Danish naval pow. help

Discussion in 'The War at Sea' started by lanevitt, Feb 24, 2010.

  1. lanevitt

    lanevitt Junior Member

    Hello all.

    please can you help me...This covers both mechant naval topics, and POW topics, so here goes...My father in law told me how he found out about his fathers war story. sadly after his dad had died, he had kept it a secret all his life. the only info he had was a few bits of paper from his fathers belongings.

    The papers tell of a Danish merchant seaman (Helge Toftum larsen) aged 24 years.he had served on the S.S. MIONEA and at some point had been interned in a concentration camp in Oran on the 10th September 1941.
    he was able to escape from the camp in a small sailing boat, and make his way to almeria Spain. he was taken from there to Gibraltar on the EMPIRE SEDGE on the 15th October 1941 as a distessed seaman.
    He was than put aboard the EMPIRE SNIPE bound for the UK.

    Can anyone shed any light on any of the events, ships etc...?

    many thanks Andrew.
  2. Peter Clare

    Peter Clare Very Senior Member

    Hello Andrew,

    Welcome to the forum.

    I can't help all that much with your request, you need our MN expert Hugh MacLean for the details on the ships. I expect Hugh will be along soon to add to my meager response.

    As for the cargo ship Empire Snipe 2,497 tons (Ministry of War Transport. Sir W. Reardon Smith & Sons) She was damaged by limpet mines attached to the hull by enemy divers while berthed at the North Mole, Gibraltar on 14 July 1942. This comes from 'Britain's Sea War' - Young........

    Wishing you luck with your research

  3. Billy McGee

    Billy McGee Senior Member

    Possibly the 1927 built passenger cargo ship MEONIA (A/S Det Ostasiatiske Kompagni) The ship had been part of the 17 ship Convoy 7P, which left Marseilles on the 19th June 1940 for Oran. The ship was commandeered by the French Navy and renamed SAINTE EDITH. The ship was taken back by the Allies in 1943 and returned to her former name, arriving at Liverpool in the 41 ship Convoy MKS-11 from Bone.
  4. Hugh MacLean

    Hugh MacLean Senior Member

    Hello Andrew and welcome

    EMPIRE SNIPE arrived in Gib on 16th October and departed 22 Oct in convoy HG75 for the UK. There may be a mention in the ships official logbook of passengers and DBS, a term for distressed seamen, carried.

    The official log of EMPIRE SNIPE official number 167585 for 1941 should be held in piece BT 381/1700

    Also the official logbook of EMPIRE SEDGE official number 168928 for 1941 should be held in piece BT 381/1729

    I would not expect too much information in these files possibly just mentioned by name as being aboard the vessel on passage.

    Some more info that may be useful
    The movement card for MEONIA is held in piece BT 389/39 and can be downloaded from TNA for £3.50 this should give her movements throughout the war period.

    Similarly the movement card for EMPIRE SEDGE held in piece BT 389/11
    And EMPIRE SNIPE held in piece BT 389/11

  5. lanevitt

    lanevitt Junior Member

    Thanks all for your input. Its a great start.
  6. Smudger Jnr

    Smudger Jnr Our Man in Berlin


    Hello and welcome to the forum.

    I wish you well with your research.

  7. lanevitt

    lanevitt Junior Member

    Thanks Hugh for the information and links you provided... i went to the national Archives website and paid my £3.50 for the movement card of the Meonia.BT 389/39. It came back with the movement card for a ship called the Mimosa... is this correct, had the ship changed names at one point. OR more than likley i've done something wrong ?
  8. Hugh MacLean

    Hugh MacLean Senior Member

    If you clicked the link that I gave in #4 you should have received the movement card for MEONIA

    I suggest you email Documents Online and advise them you have been given the wrong ship. MEONIA and MIMOSA are both in the same file so I suggest it is a mistake by TNA. They should rectify that without any problem,

  9. lanevitt

    lanevitt Junior Member

    Thanks for the link Hugh, It took me directly to the document i needed. now for some detective work on the dates. See if it matches up with what is known about my father inlaws dad.

    thanks again


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