Re: Italian merchant ships
Posted by: de domenico
Date: December 02, 2009 08:01AM
Well,a very good question!
A large number of Italian merchant ships were in Brazilian harbours on (or soon after) 10.6.1940, date of Italy's entry into the war.
Seven among them escaped from Brazil, sailing from March to July 1941. Five reached occupied France: AFRICANA from Recife (5869 grt/1919), BUTTERFLY from Recife (5127 grt/1920), FRISCO from Fortaleza (4610 grt/1906), MONBALDO from ParÓ (6214 grt/1918), XXIV MAGGIO from Recife (5372 grt/1916). Two were lost en route: tanker M/v FRANCO MARTELLI from Recife (10535 grt/1939), sunk by HMS URGE in Biscay Gulf, and STELLA from Recife (4272 grt/1923), captured by the Royal Navy.
One, AEQUITAS (5335 grt/1916) only reached Rio on 31.12.1940 and was transferred to Brazil on 3.1.1941.
Most of the others were confiscated by the Brazilian Government immediately after Italy's declaration of war against the USA (Dec. 10, 1941): AUCTORITAS at Rio (5228 grt/1918), AUGUSTA at Bahia (5702 grt/1904), CONTE GRANDE at Santos (23861 grt/1928), LAURA LAURO at CearÓ (5787 grt/1912), LIANA at Bahia (6400 grt/1914), LIBRATO at Pernambuco (486 grt/1896), PAMPANO at Recife (6232 grt/1924), TEBRO at Santos (4310 grt/1928), TERESA at Rio (6131 grt/1922).
Finally, two more were confiscated by Brazil on 23.1.1942: AIDA LAURO at Pernambuco (6006 grt/1922) and ANTONIO LIMONCELLI at San Luiz do Maranhao (4574 grt/1924).
Source: Navi Mercantili Perdute by USMM