ss "JURA"

25th January 2006, 08:12
Heres one for the "Experts"
Just before Christmas 1955 I was sent from the Pool to join a ship Called "JURA" at Preston, she had not long arrived from the Gulf of Bothnia (Finland) and was disharging her cargo of pit props and still had a list which was common in such ships , she was a "JEEP" type ship and I have often wondered how the they got that name- does anyone know? and has anyone a pic of that ship ? please, I didnt sign on as she was going to be at Vaasa about New Year --I didnt fancy that!
Cheers Peter (Thumb)

Bruce Carson
25th January 2006, 13:23
Hi Peter:
Jeeps, or Geeps, were an American wartime standard ship and I'm taking a guess that the name was taken from GP---General Purpose, as was the name for the tough little all purpose wartime road machine.
General Motors also used the name for years for their diesel locomotives.

Bruce C.

25th January 2006, 13:32
Webster's dictionary gives a derivation of Jeep from General Purpose as Bruce says, but only mentions the term in connection with the motor vehicle.

The US navy had ships called "Jeep Carriers" which seem to have been referred to as Jeeps - see this URL for more information:

What the link is to Jura I couldn't say - maybe it was one of these put to a different use after the war?

The jury is still out at the moment.


25th January 2006, 15:01
Jura 1813 tons built 1943 by Pacific bridge Co San Francisco (ex Samuel V Shreeve 49)
250 x 42.1 x 18.3 triple expansion engine by shipbuilders. code flags MARU.
Owned by Admiral Shipping (Glen & Co) Registered in Glasgow. British flag.

Bruce Carson
25th January 2006, 18:15
The 'Samuel V. Shreve' and the other ships of her type were classified as N3-S-A1, a coastal cargo vessel and were the smallest US wartime standard class built. Their size enabled them to be built on the Great Lakes as well as on the coast. They were commonly called "Jeeps" and have been so called on other threads on this forum.
Their dimensions were as above and I think they could make a breathtaking 10 knots service speed.

Bruce C.

25th January 2006, 21:18
Thanks Gentlemen for your responces, Very interesting, I do recall she was only a small ship, the name would have been taken from one the Islands off NW Scotland Cheers Peter

28th January 2006, 09:29

Original Name:Samuel V. Shreve
MC #:455
Disposition:To Britain, sold private 1949, sank 1963

Bruce Carson
28th January 2006, 13:40
Jura 1813 tons built 1943 by Pacific bridge Co San Francisco (ex Samuel V Shreeve 49)
250 x 42.1 x 18.3 triple expansion engine by shipbuilders. code flags MARU.
Owned by Admiral Shipping (Glen & Co) Registered in Glasgow. British flag.

As a wartime standard ship built specifically to combat the Axis, does anyone see something ironical in the code flags?

Bruce C.

29th January 2006, 08:37
Yes Bruce, I noticed the code, perhaps in the heat of the moment back in 1943 its implication may have escaped attention, I am interested in RUUD's bit about her having "Sank" in 1963-I would like to know the circumstances, I went aboard in Preston and I wasnt impressed with the big list (although She Had only just Arrived) I asked the Mate to sign my form "Not Required" and he did.

Cheers Peter (Thumb)
PS can ONE print out individual replies in these threads or do you end up printing out the whole lot ?

29th January 2006, 14:26
Hi Peggie, SS JURA Yankee Jeep they belonged to Glens of Glasgow, you didnt miss much by not joining her. I joined her sister ship SS Winga in Preston in 1950, was away for Christmas and New Year. Iced up in Vassa for about three weeks, about six inches of ice on the bulkhead in the gloryhole. Took us about two weeks comeing back across the North Sea, lost a lot of deck cargo, run out of grub, run out of coal. Had to go to Stornaway to bunker up. I think there was an SS Meta, SS Vassa, SS Shuna.Think one of them turned turtle.

30th January 2006, 09:38
Hello Cavey, you have hit the nail right on the head and I am not surprised, I got the feeling when the Bosun was showing me around the ship that this didnt feel right, I a "Scouser" at sea New Year with a crew of Glaswegians in the Gulf of Bothnia "KNOW WOT I MEAN LIKE"!!!!! so instead I was in the Sargasso Sea thinking about them, all you tell me and from what I remember that may have been one time in my life I was right. Cheers Mate Peter

1st March 2006, 21:33

Did a couple of trips on the Zena, before taking her to Great Yarmouth for breaking up. There was a Runa as well, I know.

18th September 2007, 21:24
seems to me that many were built in canada as well, usaually named after parks as well, same as the north sands types, these were named for parks & forts, was told Vickers in montreal made some & retro fitted some with diesels, from fairbanks, doxfords & nordbergs... They werer about 4,700 t

19th September 2007, 20:31
About 47 I sailed on Salvesen's Struan, ex Empire Patriot, 2893 gt. 315x47x23 Built Hartlepool 1942. Currie's Iceland was similar. This class of ship were known as West Hartlepool Jeeps. The woodbine funnel did nothing to improve their looks.

Geoff of Hull
23rd September 2007, 19:38
I remember the "Zena" in Gt Yarmouth on the Gorleston side in 63-64 and I am not sure if the "Shuna"was there too,but if my memory serves me correct they were in Everards coloured funnel..I remember the larger than normal midship accommodation and I think quite a large funnel..That's if my memory is holding out over the years..Geoff

24th September 2007, 08:05
I remember seeing the Indian flagged ship 'Radiant' in Abadan in 1967, the vessel looked familiar, so I walked over and had a closer look and discovered that she was the old 'Winga', still looking quite trim.

Jimmy martin
24th March 2010, 14:46
Hello Jimmy Martin from Glasgow.
The ss Jura was my first ship after leaving the Vindicartrix .Signed on in Glasgow for the Baltic as Deck Boy in 1949 ...My last tripto sea about 1959 sailed on the SS Cara as 2nd mate ..Would appreciate any info on how to obtain any photoes of the above

24th March 2010, 16:48
There is another dimension to the name "Jeep". In 1936 a character was introduced in the Popeye comic strip, called the Jeep. He took North America by srtorm and was probably as well recognized as Mickey Mouse within a very short time. He was an entirely lovable character, and so the name Jeep was used affectionately.
There is more info on the is site:
The name Jeep was associated with certain ships and with the small 4x4 universal military vehicle built by Willys Overland during World War II and was used first as a term of endearment, and only later adopted by the manufacturer.

24th March 2010, 19:31


26th April 2010, 12:49
Glens of Gasgow had I think 3 Jeeps the Jura, Fidra, and the Orsa. the older ships were
the Cara, Meta, and Thelma. They also had the Runa, Shuna, and the Narva lost in the North Sea. The Head Line in Belfast had 3 Jeeps the Dunmore Head, Kinsale Head and the
Malin Head. Metcalfe I think had 2 Jeeps the Andrew M , and the Charles M.

Alex c.