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D/S Løvstad
Updated Dec. 23-2011

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

Received from the webmaster of the site Riversea International, George Robinson.
(Picture taken at Sharpness, Febr.-1951 - the ship visible on the left is British Albatros, built 1911)
Another picture is available on this external page (click in it to make it larger).

Owner: Skibs-A/S Sunde
Manager: Victor Samuelsen, Farsund
3246 gt

Built by Clyde Shipbuilding, Port Glasgow (322) in 1921. Previous names: Launched as Georgios for V. G. Mantacas, Piræus, Georgios Mantacas until 1938, when sold to Norway.
According to the external website that I've linked to above, she was delivered as Georgios in March-1921 to Georgios Mandacas, Piræus. Owned from 1922 by V. G. Mandacas & Co., Piræus, renamed Georgios Mandacas (note difference in spelling). Skibs A/S Sunde (Victor Samuelsen), Farsund took over in Oct.-1938, renamed Løvstad.

According to R. W. Jordan she was managed by Andrew Weir & Co., London during the war.

Captain: Young Samuelsen (all through the war).

Her voyages are listed on these original images from the Norwegian National Archives:
Page 1 | Page 2 | Page 3 | Page 4 | Page 5 | Page 6

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

Voyage Record
From Jan.-1941 to Febr.-1945:

(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 several voyages are missing.

Departure From To Arrival Convoy Remarks
1941 Jan. 2 Aden Suez Jan. 9 BN 12 Earlier voyages, Page 1
Convoy available at BN convoys
(external link)
On to Port Sudan Febr. 15
Febr. 28 Port Sudan BS 17 Dispersed March 4.
Page 1 gives arrival Mombasa March 13.
Convoy available at BS 17
(external link)
Missing 1941 voyages, Page 1
Her 1942 voyages are shown on Page 2.
1943 Sept. 28 Durban DKA 2 Earlier 1943 voyages:
Page 2 & Page 3
A. Hague says:
Detached Oct. 8
(Page 3 gives destination Mombasa, arrived Aden Oct. 18).
Convoy available at DKA 2
(external link).
Missing voyages, Page 3.
Nov. 20 Aden AB 21 A. Hague says:
Detached Nov. 28
(Page 3 gives arrival Colombo Nov. 30).
Convoy available at AB 21
(external link)
Dec. 3 Colombo Calcutta Dec. 12 JC 28 Convoy available at JC convoys
(external link)
1944 Jan. 2 Calcutta Colombo Jan. 9 CJ 11 Convoy available at CJ 11
(external link)
Jan. 10 Colombo MB 61 A. Hague says:
Detached Jan. 15
(Page 3 gives arrival Karachi Jan. 17).
Convoy available at MB 61
(external link)
Jan. 31 Bombay Colombo Febr. 5 BM 84 Had arrived Bombay Jan. 28
(Page 3).
Convoy available at BM convoys
(external link)
Febr. 6 Colombo Vizag Febr. 11 JC 36 Convoy available at JC convoys
(external link)
Febr. 27 Vizag Calcutta Febr. 29 JC 38 Convoy available at link above
March 1 Calcutta Chittagong March 2 HC 39 Convoy available at HC 39
(external link)
Missing movements, Page 3
March 16 Calcutta Chittagong March 17 HC 44 Convoy available at HC 44
(external link).
See also narrative below
March 28 Chittagong Calcutta March 29 CH 17A Convoy available at CH 17A
(external link)
Apr. 5 Calcutta Chittagong Apr. 7 HC 51 Convoy available at HC 51
(external link)
Apr. 17 Chittagong Calcutta Apr. 18 CH 24 Convoy available at CH 24
(external link)
Apr. 27 Calcutta Chittagong Apr. 28 HC 58 Convoy available at HC 58
(external link)
May 11 Chittagong Calcutta May 13 CH 32 Convoy available at CH 32
(external link).
Missing voyages, Page 4
Sept. 10 Chittagong Calcutta Sept. 11 CH 40 Convoy available at CH 40
(external link)
Sept. 20 Chittagong Calcutta Sept. 21 CH 41 Convoy available at CH 41
(external link).
Missing movements, Page 4
Oct. 9 Calcutta Chittagong Oct. 10 HC 71 Convoy available at HC 71
(external link).
Missing voyages, Page 4
Nov. 6 Calcutta Chittagong Nov. 8 HC 78 Convoy available at HC 78
(external link).
Missing 1944 voyages, Page 4
1945 Febr. 23 Chittagong Kyaukpyu* Febr. 24 RK 8C Earlier 1945 voyages, Page 5
*Compare w/Page 5.
Convoy available at RK 8C
(external link).
Subsequent voyages:
Page 5 & Page 6


As will be seen when going to Page 1 of the archive documents, Løvstad arrived Calcutta on Apr. 11-1940, 2 days after the Germans invaded Norway. She later made voyages to places like Singapore, Shanghai, Saigon, Colombo, Cochin etc. Her 1941 voyages also start on this document, while her 1942 and some 1943 voyages are shown on Page 2 (as will be seen, she had quite a long stay at Mombasa at the end of 1942, and another long stay in Calcutta at the beginning of 1943). Her 1943 voyages continue on Page 3, which also lists some of her 1944 voyages (it'll be noticed, throughout this record, that she often remained in port for extended periods of time).

 A dramatic rescue operation - 1944: 

Løvstad had departed Calcutta on March 16-1944 bound for Chittagong (India) with a cargo of coal and war materials. She sailed as No. 4 in the middle column of Convoy HC 44 (external link) consisting of 10 cargo and troop ships in 3 columns. That same day, the Vice Commodore ship, the Indian El Madina, No. 3 in the middle column (in other words, right in front of Løvstad) was torpedoed by the Japanese submarine Ro-111 (Nakamura) in position 20 54N 89 36E, broke in two and sank. From various sources I do not get the impression that Løvstad was originally assigned as rescue vessel, but according to a report written by the 3rd mate several years later the Commodore signalled "you are the rescue ship" to them before the convoy and the 4 escorting British warships continued on, leaving Løvstad alone with the sinking troop ship.

El Madina, which had more than 1000 people on board, had immediately started to sink by the stern, but the rest of her remained afloat for a while. Those on board managed to launch 3 lifeboats before she sank, while a 4th remained hanging in one of the tackles so that all those in it fell in the water from a great height. The area was full of debris and people, dead and alive - a terrible sight.

Løvstad stopped and launched the lifeboats and for 4 hours her men worked to rescue Indian and African soldiers from the debris. As soon as a boat was full, they took it back to the ship, then returned to pick up more. Lines were rigged up from bow to stern on both sides so that those who were able to reach them had something to hold on to until they could get pulled on board. The gangway was also put out. All guns on Løvstad were manned while this was going on. When done, Løvstad had 789 people on board (number varies according to source) in addition to her own complement. Among the shipwrecked men were several doctors who took care of the injured. All of Løvstad's sheets were torn up for bandages and all medicines on board were used up.

Towards the end of the rescue operation, the motor in Løvstad's lifeboat had broken down, so the 3rd mate transferred to one of El Madina's lifeboats and continued the rescue work, picking up another 25. By then it had started to turn dark and the lifeboat was quite a distance away from Løvstad. One of the escorts, which had returned to search for the sub, was asked to tow the lifeboat back to the Norwegian ship. The 25 rescued men were taken on board the escort, as was the lifeboat crew while towing. However, shortly afterwards the lifeboat was let go, and the 3rd mate and the others were left without means to get back to their ship. The commander of the escort had been ordered to patrol the area, and they ended up having to stay on board through the night. The 3rd mate, who was the only radio operator on Løvstad was none too pleased, but they were taken back to Løvstad again early the next morning, off Chittagong, while the 25 rescued men stayed on the escort. Ten crew, six gunners and 364 troops were lost from El Madina, Løvstad's men had rescued a total of 814.

When she arrived the pilot station at Chittagong where the British escorts were, a rare occurrence took place; every one of the warships greeted the little merchantman with the White Ensign, an act which was against the regular rules which said that merchant ships were to greet the warships first. Upon arrival Calcutta (see Page 3), more tributes were paid in the shape of thank you notes from the Indian government, the Ministry of War Transport and several other institutions.

1st mate was Håkon Jølle Hansen, 2nd Mate Hans E. Olsen, 3rd mate/radio operator was Syvert Vindheim (all of them stayed on board all through the war). 1st Engineer was Karsten Hansen, 2nd Engineer David Davidsen. I believe the majority of the crew were foreign (Chinese).

A book about this incident was published in 1984; entitled "814 reddet" which means "814 rescued". Written by Arvid Møller, ISBN 82-531-4166-1, in Norwegian.

For info, the Japanese sub mentioned above was sunk in June that same year by the American destroyer Taylor - see the external links at the end of this page for more details.

Løvstad continued trading between Chittagong and Calcutta through the rest of that year, as can be seen on Page 3 and Page 4 - convoy information for some of these voyages can be found in the Voyage Record above. Page 5 lists her 1945 voyages, while Page 6 has voyages to Apr.-1946, at which time she was in Shanghai.


Sold in 1950 to Skibs A/S Ranheim (manager Bjarne Raak, Trondheim), renamed Ranheim. Sold in April-1952 to Pan Norse SS Co., (Wallem & Co.), Panama. Renamed Marito in 1957. On charter to an Indonesian company in 1958-59. Laid up at Hong Kong July 8-1959. Sold for breaking up at Hong Kong in Oct.-1959. Again, see also this this external page, which has slightly different Post War details.

Related external links:
RO 111 - (The sinking of El Madina is mentioned).

USS Taylor

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

The text on this page was compiled with the help of: "Nortraships flåte", J. R. Hegland, the above mentioned book about the rescue, E-mails from R. W. Jordan and misc. (ref. My sources).


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