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To Norelg on the "Ships starting with N" page.
Barbara Mumford has sent me some information from Mitchell & Sawyer's "Empire Ships" which indicates this was one of the ships built under United States Shipping Board contracts (WW I). Built by G. M. Standifer Construction Corp., Vancouver, Wash. and completed in 1919 as Abercos (USSB) - Engines: T3cyl.
Purchased from USA by British Ministry of War Transport in 1941 and renamed Empire Ptarmigan for Sir R. Ropner & Sons, Ltd. Design 1015 - 9400 tdw, 402' x 53'. Engines: Geared turbines.
This was one of 19 ships transferred to Nortraship in 1942. See my page "Ship Statistics & Misc." under Empire Ships for names of the other 18. Norelg was taken over at Clyde, May 1-1942 (she had arrived U.K. as Empire Ptarmigan in Convoy SC 77 from Halifax). Most of the ‘Empire’-named ships that were transferred from the British to the Norwegian flag during the war years were given the prefix ‘Nor’, while some were named for members of the Norwegian Royal Family.
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 (where the Convoy column is left blank, it means convoy is not known).
Errors may exist, and some voyages may be missing.
As mentioned further up on this page, Norelg was taken over by Nortraship at Clyde on May 1-1942, having previously arrived U.K. as Empire Ptarmigan in Convoy SC 77 from Halifax. Along with Carmelfjell (returned), Dux, Evanger (Commodore Vessel), Ingertre, Jan, Mathilda and Torfinn Jarl, Norelg is mentioned in the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ON 94*, originating in Liverpool on May 12, but she returned to port (Clyde), later joining Convoy ON 96*, together with Berto, Bollsta, Carmelfjell, Fagersten, Granfoss, Ingerfem, Norfalk and Rolf Jarl. This convoy sailed from Liverpool on May 19 and arrived Halifax June 7; Norelg, however, was bound for New York, where she arrived on June 8, having left Clyde May 20 - see Page 1. At the beginning of July she joined the slow Sydney (C.B.)-U.K. Convoy SC 90, but experienced steering gear trouble and returned to Sydney. She was scheduled for Convoy SC 93 on July 24, but instead joined SC 94 on July 31, general cargo and trucks for Glasgow, where she arrived on Aug. 14. As will be seen when following the link, this convoy lost several ships.
The following month she can be found among the ships in the westbound Convoy ON 128, which had started out in Liverpool on Sept. 5; Norelg joined from Clyde and arrived New York on Sept. 24. The Commodore's narrative is also available. According to Arnold Hague, she returned to the U.K. with Convoy SC 105*, departing New York on Oct. 11, arriving Liverpool on the 31st - the archive document referred to above gives her arrival as Nov. 2, and she proceeded to Manchester later that month. She had again been in the company of other Norwegian ships, namely Bonde, Don, Far, Herma, Kirsten B, Polarland and Ramø.
She's later listed in Convoy KMS 5, leaving Clyde for Gibraltar and North Africa on Dec. 11-1942, also including the Norwegian Anna Knudsen, Vardefjell (broke in two - follow link for details) and Topdalsfjord. However, Norelg is said to have returned to port on that occasion (again, see also Page 1). She shows up again, along with Bjørkhaug, in Convoy KMS 9*, which left Clyde on Febr. 6-1943. She arrived Bougie on Febr. 20. In March that year she joined Convoy MKS 9. Going back to the archive document, we learn that she arrived Belfast Lough from Gibraltar on March 18, having sailed from Gibraltar on March 8.
We now find her, with Brand, Kaldfonn, Kong Sverre, Petter and Washington Express, in the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ON 175*, which originated in Liverpool on March 24 and arrived New York on Apr. 16 - Norelg is said to have become a straggler from this convoy; she arrived St. John's, N.F. on Apr. 8, having started out from Milford Haven on March 23 (it'll be noticed, when going back to Page 1, that it says "for fuel"). In May that year she's listed in Convoy SC 131 from Halifax, for which Acanthus, Eglantine, Potentilla and Rose are named among the escorts. In June she can be found in the westbound Convoy ONS 11; according to A. Hague, she ran down and sank the tug Erg on this voyage. I have no further details on this. She arrived Halifax on July 6 and having made a voyage to St. John, N.B. and back to Halifax, she started her return voyage in Convoy SC 139 from there on Aug. 9, arriving Clyde on Aug. 24 - her voyages in this period are shown on Page 2.
In Oct.-1943, she's listed, with ammunition, stores and vehicles in station 85 of Convoy OS 56/KMS 29. This convoy left Liverpool on Oct. 7 and split up on the 18th, the KMS portion*, in which Norelg took part, arriving Gibraltar on Oct. 20, while the OS convoy continued to Freetown, with arrival there on Oct. 29; Bosphorus, Star and Vest are also named - according to Page 2 above, Norelg arrived Malta on Oct. 26, Naples on the 28th. She later made a voyage from Malta to Tripoli, Libya, having joined Convoy KMS 33*, which had sailed from Gibraltar on Nov. 29 and had Port Said as its final destination (it had originally started out from the U.K. on Nov. 16 as the combined Convoy OS 59/KMS 33, which had split up on Nov. 28). Norelg arrived Tripoli on Dec. 5 (Dec. 11? see archive document), having sailed from Malta on Dec. 4. Grena, Lago, Ledaal, Loke, Norden and Skotaas are also listed.
Arnold Hague has also included her, together with Germa, Helgøy, Jenny, Norefjord and Sirehei, in Convoy SL 147/MKS 38, which arrived Liverpool on Febr. 13-1944, the SL convoy having started out from Freetown on Jan. 22 and joined up with MKS 38* off Gibraltar on Febr. 2. Norelg was in the MKS convoy and had sailed from Bizerta on Jan. 27; she arrived Clyde on Febr. 12 (Page 2). In Apr.-1944, she's listed in Convoy OS 74/KMS 48, voyage Liverpool-Malta with general cargo. This convoy, which also included Gabon, left Liverpool on Apr. 12 and split up on the 23rd, the KMS convoy arriving Gibraltar on Apr. 25, while the OS convoy arrived Freetown on May 3 - Norelg was in the KMS convoy and arrived her destination Malta on Apr. 30 - see Page 3. She later made a voyage from Alexandria to Augusta with Convoy MKS 51*, which had started out in Port Said on May 30 and arrived Gibraltar on June 9 (Astra, G. C. Brøvig, Hjalmar Wessel, Loke and Skagerak are also listed); Norelg left Alexandria May 30 and arrived Augusta June 4. Later that month she joined Convoy MKS 54* (from Port Said June 28, to Gibraltar July 10 - Hermelin, Jan, Suderholm and Vigsnes are also listed); Norelg was bound for Augusta, arriving there on July 4.
The following month she made a voyage from Augusta to Port Said, where she arrived Sept. 2, having sailed in Convoy KMS 60* (Regin is also mentioned). She now returned to Augusta in Convoy MKS 62*, which left Port Said Sept. 16 and arrived Gibraltar on the 27th (Norsol and Regin are included); Norelg arrived Augusta Sept. 22. In Oct.-1944 she made a voyage from Augusta to Gibraltar with Convoy MKS 64*, which arrived Gibraltar on Oct. 18 (Garonne is also named), later taking part in Convoy SL 174/MKS 65, voyage Carthagena-Mersey, cargo of apricot pulp and cork. The SL portion of this convoy had started out in Freetown on Oct. 18, joined up with the MKS portion* from Gibraltar (with which Norelg joined) on Oct. 30, the combined convoy arriving Liverpool on Nov. 7(?). Note that Page 3 gives her arrival Liverpool as Nov. 13; she had sailed from Carthagena on Oct. 25, from Gibraltar Oct. 30. The Norwegian Brønnøy, Kristianiafjord and Jenny also took part in this convoy. From Liverpool, Norelg proceeded to Manchester.
Follow the external links provided in the Voyage Record for more details on the OS/KMS and SL/MKS convoys mentioned here.
Christmas that year was celebrated while in the westbound North Atlantic Convoy ONS 38*, departing Liverpool on Dec. 13-1944, arriving Halifax Jan. 2-1945. Brønnøy, Rutenfjell and Stirlingville are also listed.
She headed back to the U.K. on Jan. 16-1945 with the slow Halifax-U.K. Convoy SC 165, bound for Liverpool with pulp, arriving Febr. 1, proceeding to Garston on the 9th. A few days later, she's listed, together with Grey County, Henrik Ibsen, Marit II, Minerva, Sandviken and Veni, in Convoy ONS 42*, which left Liverpool Febr. 13 and arrived Halifax March 5. Her destination on that occasion is given as Newark, N.J.; Page 3 states she arrived Baltimore on March 9, continuing to Hampton Roads that same day. According to A. Hague she returned to the U.K. with a cargo of tobacco and lumber in station 23 of Convoy SC 172*, which left Halifax on Apr. 6 and arrived Liverpool on Apr. 22, again with several Norwegian ships in company, namely Annik, Arosa, Glarona, Maud, Minerva, Orwell, Sandviken and Solstad. From Liverpool, Norelg continued to Eastham, Manchester and Ellesmere Port, and together with Solstad, she subsequently joined Convoy ONS 50*, departing Liverpool May 11, arriving Halifax on the 29th. This time she was bound for Three Rivers, where she arrived on May 30, having left the convoy on May 26 - Page 4 shows her voyages in this period. As can be seen, she got to go home to Norway in Nov.-1945 (and again in Jan.-1946).
Managed by Wallem & Co., Panama in 1946. Named New Asia (New Continental SS Co., China) in 1948, Norelg (Wallem & Co., Panama) in 1950. Purple Star Shipping Co., China 1951. Reported sailing as Chung Hsing I in 1955. Name deleted from shipping registers in 1957(67?) due to lack of information.
Back to Norelg on the "Ships starting with N" page.
The text on this page was compiled with the help of: "Nortraships flåte", J. R. Hegland, and misc., including information received from Barbara Mumford, her source Mitchell & Sawyer's "Empire Ships".