Ships hit by U-boats


American Steam merchant

Photo courtesy of SSHSA Collection, University of Baltimore Library

Type:Steam merchant
Tonnage8,001 tons
Completed1919 - New York Shipbuilding Corp, Camden NJ 
OwnerLykes Bros SS Co Inc, New Orleans LA 
Date of attack15 Jun 1942Nationality:      American
FateSunk by U-502 (Jürgen von Rosenstiel)
Position11° 51'N, 62° 56'W - Grid ED 9444
Complement51 (5 dead and 46 survivors).
RouteNew York - Trinidad - Capetown - Basra, Iraq 
Cargo10.500 tons of general cargo and war material, including tanks and aircraft 
History Completed in November 1919 
Notes on event

At 01.00 hours on 15 June 1942 the unescorted Scottsburg (Master Gustaf Adolph Olofson) was hit by two torpedoes from U-502 about 90 miles west of Grenada while steaming on a nonevasive course at 7 knots. The first torpedo struck on the port side in the engine room and killed two crewmen on watch below and the second hit at the after end of the #2 hatch, destroyed steam pipes and both port lifeboats and blew cargo all over the deck. The most of the ten officers, 30 crewmen and eleven armed guards (the ship was armed with one 5in, four 20mm and two .30cal guns) on board abandoned ship in the two starboard lifeboats and one raft. The master and radio operator stayed behind as they tried to send distress signals and went down with the ship. A total of three officers and two crewmen were lost.

After 18 hours, the survivors were picked up by Kahuku, but six of them died when the ship was sunk by U-126 (Bauer) on 16 June. Some men were picked up by the U-boat and placed on rafts, but Able Seaman Archie Gibbs, a survivor from Scottsburg stayed aboard for four days, until he was placed on board the small Venezuelan vessel Minataora about 45 miles off Curaçao and landed there.

On boardWe have details of 15 people who were on board

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