Allied Warships

HMS Salveda

Salvage vessel of the King Salvor class

NavyThe Royal Navy
TypeSalvage vessel
ClassKing Salvor 
Built byCammell Laird Shipyard (Birkenhead, U.K.) 
Laid down 
Launched9 Feb 1943 
End service 


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Notable events involving Salveda include:

25 Aug 1943

Convoy MKS 23.

This convoy departed Port Said on 25 August 1943.

It was made up of the following merchant vessels; City of Calcutta (British, 8063 GRT, built 1940), City of Newcastle (British, 6921 GRT, built 1915), Custodian (British, 5881 GRT, built 1928), Defender (British, 8078 GRT, built 1915), Empire Garrick (British (tanker), 8128 GRT, built 1942), Fernplant (British, 5274 GRT, built 1939), Fort Chambly (British, 7130 GRT, built 1942), Fort Gaspereau (British, 7134 GRT, built 1943), Fort Grahame (British, 7133 GRT, built 1943), Fort McMurray (British, 7133 GRT, built 1942), Forthbank (British, 5057 GRT, 1929), Henry St. G. Tucker (American, 7191 GRT, built 1942), Indian Prince (British, 8587 GRT, built 1926), James Fenimore Cooper (American, 7176 GRT, built 1942), James J. Maguire (British (tanker), 10525 GRT, built 1939), Kaituna (British, 4914 GRT, built 1938), Macoma (Dutch (tanker), 8069 GRT, built 1936), Miranda (Greek, 278 GRT, built 1919), Ocean Viking (British, 7174 GRT, built 1941), Peter J. Maguire (American, 7181 GRT, built 1942), President de Vogue (Norwegian (tanker), 9320 GRT, built 1935), Prince de Liege (Belgian, 2588 GRT, built 1938), Robert J. Collier (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Sofala (British, 1031 GRT, built 1937), William H. Gray (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943) and Yenangyaung (British, 5447 GRT, 1937).

The landing ship Derwentdale (Royal Fleet Auxiliary (RFA), 8390 GRT, built 1941) was also part of the convoy.

The convoy was escorted by the escort destroyers HMS Holcombe (Cdr. S.H. Pinchin, DSC, RN), HMS Atherstone (Lt.Cdr. E.N. Wood, DSC, RNVR), HMS Liddesdale (Lt.Cdr. A.A. Mackenzie, RNR) and the corvettes HMS Coltsfoot (T/Lt. G.W. Rayner, RNVR), HMS Honeysuckle (Lt. H.H.D. MacKillican, DSC and Bar, RNR), HMS Hyderabad (T/Lt. T. Cooper, RNR) and HMS Rhododendron (T/Lt. O.B. Medley, RNVR).

Around 1440C/28, the AA cruiser HMS Colombo (Capt. D.H. Hall-Thompson, RN) joined the convoy coming from Benghazi which she had departed around 1230C/27.

On 29 August 1943, the City of Newcastle, Custodiands, Defender, Fort Chambly, Fort Gaspereau, Fort Grahame, Forthbank, Indian Prince, Macoma, Ocean Viking, President de Vogue, Prince de Liege, Yenangyaung arrived at Malta after having been detached from the convoy while the following merchant vessels joined the convoy coming from Malta; Alexandre Andre (Belgian (tanker), 5261 GRT, built 1928), Belnor (Norwegian, 2871 GRT, built 1926), Empire Charmian (British, 7519 GRT, built 1943), Empire Moorhen (British, 5617 GRT, built 1919), Empire Trooper (British, 14106 GRT, built 1922), Harpalycus (British, 5629 GRT, built 1935), Joseph G. Cannon (American, 7181 GRT, built 1942), Karoa (British, 7009 GRT, built 1915), Kheti (British, 2734 GRT, built 1927), Lucretia Mott (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Marigot (French, 4047 GRT, built 1932), Nirvana (British, 6044 GRT, built 1914), Octane (British, 2034 GRT, built 1939), Orna (British, 6779 GRT, built 1938) and South America (Norwegian (tanker), 6246 GRT, built 1931).

The Yenangyaung apparently also rejoined the convoy after a short stop at Malta.

Also the salvage vessels HMS Salveda and HMS Salvestor joined the convoy off Malta.

The Belnor however had to return to Malta where she arrived on the 30th.

On 30 August 1943, the Alexandre Andre, Fort McMurray, Miranda, Octane, Orna and Sofala arrived at Tripoli after having been detached from the convoy.

On 31 August 1943, the Nirvana arrived at La Goulette (Tunis) after having been detached from the convoy.

On the Empire Charmian, Empire Garrick, James J. Maguire, Kheti and South America as well as the Derwentdale, HMS Salveda and HMS Colombo arrived at Bizerta after having been detached from the convoy while the following merchant vessels joined the convoy coming from Bizerta; Alexander White (American, 7191 GRT, built 1942), Chertsey (British, 6001 GRT, built 1943), Eleazar Wheelock (American, 7191 GRT, built 1942), Empire Farmer (British, 7049 GRT, built 1943), George Vancouver (American, 7176 GRT, built 1942), Henry Middleton (American, 7177 GRT, built 1942) and Robert M. la Follette (American, 7191 GRT, built 1943).

On 31 August 1943, the following merchant vessels joined the convoy off Bone; Fort Aklavik (British, 7132 GRT, built 1943), Fort Buffalo (British, 7100 GRT, built 1943), Kofresi (British, 4934 GRT, built 1920) and Ocean Volga (British, 7174 GRT, built 1942).

On 31 August 1943, the Chertsey and Empire Farmer arrived at Philippeville after having been detached from the convoy while the following merchant vessels joined from Philippeville; Fort Slave (British, 7134 GRT, built 1942) and Tautra (Norwegian, 1749 GRT, built 1920).

On 2 September 1943, the Marigot and Tautra as well as HMS Salvestor arrived at Algiers after having been detached from the convoy while the following merchant vessels joined from Algiers; Atlantic City (British, 5133 GRT, built 1941), Charles R. McCormick (American, 6027 GRT, built 1920) and Kosciuszko (Polish, 6852 GRT, built 1915).

On 2 September 1943, the Alexander White, Charles R. McCormick, Eleazar Wheelock, Empire Trooper, Fort Slave, George Vancouver, Harpalycus, Henry Middleton, Joseph G. Cannon, Karoa, Kofrisi, Kosciuszko, Lucretia Mott and Robert M. la Follette arrived at Oran after having been detached from the convoy.

On 4 September 1943 the convoy arrived at Gibraltar.

16 Sep 1943
Around 0530 hours, HMS Valiant (Capt. L.H. Ashmore, RN), HMS Warspite (Capt. H.A. Packer, RN), HMS Jervis (Capt. J.S. Crawford, DSO, RN), HMS Panther (Lt.Cdr. R.W. Jocelyn, RN), HMS Pathfinder (Cdr. E.A. Gibbs, DSO and 3 Bars, RN), HMS Penn (Lt.Cdr. J.H. Swain, DSO, RN), HMS Petard (Lt.Cdr. R.C. Egan, RN) and HMS Ilex (Lt.Cdr. V.A. Wight-Boycott, OBE, RN), returned to the assault area.

HMS Valiant took up a bombarding position off the northern beaches while HMS Warspite went to the same position as on the previous day. Once again HMS Valiant had great difficulty in obtaining contact with her forward observer and it was not until 1648 hours that she was able to open fire on the Nocera area. She ceased fire at 1728 hours having fired 19 rounds. She retired from the area at dusk screened by the escort destroyers HMS Calpe (Lt.Cdr. H. Kirkwood, DSC, RN), HMS Catterick (Lt.Cdr. A. Tyson, RN) and HMS Haydon (Lt.Cdr. R.C. Watkin, RN). They eventually went to Augusta arriving there on the 17th.

Meanwhile HMS Warpite had sustained a heavy air attack. She had difficulty owing to enemy jamming in communicating with her F.O. but eventually opened fire at 1309 hours on ammunition dumps and traffic concentration near Altaville. 32 rounds were fired of which half landed dead on the target and 8 within 100 yards of it.

At 1410 hours, HMS Warspite was proceeding towards the northern area for further bombardment when she was attacked by about 10 FW 190's one of which was shot down. Immediately afterwards, three remote-controlled bombs were sighted almost overhead at 6000 to 8000 feet, their parent aircraft being at 20000 feet. No radar report of their presence had been received. The bombs dived vertically on to the ship which could take no avoiding action in this congested area. Two of the bombs near missed the ship but one hit the ship penetrating into No.4 boiler room where it burst. The concussion was terrific, five of the ships boiler rooms were flooded almost at once, though the ship was able to proceed at slow speed on the starboard engines until about 1500 hours when the last boiler room filled with water and all steam failed.

The USN tugs USS Hopi and USS Moreno arrived quickly on the spot and had the ship in tow by 1700 hours. Speed was 4 knots. Escort was now provided by the AA cruiser HMS Delhi (Capt. A.T.G.C. Peachey, RN) and the destroyers HMS Panther, HMS Pathfinder and escort destroyers HMS Atherstone (Lt.Cdr. E.N. Wood, DSC, RNVR), HMS Cleveland (Lt.Cdr. J.K. Hamilton, RN) and ORP Slazak (Kmdr.ppor. (Cdr.) R. Nalecz-Tyminski).

At 1930 hours the light cruisers HMS Euryalus (Capt. E.W. Bush, DSO and Bar, DSC, RN, flying the flag of Rear-Admiral P.L. Vian, KBE, DSO and 2 Bars, RN) and HMS Scylla (Capt. I.A.P. Macintyre, CBE, DSO, RN) joined them with HMS Euryalus taking over the tow with the intention to leave the area at a higher speed. However the cable parted and the USN again took the damaged battleship in tow. To everyone's surprise, in spite of a night of full moonlight, no air attacks were made by the enemy. In the morning, Spitfires arrived to give fighter cover, followed by two more tugs, HMS Nimble, HMS Oriana and the salvage vessel HMS Salveda. Around 2300 hours, another tug, USS Narragansett joined just as HMS Warspite was to enter the straits of Messina. It took the Warspite five hours to negotiate the Straits due to the strong current. She finally arrived safely at Malta around 0800 hours on 19 September. HMS Euryalus, HMS Scylla had parted company around 1030B/18 and arrived at Bizerta around 0145B/19. (1)

28 Oct 1943

Convoy KMF 25A

This convoy was formed off Oversay on 28 October 1943.

The convoy was made up of the following (troop) transports; Almanzora (British, 15551 GRT, built 1914), Anne Arundel (American, 7796 GRT, built 1941), Aorangi (British, 17491 GRT, built 1924), Argentina (American, 20614 GRT, built 1929), Aronda (British, 9031 GRT, built 1941), Dorothea L. Dix (American, 6736 GRT, built 1940), Edmund B. Alexander (American, 21329 GRT, built 1905), Hai Lee (Norwegian, 3616 GRT, built 1934), Hawaiian Shipper (American, 7775 GRT, built 1941), Henry Gibbons (American, 12097 GRT, built 1943), James Parker (American, 10021 GRT, built 1939), John Ericsson (American, 16552 GRT, built 1928), Marnix van St. Aldegonde (Dutch, 19355 GRT, built 1930), Monterey (American, 148017 GRT, built 1932), Ruys (Dutch, 14155 GRT, built 1937), Santa Elena (American, 9135 GRT, built 1933), Santa Paula (American, 9135 GRT, built 1932), Santa Rosa (American, 9135 GRT, built 1932), Sloterdijk (Dutch, 9230 GRT, built 1940), Staffordshire (British, 10683 GRT, built 1929), Strathmore (British, 23428 GRT, built 1935), Tegelberg (Dutch, 14150 GRT, built 1937), Thomas H. Barry (American, 11250 GRT, built 1930) and Thurston (American, 6509 GRT, 1942).

On assembly the convoy was escorted by the destroyers USS Davison (T/Cdr. J.D. Collett, USN, with COMDESRON 15, T/Capt. C.C. Hartman, USN on board), USS Parker (T/Cdr. J.W. Bays, USN, with COMDESRON 16, T/Capt. C.J. Cater, USN on board), USS Mervine (T/Cdr. D.R. Frakes, USN), USS Boyle (T/Cdr. B.P. Field, Jr., USN), USS Champlin (T/Cdr. C.L. Melson, USN), USS Laub (T/Lt.Cdr. A.G. Hay, USN), USS McLanahan (T/Lt.Cdr. N.C. Johnson, USN), USS Nields (T/Cdr. A.R. Heckey, USN), USS Ordronaux (T/Cdr. R. Brodie, Jr., USN), USS Beatty (T/Cdr. W. Outerson, USN) and USS Tillman (T/Cdr. C.S. Hutchings, USN).

Around 1440A/4, the Strathmore parted company with the convoy to make a short call at Gibraltar. She rejoined the convoy around 1830A/4 having been escorted by the AA cruiser HMS Colombo (Capt. D.H. Hall-Thompson, RN) which also joined the convoy.

Around 0500A/5, USS Davison, USS Laub and USS Tillman parted company to proceed to Oran to fuel. They rejoined the convoy around 1345A/5.

Around 1415A/5, USS Minerve parted company to make rendezvous with the attack cargo ships USS Oberon (T/Cdr. D.G. Greenlee, Jr., USN), USS Andromeda (T/Cdr. W.A. Fly, USN) and the destroyer escorts USS Frederick C. Davis (Lt.Cdr. O.W. Goepner, USNR) and USS Herbert C. Jones (Lt.Cdr. A.W. Gardes, Jr., USN) coming from Oran. They (re)joined the convoy around 1800A/5.

Around 0630A/6, the Anne Arundel, Aorangi, Dorothea L. Dix parted company with the convoy to proceed to Algiers escorted by USS Ordronaux.

Around 0800A/6, the escort destroyers HMS Croome (Lt. H.D.M. Slater, RN), HMS Haydon (Lt.Cdr. R.C. Watkin, RN), HMS Tetcott (Lt. A.F. Harkness, DSC, OBE, RNR), RHS Kanaris and RHS Themistocles joined the convoy coming from Algiers.

Around 0815A/6, USS Boyle, USS Champlin and USS Nields parted company with the convoy and proceeded to Algiers.

Around 1800A/6, the convoy was attacked in position 37°13'N, 06°12'E by 35 German aircraft from KG.26 (Major Klümper). They attacked with glider bombs and torpedoes. The result of the attack was that the Marnix van St. Aldegonde, Santa Elena and USS Beatty were hit and heavily damaged. USS Parker, USS Tillman and HMS Croome were ordered to assist them. They all sank later, USS Beatty around 2304A/6, the Marnix van St. Aldegonde and Santa Elena sank in the late afternoon / early evening of the following day after attempts to tow them to Philippeville had failed. They actually even collided with each other while under tow. To tow these ships the tugs HMRT Hengist, HMRT St. Day and salvage vessel HMS Salveda were sent out from Philippeville. USS Mervine and the Ruys were detached from the convoy to remain in the area of the attack to take over troops from the damaged ships.

Around 2110A/6, the Hai Lee and Thomas H. Barry were detached from the convoy and proceeded to Philippeville.

Around 0810A/7, USS Oberon and USS Andromeda left the convoy to proceed to Bizerta.

Around 0950A/7, the Palermo/Naples section of the convoy parted company. This section was made up of the Hawaiian Shipper, Henry Gibbons, James Parker, John Ericsson, Monterey, Santa Paula, Santa Rosa, Sloterdijk and Thurston. They were escorted by HMS Colombo, USS Davison, USS McLanahan, USS Frederick C. Davis and USS Herbert C. Jones.

Around 1645A/7, the destroyer USS Wainwright (T/Cdr. W.W. Strohbehn, USN) joined coming from Palermo.

Around 2215A/7, the Hawaiian Shipper, Henry Gibbons, James Parker, Santa Paula, Santa Rosa and Sloterdijk parted company to proceed to Palermo escorted by USS Wainwright.

The Naples section, made up of the John Ericsson, Monterey and Thurston arrived at its destination around 1030A/8 escorted by HMS Colombo, USS Davison, USS McLanahan, USS Frederick C. Davis and USS Herbert C. Jones.

Meanwhile the remaining ships of the convoy had continued eastwards escorted by HMS Haydon, HMS Tetcott, RHS Kanaris and RHS Themistocles.

On 8 November 1943, the Argentina, Aronda and Edmund B. Alexander arrived at Augusta after having been detached from the convoy.

On 9 November 1943, the (troop) transport Devonshire (11275 GRT, built 1939) joined the convoy coming from Taranto.

On 11 November 1943, the Almanzora, Staffordshire, RHS Kanaris and RHS Themistocles arrived at Alexandria after having been detached from the convoy.

The remainder of the convoy arrived at Port Said on 12 November 1943.


  1. ADM 234/358

ADM numbers indicate documents at the British National Archives at Kew, London.

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