SS City of Cairo in World War I

Hugh MacLean
15th December 2005, 22:40
Congratulations on the new Forum. Let me be the first to challenge you all.

I have been researching the SS City of Cairo for years (WW2) and have a website dedicated to her. I know very little about her activities in WWI.

Someone asked me recently about his relation sailing from BC, Canada to England late Oct 1918 only to die in a military hospital in Devonport two days after arriving in the UK. He wanted to know if the ship would have sailed from BC to the UK with the the Canadian Expeditionary Force as a troopship. I was able to tell him that the ship did take the ANZACS home in 1919 from the Great War but I knew little about its prior routes.

So question: ships voyage cards for WW2 are available in various places like the TNA in Kew but can we also get voyage record cards for ships during WWI and if so where? I would really like to help this guy out. Thanks in advance.


26th December 2005, 20:13
I checked out your website before replying and you have clearly done a great deal of digging already and have done your father proud. I suspect that you will already be familiar with most of the information below but it is just possible that something may have slipped through the net which may be useful to you.

I am sure you have already come across the National Maritime Museum guides about research - there are a whole series related to the Royal Navy, so if City of Cairo was "signed up" during WW1 you could try looking there - but I am sure you have already covered this by your research at the public records office. The URL is

If you are looking for information for a period of Merchant Navy service, I have put an analysis of the NMM research guides related to the Merchant Navy in the following Shipsnostalgia posting: P&O Forum, thread "Is there a P&O Archive that an be accessed for research purposes?" date 27/11/05.

BTW I did a Google search today and found the following hits which you may not have spotted:,16381,1652117,00.html An obituary to Jane Davies who died in Nov 2005 aged 95 - she was a passenger of City of Cairo when she was sunk. Citation for BEM for Margaret Hope Maberley Gordon another survivor. This includes a reference to one of the people you have in your "In memoriam" section that says he died from dehydration. This advertises tapes of interviews of the U-boat captian etc from German newsreels. This URL seems to summarise some research that was done and has a reference to City of Cairo that appears to relate to WW1 - not sure how you would follow it up but may be worth a look.

I hope at least one of the above will be of use to you and hope you manage to find out more.

Hugh MacLean
26th December 2005, 20:56
Hello Brian,

Thanks for looking throught the site and your kind comments.
I had most of the info there apart from the P & O Archive. I will check that out. I had some help from the Mercantile Marine Forum as well.

If I can help you in anyway please advise.

Thanks again.