The original Swiftfire was an Intrepid class frigate built in response to the outbreak of the Earth-Romulus War in the late 2150s. In 2158 the barely space worthy ship was launched to be part of a United Earth intelligence operation called Operation Mirror Image, which required several ships (newly built and older vessels) to pose as currently active ships in Earth Starfleet, this vessel was assigned to be the twin of the Swiftsure and was referred to as the Swiftsure-II.
The ships in Operation Mirror Image then traveled around the front to mislead Romulan intelligence as to Starfleet strength and operations. Weak points along the front were suddenly "stronger" and while the Romulan's watched these ships their real counterparts were able to take part in several crucial victories thanks to the distraction Mirror Image provided stemming the Romulan's assault into Earth's territories.
Eventually the Romulans saw through this deception and the ships involved in the operation were fully outfitted for war and joined the fleet proper. During the operation the crew of the vessel had nicknamed the ship the Swiftfire rather then refer to it as the Swiftsure-II. When the ship was properly activated the name stuck giving birth to the first vessel to be named Swiftfire.
In 2160, the Swiftfire was part of the Earth fleet that took part in the Battle of Cheron. The battle would be one of the largest fleet engagements of the war and one of the hardest fought. The Swiftfire was one of the many ships to be destroyed on that day, lost with all hands. The loss of the ship and crew would not be in vain, for Earth would win the day and effectively end the devastating war.
USS SWIFTFIRE (NCC-76125)
The next Swiftfire and the first Federation vessel to bear the name would not appear until 2310. To celebrate the 150th anniversary of the battle the Federation renamed a number of ships that entered the fleet that year after vessels that participated in Earth’s victory over the Romulans. Coincidentally these new ships were once again built with an eye towards conflict with the Romulans as tensions in the quadrant ran high between the two old adversaries.
The USS Swiftfire was a Excelsior class enhanced combat cruiser. The design was had heavier armour and more weapons then the common Excelsior class. Built with an eye towards a future war with the Romulans a year later the threat would disappear with the Treaty of Algeron and the Romulan's self imposed isolation.
The Swiftfire had an unusually high registry number for the time it was built. There are many different stories as to why including that it was part of a plan to fool hostile powers that Starfleet was a lot larger then it really was. The truth is rather mundane. While in construction the registry was entered incorrectly into the shipyard's computers and the automated systems tagged everything with the incorrect number. By the time it was noticed it was much easier to leave it as the new number instead of adjusting to its original number. The original number is unknown but it is most likely a combination of the current numbers with 2 as the first digit.
The USS Swiftfire would then go on to serve for over 60 years. The vessel was a warship, an explorer, a patrol ship, a convoy and transport vessel, and a diplomatic ship over this period of time. It would have no less then four different captains during its life, with the last been Captain Jeri Allston.
In 2372, the Swiftfire was destroyed by Klingon forces after it strayed into the territories the Klingon Empire conquered from the Cardassian Union in that year. Tragically like the first vessel the USS Swiftfire was also lost with all hands.
USS SWIFTFIRE (NCC-76125-A)
The current Swiftfire, the second Federation vessel to bear the name, was also commissioned with conflict in mind. The Swiftfire-A is an Akira class heavy cruiser and was commissioned a year after the destruction of the previous vessel. Given the service of the previous vessel the registry was kept for this new vessel, an honour that is not often given.
The new captain of the Swiftfire-A, Captain Jonathan Masters, was the First officer of the previous Swiftfire and only survived to serve on this incarnation due to been injured and removed from the ship days before it was destroyed.
The ship continues the tradition of been a more combat oriented vessel. The Dominion War broke out not long after the ship was commissioned and it immediately joined the fighting.
The ship would serve with distinction with the Fifth Fleet and Task Force 59 during the conflict and survive to see peace return to the Alpha Quadrant. The Swiftfire-A was still in service during 2376.