Ships hit by U-boats

Ekatontarchos Dracoulis

Greek Steam merchant

Ekatontarchos Dracoulis under her former name Coniscliffe. Photo Courtesy of Library of Contemporary History, Stuttg

NameEkatontarchos Dracoulis
Type:Steam merchant
Tonnage5,329 tons
Completed1918 - Richardson, Duck & Co Ltd, Stockton-on-Tees 
OwnerHeirs of George A. Dracoulis, Athens 
Date of attack20 Jan 1940Nationality:      Greek
FateSunk by U-44 (Ludwig Mathes)
Position40° 20'N, 10° 07'W - Grid CG 1963
Complement? men (6 dead and ? survivors).
RouteRosario - Tyne 
Cargo7511 tons of wheat and general cargo 
History Laid down as British steam tanker War Flier, completed November 1918 as War Anglian for Anglo-Mexican Petroleum Co, London. 1920 sold to France, renamed Olympe for Soc. Les Affreteurs RĂ©unis, Rouen and converted to steam merchant. 1923 sold to Britain and renamed Dayton for Dayton SS Co, Newcastle. 1927 renamed Coniscliffe for Care & Marquand Shipping Co Ltd, Newcastle. 1932 sold to Greece and renamed Ekatontarchos Dracoulis for Heirs of George A. Dracoulis, Athens. 
Notes on event

At 04.15 hours on 20 Jan 1940 the unescorted Ekatontarchos Dracoulis was hit by a stern torpedo from U-44 west of Portugal. The U-boat had chased the ship since 20.05 hours the day before and at 00.21 hours fired a G7e torpedo that detonated prematurely. The commander observed how the crew abandoned ship and decided not to fire another torpedo due to the lifeboats still being so close to the vessel. The U-boat then left the area because the ship was apparently in a sinking condition.


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