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Norwegian Merchant Ships interned in West and North Africa 1940-1942
My Ship Forum has a posting listing interned
ships of other nationalities.

Batavia | Bosphorus | Brott | Duala | Favør | Gabon | Gran | Hadrian | Heimvard | Jaspis | John Knudsen | Kari | Langanger | Lidvard | Nyhorn | Oria | Patria | President Herrenschmitdt | Regina | Ringulv | Rutenfjell | Salta | Skotfoss | Sørvard | Tana | Vigør

The following 26 Norwegian ships were interned, meaning they were denied departure to allied destinations by the Vichy France authorities. The sailors were either allowed to stay on board, were placed on other interned ships, or in various hotels. After a while they were requisitioned, meaning the ship was put into French service (or German). The crew was then given a few choices: Stay on board and sail for Vichy France (or Germany), go to internment camps, or go home to Norway (the men on the interned ships were also asked if they wanted to go home). The overwhelming majority did not accept the offer to go home, even though they were put under a tremendous amount of pressure to do so, as they suspected they would be forced into German sea service if they agreed to return to occupied Norway. Less than 10% went home, usually because of illness. Crews from 14 ships were sent to 17 different camps. The crew of one, the D/S Ringulv (my father's ship) ended up in 9 different Labor Camps in the course of 16 months, as the only crew to be sent to such camps, as opposed to regular internment camps (see Odd's Letters, Rudzin's Diary and Captain Messel's Diary for details and stories from the camps). Quite a few seamen managed to escape to neutral or allied ports, and from there joined allied ships. About 17 seamen died in imprisonment.

By the time of the allied invasion of North and West Africa in Nov.-1942 only 10 ships remained to return to Allied service, all the others had been lost.

M/S Batavia
Fred Olsen & Co., Oslo (A/S Ganger Rolf) - Built 1922, 962 gt

Captain Trygve Nielsen

Read more about this ship under Batavia.

M/S Bosphorus
Fred Olsen & Co., Oslo (Den Norske Middelhavslinje A/S) - Built 1934, 2111 gt.

Captain Nils L. Hansen

See my text under Bosphorus for the names of those who escaped from the ship. Crew members from Regina and Langanger also took part (not named).

One of 10 ships that went back into allied service.

D/S Brott
Dagfinn Henriksen/Haakon Kierulf, Oslo - Built 1937, 1583 gt.

Read more about this ship under D/S Brott.

M/S Duala
Chr. Gundersen & Co., Oslo - Built 1938, 1800 gt

Captain Ole Thommesen

More under M/S Duala.

Source: Sverre Johansen (postcard collection).

One of 10 that went back into allied service.

D/S Favør
S. Ugelstad, Oslo (S. Ugelstads Rederi A/S) - Built 1940, 1323 gt.

Captain Even Larsen.

See D/S Favør for more details.

M/S Gabon
Odfjell A/S, Bergen - Built 1931, 4651 gt.

Captain ? Nilsen

There's more in my text for Gabon.

Picture of this ship when named Sunnanvik (see link above for history) - Source: Gunnar Skiold's photo archive

One of 10 that went back into allied service.

M/S Gran
Odfjell A/S, Bergen - Built 1938, 4140 gt.

Captain Søren Waage

My page M/S Gran has more.

D/S Hadrian
Hilmar Reksten, Bergen - Built 1919, 1620 gt.

Captain Bernt Breivik

See D/S Hadrian.

M/S Heimvard
Lauritz Kloster, Oslo - Built 1930, 4851 gt.

Captain I. Strand

See my text for M/S Heimvard

Source: Kaare S. Sidselrud - taken while interned in Dakar during the war.

One of 10 that went back into allied service.

M/T Jaspis
Anders Jahre, Sandefjord - Built 1930, 6094 gt.

Captain Einar Høifødt

See text for M/T Jaspis.

M/T John Knudsen
Knut O. Knudsen A/S, Haugesund - Built 1934, 9071 gt.

Captain Sigurd Samuelsen.

See M/T John Knudsen.

D/S Kari
M. Thorvik, Oslo - Built 1920, 1925 gt.

Captain Bjarne Roness

There's more details on my page D/S Kari

M/T Langanger
Westfal-Larsen & Co., Bergen - Built 1930, 9215 gt.

See M/T Langanger

Neuchatel - Roger W. Jordan collection.

M/S Lidvard
Lauritz Kloster, Oslo - Built 1939, 4785 gt.

Captain Nikolai Fredrik Lindtner

The text under M/S Lidvard has a crew list and the names of those who escaped.

Source: Kaare S. Sidselrud (son of 1st Mate Kaare Sidselrud) - taken in Dublin, Ireland, 1954.

One of 10 that went back into allied service.

M/S Nyhorn
Christian Haaland, Haugesund - Built 1929, 4494 gt.

Captain Frants Askeland

Read much more about Nyhorn on my page M/S Nyhorn (incl. names of those who escaped).
See also Odd's Ships.

One of 10 that went back into allied service.

D/S Oria
Fearnley & Eger, Oslo - Built 1920, 2127 gt.

Captain Bjarne Rasmussen

See my page about D/S Oria

D/S Patria
Oluf S Knudsen, Kristiansand (D/S Patria II A/S) - Built 1939, 1341 gt.

See my text for D/S Patria.

M/T President Herrenschmidt
Sigval Bergesen, Stavanger - Built 1932, 9103 gt.

Follow this link to President Herrenschmidt.

Source: J. M. Gramstad.

M/T Regina
H. E. Hansen-Tangen, Kristiansand - Built 1937, 9545 gt.

M/T Regina has more details, as well as more pictures.

Source: Historical Department, MAN B&W Diesel, Copenhagen.

One of 10 that went back into allied service.

D/S Ringulv
Olav Ringdal, Oslo - Built 1903, 5153 gt.

Captain Thorvald Messel

There's a lot more information on this ship under Ringulv and at the links at the bottom of this page.
See also D/S Ringulv on my "Ships starting with R" page.

Ringulv when named Sigrun
Source: Leif. M. Bjørkelund's collection, w/permission.

D/S Rutenfjell
Olsen & Ugelstad, Oslo - Built 1935, 1334 gt

Captain J. T. Selgård

D/S Rutenfjell has more info.

One of 10 that were taken back into allied service.

M/S Salta
J. Ludwig Mowinckel, Bergen - Built 1920, 3907 gt

Captain Erik W. Kylander

Follow this link to M/S Salta for more details.

Postcard (from 1925) received from Arve Hoel, Norway.

One of 10 that were taken back into allied service.

D/S Skotfoss
Thor Thoresen A/S, Oslo (A/S Thor Thoresen's Linje) - Built 1917, 1465 gt.

Captain Kristian Marentius Nilsen

More under D/S Skotfoss incl. names of those who escaped with Lidvard.

From Bjørn Milde's postcard collection.

M/S Sørvard
Lauritz Kloster, Oslo - Built 1925, 3673 gt.

Captain T. Terjesen

See M/S Sørvard for more.

Source: Kaare S. Sidselrud - probably taken while interned in Dakar.

One of 10 that were taken back into allied service.

T/S Tana
Wilhelm Wilhelmsen, Tønsberg - Built 1921, 5535 gt.

Captain Jahn Jahnsen

See my page about T/S Tana

Source: Lillesand Sjømannsforening.

D/S Vigør
S. Ugelstad, Oslo - Built 1935, 1518 gt.

Captain Abraham Asvall

D/S Vigør has more.

In addition 17 men came in on a life boat from the torpedoed ship M/T Ida Knudsen (placed on board the M/S Nyhorn), 16 came in on a life boat from the torpedoed D/T Malmanger, and some Norwegians were on board Danish ships, so all total around 700 Norwegian sailors were interned. About half of those managed to escape by various methods; the majority came to Gibraltar where they were assisted by the British authorities. Follow the links for more details on the sinking of Ida Knudsen and Malmanger.

Odd's ships

Odd's letters | D/S Ringulv | Evacuation | Labor Camps | Rudzin's Diary | Messel's Diary
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