Ships hit by U-boats

Clan Macarthur

British Steam merchant

Photo courtesy of the Allen Collection

NameClan Macarthur
Type:Steam merchant
Tonnage10,528 tons
Completed1936 - Greenock Dockyard Co Ltd, Greenock 
OwnerThe Clan Line Steamers Ltd (Cayzer, Irvine & Co Ltd), London 
Date of attack12 Aug 1943Nationality:      British
FateSunk by U-181 (Wolfgang Lüth)
Position23° 00'S, 53° 11'E - Grid KR 2213
Complement157 (52 dead and 105 survivors).
ConvoyDN-55 (dispersed)
RouteGlasgow - Durban (5 Aug) - Port Louis, Mauritius 
Cargo6346 tons of general cargo, including 5500 tons of military stores, ammunition and mail 
History Completed in January 1936 
Notes on event

At 03.32 hours on 12 August 1943 the unescorted Clan Macarthur (Master John Drayton Matthews), dispersed from convoy DN-55, was hit by two G7a torpedoes from U-181 after a hunt of over 15 hours about 350 miles east of Farafangan, Madagascar. The ship sank by the bow eight minutes after being hit by a coup de grâce at 03.47 hours. After the ship sank a heavy underwater detonation slightly damaged the U-boat and swamped several lifeboats. The Germans questioned the survivors before they left the area. 50 crew members, one gunner and one passenger were lost. The master, 84 crew members, 15 gunners and five passengers were picked up by FFL Savorgnan de Brazza and landed at Port Louis, Mauritius.

On boardWe have details of 58 people who were on board

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