Ships hit by U-boats


Greek Steam merchant

Photo Courtesy of Library of Contemporary History, Stuttgart

Type:Steam merchant
Tonnage4,153 tons
Completed1911 - R. & W. Hawthorn, Leslie & Co Ltd, Hebburn-on-Tyne 
OwnerPindos SS Co Ltd, Athens 
Date of attack30 Nov 1942Nationality:      Greek
FateSunk by U-181 (Wolfgang Lüth)
Position24° 29'S, 35° 44'E - Grid KP 3523
Complement34 (12 dead and 22 survivors).
RouteAden (13 Nov) – Lourenço Marques – Durban 
History Completed in April 1911 as British Framlington Court for Framlington Syndicate Ltd (Philip Edward Haldinstein & Co), London. 1921 sold to Greece and renamed Cleanthis for L. Boyazides Brothers & Co, Andros. 1938 sold to Pindos SS Co Ltd, Athens. 
Notes on event

At 05.31 hours on 30 Nov 1942, U-181 began shelling the unescorted Cleanthis in the Mozambique Channel about 42 miles south-southeast of Inhambane, after chasing the ship for four hours and missing her with two G7e torpedoes – the first missed at 05.11 hours because the ship suddenly changed course and the other passed underneath the ship without detonating one minute later. The U-boat approached from astern and continually fired 80 rounds from the deck gun, scoring about 70 hits and knocking out the anti-aircraft gun carried on the stern, the only armament of Cleanthis. The master was killed by one of the first shells that hit the bridge and no distress signals could be sent as the wireless was shot away at once. The survivors hastily abandoned ship in the last intact lifeboat. The gun crew of U-181 then carefully aimed and fired the last available round for the deck gun from a distance of only 400 meters into the waterline of the starboard side of the stern and then proceeded to fire small holes into the port side with the 20mm AA gun, until the burning ship sank by the stern at 06.55 hours. The master and eleven crew members were lost. On 2 December, the survivors were picked up by the Portuguese steam passenger ship Lourenço Marques after being spotted by a British aircraft and were landed at Lourenço Marques.

On boardWe have details of 1 people who were on board

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