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Manager: Det Bergenske Dampskibsselskab, Bergen
Delivered in May-1912 from A.G. Vulcan, Stettin (325), built as Prinz Eitel Friedrich for Neue Dampfer-Compagnie, Stettin. 1475(?) gt, 1612 tdwt, 241.5' x 34.6' x 15.3', Triple exp. 1180 ihp, 11.5 knots. Seized by the Russians on Aug. 1-1914 in St. Petersburg, handed to the Russian Navy as transport, renamed Fert. Converted to mine layer in 1915, renamed Ural (1508 gt??). Returned to Neue Dampfer Compagnie, Stettin in 1918, renamed Prinz Eitel Friedrich. Renamed Schlesien in 1922. From 1923 the company was named Stettiner Dampfer-Compagnie. Sold in May-1925 to Det Bergenske Dampskibsselskab, Bergen, renamed Lyra and placed in service Bergen-Faroe Islands-Iceland.
From Sept.-1942 until March-1943 a British able seaman by the name Thomas Patrick Shaw served on this ship - see my page about Hallfried for more details on him, including some of his other WW II and post war ships. If anyone remembers this man, please contact me at the address provided at the bottom of this page.
Lyra had a Danish stewardess by the name of Anette Meldgaard during the war. The ship also had a Danish 2nd mate.
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 several voyages are missing.
Lyra was hired out to the Dept. of Defence from Sept.-1939 as troop transport.
In Nov.-1939 she found a lifeboat marked Vistula of Sweden. This ship had been sunk north of the Shetlands on Oct. 8-1939 by U-37. Follow the external link below for further details.
According to Page 1 of the archive documents, Lyra left Bergen, Norway for Reykjavik on Apr. 7-1940 (2 days before the German invasion), arriving Reykjavik on Apr. 14.
Lyra, together with Iris, arrived Toronto on Aug. 3-1940, carrying 120 men from the Norwegian Air Force. According to the book "Krigens Dagbok Norge 1940-1945" they had departed Glasgow on July 21; the Air Force was establishing a training camp in Canada - see the link to Little Norway below. In fact, they are both listed, along with Caledonia, Carmelfjell, Heien, Ibis, John P. Pedersen, Para and Suderholm, in Convoy OB 187, which originated in Liverpool on July 21 and dispersed on the 25th. Lyra's destination is given as Montreal - ref. external link provided in the Voyage Record; from the archive document already mentioned we learn that she arrived Montreal on Aug. 3. With a cargo of pulp and aluminium, she returned to the U.K. in Convoy HX 67, which originated in Halifax on Aug. 20, but Lyra joined from Sydney, C.B., taking station 73, and arrived Preston on Sept. 4. Together with Alfred Olsen, Gard, Hørda, Siremalm (returned) and Torborg, she subsequently joined Convoy OB 215, which left Liverpool on Sept. 17 and dispersed on the 21st, Lyra arriving Montreal Sept. 30. She headed back to the U.K. on Oct. 15 in the slow Sydney (C.B.)-U.K. Convoy SC 8, cargo of paper and aluminium for Preston, where she arrived on Nov. 3, and it looks like she subsequently remained there for quite a long time (the archive document gives departure as Febr. 8-1941).
On March 28-1941 she reported a U-boat sighting in position 60 03N 09 11W but was not attacked. When going back to Page 1, we see that she was on her way from Reykjavik to Fleetwood on that date. Later that year, in Sept.-1941, we find her in the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ON 21, which originated in Liverpool on Sept. 28. Lyra was only bound for Iceland, where she arrived on Oct. 4, having started out from Loch Ewe on Sept. 30. This convoy will be added to an individual page in my Convoys section; in the meantime, the ships sailing in it are named in the section listing ships in all ON convoys. The following month, she's listed in station 15 of the westbound Convoy ON 37, which departed Liverpool on Nov. 15. Lyra was again bound for Iceland, arriving Reykjavik Nov. 22. As will be seen when following the link to my page about this convoy, ON 37 had several Norwegian ships (as did ON 21). The Commodore's narrative is also available. Lyra's voyages in this period are shown on Page 2, and it looks like she now had a long stay in Reykjavik.
In Apr.-1942 Lyra, with a general cargo for Fleetwood, is listed in Convoy RU 19 from Reykjavik. She's also listed in Convoy RU 23 in May (as are Havsten and Sado), and towards the end of that month she's included in the U.K.-Iceland Convoy UR 26, together with the Norwegian Fidelio. In June we find her in Convoy RU 27 from Reykjavik, again bound for Fleetwood with general cargo. In July she shows up in Convoy RU 32, same cargo and destination (Lysaker IV and Jan Mayen are also listed), and at the end of Aug.-1942 she's listed, along with Gudvin, in Convoy RU 38, general cargo for Leith. (See also Page 2).
Unfortunately, the convoy information for RU 40 through RU 74 is not available to me, but these convoys can be found at the external website that I've linked to in the Voyage Record, and as will be seen, Lyra continued in this service through that year and into 1943 (sailing in RU 42, RU 46, RU 51, RU 63, RU 69 and RU 73). In June-1943, I have her in Convoy RU 76 from Reykjavik, together with Erica, Heien and Nandi, and in July she sailed in Convoy RU 80, with Mui Hock. Later in July she's listed in Convoy RU 83, and the following month she sailed in Convoy RU 86. In Sept.-1943 she was in Convoy RU 89, together with Lido, and in Oct.-1943 she was in Convoy RU 93, in ballast for Fleetwood, with a note stating she was intended for the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ONS 21, which left Liverpool for Halifax on Oct. 22-1943, arriving Halifax on Nov. 5. However, she could not have made a voyage all the way to Halifax, because already on Nov. 6 (Nov. 8?) she's listed in another convoy from Reykjavik to the U.K., namely RU 96 - besides, she's not included in Convoy ONS 21 - see my page listing ships in all ONS convoys. Bajamar is also listed in RU 96. On Dec. 9-1943, Lyra joined Convoy RU 100, bound for Fleetwood with R.A.F. stores. Page 3 and Page 4 show her voyages in the period discussed in this paragraph. Again, see A. Hague's Voyage Record for information on her U.K.-Iceland voyages.
Early in Febr.-1944 she can be found, with R.A.F. stores for Fleetwood, in Convoy RU 107, at the beginning of March she shows up in Convoy RU 110 (stores for Liverpool), and the following month she's listed in Convoy RU 114 from Iceland. Early in May we find her in Convoy RU 118, cargo of grain, destination Leith Dock, then at the end of that month she's listed in RU 121, general cargo for Leith. Towards the end of June she joined Convoy RU 125, bound for Leith Dock, carrying R.A.F. stores, and at the end of July she joined Convoy RU 129, same destination and cargo. In the middle of Oct.-1944 she's listed in Convoy RU 138, R.A.F. stores, Leith Dock, and early the following month she appears in Convoy RU 141, again bound for Leith Dock, cargo of cod liver oil. In Dec.-1944 she can be found in RU 145, R.A.F. stores for Leith. Again, see Page 4, as well as Page 5 and Page 6 for a list of her voyages in this period, with more convoy details in the table above.
Together with Sandviken, she's listed in Convoy RU 152 in Febr.-1945, bound for Hull with fresh fish (see Page 6 above). In May that year she acted as Commodore Vessel for Convoy RU 161 - see also Page 7 and Page 8. As will be seen, she got to go home to Norway in the summer of 1945, making several more voyages to Norway before that year was over.
Returned to Bergenske in 1945 in a bad state of repair. Departed Newcastle for Bergen on July 4 and entered Hurtigruten service. Interior somewhat modernized at Laksevåg June-1946June-1947, oil fuelling installed. Laid up in Bergen May 24-1953. Sold in Febr.-1954 to Sivert Bakke, Bergen, renamed Nora. Sold again in May that year to Adel Abdul-Waha, Beirut, renamed Lyra, and placed in the "Pilgrim traffic" between Lebanon, Egypt, Jeddah and Mekka. Ran aground on July 9-1958 off Tor in The Red Sea, total loss.
Back to Lyra on the "Ships starting with L" page.
Other ships by this name: This company had previously had another ship by the name Lyra from Jan.-1905 until Apr.-1912, and another one from Nov.-1945 until Jan.-1950. C. T. Gogstad & Co. had a Lyra in WW I, built 1917, 1141 gt - torpedoed and sunk by UC-63 in the North Sea on Nov. 4-1917. Also Minnehallen in Stavern, Norway - (Seamen's Memorial in Stavern) lists a Lyra (also owned by Bergenske D/S) that was lost on March 5-1943 on a voyage between Argentina and U.S.A., but I believe this must be an error. It goes on to say that 1 Norwegian died - the names of 2 are given, namely Stoker Sigurd Eriksen and Stoker Jarl Marelius Vindseth. Looking them up in "Våre falne" which lists Norwegian casualties during the war, I find that Sigurd Eriksen died during an air attack in Liverpool in May-1941, serving on Gaston Micard at the time (it's possible he had previously served on Lyra?). Stoker Vindseth is indeed listed as having died on Lyra on March 5-1943, when lost between Argentina and the U.S., but again, I find this very strange.
The text on this page was compiled with the help of: "Bergenske, byen og selskapet" by Dag Bakka Jr., E-mails from Tore Setså, Norway, "Nortraships flåte", J. R. Hegland - and misc. (ref. My sources).