Escort Carrier
Ex USS St Joseph ACV/AVG-50 

HMS Ruler (D-72) was built as a Ruler Class escort carrier in the USA at Seattle-Tacoma as USS St Joseph ACV/AVG-50. Laid down 21 March 1943, Launched 21 August 1943. Transferred to the RN 22 December 1943, Commissioned 22 December 1943,

The Ruler class was the third group of escort carriers built in the USA for the Royal Navy, and were generally similar to the preceding "Attacker" Class. The modifications carried out to the earlier class after their arrival in the UK were incorporated in the "Ruler" Class during construction. Many of the class were used as amphibious support carriers, taking part in the invasion of Southern France. Others supported Eastern Fleet operations against Burma and Malaya, and some served with the British Pacific Fleet as escorts for the Fleet Train.

HMS Ruler designed as an Assault/Fighter carrier first saw service in the North Atlantic in 1944, subsequently in early 1945, she transferred to the Pacific Theatre joining the British Pacific Fleet and supported the campaign to take Okinawa. She also operated as an auxiliary carrier with the Fleet Train (TF112 Fleet Train Carriers - Commanded by Rear Admiral Fisher), flying 885 squadron Hellcats and Avengers.

March 1945 saw 1840 squadron embarking in Speaker from Schofields on the 9th and 1845 squadron in Slinger on the11th. These were to be replaced on 18 March 1945 by 1772 Squadron's Firefly Is disembarked  to Schofields from HMS Ruler and 885 Squadron's Hellcat Is disembarked from HMS Ruler on the 20th, the later was to stay in Schofields until April 4th before re-embarking in HMS Ruler.

On 14 June, 1945 the BPF Task Group 111.2 (Rear Admiral Eric JP Brind, RN), in Operation Inmate comprising fleet carrier HMS Implacable, escort carrier HMS Ruler, four light cruisers and five destroyers, attacked Truk atoll to neutralize Japanese air bases there. Over 200 sorties were flown against what targets could be found. The force     returned to Manus on 17 June and awaiting the Pacific Fleet.

Children aboard HMS RULER being transported from Japan to Sydney, Australia in August 1945.

Ruler was one of the Allied Ships present in Tokyo Bay during the Japanese surrender ceremony, 2 September 1945. Immediately postwar she was involved in delivering prisoners of war to Sydney, Australia.

She returned to the USN on 29 January 1946 and scrapped 1947.

Battle Honours
Atlantic 1944, Okinawa 1945

No information on Captains.

Squadrons and Aircraft

FAA squadrons embarked Dates Aircraft type
885 Dec 1944-Sept 1945 Hellcat I/II
1772 Jan-March 1945 Fiefly I

Associations and Reunions

HMS Ruler Association
          Contact: John Robson, 150 Gilnahirk Road, Belfast. BT5 7QQ
(date of last address 2000)
HMS Ruler / 885 Sqdn FAA: Reunion in Liverpool from 20 to 23rd April 2001

Can you help I am trying to locate the British aircraft carrier HMS RULER , my father left this ship in Sidney Harbour, Australia in 1945, after delivering prisoners of war to Sidney. She was last seen being fumagated in the harbour.
Peter Quainton <>
Oxford, Oxfordshire England - Saturday, February 05, 2000 at 19:35:18 (GMT)
Carrier name HMS Ruler
built as USS St Joseph ACV/AVG-50.
Class Ruler
Type Auxilary oiler Escort Carrier (US built)
Ships in Class Ameer, Arbiter, Atheling, Begum, Emperor, Empress, Khedive, Nabob, Patroller, Premier, Puncher, Queen, Rajah, Ranee, Reaper, Ruler, Shah, Slinger, Smiter, Speaker, Thane, Trouncer, Trumpeter
Launched Laid down 21 March 1943, Launched 21 August 1943. Transferred 22 December 1943, Commissioned 22 December 1943
Tonnage 8,333 tons

Gross displacement 14,000 tons

Load 5667 tons

Engines 2 x Foster-Wheeler boilers; 2 x Westinghouse geared turbines at 8500 shp, 1 shaft
Speed in Knots 18 knots 
Armament Gun 2 x 1 x 5"/38-cal DP 8 x 2 x 40mm AA 27-35 x 1 x 20mm AA 
Crew Complement 646 Officers & Ratings including Air Group
Length (ft/inches) 496
Beam (ft/inches) 69' 6"
Draught (ft/inches) 23'3"
Flight Deck length (ft/inches) 470'
Flight Deck width (ft/inches) 70'
Number of aircraft carried 18-24
Fate of carrier  scrapped 1947

Ruler Class specifications by British  
NavSource Online: Escort Carrier Photo Archive CVE-50 HMS RULER   (Ex- CVE-50 ST. JOSEPH) CLASS - BOGUE  
Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships
(1976) Vol. 6, p.240.
Summary history of USS St Joseph/HMS Ruler
Escort Carriers of World War Two - by Poolman, Kenneth (1989). Published by Arms & Armour. ISBN 0853689520
Sturtivant, R & Ballance, T  (1994). 'The Squadrons of the Fleet Air Arm' Published by Air Britain (Historians) Ltd, 1994 ISBN: 0 85130 223 8

The World’s Warships 1941 by Francis E. McMurtrie (1944). Janes London 1941 1st ed. 

Jane's Fighting Ships of World War II by Francis E. McMurtrie (Editor)(1984). 320 pages. Crescent Books; ISBN: 0517679639

World Aircraft Carrier Lists and Photo Gallery - from 1913 to 2000. Naval History Information Center, Haze Gray & Underway
        Last Modified: 23-2-2001


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