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The Battle of the Atlantic

The Diaries of Joseph Hart

S.S. Manchester Progress (1)
© National Maritime Museum London - g3943
 

THE BATTLE OF THE ATLANTIC

THE DIARY OF JOSEPH HART (1902- 1969).

R15202 MERCHANT SEAMAN-STEWARD

S.S. "MANCHESTER PROGRESS"

9th Sep 1939 - 14th Dec 1939

 

Diary 2

S.S. "Manchester Citizen"

Atlantic Convoys etc.

17th Oct 1941 - 27th Dec 1942

Documents

By kind permission of Mrs Kathleen Caldwell née Hart ©

Sat Sept 9th 1939

Capt goes ashore for orders from Navy. Left canal and anchored in river

5.30 sailed convoy of 8 ships 1bomber 1seaplane 2 destroyers “Beaverbrae” “Princessa” “Manares” (Commodore) “Jonathan Holt” “Corner Brook” Blue Funnel “Jamaica Planter”

2nd voyage

Friday November 3rd 1939

Left Manchester 2 pm nearly full cargo . 4in gun gunner Tied up at Latchford went ashore

 

Sat.

Left at 6 arrived Ellesmere at noon Went ashore at night.

 

Sunday

left at 3pm and anchored in river

 

Monday

left Liverpool 4pm convoy of 7? Ships 2 destroyers 1corvette Speed 10 knots Newfoundland

 

Tuesday

Should meet convoy out of Bristol Channel (but did not)? At 9 knots

 

Wed.

Strong S gale with very heavy weather Of Lands End

 

Thursday

weather sunshin Subs in vicinity zigzagged a course destroyers searched

 

Friday

convoy broke up full speed 14 ½ knots

 

Sat.

Heavy head swell pitching bad 13 ½ knots

 

Sunday

Gale Blowing 245 miles Nov 12th

 

Monday

Gale Heavy seas running 172miles

 

Tuesday

weather finer swell going down 329miles

 

Thursday

Fine but cold had gun practice fired 2 shells

 

Friday

17th Nov 300miles Fine but cold snowing

 

Sat.

Cold Arrived Quebec 6.30pm bLeft Montreal 6am Sunday for Halifax Cold but clear Went through Gut of Cansso Tuesday 7am arrived Halifax Wednesday 1am Went to Inner Harbour Thursday 2pm Large Fleet in Halifax 2British 2French battleships 4subs

 

Saturday 2nd Dec.

Left Halifaxat 10am In convoy of 14 ships 2subs & 2destroyers 11knot convoy HMS” Ascania” foggy Saturday night regret collision in fog “Chancellor” and “Atholl Chief” former sank loss of 24lives it was 8pm and foggy

 

Sunday

wind getting up still foggy 221miles

 

Monday 4th

still foggy getting ready for bad weather We have 2 French ships in the convoy one a liner the “De Grasse”

 

Tuesday

still foggy lost all other ships Sea going down

 

Wed

Sea Calm lost convoy saw sub blew Whistle for gun stations False alarm as it was our sub gave us all a scare Convoy still lost and sub has gone now don’t like being on our own.

 

Thursday

Sea Calm Found convoy at 8am but sub still missing Everybody glad to see convoy

 

Friday

Nice weather sub came up at 5pm

 

Sat.

quiet day still all together.

 

Sunday

10th Dec Fine day zigzagging but making 10 knots

 

Monday

weather rough

 

Tuesday

dull and rain lost “Torr Head” no escort yet

 

Wednesday

Picked escort last night at 7pm and today a bomber. The Channel convoy left at 1oclock with the sub.

 

Thursday.........

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