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M/S Chr. Knudsen
Owner: A/S Borgestad.
Delivered from Burmeister & Wains Maskin- & Skibsbyggeri, Copenhagen, Denmark (335) in Aug.-1925 as Chr. Knudsen to A/S Borgestad, Porsgrunn. 381.2' x 54.7' x 25.9', 2 x 6 cyl. 4 TEV DM (B&W), 1780 bhp.
Captain: Bjarne Sand.
Please compare the above voyages with Arnold Hague's Voyage Record below.
(Received from Don Kindell - His source: The late Arnold Hague's database).
Follow the convoy links provided for more information on each.
Errors may exist, and some voyages are missing.
A. Hague has included Chr. Knudsen in Convoy SL 32, which left Freetown on May 17-1940. Her cargo consisted of cereals and she had station 43, bound for Cork, where she arrived on June 2 - see Page 1. A direct link to this convoy has been provided in the table above, the Norwegian Spero and Strombus are also listed.
With a cargo of scrap iron for Swansea, she was scheduled for the Bermuda portion of Convoy HX 64 in Aug.-1940, but instead proceeded to Sydney, C.B., joining Convoy SC 1 from there on Aug. 15, and arrived Swansea on Sept. 4 (the Norwegian Eva was sunk - follow the link for details). The following month, she joined Convoy OB 228, which originated in Liverpool on Oct. 13 and dispersed on the 17th, Chr. Knudsen arriving Durban Nov. 24. The Norwegian Astra, Brask, Dokka (sunk - follow link for info), Gudrun, Noreg, Polyana and Topdalsfjord also took part; again, ref. link in the table above (my own page about OB 228 only has some reports).
In Jan.-1941 we find her, with a cargo of iron, in Convoy SLS 61, departing Freetown on Jan. 1, arriving Liverpool on the 26th; Chr. Knudsen stopped at Oban that day, later proceeding to Methil Roads and Immingham - see Voyage Record. According to Page 1, she left Immingham on March 3 in order to go to Table Bay, but returned and did not leave again until May 9. She's later listed, together with Atle Jarl, Rolf Jarl and Storanger, in Convoy OG 62, which originated in Liverpool on May 15 and had Gibraltar as its destination. Chr. Knudsen, however, was bound for Three Rivers, where she arrived independently on May 31, having detached from the convoy on May 20, according to A. Hague (she had started out from Oban on May 16). This convoy will be added to an individual page in my Convoys section; in the meantime, the ships sailing in it are named on the page listing ships in all OG convoys.
On June 6 she sailed to Halifax, then proceeded to Sydney, C.B. in order to join the eastbound Convoy SC 36 on July 1, cargo of wheat, station 22. This convoy is not yet available among the SC convoys included on my website, but will be added - A. Hague's listing can be found at ships in all SC convoys. The Norwegian Berto (returned), Bjerka, Bollsta, Don, Einvik, Loke, N. T. Nielsen Alonso, Rena and Rym are also listed. Chr. Knudsen arrived Hull, via Loch Ewe and Methil Roads, on July 23. The following month, she made a voyage to Freetown with Convoy OS 4, originating in Liverpool on Aug. 23. This is the convoy in which Segundo was sunk, follow link for details. Beth, Elg and Ingria are also named; ref. link in the table above. OS 4 arrived Freetown on Sept. 11. Chr. Knudsen had started out from Oban on Aug. 24 and Page 2 gives her arrival Freetown as Sept. 14. Her final destination is given as Table Bay, where she arrived Oct. 4.
She was scheduled for Convoy SC 62 from Sydney, C.B. on Dec. 27-1941 (having arrived there from Trinidad that same day), but instead joined Convoy SC 63 on Jan. 3-1942, cargo of manganese ore for Middlesbrough, where she arrived, via various other ports, on Jan. 31, remaining there for almost a month.
At the beginning of March that year, she's listed in station 54 of the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ON 72, and arrived New York on March 24, having sailed from Loch Ewe March 3. This convoy, which had originated in Liverpool on March 3 and arrived Halifax on the 19th, will also be added to my Convoys section, but for now, the ships sailing in it (and escorts) are named at ships in all ON convoys. Sirehei also joined, but returned to port.
More information on all the other Norwegian ships named on this page is available via the alphabet index below, or go to the Master Ship Index.
Chr. Knudsen departed New York again alone on Apr. 8-1942 for Cape Town with general cargo and Nitrate. Assumed torpedoed and sunk on or around April 10, possibly by U-85 (Greger). This U-boat was in turn sunk with all her men by USS Roper on April 14, which is one of the reasons why there has been such uncertainty over the loss of Chr. Knudsen. This was the first U-boat that did not return safely from Operation Paukenschlag.
In my Norwegian guestbook there's a message from Wolfang Klaue, dated July 18-2001, translated to Norwegian on request. At that time Klaue, together with an American friend, was about to write the story of U 85. (He was born in Greger's hometown, Lieberose, Greger being his father's neighbour). They wanted to tell the story from 3 sides, that of the U-boat, that of the victims of this boat's attacks and that of the crew of the American destroyer Roper, which sank U-85. The message was posted in an effort to find relatives of the victims of Chr. Knudsen, and/or former employees of the Borgestad company in Porsgrunn. In Sept.-2002, Wolfang Klaue contacted me again to let me know about an article that appeared in the Norwegian Newspaper "Aftenposten" on Sept. 20, showing the fruits of his investigations. The article states, among other things, that the mayor of Lieberose, Kerstin Michelchen has given Borgestad's an official apology for the sinking of Chr. Knudsen, and that shipowner Christen Knutsen personally travelled to Lieberose to meet the mayor. Christen Knutsen says this was not the first time that Captain Bjarne Sand had his ship sunk from under him by a German U-boat - the first time was near Nantucket on Oct. 8-1916, and on that occasion he got a "receipt" from the U-boat commander confirming that he had sunk the ship (also a Gunnar Knudsen vessel, also named Chr. Knudsen - see "Other ships by this name" at the end of this page). This is now hanging on the wall of the shipping company's office in Porsgrunn.
Klaue's own father could easily have become a victim himself, having been picked by Greger as crew for U-85, but when he arrived Kiel to join the boat, it had already departed for Horten.
Crew List - No survivors:
Related external links:
Back to Chr. Knudsen on the "Ships starting with C" page.
Other ships by this name: This company had also had a Chr. Knudsen back in 1875, built in Porsgrund that year for J. C. & G. Knudsen, Porsgrund, 587 gt. This vessel was sold in 1903 to new owners in Porsgrund and renamed Nordkap (P. Jacobsen). Condemned after having sprung a leak when on a voyage Liverpool-Port Arthur, Texas on Apr. 1-1906. In July-1905 a new Chr. Knudsen (steamship) was delivered to A/S Borgestad (Gunnar Knudsen), Porsgrund, built in Middlesbrough, 3878 gt. Converted to tanker in 1912, 4224 gt. Torpedoed by U-53 on Oct. 8-1916 off Nantucket Light Ship, voyage New York-London with gas oil (this is the ship mentioned in my narrative above). Note that this external page has excerpts from her deck journal as well as statements from the subsequent maritime hearings re this incident - text is in Norwegian.
The text on this page was compiled with the help of: "Nortraships flåte", J. R. Hegland, "Sjøforklaringer fra 2. verdenskrig", Volume I (Norwegian Maritime Museum), and misc. others as named within the text above for cross checking info. - ref My sources.