Nils Henry Andersen, 1907–1943 (aged 36 years)
This note describe the final fate of Nils Henry Andersen. More information and further links can be found at the website www,Warsailors.com established and maintained by Siri Holm Larson who has done a fantastic job of documenting what happened to Norwegian ships during World War II.
M/T Scotia Updated Febr. 15-2010
To M/T Scotia on the "Ships starting with S" page.
Survivors & Casualties List
To Statements given at the inquiry
Owner: Lorentzen's Skibs-A/S Manager: Lorentzens Rederi Co.,Oslo Tonnage: 9972 gt, 14 900 tdwt. Call Sign: LKDN
Built by Schiffbau & Maschinefabrik Bremer Vulkan, Vegesack, Germany in 1939.
Captain: Karl Hjalmar Hansen. Her captain when new was Paulus Eriksen, who became ill in 1943, at which point K. H. Hansen took over - here's a (Norwegian) Guestbook message from Captain Eriksen's granddaughter, who adds that her grandfather died in 1944 and was buried at Rookwood Cemetary in Sydney.
Related items on this website: Merchant Marine Prisoners of War has information on Norwegian seamen in Japanese camps (including the captain of Scotia). A message from the son of one of the survivors of Scotia (in my Guestbook). Message from the nephew of a casualty - Norwegian Guestbook. Another related message in Guestbook Olaf Haakonsen's letter to his brother - One of the survivors expresses his disappointment in Nortraship and The Norwegian State, with regard to the treatment of some of the survivors during the time following the sinking of Scotia. (The letter is in Norwegian). Guestbook message from the son of Scotia's 2nd mate.
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 March-1940 to Nov.-1943: (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 several voyages are missing.
Departure From To Arrival Convoy Remarks 1940 March 24 Abadan Capetown Apr. 12 Independent A. Hague says: Traded P Gulf/India/E Africa to July 29. Missing voyages, Page 1 July 31 Beira Singapore – Independent – Aug. 24 Singapore Fremantle Sept. 1 Independent – Sept. 4 Fremantle Adelaide Sept. 9 Independent – Sept. 12 Adelaide Portland, Vic Sept. 14 Independent – Sept. 15 Portland, Vic Palembang – Independent Page 1 gives arrival Sept. 26. Oct. 2 Singapore Sydney, N.S.W. Oct. 17 Independent Via Thursday Island (Page 1) Oct. 19 Sydney, N.S.W. Newcastle, N.S.W. Oct. 20 Independent – Oct. 23 Newcastle, N.S.W. Sourabaya Nov. 5 Independent Via Thursday Island (Page 1) Nov. 9 Sourabaya Singapore – Independent – Nov. 16 Singapore Sydney, N.S.W. Dec. 1 Independent Via Thursday Island (Page 1) Dec. 4 Sydney, N.S.W. Newcastle, N.S.W. Dec. 4 Independent – Dec. 6 Newcastle, N.S.W. Singapore – Independent Via Thursday Island (Page 1) Dec. 24 Singapore Fremantle Jan. 3-1941 Independent – 1941 Jan. 6 Fremantle Adelaide Jan. 12 Independent – Jan. 14 Adelaide Melbourne Jan. 15 Independent – Jan. 16 Melbourne Tanjong Gelang Jan. 29 Independent (Again, see also Page 1) Febr. 4 Singapore Yokohama Febr. 19 Independent – Febr. 21 Yokohama Los Angeles March 9 Independent – March 15 Los Angeles Manila Apr. 10 Independent On to Cebu Apr. 15 (Page 2). Apr. 17 Cebu Tanjong Oeban – Independent – Apr. 23 Tanjong Oeban Auckland May 13 Independent Via Thursday Island (Page 2) May 17 Auckland Los Angeles June 5 Independent – June 7 Los Angeles San Francisco June 9 Independent – June 11 San Francisco Los Angeles June 12 Independent – June 13 Los Angeles Manila July 7 Independent – July 11 Manila Cebu – Independent Page 2 gives arrival July 12. July 13 Cebu Singapore July 17 Independent – July 20 Singapore Sydney, N.S.W. Aug. 5 Independent Via Thursday Island (Page 2) Aug. 6 Sydney, N.S.W. Newcastle, N.S.W. Aug. 6 Independent – Aug. 11 Newcastle, N.S.W. Brisbane Aug. 13 Independent – Aug. 15 Brisbane Gladstone Aug. 16 Independent – Aug. 17 Gladstone Cairns Aug. 19 Independent – Aug. 19 Cairns Singapore Sept. 2 Independent Via Thursday Island and Palembang (Page 2) Sept. 3 Singapore Hong Kong Sept. 8 Independent – Sept. 12 Hong Kong Palembang Sept. 18 Independent – Sept. 19 Palembang Singapore Sept. 21 Independent Notional sailing date Sept. 23 Singapore Colombo Sept. 29 Independent – Oct. 3 Colombo Singapore Oct. 12 Independent Via Soesoe (Page 2) Oct. 13 Singapore Singapore Oct. 19 Independent A. Hague says: Voyage unknown (Page 2 indicates Palembang) Oct. 20 Singapore Sydney, N.S.W. Nov. 3 Independent Via Thursday Island (Page 2) Nov. 6 Sydney, N.S.W. Townsville Nov. 10 Independent – Nov. 14 Townsville Palembang Nov. 24 Independent Via Thursday Island (Page 2) Nov. 28 Tanjung Oeban Seychelles – Independent – Dec. 12 Seychelles Lourenço Marques Dec. 20 Independent – Dec. 24 Lourenço Marques Abadan Jan. 8-1942 Independent – 1942 Jan. 11 Abadan Karachi Jan. 15 Independent – Jan. 18 Karachi Bombay Jan. 23 Independent – Febr. 28 Bombay Abadan March 5 Independent – March 8 Abadan Bombay March 14 Independent – March 22 Bombay Abadan March 27 Independent – March 30 Abadan Karachi Apr. 3 Independent – Apr. 6 Karachi Abadan Apr. 15 Independent – Apr. 17 Abadan Melbourne May 15 Independent – June 10 Melbourne Talara July 7 Independent – July 9 Talara Sydney, N.S.W. Aug. 12 Independent – Aug. 30 Sydney, N.S.W. Los Angeles Sept. 22 Independent – Oct. 3 Los Angeles Sydney, N.S.W. Oct. 26 Independent – Oct. 29 Sydney, N.S.W. Newcastle, N.S.W. Oct. 30 Independent – Nov. 2 Newcastle, N.S.W. Los Angeles Nov. 26 Independent – Dec. 5 El Segundo Sydney, N.S.W. Dec. 29 Independent – 1943 Jan. 1 Sydney, N.S.W. Townsville Jan. 6 Independent – Jan. 7 Townsville Cairns Jan. 8 Independent – Jan. 11 Cairns Brisbane Jan. 14 Independent – Jan. 14 Brisbane Los Angeles Febr. 6 Independent – Febr. 12 Los Angeles Sydney, N.S.W. March 9 Independent – March 12 Sydney, N.S.W. Brisbane March 15 Independent – March 17 Brisbane Los Angeles Apr. 11 Independent – Apr. 28 Los Angeles Adelaide May 28 Independent – May 30 Adelaide Port Pirie June 1 Independent – June 2 Port Pirie Fremantle June 9 Independent – June 12 Fremantle Geraldton – Independent Page 3 gives arrival June 13. June 17 Geraldton Bahrein July 5 Independent – July 9 Bahrein Bandar Abbas – Independent – July 12 Bandar Abbas – – PA 45 Detached July 18. For Durban. Convoy available at PA 45 (external link) July 18 Detached from PA 45 Durban Aug. 1 Independent – Aug. 1 Durban Lourenço Marques Aug. 3 Independent – Aug. 8 Lourenço Marques Durban Aug. 10 Independent – Aug. 13 Durban Beira Aug. 18 DN 56 A. Hague says: Escorted throughout. Convoy available at DN 56 (external link) Aug. 25 Beira Abadan Sept. 8 Independent – Sept. 12 Abadan Bandar Abbas – Independent – Sept. 16 Bandar Abbas Bombay Sept. 21 PB 56 Convoy available at PB 56 (external link) Sept. 24 Bombay Cochin Sept. 28 BM 67 Convoy available at BM 67 (external link) Oct. 5 Cochin Bombay Oct. 7 Independent – Oct. 9 Bombay Bandar Abbas Oct. 14 BP 98 Convoy available at BP 98 (external link) Oct. 14 Bandar Abbas Abadan Oct. 15 Independent – Oct. 18 Abadan Bandar Abbas – Independent – Oct. 28 Bandar Abbas Bombay Nov. 1 PB 61 Convoy available at PB 61 (external link) Nov. 9 Bombay Bandar Abbas Nov. 14 BP 102 Convoy available at BP 102 (external link) See also Page 4 Nov. 14 Bandar Abbas Bahrein Nov. 16 Independent – Nov. 18 Bahrein Bandar Abbas – Independent – Nov. 19 Bandar Abbas – – PB 64 A. Hague says: Detached Nov. 25. Convoy available at PB 64 (external link) Nov. 25 Detached from PB 64 – – Independent Sunk – See "Final Fate" below
Notes: When war broke out in Norway on Apr. 9-1940, Scotia was on her way from Abadan to Cape Town, arriving Apr. 12, having departed Abadan on March 24 - see Page 1. Her 1941 voyages also start on this document and continue on Page 2, which also lists a few early 1942 voyages, while the rest are shown on Page 3 (it'll be noticed that she had quite a long stay in Bombay at the beginning of that year, and also spent a few weeks in Melbourne that spring). Additionally, the latter page has some 1943 voyages, as does Page 4. Convoy information for some of these is available within the Voyage Record above.
Final Fate - 1943: Scotia, on charter to Vacuum Oil Comany, departed Bahrein on Nov. 18-1943 with a cargo of 13 800 tons diesel oil for Melbourne, Australia, intended for the replenishment of British warships there. Her tanks were full, except No. 12 and No. 17, which were empty. She had a crew of 40. A memorandum based on a summary of statements by survivors (see Sources at the end of this page) says she was in a convoy until outside the Gulf of Oman, then continued alone on Nov. 20, while a report presented at the subsequent maritime hearings indicates she was sailing alone from the start. According to Page 4 of the archive documents, she left Bandar Abbas on Nov. 19 (her arrival there from Bahrein is not given), and this fits in with the fact that A. Hague has included her among the ships in Convoy PB 64, which left Bandar Abbas for Bombay that day (external link). The Norwegian Brajara, Havkong, Høegh Scout, Høegh Silverlight, Storanger and Thorshavn are also listed in this convoy, as is the Panamanian Norvinn, which had Norwegian managers and is, therefore, included under the N's on this website. A. Hague says Scotia was detached from the convoy on Nov. 25.
At 17:25 GCT on Nov. 27-1943, she was torpedoed, starboard side near the after mast by the Japanese submarine I-37 (Otani), position 03S 69 03E. At the time of attack she was on a course 179° true, sailing at a speed of 12 knots in clear weather, smooth seas and good visibility, wind northwest force 3; the sun had just set on the starboard quarter, no other ships were in sight. 1 lookout was on the bridge, another in the crow's nest. Earlier that same day, at 12:30 GCT, an object, believed to be some sort of craft on the surface, had been sighted from the crow's nest, and at the same time smoke had been seen on the horizon by those who were on the bridge. The same thing happened again later that day, and at 15:45 a bearing was taken on the smoke and found to be 217° true, but nothing further was seen until she was struck by the torpedo about the bulkhead between No. 13 and No. 14 tanks.
The explosion blew a section of the starboard plating out from the ship so that a section beginning at the bulkhead between No. 12 and No. 13 tanks was hinged at the bulkhead between No. 14 tank and the engine room, causing the ship to swing sharply to starboard, and she listed 10°-15° to starboard. The deck buckled 8' at the starboard rail, the starboard aft lifeboat was destroyed, the mainmast snapped and the engine room bulkhead buckled but remained tight. Steering gear was rendered inoperable as was the engine room telegraph, but the engines were secured in 2 minutes.
3 crew members abandoned ship immediately after the first torpedo had struck. As soon as the ship stopped, the remainder of the crew, except 1st Engineer Josef Amundsen and Radio Operator Kaare Kristiansen left the ship in 3 boats (and 2 rafts?) on orders from Captain Hansen. The port aft lifeboat capsized and 3 men ended up in the water, but they were later picked up by the starboard lifeboat which already had 7 men in it. The port motor lifeboat had 20, while the captain and 7 men were in the 3rd boat. The radio operator sent out distress calls, while the captain's boat waited alongside, the other 2 boats being further away in the dark. At 17:45 the track of another torpedo was seen approaching, which detonated in the engine room, also from the starboard side. The ship broke in two about midships and the stern section sank straight down (the forward section was still floating when last seen, burning furiously, having been shelled by the sub at 17:55).
The submarine now came up, asking for the captain who was subsequently ordered to come on board. His right arm had been injured when the torpedo hit and he was unable to climb on board unaided, so his men were ordered to put a line attached to a meat hook around him, but as he was hoisted on board the knot in the line broke so that the hook penetrated his upper arm, and he was pulled screaming into the submarine. He was later taken to Japan, where he was held in a prison camp at Fukuoka until the end of the war. (See Fukuoka POW Camp # 1 - Captain Hansen is included on a this roster and on this page, all these are external links. See also my page about William Strachan and my page Merchant Marine Prisoners of War).
Next, the Japanese wanted the radio operator; nobody said anything. The 1st mate was also wanted, nobody had seen him, he was assumed to have gone down with the after part of the ship. The lifeboat that the captain had been in was ordered to stay alongside, while the other 2 boats, which were hidden by Scotias forepart managed to slip away in the dark. The forepart was now shelled, and the radio operator quickly jumped overboard, then swam across to a door floating by.
The sub was described as of about 1700 gt, painted dark brown with no streaks or stripes, with a small, oval shaped conning tower, one gun aft of conning tower, size estimated at 4", 5" or 6", raked bow and sloping stern with a peculiar flat area forward of conning tower, thought to be a catapult. No deck gear or masts observed. Member of sub's crew who asked for the captain spoke English badly. Sub was manned by Japanese who wore dungarees, and was last seen moving slowly on the surface on an easterly course at 19:30, Nov. 27.
Skipping now to the 2 lifeboats that got away in the dark. They were connected by a line so as not to get separated in the night and set sail in a northeasterly direction, then north/northwesterly the next day. 1 of the men had been injured, and they took care of him the best they could. In the meantime, the distress calls had been heard by the British rescue services in Ceylon, and 2 Catalina aircraft and a rescue vessel were directed to the position given. That evening a Catalina came by, circled them a couple of times then dropped a package which was recovered from the water by the 2nd engineer. In a waterproof envelope there was a note reading "We have plotted your position. Steer 040° Compass to intercept HMS Okapi. Two more survivors at place of sinking. Good luck". The 2nd engineer's son has sent me a copy of this note, and underneath, the following has been added in Norwegian: "Indian Ocean Nov. 28-1943, 3 00S 69 03E" (this is the sinking position).
The 2nd engineer's son has also sent me a copy of a newspaper article entitled "Rescue Work of the Catalinas" (in The Ceylon Observer). It contains accounts of various rescue operations, then it says: "The young Flight Lieut. from Bristol, England, who piloted one of the Catalinas mentioned in the previous story (referring to one of the other stories in the article) again played a leading part in the fine rescue of survivors from a Norwegian tanker. (His wife is also a pilot. She ferries aircraft in England). The second pilot was a squadron leader from Newham near Gloucester who was captain-elect of his County's cricket club. Twenty-five of the survivors were in two life boats roped together and in another boat was a Norwegian A/B with the ship's dog which he had rescued. The dog was smothered in oil but soon recovered. Honour and credit is due to the ship's wireless operator who, although the vessel was under shellfire from a Japanese submarine, gallantly returned forrard and continued to wireless for help until he was killed. The Catalina, after a gruelling search of many hours finally located the survivors and directed the naval rescue ship to the spot."
The men were picked up by HMS Okapi in position 03S 70E on Nov. 29 (here's a picture of Okapi reaching the lifeboats, also from Jan Haakonsen, the 2nd engineer's son), which immediately initiated a search for the captain's boat. They found it. 1 single man was in it, along with the ship's dog. This lone survivor, able seaman Thorbjørn Kristiansen, age 23 had a heart wrenching tale to tell, as follows:
Kristiansen had been on look-out duty in the foremast when the attack occurred. He went midships, where he was ordered to help launch the port lifeboat, whereupon it was let go half way down while waiting for further orders from the captain. In addition to Kristiansen, 1st Mate Nils Henry Andersen, 3rd Mate Arnfinn Strøm, 4th Engineer Fritjof A. Mehlum, Pumpman Bjarne Omdahl, Saloon Boy G. F. Dias and Ordinary Seaman Victor Purdy were in this boat. When the 2nd torpedo hit the captain was on the boatdeck, and the radio operator was also still on board. The captain called to him 2 or 3 times, but as the ship was sinking the boat had to pull away. It was about 25-30 yards away from the wreck when the captain saw the radio operator come down and the captain told him to jump overboard, which he did. At that moment they saw the submarine come up so they had to pull away from the ship, the captain saying they would have to pick up the radio operator later (he had a lifebelt on).
As mentioned, the captain was taken on board the sub and that was the last they saw of him. Suddenly, the sub started shooting at the lifeboat. Kristiansen immediately understood what was happening and threw himself backwards into the water and swam underneath the lifeboat. When he came up on the other side, 1st Mate Andersen and 3rd Mate Strøm were also in the water, the former being wounded in his left leg, the latter in his shoulder. The 1st mate was ready to give up but the 3rd mate encouraged him to "never do that". The sub kept firing and both mates were again hit. Kristiansen attempted to keep himself underneath the lifeboat, then hid on the port side of the boat. The firing continued, he heard the engine of the sub and saw the smoke, then observed the sub moving around to get a good look, so he dove underneath the boat again. When he resurfaced he saw the 1st and 3rd mates floating on the other side of the lifeboat, then a bullet hit the 1st mate in the forehead; Kristiansen says "I was all alone, I thought the only chance I had was to get away from the submarine because they kept shooting on the lifeboat".
Being a good swimmer, he managed to swim underneath the submarine until he came up on the other side, where he held on unseen until the sub submerged. He waited till it was far away, then swam back to the lifeboat which had 4 dead bodies in it. He was utterly exhausted, but was eventually able to roll them overboard, though to his horror all the blood from the bodies attracted sharks. He and the dog stayed in the damaged lifeboat overnight, in water up to his waist. The next day he managed to plug up the bullet holes and bail the boat. Having found a mast in the boat, he got it in place with the intention of trying to set sail, but first he decided to climb up to take a look across the ocean and, spotting a periscope, he quickly got the mast down then wrapped himself in the sail. After a while he heard a sub come up, then voices - miraculously he was not discovered and the sub took off again, but he stayed wrapped up in the sail until darkness fell.
Another night was spent alone on the ocean, with the shaking and frightened dog on his lap for company; all he could do now was wait. In the afternoon of Nov. 30 he was spotted by Okapi and reunited with his 30 shipmates. Less than an hour later the whaler also found one of Scotia's rafts; on it was the dead body of the 1st engineer, the bullet holes in the raft telling the tale. The radio operator was not found, he had been seen by the Catalina floating on a door, waving to them. A rubber dinghy was dropped down to him and he was last observed swimming towards it, but the Catalina had to return to base due to shortage of fuel. Okapi later found the empty dinghy, the radio operator had probably been injured by the bullets and had not had enough strength left in him to reach it. The 1st engineer was buried in the way of the sea, sewn into canvas and covered with the Norwegian flag. Steward Peder Stålhane spoke a few words for him.
Final count: 8 died, 32 survived, 1 of whom was taken prisoner and tortured.
Okapi then headed for her base, Addu Atoll, Maldive Islands (about 750 n. miles southwest of Ceylon), landing the survivors there on Dec. 1. Able Seaman Gerhard Larsen, who was seriously injured having been on the aft boat deck when the torpedo hit and was struck down by the boat davit, was admitted to a hospital, while the remaining survivors, including the dog were transferred to a French troopship and taken to Colombo, departing Dec 3, arriving on Dec. 6. Representatives from Nortraship met them there, and the men were given lodgings at the local Seamen's Club where they were provided with some clothes (British pilot uniforms!) and after the maritime hearings* were all over they joined other ships. Thorbjørn Kristiansen and 5 others from Scotia went on board M/S Norbryn on Dec. 23, but whether they actually joined that ship or were just given passage with her is unclear.
* The hearings were held in Colombo on Dec. 21-1943 with 2nd Mate Blindheim, 2nd Engineer Haakonsen, 3rd Engineer Storlie, Carpenter Rønning, Able Seaman Kristiansen and Able Seaman Paton (helmsman) appearing.
Continue to their individual Statements given at the inquiry
Having read somewhere that Okapi was a former Norwegian whale catcher, I posted a query to my Ship Forum and here are some responses - scroll down on that page (but is this the same Okapi?): 1st response: "I found a HMS Okapi, 246 tons built in 1929. Previous name A.N.5. Requisitioned in October 1940 as an Auxiliary Patrol vessel. Returned in December 1945". 2nd response: "A-N-5 was British, but with Norwegian owner. Build at Aker mek. Verksted, Oslo 1929. Dim. 116,8x23,8x13,2 ft. Call-sign. GFYP. Owner Falkland Shipsowner Ltd. (Bruun & von der Lippe,Tønsberg.) The owner also had A-N-1 x-Granada, A-N-2 x-Lanza, A-N-4 x-Sonja". The response to another query on my Ship Forum says the following: "AN.5 was requisitioned by the Royal Navy in November 1940 and employed as a patrol vessel in India; she was given the name Okapi in January 1941. All info. I have shows her remaining in naval service until September 1945". The message adds: "Other whalers were also requisitioned at the same time, all serving in eastern waters: AN.1 renamed Sambhur (Jan '41) and wrecked at Colombo 5 May 1942. AN.4 renamed Impala (Jan'41) returned mercantile April 1946. AN.2 had been requisitioned in November 1939; not given a name and sunk by mine 8 November 1940 off Falmouth".
Scotia's Gunner Arne Rasmussen Storebø and Ordinary Seaman Thor Larsen Ringdahl turned in a report on Febr. 7-1944, and the public heard about the incident through an American radio interview with Storebø. Allied authorities had been reluctant to believe that such atrocities could actually take place, but the Scotia incident removed any doubts. Kristiansen had even been able to take note of the identity markings on the Japanese sub so it was clear from the start that I-37 had been the culprit. The British government sent a protest to the Japanese government on June 5-1944. 5 British ships were mentioned in the note to Foregin Minister Shigemitsu. They were S/S Daisy Møller, sunk Dec. 13-1943, survivors in lifeboats shot (2 Norwegians are said to have been killed, namely 1st Mate Harald Gotfred Høyer and Martin Olsen Aanes, but according to the Stavern Memorial, Aanes died during a bomb attack on the ship on May 19-1943 - Gotfred Høyer is also commemorated, both links are external) - S/S British Chivalry, torpedoed Febr. 22-1944, 2 lifeboats and 4 rafts fired upon - S/S Sutley, torpedoed Febr. 26-1944, surviviors clinging to debris and rafts shot at - S/S Ascot, sunk Febr. 29-1944, 44 of the 52 survivors shot - Nancy Møller, March 18-1944. The Netherlands had also protested the brutal treatment of survivors from S/S Tjisalak, March 26-1944. The British mentioned this in their own note as well, because British citizens were among the victims of that massacre. After several more notes without any kind of response, a reply finally came from Foreign Minister Shigemitsu on Nov. 28-1944, saying that "thorough investigations of each alleged case have been conducted, showing clearly that Japanese submarines had nothing to do with the incidents". See also the external link further down on this page re. the American Jean Nicolet, sunk July 2-1944.
T. Kristiansen served on 3 more Norwegian ships before he paid off for good in Newcastle on Aug. 2-1945. He was already very sick from Tuberculosis at that time. He got married and had a family but died in 1951 before he had turned 31. His wife was then 23, and he left an 8 month old son behind.
I've come across this external page at the Australian War Memorial re. Åge Bergdahl (see crew list below) - saying (among other things) the following: "Before the war he worked on the merchant ship Kongsdal from 27 May 1937 to 9 January 1939, working his way up from Engine boy to Motorman (Mechanic). He then served as Motorman on the following vessels: Brattdal (1 April 1939 to 21 December 1940), Bramora (20 February 1941 to 7 June 1941) and Tiradentes (21 June 1941 to 28 February 1942). On 27 February 1942 Bergdahl signed on to the merchant vessel, Scotia". Then: "After maritime hearings into the sinking Bergdahl joined the Tai Yin from 27 December 1943 to 31 January 1944. He then went on to serve aboard the British Colonial Express (4 April 1944 to 10 February 1945), Tai Yang again (26 March to 25 August 1945), back to the British Colonial Express (as Assistant Engineer 28 September 1945 to 8 July 1946 - this should probably be British Columbia Express) and finally with the Tricolor, again as Motorman, from 14 November 1946 to 28 January 1947. After the war Bergdahl settled and married in Australia. He became an Australian citizen in 1956".
Crew List: A list of names were received from Jan M. Haakonsen, whose father Olaf Haakonsen was the 2nd engineer on board Scotia. The names are taken from his diary. Additional names were found in "Sjøforklaringer fra 2. verdenskrig", Volume II, Norwegian Maritime Museum.
The Captain was taken prisoner - again, see my POW page and this external page about Fukuoka POW Camp # 1.
* The Norwegian Viva also had a Karl Hustvedt - same person?
Survivors Captain Karl Hjalmar Hansen Prisoner
2nd Mate* Reidar Blindheim
Carpenter Peder Rønning Boatswain Tore Solberg Able Seaman Lorang Brekke Able Seaman Fredrik Jonassen Able Seaman Thorbjørn Kristiansen Able Seaman Gerhard Larsen Able Seaman/Gunner Arne Rasmussen Storebø Able Seaman/Gunner Kjell Norstrand Able Seaman/Gunner Louis Johnsen Ordinary Seaman Donald F. Paton (Freemantle) Ordinary Seaman Thor Ringdahl Ordinary Seaman Arthur Pearson (Parson?) (Shetland) Able Seaman Tom Gammond (Freemantle) 2nd Engineer* Olaf Haakonsen 3rd Engineer Jørgen Storlie Electrician (Assistant) Per A. Haughorn (Haughom?) Mechanic Åge Bergdahl Mechanic Harry Eisen (Halifax) Mechanic Karl Hustvedt* Mechanic Søren Jensen Mechanic Rolf Nilsen Mechanic Odne Øvland Greaser Patrick Green (Glasgow) Steward Peder Stålhane Cook Johan Pehrsson (Danish) Galley Boy Avelino Diaz (From Goa) Mess Boy Pedro Ferro (From Goa) Mess Boy Rodolfo Diaz (From Goa) Mess Boy Wong Leong (Chinese) Mess Boy James Tallis (From Goa) *Guestbook message from the son of Scotia's 2nd mate. Guestbook message from O. Haakonsen's son (he had been on board, without a break, since Apr.-1939). See also Olaf Haakonsen's letter to his brother (in Norwegian) Casualties: SR = Shot on raft SL = Shot in or near the lifeboat † 1st Mate* Nils Henry Andersen SL † 3d Mate Arnfinn Strøm SL † Radio Operator Kåre Kristiansen † Ordinary Seaman Victor Purdy (Capetown) SL † 1st Engineer Josef F. H. Amundsen SR † 4th Engineer Fritjof A. Mehlum SL † Pumpman** Bjarne Omdahl SL † Saloon Boy G. F. Dias SL (From Goa) * See this message in my Guestbook (Norwegian) ** Guestbook message from his nephew (Norwegian text). One of my books also lists a mechanic by the name of Franz Otterbeck as one of the casualties. However, he had died in an accident on May 23-1943 (in the Pacific - buried at sea). According to Page 3 of the archive documents, Scotia was on her way from Los Angeles to Adelaide on that date.
Related external links: Stavern Memorial commemorations - Captain Paulus Eriksen is also commemorated at this memorial. Franz Otterbeck, mentioned above, is also commemorated.
The S.S. Jean Nicolet Another account of Japanese atrocities (also mentions the Tjisalak). This is a section of the US Naval Armed Guard website, and source used is "A Careless Word, a Needless Sinking" by Arthur Moore, 1998. Survivors and casualties are listed by name.
Back to M/T Scotia on the "Ships starting with S" page.
Other ships named Scotia through the years: Haugesund (Valdemar Skogland) had a steam ship by the name Scotia in 1937, ex Swedish Ring, originally delivered in 1888 as Lord Roseberry for British owner, 1182 gt. Sold 1937 to Scotia Corp. and sailed as Panamanian Diana. ("Våre gamle skip").
Denmark lost a steamship by this name on Dec. 7-1939, built 1924, 2400 gt - torpedoed and sunk by U-23 on Dec. 7-1939 on a voyage Copenhagen-England. There was also a British steamship by the name Scotia, used as auxiliary transport during the Dunkirk evacuations, built 1921, 3454 gt - bombed and sunk by German aircraft on June 1-1940, with the loss of 32 crew and between 200 and 300 French troops. (Britian had previously lost 2 other Scotia's, the first in a collision back in 1889, the other was wrecked in 1904). An American steamship named Scotia, built 1919, 2649 gt was wrecked after running ashore off Alcan Cove, Aleutian Islands during a storm on Dec. 23-1943. ("Dictionary of Disasters at Sea").
Roger W. Jordan lists a Swedish Scotia in his "Allied Merchant Fleets", built 1919, 1874 gt. Struck a mine and sank on Apr. 12-1942.
A former Norwegian vessel, the seal catcher D/S Hekla of Sandefjord (built 1872) was sold in 1902 to the Scottish Polar researcher Bruce and renamed Scotia. Later in cargo service England-France, lost during WW I. (Damp - Dampskipets æra i Vestfold).
The text on this page was compiled with the help of: "Nortraships flåte", J. R. Hegland, "Handelsflåten i krig" - book 4, "Krigsseiler - Krig, hjemkomst, oppgjør", Guri Hjeltnes, "Ingen Nåde", Kristian Ottosen, "Sjøforklaringer fra 2. verdenskrig", Norwegian Maritime Museum, Volume II, a Summary of Statements by Survivors to Navy Department, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Washington, D.C., signed Robert G. Fulton, Lieut. USNR (Febr. 11-1944), a Supplement to Summary of Statements by Survivors, dated May 12-1944, signed B.A. Conard, Lt. (jg), USNR, both received from Tony Cooper, England and misc. - (see My sources).