42 ft (13 m)
Draft: 12 ft 11 in (3.94 m)
Propulsion: 1 × General Electric turbine-driven 3,350 shp (2,500 kW) electric motor, 2 boilers
  • 14.8 kn (27.4 km/h; 17.0 mph) cruising
  • 17.5 kn (32.4 km/h; 20.1 mph) maximum
Complement: 97


US Coast Guard - Mendota

After commissioning in March 1929, the Mendota was homeported in Norfolk, Virginia.[2] On 22 December 1939, the Sebago attempted to assist the 2,847 tonnes (2,802 long tons; 3,138 short tons) Greek SS Aliakmon, which had grounded north of Wash Woods, Virginia. The 12-inch (30 cm) hawser that had been secured to the vessel parted, but Mendota, having arrived a few hours later, was able to float the $200,000 vessel.[2]

Royal Navy - Culver

As part of the Lend-Lease Act she was transferred to the Royal Navy where she was renamed HMS Culver (Y87) and commissioned on 30 Apr 1941.[3] On 31 October 1941, Culver picked up 25 people from the Dutch merchant vessel Bennekom which had been sunk by a torpedo from U-96.


On 31 January 1942, while escorting convoy SL-98, Culver came under fire by U-105.[4] At 23:31 hours, she was struck twice, once on the port side in the forward boiler room and once further aft that likely struck the vessel's magazine. Culver broke in two and sank in less than a minute. The commander, 7 officers and 119 ratings were lost. A single officer and 12 ratings survived the sinking and were rescued by HMS Londonderry.[4]

See also


  1. Helgason, Guðmundur. "USCGC Mendota". Retrieved 24 July 2015.
  2. "Mendota (1929)" (PDF). USCG. US Coast Guard. Retrieved 24 July 2015.
  3. Helgason, Guðmundur. "HMS Culver (Y 87)". Retrieved 24 July 2015.
  4. Helgason, Guðmundur. "HMS Culver (Y 87) - Sinking". Retrieved 24 July 2015.

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