Ships hit by U-boats


American Steam merchant

Type:Steam merchant
Tonnage2,309 tons
Completed1920 - Detroit Shipbuilding Co, Wyandotte MI 
OwnerFord Motor Co, Detroit MI 
Date of attack23 Jul 1942Nationality:      American
FateSunk by U-129 (Hans-Ludwig Witt)
Position22° 40'N, 78° 44'W - Grid DM 6464
Complement34 (20 dead and 14 survivors).
RouteNuevitas, Cuba - Havana 
Cargomagnesium ore 
History Built for Independent SS Co, Cleveland OH 1924 sold to Ford Motor Co, Detroit MI. 
Notes on event

At 22.22 hours on 23 July 1942 the unescorted and unarmed Onondaga (Master George Dewey Hodges) was hit by one torpedo from U-129 about five miles north of Cayo Guillermo, while steaming on a nonevasive course at 8.5 knots. The torpedo struck on the port side amidships, causing the ship to sink within one minute. The eight officers, 25 crewmen and one passenger abandoned ship by jumping overboard and swam to two rafts that had flooded free. Six officers, 13 crewmen and the passenger were lost. The survivors were picked up by the Cuban fishing boat Laventina the next morning and landed at Punta San Juan, Cuba.

The passenger was the master of the Thomas McKean which had been sunk by U-505 (Loewe) on 29 June 1942.

On boardWe have details of 33 people who were on board

If you can help us with any additional information on this vessel then please contact us.

Return to Allied Ships hit by U-boats