The U.S. Navy conscripts the "Junaluska" to service as a U.S. Navy Patrol vessel during World War II. Her gleaming brightwork is painted Navy Gray, and guns are mounted on her deck. She patrols the West Coast between Seattle and Alaska, frequently at night, unlighted, looking for Japanese submarines and serving as luxurious quarters for US Navy high ranking officers.
Following the War, the yacht is declared "surplus property" by the U.S. Government, and Washington Governor
Monrad Wallgren finds out from his good friend, President Harry Truman, that the yacht is going to be auctioned. The
State of Washington is the sole bidder for the boat, acquiring the ship for only $15,000 and putting her on the books
of the State of Washington as a "fisheries patrol vessel."
yacht is renamed "Olympus" after Mount Olympus, the highest peak in the Olympic National Forest. President Truman and
Governor Wallgren had worked hard on the legislation to form the Olympic National Forest and we are told that the re-naming of the
yacht was in honor of one of Wallgren's proudest achievements. The yacht is completely refitted after her war service, at a cost of over
$104,000 of Department of Fisheries funds. President Truman is aboard many times for informal and formal trips, fishing from Olympus' tender,
and enjoying poker games and merriment aboard. The yacht transports President Truman from
Bremerton to Seattle where he starts his "Whistle Stop" Train Campaign tour. The President signs the Olympus log "Harry Truman,
Independence, MO, Temporary Address 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue."
Investigative reporting by the Seattle Post Intelligencer reveals that over $104,000 in Department of Fisheries funds were spent between 1945 and 1948 acquiring and refitting the "Governor's Yacht." The extravagant yacht becomes a huge issue in the Governor's election in 1948.
Governor Wallgren loses the election to Arthur Langlie, who orders the yacht sold, unfortunately in a rigged bid to his highest campaign contributor, creating the first scandal of his new administration.