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M/T Leiesten
Updated Dec. 12-2011

To Leiesten on the "Ships starting with L" page.

Crew List

A picture is available on this external page (click in it to make it larger).

Owner: Skibs A/S Leiesten
Manager: Rafen & Loennechen, Tønsberg
6118 gt, 5249 net, 9311 tdwt
Signal Letters: BMFY

Built by Sir W. G. Armstrong, Whitworth & Co. Ltd., Newcastle upon Tyne in 1930.

Captain: Nils Jespersen

Her voyages are listed on these original images from the Norwegian National Archives:
Page 1 | Page 2

Please compare the above voyages with Arnold Hague's Voyage Record below.

Voyage Record
From Jan.-1940 to Jan.-1942:

(Received from Don Kindell - His source: The late Arnold Hague's database).

Follow the convoy links provided for more information on each.

Departure From To Arrival Convoy Remarks
1940 Jan. 31 Halifax Clyde Febr. 16 HX 18
March 16 Liverpool OB 111 For Philadelphia.
Dispersed March 20.
Convoy available at OB 111
(external link)
March 20 Dispersed from OB 111 Philadelphia Apr. 3 Independent
Apr. 6 Philadelphia Halifax Apr. 11 Independent
Apr. 14 Halifax Liverpool Apr. 29 HX 35 Missing movements, Page 1
June 9 Liverpool OB 164 For NYC.
Dispersed 46 24N 19 58W, June 12.
Convoy available at OB 164
(external link)
June 12 Dispersed from OB 164 New York City June 23 Independent
July 1 New York City Halifax July 4 Independent
July 11 Halifax Clyde July 25 HX 57 See also narrative below.
Missing movements, Page 1
Sept. 15 Liverpool OB 214 Dispersed Sept. 18.
Convoy available at OB 214
(external link)
Sept. 18 Dispersed from OB 214 Port Arthur Oct. 5 Independent
Oct. 11 Port Arthur Bermuda Oct. 19 Independent
Oct. 22 Bermuda BHX 83 See HX 83 below
Oct. 27 Bermuda portion joined main convoy Liverpool Nov. 7 HX 83 Missing movements, Page 1
Dec. 14 Liverpool OB 259 Dispersed Dec. 17.
Convoy available at OB 259
(external link)
Dec. 17 Dispersed from OB 259 Baytown Jan. 8-1941 Independent
1941 Jan. 11 Baytown Bermuda Jan. 19 Independent
Jan. 28 Bermuda BHX 106 See link to HX 106
Febr. 2 Bermuda portion joined main convoy HX 106 See also narrative below.
Straggled Febr. 10
Febr. 10 Straggled from HX 106 Liverpool Febr. 18 Independent Missing movements, Page 1
March 3 Liverpool OB 293 Dispersed March 8.
Convoy available at OB 293
(external link)
March 8 Dispersed from OB 293 New York City March 22 Independent
Apr. 30 New York City Halifax May 3 Independent
May 16 Halifax Oban May 31 HX 127 See also narrative below
June 2 Oban Methil June 5 WN 135 Convoy available at WN convoys
(external link)
June 5 Methil Southend June 7 FS 508 Convoy available at FS convoys
(external link)
See also Page 2
June 30 Southend EC 40 Mined off Gravesend June 30, towed back
(see narrative).
Convoy available at EC convoys
(external link)
Oct. 21 Southend Methil Oct. 23 FN 535 Convoy available at FN convoys
(external link)
Oct. 28 Southend Loch Ewe Nov. 1 EC 91 Compare w/Page 2.
Convoy available at EC convoys
(external link)
Nov. 3 Loch Ewe ON 32 For Curacao.
Detached Nov. 10
Nov. 10 Detached from ON 32 Curacao Nov. 23 Independent
Nov. 25 Curacao Halifax Dec. 6 Independent
Dec. 8 Halifax Liverpool Dec. 24 HX 164 Missing movements, Page 2
1942 Jan. 6 Liverpool ON 54 Earlier 1942 movements, Page 2.
Put back w/defects Jan. 6.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in ON convoys
Jan. 12 Liverpool ON 56 Dispersed 59 00N 17 00W, Jan. 16.
Convoy will be added.
See link above.
Jan. 16 Dispersed from ON 56 Independent Sunk - See "Final Fate" below

 Some Convoy Voyages – 1940-1941: 
For information on voyages made in between those discussed here, please see the documents received from the National Archives of Norway and A. Hague's Voyage Record above. Follow the convoy links provided for more details; several Norwegian ships also took part.

With lub. oil for Milford Haven, Leiesten was in the Halifax-U.K. Convoy HX 18 in Jan./Febr.-1940 (as was the Norwegian William Blumer). In March she's listed among the ships in Convoy OB 111, departing Liverpool on March 16, dispersed March 20, Leiesten arriving Philadelphia on Apr. 3, according to A. Hague. She had station 32 of the convoy, which is available via the external link provided within the Voyage Record - Emma Bakke and Rym are also listed. When war broke out in Norway on Apr. 9, she was on her way from Philadelphia to Halifax (for Manchester) - see Page 1 of the archive documents. From Halifax, she joined Convoy HX 35 to the U.K. on Apr. 14, and arrived Manchester on May 1, remaining there for over a month. In June she's listed as bound for New York in Convoy OB 164, which left Liverpool on June 9 and dispersed 3 days later, Leiesten arriving New York on June 23 (Erviken and Laurits Swenson are also included in this convoy). She returned to the U.K. in July with Convoy HX 57, having been cancelled from HX 56. Leiesten arrived Manchester, via Greenock and Liverpool, on Aug. 9.

The following month, we find her, together with Belita and Sveve, in Convoy OB 214 (departed Liverpool Sept. 15, dispersed Sept. 18). No destination is given for Leiesten, but going back to the archive document, we learn that she arrived Port Arthur on Oct. 5, proceeding to Bermuda a few days later. From Bermuda, she joined Convoy BHX 83 back to the U.K. on Oct. 22, arriving Liverpool on Nov. 7, later continuing to Manchester again (Page 1). With Belinda, Dalfonn, Erviken (returned), Helgøy, Hørda, Idefjord, Taranger and Thorshavet, she's now listed in Convoy OB 259, which left Liverpool on Dec. 14 and dispersed on the 17th, Leiesten arriving Baytown on Jan. 8-1941 - again, see the external links in the Voyage Record for more info on the OB convoys mentioned here.

On Jan. 28-1941, she joined the Bermuda portion of Convoy HX 106 (having been cancelled from Convoy BHX 104 on Jan. 21). Commodore for HX 106 was in Topdalsfjord. Leiesten had a cargo of kerosene and diesel for Manchester, where she arrived, via various other ports, on Febr. 19. At the beginning of March she's listed, along with Tiradentes, in Convoy OB 293, departing Liverpool March 2, dispersed March 8, Leiesten arriving New York on March 22, remaining there for quite a long time, before proceeding to Halifax on Apr. 30 (Page 1). She was scheduled to return across the Atlantic with Convoy HX 125B on May 6, but instead joined HX 127 on May 16, cargo of lub. oil for London.

On June 30 that same year, she struck a mine off North Foreland, Convoy EC 40 (external link - incomplete listing). She was damaged, but no one was injured, and she was towed back to London for repairs - according to Page 2 of the archive documents, she arrived Gravesend in tow of tugs that same day, and did not leave again until Oct. 19.

The following month, we find her in station 86 of the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ON 32, bound for Curacao, where she arrived Nov. 23, heading back to the U.K. with Convoy HX 164 from Halifax on Dec. 8. She arrived Manchester, via Liverpool and Stanlow, on Dec. 28. This turned out to be her last North Atlantic crossing.

For more information on the other Norwegian ships named here, please see the alphabet index at the end of this page, or go to the Master Ship Index.

 Final Fate - 1942: 

Leiesten departed Liverpool on Jan.-12-1942, voyage Manchester - Baton Rouge in ballast, Convoy ON 56 (she had sailed from Manchester on Jan. 2 and had initially joined Convoy ON 54 on Jan. 6, but had to return to port with defects, again, see also Page 2. Both these convoys will be added to individual pages in my Convoys section; in the meantime, the ships sailing in them are named in the section listing ships in all ON convoys - several Norwegian ships took part).

Convoy ON 56 was dispersed on Jan. 16 and on Jan. 23 Leiesten was struck in the engine room by two torpedoes from U-82 (Rollmann), position 45 27N 43 19W. An enormous explosion occurred, which killed the chief engineer and 3 (4?) of his men, as well as injuring several others. The captain told the 2nd mate to take the injured into a lifeboat, while he himself remained on board, along with 11 others, in order to try to save the ship, but the U-boat appeared and started shelling, so they jumped overboard and managed to get onto a raft. The British messboy Joseph Vine hesitated too long and was believed to have been killed on board by the shelling.

The survivors were rescued after 32 hours by the Greek S/S Agios Georgios and taken to Halifax on Jan. 30. Hearings were held there on Febr. 10-1942 with the captain, the 1st mate, the 3rd mate and the steward appearing. The Greek ship had been in Convoy ON 55.

Charles Hocking simply gives the position for the attack as 400 miles east/southeast of Cape Race. Roger Jordan's "The World's Merchant Fleets 1939" says 6 died, 23 survived. J. Rohwer does not mention Leiesten being shelled.

Pan Norway and Ringstad were also sunk - follow the links for details.

Crew List:
1st Mate Johansen later sailed on G. C. Brøvig for the remainder of the war.
Ivar Skjelbred had previously served on Kollskegg, Titanian, Egda and Tropic Star. After the loss of Leiesten, he served on Lido, Gezina and Novasli (see also this external page).

Nils Jespersen
1st Mate
Johannes Johansen
2nd Mate
Albert Ossteim
3rd Mate
Arne Johnsrud
Radio Operator
Othmar Flåten
Odd Olsen
Able Seaman
Samuel Sørensen
Able Seaman
Ola Byre
Able Seaman
Odd Olfsen
Able Seaman
Johan Møller
Able Seaman
Ivar Skjelbred
Able Seaman
Nils Overmark
Able Seaman
Robert Dalbak
Able Seaman
Erik Jakobsen
Able Seaman
Gunnar Løvendal
Deck Boy
Douglas Hodgson
Deck Boy
Audun Rydlandsholm
Deck Boy
John Hall
3rd Engineer
Øivind Moe
4th Engineer
Gunnar Christiansen
Arne Johansen
Klaus Karlsen
Johan Mosberg
Engine Boy
Wilfred Jenkinson
Engine Boy
Walter Smith
Engine Boy
Norman Coe
Haakon Halvorsen
Jens Jensen
Galley Boy
Arthur Connel
Saloon Boy
Leslie Todd

1st Engineer
Carsten Hansen

2nd Engineer
Thomas Jacobsen

Malvin Tortnes

Alf Nordby

Mess Boy
Joseph Vine *
+ 1 more?
see * below

* More details on the British mess boy can be found on this page at the Commonwealth War Graves Comm. website. He's commemorated at Tower Hill Memorial, Panel 131.

Related external links:
Stavern Memorial commemorations - In addition to the 4 Norwegians listed above (names spelt a little differently) there's a Mechanic *Klaus Tjensvold commemorated at this memorial in Stavern, Norway - perhaps he had died previously(?) or my list above is missing one name. In fact, most sources say 29 survived, 6 died. It's possible the Klaus Karlsen listed as survivor was identical to Klaus Tjensvoll, and is wrongly listed as having survived(?). "Våre falne", a series of 4 books listing Norwegian WW II casualties, also states that Klaus Tjensvold lost his life when Leiesten was sunk.


Back to Leiesten on the "Ships starting with L" page.

The text on this page was compiled with the help of: "Nortraships flåte", J. R. Hegland, "Sjøforklaringer fra 2. verdenskrig", Norwegian Maritime Museum, Volume I, and misc. others for cross checking details as named within above text (ref. My sources).


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