August’s unknown ship was obviously too difficult for most of you and brought only one correct reply who identified her as the Eastlea.
The winner of the August competition was A. D. Frost of Sunderland
AD Frost writes:
August’s Unknown Ship is J. Morrison’s, Cliffside Shipping, ss Eastlea, built 1924 by J. Priestman, Sunderland. On 3rd. March 1941 posted missing on a voyage from Famagusta to Cape Verde Islands./Newport News, with a cargo of cotton seed and general, having sailed from Cape Verde. It was claimed to have been torpedoed and sunk by U-48 (60N 18W).
On 24th March 1941, the Eastlea (Master Malcolm Goudie Macpherson) was reported missing in the North Atlantic. The master, 33 crew members and three gunners were lost. At 22.58 hours on 24th March, U-106 had observed one hit amidships on a steamer running north from a distance of 600 yards. The ship broke her back and sank within ten minutes about 130 miles WNW of San Antonia, Cape Verde Islands. For some time the vessel concerned was thought to have been the Brazilian steam merchant Santa Clara (2,512grt), but this ship radioed an SOS message on 14th March from 30°48N 68°42W following an explosion. The ship actually hit and sunk was almost certainly the Eastlea.