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M/T Solør
Updated July 13-2012

To Solør on the "Ships starting with S" page.

Crew List

A picture of this ship is available at Uboat.net (external link).

Manager: S. Ugelstad, Oslo
Tonnage:
8262 gt, 4952 net, 12 775 tdwt
Signal Letters: BMJW

Built by Eriksbergs Mek. Verkstads A/B, Gothenburg in 1938.

Captain: Fridtjof Olsen.

Related items on this website:
Fred Turner's story - An entry to my "Warsailor Stories" section, with details on some of Solør's voyages. Fred Turner also served on Ole Bull, Britannia and Stirlingville.
Edward Driscoll's Story

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 Apr.-1940 to Jan.-1945:

(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.

Departure From To Arrival Convoy Remarks
1940 Apr. 2 Singapore Brisbane Apr. 15 Independent
Apr. 19 Brisbane Wellington Apr. 24 Independent
Apr. 27 Wellington Lyttleton Apr. 28 Independent
Apr. 29 Lyttleton Thursday Island May 13 Independent A. Hague says:
Notional sailing date
(Page 1 gives May 2)
May 13 Thursday Island Singapore May 22 Independent
May 23 Singapore Miri May 28 Independent
May 29 Miri Auckland June 19 Independent
June 22 Auckland Wellington June 24 Independent
June 29 Wellington Brisbane July 4 Independent
July 4 Brisbane Miri* July 18 Independent Miri not mentioned, Page 1.
Arrived Thursday Island July 9 (for Pladjoe)
July 20 Miri Singapore July 21 Independent
July 28 Singapore Yokohama Aug. 9 Independent
Aug. 9 Yokohama Kobe Aug. 12 Independent
Aug. 14 Kobe Saitzaki Aug. 15 Independent
Aug. 19 Saitzaki Singapore Aug. 29 Independent
Sept. 1 Singapore Kobe Sept. 12 Independent
Sept. 15 Kobe Yokohama Sept. 18 Independent
Sept. 19 Yokohama Bumpyo Sept. 21* Independent *Page 1 gives Sept. 24.
Sept. 28 Bumpyo Hong Kong Oct. 4 Independent
Oct. 26 Hong Kong Singapore Oct. 31 Independent
Nov. 3 Singapore Singapore Independent A. Hague says:
To load oil in Dei
(voyage not mentioned, Page 1)
Nov. 7 Singapore Yokohama Nov. 21 Independent
Nov. 22 Yokohama Kobe Nov. 25 Independent Notional sailing date
Dec. 1 Kobe Palembang Dec. 11 Independent
Dec. 11 Palembang Padang Dec. 11 Independent Again, see Page 1
Dec. 13 Padang Singapore Dec. 15 Independent
Dec. 19 Singapore Durban Jan. 8-1941 Independent
1941 Jan. 11 Durban Port Elizabeth Jan. 13 Independent
Jan. 16 Port Elizabeth Durban Jan. 19 Independent
Jan. 19 Durban Abadan Independent
Febr. 7 Abadan Lourenšo Marques Febr. 24 Independent
Febr. 27 Lourenšo Marques Beira March 1 Independent
March 3 Beira Abadan March 17 Independent
March 20 Abadan Capetown Apr. 9 Independent
Apr. 17 Capetown Abadan Independent See also Page 2
May 13 Abadan East London June 1 Independent
June 6 East London Port Elizabeth June 7 Independent
June 30 Port Elizabeth Durban July 2 Independent
July 11 Durban Port Elizabeth July 13 Independent
July 14 Port Elizabeth Capetown Independent
July 18 Capetown Trinidad Aug. 8 Independent
Aug. 12 Trinidad Halifax Aug. 20 Independent
Aug. 29 Halifax Clyde Sept. 12 HX 147 Missing movements, Page 2
Sept. 25 Clyde ON 20 For NYC.
Dispersed Oct. 9.
See also narrative below
Oct. 9 Dispersed from ON 20 Halifax Oct. 11 Independent
Oct. 12 Halifax New York City Oct. 14 Independent
Oct. 22 New York City Port Arthur Oct. 29 Independent
Oct. 31 Port Arthur Aruba Nov. 6 Independent
Nov. 8 Aruba Capetown Dec. 5 Independent
Dec. 8 Capetown Lourenšo Marques Dec. 13 Independent
Dec. 28 Lourenšo Marques Abadan Jan. 15-1942 Independent
1942 Jan. 17 Abadan Aden Jan. 25 Independent
Jan. 27 Aden Suez Febr. 4 Independent (Arr. Port Said Febr. 8 - Page 2)
Febr. 8 Port Said Alexandria Febr. 9 Independent
Febr. 20 Alexandria Port Said Febr. 21 Independent Left Port Said, Febr. 22
(Page 2)
Febr. 24 Suez Abadan March 10 Independent
March 16 Abadan Colombo March 26 Independent
March 27 Colombo C 12 Dispersed March 30.
Convoy available at C 12
(external link)
March 30 Dispersed from C 12 Sydney, N.S.W. Apr. 21 Independent
Apr. 29 Sydney, N.S.W. Townsville May 4 Independent
May 8 Townsville Gladstone May 9 Independent
May 9 Gladstone Wellington May 17 Independent
May 18 Wellington Talara June 11 Independent
June 16 Talara Wellington July 16 Independent
July 17 Wellington Brisbane July 24 Independent
July 27 Brisbane Townsville July 30 Independent
Aug. 1 Townsville Cairns Independent See also Page 3
Aug. 8 Cairns Los Angeles Sept. 7 Independent
Oct. 2 Los Angeles Sydney, N.S.W. Oct. 30 Independent
Nov. 6 Sydney, N.S.W. Talara Dec. 8 Independent
Dec. 12 Talara Balboa Dec. 16 Independent
Dec. 20 Cristobal Gitmo Dec. 24 ZG 16 Convoy available at ZG convoys
(external link)
Dec. 24 Gitmo New York City Jan. 1-1943 GN 30 Convoy available at GN convoys
(external link)
1943 Jan. 13 New York City Casablanca Febr. 2 UGS 4 For Casablanca.
Convoy available at UGS convoys
(external link)
See also narrative below
March 15 Casablanca New York City Apr. 1 GUS 5 Convoy available at GUS convoys
(external link)
Apr. 3 New York City Baltimore Apr. 4 Independent
May 12 Baltimore Philadelphia May 13 Independent
May 16 Philadelphia New York City May 17 Independent
May 25 New York City Belfast Lough June 9 HX 241 See also narrative below
June 10 Belfast Lough Avonmouth June 11 BB 298 Convoy available at BB convoys
(external link)
June 15 Avonmouth New York City July 1 ON 189 Via Milford Haven - See Page 3
Convoy will be added.
See ships in ON convoys
July 12 Hampton Roads UGS 12 For Bizerta.
Convoy available at UGS convoys
(external link)
July 29 From UGS 12 Bizerta Aug. 3 KMS 21 For Bizerta
Aug. 16 Bizerta New York City Sept. 5 GUS 12 Bizerta to USA.
Convoy available at GUS convoys
(external link)
Sept. 9 New York City Avonmouth Sept. 24 HX 256
Sept. 27 Avonmouth Belfast Lough Sept. 28 Independent
Sept. 29 Belfast Lough New York City Oct. 15 ON 204 Convoy will be added.
See ships in ON convoys
Oct. 19 New York City Baltimore Oct. 20 Independent
Nov. 18 Baltimore Philadelphia Nov. 18 Independent
Nov. 22* Philadelphia Hampton Roads Nov. 23 Independent *Page 3 gives departure Nov. 18
Nov. 24 Hampton Roads Algiers Dec. 13 UGS 25 For Algiers.
Convoy available at UGS convoys
(external link)
Dec. 25 Algiers New York City Jan. 16-1944 GUS 25 Algiers to USA.
Convoy available at GUS convoys
(external link)
1944 Jan. 22 New York City Hampton Roads Jan. 23 Independent
Jan. 25 Hampton Roads Gibraltar Febr. 11 UGS 31 For Gibraltar.
Convoy available at UGS convoys
(external link)
Febr. 17 Casablanca Hampton Roads* March 8 GUS 30 Casablanca to USA.
*Arr. New York, March 8 - See Page 4
Convoy available at GUS convoys
(external link)
March 12 New York City Hampton Roads March 13 Independent
March 14 Hampton Roads Algiers Apr. 1 UGS 36 For Algiers.
Convoy available at UGS convoys
(external link)
Apr. 8 Algiers Port Said Apr. 16 KMS 46 Algiers to Port Said.
(On to Suez, same day, Page 4)
Convoy will be added.
See ships in KMS convoys
May 5 Suez Aden May 11 Independent
May 11 Aden Abadan May 20 Independent
May 22 Abadan Aden June 1 Independent
June 1 Aden Suez June 7 Independent On to Port Said, June 10
(Page 4)
June 18 Port Said Augusta June 24 MKS 53 For Augusta.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in MKS convoys
June 25 Augusta Taranto June 26 AH 51 Convoy available at AH convoys
(external link)
July 2 Taranto Augusta July 4 HA 52 Convoy available at HA convoys
(external link)
July 8 Augusta Baltimore July 29 GUS 45 Augusta to USA
Aug. 23 Baltimore Philadelphia Aug. 23 Independent
Aug. 26 Philadelphia New York City Aug. 27 Independent
Aug. 31 New York City Liverpool Sept. 17 HX 306 Escort Oiler, 60 depth charges
Sept. 18 Liverpool Heysham Sept. 18 Independent
Sept. 21 Heysham Belfast Lough Sept. 21 Independent
Sept. 23 Belfast Lough New York City Oct. 9 ON 255 Escort Oiler.
Convoy will be added.
See ships in ON convoys
Oct. 15 New York City Southend Oct. 30 HX 314 Escort Oiler, 60 depth charges
(again, see also Page 4)
Nov. 8 Southend Philadelphia Nov. 24 ON 265 Convoy will be added.
See link above
Nov. 25 Philadelphia New York City Nov. 27 Independent
Dec. 4 New York City Liverpool Dec. 19 HX 324 Escort Oiler, 60 depth charges.
See also narrative below
Dec. 24 Liverpool New York City Jan. 8-1945 ON 274 Convoy will be added.
See link above
1945 Jan. 13 New York City HX 332 Escort Oiler, 60 depth charges
Torpedoed & damaged
Jan. 21* Torpedoed in HX 332 Oxwich Bay Jan. 29 In tow *Should be Jan. 27.
Cargo discharged, total loss.
See "Final Fate" below


 Misc. Convoy Voyages: 
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; the Commodore's notes are also available for some of them and several Norwegian ships took part.

As will be seen when going to Page 1 of the documents received from the Norwegian archives, Solør was en route from Singapore to Brisbane when war broke out in Norway on Apr. 9-1940. Her voyages that year, and the majority of those made in 1941 (and 1942), took place without a convoy.

At the end of Aug.-1941 she's listed in the Halifax-U.K. Convoy HX 147, together with the Norwegian Nueva Granada, Bello, Bralanta, Sandanger, Slemmestad, Strinda, G. C. Brøvig and O. A. Knudsen. Solør arrived Bowling on Sept. 12, Ardrossan on the 14th. She was scheduled to return across the Atlantic with Convoy ON 19 on Sept. 21, but instead joined the next convoy a few days later, ON 20. She was bound for New York, and had station 82, arriving New York (via Halifax Oct. 11) on Oct. 14, having started out from Clyde on Sept. 25. See Page 2, which also shows some of her 1942 voyages, while the rest are listed on Page 3 (it'll be noticed that she spent quite a long time in Los Angeles that fall).

Skipping now to Jan. 6-1943, when she was scheduled for Convoy HX 222 from New York (Vestfold was sunk - follow the link for details), but did not sail; there's also a notation next to her name saying "not for U.K.". This may have something to do with the fact that she took part in the Torch operations, which had commenced in Nov.-1942. In fact, from Page 3 of the archive documents we learn that she sailed from New York on Jan. 13-1943 and arrived Casablanca on Febr. 2 (remaining there for several weeks). For this voyage, Arnold Hague has included her in Convoy UGS 4, and she went back to New York the following month with Convoy GUS 5, arriving her destination on Apr. 1. A. Hague's listing for both these convoys is available via the external links provided within the Voyage Record above. (My page about Athos has a list of other Norwegian ships taking part in the Torch operations). From New York, she proceeded to Baltimore a couple of days later, and as can be seen when going back to Page 3, she did not leave until May 12, when she continued to Philadelphia, then returned to New York. She was scheduled for Convoy HX 240 to the U.K. on May 19, but instead joined the next convoy on May 25, HX 241, taking station 92. She was bound for Avonmouth, where she arrived (via Belfast Lough) on June 11, heading back to New York a few days later in Convoy ON 189*, which originated in Liverpool on June 16 and arrived New York July 1. Gallia, Glarona, Kong Sverre, Roald Amundsen, Solsten and Troubadour are also listed in this convoy, while Acanthus, Potentilla and Rose are named among the escorts (see ON convoy escorts).

Solør later proceeded to Hampton Roads, and from there she now headed to Bizerta, where she arrived on Aug. 3. According to A. Hague, she had sailed from the U.S. in Convoy UGS 12 (ref. Voyage Record), but joined Convoy KMS 21 on July 29 for the last leg of her voyage (scroll down to the 2nd table on my page about this convoy). By Sept. 9 she was back in New York, joining Convoy HX 256, for which the Norwegian Topdalsfjord served as Commodore Vessel, while the Vice Commodore was in Brimanger. Solør was again bound for Avonmouth, where she arrived on Sept. 24. Just a few days later, we find her in the westbound Convoy ON 204*, which originated in Liverpool on Sept. 28 and arrived New York Oct. 15. Solør had joined this convoy from Belfast Lough; she had again been in the company of several other Norwegian ships, namely Fernmoor, Fjordaas, Minerva, Montevideo, Salamis, Tungsha, Villanger and Viva. From New York, Solør proceeded to Baltimore, and according to Page 3, she remained there for almost a month before continuing to Philadelphia.

Fred Turner says in his story in my Warsailor Stories section that Solør left Philadelphia on Nov. 19-1943 with a cargo of gasoline, bound for Algiers, docking in Algiers on Dec. 15. This fits in with the fact that she's listed as bound for Algiers in Convoy UGS 25; ref. external link in the table above - however, the dates that Fred remembers don't quite agree with the information found on the archive document mentioned above, which gives arrival Algiers as Dec. 13. Fred adds that after unloading, they returned to the U.S. and landed in New York on Jan. 19-1944 (archive doc gives arrival New York as Jan. 16 - she had made this voyage in Convoy GUS 25). Her subsequent voyages are shown on Page 4, and in the Voyage Record.

In Apr.-1944 she made a voyage from Algiers to Port Said, having joined Convoy KMS 46, which left Gibraltar on Apr. 6; Solør started out in Algiers on Apr. 8 and arrived Port Said on the 16th. This convoy will be added to an individual page in my Convoys section; in the meantime, the ships sailing in it are named in the section listing ships in all KMS convoys. She now made voyages to Suez, Aden and Abadan, then back to Aden, Suez and Port Said, and in June that year we find her in Convoy MKS 53, departing Port Said on June 18, arriving Gibraltar on the 29th; Solør, however, was bound for Augusta, where she arrived on June 24 (this convoy will also be added, but for now, please see the section listing ships in all MKS convoys). Having made a voyage to Taranto and back to Augusta (Page 4), she joined Convoy GUS 45, which left Port Said on July 4-1944 and arrived Hampton Roads on the 29th, but several ships parted company along the way, while others joined. According to the original convoy document, Solør joined from Augusta in the morning of July 9 and was bound for Baltimore, with arrival on the 29th, again remaining there for over 3 weeks before proceeding to Philadelphia (perhaps she had been fitted out for service as Escort Oiler?).

At the end of Aug.-1944 she joined Convoy HX 306 from New York to the U.K., serving as Escort Oiler for the convoy, also carrying 60 depth charges, according to A. Hague. Her destination is given as Heysham, and she arrived there on Sept. 18, returning to New York in Convoy ON 255*, which sailed from Liverpool on Sept. 22 and arrived New York Oct. 9 - Solør joined from Belfast Lough and again served as Escort Oiler. Brimanger (Commodore Vessel), Fernwood, Ivaran, Herbrand, Solfonn and Stiklestad are also listed. Some of these ships, including Solør, headed back to the U.K. on Oct. 15 in Convoy HX 314, serving as Escort Oiler again and had 60 depth charges on board. Commodore was in the Norwegian Emma Bakke. Solør subsequently went back across the Atlantic in Convoy ON 265*, and arrived Philadelphia on Nov. 24. Elg, Frontenac, Kaia Knudsen and Leiv Eiriksson are also named in this convoy. Solør was scheduled for Convoy HX 323 on Nov. 29 (Commodore in Samuel Bakke, Vice Commodore in Laurits Swenson), but instead joined the next convoy on Dec. 4, HX 324; her destination is given as Dingle. She arrived Liverpool on Dec. 19, having served as Escort Oiler, again with 60 depth charges on board. Just a few days later we find her, together with Høyanger, Kristianiafjord, Kronprinsessen, Laurits Swenson, Marathon, Molda, Samuel Bakke (Commodore Vessel), Sophocles and Velma, in the westbound Convoy ON 274*, arriving New York on Jan. 8-1945.

* The ON convoys will be added to individual pages in my Convoys section in due course, along with further details on each. In the meantime, the ships sailing in them (and escorts) are named in the section listing ships in all ON convoys.

For more details on the other Norwegian ships mentioned here, please see the alphabet index at the end of this page, or go to the Master Ship Index

I can't help but notice that Solør was in port on 2 occasions on May 17, once in 1942 (in Wellington), and again in 1943, when she was in New York. This is a very important day for Norwegians (Constitution Day), which is always heavily celebrated, and I would imagine it was even more important to do so in wartime.

 Final Fate - 1945: 

As already mentioned, Solør had arrived New York on Jan. 8-1945. She was on her way back to the U.K. again in Convoy HX 332, having departed New York on Jan. 13 with a cargo of 11 000 tons oil for Clyde, as well as gliders (and 60 depth charges, serving as Escort Oiler), when she was torpedoed in the port side engine room (stern) on Jan. 27 by U-825 (Stoelker) while inward bound for St. Georges Channel, position 52 35N 05 18W. Commodore for this convoy was in Abraham Lincoln.

The entire after structure was damaged, the poop dropping 4 to 5 ft. The ship was abandoned at 13:25, about an hour after the torpedo had hit. 4 had died, 40 survived and were picked up by the Rescue Vessel Zamalek. With the exception of 7 men who had been injured, the crew was placed back on board Solør the next day, while the injured men were taken to Swansea by Zamalek and admitted to Swansea Hospital.

Solør was taken in tow and beached at Oxwich Bay late at night on the 29th (again, see also Page 4). Half of her cargo and 17 gliders had been unloaded before she broke in two and was given up as a total loss. The foreward 2/3 of the ship was later refloated and broken up at Briton Ferry, while the stern portion was left at Oxwich, then salved for scrap in July 1952.

The inquiry was held in Cardiff on Febr. 6-1945 with the captain, the 2nd mate, the 2nd engineer, Able Seaman Ulleland (helmsman at the time of attack) and Ordinary Seaman Bird (lookout) appearing.

The American Ruben Dario was also torpedoed by U-825 that day, but could continue (ref. external link at the end of this page). U-1051 was apparently also in the area, ready for attack, but was never able to deliver a report as it was sunk by an escort that same day, according to "Nortraships flåte". This sinking date corresponds with a footnote in Jürgen Rohwer's book - however, Uboat.net has the 26th in the Irish Sea, saying it was U-1172 that was sunk in St. Georges Channel on the 27th - again, see the external links at the end of this page. For info, U-1051 had sunk Galatea a few days earlier, while U-1172 had been responsible for the attacks on Spinanger and Vigsnes - follow the links for details. (Rohwer has Solør listed as a steamship, but that's incorrect).

Crew List:
Mechanic Lund had been seen standing in the tunnel (engine room) just before the explosion - believed to have been killed immediately.
Electrician Johansen's body was found jammed between the deck and the ceiling - also believed to have been killed immediately.
Arne Halvorsen's other ships are named on this external page, while Viktor Nygren's ships can be found on
this page (also external).

Survivors
Captain
Fridtjof Olsen
1st Mate
Anton Antonsen
2nd Mate
Fritz Karlsen
3rd Mate
Isak Knarvik
Radio Operator
Govert Røsstad
Radio Operator
Ole Simonsen
Carpenter
Arne Fjellbo
Boatswain
Karl Sørensen
Able Seaman
Reidar Jørgensen
Able Seaman
Werner Johansen
Able Seaman
Sverre Larsen
Able Seaman
Villy Ulleland
Able Seaman
Hans Haukaas
Able Seaman
Jesper Robbestad
Able Seaman
Thorvald Thon
Able Seaman
Aasmund Ingebrigtsen
Able Seaman/Gunner
Alfred Ødegaard
Able Seaman/Gunner
Viktor Nygren
Able Seaman/Gunner
Bernt Sundnes
Able Seaman/Gunner
Rolf Larsen
Able Seaman/Gunner
Sven Widell
(Swedish)
Ordinary Seaman
Kenneth Bird
(Canadian)
1st Engineer
Holger Svendsen
2nd Engineer
Edvin Engelstad
3rd Engineer
Frank Regi Skare
Assistant
Thore Borgersen
Mechanic
Erling Abrahamsen
Mechanic
Leif Ellefsen
Mechanic
Arne Halvorsen
Pumpman
Paulin Sørsvand
Oiler
Einar Virgenes
Oiler
Hilmar Johnsen
Officer/Gunner
Gunder Matheson
(Nationality?)
Steward
Hans Endresen
1st Cook
Karl Vikse
2nd Cook
Halfdan Nielsen
Mess Boy
Ernest Hough
(British)
Mess Boy
Oluf Notander
(Swedish)
Saloon Boy
Lewis Laurie
(Canadian)
Gunner
Kenneth Carnaby
(British)
Casualties

Electrician
Frithjof Johansen

Mechanic
Otto Bauer

Mechanic
Vermund Lund

Mess Boy
Robert McClelland*
(British)

* Robert McClelland was found dead on the poop by the 2nd mate. He can be found on this page of the Commonwealth War Graves Comm. website (external link - Swansea [Morriston] Cemetery, section K, Grave 28). The Norwegians are commemorated at the memorial for seamen in Stavern, Norway - link below.

Back to Solør on the "Ships starting with S" page.

This company had previously had another ship named Solør - see D/S Agnes for further details.

The text on this page was compiled with the help of: "Nortraships flåte", J. R. Hegland, "The World's Merchant Fleets 1939", R. W. Jordan, "Sjøforklaringer fra 2. verdenskrig", Volume II, Norwegian Maritime Museum, and misc. (ref. My sources).

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