Ships hit by U-boats

Henry Miller

American Steam merchant

NameHenry Miller
Type:Steam merchant (Liberty)
Tonnage7,207 tons
Completed1943 - California Shipbuilding Corp, Los Angeles CA 
OwnerMoore-McCormack SS Co, New York 
HomeportLos Angeles 
Date of attack3 Jan 1945Nationality:      American
FateA total loss by U-870 (Ernst Hechler)
Position35° 51'N, 6° 24'W - Grid CG 9576
Complement72 (0 dead and 72 survivors).
RouteLeghorn, Italy - Gibraltar (3 Jan) - Hampton Roads, Virginia 
Cargo1000 tons of iron ore as ballast 
History Completed December 1943 
Notes on event

At 18.03 hours on 3 Jan 1945 the Henry Miller (Master Charles William Spear) in station #51 of convoy GUS-63 was torpedoed by U-870 22 miles southwest of Cape Spartel. One torpedo struck at the bulkhead between #2 and #3 holds. The engines were secured as a fire started at the #3 hold, but the holds were soon filled by water and it extinguished the flames.
The ship, now down by the head and listing to port, lost way and drifted aft of convoy, but the complement of eight officers, 36 crewmen, 27 armed guards (the ship was armed with two 3in and eight 20mm guns) and one passenger (US Army security officer) remained on board. The master decided to restart the engines and make it to Gibraltar 50 miles away. 40 minutes after the attack the master ordered 25 crew members, 24 armed guards and the passenger to leave the ship in two lifeboats in case a bulkhead failed. They were picked up 15 minutes later by USS Brunswick (PF 68) and landed at Gibraltar the next day.
At 03.00 hours on 4 January, the skeleton crew brought the Henry Miller under her own power into Gibraltar, where she was declared a total loss. After the war the wreck was towed to Spain and scrapped.

On boardWe have details of 4 people who were on board

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