Ships hit by U-boats

Baron Kinnaird

British Steam merchant

Photo courtesy of Stuart Smith

NameBaron Kinnaird
Type:Steam merchant
Tonnage3,355 tons
Completed1927 - Napier & Miller Ltd, Old Kilpatrick, Glasgow 
OwnerH. Hogarth & Sons Ltd, Glasgow 
Date of attack10 Mar 1943Nationality:      British
FateSunk by U-621 (Max Kruschka)
Position53° 00'N, 40° 00'W - Grid AK 7174
Complement42 (42 dead - no survivors)
ConvoyON-169 (straggler)
RouteMiddlesbrough - Loch Ewe - Macoris 
History Completed in July 1927. On 25 June 1940 the Baron Kinnaird was one of three tramp steamers who were the last ships to leave St. Jean de Luz on the day the Armistice came into force, carrying 2,000 evacuees to safety. 
Notes on event

At 22.59 hours on 10 March 1943 the unescorted Baron Kinnaird (Master Leslie Anderson), a straggler from convoy ON-169 since 6 March, was hit by a torpedo from U-621 while steaming in rough seas about 430 miles south-southeast of Cape Farewell. Nine minutes earlier the U-boat had missed the ship with a spread of three torpedoes after chasing it for two and a half hours. The attack was observed by the nearby U-600 (Zurmühlen) which soon left the area, assuming that the other U-boat will finish off the stopped freighter. However, U-621 had to dive to reload its torpedo tubes because the stern torpedo missed at 23.17 hours and was then unable to find the ship again. Apparently Baron Kinnaird managed to proceed after being hit, but was located by U-621 again at 16.43 hours on 11 March. She was struck on port side aft by a second torpedo at 19.17 hours, after two other torpedoes had missed at 18.31 and 19.12 hours. Big holes were seen in both sides of the vessel and the Germans then twice tried to set the ship on fire with 20mm gunfire, eventually giving up after one torpedo fired at 19.42 hours passed underneath the target and another fired at 21.53 hours missed behind the stern. The U-boat waited nearby until the ship finally sank at 10.54 hours on 12 March - the actions of Kruschka during this encounter were later judged by the BdU as "exemplary for future or similar cases how it should not be done!". No survivors were ever found: the master, 35 crew members and six gunners were lost.

On boardWe have details of 41 people who were on board

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