Who is Raymond Stanton Patton?

Our boat, fka MV Patton, was named after him.  Patton was a guy who grew up in Ohio, went to Western Reserve University (now Case Western), and joined as a officer in the Field Corps of the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey.  He worked at numerous locations, including the Philippines and both continental coasts of the US, and Alaska.  He was transferred to the Navy and served as a Lieutenant and a Lieutenant Commander during WWI.  His big accomplishment was to streamline the time from making measurements to creating charts.  He also was instrumental in employing a large number of engineers during the depression.  He rose to Director of the USC and GS in 1929 and had reached the rank of Rear Admiral when he died in 1937.

There are several photos of RS Patton on the web.  A few have to do with his mission to the Philippines

Patton in C&GSOn the way out to the Philippines 1907

Patton on his way to the Philippines 1907

Patton in C&GS Philippines 1908

Patton in C&GS Philippines 1908

RS Patton was very interested in beach erosion on the eastern seabord.  He initiated studies and commissions to determine the best way to reduce erosion.  Here is a picture of RS and his coworkers on an Atlantic beach.

Patton with a beach erosion study board NJ 1935

Patton with a beach erosion study board NJ 1935

RS Patton became Director of “the Survey” when his predecessor, E. Lester Jones, died in office.  It’s fitting that two sister ships of the USC and GS, ASV-79 and ASV-80 (ASV being Alaska Survey Vessel), built shortly after RS Patton died, would become the LESTER JONES and the PATTON, respectively.  In the years since their retirements, LESTER JONES has become Summer Wind, while PATTON has been Challenger, St. Croix, Triton, and now Gyrfalcon.

USC&GS_Lester_Jones,_Patton,_and_Hodgson[1] (2)

USC&GS_Lester_Jones,_Patton,_and_Hodgson at dock in Seattle

We found lots of original plans and other documentation on the boat in a file drawer.  All of it musty, but all very interesting.  We also found some FAXed copies of plans of the original layout.  Although we can’t read all the text, it’s fun to see the original layout.


NOAA has additional information about Patton in its archives here in Seattle and as soon as I (Nancy) get some time to peruse their documents, I’ll post more history.

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3 Responses to Who is Raymond Stanton Patton?

  1. Ann says:

    Is SUMMER WIND the CYA boat owned by the Schoeggl’s? 88-foot 1940 Astoria Shipyard-built.

  2. I enjoyed reading your blog and learning more about Gryfalcon’s history – I had always heard about a her twin ship, but did not know the Lester Jones until now. I was winter caretaker for the Patton when it was moored at SYC in the early 1970’s– a real beauty! Where is she moored now?
    Thanks for sharing.

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