Within the Port of Baltimore, there are what appear to be a number of large-to-very-large US Navy ships, berthed in different locations around the harbor. They never move. They never seem to have any significant activity around them. They have been like this for years and years. They’re just the perfect embodiment of “dock queens” – they are always kept in perfect working order and appearance. However, they do have a purpose – they are elements of the US Ready Reserve Force, and are kept in a constant 10-day readiness state (though they can actually be under way within 96 hours).
The ships in the image above are the SS Denebola and the SS Antares, two of the eight vessels that make up the Algol Class of Fast Sealift Ships currently under the control of the US Maritime Administration (MARAD). Each ship can transport up to 700 military vehicles and supplies with top speeds in excess of 33 knots, making them some of the fastest cargo ships in the world.
The SS Denebola and the SS Antares of the US Ready Reserve Force
Fort Street, Pier 8
Leica Elmarit 16-21/4.0 ASPH lens
Leica M240 digital camera