Ships hit by U-boats

Black Point

American Steam merchant

Black Point under her former name Fairmont. US Naval Historical Center Photograph #NH70454

NameBlack Point
Type:Steam merchant
Tonnage5,353 tons
Completed1918 - New York Shipbuilding Corp, Camden NJ 
OwnerC.H. Sprague & Son, Boston MA 
Date of attack5 May 1945Nationality:      American
FateSunk by U-853 (Helmut Frömsdorf)
Position41° 19'N, 71° 23'W
Complement46 (12 dead and 34 survivors).
RouteNewport News, Virginia - Weymouth, Massachusetts 
Cargo7759 tons of coal 
History Laid down as collier Fairmont for Coastwise Transportation Co Inc, Boston MA. Acquired upon completion in February 1918 by the US Navy as cargo transport USS Fairmont (ID # 2429) for the Naval Overseas Transportation Service. Returned to owner in February 1919. 1921 renamed Nebraskan for American-Hawaiian SS Co, New York. 1927 renamed Black Point for C.H. Sprague & Son, Boston MA. 
Notes on event

At 17.40 hours on 5 May 1945 the unescorted Black Point (Master Charles E. Prior) was struck by a torpedo from U-853 in the stern, while proceeding in fog. The explosion carried away the aftermost forty feet of the ship aft of the #5 hold. The vessel quickly began to sink by the stern about five miles southeast of Point Judith, Rhode Island. The most of the eight officers, 33 crewmen and five armed guards (the ship was armed with one 6pdr and two .30cal guns) abandoned ship in two boats and a raft. The Black Point capsized and all but the bow disappeared beneath the water 25 minutes after the torpedo struck. Eleven crewmen and one armed guard died. 17 men on a raft were picked up by the Yugoslavian steam merchant Karmen and two men by the Norwegian steam merchant Scandanavia. All were later transferred to a US Coast Guard patrol boat, which brought them to Point Judith. Crash boats from Quonset Point, Rhode Island rescued 15 survivors and landed them at Newport.

The Black Point was the last American flagged ship sunk by a German U-boat. Immediately after the sinking the US Navy searched for U-853 and sank her in the morning of 6 May.

On boardWe have details of 15 people who were on board

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