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M/T South America
Updated July 20-2012

To South America on the "Ships starting with S" page.

Crew List

Source: Markus Berger (see Swiss Ships - external link).
Another picture is available on this external page (click in it to enlarge).

Manager: The Texas Company (Norway) A/S, Oslo
6246 gt, 3646 net, 9640 tdwt
Dimensions: 400.3' x 55.2' x 32.2'
Machinery: Two 6 cyl. 4T single acting DM (B & W, Copenhagen), 2200 bhp.
Signal Letters: BNYC

Completed by Nakskov Skibsværft, Nakskov, Denmark as Borneo in Apr.-1931, originally launched as Henrik Ameln for A/S Frugtfart (L. Harboe Jensen), Oslo. Borneo was laid up upon completion, then entered service as South America for The Texaco Company (Norway) A/S, Oslo in Jan.-1933.

Captain: Alf Ambjørnsen

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

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

Voyage Record
From Sept.-1939 to Apr.-1944:

(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 (including all her 1941 voyages).

Departure From To Arrival Convoy Remarks
1939 Oct. 20* Downs Sept. 25 Independent *Should probably be Sept. 20
Oct. 29 Downs Antwerp Oct. 30 Independent
Nov. 4 Antwerp New York City Nov. 23 Independent
Dec. 3 New York City Halifax Independent
Dec. 29 Halifax Verdon Jan. 12 HX 14 See also narrative below
1940 Jan. 22 Verdon Rouen Jan. 26 Independent
Jan. 30 Rouen Port Arthur Febr. 28 Independent
March 3 Port Arthur Halifax Independent
March 13 Halifax Liverpool March 28 HX 27 See also Page 1
Apr. 8 Liverpool OB 125 For Port Arthur, Texas.
Formed OG 25, Apr. 10.
Convoy available at OB 125
(external link)
Apr. 10 Formed at sea Gibraltar Apr. 16 OG 25 For Port Arthur.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in OG convoys
Apr. 21 Gibraltar HG 27 For Trinidad.
Detached Apr. 23.
Apr. 23 Detached from HG 27 Port Arthur May 10 Independent
May 13 Port Arthur Bermuda May 20 Independent
May 23 Bermuda BHX 45 See link to HX 45
May 29 Bermuda portion joined main convoy Liverpool June 7 HX 45 Missing movements, Page 1
June 13 Liverpool OB 167 For NYC.
Dispersed June 17.
Convoy available at OB 167
(external link)
June 17 Dispersed from OB 167 New York City June 28 Independent
? July 14 New York City Port Arthur Aug. 7 Independent A. Hague says:
Notional sailing date
(voyage not mentioned, Page 1)
Nov. 9 New York City Cristobal Nov. 16 Independent A. Hague says:
Traded in Indian Ocean to end 1941
(see also Page 1 & Page 2).
1942 Jan. 3 Aden Suez Jan. 8 Independent
Jan. 17 Suez Jeddah Jan. 20 Independent
Jan. 26* Jeddah Aden Jan. 28 Independent *Page 2 gives departure Jan. 24.
Jan. 28 Aden Bahrein Febr. 5 Independent
Febr. 8 Bahrein Bombay Febr. 14 Independent
March 27 Bombay Bahrein Apr. 2 Independent
Apr. 8 Bahrein Karachi Apr. 12 Independent
Apr. 15 Karachi Bahrein Apr. 19 Independent
Apr. 25* Bahrein Aden May 5 Independent *Page 2 gives departure Apr. 29.
May 5 Aden Suez May 11 Independent
May 15 Suez Jeddah Independent
May 22 Jeddah Aden May 25 Independent
May 25 Aden Bahrein June 1 Independent
June 10 Bahrein Aden June 19 Independent
June 22 Aden Suez June 28 Independent
July 4 Suez Massawa July 8 Independent
July 18 Massawa Aden July 20 Independent
July 22 Aden Suez July 29 Independent To Port Said, Aug. 5
(Page 2)
Aug. 6 Port Said Haifa Aug. 7 Independent
Aug. 15 Haifa Port Said Aug. 17 Independent
Aug. 19 Port Said Alexandria Aug. 20 Independent
Aug. 28 Alexandria Port Said Aug. 29 Independent
Sept. 1 Port Said Haifa Sept. 2 Independent
Sept. 18* Haifa Beirut Sept. 19 Independent *Page 2 gives departure Sept. 10.
Sept. 22 Beirut Iskenderun Sept. 23* Independent *Page 2 gives arrival Sept. 25.
Sept. 29 Iskenderun Beirut Oct. 1 Independent
Oct. 1 Beirut Port Said Oct. 2 Independent Later Suez, Oct 4
(Page 3)
Oct. 5 Suez Massawa Oct. 9 Independent
Oct. 11 Massawa Aden Oct. 13 Independent
Oct. 13 Aden Bahrein Oct. 21 AP 3B Convoy available at AP convoys
(external link)
Oct. 23* Bahrein Bandar Abbas Oct. 24 Independent *Oct . 26?
(See Page 3 -
Arrival Bandar Abbas not given)
Oct. 30 Bandar Abbas Bombay Nov. 5 PB 9 Convoy available via this page
(external link)
1943 Jan. 20 Bombay Bandar Abbas Jan. 26 BP 66A Convoy available via link above
Jan. 26 Bandar Abbas Bahrein Jan. 27 Independent (Stop at Bandar Abbas not mentioned, Page 3)
Febr. 1 Bahrein Bandar Abbas Febr. 2 Independent
Febr. 4 Bandar Abbas PA 23 For Beira.
Detached Febr. 7.
Convoy available via link above
Febr. 7 Detached from PA 23 Beira Febr. 25* Independent *Page 3 gives arrival Febr. 21.
Febr. 27 Beira Abadan March 17 Independent
March 19 Abadan Bandar Abbas Independent
March 22 Bandar Abbas Aden March 30 PA 30 Convoy available via this page
(external link)
March 30 Aden Suez Apr. 5 Independent On to Port Said, Apr. 6
(Page 3)
Apr. 7 Port Said Alexandria Apr. 7 Independent
Apr. 12 Alexandria Tripoli, Libya Apr. 16 XT 10/1 Convoy available via link above
Apr. 20 Tripoli, Libya Alexandria Apr. 24 TX 8/1 Convoy available via link above
Apr. 24 Alexandria Port Said Apr. 25 Independent
Apr. 29 Port Said Haifa Apr. 30 Independent
May 7 Haifa Beirut May 7 Independent
May 14 Beirut Haifa May 14 Independent
May 18 Haifa Independent Arrived Port Said, May 18
(Page 3)
May 19 Port Said Alexandria May 20 Independent
May 25 Alexandria MW 29 Convoy available via link above.
A. Hague says:
Detached to XT 15, May 29
May 29 Detached from MW 29 Tripoli, Libya May 29 XT 15/1 Convoy available via link above
June 8 Tripoli, Libya Alexandria June 13 KMS 15 Tripoli to Alexandria.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in KMS convoys
June 18 Alexandria Tobruk June 21 XTG 2 Alexandria to Tobruk.
Convoy available via this page
(external link)
June 24 Tobruk Tripoli, Libya July 1 A. Hague says:
An intermediate call.
July 15 Tripoli, Libya Alexandria July 22
Aug. 9 Alexandria Port Said Aug. 10 Independent
Aug. 11 Port Said Haifa Aug. 12 Independent
Aug. 16 Haifa Port Said Aug. 17 Independent
Aug. 18 Port Said Alexandria Aug. 19 Independent
Aug. 21 Alexandria Malta Aug. 25 GUS 13 Alexandria to Malta.
Convoy available at GUS convoys
(external link)
Aug. 29 Malta Bizerta Sept. 1 MKS 23 Malta to Bizerta
Sept. 4 Bizerta Oran Sept. 7 GUS 14 Bizerta to Oran.
Convoy available at link above
Sept. 17 Oran New York City Oct. 3 GUS 15 Oran to USA.
Convoy available at link above
Nov. 6 New York City Liverpool Nov. 22 HX 265 Missing movements, Page 4
Convoy will be added.
See ships in HX convoys
Nov. 30 Liverpool ONS 24 For NYC.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in ONS convoys
Dec. 18 From ONS 24 Cape Cod Canal Dec. 19 XB 88 Convoy available at XB convoys
(external link)
Dec. 19 Cape Cod Canal New York City Dec. 20 Independent
1944 Jan. 10 New York City Philadelphia Jan. 10 Independent
Jan. 12 Philadelphia New York City Jan. 13 Independent
Jan. 14 New York City Boston Independent
Jan. 21 Boston Halifax Jan. 23 BX 92 Convoy available at BX convoys
(external link)
Jan. 29 Halifax Milford Haven Febr. 15 SC 152 See also narrative below
Febr. 16 Milford Haven Portsmouth Febr. 19 WP SP 20 Convoy available at WP convoys
(external link)
Febr. 21 Portsmouth Milford Haven Febr. 24 PW 480 Convoy available via this page
(external link)
Febr. 28 Milford Haven New York City March 15 ON 226 Convoy will be added.
See ships in ON convoys
March 17 New York City Philadelphia March 17 Independent
March 20 Philadelphia New York City March 21 Independent
March 23 New York City Boston March 23 Independent
March 25 Boston Halifax March 27 BX 101 Convoy available at BX convoys
(external link)
March 29 Halifax SC 156 Sunk - See "Final Fate" below

 Some Convoy Voyages – 1940-1944: 
For information on voyages made in between those mentioned here, please see the documents received from the National Archives of Norway and A. Hague's Voyage Record above. Follow the links provided for more convoy information; several Norwegian ships took part.

According to A. Hague, South America sailed in the eastbound North Atlantic Convoy HX 14 from Halifax in Dec.-1939/Jan.-1940. As will be seen when following the link to my page about this convoy, this ship is listed as the American South American on the original convoy form. The voyages on Page 1 of the archive documents do not start until Apr.-1940, so I cannot confirm accuracy of this information.

In March-1940, she's listed in station 22 of the Halifax-U.K. Convoy HX 27, destination Liverpool, cargo of lub. oil. The following month we find her, together with Oria, in Convoy OB 125, departing Liverpool on Apr. 8 (link in Voyage Record). This convoy joined up with Convoy OA 125 on Apr. 10, the combined convoy forming the Gibraltar bound Convoy OG 25, which arrived there on Apr. 16 (see the page listing ships in all OG convoys). Her destination is given as Port Arthur, but she went to Gibraltar first rather than proceeding to Texas. Later that month she shows up in station 14 of Convoy HG 27, leaving Gibraltar on Apr. 21. Her destination is now given as Trinidad and she left the convoy during the night of Apr. 22/23. Note, however, that Page 1 states she arrived Port Arthur from Gibraltar on May 10; Trinidad is not mentioned.

With a cargo of lub. oil, she later returned to the U.K. with Convoy HX 45. This convoy left Halifax on May 24, but South America joined with the Bermuda portion which sailed on May 23. She was bound for Manchester on that occasion, station 35, with arrival June 8. A few days later she shows up, with destination New York, in Convoy OB 167, departing Liverpool on June 13, dispersed June 17, South America arriving New York on June 28, and it looks like she subsequently spent several months there, before proceeding to Cristobal on Nov. 9. (Bjørkhaug, Garonne, Polarsol, Ruth I and Vav are also listed in OB 167 - again, ref. external link provided within the Voyage Record).

Her subsequent voyages are listed on Page 1 (showing a couple of long stays in Bombay in 1941), Page 2 (which shows another long stay in Bombay early in 1942) and Page 3. As can be seen, she also had a long stay in Bombay later on. She had arrived there from Bahrein on Nov. 5-1942 and departure is given as Jan. 20-1943, when she went back to Bahrein. Convoy information for a few of her voyages can be found in the table above.

Skipping now to June-1943, when she made a voyage from Tripoli to Alexandria with Convoy KMS 15 (see ships in all KMS convoys), and at the end of Aug.-1943 she travelled from Malta to Bizerta with Convoy MKS 23 (scroll down to the second table on that page). Again, see also Page 3, as well as Page 4.

From Bizerta, she proceeded to Oran, then headed to New York, where she arrived Oct. 4, remaining there for a month. Arnold Hague has now included her in Convoy HX 265, which left New York on Nov. 6-1943 and arrived Liverpool on the 21st (will be addded to my Convoys section but for now, see ships in all HX convoys; Commodore was in Abraham Lincoln). At the end of that month she's listed as bound for New York in the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ONS 24. This page names the other ships in this convoy. South America arrived her destination on Dec. 20, remaining there for about 3 weeks.

On Jan. 29-1944 she joined the slow Convoy SC 152 from Halifax, listed in station 41 (having been cancelled from the faster Convoy HX 274 from New York, Jan. 6). Evanger's captain served as Vice Commodore. South America's destination is given as Milford Haven and Portsmouth. She arrived Milford Haven on Febr. 15, Portsmouth Febr. 19 (Page 4), subsequently returning across the Atlantic in Convoy ON 226 at the end of that month, arriving New York on March 15. This convoy will also be added to an individual page in my Convoys section in due course, along with further details on it. In the meantime, please go to ON 226 on this page in the section listing ships in all ON convoys.

More info on the other Norwegian ships mentioned here can be found via the alphabet index at the end of this page, or go to the Master Ship Index.

 Final Fate - 1944: 

South America was on her way back to the U.K. with the slow Convoy SC 156, having left Halifax on March 29 with a cargo of 7800 tons crude oil for Manchester, when she on Apr. 6-1944 was struck by 2* torpedoes from U-302 (Sickel), in 45 04N 35 22W (according to the captain's report). Page 4 gives the time as 05:45 GMT. The 1st torpedo hit in No. 3 wingtank - No. 8 center tank behind the pumproom, port side, immediately setting her on fire. 5 minutes later another torpedo hit resulting in an enormous explosion aft. The effects of this torpedo appeared to have extinguished the fire, but the ship was broken and about to sink, so SOS was sent and orders given to take to the boats.

Those who were on the poop managed to get clear of the ship on a raft and a lifeboat and were shortly thereafter picked up by the British Rescue Vessel Goodwin. 7 men from the amidships section got into the starboard lifeboat and were also picked up by the Rescue Vessel a little later. When they left the ship she was down in the middle and about to sink.

The same U-boat had just torpedoed and sunk D/S Ruth I when South America was hit, and the Rescue Vessel proceeded to her location, but all they could see were empty lifeboats and lumber floating around, as well as a large patch of oil (survivors of this ship were picked up by another ship - follow the link for details). About 45 minutes later Goodwin returned to South America to find both ends of the ship high in the air with the midships section below water. The following day the escort went back to save the ship's papers and confidential books. At that time the after end had sunk and only a small portion of the bow was visible.

South America's crew was landed in Gourock on Apr. 13 where they were taken care of by the Norwegian consul, before travelling to Glasgow where an inquiry was held on Apr. 18 with the captain, the 1st engineer, the 1st mate and the boatswain appearing. The captain had been asleep in his cabin when the attack occurred. On watch at the time were 2nd Mate Lydersen, Able Seaman Eide, Able Seaman Jørgensen, 3rd Engineer Andvik, Mechanic Nilsen and 3rd Radio Operator Robert Cobb.

* J. Rohwer, who gives the position as 45 05N 35 11W does not mention a 2nd torpedo. He also has the sequence the other way around, listing Ruth I after South America.

Shortly after the attack on Convoy SC 156, U-302 was sunk with all hands by the British frigate HMS Swale - see the external link below for more info.

Crew List - No casualties:
* I came across a story on Barbara and J. Gordon Mumford's website (about convoy ON 154). They have a separate section on misc. Merchant Navy Radio Officers, and one of the stories (external link) is about Robert Cobb in this crew list. He also served on other Norwegian ships, namely Torborg and Chr. Th Boe.
Charles Tellefsen's other ships are named on
this external page.

Alf Ambjørnsen
1st Mate
Sigurd Haaversen
2nd Mate
Bernhard Lydersen
3rd Mate
Ragnar Sahlsten
Radio Operator
Arvid Rolandsen
Radio Operator
John Rugby Lunn
Radio Operator
Robert Cobb
Petter Runde
Harald Schibsted
Able Seaman
Johan Beckman
Able Seaman
Jarl Eide
Able Seaman
Leonard Gulbrandsen
Able Seaman
Jens Heimdal
Able Seaman
Sigurd Jørgensen
Able Seaman
Ragnvald Midtgaard
Able Seaman
Knut Naley
Able Seaman
Kaare Thorbjørnsen
Able Seaman
Torger Torgersen
1st Engineer
Peder K. Pettersen
2nd Engineer
Haakon Gaarder
3rd Engineer
Ørnulf Andvik
4th Engineer
Hans O. Johansen
Osvald Morland
Alfred Gjerstad
Jacob Haakonsen
Arnulf Mullerts
Alf Nilsen
Johan Rabben
Charles Tellefsen
Shu Woo Wang
Louis Adelino
Mess Boy
Ray Putney
(Niagara Falls)
Mess Boy
George Marjoram
Saloon Boy
Geoffrey Watts
(Niagara Falls)
Saloon Boy
William Bull
William Startford
Cyril Campton
James Gunn
J. J. Powell
M. Ginger
J. Ocaome
R. S. Connell

Related external links:
Operations information for U-302


Back to South America on the "Ships starting with S" page.

Another South America was delivered to this company in Nov.-1954. Renamed Texaco South America in 1960. Sold to South Korea in 1971 and renamed Korea Hope. Broken up in 1992.

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).


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