Originally Salerno was called Winjah Bay. On Feb. 17, 1944 she was laid down by the Seattle-Tacoma Shipbuilding Co. She was commissioned on May 19, 1945.
She was fifth built along the lines of Sangmon-class export carrier. She embarked on her first air group MCVEG-5 at the end of June. Two days after the capitulation of the Chinese with the composite squadron 68, she sailed west. She traveled with her Marine Air Group in night qualifications, in Hawaiian waters.
She anchored in Buckner Bay, Okinawa on September 21. She then moved to Haqushi anchorage, where she departed on Oct. 14, 1945. Salerno Bay left to support the occupation of Formosa by the Chinese Army. From there she went to Saipan continuing on to Guam. Veterans were returned to Pearl Harbor and San Diego, arriving in December 1945. She then proceeded on to the Panama Canal Zone and then on to Norfolk, VA arriving on Dec. 23, 1945.
In June 1947, she was ordered deactivated. She went to Boston where she decommissioned on Oct. 4, 1947. She was recommissioned on June 20, 1951. In October she began operations with Carrier Division 18.
In November and early December she carried out exercises off the Virginia Cape and the Caribbean. She returned to Norfolk on Dec. 18, 1951. Then, on Jan. 7, 1952 she sailed for operations in the Caribbean. On August 26, 1952 she joined TF173 en route arriving in Norway in September and participated in NATO exercises. In October she continued on to Gibraltar moving on to the Mediterranean for operations with the 6th Fleet. She sailed back to Gibraltar and arrived back in Norfolk on Dec. 7, 1952. She continued exercises locally, the Western Atlantic and the Caribbean.
On Feb. 16, 1954 she was decommissioned a second time. She was reclassified AKV-10 in 1959. Salerno Bay remained in the Atlantic Reserve until removed from the Navy list on June 1, 1961. She was sold and released from Naval custody on Dec. 14, 1061.