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"Våre falne" also lists a stoker named Arnulf Forsberg who served on D/T Marit (since 1939) when he became ill, and died in New York on March 28-1941. Buried at Evergreen Cemetery in New York. See also my Memorials page, which has a section naming some Norwegians buried in Saranac Lake, NY.
Owner: A/S Jensens Rederi
Built by W. Gray & Co., West Hartlepool in 1918 as War Subadar for the Shipping Controller (Hunting & Son) until 1921, then owned by Anglo-Saxon Petroleum Co., renamed Crenatula in 1921. Mananged by Anglo-Colonial Shipping Co., London from 1927. Sold in 1930 to Jørgen P. Jensen, Arendal and renamed Marit.
Captain: Sverre Caspersen
In Admiralty service (Royal Fleet Auxiliary) from 1940.
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.
From Page 1 of the archive documents, we learn that Marit was in Dakar when war broke out in Norway on Apr. 9-1940. She had arrived there from Aruba on Apr. 6 and was on her way to Trinidad. It'll be noticed, that she spent a month in Trinidad that fall - she had arrived there from Caripito on Oct. 5 and departure is given as Nov. 6, when she proceeded to Bermuda, later continuing to Halifax, where she arrived Nov. 27. She was subsequently scheduled for the slow Halifax-U.K. Convoy SC 16 on Dec. 15, but instead joined the next convoy on Dec. 23, SC 17, bound for Purfleet with fuel oil.
In Febr.-1941, she's listed (together with Para) in Convoy OB 282, originating in Liverpool on Febr. 3, dispersed Febr. 8, Marit arriving New York on the 25th. At the end of the following month, we find her with a cargo of fuel oil in station 52 of Convoy SC 27, which left Halifax on March 30 (escort's report is also available. Favorit was sunk - follw the link for details), and with Fanefjeld, Henrik Ibsen, Inga I, Nueva Granada, Snar, Spinanger and Varangberg, she subsequently joined Convoy OG 60, departing Liverpool on Apr. 26. This was a Gibraltar bound convoy, which arrived there on May 10, but Marit was bound for Curacao, where she arrived on May 16 (having started out from Clyde Apr. 27; again, see Page 1), so would have left the convoy at some point in order to proceed to that destination - according to A. Hague, she was detached on May 1. OG 60 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.
Marit headed back to the U.K. on June 1-1941 in Convoy HX 130 from Halifax (crusing order/Commodore's notes are also available), and arrived Swansea on June 21. Together with Belita, Bello, Geisha, Havprins, James Hawson, Ørnefjell, Salamis, Selvik, Solsten, Tanafjord and Vigsnes, she later joined Convoy OB 345, which sailed from Liverpool on July 11 and arrived Halifax on the 26th, but Marit was bound for Curacao again, arriving there on Aug. 3. According to A. Hague, she had been detached from the convoy on July 16. Follow the external links provided within the Voyage Record for more on the OB convoys.
From Curacao, she headed to Table Bay 2 days later, with arrival Sept. 5-1941. The rest of her 1941 voyages are shown on Page 1 of the archive documents, while her 1942 voyages and a few 1943 voyages are listed on Page 2 (as can be seen, she appears to have spent a long time in Calcutta in the summer of 1942); convoy information for some of these can be found in the table above. Page 3 has more 1943 voyages.
More details on the other Norwegian ships mentioned here can be found with the help of the alphabet index at the end of this page, or go to the Master Ship Index.
Marit departed Alexandria on Oct. 1-1943 for Tripoli, Libya with a cargo of fuel oil in Convoy XT 4 (Page 3 gives departure as Oct. 2, but this may simply be a matter of different time zones used in the records). "Nortraships flåte" states she was on a voyage from Haifa to Malta at the time, while Lloyd's War Losses, Vol I gives the voyage as Haifa and Alexandria for Tripoli with 7000 tons fuel oil. It'll be noticed, when going back to the archive document referred to above, that she had left Haifa on Aug. 19 and arrived Alexandria (via Port Said) on Aug. 21, remaining there for several weeks, before departing for Tripoli. Convoy XT 4 is available on this external page. In addition to Marit, the Norwegian Evviva and Promise are also listed. Marit had 7 Norwegian officers, 5 British gunners and 42 of other nationalities on board.
She was torpedoed on Oct. 4, probably by U-596 (Nonn), position 32 57N 21 11E, not far from land. The explosion occurred between No. 2 and 3 tank, ripping the ship's side away as well as the deck above the tanks, while the midships section and cabins were damaged and sprayed with oil. Lascar Mohamed Abass, who was working on deck, was killed in the explosion, while one of the British gunners, Herbert Keene, who was in the gunbox on the port side bridge wing, was injured, as were Captain Caspersen, 3rd Mate Odland and one of the other lascars.
Marit developed a heavy list to starboard when the oil in the destroyed tanks on the port side ran out into the sea. Trimming the ship by letting out water from tank No. 1 on the starboard side proved to be of no use, instead the foreship started to sink. Upon examination the forward hold was found to be flooding as was the engine room amidships, so orders to abandon ship were given. 1 of the lifeboats had been destroyed but 3 others were successfully launched, with the captain and 1st mate the last to leave the ship around 16:30 (40 minutes after the torpedo had struck), the former on a raft from the foredeck, the latter by jumping overboard and swimming to one of the lifeboats. Half an hour later the ship went down.
The survivors were rescued by an escorting corvette and landed at Benghazi, where the 4 injured men were admitted to a hospital. Gunner Keene died from internal injuries at the RAF hospital in Benghazi on Oct. 6. When the explosion occurred he had been thrown over the pillbox and landed on deck on his back, with his foot jammed between the keel of a lifeboat and the deck. The 2nd mate, who was the officer on watch, had cut his shoe off him to get him loose, and the gunner had walked to the lifeboat himself. The rest of the crew, including the injured lascar, were sent to Alexandria by Sea Transport in Benghazi on Oct. 8, arriving on Oct. 12. After having been transferred to General Hospital Cairo, Captain Caspersen arrived Alexandria on Oct. 15, where an inquiry was held on Oct. 19. At that time 3rd Mate Odland was still in hospital in Benghazi. Those who gave statements at the inquiry were the captain, the 1st and 2nd mates, and the 1st and 3rd engineers.
Captain Caspersen later served on D/S Askeladden.
For info, U-596 had also been responsible for the attack on Hallanger earlier that year.
Back to Marit on the "Ships starting with M" page.
Other ships by this name: Norway had previously had a small steamship named Marit. This ship was delivered in Nov.-1915 as Stolt for R. Christensen & Olaf Konsmo, Farsund, 497 gt, built Hardinxveld, Holland. Purchased in 1918 from owners in Sandefjord by D/S A/S Marit (Øistein Torgersen), Haugesund, renamed Marit. Later that year she sailed as Audax of Skien, then in the period 1927-1935 she belonged to The South Georgia Co., Cape Town. Lost as Ancap Segundo after having run aground near Montevideo on July 15-1966. ("Våre gamle skip").
This company also had a Marit after the war, built in 1943 as W. B. Ayer (Liberty Ship), 7176 gt. Became Norwegian Marit in Aug.-1947. Manager became Marlow Wangen, Arendal in 1951. Came under the Liberian flag in 1955 as Andros (N. J. Goulandris Ltd., London mangers). Renamed Maria in 1962, still Liberian flag (Kronos Maritime Agency, Piraeus & Trans-Ocean S.S. Agency, New York). Rebuilt in Maizuru, Japan in 1962 and became 8426 gt. Renamed Panagiotis K in 1967 (Palmco Shipping Inc., New York). Scrapped in 1971, Spain, having arrived Gandia on Oct. 6-1971.
The text on this page was compiled with the help of: "Nortraships flåte", J. R. Hegland, "Sjøforklaringer fra 2. verdenskrig", Volume II (Norwegian Maritime Museum) and misc. (ref. My sources).