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Owner: Skibs-A/S Sommerstad
Built by Lindholmens Verkstads A/B, Gothenburg, Sweden in 1926.
Captain: Henrik Berntzen.
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.
From Page 1 of the archive documents, we learn that Sommerstad was on her way from Aruba to Bergen, Norway when war broke out on Apr. 9-1940, but was diverted to Clyde. She arrived Halifax on Apr. 17, joining Convoy HX 37 from there on Apr. 22, arriving Greenock on May 7 (having become a straggler on Apr. 23, according to A. Hague). A few days later, she's listed in Convoy OB 147, which originated in Liverpool on May 12 and dispersed on the 14th (link in the table above - Sommerstad joined from Clyde). Her destination is given as Baytown, Texas and she had station 53 of the convoy. However, she experienced engine trouble on May 13, causing her to lose touch and she did not catch up. She arrived Galveston on June 5, and having made stops at Houston and Port Arthur, she proceeded to Bermuda, subsequently joining the Bermuda portion of Convoy HX 53, lub. oil for Sunderland, via Belfast for degaussing, station 56.
Together with Akabahra, Fidelio, Gulhaug, Isbjørn, Slemmestad and Tai Yin, she later joined Convoy OA 196, which left Methil on Aug. 9 and dispersed on the 15th, Sommerstad arriving Houston on Sept. 2 (again, see the link provided in the Voyage Record). From Houston, she later headed to Halifax, where she arrived Sept. 24 and it now looks like she had a long stay there; A. Hague gives departure as Nov. 8, when she proceeded to Sydney, C.B. "Nortraships flåte" claims that she was in Convoy HX 84 in Oct.-1940 (attacked by Admiral Scheer - see Solfonn), but this appears to be an error; as will be seen when following the link to this convoy she's not included on the convoy form for HX 84 (see also a message in my Guestbook). She is, however, listed in the slow Sydney (C.B.)-U.K. Convoy SC 12 on Nov. 13. According to Page 1, she arrived Liverpool on Dec. 1, later proceeding to Manchester, where she also had a long stay.
Early in 1941 she appears, together with Ferncourt, Harpefjell, Leiv Eiriksson, Stigstad and Torfinn Jarl, in Convoy OB 274, which left Liverpool on Jan. 14 and dispersed on the 19th. Her destination is not given (ref. link in the table above), but going back to the archive document referred to above, we see that she arrived Mobile on Febr. 10. She was scheduled for Convoy HX 114 from Halifax on March 11 (in which Hidlefjord and others were sunk, and Kaia Knudsen damaged - follow the links for more info), but instead joined HX 117 on March 27, and arrived Clyde on Apr. 15, later proceeding to Liverpool and Manchester. The following month, she joined Convoy OB 318, departing Liverpool on May 2, dispersed May 10. D/S Eastern Star was torpedoed and sunk but the other Norwegian ships, Borgfred, Høyanger, Iron Baron(?) and Sommerstad reached their destinations unharmed. According to Page 2 of the archive documents, Sommerstad arrived Philadelphia on May 22. (It was in this convoy battle that U-110 was captured and the commander, Fritz-Julius Lemp died - see the external links provided at the end of this page for more on this event).
Sommerstad headed back to the U.K. on June 1 with Convoy HX 130 from Halifax, bound for Manchester with lub. oil, station 82; cruising order/Commodore's notes are also available for this convoy. Sommerstad arrived Manchester (via Liverpool) on June 26, and a few days later she's listed, along with Brisk, Evanger, Fana, Leikanger, Novasli, Nueva Granada, Nyholt, Polartank, Ringstad, Thorøy, Thorshavn, Thorsholm and Vigsnes, in Convoy OB 341, leaving Liverpool on June 30, dispersed on July 6, Sommerstad arriving Baytown on July 25 - please note, however, that I believe some of these ships belong in Convoy OB 341A; see Evanger for an explanation. Sommerstad commenced her voyage back across the Atlantic in station 93 of Convoy HX 144 from Halifax on Aug. 10, along with the Norwegian Polartank, Orwell, Hallanger, Eidanger, Havprins, Grena, Evanger, Norse King, Vinland, Ranja and Suderøy. Sommerstad stopped at Belfast Lough on Aug. 29 before proceedig to Liverpool, then on to Ince, Barton, Manchester and Stanlow (Page 2).
She subsequently made a voyage to Curacao, joining the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ON 15 on Sept. 11. She arrived Curacao on Oct. 3, the convoy having been dispersed on Sept. 16. She was scheduled to return with the slow Sydney (C.B.)-U.K. Convoy SC 51 on Oct. 23, but did not sail (she also appears to have been cancelled from the previous convoy on Oct. 17, SC 50*). She joined the next convoy on Oct. 29, SC 52, but returned to port (as did all the other ships in this convoy), and later got away with SC 54 on Nov. 10. Her destination is given as Thameshaven, where she arrived (via Loch Ewe and Methil Roads) on Dec. 5 . Eglantine and Montbretia are named among the escorts. Sommerstad later continued to Sunderland, spending a month there.
In Jan.-1942 she joined the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ON 59*, but returned to port, arriving Belfast Lough on Jan. 26, later joining ON 62* from there at the beginning of the following month, bound for Curacao, where she arrived on Febr. 25, the convoy having been dispersed on Febr. 15. Astrell, Koll, Leikanger, Maud and Snar (returned) are also listed. In March we find her in station 53 of the slow Halifax-U.K. Convoy SC 74, destination Glasgow and Mersey - again, see Page 2, as well as Page 3 for details on her movements in this period. On Apr. 8, she joined Convoy ON 84* in order to sail to New York, where she arrived on Apr. 27. Grado, Skottland, Spero and Veni also took part. Sommerstad subsequently went back to the U.K. in May with Convoy SC 83 from Halifax, for which Acanthus, Eglantine, Potentilla and Rose served as escorts for a while.
In June she's listed as bound for New York in Convoy ON 103*, and arrived New York on June 27. This convoy, which originated in Liverpool on June 12, also included the Norwegian Ferncourt, Frontenac, Garnes (from Halifax), Idefjord, Kaia Knudsen, Kong Haakon VII (Commodore Vessel), Lista, Maud, Mirlo, Noreg, Scebeli, Thorshøvdi, Tijuca and Troubadour, as well as the Panamanian Norvinn (Norwegian managers). In July she sailed in the slow Sydney (C.B.)-U.K. Convoy SC 93. Her destination is given as Thameshaven, and she arrived there (via misc. other ports) on Aug. 12, returning to the U.S. with Convoy ON 123, which departed Liverpool on Aug. 21; Sommerstad joined from Loch Ewe and arrived New York on Sept. 5.
Rick Pitz, a visitor to my website, has informed me via this message in my Gustbook that Sommerstad was part of Convoy HK 106 in Sept.-1942. Her destination is given as Port Arthur. Again, see Page 3 for info on her movements in this period. The external site that I've linked to in the Voyage Record has more on this convoy. Arnold Hague later has her, together with Primo and Sirehei, in Convoy SC 106*, which left New York on Oct. 16 and arrived Liverpool Nov. 5 (strangely, he has also included the Norwegian Mimona, but as will be seen when following the link, this was a Homefleet ship). From Liverpool, she proceeded to Stanlow and Manchester, and her last Trans-Atlantic voyage that year was made in Convoy ON 152, for which Bonneville served as Commodore Vessel. Sommerstad was bound for New York in ballast - her voyages in this period are shown on Page 4.
On Jan. 12-1943 she joined Convoy SC 117* from New York (Commodore in Geisha), but returned to port, joining the next convoy on Jan. 24, SC 118* (several ships were sunk, including the Norwegian Daghild, follow the link for more info; see also the external link at the end of this page). Annik, Bestik, Cetus, Glarona, Grey County, Maud, Norbryn and Petter II also took part. Sommerstad went back to New York again the following month in Convoy ON 169 (Commodore in Geisha), joining Convoy SC 126 from Halifax on Apr. 8, and early in May, we find her in the westbound Convoy ONS 7. Sommerstad arrived New York on May 28, proceeding to Baltimore the next day and judging from the information found on Page 4, she remained there for over 3 weeks before going back to New York, then on to Boston and Halifax. She was scheduled for Convoy SC 136 from Halifax on July 8 (Commodore in Titanian), but instead joined the next convoy on July 19, SC 137, subsequently returning to New York on Aug. 19 with Convoy ONS 16*, arriving on Sept. 4 (Ferncliff, Fjordheim, Heimgar, Henrik Ibsen, Lago and Ravnefjell are also listed).
Later that month she was scheduled for Convoy SC 142 back to the U.K., but made this voyage in SC 143, departing Halifax on Sept. 28 (see also Page 5). On Oct. 22 she's listed, along with Ferncliff, Gausdal, Henrik Ibsen, Maud, Norhauk, Para, Petter II and Suderøy, in Convoy ONS 21*. Sommerstad was again bound for New York, where she arrived on Nov. 8, then on Nov. 19, we find her leaving Halifax for the U.K. in Convoy SC 147. 1943 was rounded off by sailing back across the Atlantic in Convoy ONS 25*, departing Liverpool on Dec. 15, Sommerstad arriving New York on Jan. 7-1944. Other Norwgian ships were Brønnøy, Danio, Minerva and Veni.
She headed back to the U.K. on Jan. 29-1944 in the slow Convoy SC 152 from Halifax, arriving her destination Thameshaven on Febr. 19 (Evanger's captain served as Vice Commodore), and with Evanger, Henrik Ibsen, Para and Veni, she later joined the westbound Convoy ONS 30* (convoy left Liverpool Febr. 27 and arrived Halifax March 13; Sommerstad arrived New York March 16, having started out from Loch on Febr. 28). In Apr.-1944 she's listed in the New York-U.K. Convoy HX 288, for which Laurits Swenson served as Commodore Vessel, while Emma Bakke's captain served as Vice Commodore. According to A. Hague, Sommerstad had 60 depth charges on board on this occasion. She arrived Avonmouth on May 5 (Page 5), later returning across the Atlantic with Convoy ON 236*, again in the company of several other Norwegian ships, namely Buenos Aires, Fjordaas, Montevideo, Norholm, Norvarg, Rena, Solsten, Thorshov, Titanian and Vera (convoy left Liverpool on May 11 and arrived New York on the 27th - Sommerstad sailed from Belfast Lough on May 12 and arrived Philadelphia on the 27th).
She was scheduled for Convoy HX 294 from New York at the beginning of June that year (Commodore in Abraham Lincoln, Vice Commodore in Geisha), but Sommerstad was still in Philadelphia when this convoy sailed (Page 5). She instead joined the next convoy on June 10, HX 295, for which Elisabeth Bakke acted as Commodore Vessel. Sommerstad again carried 60 depth charges; she arrived Stanlow on June 26, Manchester the next day. Together with Geisha, Grey County, Kaia Knudsen, Mosli, Norden, Noreg, Norse Lady, Reinholt (Commodore Vessel), Rutenfjell, Skaraas, Sørvard and Velma, she now joined the westbound Convoy ON 243* at the beginning of July. According to Page 6, she arrived Philadelphia on July 18, then returned to the U.K. the following month in Convoy HX 303 with 16 other Norwegian ships, namely Tanafjord, Dalfonn, Noravind, Atlantic, Romulus, Skotaas, Geisha (Vice Commodore), Thorhild, Petter, Stirlingville, Rena, Para, Titanian, Mui Hock, Fjordaas and Norse Lady. Sommerstad arrived Stanlow on Aug. 30, Manchester the next day.
With Brasil, Emma Bakke (Commodore Vessel), Ferncliff, James Hawson, Norefjord, Norse Lady and Stirlingville, she later joined the westbound Convoy ON 254*, departing Liverpool on Sept. 16, arriving New York on Oct. 5. She headed back to the U.K. on Oct. 18 in the slow Convoy SC 159 from Halifax (60 depth charges) and arrived her destination Stanlow on Nov. 2, Manchester the next day. On Nov. 13 she's listed, together with Evanger, Geisha (Commodore Vessel), Grey County, Heimgar, Henrik Ibsen, Marie Bakke, Minerva, Snar, Tropic Star, Velox, Veni and Vinga, in the westbound Convoy ONS 36*, and arrived New York on Dec. 4. Christmas that year was celebrated while in Convoy SC 163 from Halifax to the U.K., arriving Liverpool on New Year's Eve.
A. Hague says she joined the westbound Convoy ONS 40* on Jan. 12-1945, but returned to port, later joining ONS 41* at the end of that month, destination New York, with arrival Febr. 24 (Page 6). Other Norwegian ships in this convoy were Atlantic, Evanger, Gausdal, Geisha, Maud, Titanian, Veni and Vinland. Arnold Hague has now included her, along with Germa and Velma, in Convoy SC 169* from Halifax on March 7. Acanthus and Buttercup are named among the escorts (see SC convoy escorts). The following month she's listed in Convoy ONS 46*, which left Liverpool on Apr. 2, with Ferncliff (Commodore vessel), Alaska, Hardanger and Lago in its ranks. Sommerstad arrived New York on the 22nd, and it looks like she was still there on VE Day - see Page 7. According to A. Hague, she headed back in the other direction with Convoy SC 177* from Halifax on May 26. Geisha, Germa, Hardanger, Heimgar, Lago, Orwell, Sir James Clark Ross, Slemmestad, Strix and Velma were also in company. Via Liverpool, Sommerstad arrived Manchester on June 11 and when she returned to New York a few days later, no convoy was necessary.
Accordng to this external page, she was returned to owners (from Nortraship) in Oct.-1945. Sold in 1948 to Det Dansk-Franske Dampskibsselskab (E. Hahn-Petersen), Cobenhagen and renamed Irania. Renamed Skotland in 1952. Arrived Hamburg on July 23-1954 fro breaking up by Paul Berendsohn, Hamburg-Altenwerder.
Military History on line - battle of the Atlantic - has info on the Enigma and Ultra, raiders, U-boats, the convoy system, and all aspects of the battle.
Back to Sommerstad on the "Ships starting with S" page.
This company had also lost a Sommerstad to WW I (steamship), built in Newcastle in 1906, 3850 gt (later remeasured 1914, 3875 gt) - converted to factory in 1913 and hired to United States Whaling until 1920 - sunk by a German U-boat in the Western Atlantic on Aug. 12-1918, voyage Bergen-New York in ballast. This external page has a picture and more information.