Mystery ships at Beirut July 1939
Posted by: paulh
Date: March 11, 2014 06:31AM
In July 1939 newspapers reported four ships crowded with Jewish refugees were at or off Beirut trying to find a receptive port. The names are these ships were given in various ways. I am trying to determine the real names and movements of them.
1. The name given is PRESLO or BRESLAU (even WROCLAW). I believe this is the FROSSOULA (1282 tons, built 1883). The variation is caused by transliterations from Hebrew (or other non-Roman alphabets). Its movements and number of passengers match.
2. OSIRIS with 593 passengers. I believe this may be SYROS (1003 tons, built 1885). In August it was reported the British allowed the passengers to go to Palestine overland.
3. THESSALY or THESSALIA. Greek flag with 500 immigrants.
The identity of this ship is still a mystery.
4. Also an unidentified ship maybe named TRIPOLI.
Proper names transliterated into Hebrew (or maybe Arabic) and then transliterated back to roman letters often become wierdly represented. For instance the CHEPO was reported variously as GEPO, JIPPO, etc.
Since Hebrew lettering usually does not have vowels, the word can easily become garbled.