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Post by davidships » Wed May 24, 2023 1:32 pm

According to U-boat-Net an Italian tug MARIA PIA was shelled on 22 May 1918 by UB-50 while on voyage between Melilla and Oran with passengers; Capt Francisco Cappano and four others were killed, but the vessel survived.

180grt 111nrt,
built 1891 W[igham] Richardson & Co, Newcastle (iron)
steam compound 148ihp 25nhp by G Anderson & Co, Glasgow (engine made, with new boiler, in 1905)
owner Impresa Geometra Giovanni Fogliotti (reg Napoli)

She appears under that name in Lloyd's Register 1912-1923 only, without more detail (except in 1923 without owner, and French flag, reg Oran - I believe that Fogliotti also had a business there).
also in the Dec 1914 Italian mercantile navy list with same details (but not in 1896 or 1897 though other Fogliotti tugs were included - but they are the only three editions I have seen). None of these give any previous name, nor any indication of why the engine needed replacing in 1905 .

An account of the action (in Spanish, but unfortunately a very poor reproduction of a newspaper report) claims that the tug was built for Fogliotti, though I take that with a pich of salt. It seems that some time after WW1 she was converted to a dredger at Oran and ank on 24 May 1927 after a boiler explosion. ... illa-1918/

But I am still stuck on her origin. There's nothing to match on the Wigham Richardson yard list, though there are a few yard numbers missing in and around 1891.

Any ideas?

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