The route home from the war for the U.S. submarine chasers was the same as the route to the war, with one major difference: On the initial trip overseas, chasers travelled under their own power. On the return trip, since it was not necessary for the chasers to respond to submarine threats, they could be towed.
By early November, 1919, chasers that had served in post-war duties on the minefields in the North Sea had arrived in Bermuda. Storms hampered their progress, making the landing a difficult one, and the trip from Bermuda to New York at least as difficult.
Crewman Milton Fogg, on SC 354, describes a storm in which port covers were broken, in a letter to CO Lt. George S. Dole:
We had some trip while in the North Sea, and some trip from Azores to Bermuda, and some trip from Bermuda to N.Y. I thought so especially on the last mentioned, when the two ports gave out in the radio room and your part. Say, I wish you could have seen Sterns come flying out of the magazine room when the water came pouring in. He thought sure she was sinking, and I didn’t think far away from his thoughts either.
(From Hunters of the Steel Sharks: The Submarine Chasers of WWI, p. 170.)
Finally, on 19 November, 1919, they reached Staten Island. There was still more work to be done, in decommissioning the chasers, but their duties on the chasers would soon be over for good.
--Todd Woofenden, editor
Added this month:
Photo of SC 301
added in the Hull Numbers collection. A shot of crewman relaxing on deck at the bow.