Eight medium-sized ships, and one smaller one, were purchased for conversion to auxiliary cruisers during the Spanish-American War. USS Dixie, Prairie, Yankee, Yosemite and Buffalo were 7500 ton ships of very similar design. Badger, Panther and Resolute were of 4000 to 5000 tons. The former pilot boat Peoria was the smallest of the lot and later became a tug. Except for Buffalo, all these ships were very active off Cuba and elsewhere in the Carribbean, serving as cruisers and as transports. The Navy retained most of them well into the next century, using the larger ones as training ships, transports and destroyer tenders. Dixie, Prairie, Panther and Peoria remained in service until the early 1920s.
The Panther was an auxiliary cruiser built in 1889, acquired by the US Navy in 1898 for service in the Spanish American War. She served as an auxiliary repair ship for the North Atlantic fleet from 1907-23.
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