british Elder Dempster Lines Ltd. - African Steamship Co. MV Abosso (II) (+1942)
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  Details  
 
general
nationality british
purpose transport
type ocean liner
propulsion motor vessel (diesel)
date built 1935
is nickname no
status
unknown
details
weight (tons) 11330  grt
dimensions 139.3 x 19.8 x 9.75 m
material steel
engine 2x diesel engine, twin screws
power 7200  b.h.p.
speed 15  knots
about the loss
cause lost torpedo
date lost 29/10/1942  [dd/mm/yyyy]
casualties  max.362rank: 305
about people
builder
Cammell Laird & Co., Birkenhead
owner
Elder Dempster Lines Ltd. - African Steamship Co., Liverpool
captain Capt. R. W. Tate
about the wreck
depth (m.) 2000 max. / -- min. (m)
orientation
protected
war grave yes
updates
entered by Allen Tony
entered 17/04/2008
last update Lettens Jan
last update 26/01/2011
 
  Position  
 
Claes Johnny29/10/2010
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 copyright: Unknown - onbekend - inconnu copyright: Unknown - onbekend - inconnu  copyright: UK Hydrographic Office 
 
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  History  
 
Allen Tony25/07/2008Abosso 11 MV was a passenger/cargo liner of 11,330 tons (Capt. R. W. Tate) of the Elder Demster Line. She was powered by a oil engines of 7,200bhp giving 15 knots. She was on her way from Cape Town to Liverpool, when she was attacked and sunk by torpedoes from the German submarine U-575 (Kptlt. Gunther Heydemann) about 589 nautical miles (1,091 kilometres) N of Lagens Field, Azores Islands.

Two torpedoes were fired at intervals of twenty minutes, the second sinking the Abossa in about fifteen minutes. There were only 31 survivors including five Dutch members of the 33 Netherlands Royal Navy and one female passenger out of the ten women on board. Three of the four Royal Navy men on board survived. ...

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ref. used: 
 Martime Disasters of WWII


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About Owners
 
Elder Dempster Lines Ltd. - African Steamship Co., Liverpool

Elder Dempster was a private partnership controlled by Sir Alfred Jones . He died in 1909 and his various holdings were sold to Sir Owen Cosby Philipps and Lord Pirrie who formed Elder, Dempster & Co. Ltd.

The group collapsed in 1931 and was reformed as Elder Dempster Holdings Ltd with the Elder Dempster fleet managed by Holts. 1953 Elder Dempster Lines Holdings changed its name to Liner Holdings and in 1965 ownership was taken over by Ocean Steamship Co. Ltd. The fleets owned by this company, now known as Ocean Transport & Trading Co. Ltd were increasingly integrated after 1974.

The Elder Dempster Line was sold to the French Company Société Navale Chargeurs Delmas-Vieljeux in 1989 but without the ships at which point Ocean Transport & Trading withdrew from deep-sea shipowning.

Lloyd's reference: 1193


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About Builders
 Cammell Laird & Co., Birkenhead
Charles Cammell and Co, iron and steel founders, was established in 1824. Cammell, Laird and Co. was formed in 1903 when the Laird Brothers amalgamated their company with Charles Cammell and Co. - - The Cammell Laird site at Birkenhead on Merseyside was established in 1824, and has been successfully building, repairing ships right through to present times. The shipyard is in a world famous maritime region and is recognised internationally as having been at the forefront of the British Shipbuilding Industry. - - - - - - - Cammell Laird used to have their own flag. The flag was used on ships that were in their trials. Only when approved by the buyer, she changed flags

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  History  
 
Allen Tony25/07/2008Abosso 11 MV was a passenger/cargo liner of 11,330 tons (Capt. R. W. Tate) of the Elder Demster Line. She was powered by a oil engines of 7,200bhp giving 15 knots. She was on her way from Cape Town to Liverpool, when she was attacked and sunk by torpedoes from the German submarine U-575 (Kptlt. Gunther Heydemann) about 589 nautical miles (1,091 kilometres) N of Lagens Field, Azores Islands.

Two torpedoes were fired at intervals of twenty minutes, the second sinking the Abossa in about fifteen minutes. There were only 31 survivors including five Dutch members of the 33 Netherlands Royal Navy and one female passenger out of the ten women on board. Three of the four Royal Navy men on board survived.

All survivors were in lifeboat No 5, the only lifeboat with survivors that didn´t capsize. In all, a total of 168 crew and 193 passengers were lost (=361). Among the passengers were 44 newly trained pilots from the No 23 Service Flying Training School, X Flight, Advanced Training Squadron, at Heany, Bulawayo, Southern Rhodesia.

Pilot Officer William B. Thomson of Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada, was the only survivor from this pilot graduating course. Survivors were picked up from the freezing Atlantic 36 hours later when an Australian Navy Lieutenant on board the sloop, HMS Bideford, which was escorting a troop convoy proceeding to North Africa as part of Operation ´Torch´, sighted their lifeboat. The sloop put them ashore at Gibraltar three days later.

(Pilot officer Thomson was assigned to return to Britain onboard a Sunderland Flying Boat, one of two which were to take off in formation. On take off his plane developed engine trouble and take off was aborted and delayed for a few hours. The other Sunderland, which had a number of high ranking officers on board, plus five passengers, continued on to Britain only to crash in heavy fog upon arrival...all the five passengers were killed.

Pilot Officer Thomson claimed that it was only fate or his lowly rank which kept him off the ill-fated flight. On the Alamein Memorial are inscribed the names of 19 RAF men lost on the Abosso. Others are commemorated on memorials in various countries including Singapore (21) and one name on the Australian War Memorial.
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 Martime Disasters of WWII
 
 
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MV Abosso (II) (+1942)
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