John H Marsh Maritime Research Centre

Can you help with any information on the following cases?

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Dominican Monarch and Sterling Castle
18 May 2015
Moria Loock wrote:
Research Richard Revell born 1901
Travelling from Southhampton to Durban and Cape Town
Thanks to shiplists research of my late father I found prove that Richard Revell - born 1901, was a passenger on Dominican Monarch 17 December 1948 to Durban South Africa. Age 47
Richard Revell also came into Cape Town the next year 4/8/1949 with Sterling Castle, according to family.
I know now that he was definitely born in 1901 but cannot find the day and month or place of birth anywhere.
If you can help me with following:
*Did British citizens need a passport to travel from South Hampton into South Africa.
*Will it be possible to find a shiplist outward from South Africa to South Hampton from the late 1940's?
* Is it possible that he came in already in 1930's with warship from any other country apart from Britain?
* it it possible that he could have shipped in with him a Daimler car on Dominican 1948 or Sterling 1949.
Kind regards

Rugby match between warships in Simonstown
11 May 2015
Pierre Massyn wrote:
Hallo, during the second half of 1972, a French war ship docked in Simonstown.
My ship, the SAS President Kruger played a rugby match against the French.
I was in that team. I am looking for the name of the French ship.
It is likely that that the PK was in dry docks at the time. Can anybody out there help?
Thank you.

SS Robin Moor
3 May 2015
Joshua Smith wrote:
The American Merchant Marine Museum is interested in copies of images of the SS Robin Moor (formerly Exmoor) which was torpedoed in May, 1941.

It was the very first American cargo ship torpedoed during the war, and we hope to have an exhibit in 2016 to commemorate the 75th anniversary.

Please note that we are searching for illustrations for a book and/or for display in our galleries.

Best regards,
Joshua M. Smith, Ph.D.
Interim Director, American Merchant Marine Museum
U.S. Merchant Marine Academy

Salvage Tug Sir Fredrick
16 Mar 2015
Roy Stanley wrote:
I believe I am the great grandson of the Captain Harding. I know the ship was scuttled off Thunderbolt Reef. I know he was also credited with many heroic sea rescues in Algoa Bay. I would like to know a little more about him and his little tug boat. Before moving to the USA in 1996, I had newspaper cuttings from his funeral in Port Elizabeth. He was very well known for his deeds. However, all this was lost in transit.
Any information greatly appreciated.

Roy Stanley
California USA
SS Newcastle City
6 Feb 2015
Kevin J Storms wrote:
Looking to see if anyone can help me locate the cargo manifest of this wreck.
thank you.

Arrival and departure of Union Castle mail boats 1925
5 Feb 2015
Danie van Zyl wrote:
Having been a great help in the past I turn to you again for possible guidance.
I am researching the Experimental Airmail experiment in 1925 from Feb to July.
I want to trace the arrival and departure of Union Castle mail boats during that period. I had hoped to find micro-fish or such resource with the Cape Times Shipping News column for that period but have not been successful.
I wonder whether you could perhaps give me a lead as to where the information I seek my lie hidden. I realise this is really a shot in the dark, but researching some difficult area forces a person to try anything that looks like a possible lead.
With many thanks, Danie
Ocean Liner
27 Jan 2015
Samantha Titus wrote:
Hi, I am looking for any articles, photos relating to the Ocean Liner and the band called The Triangles.
I only have a newspaper article stating they were the first non-white group to pay on the ocean liner.
They sailed on 30 December 1970 and they sailed all along the South African coast and as far as Mauritius.

16 Jan 2015
Hannes Nel wrote:
I need help regarding some research I doing .
In the late 50's early 60's a vessel called the BEREA stranded on the beach on the southern side of Pomene Mozambique The vessel was carrying Sugar and tha t is how Pomene was founded .
I need some History , Photos ext .
Hannes Nel

San Joa sank 1562 Transkei Coast
12 Jan 2015
Butch Davies wrote:
I have scattered info on this wreck and also did some photography of some of the cannons salvaged from the wreck off the Msikaba River mouth where she founderd

Any othe parties who have info on this wreck or want to know more please contact me and I will try to be of assistance and would appreciate the same.

12 Jan 2015
Charmaine Carstens wrote:
Good day.
I'm busy with some genealogy research and I wonder if you can assist me. If not, would it be possible to point me to somebody that may be able to help.

I am interested in a ship called Victoria, she departed from Hamburg on 1 October 1859 under Captain C.P. Thönissen and her final destination: Cape Town.

I would like to know when she arrived in Cape Town and where if possible I would find a picture of this vessel.

She definitely made it! My 2nd great grandfather and his family was aboard. Urbasch, Carl Landmann (35), Mohsau (Pr.), mit Frau Auguste (30) und Pauline (9), Auguste (5), Elise (unter 1).

Kind regards.
Charmaine Carstens

Captain's Cabinet
3 Jan 2015
Joyce Gericke wrote:
Looking for information on a Japanese piece of furniture that was called a "Captain's Cabinet". It is black veneer with oriental pictures scrawled in gold leaf. I have one that is from somewhere between the 16 - 18 century.
If you have ever heard of it, please advise.


Thesens Steam Ship Company
11 Nov 2014
Guy Rich wrote:
I hope you can help. My Father served in the South African Merchant Marine during WWII. He started his career with Thesens Steam Ship Company and went on to join Andrew Weir's. I have his medal listing from the Kew Archive in the UK but the reference on it is CRS109 to SA 18/12/46. Can you point me to any archives or historical resources that I could use to "plot" his career and involvement in the merchant marine during WWII.

Many thanks.

Poseidon/King Cenric, Mossel Bay
12 Oct 2014
Bert Hansen wrote:
My grandfather, was a survivor from a Norwegian ship that was wrecked in Mossel Bay around 1900. His name was Olaf Hansen.I think he might have been a crew member on either the Poseidon or the King Cenric. I would like to find out which ship he was on.

Convoy UGS-18 Oct 1943
3 Oct 2014
Theron Snell wrote:
Looking for first hand accounts, letters and especially photographs pertaining to UGS-18.
This convoy left Hampton Roads 15 September 1943. It was attacked by German aircraft off Cape Tenes in the MED on 4 October 1943.
I have U.S. convoy records and master's reports for some ships in the convoy, but I am looking for evidence from individuals who sailed in the convoy.
Thank you.

SS Nea Hellas
18 Aug 2014
Steve Benedyka wrote:
I am seeking passenger list for the SS NEA HELLAS which arrived Melbourne, 23 February 1949.
Is there any information about port of departure, date of departure and shipping route?
I am searching for passenger records for Waclaw Antoni Benedyka, Stansilaw Benedyka & Maria Mycka.
Thank you.

Tracing true to scale models of working steamships
2 Aug 2014
Lyndon Bartlett wrote:

I'm searching for some advice concerning the following story.

My maternal grandfather William H Bebington born in Bootle and died in Walmer, P.E. aged 62 on 3-9-1932. According to my late mother and other sources he had, during his life in South Africa, constructed quite a number of true to scale models of working steamships. I recall as a child on a number occasions going to view a couple of them in the old P.E. museum in Bird St. It was a sadness that one of his family had just given the others away after the old man's death.

If there is any possible advice regarding tracing them I would be very pleased

Yours faihfully
Lyndon Bartlett

brigantine Chieftain
24 Jul 2014
Nicci Botha wrote:
Good afternoon
My great, great, great grandfather Ephraim Frederick Rathbone arrived in Table Bay from Mauritius on the brigantine Chieftain which ran aground off Mouille Point on 6 June 1848. I'm looking for anymore information on the incident, including a passenger list. His first daughter, whose name was Annie Alice Chieftain, was either born on the vessel or shortly after the wreck, as she was baptised in St George's Cathedral in July of the same year. They then proceeded to Port Natal on the coaster Rosebud (would also love any information or passenger lists on this vessel).

If you are unable to help, maybe you would be so good as to point me in the right direction.

Many thanks

Rikki Tikki Tavi
12 Jul 2014
Jeremy Diamond wrote:
At the end of WW2, I left Melbourne on this ship headed for London, UK. My Mother Phyllis Diamond took me and my sister Carol back to the UK. Does anyone have any records or details of the ship and passengers?

I am doing some research for a book.

Jeremy Diamond

14 Mar 2014
Alan Ford wrote:
I am trying to identify a harbour tug in a picture of HMS Nelson taken in Durban in 1942. The photograph is unclear. The port of registry is Cape Town.
She is depicted in the black and white livery of the Railways Administration.
The name could be DIKOP ( spelled with one K), or perhaps DIXON.
David Reynolds book A Century of South African Steam Tugs makes no refernce to these names. I can mail a copy of the picture to anyone interested.
Union-Castle mail ships
11 Mar 2014
Janet Farrell wrote:
Fondly remembering the Union-Castle mail ships (and having emigrated to SA on the Athlone castle in 1964, experienced the grandure).
I am trying to recollect the name of the last mail ship to leave Cape Town in 1977 on the very final voyage.
I watched from the 7th floor of the Cape Town Medi Clinic as it departed, but cannot remember the name!
Please help me out?
22 Feb 2014
Lorenzo Colombo wrote:
I have recently created a blog about Italian ships lost in WWII and their crews, and one of the ships I have written about is the steamer Sistiana, captured in Table Bay on 10 June 1940 and renamed Myrica and then Empire Union. I have found a photo of the Sistiana being captured that is credited to you (John H. Marsh Maritime Research Centre)
I would like to ask you if you know more details about the capture of the Sistiana (how it happened, who was the master of the ship, how many crew/passengers were aboard and captured, was there any attempt to scuttle the ship and such) and about what happened to her crew after the capture.
Kind regards and thank you for any reply,
Lorenzo Colombo

Durban Floating Dry Dock
19 Feb 2014
Dolf Louw wrote:
Ek is van George en stel belang in die 'Durban Floating Dry Dock' wat by Glentana op die rotse geloop het.
Omrede die dok nie eintlik ‘n skip was nie (eerder ‘n 'struktuur') word dit as ‘n reel nie in boeke oor skeepswrakke behandel of aangeteken nie.
Ek het wel ‘n stuk op die 'World Naval Ships forum'-webruimte oor die dok opgespoor, maar die inligting bots met koerantberigte in die George Herald Feesuitgawe van 18/08/2011 (wat te kenne gee dat dit tydens die Tweede Wereldoorlog gestrand het (in teenstelling met 1902!)).
By voorbaat dank.
Dolf Louw
SS Nyassa
1 Feb 2014
Helene Szasz wrote:
I am looking for Information on The SS Nyassa that sailed from Trieste in 1939.
Travelled thru the Suez Canal & my parents disembarqued in Beira, Mozambique.
Did the ship leave from Tieste/ or did they have to switch from another ship in Port Said? maybe?
Thank you
h. Szasz

Eugenie S. Embiricos
27 Jan 2014
John Cook wrote:
The Greek freighter Eugenie S. Embiricos stranded on 21st September, 1917 and salvors spent the next two years trying to refloat her but formally abandoned their work in October, 1919. In these sort of cases, a local metal merchant normally buys the hull for a song and breaks it up slowly in situ. In this case, however, it would have depended on how easy it would have been to remove the pieces of metal. If too difficult, the skeleton of the vessel may still be there, buried by sand no doubt.
Are you aware of a South African shipwreck researcher who might know what happened to the hull ?
Many thanks
John Cook

m.v.British Major
12 Jan 2014
George Mortimore wrote:
In 1949 I was Third Officer in the BTC Tanker m.v.British Major.
We visited Capetown sometime during 1949 and one of the local newspapers took a photograph of myself and the Chief Officer on the ships bridge. It was published in, I think, the Cape Argus. I can't remember why we were selected but think it was some special occasion for either the port or BP.
I have lost this photo and wondered if you could think of a way of obtaining a copy (for my Grandson !!)
Kind regards
George Mortimore

Russian immigrant ship
27 Dec 2013
Desiree Walker wrote:
I am interested in information about a shipping line or ship transporting Russian immigrants to South America or Argentina in 1911, that sailed via Luderitz, then in German South West Africa (now Namibia)?
Alternatively, any information about a 'Russian immigrant ship' that called at Luderitz en route to South America in 1911 ? Was there a line whose service route from Europe to Argentina included Luderitz ?

T Ericksen trip from Tyne to South Africa 1936
23 Nov 2013
Norah Price wrote:
My father was the Captain that took the T Ericksen from Tyne to Port Elizabeth South Africa in 1936. Any information about the trip and exact dates would be a great help.

6 Nov 2013
ETHELARIC built 1917 for the Harrowing Steamship Co., Whitby, Yorkshire, England.
My Father John William Dixon served his apprenticeship aboard the SS ETHELARIC from 1923 to 1927. During the stormy passage to Cape Town he sustained a broken leg whilst working on deck. He was landed at Cape Town, 11 Nov,1927 and admitted to hospital in the care of Nuns from a Cape Town Convent. After his recovery he was subsequently repatriated to the UK as a Distressed British Seaman.
I am trying to gather information about the hospital where he was treated, how long was his stay and details of the ship which brought him back to the UK.
Thank you.

Richard John QUESNELL
30 Oct 2013
Mary Beth Frederick wrote:
I research and write a blog about my husband's family. The Cape Almanac from 1865 to 1871 lists his great-grandfather, Richard John QUESNELL, as a boatman on the ferry between Coaling Wharf in Cape Town and Robben Island. Between 1875 and 1877, he moved to Port Nolloth where he was a licensed pilot, although I have only one source for this specific occupation, a report on the wreck of "Namaqua" in 1889. He died in Port Nolloth in 1917 so I assume that he spent a number of years as pilot, although on church records he lists himself as boatman and tug master, the latter of which I assume also means he was a pilot.
A researcher in Cape Town has helped me to find records relating to the family's vital information. Now I want her to research the maritime records and would like your recommendations as to repositories, etc. where she might do so.
I am especially interested in anything to do with the Robben Island boat during the time of QUESNELL's working on it, the requirements for obtaining a pilot's license in the mid-19th century, and finding his application and certificate as pilot, if possible. Before his marriage in Cape Town in 1862, I have also found a source saying that in 1859 he was an ordinary seaman from Alderney, Channel Islands, on the sailing barque "Dispatch". I would be interested in knowing whether this boat ever docked in Cape Town (she sank in 1863).
Thank you for any help you can provide. We do have a fine maritime library here in San Francisco, but its collection concentrates on the West Coast.
Best wishes,
Mary Beth Frederick
San Francisco, CA

Rescue of crew from warship off Mosselbay WW2
12 Sep 2013
Ghassie Marx wrote:
Gedurende die 2de wereld oorlog het daar 'n oorlogskip van die Suid-Afrikaanse vloot 'in die moeilikheid' geraak (ek is nie seker of dit gesink het nie) .

Die bemanning van die oorlogskip is gered/opgepik deur 'n trawler (ek dink ook een van I&J se bote) die skipper/kaptein was Koos Marx

Die destydse Minister van Polisie het die dorp besoek en die skipper/I&J persoonlik bedank.

Julle het nie dalk enige rekords / artikels daaroor nie?

Ek het ongelukkig nie 'n datum/jaar nie.


Trawler operating from Mosselbaai
12 Sep 2013
Ghassie Marx wrote:
Het julle dalk enige inligting oor vermiste skepe (trawlers) in 1956 (voor Julie 1956). Dit was 'n I&J trawler en sy 'tuis hawe" was Mosselbaai. Daar was 'n storm ter see en die hawe kon geen kontak maak met hulle nie. Die trawler het iewers langs die kus skuiling gevind, maar kon nie met die hawe kommunikeer nie.

Was algemeen aanvaar in die dorp dat hulle vergaan het, maar tussen 3 en 7 dae nadat hulle vermis geraak het, het die trawler gehawend teruggekom in die hawe. Sover onthou word, was daar geen ongevalle nie.

Aangesien Mosselbaai daardie tyd so klein was, was daar dalk 'n artikel in die Mosselbaai Advertiser. Die skipper/kaptein was Koos Marx.


Photo of the Castle at Cape Town
2 Sep 2013
Andre De Kock wrote:
I have been searching for a specific photo of the castle in cape town for several years.
I would like to see a photo where the castle is still connected to the sea and also the photo must make the castle look good and imposing. I have found some taken from signal hill but the castle looks flat and unimportant.
I would love to see a photo of the castle, taken from the sea, where the castle looks imposing...
Very Best regards
Andre de Kock.

Shipwreck off Hout Bay 1871-1876
1 Sep 2013
Graham Shields wrote:
Good morning
I am looking for any information about a shipwreck off Hout Bay in approximately 1871-1876.
My great grandmother was aboard an unknown vessel travelling from Ireland to the Cape and her husband and three other men of the family drowned.
She was of course saved and started having children in Kimberley in 1878. Her name was Mary Johanna .....? (surname unknown). Two of the men were named George and Eric, and a possible surname was Kirkland.

This story has been handed down in our family from generation to generation, but nobody seems to know more than that. If you can point me in any direction where further details may be available, I'd be most grateful.
Kind regards

HMSAS Gribb/HMSAS Treern/The Good Hope
29 Aug 2013
John Parkinson wrote:
I have a friend who served on at least three different SA ships during WWII. He turned 90 in December and keeps an album of his life’s history. Nowhere in his files are any photos (other than one poor quality one of the HMSAS GRIBB taken from a newspaper) of his ships.

I am looking for photos of the following three ships and maybe of their crews.

HMSAS Gribb (Converted whale catcher) (this is the priority please)
HMSAS Treern (Converted whale catcher)
The Good Hope (Frigate)
Note: Treern and Gribb were both oil burning whalers previously owned by Thor, Dahl and Co. When first taken into service in 1941 they were both sailed to the Mediterranean by the SANF and converted into minesweepers in Beirut.

My friend’s name is Van'Ro van den Berg, he was an Able Seaman, most of his time was served aboard the Gribb. Among other notable events in his life, he was sailing near the Seksern when it was sunk; he saw it go down. He was also present when the Treern hit that mine and sunk in 1945.

Some of the crew I think he’d like to see are:
Commodore D K 'Skonky' Kinkead-Weekes SAN Lieutenant Pieter Hartogh
Charles Irvine
Roy Munroe
Boet Stander
Jas De Beer
John Duffel Canham

If you happen to find a photo of the Boksburg, please let me know.

I know it’s a tall order, but if you can find photos of the above I would be very grateful.
Many thanks in advance,
John Parkinson

Clipper Cutty Sark
25 Aug 2013
jeff rigby wrote:
I note that Image No 803 in the section "C" in your image catalogue refers to the clipper Cutty Sark and refers to visits 1931 and 1939. This cannot be right as she did not leave Britain after 1922 when she was preserved as a stationary training ship.
However, the Cutty Sark, under the Portuguese flag and named "Ferriera" did spend 18 months in Cape Town 1916-18 after being dismasted.
My questions are as follows;
1. Is the photo of the Cutty Sark or as she was under the Portuguese flag, "Ferriera"?
2. Is the photo taken of her in Cape Town?
3. Can you give a brief description of the photo?
I am currently researching the Cutty Sark under the Portuguese flag as "Ferriera" and there is very little information available and only a few photos, rather surprising considering she is about the most famous ship in the world. I have suspected that, given her long stay in Cape Town, there may be a number of photos of her in in Cape Town collections. Hence my interest in your collection.
Best wishes
Jeff Rigby

Brig/schooner named Thomas
20 Aug 2013
Charles Dubois wrote:
Dear Sir,
I am trying to find information about an old coasting brig/schooner named "Thomas", used between 1814 and 1829, for travels between Cape Town, St Helena, Port Elisabeth and Mauritius.
Thomas was lost in march 1829, between Algoa Bay and Table Bay. I know that her captain was "R. Butler" when she was lost. I need to know what was his first name, because I think he could be one of my ancestor. Unfortunately, I'm from France and I don't find many informations online.
I think this captain could be Richard Butler who was captain of another ship, snow named "Harmony", coming from London, wrecked in 1826 at Knysna Heads.
If you can help me to find more information about this captain, and these two ships, it will be very helpful. Thank you in advance.
17 Aug 2013
James Norton wrote:
I would like to know as much about this vessel as I can ,or be put in the direction to find info.
If anyone could help me I would be most greatful.

SS Pieter Faure
15 Aug 2013
Graham Snowdon wrote:
I am researching my great uncle, George Arthur Husband, who I believe was skipper of the biological survey vessel SS Pieter Faure at the very end of the 19th century.
Graham Snowdon

Mina Swim 1904
29 Jul 2013
alicia dean wrote:
Looking for info on the Mina Swim built in Essex, Mass. and sailed Burin, NL to Mass beginning in 1904.
Looking for more details on the name of the schooner.

SS Kadie
9 Jul 2013
Pam Smith wrote:
I have reason to believe that my great great grandfather was on the SS Kadie when it sank just off Port Beaufort in 1865 ..... any idea where I can get info on the crew from ..... ?
His name was William Sutherland ..... and was living in PE up untill 1863.
Many thanks ..... Pam

T S Mcewan
16 Jun 2013
Before vessel was scuttled , we took all the original wartime and later vessel logbooks off and gave them to , the then Railways and Harbours Port Captain in Capetown . Also have some photos of the scuttling

USS Frank E Evans
2 Jun 2013
Richard Cooke wrote:
I was a crew Member aboard HMAS Melbourne when we collided with and sank USS Frank E Evans in the South China Sea 3rd June 1969. The bow Section of Evans sank taking with it the lives of 74 American Sailors. I have always wanted to know the coordinates of the collision and where the bow section of Evans lies as I would like to drop a wreath bearing the names of the 74 lost sailors at the exact spot.
Thank You
Richard P Cooke
Emily the second
21 May 2013
james palombella wrote:
I am looking for information and a picture of the steam barge owned by William cooper in Liverpool 1963
My brother-in-law worked on this barge when he was about 16yrs of age.
I do have a picture of the first Emily built by Camel Lairds in about 1930/33 and was sunk in the eastern lock while waiting to go into the Manchester canal
many thanks jimmy
Port Nolloth
5 May 2013
Marie De Klerk wrote:
I appreciate information and, if possible photos of the two coasters listed below. I am doing research on Port Nolloth.
1. The Chub
2. The Swazi
Both these vessels operated along the coast to Port Nolloth and were wrecked in the 1940s.
Much appreciated
Marie de Klerk

HMS Loyalist and HMS Snake
30 Apr 2013
Raymond Lautenbach wrote:
Arrived in the store ship "Loyalist" in the year 1807 and was employed as an Armourer in the Ordinance Department
arr. TB in 'Snake' ex Spithead (103). 6.8.1814
About a sixth great grandfather of mine named John Constable arrived at the Cape in 1807 and 1814.
I am trying to find the history or anything known about the ships HMS Loyalist and Snake that journeyed to the Cape

Red Rover, 1828 Cape of Good Hope
27 Apr 2013
David George wrote:
I am researching the peripatetic life of William jackson Barry, 1819-1906. He reported calling in to the Cape of Good Hope in the second half of 1828 in the company or Dr John Alcock. He was 9 years old. The Red Rover was leaking and had fever on board. Heading for New South Wales. My researches indicate that Barry's accounts so far are fairly accurate. In the absence of other written records it is possible that his information may turn out to be a good guide. Thanks.
USS Raleigh 1867 sunk by fire off Charlston South Carolina
20 Mar 2013
timothy albano wrote:
Looking for any and all info on this shipwreck.
I am a novice on research and a somewhat treasure hunter and diver and believe I might have located it.
I am looking for blueprints,ships manifest,menus,china.
Info I know it had a walking beam engine and anything
Eric Helhy wrote about it in the 60's in his books on steamships so anything will be helpful
thank you
tim albano

24 Feb 2013
Julian Hadrill wrote:
Dear Sirs,
You have an image of a ship pictured at the top of your 'Ships begining with the letter S' page. Are you able to tell me please the name of this ship?
My great grandfather Henry Hadrill was master of a very similar vessel built in Glasgow, Scotland in 1880 and I know he passed via the Cape en route to Sydney from London. His ship was launched as Sutlej and was later renamed Antares.
With kind regards
Julian Hadrill

Harry Cheadle - Durban
12 Feb 2013
Sandra Roper wrote:
Do you have any information with regard to the tug named The Harry Cheadle. It was named after my grandfather.

11 Feb 2013
patrick schreiber wrote:
after leaving durban in march 1943 the empress was sunk by the italian submarine "leonardo da vinci" off the west coast of africa. Two of my sisters were among the survivors.(6 and 3 years old). Any information regarding the voyage would be greatly appreciated.

Eastern Cape shipwrecks
1 Dec 2012
Carl Runge wrote:
I am looking for information on ship wrecks along the Eastern Cape and KZN coast.

SAR&H steam tug T S McEwan
22 Nov 2012
Susan van der Berg wrote:
I am researching the TS McEwan and I am particularly interested in her early years, from the time she was taken into service until the 2nd World War.

I am looking for information on her Captains and officers from that period.

Any information greatly appreciated.

10 Feb 2013
owen keen wrote:
I was interested to find you are researching Smokey Sue, how far have you got?
I very much doubt if you will have much luck with the masters and officers of the period you are looking at. Almost certainly you need to find names of pilots say shortly after your years as the masters of the Mc will have been promoted to pilot, and most Cape Town men stayed put rather than move to other ports. (I was an exception, only getting there by way of Walvis Bay from Durban)

About your only chance is with the SAR&H museum in Jo'burg, in the 1960's there was a great clear out in the ports, in Durban a whole shed of old papers were trashed, very few records were kept.

Again try the Staff Superintendent in Cape Town (I have no idea of who or what his title is these days, as Portnet is something entirely different to the old Harbour Service.)

But somewhere in the depths of some gloomy office may lurk old staff record files.

I spend many hours researching in SA in the SA Library in the Gardens and can only say it is not an encouraging experience.
Best regards

11 Feb 2014
Graeme Johnson wrote:
Hi Susan
I have a old engine room log book from the TS McEwan from the 1920's, which records the various liners that were berthed etc. I also have an old linen blue print of some of the engine components.
No sure whether this is of interest?
Graeme Johnson
15 Sep 2014
Johann Fourie wrote:
Good evening to Susan van der Berg

Whilst searching for information regarding the rescue of a handful of fishermen in Durban harbour, I came across your note.
Do you have a photograph of the TS McEwan?
Somewhere in my files I have one and will send you a copy if you would like one.
My dad A B Fourie, worked on the tugs in Durban harbour for many years in particular the T Eriksen.
He also worked on the dredgers and in particular the Blesbok.

Johann Fourie

12 Apr 2015
Niel Swart wrote:
Hi there Susan,
My grandfather, Dirk Agenbag (DJ), was working on the McEWEN as a stoker. I have newspaper clippings of him working on this tug but sadly he has passed away. I want to know if this tug was involved with the Royal visit of 1947 and if so, did my grandfather work on those days when this tug was involved.

Who can assist me in getting this information? Who can I contact?

Your help will be greatly appreciated!

24 Apr 2015
Diane Snyman wrote:
Hi there
I have a pic of my oupa Jan Daniel Haviga who was the bosan on the McEwan. Not sure what a bosan can see the EN on the life ring behind the captain and the stem of steering wheel is inscribed with BOW MCLOUGHLIN (sp elling?) and Co Ltd...

My aunt has the iriginal of this..this is my moms copy mom lived in the breakwater cottages and was about 10 maybe that she recalls when he was on this boat. ..she was born in 1938.

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

Paris Maru
18 Nov 2012
June Kurtz wrote:
I have a teapot which was picked up by my mother when she was a child. The only information I have is that it came from a Japanese ship, the Paris Maru, which was wrecked off the coast near Sundays River mouth in the Eastern Cape in about 1928 - 1930.

She and one of her aunts both found intact teapots.

I can't find any confirmation of this wreck. Do you have any information about her? My mother died many years ago.

SS Clan Linsay
15 Nov 2012
Bev Reynolds wrote:
I am in possession of the ships cabinet from the SS Clan Linsay which was wrecked on Linsay Rocks, Mazzepa Bay, Wild Coast of South Africa on 20/21-03-1898

The ship's Captain was a J Schofield.

I am curious to gain any further information regarding the wreck & possible value of my cabinet?

Bev Reynolds

21 Apr 2015
muirmaru wrote:
Hi Bev,
Just browsing old stuff and fascinated that the capt. of the Clan Linsay at mazeppa pt was also J.Schofield. I found elsewhere, he was Joseph rather than John.
I was master in a few S.A. vessels. The last was the Moonstar, a diamond mining vessel in the late 90s.
John Schofield.

2 Nov 2012
Jan Honningsvag wrote:
My name is Jan Honningsvag from Brazil.

I am always looking for photos and information about Ivarans.

I'm super fan of ships, mainly ship company Ivarans and ships from merging Ivarans / CLAUS-PETER OFFEN and ships other companies that were chartered for Ivarans or Ivarans / CLAUS-PETER OFFEN.

Looking for images, cutting, brochures, books, magazines, etc ... any information about Ivarans.

My father worked for over 20 years in IVARAN. My father worked in IVARAN until 1987. The last ship he worked was the M/S SANTA FE.

Also interested in people who worked on IVARAN ships.

In the 80's and 90's, IVARAN had several vessels chartered from other companies. I know the names of some ships, but not all. Example: EDITA, HOLSTENTRADER, HOLSTENSAILOR, SANTIAGO, SEAFALCON etc ..

. Sincerely
Jan Honningsv

Long list of IVARAN ships provided

VOC shipwreck database
16 Oct 2012
Charlotte de Hoogd wrote:
Dear sir/madam,
I have a question regarding some research that I do regarding my study archaeological heritage management and my internship involving shipwrecks.

In my research I try to find information to collect for a VOC shipwreck database regarding several sources of information.

In my database I include general information, historical and archaeological elements. Information such as coordinates and on the (legal) status of the wrecks would make the database even more complete. Are there any excavation report available on Dutch wrecks (such as: Nieuw Rhoon, Merestein, Reijgersdaal, Oosterland, Dageraad, etc.)?

Do you know who I should approach to gather information on these wrecks of mutual heritage between the Netherlands and South Africa? Any kind of information on this subject is more than welcome for my research.

Best regards,
Charlotte de Hoogd
MA student Heritage Management at Leiden University

29 Oct 2013
Andrew Sinclair wrote:
Hi Charlotte
I am also interested in collecting information on the topic, i am interested in the north of Thailand and Myanmar trade routs.
Im very new to all this but i plan to put together some info that i can find while in the area by talking to locals and visiting museums and landmarks.
Andrew Sinclair
Hobart, Tasmania

28 Aug 2012
Melody McClure wrote:
Around about 1964 we went to Port Elizabeth (South Africa) on holiday. We went ot the museum and there was bits and pieces of a ship wreck with the name of Sherwin on them. I am hoping you will be able to give me some information on this ship or the owners. We have contact the museum but they do not seem to have anything of this exibit there.
The Sherwin are my great great grand family and we would like to trace as much as possible.
I trust you may have some information for me.
Thank you,
Melody McClure
6 Jul 2012
Carol Wion wrote:
I want to verify sailings by the Klipfontein in March of 1945. My family was transported from Leyte, Philippine Islands to San Francisco. We were civilian POWs returning to the US. Are passenger lists available?
Thank you.
25 Jan 2013
kja.bouma wrote:
Hi Carol, gives the following info for the vessel mv Klipfontein :
Sailed from Leyte march 25th 1945 , convoy IG 15.
Arrived San Francisco april 21st 1945 .
At the time the vessel was under charter to the US War Shipping Administration .
All documention on voyages ,etc , must be in archives in the US of A.
regards, Koos
6 Feb 2013
kja.bouma wrote:
Hi Carol,
The National Archives have lists of passengeres from ships calling in the USA. I have the contents list of a file with passengerlists of ships that called at san francisco.
File has been microfilmed in the mean time and can be viewed there. info you asked for must be on roll 380.
Please note that the ships name has been misspelled as "KILPFONTEIN". perhaps a search on internet with the term : "kilpfontein" will give you further results.


3 Oct 2014
Theron or Diane Snell wrote:
Try You can gain access to immigration records for passengers entering the USA at the Port of San Francisco. These records are essentially passenger lists and show some information like gender, age etc.

It should be fairly straightforward since you have the ship name.

Theron P Snell, Ph.D

4 Jul 2012
John Green wrote:
I am interested in anything on the Sailing clipper 'MILTIADES' built in Aberdeen by 'The Hood Yard' for the Aberdeen Line, 240 feet long. She was part of the immigrant trade taking people out to New Zealand and mixed cargo back to London.

Any photos or info. on her I would really appreciate.
Thank you.

3 Jan 2013
George Wood wrote:
I was looking for something else and came across your posting on the Miltiades. Try I have the information from Haws “Merchant Fleets” if you wanted more.

She actually lasted until being broken up at Genoa in 1905, but was sold by Thompson in 1902 and was followed by the steamship Miltiades in 1903.

Kind regards,
George Wood

7 Dec 2013
Jack & Rose Richardson wrote:
MILTIADES (1871 - 1905), 1452 registered tons, length 240ft 5in, beam 39ft 1in, depth 23ft 3in. Of iron construgtion, built by Hood, Aberdeen, as a passenger ship for George Thompson's Aberdeen White Star Line.
Thompson's second iron ship.
She was built for the carriage of emigrants and put on the Melbourne run.
Unlike PATRIARCH she was a wet ship but faster. her best outward passage was in 1873 - 66 days pilot to pilot and 70 days dock to dock.
In 1874, she was sent to Auckland with 470 emigrants.
From 1890, she was transferred to the Sydney run but was not as regular in getting a wool cargo for the return voyage.
In 1890, she went from Sydney to Lyttelton to get a cargo, and again in Wellington for the same purpose.
In 1896-97, she crossed the pacific to San Francisco for a return cargo.
She was sold to Italian owners in 1901 and broken up in 1905.

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

Restaurant Del Monico
20 Jun 2012
Dag Ingemar Børresen wrote:
The Restaurant Del Monico in Riebeeck Street was for decades a favourite watering hole for Norwegian sailors and whalers docking in Cape Town.
The Whaling Museum in Sandefjord, Norway, is making an exhibition about rookies at sea and their experiences in foreign harbours. We have searched for a long time (with no success) for photographs from Del Monico.

Any chance that you might know about any photographs?

Dag I. Børresen

16 Oct 2013
Peter Best wrote:
I was a whaler on the Balaena for two seasons in the 1950s and visited the Del Monico.
I don’t have any photographs, but after the club was closed I believe some of the décor was incorporated in a block of flats in Sea Point.
If you like, I can try and get some pics of it? I seem to remember it was just bits and pieces in the foyer of the flats, but maybe better something than nothing?
Peter Best

Nea Hellas
18 May 2012
Christopher Appleton wrote:
I have been researching my parents movements prior to and after their arrival in Caope Town in 1946 - when I was 2 years old. The three of us came to South Africa on the Nea Hellas in May/June 1946 (date written in a photo album together with some pictures of us on board and of Vesuvius so I guess they came through the Mediterranean). I recall my father (Dr Sidney Appleton - he was a surgeon in the RN) once telling me that they landed first to Durban and then went on to Cape Town where they settled.
I can find very little on the visits of the Nea Hellas to South Africa at all. My question is whether the Nea Hellas did in fact make the voyage to South Africa in May/June 1946 and if so, whether she docked in Durban. If she did, I suppose the ship was en route to Australia. I have a photo of what I assume to be the Nea Hellas in a port - looks like Durban to me.

Any help you can give will be appreciated.
Thanks in advance,
Chris Appleton (Prof.)

Sarah Simpson
1 May 2012
Deidre Simpson wrote:
Looking for my great grandmother , Sarah Simpson(from Uk) who boarded a ship from South- Africa to UK. My grandfather, James Simpson was left as a baby, with the househelp, given a letter and money to look after him should she not return. No news were given, which means she did not return to South- Africa.
This must have been just after the 1900 as my father is a son of 9 children, second youngest borne in 1937.

I wish anybody could help me with any leads of finding my grandmother as one of the passengers.

Thank you

Manuel Francisco Serafin
8 Mar 2012
deirdre serafin wrote:

I am looking for a gentleman he was a baker on a training ship from Portugal I think the boat name was Braganza or similar. His name was Manuel Francisco Serafin and he came ashore in a liberty boat and never went back.

thank you


SS Helen Moller
20 Feb 2012
Natalie Sweet wrote:
I am interested in the SS Helen Moller which was sunk on 5 June 1944. It was torpedoed in the Indian Ocean by a German Uboat.
Someone in the UK has been doing some research for me to find my biological father and found your site

. Derrick Edward Warren, is the name of my father on my birth certificate. He was born 20th April 1923. My mother was Rosemary Joyce Lewin and she died in 2003. I was born in London on the 29th June 1944. I have a photo of him taken in 1943, a studio photo, in uniform

Kind regards, Natalie Sweet.

Karl Johannes Olson
7 Feb 2012
helena dhana/nee loen wrote:
I am trying to trace my granfather by the name of Karl Johannes Olson.

He came from Norway by ship but I dont know the name and landed in Saldahna Bay ,married my grandmother by the name of Susanna Persence.

They had six daugthers and I am the daugther of Evelyn Olson who married a William Adolf Koen.

Any info will be of great help.

Red Rover 1828
7 Feb 2012
David George wrote:
I am researching a voyage from London Docks. June 1828 By the Red Rover for Sydney.
The ship put in for repairs at the Cape of Good Hope for three weeks for repairs. It arrived in Sydney in January 1829.

Two people said to be on board were Sir John Alcock and a boy aged 9, William Jackson Barry [or Berry]. He also went by the name of M Barry, or M Berry.

Would be interested in any documented record relating to this anchorage.


David George.

Carl Ossian (Charles Ocean) Johnson
2 Feb 2012
AnnMari Jahnke wrote:
I'am actually writing a book about my distant relative COJ, Carl Ossian (Charles Ocean) Johnson. - Founder of I&J Ltd in Cape Town.

Before the period of I&J he had a couple of boats built in Sweden, "Berea" and "Bluff".

I dont have any pictures.


11 Jan 2013
Wendy wrote:
The Bluff ran aground in June/July 1966 off Bakoven in Cape Town.

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

S.S Jeypore mutiny
1 Feb 2012
Martin Rowles wrote:

I am doing research on an incident that happened aboard the S.S Jeypore mid 1942 while docked in Durban Harbour.

I am doing the research for my Grandad who was aboard it at the time. He tells me that the merchant crew mutinied and attacked the Royal Naval crew on deck causing a stand off and after fights and gun fire, the police turned up and the incident ended up in court, where the merchant crew got sentenced to 6 months imprisonment.

I have so far had no luck in getting information.

Any help, information or people to contact would be very much appreciated.
Thank you for you time and help


Setter IV
30 Jan 2012
Freddy Dewe Mathews wrote:
I have been researching a trip that may or may not have been made to Bouvetoya. It was claimed to be made on the Setter IV, a whale catcher in 1959.

I have found the boat listed on your site and wondered if you had any more information on it. Or perhaps images of it.

Many thanks,


25 Nov 2013
Oddvar Larsen wrote:
Hi my name is Oddvar Larsen and i have a maritim web site with lots of shipspictures. Hope you can use this pictures of SETTER IV Best regadrs Oddvar Larsen
23 Feb 2014
htsujimoto wrote:
I am Japanese and used to be a whaler
Setter IV was bought by Japanese Whale Company (KYOKUYOU Whaling Co.) with mother ship in 1960.
Another catcher boat was SETTER IX
16 Apr 2015
Eric Downer wrote:
Setter 1V was indeed a Catcher boat, and one of the Hector Whaling Company fleet . The Catcher boats did Summer Whaling from a land base 100 miles up the coast from Capetown ( not certain of that distance).
For the period September-May approx, they went to the Antarctic as a fleet, accompanied by the Factory Ship Balaena, a Refrigerator Ship (ex New Zealand Shipping Company Liner), and a Tanker "Thule".
I was on the Balaena for the 1959/60 expedition, the final one as the company ceased whaling after that. I joined the ship in Southampton, England, and we stopped in Capetown en route to the Antarctic to pick up some of the crew who had been operating from the land base.
Eric Downer

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

Passenger lists late 1800s
24 Jan 2012
Rick constable wrote:
I'm trying to find passenger lists for people who came out from England to Port Elizabeth in the mid/late 1800s (in particular an Edward Stone Newton and/or family). Are you able to point me in the right direction ??
Maid of Erin
22 Jan 2012
Sharon Milne wrote:
Looking for information on the Maid of Erin which was a schooner that was in Simonstown in 1850.

Our relative Samuel Swinton was listed as a mariner aboard this vessel at his marriage.

He seems to vanish from all records soon after this although his wife remains in Simonstown and remarries in 1878.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Fort Nakasely
13 Jan 2012
Frank Baker wrote:
I was a crew member on the Fort Nakasely when we visited Cape town in 1948.
Having had a stowaway on board whom we all took to, and looked after him,all the way from New Zealand.

He showed his appreciation by doing a bunk after stealing a lot of our clothes, and He was finally apprehended by the local police. We had to attend the court in Cape Town to give evidence.

I wonder if anyone may know anything about this, and wonder if there was any write up concerning this case.

Regards Frank Baker.

T Eriksen
10 Jan 2012
Helen Ford wrote:
Just bumped into your request for information on the Eriksen. My dad, Capt Hubert Stanley Rowntree, was master of the Eriksen at the time she was sliced up by a prop and sank in East London Harbour. A very terrible time for my dad - he had to write a please explain and there was a court case due to death of a sailor by drowning.

helen ford (ms)

10 Feb 2013
owen keen wrote:
I have a website

I was a mate on the Ericksen when you dad was one of the masters (she was a shift tug, Stan was I think 'A' shift and I was mate of the 'C' shift. I very well remember that day, we turned up for work at six only to be told our tug was under water!

Stan was very unlucky because the ship he was second tug on was a notorious one, twin screw, her propellers projected and the only lead the 2nd tug could use was right over the prop. The pilot never gave Stan much of a chance, I seem to recall Stan told him he was in difficulties.

Would very much like to hear from you to get Stan's CV for my site.

15 Sep 2014
Johann Fourie wrote:
Good evening to Helen Ford,
How coincidental that I found your message whilst looking for information on the rescue of some fishermen in Durban harbour!
My dad, A B Fourie, was Bosun on the T Eriksen for a number of years in Durban.
I only heard of the accident many years after the event, and, my dad had gone ashore prior to that event.
Should you have any information on this, I would be most grateful,
Johann Fourie

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

MOORESFORT - Built in Cork 1864
17 Dec 2011
George Hendrie wrote:
The MOORESFORT is mentioned in Lloyds Register 1873 but not in 1874. Can anyone tell me what happened to her?

Bills of Lading
28 Nov 2011
Jackie Thom wrote:
Good day,
Could you please tell me if Bills of Lading of the early 1800s would have been preserved anywhere? Specifically Cape Town to UK.

Thank you

S.S. Bundesrath
23 Nov 2011
Clint Warren wrote:
Dear Sir,
I am desperately looking for information about the late 1899 voyage of the German East Africa Line S.S. Bundesrath. Apparently it left from Hamburg via Amsterdam, Naples, Zanzibar and Aden for Delagoa Bay.

I am very interested in obtaining the dates that it left port in Germany and also if there is a passanger list available.

Clint Warren.

tug ferry.cyclone
20 Nov 2011
peter cabezutto wrote:
I would like to get informaiton tug cyclone.1981 the r.a.m.s.

atlantic crossing Mariehamn to Mobile 1892-1900
15 Oct 2011
Robin Rosander wrote:
My grandfather, Hugo Rosander, was an apprentice/indentured sailor on a cargo ship that sailed from Mariehamn, Finland to Mobile Alabama from about 1892-1900. He left the ship in Mobile, somewhere in that time period, and the ship was lost at sea on it's return trip.

I'm trying to verify this information and ascertain the name of the ship and the year it sank.

Thank you!

14 Oct 2011
Greg Bathgate wrote:
I am currently doing some research into the battle between the cruiser HMAS Sydney and the German raider Kormoran off the West Australian coast on 19.11.1941. The raider, which was disguised as the Dutch ship Straat Malaaka sank the Sydney with total loss of complement.

27 Sep 2011
David Slingsby wrote:
Dear Sir,
I have been researhing my family and started with my Grandfather Charles (Copper) Slingsby.

During WW 2 Capt. Slingsby was the adjutant of CPR 1st Reserve Brigade.

On the 22 August 1940 the Sistiana (an Italian ship of the Libtera Triestina (sp)line) was captured as it attempted to pass past the Cape. Being a senior officier Capt. Slingsby was placed in command of the ship (family story) - according to his son (now 85) his father accompanied by his two sons spent the weekend on the ship enjoying all the privileges of the captain (food and refreshment). When leaving, a ships tray accompanied him home and was passed on to me.

I would like to incorporate this story - Have you any further information with regard to this ship its capture etc .

The press was gagged during this time so no reports in the local press appear.

Any further information would be appreciated

Thank you

27 Sep 2014
Bill Rice wrote:
Dear Mr Slingsby,

I have just stumbled accross your request for information on the Italian liner SISTIANA on the John H Marsh website. Details of her capture are to be found in the Commander-in-Chief's War Diaries at Simon's Town Museum.


Bill Rice

George Nicholson
24 Sep 2011
Tracey Rayner wrote:
Hi am trying to find some information on an old family friend on behalf of my 90 year old grandmother.
I am looking for any information on George NIcholson a young Irish man who served in WW2 as a radio officer I believe on a merchant Naval ship. He was last based in India but had been to Australia previously.

He died in early 1940's possibly 1943 aged 21 he was known as lost at sea. I am unable to find any information on him.

Any help would be much appreciated

22 Sep 2011
johan van wyk wrote:
Looking for plans on building model ossewa

thanks johan

19 Sep 2011
Elizabeth Jones wrote:
I am trying to research my Great Grandfather, John Paterson, who I believe was a deserter from the frigate HMS Castor. Evedently he was on board when the HMS Castor came to South Africa in 1853 to collect the survivors from the wrecked Birkenhead. After the Crimean War in 1856 when the ship returned to Simonstown he jumped ship. I need to know if he did indeed desert the ship, his date of birth and place of birth.
28 Mar 2013
Alan and Sue Patterson wrote:
Hi Elizabeth!
Your great grandfather John (Scotty) Paterson was married to my great grand aunt Maria Helena Margaretha Fredrieka HENN b. 9.9.1836 married John Patterson 28.12.1857
I wonder if, in the ensuing years you have managed to find more detail. Let me know what you have and I am happy to share what I have with you.
Warmest regards
Suzanne Patterson

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

HMHS Tjitjalengka
15 Sep 2011
Jean wrote:
My grandfather..Hugh Loney..was a sick bay attendant on HMHS Tjitjalengka..I was only 4 when he passed away in 1961. Am wondering if you might have any pictures of this ship or the crew or any names of the crew.

Many Thanks


There might be other references to this ship also on this page

6 Sep 2011
Would like to see a photo, or any information on a ship called
"Barque Chatham " Departed London 10th November 1854 and arrived Hobart Australia 19th of February 1855
1 Sep 2011
Nick Rost van Tonningen wrote:
The ship I am curious about is a Shell tanker that I believe was built Amsterdam in 1938 & 1939.

The reason I am interested in it was during the two or three day voyage in the North Sea, after building it was completed, during which it ran 'the measured mile' off Newcastle before being offically transferred to the new owner, my father, after who I was named, & then a Captain in the Royal Dutch Navy & Commanding Officer of the Amsterdam Navy yard, was dared to climb the mast up to the crow's nest by a civilian photographer who, after getting there first, snapped a great picture of him from the crow's nest, with my Dad in full uniform, smiling from ear to ear.

I gather from the leader that it was sunk during WW II.

I am intersted in the ultimate fate of the ship because it was just a neat bit of family history.

Nick Rost van Tonningen.

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

29 Aug 2011
Elizabeth Treacy wrote:
I am seeking a picture of the S.S.Creemuir sunk off Oban on the 11th November, 1940. My late father Pakie was one of the survivors and I would love to have a picture of the ship to put with his medals.
I look forward to hearing from you,

Yours sincerely,

Betty Treacy

29 Jul 2013
Paul Haynes wrote:
Dear Betty
My name is Paul Haynes and I am a friend and dive buddy of Rod Macdonald. As you are aware we located and found the Creemuir off the small fishing to wn of Stonehaven.

Hans Leonhardt, Hamburg
24 Aug 2011
Shirley Hiltz wrote:
My uncle was in Holland at war time and he was station on a warff were they were taking all the weapons and ammunitions from the ships. He got to talking to a gentleman who was from the freighter and they had a talk about places he had been to and it seems this gentleman had visited my uncle's hometown of Pictou,Nova Scotia, Canada.
The frieghter was the "Hans Leonharot, Hamburg.

My Uncle was thinking about this part of his life while we were doing research of our family tree. My Uncle is 93 now and I would like to help him to learn what happen to this man

My uncle says his last name was Admiral RITTER

He is hoping to hear that this person surivied the war.

I hope you can help me.

Shirley Hiltz

Tug - CLARENCE out of Liverpool
19 Aug 2011
Gail Edwards wrote:
The only infomation I have is a newspaper clipping this is what is said:

All hope has been abandoned for the Liverpool tug, Clarence. She left Liverpool on February 24 with the ship Marathon on tow, casting off from the ship near Tuskar the following day. She was seen in the Irish sea on Sunday afternoon, February 26, but has not been heard of.
The following is the official list of the crew: Captain, Thomas Roberts; Chief Officer, Robert Griffiths; Able Seamen, Henry Howarth, William Davies; Ordinary Seamen, A Armstrong,; Boy John Williams; Chief Engineer, Robert M'Ewan; Second Engineer, Charles W. Chatten; and Firemen, Robert Roberts, Robert Jones and W. Hawarth.

I'm trying to find out information on the Fireman Robert Jones, he is believed to have jumped into the Mersey to save a man the night before they sailed

Gail Edwards

9 Aug 2011
Gert Grundlingh wrote:
In my research on shipwrecks I found this Schooner-rigged paddle-wheel coaster shiperecked on 11 March 1840 at Tsitsikamma Point. Where can I find more information on PS HOPE? Did it carry British immigrants to the Cape of Good Hope or was it on his way to Australia?

Mozambique coast, near Limpopo River mouth
29 Jul 2011
Paul Ash wrote:

I am trying to find the name of a freighter that was beached on the Mozambican coast close to the Limpopo River mouth, near Xai-Xai (formerly Vila de Joao Belo), in 1972 or '73.

I saw the vessel from a light aircraft flying north in 1973. It was lying upright, intact and side-on to the sea.

Any information or photos would be most welcome.


28 Oct 2011
David Shackleton wrote:
Hi Paul

The only 2 ships that I know that were wrecked on the Mozambique coast were SAVE on 07/07/1961 at the mouth of the river Chinde, 40 Milers south of Quelimane, and TAGUS on 19/03/1963 15 miles north if Inhambane. I don't know whether these are the ships whose wrecks you saw?

I have photographs of both of them if that would be of interest to you?

I am also very interested in Mozambique coasters and have photographs of most of those that have been in service since 1957 when I started photographing ships in Durban.


David Shackleton

21 Jul 2011
JoAnna Graller wrote:
Today I received a packet of information from the research library in Springfield, Ohio. The information is

Theodore H Lobeck
Destination New York on March 23, 1881
Date of his birth abt 1860 making him 21 years old.
His Residence was Berstenbruck, PreuBen (Germany)
His occupation was Arbeiter=worker

The ships name Dresden Captained by Reay The type of ship was Dampfschiff
His accommodations were listed as ohne Angabe
The ship sailed under the flag of England
The port of departure Hamburg, Germany
The port of Arrival Leith (Amerika) (USA) VIA GLASGOW)
I am searching for more detail on my G-G Grandfathers entry into the United States, as to Did he wind up at Castle Garden ie Battery Park.

In 1930 United States Federal Census Had Theodore Lobeck in Springfield Ohio Born in1860 was 70 years old and was living with his son Adam Lobeck age 30

In the 1920 census Theodore Lobeck was listed in Springfield, Ohio Ward 4, Clark, Ohio Living with son Fred Lobeck age 22, son Phillip Lobeck age 27, Adam 20, Theodore was listed as a Widow.

In 1910 The United States Federal Census again l isted Theodore Lobeck {Theodore Labeck}

29 Oct 2011
Gary-Sharon Utter wrote:
JoAnna, my great grandfather was Herman E. Lobeck, he came from Germany and built his home in Pleasant Valley, New York in 1891. I have info on Herman but not Theodore, I wonder is they were related.

Sharon Lobeck Utter

16 Jan 2012
Steve Hunter wrote:
I noticed you were doing research on Lobecks in Springfield Ohio. Fred J Lobeck was my father in laws uncle by marriage

USA cargo ship aground1962 after cyclone
14 Jul 2011
Derek Bound wrote:

In January or February 1962 my family were staying in a beach chalet at the Estoril Beira Mozambique waiting for the NZ Star to take us as emigrants to New Zealand.

There was a cyclone that destroyed the beach leaving hundreds of stakes exposed. The resort must have years before removed the mangroves, put in the stakes to hold the tons of beach sand they then placed there. Many beach chalets were also destroyed.

The ships were advised to ride out the storm at sea. one American cargo ship declined and put down its sea anchors. it was driven well up the beach high and dry its whole rudder and propellor exposed by the cyclone. I am trying to find information about the cyclone and the ship that was driven ashore. The authorities were sending to Swakopmund for an ocean going rescue tug but we had left Beira before anything happened

samuel cawood
8 Jul 2011
michael midgley wrote:
I doing research on tug boat vessels that worked on the Kowei River, Port Alfred, Algoa Bay. These are :- Albany 1865. Prince Alfred. Kaffraria 1847. Samuel Cawood 1880. and the Buffalo 1874-1889. I wish to build working models of some these vessels.

I have old prints and some of where they were built but litle else..

Can anybody help me with more imformation please.

German Warships visiting Durban
12 May 2011
patrick schreiber wrote:
Could anyone please give me the names of german navy warships that visited Durban just before the second world war (possibly 1935-39). I believe a family member was an officer aboard one of these vessels, which was sunk during the war. Any help would be deeply appreciated.

Child Migration
24 Apr 2011
Roderick Langston wrote:
Dear Sir
Do you know the names of the ships, sailing from the UK, that brought 700 migrant children to South Africa 1830-1834 ???

I am just doing general research on child migration to South Africa, Australia and Canada from the UK.

Many thanks for your help.

UGS-18 and the Med, 1943
5 Apr 2011
theron SNELL wrote:
Looking for first hand accounts, recollections photos etc regarding the following British flagged ships AND others in Convoy UGS-18. UGS-18 was attacked by air on 4 October 1943 in the Med by planes from II/KG100, I/KG 26 and III/KG26.

S.S. Greystoke Castle, City of Delhi, Fort Latour, Fort Grant, Empire Boswell, Empire Guinivere, Fort Jasper, Ocean Liberty to list only a few.
I am looking for convoy reports, photos or other documents...and for anyone who sailed in this convoy.
This research is being done for a book focusing upon a US flagged ship in the same convoy, the S.S. SANTA MARGARITA.
De Jonge Thomas
22 Feb 2011
Garth Willans wrote:
We are looking for a possible log of the survivors from this Wolraad Woltemade shipwreck

15 Feb 2011
Thorn Watkins wrote:
I am seeking information on the ship Klipfontein that left San Francisco 1 Sept 1942, bound for Suva, Figi and on alone to Brisbane. I have only found she sunk 8 Jan 1953 off the coast of East Africa after hitting an uncharted reef. Any info on the Klipfontein would be appreciated.

Thank you

Thorn Watkins

07 Nov 2012
Stevie Anscombe wrote:
My great grandfather; Capt J H F Ferguson was Captain of the Union Castle vessel Bloemfontein Castle; the vessel which aided Klipfontein when she hit an uncharted object (allegedly a sunken German U-boat) off the coast of Mozambique. The family have details of the incident.

Believe it or not, Wikipedia has an entry on Klipfontein which includes some rather grainy visuals of the sinking. My family does have a pretty extensive series of images taken as the rescue proceeded too. I would be happy to fill in any remaining gaps (as I can) for you on her sinking if you are still searching.


Steve Anscombe


2 Feb 2011
Craig Mair wrote:
I am interested in purchasing a photograph of the Australian coastal vessel Tambar. However I am very surprised to find her turning up in South Africa in 1939. My research indicates that she was requisitioned into the Australian navy on 18th Oct 1939, fitted out at Williamstown as an auxiliary minesweeper, and joined minesweeping group 74 based at Brisbane on 7th November 1939. Previous to that I have newspaper reports of her movements around Tasmania all through 1939 to as late as 2nd September 1939.

Can you confirm that the vessel in your photo is definitely the Tambar, and definitely taken in a South African port ? Is it possible for me to see a copy of the picture (by all means watermark it, or make it somehow impossible to copy) in order to verify the ship ?
Thank you
Barque Industry
18 Jan 2011
Sean Tapley wrote:
Dear Sir/Madam
I am looking for any information you may have on a sailing ship named, Industry. Any history you might have on her would be great but a picture or an old drawing of her would be realy great.

She was a Barque of 487 tons, built at St John New Brunswick in 1837. She was registered in Dublin, Ireland until about 1858. She was reregistered in Melbourne Australia after that.

Thank you

Sean Tapley

Arundal Castle Steam Ship model
9 Jan 2011
Christine Catchpole wrote:
I am trying to find out if any museum in Cape Town still have a model of the Arundal Castle Steam Ship which was made by the men who were troops on same ship during WWII and handed over to the authorities in Cape Town.'

My father was one of the troops which visited Cape Town on way eventually to the Med. We have a photograph of the model amongst his war papers, he is now 91 years of age and he would be interested to find out this information.

Thanking you in anticipation.

Maritime history of Mozambique
7 Jan 2011
t smuts wrote:
Hi, can any one help with any wrecks in Mozambique.
Im doing a story on Maritime history of Mozambique.
Many thanks.
7 Oct 2013
Anne Marie wrote:
My husband's Grand Father Isidoro Sangiorgio was a merchant shipper from Sicily sailing from Sicily to Mozambique with olive oils, wines etc in the early 1900
There is a plaque on the Beira light house with his name on it.
We are also looking for information regarding the ships or freighters connected to him.

Hope you have more information regarding shipping in those days

Many thanks
Anne-Marie Sangiorgio

ss thursobank scotland
5 Jan 2011
william logan wrote:
i am trying to locate a photo of this ship

My uncle ,william mathias logan was the first radio officer and was lost at sea with the ship.

Is there anyone who can help locate a photo of the crew as I have never seen a photo of my uncle.

William Logan

5 May 2014
steve wallace wrote:
I have a lot of info on the above ship, and a photo an would like to contact me I will share it.

Steve Wallace

SS Herschel
5 Jan 2011
Debbie Robertson wrote:
I have that the SS Herschel was wrecked off the Cape of Good Hope 27 Jan 1852.
At the time she was Mastered by David ROBERTSON. He was from Dundee, Scotland. I have not been able to locate any details of this voyage & the wreck, or any other voyage whilst ROBERTSON was Master.
Does anyone have anything at all regarding the Herschel?
Best regards,
27 Jan 2012
Andrew Millard wrote:
In response to the query regarding the wreck of SS Herschel in 1852, the link below contains some references (it suggests that the Master at the time might have been named McNeil, not Robertson). Regards

Newmarket War Memorial
15 Dec 2010
Tony Pringle wrote:
One of the two killed ( Edward Perry) when MV Rothley was sunk was a Newmarket person. I am researching our War Memorial and trying to identify and illustrate as much as possible. Is there any way I can get an image of the vessel herself?
Whaling factory ship Balaena
3 Dec 2010
Kathleen white wrote:
Hello there
My father was on the whaling factory ship Balaena, and I am trying to get together a collection of photos for those that are still with us who also served on Balaena.
The one photo in particular I'm looking for is a rear view of Balaena with the flying planes attached.

Our whaling reunion is 9-10-11 in Cirencester where the album will be shown.


Kath White

12 Aug 2014
Bob Downer wrote:
Good day Kathleen,
I realise your enquiry regarding the Balaena was a few years ago but I have only just noticed it.,br> I served on the Balaena for the 1959/60 season as the cabin boy to the 50, mainly British contingent, lower deck personnel who worked on deck or in the factory below.
Originally from Portsmouth, the last 40 years I have spent in New Zealand and still, not many days pass without my thoughts going back to my time on her. One of the last great adventures. Also on board at the same time was my brother Eric who worked in the Fridge gang and my father (for his second season) on the bone gang. There were no spotter planes on her when I was there - what year was that?
Do you have any feedback from any of the former crew members? I am particularly interested in finding a winchman by the name of Johnny Patterson, from Belfast. He was 22 at the time and on his 6th season in the South Atlantic. A very bright, erudite man who took me under his wing.
I visit England most years as all my family are still there.
Bob Downer

Ernst Woermann/Njassa
7 Nov 2010
Hannelore Cilliers wrote:
My grandfather came to Swakopmund (Namibia) during 1902 on board the "Ernst Woermann". You only list a "Erna Woermann".
Visiting family, he and his family were stranded in Germany during WW1. They managed to return on board the "Njassa".
Do you have more info on these vessels?
Thank you.
SS Galway Castle
27 Oct 2010
Teresia Heales wrote:
I seek your assistance with regard to the abovementioned ship. It left the port of Portsmouth, England on the 10 September 1918 and was topedoed by the German U82 on 12 September 1918, 160 miles south-west of Fastnet Rock. The ship was carrying 346 civilians, many women and children; close to 400 South African wounded troops as well as a crew of 204.

The ship took three days to sink and about 150 people died. One of these people was my Great, Great Grandfather, Lance Sergeant Samuel Heales, 460, South African Native Labour Corps. Samuel was said to have given up his place on a lifeboat for a woman (I understand her name was Christina Reynolds) and am now in contact with her Great Granddaughter, Mrs Marinda van Niekerk, in Pretoria.

I am looking for any South African information on the sinking of the ship, survivors and "lost souls". I understand that Ernest Oppenheimer was one of the survivors and possibly wrote an account of the disaster. I am sure it was recorded by the local media, but think some details may well have been recorded or saved by a Museum.

I do know that the SS Galway Castle "grounded" in 1917 of the coast of East London and was refloated as Samuel's family were living there at the time.

Any assistance you could give would be greatly appreciated.

Kind regards
Tess Heales

17 Oct 2011
David Shackleton wrote:
My father, Frank Henry Shackleton, born 1896 was a survivor from the GALWAY CASTLE. He was an injured Deville Wood survivor who was coming home to Durban.

He stood in a sunken life boat - someone forgot to put the "bung" in the bottom of the boat before it was lowered into the sea. He was rescued by a destroyer, name unknown, before returning to Durban on another Union Castle liner.

I hope this might be of interest to you. If you need any further information I could possibly try to get it from my sister-in-law who lives in George and took care of the family papers, photographs, etc when my mother passed aw some time ago.


David Shackleton

Lucellum/Schooner Thomas Winsmore
26 Oct 2010
Sally Gray wrote:
A gold medal presented by the President of the United states has been passed down the family to my son. It relates to a steamship (Lucellum) and one of the seamen (Angus Gray) assisting in saving the master and crew of the American Schooner Thomas Winsmore on 22nd December 1915. Do you have photographs of either vessel and any information regarding the incident?

Many thanks,
Sally Gray

Barque Frederick Huth
28 Sep 2010
Andrew McLennan wrote:
I am looking for information about the barque "Frederick Huth", a British vessel registered in Cape Town.(16972 aff Nr). Capt Jacob Toby. Possibly managed by Dickson Burnie & Co for the East India Company.

A relative of mine, John McPherson, was mate on board this vessel in 1851 (as reported at the time of his wedding in Cape Town). This John McPherson later arrived in Australia with wife and child in 1854 reportedly aboard the Steamer "Phoenix".

I am interested in finding out more about the movements of this vessel before 1851 and up until 1854, with any further information about John McPherson.

Regards Andrew McLennan

12 Feb 2012
Mike Royden wrote:
In reply to the above, the wooden barque Frederick Huth was built by Thomas Royden of Liverpool in 1832, 209 tons, 91'2" x 22'8" x 15' 4". She was sold to W & J Tyrer of Billingsley, London - thats if it was the same vessel - I cant tell as I dont know her fate after 1838. I'm writing a book on the History of the Roydens and the shipyard. A small article in the meantime is here:

If you can help with any further info (especially an image!) I'd be most grateful

Kind regards
Mike Royden

passenger lists for emmigrants/troop ships
31 Aug 2010
Kevin Baxter wrote:
I am trying to find ship passenger lists for emmigrants from UK between 1877 and 1900 --- names are BAXTER and SMITH .

I am also looking for passenger list information of the troop ships which took the South African soldiers up north in 1940-1942 (GL Baxter and AH Smith)

Any assistance or information would be greatly appreciated .

Regards Kevin Baxter

Vale, Matilde, Karatara, Donkergat
30 Aug 2010
Jake Harding wrote:
I am looking for any and all information on the 3 vessels that make up the Donkergat whaling station's pier.
Any photos or historical background is welcome. Plans doubly so.

7 Nov 2011
Bill Rice wrote:
Good afternoon,

I have photos of sunken ships taken at Donkergat about 1977 - just before 4 Recce took over.


Bill Rice.

S A Seafarer
27 Aug 2010
Bernhard Becker wrote:
I am a disabled person who is building ships which have historical value to our Maritme history. the ship I am currently researching is the S A Seafarer which was wrecked at Greenpoint, Cape Town, June 1966. I need any articles and photographs of this vessel and the waterline diagrams of the ship. I have located some plans of her side view and the plan view from the top. Can anyone help in my Quest.

Safmarine has lost most of the historical documentation of the company when it was sold and the new owners are not of any help.

Thank you, Bernhard Becker.

26 Aug 2010
anthony wilding wrote:
I am interested in the history of ships owned by WATTS WATTS AND CO LTD, LONDON. This company had a goverment contract to transport horses and hay to south africa during the Boer War, for the British Army. Is there anywhere there may be records and or photos of those ships , also port and arrival dates
yours sincerely,
Anthony Wilding

HMS Sybile
18 Aug 2010
Johan Liebenberg wrote:

I am looking to for information on how the HMS Sybile, which sank during Anglo-Boer off Lambert's Bay might have been salvaged. An engineer was sent from London to direct the salvaging but the attempt, it appears, was not successful. Cannon etc were removed however. Do you have any further information for me? It would be much appreciated.

I have written an article for Good Taste magazine that touched on the sinking of the ship but am now am looking to focus specifically on this aspect. The article came about after I came across Kitta Burger from Steenboksfontein which is the farm directly across from where the Sybile sank. I am also particularly interested in finding out more about William Blade, the engine who was sent to Lamberts Bay from London.

I hope you are able to help in this regard and am looking forward to your reply in anticipation.

Best wishes


Shipwrecks near Kosie bay
12 Aug 2010
Richard Ashman wrote:
I'm looking for shipwrecks along the coast from Kosie bay mouth up north to Ponta Mamoli in Mozambique.Its roughly 10km of coastline and wanted to know regarding ships that have gone down within 5km from the shore. If you have any information id greatly appreciate it.

Many thanks


10 Aug 2010
Mats Deland wrote:
I just was to check information that this ship was just to bring Latin Americans out of Germany in 1945, after the end of the war. Has anyone heard of this?
Best wishes Mats Deland
5 Aug 2010
Bronwyn Van Der Merwe wrote:
The two photos I am interested in are the Porto Alegre ship and the Uniwaleco whaling factory ship.My grandad began whaling in the Indian Ocean in 1939 on the Uniwaleco whaling factory ship.He served on South African, British and Scandinavian ships throughout 1939-1945.He went from country to country delivering cargo.On the ship called Laplace, he was torpedoed en route from Mozambique to Buenos Aires. All got off safely onto life-boats and drifted for 4 days until they were picked up by the Porto Alegre ship. Twenty four hours later this ship was sunk by a U-Boat.

I am very fascinated by this event that my grandad experienced during World War II. This will be an amazing piece of history to keep in our family. Please let me know if these photos are currently in stock. My grandad's name is Robert Richard Van Der Merwe and is from South Africa. He is now 90 years old and lives in Perth, Australia. I am his granddaughter and am currently doing research to write a biography about his life. His time in the war is a very important part of his life which he speaks about very often.

Kind Regards

Bronwyn Van Der Merwe

Reina Seatle Washington
18 Jun 2010
Lynda Adams/ Madding wrote:
I am looking for family members of the Reina King Crab Fishing Boat which was lost at sea Nov. 13th 1965 off the Aleutian Islands. My Brother James E. Adams was on that boat. Their is very little info on the boat and no info on the crew. I have contacted Seattle Coast Guard Archives with no luck. I would like to contact the family members of the crew.
Lynda Madding
ss Boundary
15 Jun 2010
Dronz Arigho wrote:
Dear John Schofield, I saw your comments re ss Boundary and am prompted to respond as follows.

You are correct in that the vessel was built in Denmark, she did have 3 different Danish Names. At the outbreak of the 2nd World War to escape being mobilized into the German Navy she made passage to Chile where she was interned for the duration of the war. She was re-named ss Maule in Chile and kept that name until she was returned to Denmark after the cessation of hostilities.

She was operating for Lauritzen Lines for quite a few years before she came to the South African Coast. Initially under charter to a a small Shipping Company based in Durban and called "Durban Lines".

The service she provided on the South African Coast was very valuable and indeed the need for more coastal shipping on the South African Coast became a vital necessity.

The Owner of the then "Durban Lines" was inveigled to purchase the Layla Dan which he subsequently did. The vessel was re-named ss SHERWOOD and commenced a regular service from Durban and all Ports to Walvis Bay on one voyage and the following voyage was Durban to Lourenco Marques now Maputo, Beira several ports on Madagascar and then the Island of La Reunion and lastly Mauritius.

I suspect that the biggest headache for the Owners of Durban Lines was the unreliability of the Steam Engine , I suspect that any profit made by Durban Lines was swallowed up with the mammoth costs for engine repairs.

I guess that a vessel with at that time perhaps over 40 years of steaming around the world was really not up to the providing the performance and reliability that Durban Lines needed to make a success of the venture. Durban Lines got out of the shipping business and concentrated on their core business which was in Accountancy and Finance. The Owner of Durban Lines is still alive and living in Durban circa 2009.

When African Coasters took over the ss SHERWOOD she was renamed BOUNDARY and gave a few more years of service not without mishap and headaches for the new owners.

I was the Radio Officer on board ss SHERWOOD and subsequently ss BOUNDARY for approx 5 years .

Kind regards

Dronz Arigho

This culminated in Durban Lines selling the ss SHERWOOD to Grindrood and Gersigny otherwise known as African Coasters. Why African Coasters would want to buy a lame duck I have never been able to fathom out.

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

Suffolk south africa
9 Jun 2010
dave rissik wrote:
Im trying to find more info on the british steamer that sank in 1900 near Cape saint Francis in South Africa, any help would be appreciated. She had a large number of horses on board.

many thanks,

SS Cheldale
27 May 2010
Fiona Osborn wrote:
SS Cheldale 17 Feb 1940 collision with MV Greystoke Castle

My father Terence Patrick Herne (Burma) was one the 13 survivors of the SS Cheldale .

Dad passed away 2003 but often recalled the traumatic event to me, he was only 19 years old.

He recalled giving an interview to a Durban Newspaper . The Natal Mercury I think.

I too would be very interested to find the clipping & anyone who can assist with this & more information.

Fiona Osborn (Herne)


3 May 2011
Johann Fourie wrote:
Whilst reading a book entitled 'Old man River and Me' I was almost startled out of my chair - the author whose name I have forgotten, but will find it if need be, mentioned seeing a vessel in the gulf, near New Orleans, named the SS Bossevain. My dad served in the South African Railways and Harbours for 45 years. He was Bosun of the (harbour) tug T Eriksen for a number of years. Us (4) boys would take turns going with dad for the day or the 'night tug' which we thoroughly enjoyed. When I read the name SS Bossevain, I remembered it as though I were standing on the warhf and the vessel is lying 'alongside' in Durban harbour.
I bear no knowledge of the collision of the vessels you mentioned but I remember the Natal Mercury. That newspaper is part of a large group of newspapers and their archives, are housed in the offices of the Cape Argus Newspaper in Cape Town. If you'd like, I could find their contact details and forward same to you. I hope you will find what you are searching for. Greetings, Johann Fourie
4 May 2013
Keith Duncan wrote:
Dear Fiona
I don’t know whether you are still interested but I can flesh out a little of the detail regarding the collision with the Greystoke Castle off Durban.
My father was the third mate of the Cheldale (survived) and, believe it or not, my grandfather (my Dad’s father-in-law) was the Captain, who of course lost his life.
I have some documentation if you are still interested.
Keith Duncan
28 May 2015
Fiona Osborn wrote:
Dear Keith,
Thank you so much for your post. I am so sorry for such a late reply. After some years of not researching family history, I have just read your post for the first time.
I would be truly grateful to view your documents & hear of your father's account about the collision. I only have my father's verbal account. Dad would have turned 95 next month.
Many times as I kept him company he would always recollect the collision... I'm sure it traumatised him for the rest of his life. He was never a good sleeper & I can understand why.
I am sorry for your father's trauma & the loss of your grandfather also.
I am my father's youngest daughter, (whom he had quite late in life) of 5 children . I'm sure they would be interested also..
Thanks kindly,
Fiona Osborn.
Tasmania, Australia.

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Common cause of most deaths on the voyages in 1800
27 May 2010
Ian Merrington wrote:
I am presently writing a novel that tells of a family leaving England in 1812 and sailing to the Cape in search of a new life. The story tells that the daughter passes away on the voyage between Portsmouth and Cape Town (of which I have found was frequent on early voyages) However, I cannot find out the common cause of most deaths on the voyages. I see that on the HMS Weymouth, there were numerous deaths at sea, but am unable to find the cause.

Is there a common cause of these deaths?

Kind regards


Wooden trawlers
27 May 2010
Herman Fourie wrote:
I am researching an article for trade mag. on wooden trawlers in South Africa. I need info on their design origins, builders (Louw & Halvorsen? Tallie Marine, Saldanha Bay?) and the Portuguese connection. Also info on repairs (who does that nowadays?) and something on the use of these boats in practice.

Herman Fourie

5 Sep 2011
Hannelore Cilliers wrote:
Hi, My brother worked for Nisvand boatbuilders in Luderitz, Namibia (1970’s) and had to make a career change because they stopped building wooden boats. His name is Andrè Dirsuwei and resident in Walvisbay, Namibia.


Hannelore Cilliers.

SANSU freighter
25 May 2010
Jasper Tegelaar wrote:
I just bought a very old life savingboat named Sansu. Want some pictures from the boat were it belongs to: SANSU freighter 5446/1939 in 1939 (1961 scrapped)



24 May 2010
David Slingsby wrote:
I have a brass ship's bell in my possession - I estimate that its been in the family for close to 100 years. Its marked with the name STURDY. I am trying to establish if this was a local ship id so any history or details available.

Sub U509 and Queen Anne
4 May 2010
Leon Van Der Westhuizen wrote:
I am also researching the uboat views around Cape Agulhas.

Maybe the attached article can help.

Link to detailed response on U509 and Queen Anne


Leon Van Der Westhuizen

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

Nikolina Matkovic
24 Apr 2010
Sel Bottomley wrote:
I am urgently seeking a photograph of the Nikolina Matkovic torpedoed on the night of 14th Oct 1942. My uncle Jack Whiteley was serving on this ship as a Royal Navy gunner when she was torpedoed south of Greenland.

As a family we believe that he must be the last surviving member of that fatefull voyage of SC 104.

Sel Bottomley

The Norman 1 Whalecatcher
23 Apr 2010
Donna Matako wrote:
Im trying to find some information on this vessel. I have an original page form the navigation log book signed by the First Mate Albert Hem and The Captain Thorleif Fagereli. Followed by the signature of the Director of the Consorcio Ballenero.

The ship left Pisco Bay, Lima Peru on June the 24th 1953 and returned with 3 Sperm whale. I would just like to know the history of the vessel and if the document I have has any significance to anyone. Thank you

17 Apr 2010
Linda Radecki wrote:
I am looking for a photo of the ship "Southerner" It departed from Liverpool arriving in NY on 21 April 1842 carrying immigrants from England, Scotland & Ireland. Alex S. Palmer was the captain on this voyage. Thank you.

16 Apr 2010
Dawn Pearson wrote:
I have an interest in the schooner AIRLIE.

I believe my ancestor John Edward Poulden arrived in Australia as a steer age passenger on the Airlie.It arrived in Sydney on 15 February, 1887. My friend sent me a copy of the ship's manifest for that particular voyage e but it is not very clear. I would appreciate any information on ports of call and any other information.

Dawn Pearson.

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Cervia Tugboat Modelship plans
8 Apr 2010
Christo Van der Merwe wrote:
I have the plans of the Cervia Tugboat. The plan is on a 1/4 scale and would like to swop for plans of any pirate ship.
According to information found on this tug it was operational during the 1940's on the Tames river in England.
26 Mar 2010
Aletta du Plessis wrote:
Ek is op soek na meer inligting aangaande Johan Dawid Griessel ek dink aan boord die skip Elephant wat aan Mosselbaai se kus gesink het.

Het dalk iemand enige dokumentasie of inligting wat kan help?

Met dank,

Aletta du Plessis

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19th century maritime view of Capetown
17 Mar 2010
Rowland Rhodes wrote:
Dear Sir/Madam
We currently have a 19th century maritime view of Capetown.

English School 19th Century

H.M.S. Jupiter leaving Cape Town bound for India with the new Governor-General of India, Lord Auckland, aboard, 21st December 1835

H.M.S. Jupiter was a unique 50-gun two-decker designed by Sir William Rule on the reduced lines of the captured Danish prize Christian VII. Built at Portsmouth, she was launched in November 1813, placed in Ordinary in 1814 and only completed for sea in March 1815, by which time the French Wars were effectively over. Reclassed as a troopship in 1819, she was refitted to carry the new Governor-General out to India in 1822 before returning to duty as a trooper until 1835 when she was refitted again to carry another incoming Governor-General out to India, this time Lord Auckland. After this second refit, which cost £2,679, she was recommissioned under Captain Frederick Grey and left England in November 1835 for the round trip, returning home in September 1836. Paid off as a troopship for the last time in 1843, she was then relegated to a coal hulk and finally broken up in 1870.

George Eden, first Earl of Auckland (1784-1849) was a distinguished statesman and Member of Parliament who was both President of the Board of Trade and Master of the [Royal] Mint between 1830 and 1834. Appointed Governor-General of India in 1835, he arrived to take up his post early in 1836 and enjoyed a successful tenure during which he was created Earl of Auckland after the satisfactory end to the first Afghan War in 1839. Recalled home in November 1841, he became First Lord of the Admiralty in 1846, and was also President of the Royal Asiatic Society and the senate of University College, London.

Merchant Navy training school near Berkley
11 Mar 2010
david huntley wrote:
Trying to get information on the Merchant Navy training school near Berkley on the river seven 1958 , l spent my training there. l would like to have a photo of the old training ship , many thanks David
20 Sep 2011
Christopher Nash wrote:


Vindi boys, trained for the Merchant Navy at the National Sea Training School, Sharpness?

Christopher Nash

M V Glenogle
10 Mar 2010
Ailsa Lawrence wrote:
Hi I was wondering if you might be able to assist me. I am looking to find a photograph of the ship which my grandad served on during the war.

The information I have is as follows ; M V Glenogle, he was a royal navel gunner aboard a merchant ship. He boarded Glenogle in 1942 and remained with it until 1946. During this time he went to Malta and Egypt.

This particular ship at the time I believe was the only one in the med which could be unloaded from both sides.
Looking for a photograph of this ship or know any information about it.

Ailsa Lawrence

19 Apr 2012
Vincent Gillen wrote:
Hi there,

Hope these images are of use. My father in law served on the ship from 42 -44

Vincent Gillen

Empire Newton
9 Mar 2010
GRAHAM wrote:

I am making an audio visual history covering my father's time as a young radio officer in the merchant marine during the second world war. it is purely for my family. Dad served on Artisan when it was brand new and was called "Empire Newton". if you have images of the ship during it's early years or even construction, that would very helpful.

Thank you

Col G

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UNI 12 Whale Catcher
9 Mar 2010
David Asgeir-Nielsen wrote:
I have a small private museum on the Bluff, Durban; specialising in Durban's Whaling History. I recently received a painting by one HANSEL LUND "48" depicting a whale caters wrecked on rocks on the Natal South Coast.

Sources[unconfirmed] tell me it was the UNI 12 Captained by Gunner/ Captain Ornez. I am interested in finding out more about the painter.

I have tried contacting all the remaining Lund's in no avail.

12 Apr 2011
sidcunha wrote:
Hi David
I found your article re whaling in South Africa.
Im writing a screenplay on whaling in South Africa,specifically on the Hangklip whaling station ,Bettys Bay outside Cape Town and am trying to locate a Rolf Larsen,who was a whaler here in Durban.Do you know if he is alive and contact details for him?
Do you have any info on the Hangklip station?
Please give me more info re your whaling museum.Where can we view?
Kind regards
Sid Cunha
2 Nov 2012
Dwain Dreyer Larsen wrote:
I have read threads of people trying to contact my grandfather Rolf Larsen, please contact me
4 Jan 2014
Hawksworth, Mark (M) wrote:
Hi David
I've been trying to find pictures of the Uni 12 which was wrecked off Umdoni Point. The last picture of the wreck I saw was some twenty years ago in the pub at the Southern Cross Hotel, in Scottburgh.
There are still some remnants of the Uni 12 visible in the rocks of Umdoni Point at low tide.
I would be really grateful if you could share your pictures and information on the Uni 12 with me.
Kind regards

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9 Mar 2010
David Asgeir-Nielsen wrote:

I have open a small whaling museum on the Bluff, Durban [] While surfing the web, I notice you know quiet a bit about some of the whale catchers that hunted off Durban, and there role in the war effort [Oct 2006 Kos XXIII].

My interest is specifically UNION WHALING COMPANY [were my grandfather, uncles & father served; having left Norway after the war]. Unfortunately, most of this history/ information has been lost.

I am trying to collate as much as possible.

Do you have any information of interest? David Asgeir-Nilsen

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Bluff Durban
9 Mar 2010
Michael Bootes wrote:
I am looking for any old photos of buildings on or around the Bluff in Durban South Africa, If anyone could help it would be greatly appreciated.

captain carl olsen
25 Feb 2010
June Schei wrote:
my name is june schei (nee olsen) and my grandfather was a trawler captain working for irvin and johnson before his death.

my father was carl christian burton olsen (now deceased) and the little i know of my grandfather was told to me by my dad.

my grandfather was born in copenhagen and died approximately 80 years ago from a burst appendix. my grandmother was named florence and i can remember as a child her telling me stories of my grandfather and of his seal clubbing activities (which horrified me at the time!).

my dad had a photograph of a group of men standing among dead seals on some island but unfortunately the photo has vanished.

is it possible that the captain olsen in john marsh's article/book is my grandfather?



11 Dec 2010
Gavin Olsen wrote:
Dear June
I am busy tracing family origins on my fathers side. My great Grandmother was also Florence Emelia ( nee FIVAZ) . Your dad and my grandfather were brothers.I to have read of this Captain Olsen and have wondered the same thing. MY grandfather was John George Olsen and he married my gran Isabella Jacoba (Swanepoel) and they had 13 children of which my dad is the last.
If you have any info on your grandmother and father then I would be grateful in helping trace lineage to origins.I have stories of us originating in Norway but you mention Denmark?
Gavin Olsen
28 Oct 2011
Lionel Owen wrote:
Hi Gavin,

We are busy researching the Olsen family tree and find that you mention John George Olsen.

So far we also have a John George Louis Olsen born 12 October 1892. His father carl Johan was married to a Fivaz lady.

Is this the same John George that you mention in your message?


13 Jan 2015
Marilyn Bezuidenhout wrote:
captain carl olsen
See comment by June Schei (who is my cousin).

Captain carl olsen was my grandfather. He was married to Florence Burton, which is where uncle Carl got the Burton part in his name.

Their Children were (All deceased by 2013):
Florence (married a Baldwin) >> Clive and Winston sons
Jean (married Theodore Davies)
Maude Lester (married Jacobsz, then Freidrich Carl Edward Gratz)>> Robert and Marilyn
Patricia (married Selwyn Eberlein) Deceased December 2013

Perhaps this will help with research.

There might be other references to this person also on this page

24 Feb 2010
clarence lee rosche wrote:
my great grandfather carl heinrich rosche was a career seaman.
he sailed from germay to the united states via liverpool many times between the years 1855-1865 on these ships:
date ship captain
1855 louise marie wenke
1856 "" ""
1856 "" ""
1857 johanna nordenhat
1858 washington wenke
1858 aequator thivan
1859 luna warkmeisters
1860 luna "" (this is where is documented to have sank or ran aground)
1860 bremenhaven hiken
1861 bremen meyer
1861 sirius poppe
1864 schiller bahr

any suggestions or help would be greatly appreciated!!!! lee

1 Oct 2014
b wenke wrote:
Greetings Clarence,
I saw your post this is a Manifest for the Ship Louise Marie under Capt. Wenk e. There is a Carl with no last name in the manifest. Ports Bremen, Germany to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
24 May 1855.

Best of Luck on your search,
Barbara Wenke

21 Feb 2010
Zulu Diver wrote:

Hello! Good day. I'm hoping you will be able to provide information about the ship "TECUMSEH" which ran aground at the tip of Inhaca Island, Mozambique on 23-11-1932.

Ship was registered in Hong Kong to the Standard Transportation Co., a wholy owned subsidiary of the The Standard Transportation Co. of New Jersey, USA. Perhaps due to this affiliation the locals referred to it as the "American Wreck" but there is little additional information available about the vessel's history, the cause of the accident, etc.

In December 1932 there was a hearing or legal enquiry into the circumstances of the accident but the results of it are not known. If possible, can you please shed some light on this shipwreck?

Gertrude Wadner
21 Feb 2010
Chris Lambert wrote:
Dear sirs, I note that you have a 1937 photograph of the Irvin and Johnson trawler "Gertrude Wadner" in your collection.

My grandftaher, her skipper at the time, died on board her out of Las Palmas on her delivery voyage in 1932, at which time she was named "Gertrude W".
Chris Lambert

Swimming in Cape Town
13 Feb 2010
Kobus Scheepers wrote:
I am doing research on the history of swimming in Cape Town. Until 1900 much of the sport took place in the habrour 'Graving Dock'.

Looking for any photographs of this Graving Dock, and perhaps of swimming and water polo matches held there?

African Enterprise
31 Jan 2010
Erna Buber-deVilliers nee Schutte wrote:
I would love to learn more about the "African Enterprise". I was 5 years old when I sailed in this vessel from New York to Cape Town. The new USA Ambassador to South Africa also travelled with us. See Die Burger 17 Nov 1954.

We had scarcely set sail when a 3-day hurricane hit us. Our heavy sea-trunks careened around the cabin floor like matchboxes. Everyone was confined to their cabins, sick as dogs, except myself, my dad and the captain. I remember having dinner with my dad and the captain, the only persons in the dining room! Our cabin steward, a dear, elderly black gentleman with a broad Southern accent, brought my mother some food, and tried to make her eat. "You'll feel better, Honey, if you get something down."

british warship wrangler
30 Jan 2010
chantal simpon wrote:
hi ,im looking for my great,great grandfather who came to walvisbay in 1881 .Actually he died here in Walvisbay - his monument is in our museum.

I am looking for any information about the Simpson family.

S S Kadie
19 Jan 2010
Julius Kohler wrote:
I am searching for a photograph or sketch of the deck layout or, ideally, the ship's plans of the S S Kadie, the Cape Coaster that sank in 1865 in the Breede River mouth in order to build a model of this ship.
26 Sep 2011
Riverton Stud wrote:
Dear Julius Kohler,
Did you ever succeed in finding deck plans for the SS Kadie?

We would be most interested as we have opened Barry House as a guest house and living "museum" of the Barry family. Barry & Nephews commissioned the steamer SS Kadie. She was built on the Clyde in Scotland.

We do have a photograph of the SS Kadie, but it is behind glass in a frame. Will not scan easily or well unfortunately but I could try if it would be of anyhelp.

Attached please find a photograph of her original brass bell

Kind regards
Natasha Barry

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

10 Jan 2010
Neil Hodgson wrote:
I am looking for a photo / image of the Merchant Vessel "Hopecrest" My father who was 15 at the time was on board in 1939 when it called into Cape Town and I believe a gun was mounted onto it whilst there as WW2 had just broken out.

The ships official number was 161581


8 Jan 2010
Graham Farnell wrote:
I have an artifact from this ship but can find no information as to what type of ship she was, where she operated and what happenned to her.
3 Aug 2010
Louw, Jaco wrote:
Dear Graham. There was two trawlers in South Africa with the name "Cap d'Ailly".

The one was a side trawler built in 1956 by AG Weser at Bremerhaven in Germany. She is 178 feet long and was renamed "Southern Raider CTA 139". She still operates today out of the Cape Docks.

The other was a stern trawler built in 1971 by Ateliers & Chantiers in France. She is 151 feet long. Originally called "Cap d'Ailly", she was also known as "St.Kilda" and "Kolmanskop". Today she is known as "Maria Marine CTA 158" and still operates out of the Cape Docks.


Jaco Louw

Penny Ferrie
7 Jan 2010
Roelof de Haan wrote:
What was the name of the original Penny Ferrie in Cape Town Harbour?
I know the original is in the museum. Can you please advise me of its name. Also, what was its name in the 1960's ?

Help much appreciated. Roelof de Haan

10 Dec 2009
jack wrote:
Hi there, I'm typing this on behalf of my father, Jack, who is sitting next to me. He is 88 (89 next month) and we recently hooked him up to the internet, and were looking around for references to a ship he was Radio Operator on when it was torpedoed and sunk in March 1943. he was one of the survivors. We just came across your post on a message board that reads:

"I am trying to find out any information on the sinking of the SS Nirpura which i believe was torpedoed in 1919.My great grandfathers nephew was one of the men who died and so far we know that he decided to swim back to the ship after it was hit and sinking presumably to try to save others.Any info on it would be grateful."

We can't find any refernce to a Nirpura that would have been sunk in 1919. As far as can be seen, the one my father was on (built in 1921) was the only vessel by that name.

Further details of this sinking can be seen here (this information can be found on a number of websites, including

1943 - At 2322, U-160 made her first attack on Convoy DN-21 about 40 miles south of Port St John's, South Africa, sank the Harvey W. Scott and Nirpura & damaged the Tibia. The Harvey W. Scott in station #32 was stuck by one torpedo on the port side at the #2 hold. The ship settled slowly as the engines were secured and the radio operator sent a distress signal. 11 minutes after the hit all eight officers, 34 crewmen and 19 armed guards (the ship was armed with one 4in, one 3in & four 20mm guns) abandoned ship in the four lifeboats. The vessel sank just after midnight, plunging bow first. 16 survivors in one boat were picked up by the Argentine SS Ombu and landed at Durban on 6 March. On 3 March, the motorboat with 7 survivors, including the master and chief mate, made landfall near Port St Johns. They traded the boat to the natives for food and clothes and were taken by horse and wagon through the jungle to Umtata, Natal. The remaining two boats landed at Umtata on 4 and 6 March. All survivors were then taken by train to Durban. 38 men from the Nirpura were lost and 88 (including the master) were picked up by the SAAF crash launch R-8 and landed at Durban. Tibia was hit at 2322 by a torpedo on port side, which immediately caused a heavy list to that side. The engine was stopped and the starboard tanks were counterflooded. The crew (with the exception of most Chinese) had worked efficiently and at 2341, the ship set course for Durban at full speed, arriving at 1740 on 4 March.

As you can see, it's highly unlikely anyone would have been swimming back to save anyone. When ships like this were sunk, one had to try and get away from it very quickly to avoid being sucked down with the sinking ship. Unfortunatley many men did drown, but often this was because they could not swim, were injured, were too loaded down with clothing and perhaps panicking, etc., etc.. My father also says that there weren't enough lifeboats for all the people.

Is there any more you know about your relation?

Sincerely, Jack (and his daughter, Patricia)

4 Dec 2011
Milly & Adrian Rowe wrote:
Good afternoon I have only just read the email from "Jack" dated 10 Dec 2009. I am close to completing the story of Convoy DN 21 in which the SS Nirpura was one of the ships. I am hoping that Jack is still alive as I would like to make contact with him or his daughter Patricia, as my grandfather, Major Adrian M Howie O.B.E. was also on the Nirpura and lost his life as a result of her sinking. regards Adrian Rowe
8 Dec 2011
Milly & Adrian Rowe wrote:
Good evening

I would like to thank you for forwarding the email below and wish to give you feed-back. I have received a reply from Patricia telling me that her father is still alive about to turn 91 and still has a good memory. I am looking forward to receiving useful information about the SS Nirpura and convoy DN 21.

kind regards

Adrian Rowe

There are references to the other Nirpura sunk in 1919 also on this page

4 Dec 2009
Dimitri Galon wrote:
Want any photo of the whaler KOS XXIII, later UJ 2104/DARVIK.

We are a group of Greek divers which plan to visit the sunken vessel near the island of Atypalaia (Stampalia).

A photo of the vessel, or a similar one from the KOS type, it will be a great value for our investigation.

I thank you very much in advance.

Dimitri Galon

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

THPV Bembridge
29 Nov 2009
Rafal Zahorski wrote:
THPV Bembridge is now in Poland, in Szczecin - I towed her almost as a scrub from Gillingham to Szczeicin on February 2009 - she is now during a long process of her restoration.

I am looking for any contact of anybody who was sailing on her or any other TH Pilot Tenders in a period of 1938-1971. I am looking for any single document (original or colour scan) any marine stuff related to TH (like uniforms or their parts) pictures, movies and the like. I am a boss of a restoration team - she will be in the future her own Museum - related ot a TH history and activity ( so pilots and seamen who sailed on her or other pilot tenders ), Smith's Dock activity. I am looking for any single paper with "bembridge" word in it!!! Especially I am looking for a log books and other documents. You know what I mean.

We would like to publish a list of seamen who sailed on her with dates and ranks.

I have several log books - better say a few of them. I have 3 machinery log books from a machinery room - but you can see a crew lists (they are coming from 3 different years from 60') and one chief officer log book from 70. We have only one log book but only from 1975 - so when Cosag Marine Services was an owner of her.

We have a nice team of restorers in UK and in Poland. Please join us!

he website for the Bembridge is at

We are receiving any docs and pictures and after a professional scanning - we are always sending everything back to the owners. Some people are giving us their things for a Museum. We are looking for a families of dead seamen - they have a lot of souvenirs and very often a younger generation do not know what to do with that and very often such a "treasures" are going to a garbage can. That's why we are looking for it everywhere!!!!

Many thanks in advance for you answer

Best regards


There might be other references to this ship also on this page

27 Nov 2009
Alfred Shaw wrote:
The 400 ton barque FLORENCE left New York in late 1859 (probably August, September, or October, 1859) loaded with coal and destined for California.

My greatgrandfather, Alfred Shaw, was aboard the boat as a crew member. The boat sustained some leaks and 89 days out it landed in the Falkland Islands for repair. It left the islands 8 September 1860 and was bound for San Francisco.

I would like to have a date of departure from New York, a crew list, and any information about the FLORENCE.

SS Paul Paix
25 Nov 2009
John Tillotson wrote:
I am trying to find out a little about the ships that my father Arthur Tillotson sailed:-

SS Paul Paix

as 3rd Officer between Aug 26th 1925 and Nov 11th 1925

as 2nd Officer between Nov 19th 1925 and Jan 24th 1926

Any help with which shipping line owned this ship during this period and general info on the type and size of the ship would be gratefully received

the barque agamemnon and the Lyttelton - 1872
20 Nov 2009
Beverley Brown wrote:
Do you have any information on the ships mentioned above.?

Watussi Woermann Line
16 Nov 2009
Beatrix Sampson wrote:
Am anxious to locate the passenger list of a voyage of the Watussi which left Cape Town in November 1929, called at a port in SWA (Namibia) perhaps Walvis Bay to take on more passengers and then sailed for Germany, Bremen or Hamburg.

If anyone can make suggestions of where I might look for this passenger list, I would be immensely grateful.

Many thanks Bea

14 Nov 2009
Anton Rijsdijk wrote:
About the Inhace wrecks

There is a (still visible?) wreck aground close to the lighthouse house at Inhaca. I think it is the Tecumseh as this ran aground, instead of sinking

Close by there are many wreck parts in rather shallow water. I think this is another ship, but I am not sure.

By the way, close to Maputo on the peninsula of Macanette there is a wreck of a tug. Does anyone know more about this ship?


There might be other references to this ship also on this page

2 Nov 2009
Darby Domoney wrote:
I am endevouring to find details on a ship called the "Chatham"

This vessel brought a distant relative of mine from Southampton England, to Algoa Bay.

It departed on 4 August 1859 and arrived with Aided Immigration Passengers on 24 October 1859 under the Captaincy of J Gimber. I am seeking a photograph or sketch or any log records pertaining to this trip.

Any assistance you are able to offer me would be appreciated. Best regards

Darby Domoney

9 Jul 2011
Alec and Debbie wrote:

I have recently discovered that my Great Great Grandfather Adam Hood and his family came over on this ship. Did you manage to find out any more information and would you be prepared to share it with me.

Kind regards Debbie

U-197, shot down by Sqdn. 259/C & 265/N
5 Oct 2009
Gavin Anthony wrote:
We are trying to find some information about my mother inlaw's father. Apparently he was part of one of these squadrons (259/C & 265/N)to have shot down the only U-Boat off the Natal Coast. His name was Denis Frances Thwaites Anderson. Any infformation would be gladly appreciated.
21 Sep 2009
Gavin Arnold wrote:

I am interested in a photo of SUTHERLAND freighter in 1941.

My Father in Law was serving on this ship during the war when it visited Cape Town for repairs in December 1941 and due to war time restrictions does not have a picture of the ship or of Cape Town docks in 1941 (if you also have a general picture of Cape Town docks in December 1941 that would also be appreciated). It would be a nice reminder for him of his impromptu stop at Cape Town.

Thank you, Gavin Arnold

17 Feb 2012
Bruce Munro wrote:
I had found the attached photo of a vessel call "Sutherland" in my grans cottage, and am trying to find some info on as well.

My grandfather was in the merchant naval, I’d have to look in his log book that was found to with the vessels he served on to see if this was one of them. Not sure.

I hope this picture is the vessel you looking for, if you have any info and it is the same would you kindly share what info you do have on this vessel.

Thanks and kind regards

Bruce Munro

Royal Mail Twin Screw Steamer "Norman"
10 Sep 2009
Beverley Barrett wrote:
I am trying to trace the passenger lists for the ship Royal Mail Twin Screw Steamer "Norman" that left Southhampton for South Africa around 1901 / 1902.I suspect my great grandfather travelled out to SA on this ship.

This ship existed as I have a postcard showing an illustration of the ship, writen on by someone. The heading of the post card reads THE UNION SHIP COMPANY'S. then a picture of the ship beneath with Royal Mail Twin Screw Steamer "Norman" leaving Southhampton for South Africa.written underneath. I am desperately trying to trace my great grandfather's details of arrival here in SA. This wretched man left no details about his arrival or where he came from. I am looking for the passenger list in order to try and get some more information on him. He was ROBERT HENRY CUNNINGHAM from BELFAST IRELAND originally. Where he boarded I am unsure.I cannot even find the ship "Norman", just vague references that are no help at all. If any kind and very clever person could tell me where to find her passenger lists I would just be so releieved and grateful. Please contact me,

Very Grateful Thanks Bev Barrett

28 May 2010
Rosemary Dixon-Smith wrote:
Re your query on passenger lists for the steamer Norman ca 1901/1902:

Probably by now you have discovered the ancestorsonboard search facility powered by This data consists of passenger lists taken from British Board of Trade records from 1890 to the 1960s (anything prior to 1890 was regrettably destroyed). If you go into their search form and enter what you know so far - name of passenger, name of ship, date parameter, port of destination etc - you should be able to pinpoint a possible voyage for your g grandfather. As always, if the name is fairly commonly-found, you may get several likely hits - initials are not always provided.

The Norman was built in Belfast (by Harland and Wolff) in 1894 and was part of the Union Company's fleet of vessels for the Cape trade. On her maiden voyage she arrived at Cape Town on 26 Nov 1894, and from then ran continuously in the mail service until 1910. In World War 1 she was used as a transport.

Rosemary DS

5 Sep 2009
David Shackleton wrote:
I am trying to find out details of a small South African Railways & Harbours Administration tug KATHLEEN which saw service in Port Elizabeth and later in Durban where she was eventually scrapped circa 1961/2.

According to my information she was built in Beira, Mocambique, in 1925 and turned up in South Africa during World War 2.

In particular I am tryint to find information on her earlier career before she arrived in Durban, for exampleher builder's name, any previous names and when changed, her owners/operators and to whom she was sold in Durban for scrapping.

Thank you

HMS Vanessa
30 Aug 2009
Jen Byrne wrote:
Hi, I am looking for a picture of the HMS Vanessa and if possible a name list of the last crew before she was sunk in WW2. I am looking for any information on Lawrence (Lawrie) Payton that was only 16 at the time and a member of her crew.
19 Aug 2009
Dear Sirs,
I am looking for any photograph you have on the EL AMIN....later called SAMARINDA I belive......I am writing a book about my family.....I was only 2 years old when my family was transfered on the EL AMIN from Greece to Aden through the Suez canal around 1950..........I beleive the EL AMIN was owned by the Besse Family interests who were based in Aden. Any info would be gladly appreciated. Best regards,

Phaedon Lascaris

H.M.S.A.S Beaver
10 Aug 2009
Roy Jennings wrote:
I'm looking for some detail on the H.M.S.A.S Beaver. Apparently it was sunk off the coast of Greece, presumably during WW2.

Many thanks.

13 Apr 2012
Mark Leven-Marcon wrote:
Hello Roy,

With regards to your request for information on the HMSAS Beaver I can tell you the following.

My Father's first cousin, Tom Baker, was on board the Beaver when it hit a mine. Tom was saved and survived the ordeal.

A recording was made (vinyl record) of Tom's version of the incident once he had recovered - we still have this.

My Father is still alive and knows much more about the details of the Beaver incident.

I will put you in touch via email if you need more detail.



Captian Ian Harland
7 Aug 2009
Patricia Tyrannes nee HARLAND wrote:
I have look back at the photos with such a lump in my throat my dad was Captian Ian Harland and he was Captain of the JR More they had to go to rescuse the Amie Lykes that had run aground off Alawl shore(sorry not sure of the spelling). And before him was a wonderful old man Reg Moore who had taught my dad to buil the little ships in bottles.

My dad then went on to be a pilot and in the end he was Senior pilot and sadley passed away very suddenly a month after bring in the QE2 for her first visit to Durban in 1979. So this is a little more history to go with your photos.

regards Trish Tyrannes nee Harland

ss congella IX -likely date....1892
5 Aug 2009
inderlall kissoon wrote:
Dear Sir/Madam
I am researching my background and trying desperately to gather information.

i managed to obtain my grandmother's documents from the archives in Durban/Natal/South Africa in the 1890s.

Her voyage started @, I believe, Calcutta.

She hailed from Ghazipur in the Northern Province of Uttar Pradesh.

She hailed from a village called Wossea: unfortunately I haven't been able to locate this village as yet. I have become fully aware that there's has been a number of names changes over the years by the different ruling powers, hence the difficulty.

I accesses the ship's list website but am unable to find indepth details about this ship.

It would be very much appreciated if your office could me put me in the right direction.

Yours faithfully Inderlall KIssoon

27 Jul 2009
Craig Galbraith wrote:
Hi I am looking for information on the brig, Alacrity captained by John Findlay. I am looking for a 1816/17 ships log; shipyard; plans or pictures.

Any help will be much appreciated. Craig Galbraith

24 Feb 2011
Jean wrote:
I have a book called The Findlay Letters 1806-1870, written in 1954 and published in Pretoria.

The first chapter discusses the brig Alacrity and John Findlay's family. There is a drawing of the brig, but for all I know, it could have been drawn in 1954.

My interest is that John Findlay's nephew, George Findlay (1798-July 1870) (John also had a son George Findlay 1808-Feb 1870) also sailed the Alacrity. The nephew is an ancestor of my husband. I could possibly scan the pages if you are interested.

If you have gathered any information about the brig, I would love to see it.

Thank you


29 Aug 2011
Warwick Hojem wrote:

I understand the missionary John Brownlee was on board this ship and it landed in Cape Town in late 1816/early 1817. I am also keen to find out whether there is a passenger list as there was also the possibility that a Thomas Peter McDonald was onboard, too and he is a relative of mine. There is also mention that he and Brownlee were cousins and if on the same ship, this would possibly further support this theory.

Thank you (and congratulations on a very informative and useful site)

Warwick Hojem
Auckland, New Zealand

19 Jul 2009
Denis Henning wrote:
I am trying to obtain more information about a ship/boat called the "Monsoon" active in the latter part of the 20th century (may even still be in service).

I'd like to know what type of vessel it she was and what she was used for. I think it may have been stationed in the Cape.

Agwimonte/Storaas/Queen Anne
15 Jul 2009
Anneke Kloppers wrote:
Hi there
I am currently busy doing research on shipwrecks along the L'Agulhas coast.

Can you please help me with photos of the following shipwrecks:
Queen Anne

I would appreciate it if you will let me know where I can get photos of these three shipwrecks.

Anneke Kloppers

m.v Ruijs/m.v. Boissevain
9 Jul 2009
Garry van der Tang wrote:
My Dad, Gerhardt Johannes van der Tang was purser aboard the m.v Ruijs during and immediately after WW2.

When the company decided to trade between the Far East and South America in 1947 he became purser on the m.v. Boissevain.

I remember him telling the story of a voyage from South Africa to South America where there was threat of u-boat activity the captain had the engines shut down allowing the vessel to drift on the current so that the thumping of the motor and the thrashing of the propeller could not be picked up by u-boat sonar listening equipment. It was on that occasion 'de oue' had the masts cut down to the level of the funnel in order to reduce the ship's visibility below the horizon from a lookout on a possible u-boat. This did reduce the range of the radio, but evidently was regarded a worthwhile price.

I don't know whether the Graf Spee was still active in those waters. I don't know either whether it was on this occasion, but my Dad did refer to an occasion when drinking water ran out on the ship and beer was rationed as a substitute. Perhaps the captain of the Boissevain also decided reduce the height of the masts for that same reason.

I also know that those three sister ships were regarded as 'the lucky' or 'charmed ships' because they came through the war unscathed. I think I remember my Dad saying that the Ruijs had 23 near misses from u-boat torpedoes when on 'the Malta Run' early in the war.

Sincerely, G.F. van der Tang

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

Shipwreck of Steamer "Carlos de Eizaguirre" 1917
1 Jul 2009
José Luis Gracia wrote:
My name is José Luis Gracia, from Spain, and I've heard that someone from the museum is working on the Spanish Steamer "Carlos de Eizaguirre" 's shipwreck (that happened on 24th may 1917 nearby Cape Town)

I'm the great grand son of someone who died in that shipwreck and I'm very interested to follow the investigations, if it's possible, of course... There's is a book of 220 pages in Spain about that shipwreck and it's very interesting for me and my family.

Best regards,

José Luis Gracia

ss Lornaston
30 Jun 2009
frank duke wrote:
my father was donkey man on the ss Lornaston when she was torpedoed by u275 on the 8th of march 1945.

my father told me that the torpedo hit the propeller

11 May 2011
a g muller wrote:
Well, it was my uncle, Helmut Wehrkamp who was commander of U 275 at that time, and torpedoed the Lornaston. Gladly, no lives were lost on that vessel, as far as I know.

Kind regards
Armin G. Mueller

SS Niew Holland/SS La Cliwa
15 Jun 2009
Piet Johanssen wrote:
I am looking for information on 2 ships who carried soldiers in WW 2 on the east coast of South African

* SS Niew Holland Between Mombasa and Durban in 1940
* SS La Cliwa on the same route at the same time


Piet Johanssen

1 Jan 2012
Ton en Sylvia wrote:
I was appr.engeneer in 1958 o.b. ss Nieuw Holland; owned by the KJCPL or Royal Interocean Lines. Are you still looking for info?????? and what kind in particular.???

Regards from Holland

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

Nova Soctia
12 Jun 2009
Julie Malherbe wrote:

I would like to find out more about the Nova Scotia. My late grandfather was a survivor of the torpedoing in November 1942.

Kind regards Julie

14 Jun 2009
ZuluDiver wrote:
I'm writing to ask four questions, if you don't mind answering, please:

Do you, perhaps, have the exact GPS coordinates of the sinking of the 'Nova Scotia' which reportedly happened on 20-November-1942?

Is the location of the shipwreck's underwater remains closer to the southern end or the northern end of Inhaca Island, on the coast of Mozambique?

Is the 'Nova Scotia' the same ship as the one still partially above water today on the northern point of Inhaca Island?

If the shipwreck on Inhaca's northen point is NOT the 'Nova Scotia' do you, per chance, know the name of this ship or the circumstances about how it got to be there?

Many thanks.  

26 Nov 2010
Fatima_Lemos_Oliveira wrote:
Dear Ms. Malherbe, I was searching the internet on the Nova Scotia to further complementing the memories that my father is writing on this subject. My father is a retired officer of the Portuguese Navy and, at the time the Nova Scotia was sank, he was an ensign in the "Afonso de Albuquerque", the Portuguese ship sent to rescue the survivers.

I do not know if you are still interested in receiving information on this subject, but I have some information (2 published articles and my father's memories) as well as a drawing showing the Afonso the Albuquerque rescuing the victims. This drawing was made by another ensign who was also a eye witness to this event.

Should you like to have copies of the articles and the drawing, I would be pleased to send them to you, either by email or mail.

Best regards,

Maria de F

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

hms navasa/narvasa
10 Jun 2009
teresa smith wrote:
during ww2 my grandmothers brother sailed to india on this ship.

we have two photos,one shows the ship,the other shows him and other troops by their tent in india. searching the internet i found one ship named ss narvasa,according to australian records this ship was a steamship built in 1956 in glasgow.

hoping to trace my great-uncle i hoped to pick up a passenger list of some sort.

did either of these ships transport troops to india during the second world war, if so which one and which government should i contact for further information.

8 Jun 2009
Brian Macintyre wrote:
I am interested in the ship the MOUNT PENTELIKON freighter.

My grandfather was the ship's master when it was the Empire Conveyor and went down with it on 20 Jun 1940.

I did not realise that there was a photograph of the ship in existence even when under a different flag and am interested in a scan of it to have printed for my father.
Yours aye, Brian Macintyre

SS Gemstone
24 May 2009
Roy Dentandt wrote:
My father served on the SS Gemstone. Looking for a photo and details of where the ship was built.

I'm trying to track my late father's war time experiences and I think the Gemstone was built in the Cape.

Regards Roy Dentandt

13 Jul 2011
Gary Everett wrote:
Dear Sir.
RE Nicholas John Dentandt,

I also had a relative on the "SS Gemstone" he was the first radio operator Charles B Smith.

To answer your initial query the "Gemstone" was built by Sir James Laing & Sons at the Deptford Yard Sunderland. I obtained this while researching Charlies history and came across this site with your enquiry.

It might be presumtuous of me but I will enclose some other information that might be of assistance to you.

Your fathers name was on the same POW camp roster as Charlies "Fukuoka #3 civilian camp.

The captain of the "Gemstone" E J Griffith and AB Sahadi Hassan " Stanvac Calcutta" were still on board the "Stier" and survived to be taken to France and became POW's at "Milag Nord" merchant seaman POW camp. I hope this imformation is of some use to you.

Kindest regards Gary Everett

SS Pensilva
19 May 2009
Jane Martin wrote:
Looking for a picture of SS Pensilva - a steamer built in Hartlepool, England and sunk in 1939 or 1940 by a German U Boat. My father was a crew member in 1936 although I have yet to discover whether he was on board when it was sunk.

Star of the East
15 May 2009
George Birbeck wrote:
I'm interested in the clipper ship, "Star of the East", which I believe was wrecked off the coast of South Africa in 1861. I have reason to believe that my gr-gr-grandfather's brother, David Birbeck, could have been a passenger on board when she got into difficulties. David had gone to Australia circa 1852 in search of gold and I know that he went to New Zealand around 1862, returned to Australia in 1865, and then went back to England before setting out for America in 1870.

What I don't know is why he would have been on the Star of the East in 1861, or indeed which way the ship was headed when it was wrecked. Was it going from Britain to Australia, returning to Britain, or somewhere else?

Any information about the ship, the circumstances surrounding the disaster, or even any of the passengers would be most welcome.

George E.J.Birbeck.

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1820 Chapman
8 May 2009
Alan Montgomery wrote:
I am at present doing research on the 1820 Chapman.Have you got any information. Thank you

Carnarvon Castle
30 Apr 2009
Eric_Boggis wrote:
I was repatriated to Britain from Durban in 1945/6 on the Carnarvon Castle, having been evacuated from Palestine to South Africa for the duration of the Second World War.

On a visit to the Maritime Museum in Cape Town I saw a model of the above vessel and wondered whether anyone has the Ships log? I ask this because whilst on the trip back to the U.K. my Mother died and through the kindness of the then Captain my mother was taken back home, I am presuming that there would be a reference in the Log.

Yours Truly Eric Boggis

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HMS Castor
17 Apr 2009
Wendy Borello wrote:
The only HMS Castor in South African waters that I'm aware of was the naval flagship frigate that took survivors from the ill-fated HMS Birkenhead in 1852. Launched in 1832 she was stationed in the Cape at Simons Bay when the Birkenhead was wrecked. It's unclear from my sources (A Deathless Story, in particular) but presumably she returned to England before her 3 years commission (1855-1858) along the African coasts and perhaps brought out families of men in service in the Cape.

Her commissions included:
1833-36 Lisbon and on particular service.
1838-40 Mediterranean.
1843-47 East Indies Station.
1850-52 Cape of Good Hope.
1855-58 Cape of Good Hope, East and West Coasts of Africa.
There's no mention of passengers in any of the accounts that I've had access to.


19 Oct 2009
Richard Wood wrote:

I too am looking for info on the HMS Castor, particularly the crew members on or around 1853. I am looking for info as I see that certain crew were awarded medals, and am trying to find out the who , what why and where and to see if there was any family link between myself and a Richard Wood who was apparently crew

If you could through any info my way it would be appreciated

Richard Wood.

6 Sep 2011
David Hannam wrote:

I expect that you will have found some answers by now but a Richard Wood was a boy seaman on HMS Castor and is on the Medal roll for the South Africa 1853 medal.

Regards Dave

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William Eggerts/Macuti - Beira Mozambique
10 Apr 2009
Raine Alexander wrote:
Thank you to Piet Jonker and Beverly Nelson for information on this Beira wreck. I too used to go to Beira in the early 1960s as a child and remember clambering about the William Eggerts which you could only do at low tide. It was covered in barnacles and the smell of the sea on its rusted bones was very distinct. I have a closer photo of the wreck taken in about 1962/3 if you would like me to post it. I think my dad took some cine footage of it too.

Its a shame that the wreck is now only bits of crumbled iron, for I remember its vast cavernous insides, but the ship is still visible in Google Maps so it must be more than just a pile of rusty old iron.

I read somewhere that the other wreck is a tug/freighter also called the Macuti which was deliberately beached in 1985 to protect the lighthouse and to stop the sands in front of it from washing away.

But I am more interested in the William Eggerts and would like to know more information about her.

25 Mar 2009
Francisco Ivo wrote:
The first Macuti ship was the Deutch Willem Eggerts. In the last years of the 19th century and beginnings of the 20 th century it use to transport coal from Durban to the African East Coast.

It finished in Beira were she was put in front of the Macuti Lighg House to protect it from the tides. Nowadays it is almost has the base.

About 1985, another ship, a trawler (rebocador in Portuguese) was put ther about 20 metres from the old one. Now its breaking apart.

The Willem Eggerts, before becoming a coal ship was a passenger sail ship, owned by a Dutch family.

Mr. Jonker, a Dutch citizen is writing a book about this ship.

Francisco Ivo

29 Aug 2009
David Shackleton wrote:
Greetings On 13 October 1966 I photographed a tug with the name MACUTI in Beira while on a voyage in the Portuguese passenger/cargo vessel MOCAMBIQUE along the Mozambique coast.

It would appear that wreck illustrated is the same vessel but I cannot be absolutely sure in view of the rather stern on view. If it is, I would be very interested to know the circumstances of her being on the beach at Beira and the date of her grounding.

My interest in Mozambique tugs goes back to the end of December 1957 when I photographed the TEMBE sailing from Durban on 12 December 1957 towing the dredger ADOLFO LOUREIRO.

Since then I have managed to photograph many of these Mozambique tugs, all of which appear to have vanished without trace. If any other readers know what eventually happened to them, I would be very pleased if they could let me know.

Many thanks

David Shackleton

26 Jul 2010
flightops wrote:
Dear Raine, I have just returned from another trip to Beira where we saw the Macuti and William Eggerts. I have been going to Beira for the last 7 years and notice the decay of the ships even in that time. I would be interested to see any photos from earlier times and could email you some from recently if you like. Regards Paul
20 Aug 2010
Raine Alexander wrote:
Message for Piet Jonker ...
The remains of the two ships at the lighthouse in Beira are the "Willem Eggerts" (1885) and the "Macuti" (1953).

The lighthouse is called "Farol do Macuti" or "Farol da Ponta Macuti" - "Lighthouse of the River Macuti". "Farol" is lighthouse in Portuguese.

There are more photos of the "Macuti" wreck on Sam Seyffert's photostream on Flickr.

The following information is for the MACUTI tug -

According to tradition built by NV Shipbuilding Union - Groningen. The Naval shipyard was located at the Uni SA Winschoterdiep in Groningen, the yard was later in the "New Northern Shipyards Ned" that went bankrupt in 80 years. The "MACUTI" was built for the Portuguese government in '53 was the biggest tug of Europe.

Details of the MACUTI, unfortunately in Portuguese, but understandable.
Tipo Rebocador the two helices
Construtor NV Shipbuilding Union
Local construà § à £ o Groningen - Holanda
Ano the construà § à £ o 1953
Tania Capi registo do Porto da Beira
Forums forums Comprimento a 59.68 m
Boca máxima 9.80 m
Arqueaà § à £ o Bruta 750.58 Toneladas
Arqueaà § à £ o LÃquida 226.66 Toneladas
Aparelho propulsor Duas Máquinas the dupla expansà £ o, the two cilindros cada, em 1953 por construÃdas Christiansen & Meyer em Harburg, Alemanha. Duas Caldeiras aquitubulares, construÃdas em 1953 por Thermodyn, em Roterdà £ o, Holanda.
Potà ª ncia 1700 cavalos
Armador Capi Tania do Porto da Beira - Beira



Seems like she operated in and out of Australia in her early days carrying a variety of different cargos. These are mainly shipping logs, but there are a couple of interesting stories involving her crew. Her captain for a time was Captain H. Feyes.

Regards and best wishes
Raine Alexander

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Almirante Goni
1 Apr 2009
Haavard Haraldson Salen wrote:
We are searching for informatin and preferably pictures of the whale catcher Almirante Goni in the period 1912-1925 when it where based at Bahía Aguila outside Puntas Arena, Chile, and at Deception Island, South Shetland.

It was built at Framnæs Mek. Verksted/Yard in 1912 in Sandefjord, Norway, for the company Soc. Ballenera de Maggelanes and Captain Adolf Amandus Andresen.

Later companies were Hektor AS and Cia Ballenora Espanola before it was sold and sailed back to Norway.

The ship still exists with the name Veslegut.

It would have been nice to know more of the early years of the ship.

14 Feb 2011
Alex Aguilar wrote:
Dear Haavard,

I have almost no information about the boat herself, but I do have some on the Compañía Ballenera Española, the company which owned the boat during 1924-25. If you are interested in information about this company and its operation, let me know the type of data that may be of your interest and I would certainly provide.

Also, I suppose that you are aware of the existence of a construction plan from the boat preserved at the Sandefjord Museum. Let me know if this were not the case and I can supply details or a reproduction.

Best wishes,

SMS Wolf
25 Mar 2009
Richard Guilliatt wrote:

I am a writer based in Sydney, Australia, and I'm writing a book about the German World War One commerce-raider SMS Wolf, which planted minefields off Cape Town and Cape Agulhas in February 1917. Several ships were sunk between February and June 1917, including the City of Athens.

I am interested in finding out whether any of the Wolf's mines washed ashore or sank any ships after the war ended in 1918. If you have any information on this issue I'd be most grateful to hear from yout.

Richard Guilliatt

24 Mar 2009
Dale Williams wrote:
Thys van der Merwe
I am a South African living in the USA and I am trying to research my family tree. I have just returned from a 3 week visit to Cape Town where I did a bit of research at the Simons'Town museum where my father and his father and mother and I think up to my 2nd great grandfather lived. I am trying to find passanger lists of ships that sailed from the UK to Cape Town and Simon's Town. We are in possesion of a diary of my 2nd great grandfather who came over on a ship called the DELIGHT. Mr George Hilliard (Hillyard) (my 2nd great grandfather) was sent from London to Simon's Bay (Simonstown) Cape of Good Hope in 1836 as a Tidewaiter and Locker (Customs). He arrived with his family on a ship called the "Delight" captained by a Mr. Jefferson arriving in Cape Town at the end of March 1837. He started work in the office on the 29th March 1837. We need passanger lists to find out who sailed with him.

I have found a record of a sloop named HMS DELIGHT (7) that sailed from Cape of Good Hope on April 4th 1823 to "this port" - presume this to be Simon's Town where I got the record from - arriving on April 5th. It sailed from Cape of Good Hope never to be seen again. I have heard that names were used over and over again so I presume a different ship called the Delight sailed from the UK to SA in 1836.

Any help that you can offer or even pointing me in the right direction would be much appreciated. Websites, names, address's and telephone numbers of organisations would be great.

Dale Williams

Depart N 3G
22 Mar 2009
Hans Eli Hansen wrote:
I am looking for information about a French schooner called "Depart" N 3G from
Gravelines. "Depart" was fishing in the Islandic waters in 1899.

Is it possible to find the crew list from 1899 and 1900. I wonder if she was involved in a collision in march/april 1899 where they rescued some Faroese fisherman.

I wonder if the maritim archives in Cherbourg can give me some information.

12 Mar 2009
Mick Greenway wrote:
Good day, I am looking for the passenger list of the DUART CASTLE.
It docked in Mossel Bay I believe on the 18.11.1880. There was a family named CUTHBERT who disembarked, they may well have been scheduled to disembark at Durban. Father - William Patrick Mother - Letitia Ann There should have been at least thirteen children. I am hoping you might have their names.

I am also looking for any information on Captain John Furness. He sailed a number of Schooners and Brigs up and down to ports on the east coast. He did dock in Knysna and Plettenberg Bay. I know that in 1865 he applied for the position of Harbour Master.

He did not get the position. If you can be of any assistance it would be greatly appreciated.

Regards, Mick Greenway

28 Oct 2010
KPS Cuthbert wrote:
Dear Mr Greenway,
The Cuthbert family were, indeed, on the Duart Castle and disembarked on 17 Nov 1880 in Cape Town. I have the archival copy of the Herald. William Patrick Snr was my Great Grandfather and his son, Thomas Albert, my Grandfather. I have more data, if you need.
Kingston Patrick S Cuthbert

Captain John Furness
10 Aug 2011
Neil Furness wrote:
I have some information regarding Captain John Furness who sailed his ship from England to South Africa circa 1850.

Neil Furness

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Alabama (1862-64)
1 Mar 2009
Tamar Garb wrote:
I am currently researching this Us Confederate ship (built in Liverpool) which docked in CT twice before being blown up in Cherbourg in 1864. I am particularly interested in tracing any photographic or other visual documentation of its sojourn in Table Bay. Any informtion on relevant archives in South Africa would be greatly appreciated.

22 Feb 2009
Mike Prada wrote:
Royal Interocean Line RIL (Old Dutch Java line) Passenger cargo (ist class all air conditioned by the 60's or maybe later). I travelled concesssionary 3rd class B - near the screws!

Sailed to HK from Kobe on her in Aug. 1960 She was going Naha -HK- Durban Santos (Brazil).Carried emigrating Japanese farmers (in the hold - steerage class? No livestock though!)Bit different from the 1st class which a swimming pool on deck.

Ran into a typhoon before Naha and ran for shelter in the Straits of Formosa - it was a rough 3 or whatever(?) days with several life-boat drills (that bad? Dunno I was into neat gin by then - everything else was broken!)

Buzzed by MIG's in the Straits in full view of their coastline (disputed Matsu Islands?) - much to the terror of Chnese on board and me too - I was an RAF Chinese linguist returning from leave in Japan to my Sigint unit in HK - didn't want to be a guest of the Peoples Republic - or the Taiwanese either - which we didn't recognise! Escorted to HK by 2 US destroyers and never wanted to travel on an 'Ocean Liner' ever again! Nice ship though - old style you never see now - no plastic there - all shiny mahogany and brass.Trip of a lifetime if you could stomach it!

Schooner "Foam", Brig "Hornet"
20 Feb 2009
Mick Greenway wrote:
I am lookin for information on Captain John Furness who sailed between Cape Town and possibly as far up the East coast as Port Elizabeth between the years of 1845 and 1860.

He sailed a number of smaller vessels certainly between Table Bay and Knysna.

He retired to Mossel Bay.

5 Feb 2009
Hi Richard

My Great Uncle Capt John Robison was master of the Richard_Carlowe when it was captured by the Graf Spey.

There are some websites that report the incident

Good luck


Andrew Robison

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MV Cape Clear/John Dearborn
5 Feb 2009
Mike Fleming wrote:
Hello Mr. Errigo,

I came across your request for research of January 2008 on the John H. Marsh Maritime Research site where you were looking for information on the MV Cape Clear (sank in collision with the John Dearborn in 1944).

I am currently researching this ship and was wondering if you have any information concerning the ship's sinking. The information that I have so far is the location of the ship's approximate position in the Gulf of Suez (Lat. 28° 21’ N Long. 33° 11.3’E.), depth at which the ship lies at (55-60 meters), a possible ship's photo, and location of build, owner, basci technical data, etc. Additionally, I have some information on the John Dearborn as well.

Mike Fleming

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French POW seamen detained in South Africa
5 Feb 2009
Ghislaine LHERMITTE wrote:
My father, French Merchant Navy purser André LHERMITTE, was detained in South Africa from Nov 1941 to Feb 1943, after his ship SS Cap Tourane was seized together with the 4 other ships of the convoy on its way back from Indochina.
He first spent 3 weeks in Port Elizabeth during the ship inventory, then was sent to Middleburg.

From my researches in the French Navy archives, I know there were a great many French seamen detained in South Africa. I have been able to trace descendants of 2 more naval officers from that convoy.

We would very much like to find out more about their lives during that period . Have any south African historians investigated that particular aspect of war-time history in your country? Would there be any persons who might hold documents pertaining to this period? Who could we contact on the matter?

We have an account published in the Middleburg Echo on an art exhibition organised by these French officers at the Grand Hotel in Middleburg. Does this newspaper still exist (maybe under a different name)?. If so, would you be kind enough to give me their e-mail.

Any help/suggestions would be greatly appreciated, Yours sincerely G. Lhermitte

Von Mollendorff
6 Feb 2009
Hester Laubscher wrote:
I have discovered the Coat of arms which have been lost for years.

I need to know how many sons and daughters he (Joseph Wilhelm von Mollendorff) had and who falls under which wife.  Also, if all their children married and who was their spouses and what are their childrens names (with Birth date, death date, place lived and died - if possible).  All your help in this regards will greatly be appreciated - if you can.

   1. I have researched my family (Von Mollendorff) for plus minus twelve years.

2. Need Full names and Surnames of the person or people I am looking for: Baron Joseph Wilhelm von Möllendorff

3. Dates and places of birth, death and marriages, if known:  I know he (Joseph) was born in Germany. Birth dates of children mentioned below. Marraige dates unsure of?

4. Details of spouse/s, that I know of: Married a Boer Girl who lived on a farm Kommaandokraal near Oudshoorn (had four children with her). Apparently he has remarried later (had two children with another wife).

5. Details of children, that I know of: Johannes Theodorus von Möllendorff (born 1841, lived at Buffels Drift in the District of Lady Smith), Gabriel Joshua von Möllendorff (born 1800 at Spitskop near Mossel Bay, J.P.J. von Möllendorff (born ?, lived at Paardedrift near Oudshoorn), Susan Amelia von Möllendorff (second dauthter of the Baron) AND the other two children's info is unknown.

6. Details of parents, that I know of: Field-Marshal Wichard Joachim Heinrich von Möllendorff came from a famous old family of Prussian nobility.  Junker of Junkers, he had grown up in the service of the Hohenzollerns, and rose to be one of the senior commanders in the army of Frederick the Great (Died, Havelberg, Berlin, 28 January 1816).  Wicard's Father & Mother is unknown?

7. Any other information that may assist: The Baron, Joseph Wilhelm von Mollendorff, was on board a passenger ship called the Maria 1788 (think a typo error in book should be 1888) near Plettenberg Bay (According to the Book named: South African Beachcomber by Laurence G. Green) OR THE Mabel Young and came to grief along the coast of Ballot's Bay in 1879 (According to the Book named: Looking back on George a medly of musings and memories by Chas O. Sayers).

Thank you,  

Hester Dorothea Laubscher (Maiden Surname: von Mollendorff)

29 Jul 2009
Steffan Van Molendorff wrote:
I am interested in following up on the family history. I am currently based in London.

My grandmother Engela (De Bruto) van Molendorff was married to Ockert Petrus Jacobus van Molendorff. She is almost 89 now and still lives in Pretoria.

My grandfather passed away several years ago but as a young child we have always listened to the stories of my great great... grandfather who managed to swim ashore and with the gold coins in his jacket managed to buy a farm in the Oudtshoorn district where my grandfather was born. The story about the lost treasury has also been discussed more than what I can remember and to this day my grandmother keeps the newspaper articles about the missing treasure.

Appreciate any more detail on the family history.

Kind Regards

Steffan Van Molendorff

8 Feb 2010
Dakkie wrote:
We would like to know more about' Von Mollendorff ' in your research piece of 'von Mollendorff and his treaure which was lost at Ballots bay.'

Our surname are von Mollendorff as well and we are trying to find out more about our ancestors. Our grandfather died without saying much about his family. All we know are that his parents live somewhere in the Freestate and that his been kicked out on a early age (14 or 15). He then came to the old South west Africa on ship.

His names were Josef Willem and the story say that it's a family name but from how far back we don't know. We will be grateful if you can help us somehow.

von Mollendorff

17 Jun 2010
Mia Watt wrote:
Hester My great grandmother was Joseph Wilhelm von Mollendorf grandchild or great grandchild. My mother's names are Susanna Amelia, which are the female "stam naam" of t he von Mollendorfs. What other information have you got re the von Mollendorf's? Kind Regards,
27 May 2011
Nina Viljoen wrote:
Dear Hester Laubsher

Can you please provide me with more information on the von Mollendorff fami ly. My maiden name is von Mollendorf (shortened with only one f by my great grandmother).

I would like to know especially about the occurrence of geniality or except ional philosophical ability by certain ancestors.

Kind Regards

Nina Viljoen

13 Nov 2012
Phillip & Lynette wrote:
Hester my maiden name is also Von Mollendorff. I have the family Bible of Josef von Mollendorff - must have been our great-great grandfather.

The names of all his children is in the Bible with dates of birth. His wife's maiden name was Loock.

Regards Lynette Calitz ( Von Mollendorff.)

3 May 2015
Bernece Van Molendorff wrote:
I am married to Johannes Stefanus van Molendorff, son of Engela de Bruto (married to Ockert Petrus Jacobus Van Molendorff). The Van Molendorff's are descendants of Wichard Joachim Heinrich van Molendorff, Prussian Field Marshall. Engela was my mother-in law.
Should you need any more info please contact me

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MV Ruys
24 Jan 2009
Michael Moss wrote:
I hope to publish a book based on my father's war diary. He sailed from Suez to Sicily in MV Ruys and I'd like to find a decent image of the ship. I found a couple of small images on the web, but they aren't quite what I'm looking for.

My father's notes tell an interesting story about a Javanese crewman who went mad and climbed up the mast with a large knife, remaining up there for most of the voyage. Also, Dad and his mates were enthralled by a tap that provided a seemingly endless supply of cold water - luxury indeed after so long in the Western desert!

Mike Moss

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18 Jan 2009
Patrick Schreiber wrote:
My father was on this ex Royal Navy Motor Launch ( IVANSTAN )which was wrecked at Tragedy Hill Ramsgate on the KZN south coast in June 1947. Could anyone please help with more information regarding this matter?
25 May 2010
Sheila Langley wrote

Hello Patrick,

  My father-in-law was the Captain/owner of the Ivanstan. 

Contact me via e-mail and I will give you as much information as I possibly can.  

Looking forward to hearing from you.  

Sheila Langley

25 Jan 2011
Pat Schreiber wrote:
Here is what I know (or think I know! ) about the IVANSTAN :-
She was a motor launch of the FAIRMILE class .
She was based in MALTA at some stage (Ref. DALHUNTY PAPERS)
She ran aground in the early hours of 22nd of June, 1947. There were apparently 3 whites and 22 blacks aboard. TRADGEDY HILL is supposedly named after this event.
Apparently another Fairmile( called the ZUTAN ??) also came to Southern Africa (East Africa). What I would still like to know:-
  • Was IVANSTAN her original name, or did she have an M.L. number (Pennant no.)
  • Her history up to the tragedy.
  • Are there any photos of her.
My investigation of the IVANSTAN is part of my tracing my family tree. I should have asked my Dad more about her, but regrettably I did not.
As a matter of interest, my 2 sisters were on the EMPRESS OF CANADA, which sailed from Durban, in convoy, in March 1943. The EMPRESS was torpedoed off the West African coast by the Italian sub. Leonardo da Vinci. Many lives were lost. My sisters both survived. I lost track of them, and we saw each other again in 2007 (after 65 years!!) They reside in the U.K. (My half-sisters- I am my father's only child).
I am retired and live in Port Alfred. About 18 months ago I visited Tragedy Hill and the small maritime museum in the area . On my next visit to KZN I intend to visit the main newspapers in Durban to see if they have any information in their archives.
Patrick Schreiber
2 Dec 2011
val & clive wrote:
Dear Sheila,

I have just come across your reply to Patrick Schreiber and I hope that you do not mind me contacting you. My uncle Geoffrey Wilkerson ( my mother`s brother) was on board on the voyage from England to Durban in 1947. I lived in Durban for 17 years and saw the Wheel of the “Ivanstan” in the bar of the Crayfish Inn in Margate.

If you can furnish me with any further information I would be most grateful.

Your`s faithfully

Clive Hummerstone

Kerguelen Sealing and Whaling Co.
16 Jan 2009
P Smith wrote:
Whilst writing my book on the Waratah, realised that there is mention of the whaling and sealing business as they helped them in their finding of shelters and they were not where they seemed on the charts! If you would like me to send the original piece of text then mention it on the page with an e-mail address adn I can send to J W Helfenbein. This was in 1910 so too early I know.

If anyone has knowledge of paintings of Waratah please let me know! Thank you.That is the Waratah which had maiden voyage 1908 and disappeared 1909.

15 Mar 2009
Beau Young wrote:
Good day to you .

Is it at all possible to get a passenger manifest for the Waratah on her maiden voyage from UK too Cape Town in 1909 ? I believe my father was on the trip out with his mother .

Regrds Beau Young

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Huis te Marquette and Cron Princess
15 Jan 2009
Karen Nelmapius wrote:
I am writing a book about a family friend, Mr Helgard (Pieter) Meyer (85), a descendent of Esaiah Meyer.

I have perused Franken and Rina Kaljee, also a Molley Hanley on the early Mossel Bay days, and in my story refer to two ships that went down/is associated with early Mossel Bay history, namely the Huis te Marquette and the Cron Princess.

I would like to know of any visual material of the Huis te Marquette or the Cron Prinssen, eg sketch from a book, picture, sketch of similar ship, that could be scanned or photographed and used in my book as a visual (with proper acknowledgement, off course.)

I also understand from uncle Helgard that a "Ming vase" was either sold or given to Esaias for his assistance with the Cron Princess, which now stands in the "Maritime Museum" in Mossel Bay.

Is this the same museum as the Diaz Museum?

Karen Nelmapius

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Brig Alacrity
10 Jan 2009
Fiona Hendrie wrote:
I came across a few references to Captain John Findlay and the Alacrity in historic Australian newspapers. I have found references in the shipping news along with adverts listing the ships cargo, also an advert for the sale of the Alacrity by public auction in 1834. There are also references to Captain George Findlay of the Harvey.

This is the wed address:-

I would be very interested to hear more about Captain John Findlay and to see some of the pictures mentioned in previous posts.


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4 Jan 2009
John Schofield wrote:
I was a cadet in the Boundary when she was sold to Singapore owners in 1966 and renamed Gold Adorer. She was built for Lauritzens, I believe, as the Lilla Dan in 1936. When operating out of Durban,she also was under the house flag of a british outfit, whose name escapes me at the moment but they also ran some ships with African names prefixed by Um. Umgeni, Umtali Umtata etc

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ms hohenfels
2 Jan 2009
peter carr-locke wrote:
This ship was scuttled in 1941 but refloated and subsequently sunk. My parents emigrated to England just after their marriage in January 1939 aboard this German vessel. I have a doll wearing a German naval uniform with the name of this ship around the hat. The doll was presented to my parents by the captain.

I did find pictures of this ship a few years ago on www but cannot locate them again. I am researching my family history and would welcome any information on this ship. My parents will be celebrating their 70th wedding anniverary this month, in addition to their subsequent voyage on the Hehenfels.

mv Tjinegara
24 Dec 2008
kja.bouma wrote:
Dear mr.Lindsey

Regarding your question on the mv Tjinegara(1) as follows:
ship name: mv TJINEGARA
owner : Java China Japan Lijn Amsterdam , The Netherlands
date of keel-laying : 21-12-1929
yard : N.V.Nederlandse Scheepsbouw Maatschappij , Amsterdam , The Netherlands . yard No.:205
tonnage : 9227 b,5783n , 8410d
meas.: lxbxd :139,70 x 18,90 x 11,74 metres draft :8,84 m
passagers: 44 I, 28 II , 90 III , 1816 tweendeck
propulsion : twin diesels type Sulzer twin propellors .
speed : 13,5 kn

Sister ship to mv TJISADANE

War story of the mv Tjinegara :
The vessel left Soerabaja ,Java, on the 12th of februari 1942 and sailed for Melbourne by way of the Soenda Straits. The Japanese had already taken the island of Bali . On board were cadets of the Dutch Naval air arm destined for training in the USA . From Melbourne the vessel sailed for New Orleans.25-061942.
The vessel was converted to animal transport and armed with guns and machineguns .She sailed for Noumea on the 1st of june 1942 .With 481 mules and various other war material . The guns were manned by a detachment of the US army .
From Noumea the vessel went to Brisbane .There it became known that control of the vessel was transfered from the BMWT to the USWSA .From Brisbane the vessel again sailed for Noumea . Crew 75 pers.,12 US gunners,33 US horsehandlers , 470 horses and heavy equipment .

On the 25th of July at about 23.00 hrs the vessel was hit by a torpedo from the Japanese sub I-169 . The vessel was evacuated in good order , No lives were lost . The next morning at about 01.00hrs the ship was hit by another torpedo and sank after about 30 minutes .Taking the horses with her . (pos.:23.18S-165.23W)

I found no reference to there being any military personnel being on board the vessel during her trip across the Pacific for refitting at New Orleans,except for dutch nationals.

I found only one reference for British subjects from NZ to the UK ,in this period . They sailed on the mv Tjitjalengka. The vessel went to Liverpool to be converted into a hospitalship .


There might be other references to this ship also on this page

18 Dec 2008
mike de Villiers wrote:
This ship is said to have belonged to the British New Zealand Shipping company and went aground in 1892 off Robben Island, South Africa.

I recently bought a porthole for my collection which is said to have come off this vessel.

Can anyone verify this or give me some information on this ship as I cannot find anything on the internet of her existence.

The person who retrieved this item is said to be WO Peter Keller of the SA Navy, now retired or maybe even dead.

MV Klipfontein
5 Dec 2008
Lorna Exsteen wrote:
Hi there

As a small child on board the Bloemfontein Castle in January 1953, half way between Lourenco Marques and Beira, I witnessed the sinking of the MV Klipfontein. It was a terrifying experience and my memories, although vague, was of people floating in life rafts and then coming a board the Bloemfontein Castle. The two Captains appeared to salute each other and the fog horn blarred as the Klipfontein went down. It is something I will never forget and I would be grateful if you could offer me any other information.

With kind regards

Lorna Exsteen

3 Dec 2008
Andrew Jeffery wrote:
Dear Sir/Madam,
I'm trying to find out more about a ship called the 'OFAMIA' that stopped in Cape Town or Simons town in 1881. It was suppose to be an Austrian Brig according to nationalization records of my great grandfather. He was a seaman aboard the ship & settled in Greenpoint with the Italian immigrant community around about 1881-1909 as far as I can tell.

andrew Jeffery

Uboats off South Africa
20 Nov 2008
kenneth brookes wrote:
Good day to all, my father passed away 4 months agao, his life was military and his interest included the german uboat myth, i am continuing his research and have spoken to many people about the myths of the german uboats, what the problem is that there are rumours and talks that a german uboat has been discovered off the cape town coast many in struisbaai, divers have tried to find the location but have come up with nothing, if anybody can help as i am looking for the Uboat number and any history into the South African involvment into germany using the cape town coast, and if any how many Uboat where in the areas.

Kindest regards kenneth

4 May 2010
Martin van der Merwe wrote:
Kenneth I was also asked by farmers to dive from their skiboat on a site to search for a uboat in Struisbaai around 1989. Those years these uboat rumours was still strong but with internet ( these days we all know it was just a story. I still dive this area and even today people enquire about Struisbaai's uboat.

I can give you more info about WW2 uboat activity along this part of the coast.


There might be other references to this ship also on this page

HMS Achilles model
18 Nov 2008
Bruce Preston wrote:
Hi, I wonder if you can help me? I was stopping in Seapoint,Cape Town about 15 years ago and, walking down to the coast, discovered a large model of a warship, HMS Achilles, in a glass case outside a block of flats. Stupidly I did not think to photograph it for my fathewr was in the Royal Marines and served on Achilles. Do you know if that model still exists and, if so, where it is?

Many thanks

Bruce Preston

18 Nov 2008
Kenneth Berry wrote:
Hi,I have just come across this incredible site and maybe my last hope for information. My Maternal Grandfather was Thomas Edward Lunt 3rd Engineer on the S.S.Sagamore bound from Boston Mass.U,S.A, to Liverpool UK.The 3rd March 1917 it was torpedoed by the U-49 150 miles west of Fasnet Rock.It sank in 30 minutes 3 lifeboats managed to get away.During the night there was a gale and seperated the 3 lifeboars.2 were never seen again.The one left had 17 survivors
on board.The 12th March a Blue Funnel Ship S.S.Deucalion spotted the lifeboat and rescued the remainihg 7.One of whom was my Grandfather.The Deucalion disembarked them at Capetown,South Africa,The first 5 of them had to have their feet amputated due to frost bite and gangrene,but not my Grandfather.He was sent back to the UK but over the next few years he had numerous operations and had to have both lower limbs amputated an inch or two below the knees. My Paternal grandfather was Capt on a Liverpool Tug boat and had almost a 1/4 to 1/2 of a page of a South African Capetown newspaper.It mentioned a great deal about Thomas Edward and his bravery and the other 6 survivors.It is a shot in the dark maybe but I have read such incredible stories I thought I would send an email.My Grandad who had the cuttig used to read it to me as a lad before and during WW2.I went to sea as an Engineer on 1953 and Pa died in 1955,while I was at sea and unfortinately nobody saw or saved the cutting,Of by chance you could help it would be most appreciated.I have been in NZ since 1956 marries to a New Zealand girl Now my 3 daughters and 9 grandchildren and 2 g/grandchildren want to know my roots as my wife is a 7th generation NZer.

Besr Regards Ken & Rita Berry

19 Jul 2010
Stefan Gerrard wrote:
I have just read an entry by Ken Berry regarding his great grandfather, who was a survivor from the SS Sagamore, sunk by a German U-boat, U-49, on 3rd March, 1917. The survivors, only 7, I believe, were then picked up by SS Deucalion on 12th March, 1917 and then taken to Cape Town. Here most of them had their legs amputated before recovering and being repatriated to the UK.

I am almost certain one of the survivors was my own great grandfather, John Thorkilson. I know this because: firstly, he had both legs amputated during the First World War; secondly, he was a seaman from Liverpool, home port of the SS Sagamore; thirdly, I have in my possession a letter from a certain 'Fairhaven Work Party', of Cape Town, in which reference is made to the dastardly act (ie the torpedoing of the Sagamore; the ship is mentioned by name) and to the money raised by local people to help in the rehabilitation of the sailors on their return to the UK.

Please could you:

  • Provide details of any information relating to this incident that you may have in your possession.
  • Tell me where 'Fairhaven' is in Cape Town / South Africa - I only come across a guest house when I google it.
  • Let me know of any online archives where I might pursue my enquiry into this episode. For example, is it possible to access archives from the 'Cape Times' newspaper?
Yours with thanks,

Stefan Gerrard

Oxford England

13 Oct 2010
Ken and Rita Inspire wrote:
Hi All Someone gave me information that you maybe able to help me about the 7 survivors off the S.S.Sagamore. The ship had been torpedoed 3rd of March 1917.3 lifeboats had been launched by the time she sank ,less than 30 minutes after the torpedo from the U-49 struck her Port side amidships.At the time she was Liverpool bound from Boston Mass. USA. and a 150 miles due west of Fastnet rock.

The 3 lifeboats tried to stay together over night but a big storm came up and in the morning there was only one lifeboat in sight.The other 2 were never seen again. The remaining lifeboat had 17 crew on board one who was my grandad 3rd Engineer, Thomas Edward Lunt. On the 12th,March 1917 the S.S.Deucalion spotted the lifeboat and rescued the only 7 remaining survivors. One of whom was my grandad. They had drifted quite a distance into the South Atlantic.

The Deucalion landed the 7 men at Capetown but do not know the date. 5 of the 7 survivors had to have their feet amputated immediately, due to gangrene and Frostbite.

My Mum who was only 5years old at the time seemed to think he arrived home with his feet but in a lot of pain.

Veterans Help in the UK the only information they had was that he had several operations on his lower limbs from April 1920 up to mid 1922. When they finally amputated his legs to just below his knees.

My other grandad had a newspaper article which was out of a South African newspaper. It mentioned that he had been the senior in charge of the lifeboat and had been quite an inspiration to his shipmates whilst in the lifeboat. also that you had a copy of the Deucalion Log of the rescue.

I hope you may be able to help me as I am getting to the stage of comin

Prior to me going to Scotland to continue my studies and Studentship with Babcock and Wilcox,at Renfrew.Boiler Engineers.I of course went to sea. Thank You for bearing with me and my request for information.Hoping you can help

Very Best regards and Thank you Again Ken Berry.

John Marsh must be Very Proud that you have continued on with his Vision.

Ken Berry

10 Apr 2012
Ken and Rita Inspire wrote:

Hi Ken Berry here

. Have just come across your your email in answer to mine 19th July 2010.

I have the records of the crew signing on and also pages from the Log Book of the S.S.Deucalion. When she rescued the 7 survivors out of the originally 17 survivors in the one lifeboat found after 3 were launched. I have been away out looking for information about their arrival in Cape Town. The Deucalion didn’t berth there till 06/04/1917, departing,again 4-00 pm 07/04/1917. She only called into Cape Town to put the Sagamore survivors ashore.

I have been in touch with a lady in Cape Town who is going to do some research over the new dates.The Deucalion was actually going to China and Japan, so the lifeboat must have been blown a heck of a distance over those 9 days. So I am hoping to see the newspaper cutting that I used to read as a lad, just prior to and a while into WW2, It took a fair while to get the stuff from TNA. Sent me a few emails and told me that the information was there. So if you would like copies of everything. you are more than welcome to them.

Hope to hear from you soon

Best Regards

Ken Berry

Image is S.S. Deucalion
Haven’t manage to find a photo of the S.S.British Transport. The ship that rammed and sank the U-49 in September 1917. But do have a photo of the S. S. British India her sister ship.

Shipping in Cape Town 1888
18 Nov 2008
Ruth Fox nee Manson-Kullin wrote:
I am trying to find out the name of a ship that would have entered Cape Town harbour in 1888, or thereabouts that would have had passengers from Sweden on it.

My great, grandfather was on board and I am trying to get hold of a picture of the vessel for my father.

His name was Frederick Reinhold Mansson-Kullin and is said to have immigrated to South Africa where he later became the Wharf Manager in Cape Town.

"Southern Maid" Durban 1950/52
15 Nov 2008

My name is Joe de Agostini age 68. I was interested to see on JMMC website documentation regarding "MV Southern Maid"

My late father also named Joe de Agostini was working for Jimmy McNamee and was skipper on the Southern Maid around 1951. Also my father started up the Sea Scout movement at Sea Park where we lived and on several occassions he would take the Sea Scouts to Dbn and we would go out to sea for a day trip over weekends. Somewhere I have a foto of the sea scouts on the Southern Maid saluting the raising of the flag with my father. The Southern Maid was always berthed at Maydon Wharf.

I can still visual Jimmy McNamee, and he had the furniture business in Dbn.

I can also remember my father going out to sea on fishing trips as well.

My father would also take the sea scouts to Salisbury Island to visit the navel base and sea planes. Also any navel ships that entered Dbn harbour we would visit and be piped aboard and shown around the ship etc. We also visited the whaling station at the Bluff and visited the whaling boats.

My late father started to built a 47ft steel motor/yacht type boat at Pinetown 1954 and he passed away Dec 1956, 3 months before the boat was completed. A Chinese family in Durban bought the boat in 1957 and I believe converted it into a fishing boat. Sometime towards the late 50's early 60's the Chinese were fishing off Margate down the south coast and the boat was in a collision with a ship in the night and the sank off Margate. Rumours were that they were having a party on board the fishing boat? and were rescued.

Would you be able to advise me on what website I could look into for record s/information of boats/ships that sank of the natal coast around the 50,s and 60's

Finally if you have a foto of the Southern Maid I would appreciate a copy.

Thank you for the interesting website

Regards Joe

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

14 Nov 2008
william morris wrote:
Wanting any photos of the tanker BRITISH UNION which I believe was sunk of the cape verde isles on 18th jan 1941.

My grandfather was lost when british union was attacked by the kormoran.

my own father now in his 70,s would love to know what his fathers vessel was like.

.bill morris

SSAtlantic City circa 1920
8 Nov 2008
Maureen Egeland wrote:
I am trying to find details of Reardon Smith Lines' SS Atlantic City for descendants of Edward Owens who sailed on her circa 1926.

We will be grateful for any information.
Maureen Egeland

302B MOY
6 Nov 2008
Nand Singh wrote:
Name of Ship: 302B Moy
Year Shipped: 1902
Depart From: Calcutta or Bombay

British ship brought indentured labourer from Uttar Pradesh (formally OUDH) to Guyana (formally British Guiana). I would like to know the village that my grandfather came from. The City is Lucknow. The province is Uttar Pragesh (formally OUDH)

My grandfather name is Basaon Phaku Singh.

PS: A list of ships leaving Calcutta and Bombay from 1850 to 1910 with passenger list and the villages thay cme from will be an excellent resource to trace family tree of Indians who were taken to the West Indies (Guyana and Trinidad) from India to perform Indentured Service.

Best Regards Nand

Polar Conservation Organisation and Ice Vista
5 Nov 2008
Francesca DiPietro wrote:
I am an intern at the Polar Conservation Organisation in Brussels, Belgium and we are looking to collaborate with other organizations with interests in the Polar Regions, the peoples, animals, flora and fauna of the region as well as sovereignty issues, etc.

Given that our most important activity is awareness and education, we are looking for information, photos or any other content (white papers, videos) on anything related to this region. In addition, we are looking for sponsorships, discussions, news feeds, etc. For more information please visit our website and contact us to see how we can cooperate. PCO is currently sponsored by Ice Vista and has a partnership with APA (Arctic Peoples Alert).

Again, any news or information would be appreciated.

Francesca DiPietro

2 Nov 2009
Craig Sheldon wrote:
I recently learned that my great grandfather, Charles Edward Sheldon jnr. (born 1877, England -- died 1932, Don Pedro Jetty, Port Elizabeth) was a Marine Engineer. I'm trying to determine the name(s) of the ship(s) on which he served.

His house was named "Kildalkey", and I've noted that a sealing ship by that name was operating during the correct time period, captained by a Hans Olaf Hansen for the Kergeulen Sealing & Whaling, and managed by Irvin & Johnson. Is it possible that Charles jnr. was an Engineer on-board this ship and chose to name his house after it?

If not, do you have records of anyone named Sheldon serving on-board a ship during the time period of 1890 - 1940?

Craig Sheldon

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

US Navy Fourth Fleet in South Atlantic
1 Nov 2008
ozires moraes wrote:
I am leading a group of researchers dedicated to gather all pertinent information regarding the history and participation of US Navy Fourth Fleet in South Atlantic during WW II.

This study have led us to take into account on the deeds and the importance of that large fleet based at Recife, Brazil.

All documents, books, magazines which cover the events are being translated into english, so that we can convert them into a full fledged account on Admiral Ingram's and his brave young and indefatigable american sailors in that mission in the south Atlantic waters.

The website is a link at the authoritative Hyperwar website.

Based on collected data, we could verify the huge proportion of that fleet which comprised more than 150 ships under command of Adm Ingram.

With hundreds of pages of text as well as pictures. We will tell a never told history of the war in the south Atlantic waters, US Navy bases, Air Squadrons in Brazil and much more.

This is a unique work a filled gap in Naval history.

I need pictures of a few german blockade runners. They are: Adolf Leonhardt, Adolf Woermann, Anneliese Essberger, Cassel, Erlangen, Karnak, Ussukuma, Watussi. Also need ship's pictures of Wakama, Rio Grande, Portland, Olinda, Norderney, Lech, Inn, Goslar, Ussukuma, Franken, Esso Hamburg, Ermland, Carl Fritzen, Burgenland and Babitonga.

With my warmest regards from Recife - Brazil. Capt Ozires Moraes

SS Silver Laurel
31 Oct 2008
Bill Duncan wrote:
My Grandfather John Duncan was Captain of the Silver Laurel when she was torpedoed on the 18th Dec 1944, Everyone on board got off alive (thank goodness) and my Grandfather reporting to the Navy that his ship was sunk by a U-boat was told that he was wrong and that it must have been a mine, to which my Grandfather replied "First time I've seen a mine traveling at speed in a straight line leaving a wake behind it!" But the Navy refused to accept his version of events. Of course records have since proved he was right and if they had taken notice of him then perhaps 3 other ships including theLeopoldville would have been spared.

Four-masted sailing vessel in Durban Harbour June 1942
29 Oct 2008
Stephen G. Margolis wrote:
I am doing research on my uncle's naval history. He was an electricians's mate on the US Navy transport ship Orizaba. He kept a diary from 1941 through 1945 and on Tuesday, June 9, 1942 he writes:

"Entered Durban, South Africa at 8:00 AM"

On June 13, 1942 he writes:

"An American 4-mast sailing ship here. Had a mutiny on her at sea, carried ammunition and took 103 days to come from the States.The crew's a hardy bunch, from the stories told, to put up with what they have to. They are headed for Australia."

Does your organization have any information about such a sailing ship, present in Durban harbour in June, 1942?

Any information would be appreciated.

Truly yours, Stephen G. Margolis

SS Pieter Faure
22 Oct 2008
Jeanne Oliver

I am in possession of a log book for the above vessel. The dates recorded are from Monday August 18th 1924 and the last entry is August 19th 1925. This log book records everything loaded on the vessel in Cape Town Harbour.

This is a record of dates, names, contents of things shipped to Robbin Island.

I would like to find out more about the vessel.

Thank you

HMS Otranto
October 2008
Phyllis Manning
I am trying to find any information or photos of the HMS Otranto. My great uncle was on board and lost his life. Have heard it was hit by a torpedo and also that it crashed into another ship during a storm. Just would like as much information I can get.

Thanks Phyllis

14 Jul 2011
Gary Everett wrote:
RE "SS Otranto",
"SS Otranto" 1912 Orient Line wrecked 1918 after colliding with P&O ship "SS Kashmir"

"SS Otranto" 1926 Orient Line last voyage via Cape Town 1957 then scrapped.

Kindest regards Gary Everett

SS Mexican
October 2008
Leon Van Der Westhuizen
I came upon your website while researching background on my maternal grandmother Annie Berriman who later married a Russell Ferns.

With her parents she travelled from Pennsylvania to Durban aboard the SS Mexican in 1909. Has anyone got a picture of the boat please? (I am a journalist and am in the throes of writing about certain events in Durban, South Africa during 1932 to 1945)

12 Jul 2009
Terry MCcann wrote:
Just some further info on the SS Mexican.

She was involved in a collision with the Winkfield near Dassen Island. Read up a bit more in Malcom Turner's "Shipwrecks & Salvage, a book that should be in an SA Library

Terry MCcann

There might be other references to this ship also on this page

The Wafra and Oriental Pioneer
Sept 2008
Leon Van Der Westhuizen
I am looking any photo's of the Wafra and Oriental Pioneer that ran aground L'Agulhas and Struisbaai in South Africa on 1 March 1971 and 22 July 1974. I have some photo's of the Meisho Maru 38 that ran aground L'Agulhas on 16 November 1982.
Sept 2008
Petrus Fourie
Underneath is information about a ship leaving England for South Africa. Can you help me to find the passenger list for this ship, or where can I write to, to obtain info about this ship's passenger list.

  • Bound for: Cape
  • Broker: Lidgett
  • Captain: Hopper
  • Surgeon: Francis
  • Departed: London 10 May 1849, Plymouth: 19 May 1849
  • Passengers:
  • Married: 30 males and females
  • Single: 47 males and 46 females
  • Boys, 1- 14 years: 34
  • Boys, under 1 year: 4
  • Girls, 1 to 14 years: 22
  • Girls, under 1 year: 2
  • English: 131
  • Scotch: 29
  • Irish: 55
  • Date of arrival: 3 Aug 1849
  • Death: James CARANAGH (under 1 year) of Bronchitis
  • Michael BUTTER (under 1 year) of Bronchitis
  • Elizabeth EAGLETON (1 year old) of Dentition & Convulsions
  • Benjamin FLETCHER (2 years old) of Bronchitis
  • Martin KELLY (1 year old) of Convulsions from teething
  • Births: 2
  • Regards

    Petrus Fourie

    24 Oct 2009
    Geoff wrote:
    I am also trying to get a passenger list of the trip departure London 10 May 1849 as we have family on board being Butlers of Wiltshire, England.

    I believe this trip took two and a half months, incendently one of the births were of Butlers descent, (Selina Butler) born on Royal Alice- died in Port Elizabeth, not sure of year.

    On board were the Butler and Moore families they evntually went to Knysna. Other passengers were Canon Fisk, Dr Francis and Magistrate Fichat.

    The gentleman that i am interested in is Thomas Butler born 30th July 1820 died in George, Western Cape, not sure of the year. Also spent time in Belvidere

    There might be other references to this ship also on this page

    28 Jul 2011
    Lawrence, Elizabeth Jane E wrote:
    I too am looking for a Passenger Shipping List of the "Royal Alice" which left England in May 1849 and arrived in Cape Town on 3 August 1849. I understand that it was an immigrant ship.

    Thank you, Elizabeth.

    28 Jul 2011
    Lawrence, Elizabeth Jane E wrote:
    Hi Geoff I think the family you are researching may have travelled to George with those that I am researching. Two comments from his journal state.

    9th August "There were 119 emigrants went aboard a steam ship headed for Mossel Bay"

    16th August ......... "There were three families stopped there (Mossel Bay) viz. Hunter, Egelton and Stockdale, also three single men. Sutton and Burt bound themselves to a carpenter and J Clear went on the police. We started from the bay at five o'clock. (Headed for George by ox wagon) We soon came to the Great Brak river ........................... we all went in a boat to cross the river. One of the name of Archibald Kay rowed us across. He is a stonemason and is a native of Stirling or some way thereabouts. He gained good character as a mason in the district as he carried (?) on a bridge at Montague's Pass which is much thought of .. ........... We landed in George about four o'clock and had to go live in the 'Tronk' as they could not get a house for us. However we were very comfortable and had Jail allowance viz. one and a quarter pound of mutton, one pound of bread and a small allowance of rice.

    Thank you, Elizabeth

    1 Jun 2014
    Maggie wrote:
    Hi Elizabeth
    I am doing a worldwide family tree on the Lawrence's. Did you manage to get a passanger list on the "Royal Alice"
    Best Wishes

    M.V. Ebani
    Sept 2008
    Brian Schantz
    I have purchased a Captain's cabinet / bar from this vessel and wanted to know more about it.

    Thank you

    29 Jan 2009
    Bob Moggach wrote:
    Hello Brian

    I am in possession of a Chelsea ship's clock which has the plate on it identifying as having come from the Officer's Saloon - M. V. "Ebani" - Liverpool - I was wondering if you had any other information about the ship's origin, what happened to it etc.

    The clock was a gift to me from a close business acquaintance who has since passed away. He was in Winnipeg Manitoba Canada and said he had used the clock on a passenger boat he captained on the Red River.

    Any information would be appreciated or direction as to where I can find more.

    Robert Moggach

    The European
    Sept 2008
    Peter Le Sueur
    I recently purchased a colour postcard depicting a ship arriving at the East London harbour. The inscription is; 'The European, the largest ship to enter the harbour'. The postcard dates from 1900-1910.

    Do you have any information on the ship and when this ocurrence took place at East London?

    Eduard Bohlen near Conception Bay
    Sept 2008
    Dekker Smit
    I want to know who was the commander of the Eduard Bohlen at the time of running aground at Conception Bay at the Namibian coast and what happend to the skipper after the accident.


    22 Aug 2014
    Jan Serfontein wrote:
    Hi Dekker,
    According to unconfirmed info the captain was a "Capt. Parow" who, after the incident, retired in Cape Town, bought a piece of land, from there the suburb "Parow"

    Might be worth more research.



    Sept 2008
    Chris Nutter
    I need to know if this is the same ship involved in the Amelia Earhart flight from Lae New Guinea to Howland Island in 1937.

    Myrtlebank was reported to have sailed from Aukland NZ to Nauru Island and in the vicinity of Nauru Island on July 2, 1937.

    If this is this same ship, I am interested in an image and any information about this vessel.

    Your listing shows # 587 for Myrtlebank.

    Thank you.

    Deep Sea Diver - Durban Harbour 1800s
    Sept 2008
    Carole Caetano
    BENSON born in Ireland and deceased in Durban whilst working in Durban Harbour of the Bends, sometime after 1891.

    I am trying to find out more about my maternal great grandfather Benson - who was apparently the first diver who worked in Durban Harbour. He died of the bends. Was married and had children - my grandmother Gladys Amelia Benson born 09.09.1891. (Sisters Effie and Flossie - some brothers too). They lived in Point Road in those days. His first name is not available to me. Are there any records I could research? The obvious is my Gran's birth cert, but I am not able to get that very easily from Ireland.

    Many thanks.

    1 Dec 2009
    Vanessa Maitland wrote:
    I have a book called African Keyport by Capt Tony Pearson - he mentions the first divers to work in Durban Harbour was on the wharves...

    "The first diving gang moving well ahead and preparing the foundations, the next setting the blocks up to low water level."

    This was around 1893. Colin Bender in his book Who saved Natal mentions that earlier than this divers were employed in Durban for salvage, repairs and surveys. He laments the fact that little is recorded about them and their service to the Harbour, yet does little to rectify the situation. If I find out anything else will let you know

    Vanessa Maitland

    13 May 2010
    Denise Renton wrote:
    Hi Carole,

    I have just been researching my grandfather William Henry Benson, born around 1890 in Howick KZN - sister Effie. According to 1st world war medical reports his 1st wife was L.Benson and the kids were Henry Lewis, Coral (?) & William Claude.

    He divorced at the age of 40 and married my grandmother, Ivy Pattison, who was then 19/20 yrs old. My Mom, Patricia Helen Benson, was born in 1930 and her father died of a heart attack 1931.04.18 aged 42yrs.

    When he went to war he was staying at 32 Wills Rd Durban. I believe his father or mother were from Ireland, but we have been unable to trace birth certificates as the registry in Ireland burnt down.

    My Mom is now 80 and my Gran never spoke to her about her father. When she was small she used to walk to her Aunt Effie who she recalls was the only person who was nice to her. She was sent to boarding school in Eshowe when she was 6 and my Gran married again.

    Let me know if it's the same info you have. I have the Death Certificates of William & Ivy.

    Kind Regards

    Denise Renton

    Robert Edward Noble
    August 2008
    Greer Noble
    I'm trying to trace my grandfather who was with the Merchant Navy (I think he was the 1st Mate) which docked in Port Elizabeth in the late 1800's, before 1884 I think. I would dearly love to buy a picture of the ship. Can you help me locate this ship?

    PS What might be a clue, he went on to Captain a tug in the PE harbour called 'Garth'. He was well known as "Skipper Noble" of Port Elizabeth.

    Oct 2008
    My research is to do with my grandfather, Robert Edward Noble b.1860, who joined the Merchant Navy. We believe he was born in Scotland (possibly Aberdeenshire). We've only managed to trace him FROM Port Elizabeth, South Africa where, according to the Marriage Register, he married in 1883. From this, one is able to ascertain that he was in the Merchant Navy for a period of some 8 years, between 1875 and 1883. He was a "1st Mate". Would it have been possible for him to have risen to "1st Mate" during that period?

    He had a brother, James Noble, who joined the Royal Navy. This is all we know.

    Now that we have his full names and birth date, please advise if there's any way we can verify this?

    Best wishes,

    Greer Ballantine (nee Noble)

    Thank you.

    the gladiator III
    August 2008
    Lesley Pullen
    Hi there
    Situated on the east cape coast between cannon rocks and perdevlei

    I live on a farm along the coast between cannon rocks and alexndria, eastern cape. it overlooks bird island. the farm was called grootvlei.

    I have a grave yard on the farm one in particular i would like to find out more about.

    William Pagan lost his wife elizabeth 27yrs and two children , william 4yrs and helen 1 yr , when the gladiator (iii) sunk off the coast in november (1860) this date can vary as it is very unclear.

    the ship was homeward bound from bombay to england.

    I have spent many hours searching for information. please help

    I would like to restore the graveyard, and would very much like to have some accurate facts at hand.

    Lesley Pullen

    28 Aug 2010
    Brian wrote:
    Hello Lesley,
    Well I think I can perhaps add some flesh to the PAGAN graveyard you mentioned in an August 2008 posting:

    I live in New Zealand and connect to a PAGAN family whose lineage traces back to Oakridge (Aikrigg) Farm, Moffat Parish, Dumfriesshire, Scotland.

    The surname, being relatively uncommon one here enabled easier research than other surnames, and all PAGANs in NZ to the late 1900s have been traced to this farm. The earliest PAGANs arrived in NZ quite seperately late 1850s and early 1860s, at which time a large number of Scots took advantage of an immigration opportunity regarding land that was being newly opened up for settlement in the Otago and Southland provinces at the very bottom of the South Island of NZ..

    During my research, the presence of a William Pagan in Wellington (North Island) and another Pagan parenting couple in Dunedin (Otago Province) had been placed aside and on the basis that both were not farmers - as all others were - their research was left to the end.

    It turned out that the parenting couple in Dunedin and the William Pagan in Wellington were the same family, having first settled in Dunedin between Aug 1862 & May 1863. This William apparently had employment with the NZ Post Office and about 1866/67 he was relocated to Wellington and placed in charge of the Savings Bank as Controller there. His life was cut short 8 Mar 1872 and he was buried at Plot 26K, Bolton Street Cemetery in Wellington, NZ.

    He had married a Mary Patrick 3 Jun 1862 In Glasgow, Lanarkshire, Scotland, and must have soon thereafter immigrated to NZ, because their first child was born in Dunedin May 1863. They had the following six daughters:

    Annie Clyde PAGAN, b 1 May 1863, Dunedin, NZ
    Mary Isabel Fleming PAGAN, b ca 1864, Dunedin, NZ
    Helen Orient PAGAN, b 23 Nov 1865, Dunedin, NZ
    Maggie Elisabeth PAGAN, b 1867, Wellington, NZ
    Cora Lynn PAGAN, ca 1869, Wellington, NZ
    Maude Mina Lyle PAGAN, ca 1871, Wellington, NZ

    After William died, Mary returned with her six daughters to Scotland, where all lived out the rest of their lives. They appeared to have been highly educated, at least three were teachers, one had dabbled in electric light design and another had dabbled in poetry. Only two of them married. Their mother with a memorial inscription to their father is buried next/with two of their daughters in Tarbet Cemetery, Kintyre Parish, Arguyllshire, Scotland.

    When William PAGAN married in 1862, it was stated that he had been previously married. And it had only been speculated upon just who that was. By a process of elimination a marriage to an Isabella Culbert had attracted attention, but it appears that she must have died prior to 1855 when GROS Statutary recording of deaths became mandatory and so nothing further was able to be developed. This possibility was left as an isolated research note.

    However, it became noticed that there was a child, a Helen Orient PAGAN born in 2 Aug 1859, Bombay, Mahashtra, India to a William PAGAN and Elizabeth Unknown. The coicidence of this identical unusual name in the above New Zealand family then attracted a closer examination of William's possible prior family.

    So what was new to research was the likelihood that he had spent some time in India, and that his previous spouse's name was probably Elizabeth

    One other birth in Bombay was also found, recorded as William Wilson PAGAN, born there 19 Apr 1856 to a William PAGAN and Helen Unknown - yes, the IGI gives Helen here, but the coincidence of these two births there suggests that one, either Elizabeth or Helen, is likely to be suspect.. (No known other PAGAN births there)

    Then I found your query.

    Your report that the graveyard reords an Elizabeth Pagan wife of a William Pagan with two children William and Helen were lost when the Gladiator sunk ca 1860 has too many coicidences present amongst the facts to claim that the William PAGAN who showed up in NZ is not the one referenced on the farm graveyard you mentioned.

    (Which makes the record of William Wilson PAGAN's birth to a mother Helen the record having an almost certain incorrect identification of the mother.)

    Just what surname Elizabeth carried is unknown, and I have been unsuccessful in finding any candidate marriages that would offer some clue - William's early years though are quite elusive - Unlike his parents and siblings he has not been found in either the 1841, 1851, or 1861 censuses of Scotland, and aside from the record of his birth 9 Nov 1820 in Moffat Parish, the next Scottish record is his marriage in 1862, in which record he is stated to be a widower and confirms that his parents were Thomas PAGAN & Ann Johnston, one of the branches out of Oakridage Farm in Moffat Parish.

    I' d be happy to send you more detailed family information, but will send this off to see if your address is still working.

    Perhaps you could send a photo of the gravesite and you probably know more about the events that surround the loss of the Gladiator?

    Looking forward to your response


    Brian Mair
    Hamilton, New Zealand

    SS American Builder
    July 2008
    Edgar Hessek
    I have a copy of the official log of my Merchant Marine ship that was in Capetown in September 1943. The name of my ship was the SS American Builder. A US lines ship. I was aboard as a Navy Armed Guard personnel.
    Edgar Hessek

    Frederick Julius Snijman
    July 2008
    Liz Bester
    My great-great grandfather (Frederick Julius Snijman (now known as or spelt Snyman) was born in Denmark (we presume Copenhagen) 21 August 1819 - He became a naval officer who survived a shipwreck off the coast of or near Hermanus in 1844. Went on to marry one Gertruida Elizabeth (nee Bredenkamp) and together had 7 children.

    I really don't know if he sailed aboard a wooden ship and from where he sailed. A Capt. Dolly crosses my path in a lot of read-ups but how do I identify a ship/boat/barge or whatever sailing vessel without a list of survivors?

    Any help of whatsover nature, even in the negative will be better than none.

    Thank you most sincerely


    3 Apr 2009
    Susan Grib wrote:

    Now I am very confused, because my husband's grandgrandfather with the same names Frederick Julius BUT with the surname GRIB also arrive from Denmark, the same time under the same circumstances and also married GEERTRUYDA ELIZABETH BREDENKAMP from the farm Caledon in the Caledon district with 7 children.
    Even the dates are the same, just the surname is not.

    This is too near to be a misunderstanding. SUSAN AND FERDIE GRIB

    1 Dec 2009
    Vanessa Maitland wrote:
    Found the following wreck in the area in 1844 -

    John and James - barque commanded by Capt. J. Elliot. Wrecked on Danger Point at 22h00 on 1-9-1844, while on a voyage from Calcutta and Mauritius to London via St. Helena. The crew took to the boats and no lives were lost.

    Vanessa Maitland

    24 Nov 2013
    Poul Grib wrote:
    Concerning Frederik Julius Grib:
    the birth of Frederik is 21.12.1820 in Copenhagen
    baptisted: 11.2.1821 in Holmens Kirke, Copenhagen.
    If wanted I can scan the book.
    Poul Grib

    SS Kirkpool
    July 2008
    Lorraine Walker
    I have a two page diary of the day to day accounts on board this ship its cargo places it disenbarked passengers. It tells of the captains wife passing on and his 124 days on board this vessel but I cannot find anything on this ship anything would be grateful.

    The year is 1883.

    Lorraine Walker

    SS Kirkpool
    July 2008
    Heather Greenway
    My father-in-law, Glyn Phillips, was aboard the ss Kirkpool when it was sunk on 10 April 1942 and has asked us to help him to put together details on his merchant navy days including the time he spent as a prisoner of war in Japan.

    I have started researching via the internet what I can on the various vessels he sailed on but require further information and also photographs of the vessels.

    The vessels that I require information on are:

  • ss Amicus (September 1932 - September 1933)
  • ss Beatus (September 1933 – July 1936)
  • ss Lornaston (October 1936 – June 1939)
  • ss Alma Dawson (August 1939 – November 1939)
  • ss Kirkpool (December 1939 – April 1942)
  • The dates in brackets above on the dates that Glyn Phillips was aboard the various vessels.

    The information that I have obtained on the vessels and which I would like to know if correct is as follows:

    ss Amicus
    Amicus was a 3,600 tons British cargo steamship built by Northumerland Shipbuilding Co. for W.H. Seager & Co. in 1925. On a voyage from Tampa for Ipswich carrying a cargo of 5600 tons phosphates was torpedoed and sunk on 19 December 1940 by the enemy Italian submarine Alpino Bagnolini about 240 miles W of Blacksod Bay, Co. Mayo (54°10N, 15°50W). The entire crew of the steamer was lost.

    ss Beatus
    Beatus was a 4,885 ton British cargo steamship built by Tempus Shipping Co. for Ropner Shipbuilding & Repairing Co. Ltd, Stockton-on-Tees in 1925. She served with W.H. Seager & Co. Ltd, Cardiff. On a voyage from Three Rivers, Sydney to Tyne, Middlesbrough carrying a cargo of 1,626 tons of steel, 5,874 tons of lumber and a deck cargo of crated aircraft was torpedoed and sunk on 18 October 1940 by enemy German U-boat (U46) about 100 miles west by south of Barra Head (57°31N, 13°10W). All 36 crew members survived to be picked up by the convoy escort HMS Bluebell, and were subsequently landed at Gourock.

    ss Lornaston
    Lornaston was a 4,934 ton British cargo steamship built by Robert Duncan & Co. Ltd, Port Glasgow in 1925 for Galbraith, Pembroke & Co Ltd, London. On a voyage from Blyth and Downs for Casablanca carrying a cargo of 6,002 tons of coal she was torpedoed and sunk on 8 March 1945 by German U-boat (U-275) northwest of Fécamp (50°35N, 00°30W). All 40 crew members and seven gunners were picked up by HMS Holmes and HMS Palencia and landed at Newhaven.

    ss Alma Dawson
    Alma Dawson was a 3,985 ton British cargo steamship built by the Jubilee Steam Navigation Co. in 1917 for Tyne I.S. Co. While on a voyage from Montreal to Ipswich she struck a defensive minefield and sank on 24 November 1940 west of Islay (55°32N, 06°44W). The entire crew was rescued.

    ss Kirkpool
    Kirkpool was a 4,842 ton British cargo steamer built in 1928 by Sir James Laing & Sons Ltd, Sunderland in 1928 for Poole Shipping Co. Ltd Nielsen & Sons, West Hartlepool. On a voyage from Durban for Montevideo carrying a cargo of coal she was intercepted, torpedoed and sunk by the German Raider, Thor on 10 April 1942 some distance N.N.E of Tristan da Cuna (33º 00”S 07º 00”W ). Three officers and 16 men were killed. The survivors were transferred to the German supply ship Regenburg and then onto the German ship Dresden and taken as prisoners to Japan.


    June 2008
    Pat Giri
    I am trying to find out the history of my great grandfather, whose surname was Giri. I am lead to believe he was involved with bringing the first tug boats out from Italy to Port Elizabeth or East London. Is there any record of this 'Italian connection'?
    Regards Pat Giri

    Rio Pardo
    June 2008
    Francis Buckley
    I am looking for information on the Rio Pardo, in particular for the period 1918 - 1920 prior to its re-naming as the City of Alexandria.
    Many Thanks

    Sinking of packet 1815 - 1839
    June 2008
    Lynne Thompson
    Researchers at the George Museum have been trying for years to establish what ship went down between Mossel Bay and Wilderness that has resulted the the legend of von Mollendorffand his treasure which was lost at Ballots Bay (Christina Bay in earlier days).
    An article in the 1904 local newspaper quotes Mrs Sayers, "a packet ex India went down about 60 years ago" when his ship sank off the local coast.
    Research into the genealogy of von Mollendorff with his marriage dates and the birth dates of children, gives a few gap years. There are also marriages between his children and the Abrie family and a reference to Abrie, a veteran of Waterloo, also being shipwrecked between Mossel Bay and Wilderness.
    One theory is that von Mollendorff was on the "Maria" which grounded at Robberg, Plettenberg Bay in 1788 in a south east gale. The story goes that he abandoned the ship and took to a raft and drifted to Ballots Bay. Unless he had a sail, he may have had the current against him.
    The details are scant and possiblities confusing and once again there is another "treasure hunt" for the missing iron chest at Ballot's Bay, in progress.
    Other missing details in the local history are the origins of the original name of Ballots Bay, which was Christina Bay and Victoria Bay, which was called Gunter's Bay - a mere kilometre eastwards.
    We would be most grateful for any further information.
    Lynne Thompson

    June 2008
    Lynne Thompson
    I am a volunteer at the George Museum and we are currently researching the history of the the old Drostdy building which now houses the museum.
    The building was used as a hotel for about 80 years, the last being the Victoria Hotel which closed in 1972 and was bought to house the museum. A few hotel artefacts were donated to the museum, including three stewards/waiters jackets, one of which we will use in the exhibit of the history.
    We found that each jacket had been given an enigmatic name - "Vanguard", "Challenger" and "Lybro".
    A search on the internet confirmed that the first two were Royal Navy ships. The question is: what connections could there be with George and the hotel?
    The "Vanguard" brought the Royal Family to SA in 1947 and they paid a visit to George with a procession up to the Victoria Hotel from the railway station.
    The "Challenger" had visited SA in 1946 or 1947 - but not known if she stopped at Mossel Bay with a visit to George by the crew. There is a tenuous connection.
    As yet, I have been unable to find a ship named Lybro, although did find references to the name used on a ship as a "Lybro" boy. Also a shipping company in Cape Town bears/bore the name. There was another reference that the "Lybro" could have been a whaler.
    I stumbled on your website with the E-mail address and write with the hope that you may be able to shed some light, firstly on the "Lybro" and secondly, any possible reason why waiter's jackets in a George hotel in 1972, should bear the name of at least two ships.
    We have been unable to find any information connecting the owners or managers with maritime matters.
    Would appreciate any information you may be able to find.
    Lynne Thompson

    ss Matsonia
    June 2008
    Alex Andrews
    The Matsonia I am interested in was built in c1926 for Matson Lines' (of San Francisco) West Coast (of USA) to Hawaii service. It was operated in WWII as a high speed troop transport along with its slightly more modern running mates; Lurline, Mariposa and Monterey (these latter three were put into service in the Pacific in 1932 and 1933). The Lurline also operated the Hawaiian services and the Mariposa and Monterey operated to the South Pacific. At any rate, I am interested in the routes and schedules (ports and dates) followed during WWII, especially in an out of New Zealand. The Matsonia operated primarily in the Pacific Theater but may have occasionally gone elsewhere as well. I would particularly like to obtain photos of the vessel during her wartime service. I sailed as a young boy on the Matsonia from New Zealand to California in ,I believe, late 1942. I also believe the ship sailed from Auckland (as the final port in New Zealand), but it might have been Wellington.

    So, to summarize, I am interested in port dates, routes and PHOTOS. Thanks. Alex

    Minston Brea
    June 2008
    Ron Sladden
    I was looking for information on a American Small Ship,the Minston Brea I believe it was a sea going tug, My father was a crew member . It was in service on the East Coast of Australia during w.w.2. I believe it was used to move the stern of the liberty ship Ruffus King after it broke in two on the south passage barr in Morton Bay Queensland. The stern was towed to New Guinnie. Anything you can give would be greatly appriciated.
    Cymric Pride
    May 2008
    Rhian Owen
    I have found a picture of "Cymric Pride amongst my late father's photos.There is a poem written on the back of the photo suggesting that men from around were my father lived (West Wales) perished on the ship. Do you know where I could find more information about the ship. Many thanks
    May 2008
    Lawrence Mirsky
    I was wondering if you had any additional information concerning the vessel described below, which met its fate when it fell off a marine railway in Cape Town on November 25, 1864? Although I do not see her listed in your photographic collection, I'd be interested in any likenesses of the vessel you might have, if any. The vessel appears to have been a regular visitor to Cape Town. "Urania bark (barque), Built in 1856 by Nehemiah Hand at Setauket (Brookhaven Township, Long Island, New York) for Captain William R. Turner. According to Nehemiah Hand she cost $31,000 to build and he owned a three eighths share of the vessel. The Urania was designed for the coffee trade between New York and Brazil. She was described by the Shipping & Commercial List as a “½ clipper”, however, American Lloyd’s still classified her as “Full” modeled.

    Two years after her launch, with the opening of Japanese ports, she was running as a packet between Shanghai, China and Nagasaki, Japan. According to her builder, when she returned home she brought with her a cargo of silks, teas, and freights worth roughly $12,000.

    By the time of the Civil War, the Urania was running regularly between New York and the British colonial possession of Cape Town, South Africa. The Urania arrived at Cape Town in early August of 1863, one day ahead of the Confederate raider C.S.S. Alabama. The citizens of Cape Town, and the crew of the British warship H.M.S. Valorous, greeted the Alabama and the bark Sea Bride, which the Confederate ship had captured off the South African coast just days earlier on August 5th, with a great deal of enthusiasm. This did not sit well with crews of the seven Union merchant vessels at the port at that time. All of them, except for the Urania, lowered their flags in the hope that they would not be recognized as United States vessels, as it was feared that the Alabama would remain lurking off the port waiting for them to depart. Unlike the others, Captain Cooper of Urania decided to keep his up, apparently in a show of defiance, while his vessel was tied up not more than a ship’s length away fro

    In the end, an encounter with a warship would lead to the Urania’s demise. On October 11, 1864 the Urania collided with the British Navy paddle frigate H.M.S. Valorous off the coast of South Africa. The Urania got the worst of this run in because of the British warship’s large size and extra heavy construction. The Urania was knocked on her beam ends by the force of the collision but still managed to take her crew safely into Cape Town, despite having lost several streaks of planking on her hull. Upon arriving she was immediately unloaded so that her damage could be surveyed. Urania had her fore channel bitts broken, main rail on the starboard side completely destroyed, covering board smashed, stanchions broken, and a boat destroyed. More seriously she had several streaks of planking started or missing altogether, and all of her copper sheathing forward the forecastle stripped from her hull. She would require extensive repairs before she could leave Cape Town.

    While the Urania was still at Cape Town on November 25, 1864 in the process of completing the extensive repairs she required, a strong gale blew into town. In a freak accident the cradle on the marine railway holding the Urania fell over. The ship fell into the sea and was washed ashore a total wreck."

    I would greatly appreciate any additional information you might be able to provide concerning the Urania's loss and what happened to her remains, etc.


    Lawrence Mirsky

    Kerguelen Sealing & Whaling Co. Ltd.
    Apr 2008
    H.W. Helfenbein
    I am a philatelist and interested in the history of the Kerguelen Islands and at present searching for informations on the vessels of the Kerguelen Sealing & Whaling Co. Ltd.(Irvin & Jonson).
    I already found some info in the Internet and in some books but still need more information.
    Can you perhaps help me with the dates of departure and arrival of these ships in Cape Town (and Durban) during the years 1920-1932 ?
    I am also interested in photos and postal material, such as postcards and covers with postmarks.
    Hope you can help me anyway,
    Best regards from Germany
    H.W. Helfenbein

    Apr 2008
    Kathy Wayland
    I reside in Storms River in the Eastern Cape and have been approached by one of the ex-residents, aged 80 years and now resident in the USA - whose grandfather’s ship was apparently shipwrecked at the spot where the Tsitsikama National Park is today. I was wondering if you would be able to assist me with some information on this ship.

    I enclose some details from his emails to me, which could probably assist you:

    "The true story is that my 40 year old (at that time in 1898) Grandfather Laurits Larsen, who was Captaining a large 1400 ton 300 foot long 3 masted Brig or Barque (VENUS) all the way from Copenhagen in Denmark; was blown ashore at Storms River Mouth.

    Only he and his engineer survived the stormy waves that crashed on to the rocks at the Storms River Mouth.

    His crew of a dozen men all drowned. My Grandfather and his engineer walked up the steep slopes through the Forest and came across the Sawmill further up the hills. He was lucky to find some form of civilisation right there at that time." I would appreciate any information anyone may have on this vessel.

    Kathy Wayland

    29 Sep 2010
    Rene' Facrie wrote:
    I am looking for info in connection with Laurtis Larsen. I believe he might be my great great grandfather.

    My aunt and I are building a family tree and were informed that the Larsen family originated from Norway/Denmark.

    She was in Durban at the bluff and was informed her great grandfather came over on a ship (did not know what happened to the ship) and that he was a whaler. I believe that this is my family and would like to confirm if possible.

    Regards, Rene Facrie

    The Duke of Portland
    Apr 2008
    I am doing a research on The Duke of Portland, under Captain Lovat Mellon which saild from the Cape around May of 1802.
    I will appreciate your assistance on the make of the ship (apart from tha information that it was a 400 tons burthe). I am aware that two women boarded at the Cape. You may have some information on them as well, one Elizabeth Morey and her maid, Eliza.
    Your support will assist in my reasearch greatly.
    10 Jan 2012
    Tony Roberts wrote:
    I found a reference on your web-site to the 'Duke of Portand' dated April 2008 from I S Lala.

    It mentions Elizabeth Morey in connection with this vessel.

    There is a Project Gutenberg book called 'The Adventure of Elizabeth Morey, of New York' by Louis Becke which gives the full story of the ship The Duke of Portland. Interesting reading.

    Tony Roberts

    Roderick Kenneth MacKenzie
    Apr 2008
    Almira Yvonne Oldehaver
    My Name is Almira Yvonne Oldehaver nee Mackenzie. I am a direst descendant of Roderick Kenneth MacKenzie or McKenzie. I believe he was a sea captain on a ship [ not known ] or maybe he was a crew-man on a ship that was doing runs from Scotland through to Portland Victoria [ Australia ] in the 1800's. The thing is, I don't have any dates or a name of the ship. If someone can help me., it would be very much appeciated.
    Johan Caeser
    Apr 2008
    Glynne Clegg
    I am also desperately trying to find any info and a foto of the Johan Caeser which left Damitzow, Uckermark in 1958 and arrived in East London in 1959 with my great grandfather Gottfried Fetting and his wifte Justine and daughter Emilie.

    Any info would be greatly appreciated

    Thank you
    Glynne Clegg (nee fetting)

    Apr 2008
    Beverley Nelson
    The wreck I am interested in is at the Macuto lighthouse near Beira, Mocambique.
    Another wreck, reputedly the "Macuti", was beached there sometime before 1994.
    I am interested to find out about this "Macuti", because it just seems too much of a coincidence that a ship with EXACTLY the same name as the beach and lighthouse (a name given to the area many years ago) would have been wrecked there.
    I wonder if the name MACUTI was added to the newer wreck AFTER it was beached??
    Do you know how I could find out the date when it was beached to replace the old one?

    Yours sincerely
    Beverley Nelson in New Zealand.

    Cranes at Cape Town dock
    Apr 2008
    John Jessop
    I was born in Cape Town and in 1951 saw cranes at the docks made by Jessop. My great great grandfather was a steel producer in Sheffield and I assumed that these cranes were made by his company. It now seems to me that they could have been made by an Indian company called Jessop and Company formed by sons of William Jessop (no known relation).

    Can you please give me any information on the history of these cranes. Presumably they no longer exist?

    Any information would be very welcome.

    I have visited the Museum and met one of the staff in Australia - I think they were involved in taking an exhibition to Cape Town (my wife was at that time on the staff of the South Australian Maritime Museum).


    John Jessop

    14 Aug 2009
    Bruce Ward wrote:
    Dear Mr. Jessop. I will forward your email address and April 2008 posting re Cranes at Cape Town to Mr. John Steeds of the UK.

    Mr Steeds is the principal Appleby, Jessop and Jessop & Appleby Historian.

    One or more of companies (all inter-related) certainly made the cranes you refer to.

    It is unlikely they were from the Indian company.

    Canals, bridges, iron, steel, cranes and diverse items are - as I am sure you know - connected to the name "Jessop" in the UK and world engineering from about 1800 until the 1920's.

    Not all have traceable family connections, however.

    Best wishes in your search.

    Bruce Ward

    22 Aug 2009
    John Steeds wrote:
    Dear John Thank you for your enquiry about Jessop Cranes which has been forwarded to me by Bruce Ward in Australia. My great grandfather Charles James Appleby was at one time in partnership with one Joseph Jessop and his son George Jessop. They had a works in Leicester - The London Steam Crane and Engine Works. Without knowing the details of the cranes you saw (do you have a photo of them?), I would think that they may have from the Leicester Works. The various Appleby / Jessop companies manufacture cranes between about 1860 and 1906.

    Joseph Jessop was born in was born on 27th March 1825, at Horbury, near Wakefield. He was the son of George and Ann Jessop.

    I believe that your nth great grandfather, William Jessop, was born at the other end of the country in Devonport, in 1745 and that he died in 1814.

    So far as I can make out there is no connection between the families. If you happen to have an extended family tree for the Jessop's, you may be able to tell me if there was, indeed, a connection between Joseph's father, George and your William Jessop.

    Do you have any more information about William Jessop? I would like to know more about his involvement with the Butterley Iron Works, which he founded and any other Sheffield family connections. The Appleby's were a Sheffield family and they had Iron Works which dates back to 1785. Thomas Appleby, who founded the Iron Works also died in 1814, the same year as your William Jessop.

    Do you know anything more about the William Jessop who you say founded the Indian Jessop crane company? I don't know of any connection with the Indian company.

    John Steeds

    There might be other references to this ship also on this page

    War in the South Atlantic
    Mar 2008
    Capt Ozires Moraes
    First of all I wish to congratulate with you for this superb and unequalled website.
    Reading John Marsh poignant history no one can deny the extraordinary abnegation and his profound historical vision.

    We are launching a website in Brazil which focuses on the war in the South Atlantic. I need some pictures of a few german blockade runners that I saw in the archives. They are:
    #67 Adolf Leonhardt
    #69 Adolf Woermann
    #391 Anneliese Essberger
    #198 Cassel
    #353 Erlangen
    #75 Karnak
    #115 Ussukuma
    #181 Watussi

    In fact I need other ship's pictures however I did not find them. They were
    Wakama, Rio Grande, Portland, Olinda, Norderney, Lech, Inn, Goslar, Ussukuma, Franken, Esso Hamburg, Ermland, Carl Fritzen, Burgenland and Babitonga.
    Visit my website
    With my kindest regards
    Capt Ozires Moraes

    United States Freighter ADMIRAL HALSTEAD
    Mar 2008
    Peter Leonard
    I am looking for any photos of the ship Admiral Halstead 3289tons thay was damaged during the attack on Darwin (Australia)on the 19/02/1942.
    Thank you.

    Mar 2008
    Dorothy Lochhead
    I am a British war bride that came to Canada on the Ariguani in September 1945. I am trying to get a passenger list from this ship. Can you help me?
    Hercules block-setting crane
    Feb 2008
    Robert Brodie
    I've been trying to find information on the giant Hercules block-setting crane that used to operate on the breakwater of Cape Town harbour when I was a boy in the 1950s. The only references I've found to it are in websites dedicated to Meccano models. Apparently the crane was introduced in 1931. Do you have any idea where I can research its specifications and what happened to it?
    Thank you.
    Robert Brodie

    West coast fishing boats and Owners
    Feb 2008
    Paul Jacobs
    I am searching for a book on the history of Port Nolloth, Hondeklipbay fishing fleet. I cannot think that there is no record of the fine Ovenstone and Northbay crayfish boats I will appreciate any information
    Graf Spee
    Feb 2008
    Dirk Besseling
    Can anyone clarify whether the Graf Spee called in at Swakopmund before crossing the Atlantic to the River Plate? Someone claims to have seen a photograph of this off the Mole & I am intrigued.
    Feb 2008
    Jean Rodmell
    My mother and sister sailed from Newport, Wales on (I think 4th) March 1940 on a passenger ship. My memory is that the ship was called Akarua and its final destination was either Canada or Australia. My mother, my sister and myself left the ship at Port of Spain, Trinidad where my father had been transferred to the fleet air arm training base for pilots called Piarco.

    I understand that it was the last ship carrying women and children that left the UK during the war, given the danger of the Atlantic at that time.

    As I remember the story the ship was torpedoed shortly after leaving Port of Spain with all passengers and crew lost.

    No matter how I have tried to research this ship I cannot find it. I know it sailed - I was on it! It did take three weeks to get to Port of Spain due to the circuitous route taken. The three of us returned on the troop ship Dominion Monarch at the end of the war - that one I have found.

    I do hope you can help.

    Mrs. Jean Rodmell

    Cape Clear
    Jan 2008
    Marco Errigo
    I'm looking for everything that concerns the british cargo ship "Cape Clear" that sunk after a collision with the S.S. Henry Dearborn in 1944 (21st august)...

    Would you be so kind to give me infos (and photo, if is possible!) about the liberty ship Henry Dearborn?

    Thanks for your help!
    Marco Errigo

    SS Nirpura
    Jan 2008
    susan campbell
    I am trying to find out any information on the sinking of the SS Nirpura which i believe was torpedoed in 1919.My great grandfathers nephew was one of the men who died and so far we know that he decided to swim back to the ship after it was hit and sinking presumably to try to save others.Any info on it would be grateful.

    4 Nov 2009
    Stephen Surko wrote:
    With regards to the sinking of SS Nirpura, I have been researching my grandfather's stuff from World War One and found the attached radio service record. My grandfather, Frederick Foulkes, was a signalman aboard USS Manning on convoy escort duty.

    Stephen Surko, P.E.

    There might be other references to this ship also on this page

    Santarem (formerly Eisenach)
    Jan 2008
    Michael Gauderer
    Does anyone have a photograph of the steamship Santarem (Lloyd Brasileiro) formerly Eisenach (North German Lloyd)? It was built 1908 by Bremen Vulkan, Vegesack, Germany. Tonnage:6.757. Call name PUCE. It was seized by the Brazilian government in 1917 after it made fast to be sheltered in Pernambuco in 1914. The ship was apparently scuttled in 1962 in Brazil. I was a passenger on this ship in 1949.
    I do appreciate a photo or other pertinent information.
    Thank you. M. Gauderer.

    TS McEwan
    Jan 2008
    Jean Thatcher
    I wonder if you could please advise me what should be done with four 'Tug Engine Room Log Books from the TS McEwan' dating from 1930 and 1955. I am moving house and would very much like to take the correct action as they belonged to my grandfather and as such are of sentimental value but I am clueless if there is any historical value. I await your response.
    Jean Thatcher

    Relaince and Broughton
    Jan 2008
    Robert Chappell
    I am trying to find out as much information about a Frederick Veenendaal born around 1900 died unknown who travelled to South Australia in 1925 and 1927 he was a NCO or Seaman I presume on both these ships. Lived in Virginia Street Cape Town South Africa.
    Dec 2007
    Andre van Wyk
    Ek is op soek na fotos van die Issie wat in die jare 1960 en 70 passasiers vervoer het vanaf Kaapstad hawe na Robbeneiland. Indien u ook enige ander geskiedenis van hom het, sal ek dit waardeer as u dit vir my beskikbaar kan stel. Ek was op Robbeneiland gestasioneer vanaf 1965 tot 1970 en het op die Issie en Dias gewerk.

    U Samewerking word waardeer.

    Andre van Wyk.

    HMS Castor
    Dec 2007
    Nicky Findlay
    I am trying to trace information of any visits the HMS Castor made to South Africa, as my family were supposed to have come to SA aboard the ship. Apparently one of the sons were born on the ship, hence the tradition of giving the eldest son the second name "Castor". I know there were a number of ships named HMS Castor, but I assume the one I'm interested in was the one that sailed between 1832 and 1902, mostly around Australia.
    Any info would be much appreciated.

    HMAT Katuna
    Dec 2007
    Brett Heath
    I am seeking a photograph of the HMAT Katuna ( later renamed City of Swansea).

    My grandfather Harry O'Donovan, as a member of the Australian 4th Light Horse Regiment, was transported from Melbourne on board the Katuna on 3rd February 1915. I believe that the regiment was landed in Egypt, prior to embarking to Gallipoli.

    SS Mexican
    Dec 2007
    Anne Swart
    My great-grandfather, G.G.K. Schmidt, came to South Africa on board the SS Mexican in 1887. He travelled from Rotterdam to Cape Town ( Cape Colony) We have the trunk that he used for his luggage and would very much appreciate any other information. I read in an article of the Union Castle company that it was transferred to the Union Castle Mail SS Co. in 1900 and that it sank in 1900 after a collision with Winkfield near Cape Town.

    I really hope that somebody has more information or perhaps a photo.

    Thank you. Anne Swart

    Oronsay 1951
    Dec 2007
    I have a 6 inch brass bell that has Oronsay 1951 engraved on the front of it. There is no makers stamp on the rim. It was a gift from a mariner friend of the family around 1976. I'm just wondering if this was on the ship or a commemorative bell. I've got pics. If anyone has any info please let me know. Thanks, Craig
    Nov 2007
    Geoffrey BRAZIER
    I am currently researching a series of troopships, in which, members of No 6 RAF Radio School association sailed during WW2. I am having trouble obtaining historic details of HMT Bamfora, other than two entries of sailings, on the 'web' under 'Bamfora'.

    Bamfora is now a district in Burkina Faso. originally a part of French West Africa. I was informed by the member concerned that he thought that she was French, built for mediterranean service although the wartime crew were British.

    Regards --------- Geoff.

    Sinking of LCG 15 and 16 off Welsh Coast in April 1943
    Nov 2007
    Janet A Baker
    My mother's fiance was drowned in the Landing Craft (LCG 16) when it floundered off the Welsh coast on I think April 26th 1943. They were going to be married the following month. I believe an inquiry followed about the circumstances surrounding the disaster and would like to know more about what happened and what the investigation found. Can you help?

    Training Ships Arethusa and Warspite
    Nov 2007
    Janet A Baker
    I am currently undertaking research into the social history of my family. My mother says that she has a picture of my grandfather (b 1890)in a sailor's uniform and she says that he was on either Arethusa or Warspite at the beginning of the 1900s. She has mislaid the photograph but recalls her father, who was part of a very impoverished family, speaking of being on one of these training ships and sailing around the world, passing a misty Tristan de Cunha and sailing on to Australia before the Sydney bridge was built.

    I would like to know whether these anecdotes are 'accurate' and more especially where I could lay my hands on the ships' logs for that period + list of crew and 'boys' on board during that period to check whether or not he was on board.

    S.S. Barbara Marie
    Nov 2007
    Tony Chilvers
    I am tracing the (short) life of what would have been my Uncle (George Lambert Chilvers) who was just 16 when killed when SS Barbara Marie was torpedoed on 12th June 1940.

    The only trace I have found for this ship is on your website.

    Do you have any history of the ship, especially how/where it was lost?

    Tony Chilvers.

    m.v. Brastagi
    Nov 2007
    Coos de Vries
    Do you have by any chance a photograph of the wreck of m.v. 'Brastagi'(Dutch) which ran on the beach of Caldeira island in Mozambique? The date was end October 1947.
    12 Jan 2010
    Michael_Zwiker wrote:
    Dear Sir,

    We are researching the MV Brastagi which in 1942 was hit with a Japanese bomb in the harbor of Espirito Santo. We have a veteran who wishes to use information about this vessel and the Japanese bombing in 1942 in his claim with the Department of Veterans Affairs. The ship was not sunk (obviously) by the bomb but it did do damage to the deck and the super structure.

    Do you have any information about the MV Brastagi from the 1942 period?

    Michael J. Zwiker

    1 Feb 2010
    E. A. Bor wrote:
    What a coincidence, I am Dutch and looking for a photograph of the stranded Dutch ship named Brastagi near the Isle of Caldeira near Mocambique in 1947.

    Eddie Bor

    There might be other references to this ship also on this page

    m/v Willem Barendz
    Nov 2007
    Steve Arendse
    Please give me some peace of mind-I spent long weekends onboard this big ship off Robben Island between 1970-1973.My Dad was Raymond Arendse(deceased since 18 July 1975). I want to build a model of this ship for my Mom-Gwen who knitted jerseys at that time for crew. My Dad started his sea life with a trip to the Antarctic ice and I recall him telling me some grand stories.(MEMORY LIKE AN ELEPHANT) I live in Ireland now and still sail my warships(models) I am a big 40 year old..ha ha-please forward me some information about this grand lady...I still recall the smell.

    We went out with a tug from the old robben island terminal.My grandfather-Sidney John Arendse (deceased)worked in the engine room.Some one onboard had a dog.We climbed into a basket and they would hoist us up and if my Mom got cheeky they would stop it and it would turn...she could swear...

    Steve Arendse-Ex SA Navy (gunner-7years)/ex Debeers Marine-plant supervisor (12years)

    July 2008
    Caroline Mitrovich
    My father, Anton Borgart, from Holland was working on the Willem Barendz for Radio Nederland,

    Have lots of fotos!

    Caroline Mitrovich

    His daughter

    Charles Edward Karsen
    Nov 2007
    Heather Walker
    I am looking for records of my grandfather's maritime service. He arrived from Germany in the second half of the 19th century. He is listed as a sailor in an 1880 census of German nationals living in Cape Town. Family lore has it that he jumped ship, was involved in whaling in the early part of his career and trawler fishing from Cape Town in the latter years( he spent months at a time away from his family ). He died in 1910. His anglicized first names were Charles Edward; surname Karsen. Any leads would be appreciated.I live in Gauteng

    October 2008
    Lesley de Clercq
    Hi Heather,
    My maiden surname is also Karsen. My father, Glenmor Lionel Karsen is the last living son of Percival Charles Karsen who died in 1945 when my father was 14 years old (he is now 77 years old). My Grandfather, Percival Charles had nine brothers and sisters.

    I was wondering if your grandfather and my grandfather were related in anyway.


    Lesley de Clercq

    Ras Madraka and Nafun wrecks
    Oct 2007
    Jan Schreurs

    On the cliffs just north of the village of Nafun on Oman's Arbian Sea coastline there are the remains of a small steamship. They comprise a single boiler (Scottish) and what looks like two triple expansions steam engines that powered a twin screw ship, probably made of wood (schooner or barge?). Normally these engines would have been salvaged, but the remoteness of the site probably made that impossible. The machinery is very rusty, except for the copper parts. One piece still shows the cast of what must have been "Glenfield", but the last "d" is not readable anymore. This probably refers to Glenfield & Co. of Kilmarnock. A company still in existence, making valves, but which used to also produce steam engines.The local fishermen must have been stripping the more mobile parts of the ship (wood) as very little else but the heavy machinery remains. We found the remains of the anchor and other parts in little caves.

    Who can help to identify the wreck?

    2) Wrecks near Ras Madraka (also spelled as Madrakah) in Oman. The beach also features the remains of a modern orange lifeboat with Piraeus several times on its bow. Where could I find information on wrecks along the Omani coast along the Arabian Sea?

    SA Seafarer
    Oct 2007
    Thomas Harvey
    Am looking for any information on the circumstances surrounding the grounding of the SA Seafarer in 1966.
    Two of the officers on board were known to me, the second officer Christopher Miles and the Chief Officer Gillespie.
    I would like to know if it is possible to access the record of the Court of Inquiry into the grounding?

    Shipwrecks along Mossel Bay coast.
    Sep 2007
    Erna Marx
    If someone needs help about shipwrecks around Mossel Bay, I can help with information.

    Shipwrecks along Mossel Bay coast.

    Melbourne, Haliartus, La Fortune, Huis te Marquette, Kron Princess of Denmark, Rosebud, Susan Pardew, Floating Dock, King Cenric, Santos, Firefly, Zara, Cape Hangklip, Cape Point, Peter S, Maranata, Elephant, Eclair, Asiatic, Sabor, Lyndhurst, Seal, Soares Wreck, George T hay, Lady Pryse, Louisa Dorothea, Ruby, Mary, Galera, Galatea, Seagull, Martha, Nancy, Kate, Mary, Argyle, Dennia, Annie Benn, Erin, Wilhelmine, Philia, Poiseidon, Star of the East, Voortrekker. Total of 46. Some are fishing trawlers.

    Erna Marx
    Dias Museum Complex
    Mossel Bay
    South Africa

    Nov 2007
    Harcourt Gardiner
    I am writing the history of the J F Whitney Co of New York. The following is what I have accumulated on this ship . If you can add to it I would appreciate it .
    George T Hay Ship 1647 Tons 1887 –
    The “George T Hay” was named after the senior partner of J F Whitney and Company George T. Hay became the president of J F Whitney and Company in 1884
    John Hay Whitney was a member of the family so the Hay’s and Whitney’s might have intermarried at some point. ·
    Built 1887 by the Spencer’s Island, Ship Building Company, Bay of Fundy, Nova Scotia ·
    Cost $$55, 985.69 ·
    Registry Number 90,514 Parrsboro NS ·
    International Flag Signal S.L.K.M. ·
    Length 235 feet 6 inches. Breadth, 42 feet. Depth of Hold, 23 feet 6 inches ·
    Agents J, F, Whitney and Company ·
    Three masted full rigged ship ·
    Original Shareholders: _ George D., Johnson, Eurias, and Ada Spicer, Amasa and Mrs. Loomer Nathan and Minnie Eaton, W.H. Bigelow, Antoinette Sayre, all of Spencer’s Island. Sir Charles Tupper, Amherst. Robert W. Spicer, Wharton. Robert Dewis and Clement McLellan , both of Advocate , Mark Shaw New York
    A very fast ship. On one 3 day period in the South Atlantic she traveled 960 nautical Miles.
    The George T Hay ready for launching at Spencer’s Island Nova Scotia 1887 That she was a lofty ship can be seen by the man standing on the main topsail yards ( middle of picture) The tides in the locality of the Bay of Fundy rise and fall about 40 feet and this picture was taken at low tide. Photo courtesy of the Mariners Museum, Newport News, Virginia, USA.
    Three thousand people attended her launching. “The Tea” was a gresat success , raising over $640.00 for the local church.
    Mar 6, 1897 Colonial Office (United Kingdom) - Sentenced passed on Noah Amos, second mate of the GEORGE T. HAY of Nova Scotia, for assault on a seaman. In 1897 George Leonard Fraser was a mate and John Walter Lemon an able seaman aboard this ship..
    In 1898 was chartered to bring coal from Philadelphia to Manila for Admiral Dewey’s fleet during the Spanish American War. .
    Captain Robert Dewis’s last command was the George T Hay. He took her to Liverpool, England from Spencer’s Island with a cargo of deal and reloaded with salt for New York. Two days out she sprang a bad leak and returned to Liverpool listing badly. The salt was unloaded the leak repaired and the salt reloaded and delivered to New York. He left the ship there and returned to the family farm in West Advocate that had been left to him by his father Joshua. His wife , Emily Jane Spicer died after a long illness on April 7, 1917 and a year later in April 1918 Robert Dewis after all the high risk years at sea was killed, gored by his bull on the family farm.
    March 1906 Ship casualty list, South Africa. George T Hay, lost at Cape St. Blaize
    A second source, George T Hay caught fire with a cargo of hay off South Africa and abandoned Captain Edmund Spicer and crew rescued by a Norwegian Barque and landed at Port Elizabeth, South Africa
    A third source, on her way to the River Plate, South America, to pick up a load of baled straw from Rosario they hit a submerged object. She began leaking slightly so carried on. Loaded the straw and on the trip to Luderitz Bay, German South Africa, she began taking on so much water she had to be abandoned., after being set on fire. All hands were saved.
    Sep 2007
    Bob Kirby
    My wife has a ships trunk with a painting of the Lyndhurst, a 4 masted barque, inside the lid. This has been in her family for many years and is believed to have belonged to either Raphael or Salvatori Cilento, both of whom were seamen bacl in the later 1800's and early 1900's before settling in South Australia.

    I am aware that the vessel caught fire near Port Elizabeth on August 24 1911 and was abandoned and later sunk.

    Just wondering if you have any further info re the sinking and/or any crew lists of that time.

    4 Jan 2012
    George Birbeck wrote:
    I'm interested in the clipper ship, Star of the East, which was wrecked off the coast of South Africa in 1861. My gr-gr-grandfather's brother, David Birbeck, is said to have been a pssenger when it ran into difficulties. Any information concerning the ship, it's passengers, which way it was heading - to Australia or to Britain - would be welcome.

    Thanking you in advance,

    George Birbeck

    25 Jun 2013
    Darren Birbeck wrote:
    Dear Erna,
    I am looking for details of the survivors of the shipwreck "Martha" off of Mossel Bay in 1845.
    Martha (1845)
    Brig commanded by Captain Boustead. Wrecked 3 km from the landing-place in Mossel Bay in the evening of 30 august 1845 during a south-east gale.
    She had been sailing from Sydney to Table Bay with 20 immigrants and a large cargo of mail, and entered the bay because of the loss of her boats and the low state of her provisions.
    No lives were lost, and the mail was saved.
    * Shipping Register, Cape Archives, C.C.2/16
    * South African Commercial Advertiser, 6 September 1845.
    Any assistance would be greatly appreciated. My particular interest is in t he names of the crew.
    Kind regards
    Darren Birbeck
    South Australia

    There might be other references to this ship also on this page

    Depth markings on South African Tugs
    Sep 2007
    Robin Stobbs
    Can you please confirm that the old steam tugs had roman numerals for depth at the bow on their starboard side but Arabic numerals on their port side. I'm making a 1:32 scale model of CF Kayser and want to get it right!! Thanks
    Barkassen Flender II
    Sep 2007
    Henry Tornow
    Hi, does anyone have any info regarding the 'sleepbarkassen' Flender II ex. Hamburg, ex. Lubeck. The tug was built 1941 by Franz Mello in Hamburg. I have no info on this boat before the late 60’s. Its last job was harbour tug at the Flender shipyard in Lubeck, Germany.

    Best regards

    Henry Tornow

    Fishermen in Buffelsbaai in early 1900
    Sep 2007
    Natasha Lombard
    Can you please help me find information about my great-great or great grandfathers whose names were Jacob and Johannes Muller. They were fishermen in Buffelsbaai during the Late 1800's to early 1900's and owned property there.

    One, Robert Muller (my great grandfather's son) died whilst fishing. I was told that my great grandfather may have died in the early 1930's. I was also told by my cousin that a monument was built on his land after he had died and that historical information about this is found at the Belvidere Church in Knysna. We (the family) feel very strongly about this as we are trying to ascertain as much information as possible in order to share the family history with our children.

    Many thanks

    Costanza 1824 " Russian Flag"
    Sep 2007
    David Sinon
    We are gathering info about the sea life and journeys of Giuseppe Garibaldi.
    His journeys initiated:
    January 1824 on the Russian Flag ship Costanza (manned by Italian sailors)
    November 1824 on the Santa Reparata along the French Coast
    In 1827 sailed on the Coromandel ship via Strait of Gibralta to the Canaries.

    In september 1827 / 1828 sailed on the Cortese for the Black Sea and Costantinople. In February 1832 sailed as first commander on the Nostra Signora delle Grazie
    Also 1832 sailed on the Clorinda in the Mediterranean.
    Any sketch, drawing or pictures of what the above ships looked like would be great as we are working on a project about Giuseppe Garibaldi's sea journeys.

    Much appreciated and thank you again.

    Sep 2007
    Linda Wright
    My grandfather John Irving, my grandmother Sara, and all my aunts and uncles were on that ship coming to Canada 1925.

    My mother who was only year old was also on that ship. We four children were taken away from our mother when we were very young, were living in British Columbia, I am despertly looking for any of my relatives


    Sep 2007
    Pat Lowe
    I am trying to locate any information about the ship Hope and it's voyage to South Africa from England in 1826.

    My family is supposed to have come to South Africa on that ship. The family was Richard Humphreys and his wife Ann Watson, three children Stephen, Joseph & John, with the the only girl, Sarah "Hope" Humphreys being born on board ship while they were in the Bay of Biscay 10 Aug 1826.

    Pat Lowe

    SAS Simon Van Der Stel
    Sep 2007
    Gail Glazier
    I am looking for information about the crew of the SAS Simon Van der Stel during the flag showing tour of Europe during 1954. I am particularly interested in a WT operator called Dave Green who met my mother in Portsmouth. She was in the WRENs at the time.
    City of Paris
    Aug 2007
    Jim Binnie
    I am seeking information on the Ellerman liner "City of Paris" which was torpedoed during the 1914 - 18 war. My Father was a midshipman on board her at the time and I believe spent 24 hours in a lifeboat. I have seen some general details of the sinking before but I am hoping to write a short story for my grand children about the event.


    Jim Binnie

    Aug 2007
    Jan Koopmans
    I'd like to order a print of the photo of the ship 'Werdenfels' if available. During WW II the Werdenfels was named 'Balingkar' after heving been taken over by the Dutch. She was torpedoed by a U-boat in 1942. At the moment I'm trying to collect as much photo's as possible from dutch ships torpedoed during WW II.

    With kind regards,

    Jan Koopmans

    ss kilkerran
    Aug 2007
    Can you please tell me anything about the ss kilkerran 23/01/1906.

    many thanks.


    Clan Macfadyen
    July 2007
    Vicky Allamand
    I am interested in finding a copy of a picture of the "Clan Macfadyen" - built in 1923 and torpedoed and sunk off Trinidad on 26th November 1942. It think it is the ship recorded as number C - 563 in your records. My Grandfather was one of the 82 crew lost on the ship when it sank.

    Vicky Allamand

    July 2008
    Kåre Nordahl Lundby Garsow
    I have managed to find some answers to your request. They are attached in pdf format.
    Kåre Nordahl Lundby Garsow
    28 Dec 2010
    Anne Penney wrote:
    Hi Vicky
    My grandfather Percy Edgar Williams was Captain of the ship when she was torpedoed & sadly went down with his ship & most of his crew. I may have a picture of the ship somewhere & certainly have one of the plaque listing all the crew on the roll of honour on Tower Hill in London.
    Do get in touch

    Suderoy XII
    May 2007
    Hector Mendieta
    I have one photo of whale catcher ex Suderoy XII when it was whaler in Chile for Indus Company of Valparaiso ( 1960-1966)by which it was renamed "Indus 19". This ship was sold for "Macaya Hermanos" in 1967 of Talcahuano (Chile). The "19" worked as a catcher until 1971. The "Macaya family" decided to sink it in "Caleta Tumbes" of Talcahuano because they didn't get sponsorship to change it into museum.
    May 2007
    Dudley Wessels
    Ek is tans 'n toergids wat aan DBCM kontrak toere doen op die "Skeepswrak Roete" tussen Koingnaas en Kleinzee.

    In die museum op Kleinzee is n foto van die gesinkinkte "Luna" wat omtrent 1km suid van die Piratini le. Is daar eneige informasie wat jy vir my kan gee oor die spesefike wrak?

    Ek kan min of meer bepaal van die foto waar hy le maar ek sal graag meer agtergrond oor die skip he.
    Baie dankie
    Dudley Wessels

    Feb 2008
    Paul Jacobs
    Dudley die Luna was n klein stoom kus vaarder op pad van Port Nolloth na Kaapstad en was gelaai met n vrag spoor sleepers. Die sleepers was van die Port Nolloth OOkiep spoorlyn wat opgebreek was. My broer Douglas Goslett sou op die boot gewees het maar my Pa het n argument met n Mr Meadows want my Pa was nie tevrede met die vrag lading (dit kom nou voor dat my Pa n wyse besluit geneem het om my broer van die boot af te haal). Ek het n paar boeke wat verdere inligting het oor bote op ons kus.
    Se groete aan Dirk, Paul Jacobs ex Koingnaas

    Mar 2008
    Phillip Schoeman
    Ek het per toeval op jou boodskap afgekom terwyl ek inligting oor 'n onbekende wrak aan die suid-Namiebise kus gesoek het. Het jy al reg gekom met die inligting wat jy gesoek het? Indien nie, kan ek probeer help. Ek het omtrent 18 jaar gelede navorsing gedoen oor die wrakke aan die Suid-Afrikaanse kus.
    22 Aug 2014
    Jan Serfontein wrote:
    Hi Phillip, Ek woon in Walvisbaai en doen ook navorsing op skeepswrakke. Miskien kan ons notas vergelyk.

    Union Whaling Company
    May 2007
    Dave Trudgeon
    Would you be able to give me any information on the Abraham Larsen whaling ship, I believe it was part of the Union Whaling Company based in Durban, South Africa in the 1950's. But believe the owners of this company were originally from Norway? I have a photograph of this ship in Durban's harbour and wondered if you had any more information and photographs of this ship.

    My grandfather John Trudgeon worked on this ship and unfortunately he died before I was born so never really knew much about him. I also have a whales tooth with the Abraham Larsen drawn onto it, I believe this is called a scrimshaw? Do you have any whales teeth with similar artwork?

    Thank you

    Dave Trudgeon

    Nov 2007
    Paula Lamon
    My great grandfather is Abraham Larsen - I will be able to get pictures of the ship for you if you still haven't had any luck finding any.
    Feb 2008
    roy steiger
    extracted from " african keyport " author---- captain tony pearson.
    the union whaling company, was formed in 1903, by the then norwegian consul in durban, and a person named abraham larsen.
    the whale factory ship, was originally named the empire victory being a german ww2 prize. on her 2nd voyage to the antartic -1947- she was re-named "abraham larsen".
    the whale factory ship with 14 whale catches in attendance,used too sail for the antartic each southern-summer.
    the --skippers--harpoon-gunners--were all norwegians. a number of skippers were killed in a plane-crash when returning to norway on leave one year.
    many of the whale-catchers were ex-royal navy mine-sweepers.
    all were powered by oil-burning steam triple expansion engines by choice, diesel power was to noisy underwater.
    roy steiger
    May 2008
    Dave Karlsen
    Please find attached a link to some information on the Abraham Larsen and
    My father was on the Abraham Larsen on the 1953 expedition to the Antarctic, the same year that I was born. I have forwarded your query to him for any comment as well.
    As far as whales teeth go and the practice of scrimshaw, we have many examples in our family.
    My grandfather started with Union Whaling back in 1908 and eventually became a gunner as did my uncle. My father was shore based here in Durban firstly at Union Whaling's Congella workshops and later at the Whaling Station on the sea side of the bluff until it closed down in 1973.
    Dave Karlsen

    May 2008
    Herman Karlsen

    My Son David sent me your inquiry about the “ f/f Abraham Larsen “ on which your Grandfather John Trudgeon had worked. I can’t say that I remember the name but if you have a photo of him taken around that time that you can send me I might recognize him, one never knows we might even have served on the“ f/f Abraham Larsen “ at the same time.
    I am however familiar with the “ f/f Abraham Larsen “ as I had 2 Seasons down the Antarctic on her as a Fitter in the workshop (1952-1953)and(1953-1954) seasons I also had 1 trip on the whale catcher “J.K.Hansen (10)” (1951-1952) season.
    Having been associated with Union Whaling Co for approximately 23 years firstly as an apprentice then as a fitter in their workshops at Congella and later as a Shift Engineer at the Whaling Station on the Bluff Durban until the whaling station closed down in 1976 all of which I have fond memories.
    My father Capt. Bjarne (Oslo) Karlsen and my brother Capt. Norman Karlsen both deceased were gunners on the whale catchers. I have attached some photos which you might find interesting
    Best Regards
    Herman Karlsen
    Some Facts about :-

  • “ F/F Abraham Larsen “
  • Whaling Factory Ship
  • Built in. Germany in 1937 and was named “ Unitas “
  • She was later Seized by Allies at Flensburg as a War prize
  • 1945 She was renamed “ EMPIRE VICTORY “
  • 1950 She was sold to Union Whaling Co. South Africa who renamed her “ABRAHAM LARSEN “.
  • 1957 She was sold to Taiyo Gyogyo KK, Japan. Who then renamed her “ NISSHIN MARU No.2,”
  • 1987 She was scrapped in Taiwan
  • Sept 2008
    Ricky Joyce
    Hi I have had two uncle work aboard the Abraham Larsen,one of my uncles went missing at see on expedition to the antarctic his name Wallace Joyce his body was never recovered does anyone know what happened or are there any pictures of him out there.

    His Brother Kenneth Joyce is still alive and loves to reminisc about the whaling days there is a mention of him in the article called remember the whalers

    Naval base at Ramsgate,South Africa
    May 2007
    Fiona Parkinson
    Hi, could you possibly help me with any information regarding the history of an old naval base which used to be situated at Ramsgate on the Natal South Coast ?

    Many thanks


    Oct 2008
    Cath Wickins
    I am interested in any historical or anecdotal information regarding Ramsgate on the Kwazulu Natal South Coast, whether it be maritime or other. Thanks

    SS Hycinthus
    April 2007
    Elgar Matthewson
    My Grandfather, Ernest Henry Matthewson, arrived in New York as crew on board the "Hyacinthus' in 1921 - he boarded the ship in Durban and this is the last trace I have of him.

    The shipping list indicates that he was not to be paid off at the end of that voyage which I understand was from Durban via Cape Town to New York.

    I will be very grateful for any information that will lead me to ascertain where the "Hyacinthus" went from New York and if he stayed on board the Hyacinthus.

    I understand that the "Hyacinthus" was built in 1902 and scrapped in 1930 but this infirmation is taken from the internet and I have not confirmed it and I THINK it was part of the Houston shipping line but I am happy to be corrected if that is incorrect!

    28 Dec 2010
    Anne Penney wrote:
    Hi Elgar
    A little more info on the Hyacinthus. She was owned by the British & South American Steamship Company which was managed by Houston & Co. Her LLoyds number was 115279 & she was 5785 tons. Built in 1902 by Palmers in Newcastle UK& scrapped in 1930. My grandfather did one trip on her as mate in Sept 1922 when she sailed to the East Indies (Burmah, Mauritius, Red Sea) Have not got full details of the trip. but records are kept in the Lloyds Registers in the Guildhall London so it may be possible for you to get details from them.

    King Lud
    Mar 2007
    Frank Carn-Pryor
    I'm doing a bit of research into the merchant vessel King Lud which was sunk in 1942. I wondered if there was anymore information available or pictures of the ship.

    Regards Frank.

    Mar 2008
    David Davies
    Hi Frank
    I am the nephew of the king Luds 4th Engineer Officer Brinley Charles Davies who I never met he died 2 years before I was born. From what my father could tell me she was outward bound from Ceylon loaded with munitions and was lost reason unknown to my father when he died age 84 in 2002.
    Have since found out that she was torpedoed by IJN submarine I 10 off madagascar 8th June 1942 all hands lost?
    No ships photos found todate or which shipping line she belonged.

    my uncle was the 3rd engineer aboard the Lyle Park (registered Greenock) when she was attacked off west Africa on the 11th June 1942.
    His name is Edward Richard Davies aged 26 and unmarried.
    The attack on this vessel is mentioned in the book by Ulrich Mohr fortunes of war "Phantom raider".
    My father made contact through a South Wales news paper with a crew member who when he was in one of the ships life boats he and the others could hear Eddy who was off watch in his cabin shouting through his porthole that the cabin door had become wedged shut and he was trapped inside he went down with the ship.

    David Davies

    Feb 2007
    Neville Tonkinson
    Around the turn of the year 1933/4 my father stowed away in a German vessel named `ESSEN`.

    Some information I have come across suggests she was seized by the Dutch in 1940 and renamed `TERKOLEI`. She being torpedoed and sunk 18 Mar. 1943.

    I would dearly love more information about the vessel and hopefully a picture (or information where I could begin looking for one).

    Neville J.Tonkinson.

    Dec 2007
    Kåre Nordahl Lunby Garsow
    A torpedo launched by U 631 sank the Wessel Terkoelei. The C.O. was Oberleutnant Jürgen Krüger. If you type the below mentioned address in your browser, you will get more info.;nr=2

    HMS Galatea
    Feb 2007
    Kirsty Tamblyn
    I am researching my family tree and my grandad before he died mentioned a cousin who died on the HMS Galatea in the war. I have found out when and how the ship sank but i cannot find a roll of honour. I have not got a surname to go by but with a list i can hopefully work out who i am looking for. If anyone can help me locate a roll of honour i would appreciate it.
    Apr 2008
    Dave Mallinson
    Hi Kirsty I have just come across your request for a Roll of honour for the cruiser HMS GALETEA. I attach the list of those crew members who were lostwhen the ship was torpedoed on the 14 December 1941 in the Mediterranean, north west of Alexandria, by U557. Regards


    stontamar naval research

    See "./galetea.html" on this site

    WWII Animal Transport ships photos & data
    Feb 2007
    William A.Layton
    I am looking for a way of locating Information & Photos of the troopships that carried Animals (Mules and Horses) across the oceans to Europe and into the South Pacific Islands. There were 19 ships that carried the animals that pulled the equipment and light Howitzers in to combat. The ships I can’t find any data or photos are listed below. Thanks Bill Layton Ships I have Photos of are:
    Nov 2007
    I understand from this site you have a photo of USAT TJITEGARA.

    I am doing a major Project on New Zealand Airmen who trained in Canada during WW2. We had a small group of 14 Airmen who went to Canada on this ship on the 21st March 1942 ex Wellington bound for New Orleans, then by train to Canada.

    I do not know , but believe she belonged to the Java Shipping Co.? Do you have any details of her. We have a photo of the USAT TJITJALENKA 11.000 tons

    She's a much bigger ship and may not have been used for transporting animal


    HMS Pretoria Castle
    Feb 2007
    David Cumming
    can you please help me to trace any photos of the ship, and or crew. As my father was on this ship from 31 december 1943 to 14 march 1945, and from 24 may 1945 to 21 march 1946. He was ranked Petty Officer, his name was Frank Cumming.Official number-mx69575.
    SS Virgilia
    Feb 2007
    Jim Barr
    My father, James Barr ( DoB 16 September 1901 ) had one round trip in 1927/1928 on the SS Virgilia from Greenock to Rouen; Rouen to South Shields. I have his Merchant Navy Discharge Book and would like info as to his duties as a 4th/5th Engineer. I have a reference from the first engineer John MacDonald praising his work and disposition , but little else. Where was the ship built; when launchedm ; type of cargo. I know that it was torpedoed by a German E Boat in 1941, but little else. Can anyone help as I am preparing his genealogy. Thanks. Jim Barr
    16 Nov 2011
    Susan Lawrence wrote:
    Hello Jim -

    I just came across your post at and am intrigued by the 1927/1928 dates when your father, James Barr, was an engineer on the SS Virgilia. Although I cannot be sure it is the same ship, my recent genealogical research has revealed a link to a Barque Virgilia of South Shields. If this is the same ship, the timeline noted below may assist you in your research.

    I have a gold pocket watch that was presented to my great-grandfather and is inscripted as follows:

    SENTED by Her Majesty's Government to Captain Charles Lawrence, Master of the Barque Lily, of Windsor, N.S. In testimony of his generous services to the crew of the Barque Virgilia of South Shields in February 1874.

    To date, I haven't found any information on either ship, nor what event resulted in the presentation of a gold watch to a master seaman from Canada.

    If, by chance, you've been successful (since 2007) in tracing any other information regarding the SS Virgilia, I would appreciate it if you would be willing to share.

    Best regards,
    Susan Lawrence

    SS Scorpio
    Jan 2007
    Sharon Hodges
    I have a solid brass bell with the words SS Scorpio on it and am trying to find out any information I can regarding this bell.
    Would greatly appreciate any assistance you may be able to help with.


    Union Castle Passenger lists
    Jan 2007
    Frank Shaw
    Back in may or june 1948, I arrived from England (southampton) aboard a Union Castle ship which I think may be the Edinburgh Castle(I was only 2 months old) . How could I get my hands on a passenger manifesto to indeed ascertain that it was that ship which brought my mother Aileen Maud Shaw, my sister Barbara Heather Shaw and myself to Durban South Africa?
    Jan 2007
    Dronz Arigho
    Dear Sir,
    I wonder whether you would be able to assist me in researching the History of the following vessel registered in Durban . I have contacted the last known Owners "Unicorn Shipping" but regrettably my request for information was unanswered.

    Official Number 351024
    GRT 1765.75
    NRT 967.53
    IHP 1750
    Intl Callsign ZSNN

    The vessel was purchased I believe from Scandinavian Owners by Durban Lines sometime during 1960

    In late 1963 the Vessel was sold to another South African Company "African Coasters Pty" managed and owned by Grindrod and Gersigney. The name was then changed to ss BOUNDARY.

    The Master at the time Durban Lines owned the vessel was Captain WA Nichols (Known everywhere as Nick - remarkable man himself , his father was Master of a Clipper Ship running between the UK and Australia and Nick was born on one voyage from the UK to Australia) Captain Nichols was either the Durban Port Captain or Deputy before he retired and commenced working for Durban Lines sometime around the 1960/s

    What became of the ss BOUNDARY after 1963?

    Who were the Original Owners of the Vessel when she was built? I seem to recollect seeing at one time bed linen which was embroidered with the name of a Swedish/Danish Company beginning with L . I have tried to back trace to Scandinavia from the information , todate have met with no success.

    I was the Radio Officer on board from 1963 to 1965.and am researching the history of the various Ships that I served on during my time at sea and somehow I believe that the past history of the ss SHERWOOD must be very chequered especially during the 1939-1945 World War..

    Any information you may be able to provide (No matter how small) will be most appreciated

    Thanking you in anticipation .

    Dronz Arigho R/O ss SHERWOOD

    3 Feb 2009
    Jan Baay wrote:
    Dear Dronz(Paddy) Whilst surfing the net I came across your article ref.Sherwood. The time you were r/o,I was 3rd and later 2nd mate and Nick was master. We sailed together for more than a year to Mauritius and Reunion. I am living in Holland now and would like to hear from you.

    Regards Jan Baay

    Peter du Toit of the JMMC wrote in Jan 2007:

    Dear Dronz
    Perhaps the following summary history from "Unicorn - Navigating New Frontiers" by Brian Ingpen will assist you;
    (As you may know there were up to 6 Unicorn ships named Boundary )
    General Cargo Ship.
    Tonnage; 2 825 dwt, Length 93.3 metres, beam 12.7metres.
    1936 Built by Helsingors Jernskib-og Maskinbyggeri A/S Denmark, as "Laila" for J. Lauritzen, Denmark ( re L on bed linen ! )
    1940 Sailed to Chile when Germany invaded Denmark.
    1941 Taken over by Chilean Government; renamed Maude.
    1946 Returned to owners
    1957 Bought by Concord Line, Denmark; renamed Lilian Cord.
    1961 Bought by Durban Lines, Durban; renamed Sherwood.
    1962 Bought by African Coasters, Durban; renamed Boundary 2.
    1966 Sold to Seven Sea Transport, Panama; renamed Golden Adorer.
    1969 27 February, wrecked, Hsiangshan, Taiwan; scrapped in situ by Hsing Nan Engineering.
    It was interesting to know that you were Radio Officer on board Boundary 2. Thank you for the details you have added to the above. We always value the personal experience side for our records.
    Best Wishes
    Peter du Toit

    Sao Joao De Bescoinho
    Jan 2007
    Jeff Sandler
    I am looking for more information on the shipwreck near Ponta Da Oura off the Mozambique coast called Sao Joao De Bescoinho 1551.

    1 Dec 2009
    Vanessa Maitland wrote:
    Hi - the only info I have regarding this ship is the following- Galleon sailing from India to Lisbon, wrecked 20km off the St lucia Estuary.

    The remains apparently washed up on the beach and were found by the survivors of the Sao Bento in 1554. The captain was Lopo de Sousa. Vanessa Maitland

    Pilot Tenders
    Jan 2007
    Shaun Wissenden
    Hi I am looking for 4 photos of the following pilot tenders that my dad served on.
    Bembridge (1938) as built by Smith's Dock Co Ltd.
    Pelorus (1948) and Penlee (1948) as built by A & J Ilglis Ltd at Glasgow.
    Pathfinder (1954) as built by Philip & Son Ltd at Dartmouth.
    All of the pilot tenders sailed under the Trinity House flag.
    many thanks

    Shaun Wissenden

    Feb 2008
    Valerie Coomber
    hi - wonder if you can help, i see that you are searching for photos of various pilot tenders that your father served on, we too are looking for information regarding one of the boats, the penlee 1948, as my father was drowned off of the penlee and i am searching for any information. His name was thomas arthur hughes, if you have any info on the boat or any photos we would love to hear from you.
    kindest regards
    valerie coomber
    Photo of Penlee sent by Andrew Adams

    SS Kadie
    Jan 2007
    Andre Mellet
    Hi, I have a house at Infanta and I'm interested in the wrecks of the ships that can still be seen on the rocks.I'm led to believe that there were a number of steam ships that went up the breede as far as Malgas and that The SS Kadie was one of them that was wrecked in 1865. I have tried in vain to get more info about the ship .Please let me know where I can get what I need if you cannot help me . Thanx Andre'.
    Feb 2007
    Roy Anderson
    I have a house on the Breede River and I am looking for information relating to the SS Kadie.

    Roy Anderson

    March 2007
    Fides Barry
    Im ashamed to say that Im a Barry, born and brought up at Witsand and cant even give you much info. My dad was Alf Barry who owned a lot of real estate there. I am a direct descendent of the Barrys and the S.S. Kadie was one of our family ships.

    Possibly try
    BARRY AND NEPHEWS AND THE S. S. KADIE / Thomas, Beverly (comp) --
    Swellendam: Drostdy Museum, 1990.
    968.734 THO
    Copies:1 Book

    Best of luck
    I will be making a point of getting up to speed with my family history.
    Fides Barry

    July 2007
    Lizette Payne
    My name is Lizette Payne & I've seen your message on the net re the SS Kadie

    I do not know whether you speak Afrikaans, but you can find a book on the history of Malagas at the General Dealer ( the one near the Pontoon)

    The book's name is BAKEN VAN LIG. There you'll find info on the SS Kadie and other ships.

    You can also ask the owners of the General Dealer - Mr. & Mrs van As, they would be able to give your more info on the history.


    Lizette Payne

    Nov 2007
    Jan Langenhoven
    I am researching(since 2005)the history of Witsand and Port Beaufort and have a significant collection of historical material on the towns.
    The following is and exerpt from Barry & Nephews and the SS Kadie, a small booklet by Beverley Tomas, 1998, Drostdy Museum, Swellendam:
    “The Kadie was perhaps the Barrys' greatest gamble and their boldest act. The Kadie, a 158-ton screw steamer with sails, was built for Barry & Nephews in the shipyard of Archibald Denny on the Clyde in Scotland. She was equipped with berths for fifteen passengers and had all the modern conveniences. She left Scotland on 18 July 1859, with Captain Fowler at the helm, and arrived in Port Beaufort on 26 September. It is said that Captain Fowler was 'intimately acquainted with Cape coast navigation' and his regular route was to be between Cape Town and Port Beaufort and then up river to Malgas.
    In the past other ships had struggled up the Breede River to Malgas, but the Kadie was the first steamer in these parts and therefore not dependent on winds and tides to carry her across the bar of the river. The little vessel's promptitude and efficiency in conveying cargo was soon evident. A new route was introduced to Mossel Bay and Knysna, where the firm also had a store, and occasional trips to Algoa Bay were also undertaken.
    The Kadie traded on the south coast for six years and in that time made no fewer than 120 voyages, rounding Agulhas 240 times. The total value of the produce that she transported from Port Beaufort to Cape Town in the form of wool, sheep, aloes, and grain was estimated to be between £100 000 and £150 000. Apart from this regular freight carriage and passenger service, the Kadie once made a trip to Mauritius with a cargo of ostriches destined for Australia.
    Her reputation as 'the gallant little steamer of the south coast' came as a result of her involvement in several rescue operations. When the troopship Miles Barton was wrecked near Agulhas, the Kadie and Barry & Nephews' schooner, Everton, went to her assistance. On another occasion she towed the Claremont back to Cape Town to have a broken rudder replaced when she had run aground at Green Point. In 1865 the Kadie rescued the schooner Walter Glendenning from a perilous position near Hout Bay, and she often helped ships across the bar of the Breede River. Her most gallant dash was to carry a freight of coal to Simon's Town for the southern privateer, the Alabama, which was preparing to pursue a Yankee ship, the Vanderbilt.
    The Kadie also put Malgas on the map. This was all part of Joseph Barry's plan to bring his port nearer to the godown in Swellendam. On the east bank at Malgas the firm built a huge storehouse and behind it a shop, hotel and canteen. In 1859 the firm erected a Dutch Reformed Church and during the years that the Kadie called there, Malgas was a prospering village. With the loss of the Kadie, Malgas and Port Beaufort sunk into oblivion as swiftly as they had arisen.
    On Saturday 18 November 1865, the Kadie failed to arrive in Table Bay as expected. She had struck rock on the bar of the Breede River early Friday morning, and although she held together, there was no hope of saving her. The Cape Argus reported that 'the brave little Kadie ... has at last laid her bones on the South African shores.... We have been so accustomed to see the plucky little craft with her red cutwater come in and out of the bay, that it is difficult to believe that she will not appear again'. But the Kadie had come home to die and her remains are still on the rocks at the mouth of the Breede River, comforted only by the gentle lapping of the waves.”
    Exerpt from: Malcolm Turner. 1988. Shipwrecks and Salvage in South Africa ~1505 to the present. Struik: Cape Town:
    “Iron Screw steamer of 199 tons, built in 1859 by Denny, Dumbarton, owned by Barry Brothers, and commanded by Capt Fowler. Wrecked on the west bank while entering the Breede River on 17 November 1865. No lives were lost. She traded between Port Beaufort and Cape Town and other ports.”
    Lloyds Register of Shipping, 1856-66.
    Shipping Register, Cape Archives, C.C. 3/7/2/1.
    I would really appreciate more info on the Kadie, the Barrys and the history of the townships and personalities at the mouth of the Breede river.
    Jan Langenhoven

    Barry and Herold family tree information?

    June 2008
    Wendy Parris
    I have seen the entries about the SS Kadie and particularly the one from Fides Barry who said that he wanted to get up tp date on his family history.

    I have his family tree (113) pages. If he would like to have a copy he can get hold of me


    2 Apr 2012
    Nicola Wooding wrote:
    Hi Wendy,

    I am looking for family tree info on the *Herolds *(of Herold's Bay) and *Barrys *and was wondering if you could help me out.

    My grandmother's father was *Jack John Herold* (who married Mabel Sancroft Dillon,daughter of Gertrude Atherstone Dillon, who was the daughter of William Guybon Atherstone

    *Jack Herold'**s* mother was a Barry, one of the 13 children of James Barry, of Barrydale who was one of the nephews of Joseph Barry (of Barry & Nephews trading fame).

    Can you help me out please?

    Many thanks


    23 Jun 2013
    Michelle wrote:
    Hi Wendy Parris,
    I am trying to research our Barry family but am battling to get further than my husband's great great grandfather.
    He was Joseph Barry (born about 1858, from Port Beaufort) married in Grahamstown in 1880 to Katherine Nelson(born about 1861 from Uitenhage). They lived in Bloemfontein and had many children including Violet Mary Barry, John Henry Barry (my husband's great grandfather), Owen Lawrence Barry, James Barry and Garnet Bernard Barry.
    I have seen your name come up associated with many Barry family trees in South Africa and wondered if you knew how My Barry line fitted in. Some part of the family say they are a part of THE Barrys of Swellendam and some say they are not.

    Hakon Christiansen
    Dec 2006
    Steen Christiansen
    I would like to ask you, if you could help me with information about Mr Hakon Christiansen (1893-1960)former head of EAC in Copenhagen.
    He left Denmark in may 1940 and was travelling manager for the company during the five war years. He was also danish consul for South Africa.
    The conection to you came up with the freighter Olga Topic mentioned on your webside.
    Steen Christiansen
    Dec 2006
    Kåre Nordahl Lundby Garsow
    I am related to Simon Andreas Pettersen, he was 2`nd engineer on the Norwegian freighter Ingerfem from the Jacob Kjøde rederi in Bergen.

    They where hit by a torpedo from the German sub u631, the c.o. was Oberleutnant Jurgen Kruger.

    The search have been quite demanding, but i have managed to get as good as everything concerning the ship, sub, crew and photos from when it was put into active duty in Kiel.

    If anyone in Norway or Holland (Terkolei) needs information, then please let me know.

    April 2007
    Kåre Garsow
    I have managed in my research to find as good as everything concerning the ship S.S. Ingerfem from Jacob Kjøde in Bergen Norway.

    It was sunk by a torpedo from the German sub U 631 and the C.O. was Oberleutnant JÜRGEN KRÜGER born in Berlin 16-07-1918 and dead 17-10-1943.

    Now the only thing missing are a photo of the crew, single or group.

    Can anyone help me with this.

    U-boat wrecks in the Indian ocean
    Dec 2006
    Nelia Van der Westhuizen
    I am searching for two U-boat wrecks in the Indian ocean near the South African coast. Apparently they should be between Sodwana Bay and Mosambique.


    August 2007
    Fedde van den Bosch
    Beste Nelia,

    As jy iets van die Duitse duikbote wil weet gaan na Dit is uitstekend.

    Op ons kus het net 2 Duitse duikbote gesink nl. die U 179 in Oktober 1942 wes van Saldanhabaai en die UIT 22 in Maart 1944 Suid Wes van Agulhas. (Dit was 'n Italiaanse duikboot wat deur die Duitsers oorgeneem was).

    Die derde duikboot was die U197 net Suid van Madagaskar in Aug 1943, maar dit was nie in ons gebiedswater nie.

    Hartelike groete,
    Fedde van den Bosch.

    SS Steel Age
    Nov 2006
    Debra A. Davis
    I am interested in obtaining information about the SS Steel Age, upon which ship my uncle, Frank Smith Davis, was an oiler at the time it was sunk, on March 6, 1942. My father's brother Frank was lost when the ship was torpedoed.

    Debra A. Davis

    Nov 2006
    Neil Fairman
    Airlie vessel 75189 under Captain J.G.Knight
    For over 35 years I have been trying to confirm that my great, great, grandfather, Edward Coleman sailed on vessel 75189, the Airlie, as a merchant seaman, under Captain James Gibson Knight, between 1884 and 1888. To help support this, I inherited the family sea-chest with a painting of the ship on the inside lid and would very much like to authenticate it.

    I understand that the vessel was of significant importance in Australian Maritime history, helping to plot out Ashmore reef and is now the cause of some interest. I would appreciate it if anyone can help, especially with crew lists, muster rolls, ships logs etc from this period.

    S.S Triglav
    Nov 2006
    Marion Stewart
    I am trying to research any info on the survivors of this ship. My Uncle, Roderick Dewar was "lost at sea" after it was torpedoed, July 9th, 1942 by the u boat 66. I have learned that 19 survivors were questioned and then "put ashore at Gilbralter". My mother after several years of research was never able to get any more info then this. She had always hoped to contact any of the survivors for info on her brother, but was never given anything other then the original info. He also was on the "Prince Robert" in Sept 1940, when they captured the German ship "weser".

    Anyone knowing anything that you could forward or any tips at all on how to further explore this would be greatly appreciated!

    Thank you

    Nov 2006
    Kåre Nordahl Lundby Garsow
    Dear Marion.

    I have seen the advert on the German submarine U66.
    The only information that I can find for that on the date 09-07-1942 is here.
    U-66 departed under Friedrich Markworth from Lorient on 23rd Jun 1942 and returned to Lorient on 29th Sep 1942 after fourteen weeks on patrol.
    * On 9th Jul 1942 he sank the Yugoslavian 6,363 ton Triglav.
    * Please let me know, if that is the correct name on the ship where your relative where lost.

    Kåre Nordahl Lundby Garsow

    19 May 2010
    Dear Marion,

    My husbands's uncle was a marine officer (his name was BRANKO MARICIC) on the ss Triglav but until today we haven't found any info about what happened after ss Triglav was torpedoed.

    If you have any other info could you please contact me?

    Best regards

    Sandra Maricic

    17 Nov 2014
    Eric Wiberg wrote:
    Ms. Maricic can find a detailed essay about the loss of the ship TRIGLAV fr om which her relative was lost in the essay at

    Sincere regards
    Capt. Eric T. Wiberg, Esq.
    Norwalk CT USA

    Trawlers from Vlaardingen
    Nov 2006
    Leen van Bree
    I am looking for information about 3 former trawlers from Vlaardingen.

    The latest info I have are the following names."Portia" Houtbay Fishing Industries."Caroline" Caroline LTD Capetown."Southern Striker"Oceanpac Ltd Capetown.

    As member of the Museum in Vlaardingen we are looking forward hearing from you.

    Leen van Bree

    Paintings by Herbert Crane
    Nov 2006
    I am the grandson of an artist called Herbert Crane,who painted ships in the early 30S to 50s until he died in 1958.
    I have just moved house to France and found several water colours of my grandfathers,including a picture of the Newton Beech which was captured and sunk by the Graf Spey.
    I have listed below the name of the paintings below.
    Could you please tell me about these paintings as they are originals.
    Newton Beech, Ravnefjell (Oslo), M/V Kafiristan, Wilton ( stockholm), Erholm (bekgeh), Montevideo (Oslo), Skum (Denmark), Scandinavic (Finland), Hildegaard (mariehamn), Eirikishna (Leith), M/V winton ,Ashburton (London),a barque Loch Broom ( Glasgow )
    Looking foward to hearing from you, any information or help would be gratefully received
    Richard Carlowe
    6 Nov 2009
    Tony Maguire wrote:
    The attached photos was recently posted on the website It shows the vessel "SKUM" in some trouble on the Thames.

    Although the date cannot, as yet, be determined, I believe it to be some time in the 1950's. As it has the same name as the subject of one of your grandfather's works, I thought it may be of interest to you. Should you have received any other information regarding the history and more particularly, the fate of this ship, I would be grateful if you could share this with us.

    Tony Maguire

    There might be other references to this ship also on this page

    mv Boissevain
    Oct 2006
    Mr K.J.A.Bouma
    In view of building a model of the mv "Boissevain" , I am looking for photo's of the vessel as she was during her charter to the British Ministry of War Transport in the years 1942/1945 as a troopship . In this period she passed trough south african water more than ones .

    Kind regards,

    Mr K.J.A.Bouma

    Robben Island Ferries
    Sept 2006
    Katie Mooney
    Searching for any information on the boats that were used to transfer people from the mailnland to the Island. The three ferries I am interested in are the Dias, the Isie and the Susan Kruger.

    Any information ofn these vessels would be greatly appreciated.

    Jan 2008
    Jaco Brand
    Are you still looking for information on the 3 Ferries of Robben Island, namely the Dias, Susan Kruger and Issie? There was also a cargo ferry since 1947 called "Blouberg".

    I virtually grew up with them!

    Yours Sincerely Jaco Brand

    August 2006
    Harry Dutton
    I am looking for information (preferably a press report or something like it) on the wreck of the british Barque the Asphodel which happened around 15th October 1878. (dates reported in Lloyds List vary from 15th to 22nd Oct). The captain was Edward R Stone. I believe the ship was either blown from her moorings at East London and then onto the shore OR left East London and then was "wrecked on Cape Morgan" (I don't know the geography).

    Do you know of an available book or newspaper which might hold such information?

    Harry Dutton

    1 Dec 2009
    Vanessa Maitland wrote:
    The best source for this wreck is:
    Graham's Town Journal - 16 October 1878
    Lloyd's REgister of Shipping 1878-1879
    Shipping Register, Cape Archives, CC 3/7/2/3

    The brief info I have is as follows:
    British wooden barque, 305 tons, built 1862 by Hardie, Sunderland commanded by Capt. E.R. Stone. Ran ashore 48 km NE of East London, near Cape Morgan on 15 October 1878 when her cables parted at EL during a strong SW gale after a voyage from London with a general cargo. No lives lost. Vanessa Maitland

    Terje 6 + Factory Ship
    August 2006
    Doreen Horwood
    I have a complete set of 28 photographs of a whaling trip on the TERJE 6 whale catcher. The photographs belonged to my mother, they have belonged to my family for more than seventy years and I am interested in finding out more about them. I suspect the photographs must have been taken on an Antarctic trip because of the records of the ship calling into South Africa.

    The photographs include:
    · Terje 6 harpooning whales
    · 4/5 whales tied up to Terje 6
    · Dead whale with a penguin sitting on it
    · Photograph of unknown (to me) a whaling factory ship with a white band around the funnel hauling blue whales on.
    · Many pictures of Blue Whales being cut up and the blubber laid out with pictures of the crew on deck.
    · Pictures of the deck and the ropes and irons laid out
    · Sea ice
    · A burial at sea with a Swedish flag covering the coffin (I think because obviously the colours cannot be seen)
    · A sea biplane landing by the ship
    · The sea biplane being lifted onto the ship
    · A photograph of the pilots and some crew members
    · Sea biplane taking off from the ship
    · Other random photos of ships and ice
    On the back of the photographs the printing company was stamped Velox with number (some have the same number and 17 photos bearing the number 338 and the other 13 have the number now listed) 339, 338, 341, 342, 344, 345, 347, 845.

    If anyone has any information such as when, where and a year that these photographs were taken I would be very interested to know. From the biplane photographs and the dress of the pilots and crew they must have been taken in the 20/30s.


    Harvy W. Scott
    August 2006
    Charles Wampler
    My name is Charles Wampler and my father William G. Wampler was on watch at the stern of the Harvy W. Scott when it was torpedoed. My father past away 2 years ago at the age of 92, he told me about being in the Navy often. I can ask my other family members any questions that we might be able to help with. In the last 2 years I have tried to find out any thing I could about this convoy, and what kinds of ships were in it.

    Until later Charlie.

    Willem Barends
    August 2006
    Miðvágs Fornminnafelag
    We are a small museum in the Faroe Islands, north of Scotland.

    We ar searching for photographs from a whaling tour in the South Sea with the factory ship 'Willem Barends' of Amsterdam.

    There were 63 men from The Faroes onboard this ship. Right now we are studying this, collecting pictures and stories from the period. We have been told that there are several photographs from this trip in a museum in Cape Town and we hope it is in your museum. If this is it, we would like to ask you to contact us.

    We hope that you will be able to help us.

    Youres Sincerely
    Miðvágs Fornminnafelag
    v/ Johannes Dam Hansen
    FO-0370 Miðvág
    Faroe Island
    Via Denmark

    May 2008
    Odette McCartney
    My father was on the Willem Barends from about 1950 to 1964 If this period is of any interest I could scan some photos for you if you let me know what sort of thing you are interested in
    Odette McCartney

    Oct 2008
    Arne Bechmann
    Attaching a photograph of the "Willem Barendz" leaving Cape Town. My father was a whaling gunner with the WB for many years. Kind regards

    Arne Bechmann

    11 Sep 2014
    Lara Hall wrote:
    Good morning,
    My father left Holland when he was about 7 years old, so that would be around 1952. They immigrated to South Africa. They travelled on the Willem Barendzs. Opa made a beautiful carving using a whale tooth, which I was lucky enough to inherit. The inscription on the tooth says "Willem Barendzs".

    Could you tell me more about the whaler? Do you have any photos?

    Thank you so much for your time,
    Lara Hall (nee Taal)

    Oh, Oma and Opa were Maarten and Petronella Taal. They traveled with their two sons, Maarten and Willem.

    There might be other references to this ship also on this page

    Namibian coast wrecks
    Mike McDonald
    August 2006
    At present I am researching the history of the certain shipwrecks on the Namibian coast for a lodge in Swakopmund.
    Looking for any info and photos on the following ships: Mike McDonald

    Helge Bergendahl
    April 2007
    I am also interested in shipwrecks of the Namibian coast, and would appreciate any information.
    Helge Bergendahl

    Jill Mathiesen
    Jan 2007
    My husband Colin Mathiesen is the grandson of Ole Mathiesen, a Norwegian, and Captain of the Outeniqua when she went down off Walvis Bay in the early 1900's.

    Jill Mathiesen

    David Pike
    Jul 2007
  • Mossamedes: 1895 to 1914 See Photo
  • Montrose. A relatively well-preserved wreck is that of the Montrose, which stranded in June 1973 and today lies embedded on a sandy beach near Terrace Bay.
  • Eduard Bohlen. Refer to Arnold Kludas "Der Schiffen der Deutschen Afrika Linen". A freighter ran aground south of Conception Bay in 1909.
  • Otavi ran aground in Spencer Bay in 1945.
  • Sir Charles Elliott A rescue tug, the Sir Charles Elliott, ran onto the rocks before reaching the stranded ship Dunedin Star, losing two of its crew members who attempted to swim ashore. The subject of JH Marsh's book "The Skeleton Coast"
  • Dunedin Star: The subject of JH Marsh's book "The Skeleton Coast" . A British cargo vessel ran aground 80 km south of the Kunene River mouth on November 29, 1942.
  • Karimona North of Mowe Bay are the burnt remains of the fishing boat, Karimona, wrecked in September 1971.
  • MV Shaunee ran aground in Conception Bay in 1976.
  • Suiderkus Just north of Möwe Bay, washed up on a pebbly beach, is the hull of the Suiderkus, beached on her maiden voyage in 1976,
  • Benguela Eagle ran aground 25 km north of the Ugab River mouth in 1975.

  • Jaco Louw
    Nov 2007
    Here is details of the Montrose II which stranded near Terrace Bay in 1973.
    The Montrose II CDF 205 were build in 1963 by Louw & Halvorsen in Cape Town. She was 67.5 feet long and were powered by a Caterpillar.
    She was originally owned by Mr. R.Middlekop from Hout Bay and was used as a purse seiner. She fished for Van Riebeeck Canning in Hout Bay as well as the Ovenstone's factory, Columbine Canning in St.Helena Bay.
    In 1970 she was sold to Mr.W.H Hearn from Hermanus are were converted into a inshore trawler for catching Hake, Sole and Kingklip. Her area code also changed from the Hout Bay area code (CDF 205) to the Hermanus area code (C 145).
    During the late 60's and early 70's many south african fishing boats were fishing off the South West African coast line just behind the territorial 12 nautical mile boundary at that time. Thus the reason she stranded so far from her home port.

    Jaco Louw

    15 Jan 2014
    Christofer Heffermehl privat wrote:
    My father, Johan Christopher Støren Heffermehl, sailed KariMona from Norway to Cape Town in 1950, and now I should very much like to know what you know about it.

    Best Regards
    Christofer Heffermehl

    30 Jan 2014
    Joy Fisher wrote:
    My grandfather was prospecting for diamonds close to Conception Bay in Sept 1909 and I have his diary which documents the Eduard Bohlen grounding and I have 2 small faded sepia photographs of the ship in the surf. The photos were taken on 12th September 1909.
    If you are still interested I may be contacted by email.
    Joy Fisher (Durban)

    B W Nazer
    Vaughan Cullen
    August 2006
    Hi, I am following a relative , B W Nazer who was a mariner and have just found out he died in South Africa in 1881. He was a marine artist and has works in our National library.He has been lost for some time and wonder if he has any paintings or mention in your collection? We dont know what part of South Africa he was at but must be a port close to his trade but was known to be employed by p & o .

    regards Vaughan

    Marianne Bechhaus-Gerst
    August 2006
    I'm doing research (and writing a book) about a Tanzanian named Mahjub bin Adam Mohamed (also known as Bayume Mohamed Hussein) who came to Germany about 1930 and was killed 1944 at the Concentration Camp Sachsenhausen. In a document he is quoted as having been a steward on a ship named "Askari" in the 1920s.

    I was surprised to find a freighter of that name in the list of the collection.

    Do you have any more information on this ship?

    Thank you in advance for your held and greetings from Cologne

    Marianne Bechhaus-Gerst

    Isabel Herrera
    Oct 2007
    My name is Isabel Herrera and I´m a journalist of La Tercera newspaper, from Chile. I´m writing an article about Mahjub bin Adam Mohamed an I wanted to know if you could answer to me a few questions about him, because I know that you wrote a book about him.

    1. Did you know what happened to the family of Mahjub bin Adam Mohamed?
    2. What did you discover about the days that he passed in the concentration camp?
    3. Why did you chose that title for your book?
    4. Wich details you give about the persecution of black people under the Third Reich?

    Thank you very much for your answers.

    May 2008
    Hello Marianne:
    I am writing from Ohio, USA.
    In reference to Mahjub bin Adam Mohamed did he play the Duke of Wuertemburg's bodyguard in the propaganda movie (which is banned in Germany), Der Ewige Jude?
    Yours truly,

    Kron Prinsess van Deenemarken
    Jurgens Pieterse
    August 2006
    The Kron Prinsess van Deenemarken is a Danish ship which stranded near Mosselbaai, South Africa. Any information about this ship will be appreciated
    S.S. Barrier
    Jock Paul
    July 2006
    I sailed as 4th/3rd engineer on the S.S. Barrier in 1959/60. She was owned by African Coasters. She was German built in, I think, 1921. I have been unable to trace her history anywhere on the Internet. If anybody can give me information I would be most grateful. thanks in advance.


    July 2008
    Graham Lawrence
    I do have information on the Boundary, this being the first vessel in the African Coasters fleet of that name. I have vast records on all coasters that traded on the South African coast between the years 1850 to 1966. Having recently retired and relocated down the Natal south coast all my records are securely packed away. This now gives me the incentive to start unpacking and finding a home for my collection.
    My collection contains photographs, press cuttings, quotes from books and publications and good old "digging" research.

    Kindest regards
    Graham Lawrence

    SS Soemba
    Arnold Brott
    July 2006
    My mother, Rose Brott, has just passed away, aged 90. In going through her papers, I found scant details of my father's death. My father, Henry Brott, was the second cook on the SS Soemba, which went down in a North Atlantic storm in early 1941. I was aged 5 at the time, and my mother was so heartbroken that I could never get her to speak about it.

    I would appreciate if anyone could send me anything you might have on this tragedy, so that I could have peace of mind and closure.

    Arnold Brott

    June 2007
    Loss of ss soemba date : januari 5 th 1941 08:50 lt

    in response to your inquiry as follows :

    ss soemba
    the full company name is : stoomvaart maatschappij nederland .
    vessel was build in 1924
    speed 12 knots
    tonnage 6708 brt
    port of registry : amsterdam
    flag : dutch
    the archief of this company is kept at the "nationaal scheepvaart museum"at amsterdam ,the netherlands .
    photo's of the vessel can ordered from the museum . website : .
    i found two refences to the loss of the vessel , how ever both are in the dutch language .

    "geschiedenis van de nederlandse koopvaardij in de tweede wereld oorlog " , author : k.w.l.bezemer , elsevier / amsterdam 1987 page 444 . "varen in oorlogs tijd" , author : s.j. graaf van limburg stirum , boer jr / amsterdam 1947 page 73

    a short translation is as follows :
    the vessel was loaded at philadelphia with steel ingots and pig iron for the uk.manning the vessel proved difficult . she sail with a mixed bag of nationalities .the voyage went first to halifax . from there she sailed for the uk in convoy on the first of january 1942 . in the morning of the 5 th , in heavy weather , the vessel developed a list over port at about 08.30 lt .

    the order to abandon ship was given . the vessel was seen to sink at about 08.50 . the master "j.p.leguit"and 35 crewmembers went down with the ship .

    24 survivors where rescued by the swedisch vessel "rydboholm" and landed at halifax .

    will make a full translasion if and when required .

    kind regards , koos
    mr . k.j.a.bouma

    Feb 2008
    Have you ever had any replies to your query about ms Boissevain? If not, I have a black/white photograph in the book "Vergane bootglorie herleefd". You are probably aware the the Boissevain was one of three "sisters", the other two being the Ruys and the Tegelberg. The book referred to has one photograph of the Boissevain and one of the Ruys in "war colours". I notice the Boissevain had her topmasts shortened, Tegelberg not. If you are still interested I can scan copies and mail them to you. Regards, F.Kummer

    Lighthouse keepers
    Suzanne-Jo Leff Patterson
    July 2006
    I am currently researching information on my Great Grand Father, John Leff, who married Susana Johanna Henn, in Caledon on 18.5.1863 Her Great Grandfather, Michael Henn, from Herbergen, Saxony, Germany, arrived in the Cape in 1748 as a sailor for the Dutch East India Company.

    It is believed that John Leff was a lighthouse keeper at the Cape Agulhas Lighthouse, between 1863 and 1883, or certainly in the lighthouse service. In 1882 he signed a visitors book giving only Struis Baai as an address. . Although he is not listed in Williams's comprehensive lists of keepers, I believe that around the1870s and 1880s it appears to have been quite unsettled regarding the staff at the Agulhas Light. After 1910 and changing administrations, a lot of records and documents were lost and mislaid.

    I understand that there is mention of John Leff in one of Lawrence Green’s books, which I think may refer to John Leff as having been in the service. Unfortunately I do not know which book, despite having read through as many of my Lawrence Green collection as possible.

    I would like to know if John Leff was a Lighthousekeeper at Cape Agulhas or any Lighthouse, or in the Lighthouse service and any information on this or anything about John Leff will be greatly appreciated.

    Suzanne-Jo Leff Patterson.

    Heather MacAlister Jul 2006 wrote:
    Their are a number of records pertaining to the LEFF family as well as a John LEFF around 1867on - it seems that the family were around the Hermanus and Caledon area in the same period that you are looking.

    Heather MacAlister

    August 2007
    Wendy Louw My maiden name is Henn and I know my grand father came from Hermanus - Cecil Anthonie Christian D'Heil Henn

    Unfortunately he passed away, but his younger brother is still in Caledon


    Wendy Louw

    Barbara Haviside
    July 2006
    Doing research for my family tree and hope you can help me.

    William Sykes Haviside married a Sophia Rebecca Gore on the 4 April 1860 at St Lawrence, inThanet.
    I think they came out in 1865 on the " Monsoon" to South Africa - our South African forefathers did not keep any records.

    I would be most grateful for any information.

    Marie Snaith
    Sept 2006
    I found the above information that you had posted in July 2006. I have found that William and Sophia had at least one daughter who was named Sophia HAVISIDE. From the will of Elizabeth SNAITH proven in 1890, I also found that her married name was HODGKINS. At the time, Sophia was living in India.

    From our earlier correspondence of a few years ago, I believe you know that William's parents were Capt. Thomas HAVISIDE and Mary SNAITH. Mary SNAITH was the daughter of Westgarth SNAITH and Jane SIKES. William had a brother named Thomas Snaith HAVISIDE. One of Thomas' sons was named Percy Hugh HAVISIDE. Since we last spoke I have found that Percy died on 8 Dec 1906 from a gun shot to the head. His wife's name was Elizabeth. Percy is buried at Walcha Cemetery in New South Wales, Australia.

    Hope this added information is useful to you.

    Marie Snaith

    29 Aug 2010
    Peter Williams wrote:
    Marie Snaith: I'm trying to research the genealogy of Captain Thomas Haviside of the East India Company. I have two marriage notices for Captain Thomas Haviside. The first is from The Gentlemen's Magazine and Historical Chronicle, Vol 92, Part 2: Aug 16, 1822 at Hackney, Capt. Thomas Haviside, of the Hon. E.I. Company's service, to eldest dau. of late Wm. Snaith, Esq. The second is from the genealogy of Frederica Markham: Frederica, born 12 Sep 1798, married 24 Mar 1838, to Captain Haviside.

    The first notification sounds like the Thomas Haviside and Mary Snaith you described in your Sept. 2006 posting except you state that Mary Snaith was the daughter of Westgarth Snaith and Jane Sikes whereas the reference I have suggests her farther was William Snaith rather than Westgarth Snaith. Could you please help me with any other details?

    One other reason I believe these are the same people is because I have an old photograph of Thomas Snaith Haviside from my great grandmother's effects. The writing on the back of the photograph is inscribed "Thomas Snaith Haveside Son of Captain Haviside". An old torn and weather beaten note that accompanied the photograph says: "Thomas Snaith Haviside Esq. this Mothers portrait at death of his step mother Frederica Haviside". This suggests that Thomas Snaith Haviside was the brother of my great grandmother Fanny Maud Shore (Nee Haviside) who's father ( or possibly grandfather) was Captain Thomas Haviside. Also, you indicated that Thomas Snaith Haviside had a brother William. I do not have complete information on the parents or offspring of Captain Haviside. Can you help?

    Peter Williams

    Frances Pickering
    July 2006
    Could you help me by telling me anything about a lantern we bought at an auction

    Richard Irvine & Sons
    Aberdeen & Northshield 940
    Shipstore Merchants Lamp
    It has red and blue lights.

    Can you tell me age, value, history etc.
    Frances Pickering

    Southern Queen
    Jim Walters
    July 2006
    Southern Queen built as Indrawadi by Chas.Connell & Co 1902 Glasgow, 1915 sold to Blue Funnel Line, renamed Eurymedon.Then owned by Thor Thoresen of Tonsberg from 1922, lost in pack-ice 24/2/1928,South Orkney Islands. Would appreciate photo of her and any information with regard to ships papers,log-books crew-lists etc.

    Glenn McIntosh
    Oct 2006
    I have a gallery of images taken during the maiden voyage of the Southern Queen as a whaling factory ship in 1922-23 to the South Shetland Islands.
    The gallery of images is on my website concerning the auxiliary barquentine 'Sound of Jura' - which is still very much under construction.
    View the gallery here
    Glenn McIntosh

    Empire Tana
    Paul Whitla
    July 2006
    I wonder can you help me. I am a tour guide in Northern Ireland and have as part of my tour the ship Empire Tana, I know she was orginally called Carso and owned by the LLoyd Triestino line were she was scuttled off the coast of Italian Somaliland - Africa. I was wondering why she was scuttled in 1941?

    Paul Whitla

    Norwegian Bargue SEIER sunk 1910 Buffalo Bay??
    Arnold Watson
    July 2006
    I am the eldest surviving grandson of the Peder Larsen who was born in Svaneke, Bornholm on 10th January, 1861.
    His full name was Laurits Johannes Larsen, according to his birth certificate which I have a copy of.
    My Mom used to tell me that his name was Peter...or Peder.
    I assume that Peder was his nick there might be an error in the actual recording in the archives.

    I was born in Port Elizabeth in 1931. My grandfather, died in 1935 in Port Elizabeth.

    My deceased mother's maiden name was Jessie Larsen. My grandfather had five daughters, namely Jessie, Lizzy, Gracie, Susie, and Milrose (my aunt's) He had four sons, the youngest being Harold and the eldest was Jack and also Magnus and Laurits. (my uncles)

    All of my Aunts and Uncles are since deceased.

    My father and mother and my sister and brothers used to go to the Storms River Mouth to camp occasionally. We lived in Port Elizabeth and since my Aunt Susie lived right on the Main Road running thru the small Village of Storms River we used to visit quite often and enjoyed the beach at the Storms River Mouth.

    My Mom used to explain to me at that beach, saying that her Father, my grandfather Peder? Larsen's ship was sunk in a tremendous storm which drove his ship onto those rocky shore line's which you can see in the distance across the river mouth...looking East towards Mossel Bay.

    My mother also said that her father and his engineer were the only survivors and his crew did not make it thru the churning surf crashing onto the rocks in gale force winds. Apparently, after my grandfather and his engineer (I don't know the name) swam to shore and walked up the Storms River valley until they came across a small settlement of Lumber (woodcutters) families who put them up.

    Eventually, my grandfather married one of the local ladies and all of their children (my Aunts and Uncles) were born in Storms River, which nowadays is situated a few miles West, past the Storms River Bridge and on the South side of the Garden Highway.

    My grandfather worked as a supervisor at the Saw Lumber Mill and later as the only school teacher there. I can still remember the Stinkwood and Yellow wood furniture which was assembled there at the Saw Mill. and the sounds of the saws cutting the logs.

    I have been toying for a long time now to search for more information about my Grandfathers voyage which departed from Copenhagen...or Goole near Hull in England. I believe that it stopped at the Canary Islands for provisions etc. and must have also stopped along the West African Ports, Dakar and others.

    I would like to know more about the actual cargo carried and the ultimate destination..possibly up to Mombassa or Zanzibar.

    My Granfather was born in Bornholm, an Island in the Baltic Sea, and belonging to Denmark. I do have a copy of my grandfathers birth certificates. I remember seeing a picture of his boat taken in Copenhagen before he departed on his long African voyage. But that actual picture has been lost unfortunately. The boat had two or three masts and the name SEIER was painted on the stern and the front of the boat.

    My deseased sister used to visit the Larsen family in Bornholm and Copenhagen.

    I wonder whether for certain the Seier was actually sunk at Mossel Bay, Storms River or Buffalo Bay?..... since my family has always maintained that the actual shipwreck site was at the Storms River mouth on the East side. My Mother, Jessie Larsen, always waived across the river mouth to the rocks and said many times that the ship was wrecked there in amongst the rocks and she could see parts of the wooden hull still in amongst the rocks at low tide when she was younger. She must know since she lived at Storms River when she was young and the family went down to the mouth many times to swim at the beach and my grandfather to fish off of the rocks.

    Kindly forward me any information whatsoever readers might have gleaned over the years regarding the shipwreck of the Seier.

    Yours respectfully.

    Arnold Watson.

    a.. Seagull: Norwegian three-masted wooden schooner (373 tons), Capt. C. Christensen -- 11 March 1894, De Bakke, Mosselbaai (34° 10.30S, 22° 07.50E).
    a.. Seier: Norwegian wooden barque (491 tons), Peder Larsen -- 23 May 1910, Buffalo Bay.
    a.. Sir William Heathcote: British brig (149 tons), Capt. J. Morrison -- 15 April 1841, the Breede River.

    David Larsen - Salbu
    Nov 2006
    LARSEN FAMILY Jack, Magnus and Laurits
    Did you make contact with the LARSEN family?
    If not I can help.
    Kind regards,
    David Larsen - Salbu

    PS: Rev Larsen's son is Luaritz John Larsen and the Rev's grandson is David James Larsen - Rev's Grandfather arrived in South Africa in 1879 and was born on Bornholn Island Denmark

    Arnold Watson
    Dec 2006
    I found an article on the Internet in "Shipwrecks on the South African Coastline" where it mention's particulars about the sinking of the SEIER at Walkers Point.  I remember seeing old pictures which my Mom had of the actual boat which my Grandfather sailed on from GOOLE in England to South Africa. I do remember seeing the name on the stern of the boat  20 years ago in the old picture which has somehow gotten lost.

    The article on the Internet mentioned that the boat carried 1500 barrell's of Creosote and 45 tons of coal. It is possible that the Norwegian Barque Seier was powered by a auxialliary steam engine as well...although it had sails as well.

    The article states that Pedar Larsen was the owner or captain. My Mom told me that my Grandfather was the captain and at times she said that his name was Peter...something like Pedar...I quess.!  It is possible that he had a nickname of Pedar?

    Funnily enough, when I saw my 84 year old Uncle Albert Watson in Port Elizabeth 3 years ago, I asked him about the boat's sinking location, as my Mom always mentioned to me that the boat sank at the Storms River Mouth and that she had seen some of the wooden hull still remaining at the rocky shoreline at the lowest tide. She might have been mistaken though. It is possible that my Grandfather visited the actual sinking site at Buffelsbaai years later and took all his young children with him to view the site once more.

    Arnold Watson.

    Ocean Courier and Omar R. King
    Suzanne Nusbaum,USA
    July 2006
    I am the daughter of Omar R. King, who has been regarded as one of the most knowledgeable shipbuilders in the United States from the 1940s until his death in 1994.

    He began his shipbuilding career at age 14 at Bath Iron Works, Bath, Me., working summers. His father, Arthur W. King, was the general foreman there. Omar joked that he polished one of the bolts that went into the Ranger, the America’s Cup competition sloop, built in the spring of 1937.

    In 1941, at age 26, after graduating from the naval architecture school at the University of Michigan, where he got a masters’ degree, he became Hull Superintendent of the South Portland, Maine Shipyard. Two years later, he was promoted to shipyard manager. After the war, he returned to BIW as Assistant General Manager. He was shortly thereafter promoted to Shipyard Manager and in 1955 became Vice President and Works Manager.

    I am interested in any information that you may have about him or about the Ocean Courier, one of the ships he helped build.
    On Sept. 7, 1942, my mother, Virginia C. King, christened the Ocean Courier, Hull # 24 at the East Yard, Berth # 2 in South Portland, Me. The ship’s captain corresponded with her during the war. His name was R.S. ?? Preston?

    I would like to find the Captain, or his heirs as I have letters that he wrote to my mother during the war that I would like to share.

    Usambara and Nyassa
    Bradley Gibbert
    June 2006
    I am doing some research and am not having an easy time finding any information (ie. owner, routes, passenger list, etc.) on the following steamships and was wondering if you can help with any information or point me in the direction as to where I can find the information. The 2 ships are:

    Usambara: arrival in Cape Town Dec 1925
    Nyassa: arrival in Cape Town Feb 1926.

    Aug 2007
    Brenda Arrington Poss
    I am researching the life of Ms. Alice Fischer, an Austrian refugee who was among those fleeing Europe during WWII. Ms. Fischer's last point of residence, I believe, was Montauban although I am unsure where she boarded ship. I do know that she was among those taken to a concentration camp in North Africa, held for an extended period on the Nyassa, then eventually taken to the United States where she finally gained her citizenship and lived until her death in 2004.

    My intention is to publish a book about the life and works of Ms. Fischer.

    Brenda Arrington Poss

    Sep 2007
    steve richards
    I am looking for pictures of the interior of the Nyassa circa 1940.

    thank you

    steve Richards

    D'rom Afrika
    Maurice Shenker
    July 2006
    I happened to come across your most interesting website while searching for information on the "D'rom Afrika".

    During a recent trip to Israel, I went to Haifa to meet a Fisheries Advisor with whom I have been corresponding by email for the past 10 or so years. During the course of our conversation he mentioned that he was on the D'rom Afrika (I cannot remember in what capacity) during the years around the Declaration of the State of Israel (1948). He asked me to try to get more local information on the vessel and also who was responsible for getting it to Israel.

    I actually do have a connection to other whalers: In the late 1950's or early 60's my late father, Jacob Shenker, bought two ex-whalers tied up at Donkergat. I have forgotten their names, but I think they ended in "berg" (I could be wrong). The idea was to sail them to Cape Town and then re-engine and convert them into coasters or special purpose vessels. What I do remember is parking on a road near Donkergat and watching one of them steam out of the bay. We then continued the drive to Cape Town to await the vessel's arrival. We waited and waited.... but she never arrived - she broke down shortly after leaving and had to be towed back. That ended the project and they were cut up for scrap many years later.

    Maurice Shenker

    Norwegian Whaling activity off Plettenberg Bay
    Aldritt Maclean
    June 2006

    My interest is to learn more about my grandfather that was part of the Norwegian Whaling activity that took place in the 1900's. Their ships anchored of Plettenberg Bay in South Africa where the blubber of the whales was processed in big cast-iron pots on the beach. Temple Maclean (grandfather) and his brothers Eric and Peter was youngster, by what I could gather, was about 14 to 18 years of age. According to my father, my grandfather is born around 1894, probably in Scotland. I am desperately trying to find more information about my earlier family.

    My grandfather, Temple Maclean worked on a Norwegian Whaling ship in around 1910-1920. The ship landed at Plettenberg Bay in South Africa. On the beach there was these big cooking pots made of cast iron, in which the whale meat and fat was processed and carried back to the main ship anchored out at sea. My grandfather never went back and decided to marry in Plettenberg Bay, where he stayed for a number of years in a village with two or three of his brothers. The brothers were called Peter and Eric. There might have been a sister as well and maybe another brother. I would imagine that they were all born in Scotland. From information I could gather, I calculated my grandfather's birth year to be about 1894.

    Any form of help will be highly appreciated.

    Andrew McConville
    May 2006
    I am researching the ship Solglimt, sunk at Marion Island October 1908. John Marsh in his book No Pathway Here (Chapter 5 Sealers and survivors) has detailed the loss of the Solglimt, however I am trying to find the sources he used for this information. Unfortunately there are no sources listed in the online version ( and no Australian library holds this publication. I am wondering whether your museum has any information about the Solglimt or could advise the sources Mr Marsh used for his information on the ship.

    Andrew McConville

    Willem Eggerts
    Piet Jonker
    May 2006
    Hello, do you have any information about the Dutch iron barque Willem Eggerts. The ship was build in 1885 and sold to Rennie (London) in 1910.

    For about 15 years it was used as a coal hulk at port Natal and around 1935 beached outside Beira. (Mozambique) The wreck is still visible and is in the front of the Macuti lighthouse. Hope to hear from you, greetings .

    Piet Jonker The Netherlands

    April 2008
    Beverley Nelson

    Hello Pete
    I wonder if you ever had any response to your query about the ship Willem Eggerts? I'm afraid I can't give you the information you are seeking, but I am interested in the Macuti wrecks.
    The reason is that I used to go to Beira almost every year between 1962 and 1970 and watched the wreck become smaller as bits washed off.
    The photo from 1967 shows how the wreck looked then. The second photo shows the wreck after the front part washed away. Apparently there is almost nothing left of the original wreck - photo 3 was taken in 2005 (not by me).
    In your query you state that the old wreck is still visible - but I think that is not true any more.
    Yours sincerely
    Beverley Nelson in New Zealand.

    18 Apr 2013
    John Reid-Rowland wrote:
    Message for Piet Jonker: if he is still researching the Willem Eggerts, I have some plans for the ship, which I obtained from the National Maritime Museum at Greenwich many years ago. The plans are a rigging plan, a deck plan and a side elevation. If he does not have these plans, I can scan them for him.

    Sailing whaling ships off Australia
    Rod Dickson
    May 2006
    I am a maritime historian based in Perth, Western Australia and my research interest is the whalers of the south coast of New Holland, that is, the sailing whaling ships that visited this coast between 1800 and 1888 when the PLATINA, an American sailed for home.

    Of the more than 800 individual visits by more than 750 ships and barks I have ony come across one that is quoted as being registered at Cape Town.

    I am hoping that you can help with the identification of this vessel.

    The information I have is from two sources :- FREDERICK HUTH, Captain Toby, arrived in Flinders Bay, (around the corner from Cape Leeuwin) on the 23rd of April 1842 and remained in the bay whaling until the 12th of June 1842.

    The other reference comes from the log book of the American whaling bark, WILLIAM BAKER. This vessel arrived in Flinders Bay on the 20th of May 1842 and bay whaled until the 5th of June. The log book states :-
    In the bay are the MENTOR,Capt. Chester; JULIUS CAESAR,Capt. Gibson; MONTEZUMA, Capt. Baker and the IRIS, Capt. Douglass.

    If you can find any details of this vessel I would be most appreciative.

    Rod Dickson

    Pretoria Castle
    Richard Wood
    May 2006
    I am interested in finding out more information regarding the life of the Pretoria Castle ( later the SA oranje).

    Could you please forward me any information that you may have regarding when and where the vessel was built, as well as what became of her after she was renamed the SA oranje, and where she currently is ( i.e is she still in operation??, if not when and where was she disposed of etc) .

    In addition if you could please forward "any other information of interest" (i.e any major / particular instances or events that may have occured during any of her trips i would be most appreciative.

    Richard Wood

    Susan Pardew
    Robert Koch
    April 2006
    I am doing some research on the Susan Pardew .

    It was a British wooden teak bargue of 378 tons built in 1863 by Hardie, Sutherland.The ship was wrecked at Mossel Bay on 28 April 1872.Shipping Register,Cape Archives C.C. 3/7/2/2

    Things we would love to know about the boat are ;
    What colour it was?
    Any pictures of the ship.?
    What decorations where on the bow and aft of the ship?
    Was the hull a Clipper?
    Did it have cannons on board to protect the cargo?
    Anything that will help us build a replica model of the ship?
    The Sale of the shipwreck was advertised in the Mossel Bay Advertiser June 12th, 1872 Agents were Flemming and Mudie. Auctioneer- John Cairncross

    Ryan Hamilton
    April 2007
    I Am looking for some info & pictures of the Susan Pardew that sank in mosselbay

    Kind Regards

    Ryan Hamilton

    Sailed with Ernest Pugsley
    Ernest Pugsley
    Apr 2006
    Ernest Pugsley is looking for anyone who sailed with him during the 1940's, on the Elders/Fyfess, Banana shipping line, Ships: Reventazon, tortuguero, Cavina and Ariguani. Also on the Kaipaki, San Veronico or the schooner, Cambourne.

    Sydney Miller
    Apr 2006
    In 1928 my late Mother, formerly Fanny Rubik, immigrated to South Africa.

    Amongst her possessions we found a notebook with the name Usaramo written on the cover. I know that a vessel with this name sailed from Germany to Africa during the period from about 1920 to the late 1930's.

    I wonder whether you could tell me whether the Usaramo came to Cape Town during 1928 and if so what the date of the visit was.

    I am busy compiling a Family Genealogy and this information would be most useful.

    Sydney Miller.

    Terje 4
    S Booth
    Apr 2006
    Have surveyed your site looking for Terje 4 and cannot find reference to this vessel. You have listed many Terje vessels indicating that there were 11 in total but there is no Terje 4 I realise that the ones listed would have been in South African ports but why wasn't number 4 amongst them.

    My elderly uncle served on Terje 4 in 1940 and he has been talking about his experiences and we wondered what happened to this ship.

    S Booth

    Terje 3
    Alex de Vreught
    July 2007
    I am the owner of the former Terje 3 which was in use as an escort vessel during the second world war under the name Hms Bedlington.

    Terje has had several owners.We have her now twelve years and changed her name to:NARWAL

    alex de vreught

    SS Baykerran
    Gordon Simmonds
    Apr 2006
    This ship was lost off Nova Scotia on the 23rd Jan 1918. It was carrying members of the Royal Marine Light Infantry.

    The National Maritime Museum have just sent me this:- 3rd April 1918. Baykerran, British flag, 3755 tons. On voyage to New York (left 19th January 1918) carrying grain. Reported herself 'disabled' on January 23rd 1918 in latitude 41 14N, longitude 54 10W. Subsequently reported missing.

    My mothers Uncle drowned during this incident, and the family would like to know how and why.

    Thanks for any help

    Capt Tim Butten
    Oct 2007
    Yesterday I visited a small church in West Wales, just outside Aberaeron.
    There was a gravestone for Captain Thomas Thomas who died en-route to New York Jan 23 1918

    Regards Capt Tim Butten

    Lifeboat Victoria
    Dafanie Goldsmith
    Apr 2006
    I have a little rosette very old, and it is in an envelope that has written on it

    'This is a rosette from the bridle of one of the horses decorated for the parade for the Lifeboat Victoria'.

    This belonged to my grandfather Robert Bennett born 1880 in Cape Town. His father John Bennett was in charge of the horses on the Breakwater dock. Prince Albert was there aged 16, to turn the first sod for the dock on the 17th September 1860. Incidentally both my great grandfathers were involved in the building of the dock.

    I am writing this as I wish to find out about the 'lifeboat Victoria' I assume it was launched for Victoria's jubilee in 1887?

    Can you help me by any chance??


    Jeff Robinson
    June 2007
    There is a lifeboat called the "Victoria" in a maritime museum in Newcastle, Australia. It was used in Newcastle harbour around 1900. It waa built, I believe, in UK -- 23 feet long, unsinkable, 4(?) a side plus cox.

    Jeff Robinson

    Ship bombed after war ended
    John Devos
    Mar 2006
    looking for a ship that was bombed on the way home after the japanese war and list of people from holland that were killed

    Carlos de Eizaguirre
    Jorge Gilabert
    Mar 2006

    I'm very interesting in knowing all about the wreck of the Spanish Cía. Trasatlántica de Barcelona liner SS "Carlos de Eizaguirre". On 26.05.1917 she suffered the effects of an explosion, near hold number two at the starboar side, an she was sunk in less than 5 minutes 15 miles away Capetown near Robben Island. From the crew of 106 members and 39 passengers only survival 23 crewmembers and 2 passengers. It was one of the worst tragedies of the Spanish merchant marine.

    I would appreciate all the information, bibliography, photos, etc. about this matter that you can facilitate me, or that you can indicate me where I will find it.

    Awaiting for your news and thanfull for your attention

    Jorge Gilabert

    Oct 2008
    José Luis Gracia
    Dear Mr. Gilabert,

    I've seen on internet that you're looking for some infomation about the shipwreck of Carlos de Eizaguirre. Well, I'm the great grandson of a member of the crew. I've been investigating and I'll write you donw all I know:

    The ship covered the route between Barcelona and Manila. On saturday 26th may 1917 at 3:30h a marine mine exploted against the ship. Was a great mess and everyone knew that the ship was sunking definetly... I had the oppotunity to read a letter from a survivor and he explains that all the scenes on board were incredibly horrible ( he had no courage to explain some scenes...) There was not enough crew to put the life boats down, was a very bad weather night with high and violent waves that pushed the life boats against the ship. They built a mausoleum in the catholic cemetery of Cape Town in honour of the victims. The ship had a twin brother called Legazpi of Trasatlántica too.

    There is a book that I already bough about this shipwreck written by Julio Molina Font called Cadiz y el Vapor Carlos de Eizaguirre. It has more than 200 pages explaining the history and the shipwrek. It's written n spanish but I've seen that you have an spanish name, so...

    If you live there I will thank you so much if you tell me where can I get a picture of the mausoleum.

    Looking forward any mail,

    Regards from Spain

    José Luis Gracia

    Cachano IX

    Sharon O'Farrell
    Mar 2006
    I need info on the Reardon Smith Shipping line, in particular a ship called the TACOMA CITY. I am hoping to maybe get a picture of the ship for a friend as this seems to be the only ship he hasn't got a photo of those he served on. This would be in the 1930's. and 40's

    I have been told that the ship was once called the anglo indian or inchcastle.

    I have been searching through the internet and have discovered the name of the ship changed several times.

    Sharon O'Farrell

    Paul Dean
    Mar 2007
    Hi I've just come across your info on the Tacoma City. If you need information let me know and Ill see if Ican get more Info. I'm an ex Merchant Seaman and know some one who was in that Co.
    Regards Paul Dean

    20 Feb 2012
    Douglas Barry wrote:
    I know my father James Louis Barry (1909-1994) served on that ship in the late '20s/early 30s. He joined Reardon Smith as a cadet and served with them for 7 years before leaving to study for university back in Ireland. I know that there are photos somewhere. If you still want them, let me know and I'll try to track them down.

    Douglas Barry

    La Union/Indispensable Sailing ship arrivals in 1798
    John Black
    March 2006
    I am interested in information on sailing ship arrivals in 1798.

    An ancestor of mine, John Black, sailed a captured Spanish ship into Cape Town in 1798, and then left for Sydney on the Indispensable.

    The details are: Arrived on captured Spanish ship "La Union" on 14 April 1798
    Departed Simon's Bay on the South-Seaman, "Indispensable" approximately 8 June 1798.

    Any information that you have or could direct me to in Cape Town regarding these ships would be very helpful.

    Also, please advise where I can get information on original areas in Cape Town where ships such as these would have anchored or docked would be of interest too.

    Many thanks
    John Black

    Meth family
    Tina Sweetman
    Mar 2006
    Trying to discover history of meth family. Meth believed to have run coastal trips in 1800s on South African Natal coast.

    Surfing or waveriding in Sao Tome and Principe
    Debi Spindelman Handysides
    Mar 2006
    I am an intern at the Surfing Heritage Foundation in California, USA.
    I am researching maritime history in Africa, specifically in travels along the Central West coast of Africa.
    I am looking for captain's logs from the 17th century, hoping to find some reference to surfing or waveriding in Sao Tome and Principe.

    23 Feb 2006
    I am trying to find out more about this ship,as i believe my great uncle was a naval gunner on board at the time it sank after being attacked by U-69 on the 03-07-1941.
    I have the details of the attack from the german prospective,but does anyone know if the ROBERT L HOLT inflicted any damage to U-69?
    My great uncles name was Victor Horace Jones and i would really appreciate it if anybody could confirm he was on board or provide a crew list.
    Jan 2007
    George Dixon Hall
    I am searching for any information in regard to the SS. Robert L Holt.
    Sunk on the 4 July 1941 in the Atlantic, by a German U 69. My uncle George Dixon Hall, age 22 at the time he lost his life, was a naval gunner. R.A .

    I would particularly like to find out if there are any images of the SS Robert Holt. Which shipyard it was built in, and any information on the actual incident, The only data I have has been passed down to me by my father. The name of the ship and date of his young brothers death. The only other reference I have been able to find is his name on the Plymouth Naval Memorial.

    Any other information would be appreciated

    Mar 2007
    Colin Fraser
    My father (Also Colin) was Bos'n on that ship. During the war it was classed as a mystery ship and it wasn't until about 10 years ago at my new home in W. Australia that I found out about the actual sinking.

    I hadn't bothered too much in England as my widowed mother was still alive. It was in a book I obtained from the local library which told of the sinking - quite a shock to the system after all those years.

    I have photo-copied the pages and also have a copy of the memorial that was placed on the replacement Robert L Holt.

    I must admit that these at the moment may take some finding.

    Colin Fraser

    RMS Athens
    Julia Hogston
    Feb 2006
    I am contacting you in hopes in finding out more information on the crew and captian of the RMS Athens that was lost in the Gale of '65'.
    David Smith the Captain of the ship is a cousin to my second great grandmother. I have very little on her family, but she was raised in Davids family so I am hoping if I can find more information on David and his parents and what not that i might be able to fill in some missing information concerning my great grandmother.
    I already have the basics. The story of the sinking, the Athens physical information and ownership. Would there be a passenger list or any other documents that might give me any information on the men that were aboard the Athens on the 17th of March.
    Julia K. Hogston

    ss silverpalm
    carol ellison
    Feb 2006
    my uncle john robert topham was on a ship the ss silverpalm which was torpedoed on 9th june 1941 is there any way of proving he was actually on board he was in the british royal artillary maritime regiment

    many thanks
    carol ellison

    Michael Coker wrote:-
    August 2006
    I have come upon your appeal below on the JMMC website for information.

    I was a deck apprentice (cadet deck officer) with Silver Line from 1952 to 1956 and have over the past few years collected some information about what happened to the company's ships, and their crews, during WW2. Thus it was whilst googling for Silverpalm that I came across your entry and I hope that the following may be of some small help.

    I have in my possession a booklet produced by Silver Line in 1950 to mark their 25th anniversary and in it they reproduce the Company Roll of Honour. I am attaching this and you will see your uncle's name clearly listed as one of those (all on board) who was lost in the sinking of Silverpalm in June 1941.

    I also looked him on the CWGC website, and eventually found him with his Christian names reversed, as you can see:

    But this does confirm his date of death as 9th June 1941, the date eventually discovered from German naval records of the torpedoing of Silverpalm. You may already have a copy of his death certificate which may or may not show the name of the ship. I checked and his death is listed although under Army, whilst he appears on the RN War Memorial in Plymouth! Which reflects the particular role that these gunners had on the merchant ships they were appointed to.

    Of course I do not know the requirement you have for proof that your uncle was indeed on Silverpalm but I hope that this may help. If it is insufficient I can only suggest that you try the Registrar General of Shipping and Seamen to see if you can obtain a copy of the last Articles of Silverpalm, failing that, the Records Branch at the MoD.

    Finally, if you do not have but would like any further information about the loss of the ship, please let me know and I will tell you what I have.

    I wish you luck. Kind regards.

    Michael Coker

    Janice Cowan
    April 2007
    Hi I am trying to find out what happened to the boat my grandfather served on during ww2. I believe his boat was returning home when it was ordered to turn about. To my knowledge the ship was torpedoed. Some of the men were found dead several weeks later in a life raft. I wonder if you can help me or point me in the right direction

    Kind regards

    Janice Cowan

    20 Nov 2013
    Rocburn wrote:
    While searching for information on the MV Silverpalm, I came upon your response on the JMMC website.
    My father served as apprentice on the Silverpalm. Towards the end of his apprenticeship, he was put ashore for surgery. The ship sailed on and was sunk some 6 months later.
    He has always wanted to see the full ships complement listing to see who was lost. I have been told that I can obtain the last crew agreement from the National Archives but that will have to wait untill I am in London again.
    However, I see you mention a Silver Line Company Roll of Honour listing which you sent in reply to the other enquiry. Would you please send me a copy?
    Thank you

    Nova Scotia
    Clive Dunn
    Jan 2006
    I've been searching for information about a merchant ship that was sunk off the coast in South Africa called The" Nova Scotia" during WW2 or not long after.My grand dad and uncle were merchant seamen aboard.If u've got any info.could u please help me put this puzzle of together.....
    Thank you ..Clive Dunn

    Justin Fox in May 2006 wrote

    Dear Clive
    I wrote that piece on the Nova Scotia back in 1999 and I'm not sure if I still have any notes on the subject, but will go through my files and see. The Military History Museum in Joburg and the Naval Museum and Simon's Town may also have some leads?

    Audrey Portman in July 2006 wrote:
    I am trying to find some information on the sinking of the Nova Scotia off St Lucia. Did you ever manage to get more information on this?
    I would appreciate any help you can give.
    Regards Audrey

    August 2008
    Bruce Hunter
    Hi, for what it is worth, I am the son of one of the survivors of the Nova Scotia, that was sank by a German Sub. off the coast of Mozambique. I have a photo album with some pictures of the men when they were rescued. Should you need them, I will willingly send copies to you, and all the info about my Dad (Ted Hunter) who was 19 at the time.
    16 Jan 2009
    Thomas Beddy wrote:
    I am busy compiling a Beddy Family Tree. One of my father's brothers, Thomas Samuel Beddy, lost his life on the Nova Scotia. What ever information or photographs you might have would be greatly appreciated. I do have a photo of the Nova Scotia (attached) Regards Thomas Beddy
    6 Sep 2014
    Max Johnson wrote:
    Dear Mr. Marsh.

    I have been doing some internet searches about my Grandfather, and came across the publication South Africa and the War at Sea that was, I understand, written by your father.

    My Grandfather was one of five civilian passengers on the Nova Scotia, and was one of the many killed. He was Captain with Holts shipping line and was being invalided home to England as a civilian from Aden for reasons that we don't know. He was actually a Captain with Holts line, and it was the fifth time he'd been torpedoed in both wars! This incident is still an 'Official Secret' in the UK, but there is a lot of information available if you dig.

    Anyway - I just wanted to say thanks for the information I gleaned from your father's pamphlet which I found very interesting.

    Best Wishes.
    Max Johnson.
    Heysham, England.

    There might be other references to this ship also on this page

    Convoy DN21
    Adrian Rowe
    Jan 2006
    I would appreciate any assistance regarding the weather conditions, moon phase and sea conditions prevailing on 3 March 1943.
    The ships under escort were as follows:
    SS Carolinian unscathed
    SS Empire Mahseer torpedoed and sunk
    SS Harvey W Scott torpedoed and sunk
    SS Marietta E torpedoed and sunk
    SS Nirpura torpedoed and sunk
    SS Sheaf Crown torpedoed and damaged
    SS Tibia torpedoed and damaged

    Any help regarding Lloyds Register entries or the like will be appreciated. Obviously I already have a fair amount of info on the Nirpura.

    Mike Bisland
    June 2007
    Hi Adrian,
    I came across your request for information on convoy DN 21 which was destroyed on March 3rd 1943. My Father (Francis Bisland), was a stoker on the Marietta E when it was torpedoed almost simultaneously along with the Sheaf Crown around 3am by U 160.

    I have written a short booklet (around 35 pages) on the events which led up to that fatefeul night centering around the Marietta E. I have spent a long period contacting various museums, historical societies and individuals regarding the Marietta E and the destruction of Convoy DN 21, and while I have acquired a good deal of information the main thing that still eludes me is a photograph of the Marietta E, (she was launched in 1941 in Glasgow, and was effectively still on her maiden voyage when she was sunk in 1943).

    I also interviewed my Father on video several years ago before his death in 2001, and he mentions there being a slight swell, although he never mentioned whether there was any moonlight on that night....(although I would presume it should be easy to trace back through an Internet search for Phases of the moon for specific dates).

    The Captain of U-160, Jorg Lassen, had stalked the Mariette E and Sheaf Crown, after his earlier attack on the convoy, he eventually saw his oppurtunity and torpedoed both almost simultaneously, an exceptionally difficult task, that would have been made impossible if there was a significant swell.

    Can you help with any info on my quest for a photo of the Marietta E.

    Mike Bisland

    August 2007
    Adrian M Rowe
    I have been researching the story of Convoy DN 21 for some time and would be interested in more info about the SS Harvey W Scott which was part of the convoy in which the SS Nirpura was sailing when they were attacked by U160. My grandfather was lost at sea as a result.

    kind regards

    Adrian M Rowe

    Jan 2008
    Dorothy Beglin
    Dear Adrian,
    Can you give any information of the ship S.S. Marietta E , my cousin was killed on this ship which says he died on Thurs the 4th March 1943, any info would be apprieciated. He was an apprentice Samuel David Jenkins aged 18yrs.

    Where can I get a copy of Mike Bisland's booklet, I have been trying for some time to find information about the S.S. Marietta E. The other day I found my cousin,s name on the Naval Memorial at Tower Hill.
    Sincerely Dorothy. Yours Sincerely Dorothy Beglin

    Jan 2008
    Matt Sinclair
    Hello Mike,
    I just recently saw your posting on the internet, looking for information or a picture of the vessel Marietta E,in connection with your research.
    My late mother's eldest brother Jack Brown was killed on the vessel when it was torpedoed, and I have only recently become aware of the name of the ship, having just been given some family history details from her side of the family. (She had another brother killed the next year too while flying for the RAF over Belgium. Tough times!)
    I was wondering if you had been successful in finding a photograph??? I haven't been able to find much about the ship at all!
    Hope you don't mind me making contact and asking, but I would be interested in any other internet links to relevant info that I could have a look at. I see that the offending U-boat was eventually sunk off Spain (did I read that it was sunk by the Aussies?)
    Kind regards,
    Matt Sinclair
    New Zealand
    8 Dec 2011
    Adrian M Rowe
    Good evening I have just discovered the reply from Dorothy Beglin in response to my request for assistance in my research on Convoy DN 21. Would you be kind enough to forward this email to her in the hope that she is still using the same email address.

    I do have record of the death of Samuel David Jenkins of Birmingham on the Marietta E in the early hours of 4 March 1943 and his name appears in the "In Memoriam" section of the book which I am compiling.


    Adrian Rowe

    COS 23
    Peter Honiball
    Jan 2006
    Do you have any info on a WW2 South African Converted Whaler named "COS 23" ?
    Apparently it was converted into an anti-submarine ship, and sailed for the Mediterranean from Durban on 10th Feb 1941. It was sunk in Suda Bay on 19th May 1941.
    I am trying to get information on my late grandfather - Sub Lt. G.F. Kebble who, I am led to believe, served on her, before transferring to HMS Gloucester. He lost his life when Gloucester was sunk on 22 May 1941.

    Peter Honiball

    Glenn McIntosh
    Oct 2006
    There were a series of whalers with the COJ name - initials for Carl Ossian Johnson. Are you certain on the S in COS?
    Glenn McIntosh

    Sigurd Sivertsen
    Nov 2006
    I came across your question about "COS 23" as I was looking for some pictures from John H. Marsh. Maybe you have received answers to your question from other sources, but anyway you are looking for the wrong name.

    The correct name is "Kos XXIII" and she was a Norwegian whale-catcher belonging to Aktieselskapet Kosmos and registered in Sandefjord, Norway. She was scuttled by her British crew in Suda Bay on May 27th 1941.

    The Germans refloated her and she was put into service as German sub-chaser UJ-2104 "DARVIK" of 21. U-Bootsjagdflottille.

    After heavily damaged by allied warships she was again scuttled by her German crew in Bay of Stampalia on September 18th 1943.

    I found picture of your grandfather together with names of his parents and wife under http://

    Hope this is some help to you as I have been in the company all my life.

    Best regards Sigurd Sivertsen.

    12 May 2014
    Guy Ellis wrote:
    I am trying to get information on my late grandfather - Sub Lt. G.F. Kebble who, I am led to believe, served on her, before transferring to HMS Gloucester. He lost his life when Gloucester was sunk on 22 May 1941.

    I would really like it if Peter can contact me as I am researching all the HMS Gloucesters from 1654 and I am going to the reunion this weekend for the vessel on which his grandfather lost his life


    There might be other references to this ship also on this page

    Johann Cesar /Ingegard.
    Melody Jarrett-Baker
    Jan 2006
    I am desperately trying to find out information about a ship that was known as the Johann Cesar and then renames to the Ingegard. This ship brought German emigratns into South Africa. I know that the ship landed in Durban in 1936. Any information relating to ships, passenger lists, etc from that time would be greatly appreciated.
    Many thanks

    Jackie Green wrote
    August 2006
    I too am looking for information on the Johann Cesar later renamed the Ingegard.

    The attached is a collage of what I have managed to find on the Internet.

    Unfortunately I still have not been able to find a picture of this ship. Has anyone responded to you with a picture?

    My great, great grandfather, Michael Friedrich Peincke came out on this ship from Hamburg at the end of October 1858 and arrived in East London on 1 February 1859. I am putting together the family genealogy and am trying to find as much information as possible.

    Hope the attached is of some help.

    Kind regards Jackie Green

    Submarines supplied from shore
    Roy Lourens
    Oct 2005
    Did you get a photo of the Frigate NATAL? I believe my uncle Owen Randall in Cape Town served on it (PO Radio?) and I think it was absolutely unique in that it sunk the German U Boat on its maiden voyage while it was still on route to its acceptance trials!

    If you have a photo of Natal I'd appreciate a copy for my private family records if that is possible.

    I am trying to trace any confirmation of a U boat being seen or sunk off Witsand. I was walking on the beach of the Breede River about 1943 when we came across a beached and abandoned boat. My father said it had been supplying a U Boat and refused to allow me to look at it as it had belonged to a "traitor'. I was only 8 at the time and have dismissed that story as a legend, but I now gather there may be some truth in it after reading the book Breede River Revelations by Chris Mellish (1996, Mallard, CT). That conforms to what I saw at the time, even though he does not claim the story to be factual. It looks as if it might be true (my oupa lived at Witsand). Do you knowe of any official record of a U boat being sunk or sighted off the Breede river about 1943?

    Kind Regards, Roy Lourens (in Perth Australia)

    Roy Lourens
    Dec 2006
    I to cant find any information about a U Boat being sunk off the Breede river, but there is increasing local evidence at Witsands that fresh supplies were indeed ferried to a U Boat offshore the Breede river at that time, and as I may have told you, I saw the castaway and abandoned boat at Witsand which my father told me at the time had been used by a traitor to supply a U Boat. I am told some oldtime locals still recall the occasion and even the identity of the alleged German sympathiser concerned.

    The Mellish story about its sinking off the Breede River appears to be fiction, (though other parts of the Mellish story are factual). The U Boat concerned might be the last you mention, U-197 ( Kapt Robert Bartels) or one of its group operating off the coast of South Africa. This as you say was eventually sunk by 2 British Catalinas from Sqdn 259/C and 265/N on 20 August 1943 south of Madagascar.

    Fascinating. My Uncle was Radio Petty Officer Randall on the Frigate Natal, if I recall correctly.

    Much obliged, Roy Lourens

    martin combrinck
    Dec 2006
    Wrt your letter, I'm sorry but unfortunately I can not help you there with your story from St Sebastian Bay. Re: "I am trying to trace any confirmation of a U boat being seen or sunk off Witsand. I was walking on the beach of the Breede River about 1943 when we came across a beached and abandoned boat. My father said it had been supplying a U Boat and refused to allow me to look at it as it had belonged to a "traitor'. I was only 8 at the time and have dismissed that story as a legend, but I now gather there may be some truth in it after reading the book Breede River Revelations by Chris Mellish (1996, Mallard, CT). That conforms to what I saw at the time, even though he does not claim the story to be factual. It looks as if it might be true (my oupa lived at Witsand). Do you knowe of any official record of a U boat being sunk or sighted off the Breede river about 1943?"

    Something of a different story, my mother in law grew up and stayed in a small town in the Southern Cape called Napier not far from Bredasdorp, if you might know the area very well you'll know that Arniston, Struisbaai and Cape Ugulhas are about 25minutes drive from Bredasdorp.

    She told me that during the second world war, certain farmers in the area helped repair a damaged German U-boat which had technical difficulties with it's diesel electric motors.

    Do you perhaps know anything about this.

    Best Regards


    Dec 2007
    Martin van der Merwe
    Ek sien op die website (onder research) dat Roy Lourens in Des 2006 inligting gesoek het insake die duikboot by Infanta. Attach is 'n afskrif van bladsy 32 "The Outspan" September 17, 1943. Ek hoop dit is leesbaar. Groete Martin van der Merwe
    5 May 2010
    Phillip Monson wrote:
    Did you happen to find any pics of the HMSAS Natal?

    My grandfather served on the original crew in March of 1945.

    There are pics of my grandfather with some of his shipmates...maybe your Uncle Owen Randall?

    Kind regards,
    Phillip Monson

    29 Jun 2011
    Richard McGillivray wrote:
    Hi Phillip

    I came across your note looking for pics of HMSAS Natal. My grandfather Barry McLaren-Taylor was also on the Natal, and I have an 8x10 pic at home of the ship, that I've not seen anywhere on the web which he gave me when he was still alive. If you are interested in it I will scan it for you and email it.

    I'd be interested in any pictures you have that you are willing to share.

    I also found out that in 2006 some mixed gas divers in the UK dived the wreck of U-714 and found it nearly intact at 57 metres. I am going to try and track them down and see if they took any photos of it on the dive (very unlikely I suspect, given the pressures).

    With best wishes


    15 Aug 2011
    Angela and Richard wrote:
    Hi Roy

    If you would like to send me your email address I'll send you a photo of the Natal. My grandfather must have known yours because he was also a radio operator, his name was Barry Taylor - the pic I have is one he gave me.

    With best wishes


    There might be other references to this ship also on this page

    Edinburgh Castle
    J. Kruger
    Jan 2006
    I have acquired an 80cm vesion of the union ship "Edinburgh Castle". I need some fotos of the ship's deck layout as I want my to complete this model and I cannot find any deck layout plans and I would like the ship to be as accurate as possible.
    J. Kruger
    Richards Bay
    South Africa

    SS Southern Queen, Southern Breeze, Southern Maid, SS Barrowby
    Dec 2005
    I am researching a collection of photos i own, of a whaling expedition to South Georgia & the South Shetlands, which i think was in the 20's/30's.
    The expedition was from Sandefjord in Norway & there are photos of the SS Southern Queen, Southern Breeze, Southern Maid, SS Barrowby & others not named, all as whalers.
    I understand that the 'Southern' fleet was transfered to South African ownership after Lever Bros. & that these ships were used as minesweepers & the like during the 2nd world war.
    Any information would be usefull & i would be happy to scan & send copies, if these would be of use.

    John King wrote
    July 2006
    My father owned a wooden boat in Durban South Africa. Called the Southern Maid. When I was about 8 or 9 years old. Am 50 now. Therefore circa 1960.
    I believe it was aquired after the 2nd world war, during which it was used as a mine sweeper. My sisters could possibly remember more about it. They probably have photo's etc...
    I'm not sure that the boat the "Southern Maid" my father owned could have been used as a whaler seems too small etc... probably not the same boat.
    My father used the "Southern Maid" as a charted fishing vessel as well as for commercial fishing. We had a small cold storage and fish shop in Umbilo road Durban.

    Mike Doyle wrote
    May 2006
    I am interested in obtaining a photgraph of HMAS SOUTHERN MAID. In May 1941, she was, with HMS Grimsby, escorting the tanker SS Helka that was carrying petrol and water to the Allied forces besieged in Tobruk. The convoy came under sustained air attack off Tobruk. Both Grimsby and Helka were so badly damaged that they had to be abandoned. Southern Maid rescued the survivors and returned them to Alexandria. Among them was my late father, Patrick Doyle, a stoker on HMS Grimsby. I am currently putting together a history of his wartime experiences for my family and would dearly love to include a picture of the ship that rescued him.

    David Pike wrote
    Nov 2006
    I have available the following information which you may find helpful
    • a) Photo of Lt Com DA Hall
    • b) Photo of HMSAS Southern Maid Leaving Alexandria
    • c) Photo of the attack on the Ondina off Beirut
    • d) Photo of HMSAS Protea escort/consort to HMSAS Southern Maid.
    • e) A fair amount of textual information
    If you want them I can scan them and send them to you


    Marianne Markovic wrote
    May 2007
    I have just come across your ref on the web - the HMSAS Protea you mention - was it used to transport displaced people after the war to Australia??? I would like to know and am interested in finding a photograph if it is this particularly ship.

    Many thanks

    Marianne Markovic

    Thomas Hudson wrote
    July 2007
    I have been researching my family tree and know that my Great Uncle, a Moses Maughan Hudson was a crew member of the HMS Grimsby. He went down with the ship in May 1941 when it was attacked by enemy forces.

    I just read your post on the website and noticed that your late Father was a stoker on that ship. I believe my Great Uncle was also a stoker and by any chance didn't know if he might have known your Father. Obviously I cant check from my side of the family but did your Father keep a diary or mention my Great Uncle?

    I know it's a long shot but any news or info would be brilliant.

    Thomas Hudson

    July 2007
    Mike Doyle wrote

    My late father rarely, if ever, spoke about his wartime experiences. We know he survived at least one sinking (HMS Grimsby). His siblings believed that he was also torpedoed some time later in the Med. Unfortunately, the RN has mislaid his service record from the time of Grimsby’s loss until his discharge in July 1947, so it has not been possible to establish the truth, or otherwise, of this. I know he lost a lot of personal effects when the Grimsby went down, but from the few letters he left, I know the names of some of the ships her served in after 1941. All survived the war unscathed.

    As far as I know, my father did not keep a diary. I do have some of his photo albums covering his service in the RN although, unfortunately, none of the photos have captions. If you have a photo of your Great Uncle that you could send me, I could look through the albums to see if there are any similar looking men. Some years ago I made contact with another survivor, Donald Ing. He was also a Stoker. He said that Grimsby carried about 20 to 30 stokers whilst in the Med. He recalled that one of the stokers lost was a ‘Soapy’ Hudson, who had previously served on HMS Hood. Unfortunately, I have lost touch with Donald and assume that he has now passed away.

    I looked at the crew list on the HMS Hood Association web-site (HYPERLINK "", but did not find your Great Uncle listed there. They claim to have the names of around 8,000 of the 9,000 officers and men who served on her during her naval career so his absence does not mean that he did not serve on her. Have you applied to the RN Historical Branch for his service record ?

    I have spent quite some time putting together the story of Grimsby’s wartime exploits. At the time of her loss, your Great Uncle, like my father, was a Leading Stoker. Other than being listed amongst those killed during the attack, I haven’t found any other references to Moses Hudson. Grimsby lost eleven men, all ratings. Seven of them were stokers; another four stokers were badly injured, but survived. The stokers who were lost were stationed either in the engine room. When off duty, their action station positions were either in one of the fire and repair parties or in one of the ship’s two magazines. The two stokers stationed in the ship’s after magazine at the time of the attack, John Hickey and Benjamin Smallwood, were amongst those killed.

    I am currently revising the write-up of Grimsby’s loss I have prepared for the family. If you let me know your e-mail address, I will send a copy when I have finished the revision.

    Best Regards

    Mike Doyle

    Aug 2007
    Haldane Cunningham
    During World War 2 my father Leading Seaman Gunner Leslie Cunningham served on the HMSAS Southern Maid.

    I read the piece written in "Military History Journal - Vol 1 No3, by H K Kelly" and would like to find out more as this piece states that most of the war the ship was searching for submarines off SA coast but all of the photos that we have are taken in the Med.

    I have quite a few photos of the crew not to mention other interesting photo's.

    I would also like to know what happened to the craft after the end of the war as I heard that the ship was taken back into service down to the southern oceans.

    I would also like to get in contact with H K Kelly by e mail if this is possible.

    I am a Lt Cdr in the diving section in the SANDF and my two brothers are also navy divers and round the world sailors and this has made me interested in some history regarding this ship.

    Many thanks
    Haldane Cunningham

    Aug 2008
    Hi Mike - it could well be that Soapy Hudson is my Great Uncle - it seems funny that a stoker who perished was nicknamed Soapy Hudson and my Great Uncle was a stoker called Moses Hudson, could be coincidence but I'm unsure. I'll try and get a photo of him. I know there are some photo's because I've seen one of him in his service uniform that you probably could match up with some photo's you have. Hopefully there will be a match. I'll continue my research but want to wish you all the thanks for the info you have already given me.

    best regards,


    Dec 2007
    Alan Downing
    I was interested to see on the JMMC website that you have documentation relating to HMSAS Southern Maid. I should be most grateful if you could send me scans of any information or pictures you have about this ship, especially the action that led to the sinking of the Italian submarine Ondina.
    My godfather, Bernard Pickles, served on board the Southern Maid. I believe he was her gunnery officer when the Ondina was sunk and that he was mentioned in despatches.
    Yours sincerely,
    Alan Downing
    Jan 2008
    Martin L. Wear
    My grandfather was working on Southern Breeze in the late thirties when the boat was hired by the Royal Navy in UK in 1940. Cheynes_Beach_Whaling_Company_Whale_Chasers/default.asp
    Southern Breeze departed Gibraltar on May 7th in a convoy of 45 ships (Convoy HG 29) and reached Falmouth UK on May 15th 1940.
    I still have the naval identity card showing that my granddad was on Southern Breeze at this time, and also have his passport which show the stamps from Falmouth at May 15th 1940.
    I would be very happy to get hold of some old photos of Southern Breeze if you have some scans. I really would appreciate to see some, as my granddad was very close to me and I know that he spent many years on the whaler in the 1930's.
    Thank you in advance for your help !
    Yours sincerely,
    Martin L. Wear
    July 2008
    Shane McNamee
    I have a photo of the Southern Maid leaving Durban harbour post WW2, skippered by Jimmy McNamee. She was converted to a commercial fishing boat after the war. Later got sold (about 1956) to an organisation that used her as a ferry, they sank her after ramming the Quayside in Durban Harbour (about 1958). She was scrapped after that. I believe this is the same Southern Maid, she was also known as an airmen rescue vessel for the Royal Air force. She was 72 feet in length, twin 120Hp Gardner diesel’s and capable of a fair speed for her time.

    Vila Star,Tanea
    Mike Foster
    Dec 2005
    Researching the two Holmglen vessels, the earlier long-lived one built in 1928 and finally sinking in 1947 (being Argus, Holmglen, Vila Star and tutuba long the way) and the ill-starred Holmglen of 1956 that foundered in 1959.

    That information has neatly tied together two little stories in the error-riddled Shell history that I was working on.

    The first was a claim to have bunkered the Vila Star, the first oil-burner to visit the port of Tauranga, in 1953. It was made to look like a major piece of business, but of course whe was only a tiny and very old coaster and was a motor ship, not an oil burner.

    The second story relates to Shell's little Tanea, on the New Zealand coast from 1950 to 1964. In my rewritten version of the Shell history I have been able to include the fact that Tanea was in Oamaru on 24 November 1959, the day that Holmglen sailed for Timaru. As a storm was coming up, Tanea's sailing was postponed to next day. Late that evening the Holmglen May Day was sent and she foundered. Tanea was one of the searching vessels next day.

    Her radio officer, who wrote about the experience, managed to use emery paper on a crystal to achieve the right wave length to communicate with search planes overhead.

    Three years later Tanea was brought to a shuddering halt just of the Kaikoura Coast (north of Lyttelton). She was just about at the epicentre of a 4.5 earthquake. The same radio officer was thrown out of his bunk.

    Mike Foster

    Alistair Kerr wrote:
    July 2005

    I was 'surfing the net on shipping sites looking actually for info on SAR&H steam tugs. ( I lived in P.E. 1950-1954, working on the harbour as a Cargo Supervisor for the U-CMS Co.) when I saw your reference to the tanker Tanea. My uncle Capt. H.V..B. (Pat) Williams was her master for some years, mostly when I was in South Africa.When we came back to NZ in 1954, he offered me an uncertificated 3rd Mate's ob in her, but I didn't take it.
    Alistair Kerr

    Robert Kohl
    December 2005
    I found your website when iI searched for information about a ship called "Sorbyoen".

    The reason for my search is that I just bought a bell from this ship on a garage sale.

    Now my question is, that I want to have more technical and historical information about the "Sorbyoen". Do you have some knowlege about the ship?

    Akri Hill
    Andi Lee Davis
    December 2005
    I am currently restoring some old documents for my Grandfather and am interested about any information on a merchant trading vessel called "Akri Hill" which featured in the Cape Times Friday 1949.

    My Grandfather was aboard this vessel at the time it came into port for repairs.

    Any info would be appreciated

    6 Oct 2012
    I have only just scanned your fascinating website and was amazed to see the entry from Andi Lee Davis concerning the Akri Hill as far back as Dec.2005

    I was an Apprentice on the Stamford Hill when we were called to rescue the Akri Hill after she had experienced engine failure off Pemba Island. We towed her into Mombasa following a very exciting salvage operation.

    A report of the incedent is contained in a book I have recently self published which I entitled "The Trampship Apprentice 1947". If anyone (esp.Mr Davis) is interested I will gladly quote from my book!

    With best wishes

    Captain John Richardson
    Cape Town

    Forget Me Not
    Richard Stafford
    November 2005
    You inquired in another email about Hellfire Pedersen of the Puako - as far I as I know he was a US citizen with no connection to SA but , interestingly in Lawrence Green's Book "Almost forgotten Never Told' published in 1965 he mentions a Sam Petterson in Saldanha Bay restoring the wooden hulk of a ketch called Forget Me Not described as "a little ship with an adventurous record" - could it be that she was resurrected yet again?!

    Jack has also sent me copies of the pictures of Forget Me Not he purchased from you - would you happen to have any background on those pictures which I could include when I post them - even locations of the fishing boat harbour and dry dock and/or approximate dates would be most useful.


    CF Kayser
    Robin Stobbs
    November 2005
    I am currently building a 1:32 scale model of the PE harbour tug CF Kayser from Lobnitz plans and a number of photographs taken in the mid to late 60s.
    I would be most interested to hear from people who might also have detail photographs of this ship taken around that time and also from anyone who can send me an authentic history of her and her sister ship T Eriksen

    Many thanks, Robin Stobbs

    Alistair Kerr wrote in July 2005

    Get hold of a book called "A Century of South African Steam Tugs" by David Reynolds. I used to see her working when I lived in P.E., 1950-1954.
    As a matter of interest I was an A.B. in her near-sister the "J.D.White" on her delivery voyage to Durban in 1950.
    Alistair Kerr

    Dmitry Ershov
    October 2005
    I'm a naval history fan from Moscow, Russia. I'm looking for any materials of Lake-type steam-ships, built in the USA by American Shipbuilding Company in 1917-1919. Many ships of this type were bought by the USSR in 1929-1933 and serve in our country until early 1970s. My grandfather was the captain of such ship (named "Yakut" in Russia) in 1940-1945. My dream is to built a model of his steamer, but I need more photos and, first of all, plans of any Lake-type ship.
    Please, tell me, do you have anything of Lakes?
    Dmitry Ershov

    Carsten Kattau
    October 2005
    I am researching my family history and am looking for information about a whaler which was called "Wicking" or "Vickingen" or similar.
    In 1945 at the end of WWII my father’s family, who were farmers in the Elbing area in East Pussia, flew on a vessel this from the Russian army. The ship was leaving Gotenhaven to land the refugees to Copenhagen in Denmark.
    Please let me know if you have information or pictures about this vessel.
    Kind Regards Carsten Kattau

    MS Abbekerk/Abbekirk
    Peter Kik
    October 2005
    In januari 1942 the dutch freighter MS Abbekerk (also called Abbekirk) was in port in Durban to continue in convoy MD1 to Singapore. My father was engineer on this ship. Just before he died, 5 years ago, he wrote down all his memories about WOII and especially the voyage on the Abbekerk (which was sunk in the Atlantic in august 1942).

    I'm trying to get more information about this voyage to fill in the gaps in his memories. Especially picture's of the Abbekerk are rare as the ship was launched in 1939 and sunk in 1942. I was very surprised en excited to see on your site that there is a picture of the Abbekerk in Durban in 1942.

    yves beaujuge
    sep 2005
    I am an inhabitant of Saint-Nazaire and I exercise as profession harbour sailor. Since the age of my 12 years I navigate the entrance of the Loire and it is towards the age of 14 years that I began to ask questions on the wreck of Lancastria and it was not easy because the old sailors were not very communicative on this wreck, it is so at about the 1980's that I knew about it a little more on this disaster, maintaining I am 44 year old and I am a captain on the pilot boat to Saint-Nazaire.

    I write you sir because I wish to make an Internet site on the wreck of the lancastria, you go to say to me that there is many of it already and I answer you yes it's true, but my purpose is to diversify testimonies that is to put those of brave English soldiers and those of the nazairiens which carriedassistance to the castaways of Lancastria with the risks which they took because the plane German always machine-gunned them, so I come to seek you for possible documents concerning Lancastria and vessels which were there this day there such as: HMS CAMBRIDGESHIRE, HMS HAVELOCK, HMS HIGHLANDER, HMS PUNJABI, HMS VANOC, Oracle, Oriel window, Oronsay, John Holt, SS Wellington Star, Robert L Holt, City of Lancaster, Baharistan, Clan Ferguson, Floristan, Ulster Prince, Mobile City of, Cymbula, Fabian, Glenaffric,Ettric, Otranto, Glenlea, Alderpool, lady Of Man, Arandora Star, Holmside, HMS Berkeley, HMS Arethusa,HMS Galatea, HMS Calcutta, HMS Oracle,Dundrum Castle,David Livingstone, Starthaird,

    Watch to receive all my distinguished greetings

    M beaujuge Y.

    The Maori
    Sep 2005
    I live in Cape Town and for some time now I have been very interested in the final moments of some of the crew who perished on The Maori in 1909, off Duiker Point, Llandudno. I am particularly interested in the fate of one crew member, Gladman, who clung to the mast for two days before jumping into the sea to his death as he could no longer hold on.

    Do you have more information on this tragic incident (eye witness acounts, photographs, etc)? I have seen a photo somewhere where you can clearly see Gladman holding onto the foremast, spearated from his crew members in the stern by raging seas.


    jason Buys
    Aug 2005
    I have become very interested with the tale of the WARATAH and would like to know if there is anyone with more information regarding her last known position. There are a lot of unconfirmed last sightings from the crew of the CLAN MacINTYRE , the SS HARLOW , the liner GUELPH and the soldier Edward Joe Conquer. Can anyone give me more information regarding these last sightings.


    Marie McCulloch
    Nov 2005
    I was a volunteer of many tasks with the Australian Axeman's Hall of Fame at Latrobe, Tasmania, for the last 7 years. During which time I did correspond with Emlyn Brown.

    Unfortunately the A.A.H.F. Project has changed hands and in my opinion has changed direction regarding a lot of the history.

    I am still intrigued with the story of SS Waratah and the two professional axemen who lost their lives. They were on their way to England to do a demonstration chop for the King and Queen. Their relatives would still be in Tasmania. I do know of a man who still has an axe that belonged to one of the choppers.

    Do you know if there has been any more progress in your side of the world?

    Regards Marie McCullochOAM

    16 Jan 2009
    Wessex wrote:
    I am writing a book about Waratah and passengers and would love to know moreabout these axemen on way to King and Queen.? I have passenger lists and some of their occupations and embarkation ports.? There is a Mr Page Showman embarking at Melbourne - would he be one?? Names and the stories would be marvellous for the book thankyou so much.

    Feb 2008
    Annie Patullo
    Need information of the above Ship, The Waratah. My Great Grandfather sailed on her arriving in Melbourne may be via Hobart Tasmania around 1852. On searching I can find no record of this vessel
    It would also be great if I could get a photo of same.
    Have heard different stories that James & George Patullo were members of this ships crew, also came out unassisted,also were brought out here.

    Geoff Williams
    Aug 2005
    I am a volunteer with the Sydney Heritage Fleet, Australia, and have been asked by the editor of "Mariner", our in-house newsletter, for information relating to a vessel which was apparently in Cape Town at the same time as the Themistocles which was carrying Australian forces to Europe. This was in August 1916 and the other vessel was on its way to Australia.

    He understands that this vessel was the Austoliese or Austoliere. However, I have been unable to ascertain any such vessel's I would be most grateful if arrival in Australia soon after August 1916.

    As the information was in a war diary, I was also wondering if the name had been altered in case of the diary's coming into the hands of the enemy. Thus the vessel could have been the Oster... or whatever.

    I thought perhaps you might have such shipping details at your Museum and would be most grateful if you might be able to assist.

    Yours sincerely

    Geoff Williams

    July 2005
    I bought an orange lifeboat 5 meters long which has the name AIS GIANNIS from Piraeus on it. A previous name is visable with the name Mini Loom also Piraeus. See attached pictures.

    I am searching the internet to look at the history of this boat, but your site is the only site which contain this name.

    I am wondering if the boat mentioned on your site is the freigther where my lifeboat is from.

    Can you help me?

    Ragards, Michael

    A picture of the Watussi sinking taken by John Marsh is at Watussi

    B M Beach
    July 2005
    I wonder if you can tell me how to find out the names of the pilots aboard the Junkers -86 of 15 Squadron of the SAAF who alerted HMS Sussex to the presence of the WATUSSI in 1939.

    Many thanks

    B M Beach

    Louise Hollander
    dec 2006
    I have been trying to find out about the survivors from the Watussi that was scuttled on 2 December 1939.

    Apparently they were on their way back to Germany when The Royal Navy ship HMS Renown intercepted them.

    The Lady My Mother In law knew was one of the survivors Mrs Hohbach. (She Was pregnant at the time) so after she gave birth she named her daughter Tussi after part of the ships name. The Lady died 15 years ago but we were just interested to find out more about the story.

    So if you know of anything.


    Ingrid Simpson
    May 2007
    My father Gustav Albert Meyer was one of the crew on the Watussi. He was one of the men who where taken to the Wynberg Military camp, and then on to Baviaanspoort Internment camp near Pretoria, where he was kept for the duration of the war. During that time the German speaking girls in CT were asked to write to the men in the camp. My mother was of German origin and her family were still German speaking. She started a correspondence with my father which lasted the duration of the war. He was eventually released in January 1947, made his way to CT, stayed and married my mother, Hildegard, in July 1947. He was sent back to Germany for a year, after which time he came back to CT and my mother. He never went to Germany again. Myself and my 2 sisters were born in CT. My father died in December 1995.

    Interesting how the war changed the course of so many lives.

    Ingrid Simpson (nee Meyer)

    Sept 2007 Graham Haytread
    Could any one direct me to a site or publication. My wife's father Karl Heinz Gunther was head chef on the SS Watusssi, I would like to find out more about the history and sinking of this vwssel.

    Many thanks

    Graham Haytread

    Dec 2007 Joanne Rozen
    The ship was insured by Lloyds of London.
    The ship left from Hamburg around January 1939 and arrived in Cape Town around January 1939.
    The ship apparantly then went back to Germany, then came back to Cape Town and was skuttled by it's crew because they did not want to return to Germany again. So it's wreck should be somewhere off Cape Town.
    If you can find passenger lists the names you are looking for are Jacob Ivan Jacobsen, Jeanettte (Netty) Jacobsen, Rolf Jacobsen (age 7 or 8 years) and Dorit Jacobsen (age less than one year).
    Mar 2008 Roelof de Haan
    I have just heard that my wife's grandfather was an officer on the Watussi. He was one of the sailors that were interned at Baviaanskloof. He was Friedrich Hermann Voigt. I have just heard that my wife's grandfather was an officer on the Watussi. He was one of the sailors that were interned at Baviaanskloof. He was Friedrich Hermann Voigt.
    2 Sep 2012
    Roelof de Haan wrote:
    Your query regarding the crew members of the JU86 that spotted the Watussi off Cape Town prior to its sinking. Refers: - Battle of the Falkland Islands - South African Military History Society is an article written by one of the crew of the JU86.


    Roelof de Haan.

    There might be other references to this ship also on this page

    Stephanos Moscos
    July 2005
    Can you possibly help?
    I am trying to track down information with regard to my great grand father Stephanos Moscos who came to SA in the early 1900's from Cyprus apparently.
    He, I am told, owned a few fishing ships and apparently went down with one of them on his ship the Auro when it caught alight off the coast of Durban (???) in the early 1970's
    Does anyone have any info for me with regard to this ship so that I can try and back track the history of my great grandfather?
    Many thanks
    Rosemary Dixon-Smith July 2006 to Michelle Lang
    I can't help with the ship you mention, but wonder if you are aware that there is a deceased estate file for Stephen John MOSCOS held in Pietermaritzburg Archives?

    The documents in this file would undoubtedly take you several steps forward in your quest

    Michelle Hatton Oct 2006 to Michelle Lang
    hi there michelle

    i was looking on the internet and came across your email, i am michelle moscos, i have been told there is only a handfull of us in south africa, and iwould really like to connect all the dots, my dad is errol moscos son of johnathan moscos
    i know he had a brother by the name of george moscos,
    are you related to the moscos family
    michelle hatton
    nee moscos

    May 2007
    Olga Senekal
    Hi Rosemary
    I saw the mail to Michelle Lang, I am a daughter of Stephen John Moscos. He was my father and my mother was Catharina Johanna Venter. Can you tell me more about the file, where can I go and look at the file

    Olga Senekal (Moscos)

    Brig Alacrity and the K
    Lynda McHardy
    July 2005

    I am trying to find out all that I can about my 1st cousin, 6 times removed Captain John Findlay.
    I know that he sailed to South Africa on a brig named the Alacrity which he purchased from the proceeds from the sale of captured French vessels in the Napoleonic wars.
    1836 the Knysna, a brig captained by John Findlay, was chartered to carry supplies for the troops stationed at Fort Peddie. I believe the family had strong connections in Cape Town and his daughter Ann Bertram Findlay had Bertram House named after her.
    Any help in the way of photographs or additional information would be a real bonus for my research.
    Many thanks in anticipation.

    Charlotte Barlow Dec 2005 to Lynda
    Capt John Findlay arrived at the Cape of Good Hope with his family in 1821 . He was married to Margaret Ross from Cullen and they had three children viz Margaret, Ann Bertram and George.
    I am very interested in the family as I am the 6th generation.
    I would appreciate information on a Charlotte Findlay whom I assume was born in London in 1819 .
    She could have been the daughter of either Capt. John Findlay or that of a cousin Capt George Findlay who was married to Jane Dixon. They lived in London , somewhere near Ealing , as that is where all the Merchant ships sailed from and came to the Cape in 1835. Their children were Thomas Anthony, George James, Isabella, John Sinclair, Jane Elizabeth and Emily .

    Charlotte Barlow

    From: "Lynda McHardy to Charlotte Jan 2006
    I am the 1st cousin 6 times removed from Captain John Findlay. My grandmother was Jessie Ann Mair Findlay, born in Cullen in 1903. I live in Aberdeen but visit Cullen and Portknockie as often as I can, we still have relations there.
    Aug 2004 I took my Dad to visit the grave of Captain John and I attach a photo for you of his gravestone and the inscription. As you can see the inscription is not very clear and was difficult to photograph as the stone is horizontal. A lot of the information I have received from George Findlay in Dumfries and the photo I attach of Captain John comes courtesy of him, as do the photos of George and Harriet . One thing that has puzzled me is how someone of Captain John's standing came to die such a poor man and there was no mention of his son or daughters in his will, did they fall out? Can you confirm that Margaret Ross died in India and do you know where she is buried? I have tried all the resources available to me to try to find out this info without any success. She just seems to have disappeared from the records.
    I know from my research on the web that the Findlay's had some considerable standing in South Africa and would be thrilled to share information with you
    I believe that Wits University has a huge collection of Findlay letters/photos and correspondence, have you managed to access any of it? I did write to them asking for more information but unfortunately did not receive a reply. I would be thrilled to hear of the Findlay family in South Africa.
    I have not come across a Charlotte yet unfortunately, although I have a son, Horatio to George and Jane Dixon whom you don't mention. I will do some research at this end and see if I can find her for you. I knew that George resided in the London area but with the more specific information you have given me I maybe able to track them down for you.
    Sorry not to have too much information to give you just now, as you know we Scots like New Year and there is quite a bit of socialising going on just now but I will get on the case as soon as I can.
    George in Dumfries has remarked that my "tree" is incorrect in places so I am reluctant to pass it on to you until I can "re-check" the information but rest assured I will share it when I can. I cannot tell you how thrilled I am to have heard from you and thank you for taking the time to contact me and I look forward to hearing from you again.

    From Craig Galbraith on 31 Mar 2006
    Hi Lynda
    I came across your research requested. Just wondered if you know where to get hold of any journals or ships logs from the Alacrity - which sailed 18 Oct 1816 and arrived in Cape Town 18 Jan 1817 Capt. Findlay. I am doing research on Robert Moffat who sailed on her at the time. Thanks for your direction.
    Craig Galbraith
    Cape Town
    South Africa

    From Claire Campbell on 13 June 2006
    Hi Lynda

    My father is called George Findlay MacRobert and my brother is John Findlay MacRobert after Anne Barker Findlay( b. 1837) married John MacRobert in 1863 in South Africa

    The Kynsna Museum in Knysna, South Africa has a lot of information and displays about Captain John Findlay - may be worth contacting them.

    There is a book called the Findlay Letters published in the about the 1970s, but now out of print, which contains letters and pictures and history of the family that went to South Africa. My parents, who live in Zimbabwe, have a copy and maybe able to help if you are still interested.

    Claire Campbell

    From George Findlay on 19 July 2006
    Dear Lynda

    I am George Hudson Findlay a direct descendant of Capt John Findlay. I inherited the original oil painting of the Alacrtiy done by Huggins as well as the ship's table and model ship that were all on the Alacrity. It was my grandfather (also George Findlay) and grandmother who compiled the Findlay letters. I still have a few copies of it. It was also my grandfather who mysteriously bequeathed all the documents to Wits university. I however grew up seeing all the original letters in my grandparent's house in Pretoria. I also have the only pencil sketch of captain John as well as lovely portrait of his father and aunt on the hills of Cullen.

    Maybe you knew all of this, or Charlotte may have told you, but if you need more information I have quite a lot and will gladly share it with you.

    Kind regards

    Ram Tantaloor wrote Aug 2006

    Ok, I have no explanation of how I found this. Was just sitting at home after a day full of meetings in New York and was checking out a photoblog of Chennai, India which is where I am from and came across a picture of the tomb of Margaret the wife of John Findlay of the Ship Alacrity, who apprentely as per the photo blog is buried in Chennai, India.

    So, I naturally googled 'Captian John Findlay of Ship Alacrity and found your post on my second click mentioning that you are looking for some information about possibly the same Caption John Findlay and was pleasantly surprised.

    So, I had to share this with you :-). I should say..I love the Internet!

    Hope this helps. Let me if this is of any significance to you at all.

    The image of the tomb of Margaret Findlay:


    Aug 2007
    Tony Whitehorn
    We have a family member who is descended from George Prince (b. Fordham, England 1815, d. Escalante, Utah 1905). George and his young family allegedly came to South Africa aboard "The Alacrity". Their son, Francis Prince, was born in England in 1840 and their daughter, Mary Ann Prince, was born at Cape Colony, South Africa in 1843, so they must have arrived in South Africa between 1840 and 1843.

    This family joined the Mormons in South Africa and eventually settled in Utah, USA.

    Can anyone tell me whether The Alacrity was still sailing at this date or whether this is a different vessel of the same name from the one captained by John Findlay? -

    Tony Whitehorn

    Feb 2008
    Rinnah Mans
    From Rinnah Mans (born McDonald)
    I am trying to find the passenger list of the Alacrity captained by John Findlay which left Gravesend on 18 Oct 1816 to sail for South Africa and reached Cape Town on Jan 13, 1817. On board was Rev John Brownlee and I suspect, my Great-great-great grandfather, Thomas Peter McDonald. Both above-mentioned men married ladies from the same farm, Jonkersfontein, Swellendam SA. Family history has it that Thomas Peter McD traveled to SA with a brother or brother's son of his mother, Mary Brownlee.
    I am desperate to find the link between the Brownlees and McDonalds. Two of my daughters and their families are now Scots and living in Elgin and Stirling- (I have visited stunning Cullen)
    The passenger list will be another positive piece of the puzzle - perhaps you have found this from George Hudson Findlay, or perhaps you could put me in contact with him.
    Many thanks in anticipation.

    24 Jul 2009
    Craig Galbraith wrote:
    I have just completed some research on the Alacrity for a filmscript I am doing on Robert Moffat.  Here is the information I retrieved from the Cape Archive, here in Cape Town:

    Alacrity sailed from Torbay 26th October; Arrived 13th Janunary 1817.  It was due to set sail again from Cape Town on 17th February for Tristan de Cunta (Altantic Island - off Gough islands - South West of Cape Town) The Captain was John Findlay
    Cargo: Sundries from London; A large Mail for the Cape
    Passengers: Rev Celtol - native of the Cape( ?not clear); Rev John Spyker (Dutch); Rev J. Taylor and Missionaries and wives: Mr & Mrs Evans; Mr and Mrs Kitchingmn; Mr Moffat; Mr Langebach (Dutch); Mr Brownlee. 

    Also there a Mr Wolff of the Cape. Regards

     Craig Galbraith

    7 May 2010
    Ken Findlay wrote:

    Captain John Findlay of the Alacrity had a nephew George (often referred to as cousin George in the Findlay Letters and who married Jane Dixon and settled in Cape Town after captaining both the Alacrity and the Eliza Jane).

    Any ideas on who this George's father was (presumably a brother of Captain John) and who his mother was (presumably also from Cullen).

    Also very interested in seeing any information on the family tree prior to the emigration of George and John to South Africa.

    with thanks
    Ken Findlay
    Cape Town

    19 May 2012
    Sandra Tamburini wrote:
    I have relatives named George Findlay and Janet Wood who have a gravestone inscription in Cullen Scotland

    Sacred to the memory of GEORGE FINDLAY, late Seaman in Cullen, who departed this life 27th May, 1809, aged 77 years. This stone is erected by his affectionate spouse, JANET WOOD, as a mark of respect.

    JANET WOOD, above-named, died 5th April, 1813, aged 77 years; and in memory of their son, Captain JOHN FINDLAY, late of the Cape of Good Hope, who died at Cullen, 22nd March, 1851, aged 73 years.

    They were the parents also of Thomas Findlay (a ships carpenter in Cullen) who married Jane Grant, they had a son Andrew Findlay (Cullen) who married a Janet Scott (Jedburgh), they had a daughter Margaret Findlay and they migrated to Qld Australia in 1883. She married a John Bentley and they had my grandmother Marion Bentley in Sydney Australia. Margaret Findlay was a school headmistress in Sydney and could speak 8 languages?

    Any info on the families of George Findlay and Janet Woods children would be appreciated!

    I also have a will dated 1900 from another Andrew (FINLAY), son of Alexander FINLAY and Jean Finnie from Scotland a family who's children lived in Washington/New Zealand/Australia and Scotland, some of the children were well educated lawyers.

    A letter from this will states Andrews father Alexander was cousin to George Findlay (father of Captain John). This letter also refers to another George Findlay a Scotsman who wrote a history of Greece!! He lived with his uncle Kirkman FINLAY and cousins for a while and was educated in various boarding schools including England.

    If anyone is aware of this families and their connection with Captain John, could you please contact me? I have birth, death, marriage and census records!

    Kind Regards
    (Wollongong, NSW, Australia)

    There might be other references to this ship also on this page

    MS Castle Combe
    Jane Halliday May 2005

    Hello. I am hoping that you could help me. I live in a village in Wiltshire, called Castle Combe. There was a merchant ship once called the Castle Combe.

    I am one of the curator's of Castle Combe village museum. It is extrememly small and funded by charity donations by collection at the time of entrance and is staffed by volunteers. We have found out some information about the ship and is several changes of names, and we would really love to feature it in the museum. We so far, only have 1 postcard of the Castle Combe in dock in Jersey.

    I have found a small amount as follows:
    Built albion Shipyard Bristol 1936, operated by Ald Shipping.
    Sold 1952 to Plym Shipping of Plymouth renamed Alfred Plym.
    Sold 1958 to S Lucchi of Venice renamed Constanza.
    Sold 1960 to Mario Attanasio of Naples renamed Gianni Attanasio.
    Sold 1970 to Thalassia S.P.A. of Genoa retaining name.
    Broken up at Brindisi in 1970.
    Do you have any other information on these ships, or let me know somewhere I can go to find out more?
    Many thanks, and hope to hear from you soon

    Jane Halliday

    Graham Moore June 2005

    Dear Ms.Halliday,
    I've just acquired a photo of the coaster Alfred Plym, and on Googling around looking for details of her, I found your request for information on the Castle Combe, giving her basic history.
    I can add that the shipyard is normally referred to as Charles Hill & Sons and she was built as yard number 251 of 600 gross tons. However, I have a Lloyds register of shipping for 1959-60, and can find neither the name Constanza or Gianni Attanasio, so it's possible that she may have carried another name at this time. Not a great help I'm afraid , and my next register is from 1972.

    Graham Moore, Purmerend, Netherlands

    April 2008
    Stephen Carter
    Are you still interested in information on this? The "ALD" of ALD Shipping was my grandfather, Alfred Duggan. Please let me know if you would like more information.

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    Best regards,


    South African Lighthouses and shipwrecks
    Andrew Lynott May 2005

    I am collecting information on shipwrecks of southern africa, as I am writing a book on lighthouses and the wrecks that surround them.
    This book is intended for shipwreck enthusiasts and divers, and the general public.
    If you could help me in this regard or point me in the right direction, I would appreciate it very much.
    As you know, the information has to be accurate, and the reason I am saying this is because there is infomation on the net which is very inaccurate.
    Look forward to hearing from you.
    Andrew Lynott.

    P.S: I already have 2500 records of ships on our coastline, but some are sketchy to say the least.

    Sue-J Leff Patterson in July 2006 wrote:
    It is with great interest I note that you are writing a book on SA Lighthouses and Shipwrecks. Unfortunately I don't have any information for you at present that may interest you, as I am currently researching information on my Great Grand Father John Leff.

    It is believed that he was a lighthouse keeper at the Cape Agulhas Lighthouse, between 1863 and 1883, or certainly in the service. Although he is not listed in Williams's comprehensive lists of keepers, I believe that around the1870s and 80s it appears to have been quite unsettled regarding the staff at the Agulhas Light.

    I also believe that SAR & H did take ownership around 1909 and a lot of the records and files around these years were lost or misplaced. I understand that there is mention of John Leff in one of Lawrence Green’s books, which I think may refer to Leff as having been in the service. Unfortunately I have absolutely no idea which one, despite having read through as many of my Lawrence Green collection as possible.

    The following sentence comes from a letter received by my late Mother in 1971, after enquiries she made with the Genealogical Society of South Africa in 1971."There is no foundation for the assertion by Green that John Leff was a Sir John Leff"

    I don't know if you would be interested in any information I may uncover as I realise it will be pretty scrappy.

    Kind regards

    Sue-J Leff Patterson

    South African Charts
    Archie Green May 2005

    I have an old pilot chart with no date that shows a course plotted from South Africa across the Atlantic to the Carribean. Where S.Africa is now is the name Hottentots. My great grandfather was a sea captain and the chart was his. I'm trying to determine which of his ships made that trip and when he did it. He was primarily a captain of schooners alone the American coast. I have a list of the ships that he was captain of before he died in 1913.
    Do you have any suggestions as to how I should proceed?
    Thank you very much.

    Archie Green

    Bryan Hope May 2005

    I would be most grateful if you could in any way add to the following entry in the diary of my great grandfather, a sailmaker by the name of John Bryan from Caernarfon, Wales, which is dated November 6th 1892, when his ship Falkland called at Capetown en route from Barry, south Wales to Newcastle NSW, Australia:
    "Went to see the grave of my old friend Captain William Jones of my dear old ship Carnarvonshire. He is buried in Maitland Cemetry - planted some few trees on his grave"
    If you can supply any additional information by way of photographs or whatever, which could be included in an article about my great grandfather's voyages around the world, which is about to be published in the prestigious journal "Maritime Wales" in 2006, I would be more than grateful.

    Yours very sincerely,
    Bryan Hope

    John Dock
    Chris Ruddock May 2005

    My grandpa built a model of the John Dock tug. He used small squares of oil cans souldered together. He died in 1999 and now I want to finish off what he started but I have no reference material for what the tug looked like. All I need to do is paint it, I think. Please can you help me.


    Alistair Kerr wrote in July 2005

    Get hold of the book "A Century of South African Steam Tugs" by David Reynolds. I remember her working in P.E. when I lived there, 1950=54.
    Alistair Kerr

    Whaler Globe VI/HMS Maaloy
    June Naulls May 2005

    I wonder if you have any details of a Whaler Globe VI it was refitted as a minesweeper in 1941 it was renamed Hms Maaloy.

    John R Smith Nov 2006

    I understand you were searching for information regarding the HMS Maaloy. I assume from an article posted on the a BBC website that you might be related to James Henry Naulls who was one of the crew when it was sunk.

    My uncle John Robert Smith was also one of that crew, he came from the Shetland Islands, where I still live.

    All I have really been able to establish is that she was sunk by U-510 commanded by an Alfred Eick.

    Any other information would be very interesting.

    Regards, John R Smith
    Shetland Islands.

    Peter greaves Nov 2006

    The photo is of the Maalory at sea, Also have photos of Globe VI and Globe VII being built in 1935 at Moss.

    Let me no if i can help you


    April 2007
    Ibrahim Faizal

    I have also been looking for info on Maloy as my great Uncle( Maldivian Prime Minister, Hassan Fareed) was also on board Maloy when she was lost. She was traveling from Maldives to Ceylon.

    Can you confirm that she was sunk by a German U-Boat. According to my grandfather ( who took over the leadership) he received a telegram from CIC Admiral Layton that Maloy was lost and they think she was lost to a Jap sub. There is no confirmation that she was sunk by the Japs, but an assumption.

    In fact my grandfather had used Maloy extensively for traveling in The Maldives and he was supposed to go to Ceylon on that trip but my great uncle over ruled him.

    As I understand there was also onboard a special envoy of CIC a Flight Lt Walker who was also lost.

    Thank you

    Ibrahim Faizal

    SS Empire Light
    Malcolm Macdonald June 2005

    I have compiled a Who's Who of all those lost in WW2 from the Outer Hebdrides of Scotland. A total of eleven islanders (practically the entire deck crew) were from this vessel and lost on the Raider Pinguin in May 1941.

    SS Yarrowdale
    Mark Cormack Jan 2005

    I am researching into my Great grandfathers ship the SS Yarrowdale, built Sunderland, England. 1892
    In 1902 she was sold to C.N. Castriotti in Piraeus, Greece and renamed "Nicolaos Castriotis" in 1905 she became the "Hohenfelde" owned by D Fuhrmann, Nissle & Gunther Nachf, Hamburg, later Bremen.
    She was interned in the USA and became the USS Longbeach in 1917. I have a photo copy of a picture of the Hohenfelde and written on the side is 1921 Cape Recife.

    Would it be possible to ask you for any help you may be able to give as I am looking for any information, plans, photo's, etc on the ship or company. Any help would be gratefully appreciated.

    Mark Cormack

    JMMC wrote

    Hi Mark
    Thank you for your enquiry.
    Our notes regarding this ship state;
    Construction completed May 1898
    Tonnage; 5469 tons gross
    Dimensions; 418.0 Length, 54.0 Width, 20.1 Depth (in feet)
    Builders; Completed by Wigham Richardson & Co, Newcastle (Yard 338)
    Built as "Hohenfels"
    1919 Surrendered to Great Britain and managed for the Shipping Controller by T. Law & Co, Glasgow.
    1921 Sold to The British Africa Shipping & Coaling Co Ltd (Mitchell Cotts & Co, managers)(British) and renamed Cape Recife.
    1924 Transferred to The Sun Shipping Co Ltd, under same management.
    20.2.1929 Wrecked at Seal Point, Cape St. Francis, whilst on passage from Cape Town to Durban in ballast.
    We do not have Yarrowdale in our collection.
    Peter du Toit

    John Parks wrote

    Mark, I have a brass bell ? ship's bell ? with the inscription YARROWDALE....1892.....GLASCOW..... I obtained the bell from the Charleston Navy base where it resided in the hospital courtyard. It was mounted and overgrown with plantings. The hospital was being torn down, so I rescued the bell. Could it have been with the ship????
    John Parks

    Huguenot arrivals
    Mary Strick
    March 13, 2005
    Browsing away on the Internet, I was most interested to come across your site.

    Since it is particularly a maritime site, I wonder if you can answer a simple (at least I thought it was simple!) question. This is: how big were the ships which sailed to the Cape with the Huguenot settlers - how many passengers would have been carried - of the relatively small number of about 150 given as settlers, would that number include women and children as well?

    I would like to know these details to flesh out a children's story I am writing.

    Perhaps you may be interested to know that I remember John Marsh well from my childhood days in Cape Town. He was very well known, and I am glad to see that his doubtless extensive collection is safely looked after by you. I am not sure when I shall be visiting again, but will make a special point of calling at the Maritime Museum when I do. I used to ride the Penny Ferry often. And the sight of Union Castle liners in dock was one of those permanent sights, like Table Mountain - I couldn't believe it when the service was withdrawn, and the harbour still looks wrong without them. And of course I remember the wartime convoys, and the sight of the whole bay covered with ships.

    Yours in hope of having my question answered, and in nostalgia for memories stirred

    Mary Strick.

    P.S. Even if you can't help me, I hope somebody will have time to reply to me!

    Identifying a Stanchion
    Reg Fitzpatrick
    I was recently left an interesting item on the death of an elderly relative and I am trying to obtain some information on it. It is what I believe to be a roughly cast bronze Stanchion.

    All I know about it is that my relative told me he salvaged it from a very old shipwreck. I have no idea where that shipwreck was as he dived on wrecks all over the world and had many souvenirs from his diving exploits. I would really like to identify the item for certain and obtain any other information on it that I could.

    It is 37 inches (94 cm) long and its diameter varies from 1 inch (2.6 cm) to 1¼ inches (3.2 cm). It was either badly cast or the metal has been eaten away during its submergence under water. It weighs 3.420 Kg. I am attaching three photos of it to this e-mail and have placed a Metre Rule beside it.

    When found, the stanchion, if that is what it is, was in five pieces and these have been glued back together precisely.

    Reg Fitzpatrick

    HMSAS Southern Floe
    Nick Hewitt April 09, 2005

    The theme of the exhibition is Commonwealth Navies. We have sections dealing with the RAN, RNZN, RIN and RCN as well as the SANF, and we are also looking at some of the stories of Commonwealth men and women who served at sea with the Royal Navy and the Merchant Navy. As I'm sure you know, 'Southern Floe' was the most significant loss of a South African warship (although I believe South African casualties were higher on board the RN cruiser Neptune) and although the IWM has some 5 million photographs we do not have her! We do have some other interesting images of South African trawlers in the Med, but none are 'Southerns'. However we have a fabulous photo of the men of the 22nd parading before leaving for the Med, which we will definitely be using.

    I was, however, lucky enough to find the frigate 'Natal' which shot to fame by sinking a U-boat on her maiden voyage in 1945.

    I will send you some photographs of the section when we have installed - we are due to open on 27 July.

    Nick Hewitt MA,Interpretation Officer,HMS BELFAST

    November 19, 2004

    Christopher Robert

    My Uncle, Charles Smith died on the Lylepark when she was attacked by the German raider Michel on 11th June 1942 bound from New York to Cape Town.

    What started as a family curiosity has become an absorbing research project for another Uncle and I. As an ex- Merchant Navy (UK) Officer (2nd Mate) I have a clear understanding of the history involved and as a result, our research has really blossomed.

    In your email, you ask whether we are writing a history of the ship. I suppose the answer in a round about way is yes although our interest is more focused on our relative. We have interviewed a remaining survivor, we have copies of the German Captains War Log Report detailing the sinking, we have obtained other photos of the Lylepark and we have copies of the articles and Ships Log kept at the PRO in Kew.

    Our thoughts were, that on completion of our project, we should write it up with the purpose of making it available for any interested party Certainly, if you have any advice or would be interested in the material, we would gladly share it on completion of the work.

    Wolf Richthofen wrote Mar 2006
    Today I found your entry on the Lylepark sinking.

    I am researching material for a book on the war in the Indian Ocean./S.Atlantic and commerce raiders such as the Michel.

    Was the sinking of the Lylepark unusual? By that I mean was there anything onboard the Lylepark of significant value to the Germans? (Unusual materals, official coded documents & code books, etc) and do you know if the Lylepark had misfortune to meet with the Michel or were her sailing plans/route relayed to the Michel by someone ashore?

    Christopher Robert
    April 2006
    Thanks for your note regarding the sinking of the Lylepark and the questions you raised.

    I cannot be definitive in relation to the sinking of the Lylepark as there is very little documentry evidence concerning the sinking, but on the basis of interviews with both German and English crew members involved, I think my views are pretty accurate.

    1. Special Cargo of the the Lylepark.
    Most refrences to the ship's cargo refer to military stores picked up in New York,It is alleged that flour was stored in the forehold and the German sinking refers to a variety of "war stores" including aircraft fuel stored in drums. There is no mention of any special cargo but a curious story is that the ships holds were sealed before leaving New York. This would be highly unusual, especially if the cargo shifted. I believe the chances of a valuable cargo being transferred in a sole merchantman with a very slow speed (9 Knots) to be extremely rare.

    2. Tip off or unlucky?
    Von Ruckteschell was famed for his ability to evade Allied warships although he nearly became a victim to the Alcantara a few days before the Lylepark. His route on the days before the Lylepark suggest a plan to cut the Great Circle route between North America and the Caribbean to the Cape.
    Although there are definitive accounts of Germans being arrested for espionage activities in South Africa I think the chances of a tip off are extremely rare as his departure was from New York and the Captain wrote in his sinking report that he had been under the direct control of the Admiralty and had course changes imposed. VR went further East after the George Clymer as he probably thought the Allies would never search for him closer to the African Coast.

    I hope this is helpful.

    Christopher Robert Smith

    May 2007
    Kirk Goodman

    My grandfather, James Henry Goodman, was on this ship at the time of the sinking and I'd like to know more about the incident.


    August 10, 2004 Donald Orbin

    Good day

    My name is Donald Orbin and I am trying to track down some information regarding my grandfather (Benjamin Orbin) who I believe died in the 1920's [possibly in the USA]

    I see you have reference to a PEMBA freighter 533/1910 on your website and was wondering how I could go about finding out some details regarding the crew. I would like to know if there are any records regarding my grandfather; identity numbers, date of births etc.

    We know very little about Ben Orbin other than the following:
    1. In about 1918/1919 he was Chief Officer of the SS Pemba - which plied between Cape Town and Daressalaam
    2. He was of ill health due to exposure when his USA battleship was torpedoed during the war (be fore he went to the Pemba) He was qualified to serve as a Captain but failed due to slightly deficient eyesight.
    3. He returned to the USA in an attempt to obtain compensation from the US government (for his ill health). This must have been around 1924 (the year my father was born - in South Africa) as Ben never saw my father. Soon after that, he died of dropsy in a Seaman's institute in the USA (possibly somewhere in Baltimore)

    Any assistance or leads would be greatly appreciated.

    Best regards
    Donald Orbin

    Submarine Engine,O'Kiep,South Africa
    August 10, 2004 Danie Pienaar

    Submarine engineRecently we undertook a trip along the coast from Koinaas to Kleinzee to see some wrecks.

    I saw this submarine engine at O'Kiep, where it has served as the town's generator for many years. Apparently the submarine ran aground near Kleinzee during the war and the engine was transported by oxwagon to O'Kiep.

    Could you please tell me more about this incident and where the wreck may still be located?

    Many thanks

    Danie Pienaar

    Fedde van den Bosch wrote
    Jan 2006
    Hallo Danie Pienaar,
    Na die beste van my wete is daar net twee Duitse duikbote wat op ons kus gesink het nl. U-179 op 8 Okt 1942, wes van Saldanhabaai en die U-197 wat op 20 Aug 1943 oos van Durban gesink het.
    Daar is geen ander vermelding van enige duikboot wat op ons kus gestrand het nie.
    Is jy seker dat dit van 'n duikboot afkomstig is ? Dit lyk vir my maar 'n bietjie groot om op 'n ossewa te pas of het hulle hom eers ge- "strip" en toe vervoer ?
    As jy nog enige info kry laat my ook asseblief weet, want ek is besig om 'n CD te maak met al die wrakke om ons kus. Tot op datum het ek al oor die 2500.
    Vriendelike groete,
    Fedde van den Bosch

    Guy Ellis wrote in Aug 2005
    Re your submarine engine - I saw your mail and made some enquiries and received this response from someone I know who has done extensive research on the U boats here off SA

    I had heard of the ship's engine at O'Kiep quite some time ago and as far as I remember this engine does not come from a U-Boat but from one of the freighters that came to grief at this stretch of the coast. In the photo it looks larger than a U-Boat engine. It could have been a victim of a natural calamity or from a U-Boat torpedo. The "Piratiny"was torpedoed in 1943 (no other date given) somewhere between Hondeklip Bay and Kleinzee close to the coast. Two other ships, the "Luna" and the "Aristea"were wrecked in 1945 after WW II (no other date given) not far from Kleinzee but quite a few miles off the coast. Perhaps the engine came from one of these. I have no reports of an U-Boat having been sunk anywhere along this coast. It must have been quite a feat to rermove the engine and then transport it to O'Kiep.

    Of the U-Boats in service during WW II, twenty were lost in unknown locations and never found. As far as official sources in Germany are concerned the only U-Boat lost in SA waters is one close to Dassen Island, one south of Madagascar and one some 600 miles south of Cape Point.

    Best regards Guy Ellis

    Fedde van den Bosch wrote on 28 Jan 2006
    Hallo Danie Pienaar,
    Na die beste van my wete is daar net twee Duitse duikbote wat op ons kus gesink het nl. U-179 op 8 Okt 1942, wes van Saldanhabaai en die U-197 wat op 20 Aug 1943 oos van Durban gesink het.
    Daar is geen ander vermelding van enige duikboot wat op ons kus gestrand het nie.
    Is jy seker dat dit van 'n duikboot afkomstig is ? Dit lyk vir my maar 'n bietjie groot om op 'n ossewa te pas of het hulle hom eers ge- "strip" en toe vervoer ?
    As jy nog enige info kry laat my ook asseblief weet, want ek is besig om 'n CD te maak met al die wrakke om ons kus. Tot op datum het ek al oor die 2500.
    Vriendelike groete,
    Fedde van den Bosch

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