From: Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships


A device which holds fast or binds things together.

ARS - 33: dp. 1,441 l. 213'6" b. 39'

dr. 14'8" s. 15 k. cpl. 120 a. 2 x 40mm.

cl. Diver

Clamp was launched 24 October 1942 by Basalt Rock Co., Napa, Calif., under a Maritime Commission contract; and commissioned 23 August 1943, Lieutenant L. H. Curtis in command.

Clamp sailed from San Pedro 30 September 1943 and after a brief period at Pearl Harbor, arrived at Funafuti, Ellice Islands, 8 November. From this base she conducted combat salvage operations supporting the Gilbert Islands invasion. On 10 November Clamp had a busy day as she came under air attack five different times. The enemy was driven off and Clamp sustained no damage. She conducted salvage operations on LST-34, and assisted Hoel (DD-533) off Betio Point, 2 December. Departing Funafuti 12 January 1944 for Midway, she conducted salvage operations on Macaw (ASR-11) from 24 January to 17 February, then returned to Pearl Harbor for overhaul.

Clamp began working in the Marshalls on salvage and cargo duty in April 1944. She investigated sunken Japanese vessels for salvage value off Saipan in July, capturing 10 prisoners during this work. She also salvaged LST-34 aground off Tinian, in August, returning to Pearl Harbor for overhaul in November.

Clamp arrived at Iwo Jima 19 February 1945 and until 2 March was engaged in salvage work during the invasion and capture of that island. Sailing to Leyte via Saipan, Guam, and Ulithi, she joined the salvage and repair group which cleared 21 March for the invasion of Okinawa. Based at Kerama Retto from 26 March to 15 May, Clamp gave emergency aid to Indianapolis (CA-35), a kamikaze victim, from 31 March to 5 April. She steamed to Ie Shima 12 May to inspect damage to two destroyers.

Clamp was overhauled on the west coast until 5 November 1945 when she sailed for Pearl Harbor. She remained there until 6 March 1946, put out for Bikini Atoll where she had towing, diving, and demolition duties in connection with Operation "Crossroads." She returned to Pearl Harbor 16 September, and to San Francisco 22 October. She was placed out of commission in reserve at San Pedro, Calif., 6 May 1947.

Clamp received four battle stars for World War II service.

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Date: 30 Dec 1998