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  #1  
Old 6th June 2017, 02:23
Lucy Knight England Lucy Knight is offline
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Books relating to seafaring and associated industries

Can't find a books forum or sub forum so putting thus under arts forum.

Interesting book I recent purchased is about the history of the oil industry around Maracaibo lake, Nene Grande etc Also includes about Netherland Antilles, Aruba, Curacao.

Name of book
The Enduring legacy -
Oil Culture and Society Venezuela

By Miguel Tinker Salas

Also covers WW2 time and pesky Uboat activity hitting the Mosquito run convoys with photos. Book spells out all the dynamics of the expat community in early days for oil company personnel and how it developed. eg Caribbean Shell etc.oil,

Author was brought up in Mene Grande and became university acedemic. Very factual book.

Can be bought as hard copy bookshops, Amazon and also iBooks.
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Old 6th June 2017, 18:07
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Thanks for that information Lucy. My late Dad spoke fondly of his days visiting that part of the World both before and during the War. He was an apprentice in Shell (Anglo Saxon Petroleum,) and later served most of the rest of the War in Eagle Oil tankers. He always wanted to make a return visit to Curacao, but never did.

I shall get a copy to see what it was all about!

Regards.
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Old 6th June 2017, 22:04
Lucy Knight England Lucy Knight is offline
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Dart S
I expect you are aware that the Eagle Oil tankers which Shell had share in, in early days, and took over early 60s changing their names yo nes of Shells are all listed on Shell Helderline site. The Eagle oil tankers were prefixed with San. If you access Shell Helderline site, click on tankers top left, then click on S they should be listed along with some names on crew lists. Kess Helder who owns site, and joined SH a few days ago, also has private collection of more photos and Fleet News.

Also if your late father was on any Western Approaches convoys they were controlled from early 40s from Derby House Liverpool. All the names of ships I believe are on wall. Original room where they plotted on huge map still there along with map.just google Derby House Western Approaches combined convoy control Liverpool. Plenty of photos. I believe the communication equipment was restored in recent years. Original 1930s building outside. Offices above ground but wartime convoy control bunkers with 8' concrete ceiling still there.

There are also convoy reports uploaded on internet. I have spotted the names of Shell tankers and Eagle oil ones on them
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Old 6th June 2017, 22:46
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I'm going to have to get up that way and have a look at that. Not so long ago I read a non-fiction book called 'Convoy' written by historical writer Martin Middlebrook. It almost reads like a novel although often very grim and heart breaking.

It is based on convoys SC122 and HX229 crossing the Atlantic in March 1943, seen as something of a turning point in the Battle of the Atlantic, one of the most critical battles of World War Two. It is written in the very detailed style of Martin Middlebrook with maps and charts but never loses sight of the fact this is about people and ships and planes and the horror of war. Also it examines the battle from both sides of the conflict.

I think next time I'm up in the Midlands I'll get a train to Liverpool and have a look at that museum.
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Old 6th June 2017, 23:11
Lucy Knight England Lucy Knight is offline
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That War Museum as it is called is on trip advisor. Open only in summer months. However there is a phone number on one of the sites and lady answers at home in months when closed . She was very friendly and willing to give info. Apparently it is better known about over pond than in UK. No audio visual displaysor that sort of thing. Apparently one has to ring doorbell and she answers. Then you show yourself around apparently. One ex R/O I know from N West had problems finding it and left car at station and used taxi to find it. So worth finding out location ahead. There are photos on internet.
Before combined convoy control was moved to ZLiverpool on direct orders Winston Churchill it was at Plymouth. Mountwise. That was before they but bunker there. Nothing tobshow now and nothing comes uo on internet.
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Old 10th June 2017, 10:05
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We don't mention Curacao in polite company. Many on this site will deny ever having been there.
Cocks have crowed three times, many times.
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Old 12th June 2017, 00:18
Lucy Knight England Lucy Knight is offline
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A good book for anyone who worked for Canadian Pacific or CP ships came out in 1981. We were offered it at a discount then. I doubt if it is in print now as publisher David and Charles no linger exists in Newton Abbot. The hardback can be obtained for internet book sales Abe books for £11.50.

It is an excellent book, full of photos and interetsting history. The author worked in London office and had access to the archives. The author wrote other books I haven't read. The label below takes you to site of various books he wrote for sale and the book I mentioned is a few down.




https://www.abebooks.co.uk/book-sear...r/musk-george/
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Old 13th June 2017, 00:46
Lucy Knight England Lucy Knight is offline
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Although to my knowledge this is not written in book yet,but in today's Plymouth Herald. This is the story of a Plymouth based Merchant Navy traitor who gave away info on convoys to enemy.

Much has been writtten of the bravery of those MN who served on ww2 convoys and in survivors reports (SN) eg San Emilano 1 (Eagle oil) when she would was hit, one of the radio officers volunteered to crawl through flames to release the only accessible lifeboat. Now it appears the traitors stories aret surfacing. Another MN traitor was born in Plymouth

ymouth Herald
‘The £18 traitor’: The little-known Plymouth spy hanged during WW2

By WMNAGreenwood | Posted: June 11, 2017

By Herald Reporter
‘The £18 traitor’: The little-known Plymouth spy hanged during WW2

Scott-Ford was just 21 when he was hanged
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His execution for treachery in the middle of the Second World War made headlines around the world.

Yet the name of merchant seaman Duncan Alexander Croall Scott-Ford, who was born in Plymouth, is hardly known in his home city.

And that’s despite him being regarded by MI5 as one of the most dangerous traitors ever to be brought to justice.

Read more: Plymouth's messenger pigeons were the little-known heroes of D-Day

Driven by lust, greed and the promise of riches if Germany won the war, Scott-Ford, the son of a Plymouth sailor, almost certainly caused the sinking of several ships with the loss of hundreds of lives.

His trial was held in secret at the Old Bailey. He was hanged aged just 21 at Wandsworth prison in 1942 after being found guilty of treachery.

His execution made headlines across the world. He was dubbed ‘the man who sold his country for £18’ – the cash sum he received from his Nazy spymasters.

Scott-Ford was born in Plymouth on September 4, 1921. His father died when he was 11. It’s not known what befell of his mother.

Educated at the Royal Hospital School, at Holbrook, from 1933 to 1937, he followed his father into the Royal Navy aged 16. He was posted to HMS Impregnable in Devonport in December 1937.

His downfall began in June 1939 in Tanzania where he met Ingeborg Richter, the daughter of a leading Nazi. He was 18. She was a beautiful 17-year-old.

Read more: Secret Plymouth - Inside the places off limits to the public

Later the same year he was caught passing secreting codes to a prostitute in Alexandria, dismissed from the Navy and sentenced to six months imprisonment.

But he was crucially allowed to go free when he returned to the UK and re-enlisted as a merchant seaman in Glasgow.

He would go on to have at least five meetings with German agents in foreign ports – divulging details of convoy movements which would then be targeted by German U-boats.



In return he was given women and the cash sum for which he would become infamous.

He was also promised the hand in marriage of Richter with whom he was infatuated and the prospect of running his own ship, or port, in the event that Germany triumphed.

He fell under suspicion and was followed by British spies in 1942 when his ship arrived in Lisbon, Portgual.

Read more: How history was made in Plymouth one grey Sunday night in 1967

Scott-Ford was arrested when he returned home. In his pocket was a notebook containing details of convoy routes.

At MI5’s interrogation centre, Scott-Ford finally revealed the full extent of his betrayal.

“He came here full of bombast, visualising himself an important figure in the international spy racket,” one report said. “During the course of lengthy and searching interrogation he was eventually shown to be the traitorous rat he is.



“I cannot find one single mitigating circumstance in this man’s history or attitude towards life.”

“The damage of which Scott-Ford was capable was infinite,” another added. “Death by hanging is almost too good for a sailor who will envisage the death of thousands of his shipmates without a qualm.”

At the time Scott-Ford was described as worse than Roger Casement, considered at the time to be the epitome of evil, who was convicted and hanged for high treason in 1916 for his part in planning the Easter Rising.

Read more: Mystery surrounds exact date of one of oldest pictures of Plymouth Barbican

Scott-Ford was executed in London on the morning of November 3, 1942. The Home Office the following statement as a warning to others.

“Scott-Ford was convicted under the Treachery Act at the Central Criminal Court on October 16 before a judge and jury and sentenced to death. The trial was heard in camera. Scott-Ford was represented by an eminent counsel, but did not appeal.

“This case illustrates the technique of enemy agents in Lisbon and other neutral ports in collecting information from British and Allied seamen.



“Scott-Ford at the time of his arrest was a merchant seaman aboard a British vessel making more or less regular trips between Britain and Lisbon and engaged in trade vital to the British war effort.

“When Scott-Ford was ashore in Lisbon he was approached by a stranger, who turned out to be an enemy agent, who found him ready to supply the enemy with secret information relating to the British merchant navy in return for money payments.

“Scott-Ford was paid a sum equivalent to about £18. That was all Scott-Ford received from the enemy, although a glittering prize was held out to him which lured him deeper and deeper into the blackmailing clutches of the enemy.

Read more: 15 incredible pictures showing pre-war transport in Plymouth

“Thus, when Scott-Ford returned on a second visit to Lisbon with information he had collected the Germans, instead of honouring their promises, threatened to expose him to the British authorities unless he continued to perform certain services to collect more valuable information and run greater risks in their interests.

“Some of the information Scott-Ford gave the enemy related to his own ship and thus imperilled the lives of his own shipmates. He also gave away detailed information relating to the movements of convoys between Lisbon and Britain.

“When Scott-Ford was arrested certain memoranda were found in his possession. It gave the position and names of ships and escorts in a convoy in which he returned from his last trip to Britain, also particulars of speed, course, and distances travelled and a log of the voyage and a description of the weather conditions and the amount of aircraft protection provided.



“After his arrest Scott-Ford volunteered a statement, in which he admitted having associated with persons who, he knew, engaged in espionage on behalf of the enemy, also that he made notes at the express request of those agents in order to hand them to the German espionage service on his return to Lisbon.

“Scott-Ford, on his return to England, carried out German secret service agents’ instructions by touring public houses and mixing with fellow seamen and members of the services in order to pump them for information in their possession.

“The moral to be drawn from this case was that British and Allied seamen when visiting neutral ports should be constantly on guard against strangers who may frequently approach them for apparent innocent services.

“Such strangers are apt to be enemy agents, who lure their unsuspecting victims into a course of conduct which may expose them to blackmailing attempts by the enemy and induce them to betray their country and the Allied cause.”

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Old 15th June 2017, 19:50
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucy Knight View Post
Dart S
I expect you are aware that the Eagle Oil tankers which Shell had share in, in early days, and took over early 60s changing their names yo nes of Shells are all listed on Shell Helderline site. The Eagle oil tankers were prefixed with San. If you access Shell Helderline site, click on tankers top left, then click on S they should be listed along with some names on crew lists. Kess Helder who owns site, and joined SH a few days ago, also has private collection of more photos and Fleet News.

Also if your late father was on any Western Approaches convoys they were controlled from early 40s from Derby House Liverpool. All the names of ships I believe are on wall. Original room where they plotted on huge map still there along with map.just google Derby House Western Approaches combined convoy control Liverpool. Plenty of photos. I believe the communication equipment was restored in recent years. Original 1930s building outside. Offices above ground but wartime convoy control bunkers with 8' concrete ceiling still there.

There are also convoy reports uploaded on internet. I have spotted the names of Shell tankers and Eagle oil ones on them
Thanks for the info Lucy. I have been on the Helderline site, and posted some information on behalf of my Dad when he was still with us. I also contributed images of the Shell tankers Cardium and Simnia. I tried to get Dad to see the Western Approaches Museum, but his health wouldn't let him travel any more. He was in Liverpool a number of times, unloading aviation spirit, (at Stanlow I think.) I shall certainly visit there myself, though.

Dad left the sea after the War, mainly through some health issues, and probably what is known today as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, although he would never have admitted it. He had a young family to see grow up, and so took up a position in his family's business, but after a few years went back to the London River and worked for the PLA. He finally took a Skipper's job on a pleasure cruiser in Torquay in 1970, and had the time of his life. If his health had been more robust after the War, he would have certainly stayed with Eagle Oil and passed the exam he had studied for to pass his Masters' Ticket. He finished the War sailing as Second Mate, and was on the first tanker into Cherbourg after it was liberated, the Empire Traveller. He joined San Veronico after that, but had to go into hospital in New York for an operation related to some internal damage done when he was sunk in the Empire Norseman.

Cheers.
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Old 16th June 2017, 00:03
Lucy Knight England Lucy Knight is offline
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If you have any anecdotes re you father sailing on Eagle oil/Shell tanker ships why don't you send them to Kess Helder who owns Helderline site for his private collection. He has more info than is on the general site. He has joined this site under name Helderline a couple of weeks ago.
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Old 16th June 2017, 18:57
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Thanks for the suggestion, Lucy. It would be good for Kees to add to his private archive. I shall look again for the notes Dad wrote about his life in wartime tankers.

Regards.
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Old 24th June 2017, 01:45
Lucy Knight England Lucy Knight is offline
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If you know the names of the Eagle Oil tankers your late father was on you should be able to find them on the convoy lists. Label below

http://www.warsailors.com/convoys/hxconvoys.html
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Old 24th June 2017, 09:22
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Thanks again Lucy. I have spotted some Shell tankers he also served on as an apprentice at the start of the War. Unfortunately, the dates recorded that he sailed in these ships are only the ones I have in his notes written from distant memories.I shall check dates with his discharge book and see what convoys he sailed in with Eagle Oil. I shall search for the westbound convoys too.

Regards.
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Old 4th August 2017, 04:52
Lucy Knight England Lucy Knight is offline
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Morse cod Wrens of Station X- The Outer Circle by Anne Glyn-Jones

Morse Code Wrens of Station X - The Outer Circle, book by Anne Glyn-Jones recently featured in local Plymouth Herald. It was written by a former wren who opted out of an Oxbridge University in 1942 to join Wrens. Anne Glyn Jones was interviewed by newspaper about the book she wrote. Up to 2009 she was not allowed to talk about the work they did intercepting enemy Morse transmissions which were then passed to station X, now known as Bletchley Park. It sounds like an interesting read.

Available from bookshops and Amazon.
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Old 4th August 2017, 04:58
Lucy Knight England Lucy Knight is offline
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Exclamation Morse cod Wrens of Station X- The Outer Circle by Anne Glyn-Jones

Morse Cmode Wrens of Station X book by Anne Glyn-Jones recently featured in local Plymouth Herald. It was written by a former wren who opted out of an Oxbridge University in 1942 to join Wrens. Anne Glyn Jones was interviewed by newspaper about the book she wrote. Up to 2009 she was not allowed to talk about the work they did intercepting enemy Morse transmissions which were then passed to station X, now known as Bletchley Park. It sounds like an interesting read.

Available from bookshops and Amazon.
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Old 4th August 2017, 10:20
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Have ordered that one Lucy. Always been interested in that aspect of World War Two.
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Old 4th August 2017, 23:50
Lucy Knight England Lucy Knight is offline
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Bob. You stated you were interested on that aspect of WW2. When you worked as an ER/O for CP Ships (like myself) you no doubt bought the book offered in 1981 by company written by George Musk - Canadian Pacific - Story of Great Shipping Line. In it was an interesting mention regarding Empress ship sinking off S Africa with great loss of life during WW2. Ship was carrying Italian prisoners of war. After Empress ship had been hit and sinking, U Boat surfaced and took Italian doctor POW only from lifeboat and disappeared. I sailed with Capt Bill Williams on supertanker ID Sinclair 1979 and he talked about surviving that sinking (the cadet jumping overboatd alongside him didnt surface) and being in sea when he was a cadet. In the book it mentions how the ship received course change and then another course change back to original. After the war it said Capt Williams was told by a German radio operator he met that the course change was bogus msg sent by enemy. I wonder if more of that story is in the public domain now.

Last edited by Lucy Knight; 5th August 2017 at 00:07.
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Old 5th August 2017, 00:07
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Actually no I haven't read that book, but I'll look into it. I sailed with Captain Williams a couple of times (you no doubt remember his nickname, which I wont repeat here.) I found him quite a strange man, but although I knew he was at sea during WW2 I didn't know any details. I wish I had known more, because we didn't get on to well.

Eventually we did battle, and I was convinced that would be the end of my time in CP. Yet strangely when CP wanted to relieve me early (I'd arranged to do an extended trip prior to joining in order to sit some City and Guilds exams onboard ship) he got on the phone and went to bat for me, and they allowed me to stay on an extra couple of months to complete the exams. I was a bit astounded because I figured this would have been his ideal opportunity to be rid of me.

Like I said, a strange man, but I wish I'd known more about his background.
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Old 5th August 2017, 00:42
Lucy Knight England Lucy Knight is offline
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Bob if you want a copy of that book Canadian Pacific-story of Great Shipping Line - you will have to go second hand.

The publisher of the book David and Charles, Newton Abbot, Devon closed down.

Here is where you could by one from. Abe books has some (including 1st edition ones) for sale listed including a UK bookshop

https//www.abebooks.com/book-search/isbn/0715379682
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Old 5th August 2017, 00:52
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Found and ordered. I've bought from Abebooks before, a little booklet on Leith Nautical College where I spent many a hangover contemplating the naval of the Marconi Crusader Transmitter.

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Old 5th August 2017, 16:07
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Can recommend for a summer reading, the following Books of the same author:
Matthew McCleery,

a) VIKING RAID
b) THE SHIPPING MAN

Can both be found on amazon.
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Old 5th August 2017, 18:45
Lucy Knight England Lucy Knight is offline
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Bob. This thread label below might put you in picture of what went on 1943 when Empress of Canada was hit by torpedoes. Many posts by relatives of those who ended up in shark infested waters. Not enought lifeboats to go around.

I was also told by Capt W that when he arrived back in England, his father a doctor stuck a needle in him and knocked him out for a few days so he got a good rest before he went back to sea. I believe he was just 16 years after he joined MN (Canadian Pacific) after attending Conway MN school. Bit different from today's " must have a PTSD label handed out virtually automatically counselling in anyone has suffered the least traumatic situation, which quite often makes matters 20 times worse.

htpp://nineteenkeys.blogspot.co.uk/2009/05/sinking-of-empress-of-canada.html?m=1

Last edited by Lucy Knight; 5th August 2017 at 18:51.
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Old 5th August 2017, 20:16
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Thanks Lucy. Some of those comments make for grim reading.

I feel kind of ashamed in a way that I blew up with Capt. W. Had I known he'd been through that at the age of 16 I might have reacted differently.

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Old 6th August 2017, 03:24
Lucy Knight England Lucy Knight is offline
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An interesting book called The Secret War by Brian Johnson can be purchased for £ 0.77 plus £2.75 postage and packing Abe books.

It came out 1977 at same time as BBC series.
It covers the struggle called Battle of the Beams. How the system of two beams the Germans used for night time bombing of UK was discovered.

An Interesting read

htps://www.abebooks.co.uk/book-search/title/the-secret-war/author/brian-johnson/sortby/3/
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Old 7th August 2017, 02:41
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I'm rereading Joseph Conrad's "Typhoon and Other Stories" from the Public Library and enjoying it even more now this time around. It's not just the setting at sea but his understanding of what it's like to be human.

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