U.S.S. Allen M. Sumner DD-692
The Original Allen M. Sumner

Refueling from the USS Cuyama (AO-3) Sumner and Corry in the Panama Canal circa 1929 "Dress Ship" for Washington's Birthday February 22, 1924 in Target Bay, Culebra, West Indies.

Sumner in Hawaiian waters
Circa 1923
The original SUMNER (DD-333) was of the Clemson Class displacing 1,215 tons, 314' 4" in length, with a beam of 30' 11" and a design speed of 35 knots. With a crew of 122 she was armed with 4 4" guns, 1 3" and 12 21" torpedo tubes. Her Flag Hoist/Radio Call Sign was NUQX.

The USS Sumner (DD-333) was laid down at San Francisco, Calif., on 27 August 1919 by the Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corp.; launched on 27 November 1920 sponsored by Miss Margaret Sumner and commissioned on 27 May 1921, Lt. Comdr. Donald Bradford Beary in command.

Four days later, Sumner joined Destroyer Division 49, Squadron 13, Flotilla 2 of the Pacific Fleet. Her naval career lasted almost nine years and occurred during a period of relative naval calm. On only four occasions did she depart from her routine of training, maneuvers, and patrols. The first such break came in 1924, when the revolution against the Obregon government in Mexico rose to such intensity that the lives and property of Americans in the country were endangered. Accordingly, on 17 January, while Richmond (CL-9) was dispatched to Tampico, Sumner and five other destroyers joined Omaha (CL-4) in sailing to Vera Cruz to protect the resident Americans.

Sumner resumed her normal west coast operations in early April of 1924 and was so employed until mid 1926. On 1 July 1925, she joined the Battle Fleet and a division of light cruisers from the Scouting Force in departing Pearl Harbor for a cruise to Australia and New Zealand. The force visited Pago Pago, Samoa, then continued on to Melbourne and Sydney, Australia and to Auckland, Lyttleton, Wellington, and Dunedin, New Zealand. The fleet returned to the west coast on 26 September, and Sumner resumed training duties and patrols.

In March 1927, she transited the Panama Canal to participate in maneuvers in the Atlantic Ocean. During that cruise and the maneuvers, she made it as far north as Boston, Mass., before returning to the Pacific Ocean in June 1927. After a voyage to Hawaii and operations in that area, conducted in 1928 Sumner returned to her activities along the west coast until the spring of 1930.

On 29 March 1930, she was decommissioned at San Diego, and her name was struck from the Navy list on 18 November. Between then and 1934, she continued to serve the Navy first as a barracks ship for submarine crews; then as a test ship for structural strength tests. Finally, on 12 June 1934, her hulk was sold in accordance with the terms of the London Treaty for the Limitation and Reduction of Naval Armaments.

Many thanks to Terry D. Tull, whose grandfather was a crew member of the original Sumner, Fred Weiss, Darryl Baker and Joe Gall for the pictures of the original Sumner.