Help needed to solve a WWI mystery - Ships Nostalgia
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Help needed to solve a WWI mystery

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  #1  
Old 22nd May 2009, 03:34
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The Flying Mouse The Flying Mouse is offline  
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Help needed to solve a WWI mystery

Hi folks.

I was wondering if anyone could help me solve the following story of a ship lost at sea.

My Great Grandfather, Able Seaman Arthur Joseph Sutcliffe was lost at sea on 6th May 1918.
The ship he was on, S.S. Eveleen, sailed from Ayr that day, bound for Belfast, and was never seen or heard of again.
There were no survivors.

Through a little research (not to mention a LOT of help from the guys at uboat.net) i've discovered the following facts that might explain the disapearance of this ship.


On 6th May 1918, SS Eveleen departed Ayr on her way to Belfast.

That same day, UB72 attacked and sank S.S. Sandhurst 6 miles NW off Corsewall Point.

The next day, UB72 rendevoued with another U boat (U 86) 15 miles SW of the Isle Of Man (this would seem to suggest that UB72 was already following a S/SE course when she came across S.S. Sandhurst).

As S.S. Eveleen was heading straight towards the point where UB72 is already known to have made an acredited kill that same day, there is more than a strong possibility that S.S Eveleen was also sunk by that particular U Boat.

There is just a couple of more pieces of information to make that case much more stronger, and i'm hoping that some of you may be able, and kind enough, to help me with.


Is there somewhere that will still have records of what time S.S. Eveleen departed from Ayr on it's final journey?

Does anyone have any information they are able to share about S.S Sandhurst?
CRITICALLY, what time she was attacked and sunk.
I believe if S.S. Eveleen can be placed near enough to the scene of UB72's known attack at the right time, it should prove beyond reasonable doubt the fate of my Great Grandfathers ship (according to sources, the weather was fine that day, and there is no other explaination for the ships disappearance).

On a side note, UB72 was sunk on 12th May 1918, just six days after the Eveleen vanished.
This could indicate why the U Boat never took credit for that ship.

It would be wonderful to finally discover the truth of what happened to S.S. Eveleen after 91 years lost at sea.

Finally, I am interested in finding a picture of S.S Eveleen.
Any help in that would be gratefully received.
A few notes on Eveleen.....

"EVELEEN was a 489 grt cargo steamer built in 1891 by Workman, Clark & Co., Ltd., Belfast for J. Milligen, Belfast (from 1897 on owner listed as J. Milligen & Co., Ltd., Belfast). She's a missing vessel; EVELEEN sailed from Ayr, on May 6, 1918, for Belfast with a cargo of coal but never arrived."

I found my way to this forum by searching for Clark & Co Ltd who built her, and found a thread discussing the book Forgotten Shipbuilders Of Belfast which I gather has a lot of information and pics concerning Clark & Co.
If anyone has this book, is there any chance you could check for pics of Eveleen?
If the book contains pics of the ship i'll be sure to add the book to my shopping list.

With thanks in advance.
Neil

Last edited by The Flying Mouse : 22nd May 2009 at 03:46.
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  #2  
Old 22nd May 2009, 07:52
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Hiya T F M
May I suggest, if you haven't done so allready that is, that you check through Harland & Wolf, or their forerunners history. It might just be that Workman, Clark & Co were bought out by H&W, maybe to remove the smaller opposition.
Nice to hear that someone is intrested in a little workhorse and not just the Titannic!
Good luck to you in your search matey.

Last edited by Steve Woodward : 22nd May 2009 at 08:20. Reason: removed the f word
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  #3  
Old 22nd May 2009, 09:06
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help needed to solve a WW1 mystery

Several references to SS Eveleen on Google and crew members/ war graves etc.
You may already have seen these.
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  #4  
Old 22nd May 2009, 13:39
Billy1963 Billy1963 is offline  
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There is a photo of the Eveleen here, though I can't say if this is the one built in 1920. Similar tonnage, same Co.

http://www.photoship.co.uk/JAlbum%20...veleen-01.html

Commemorated Tower Hill Memorial WWI section

ADAMSON, Fireman, ANDREW ELLIOTT, S.S. "Eveleen" (Belfast). Mercantile Marine. Presumed drowned 6th May 1918. Age 23. Son of Robert and Jane Adamson; husband of Jane McDonnell Adamson (nee Hammond), of 7, Fairymount, Carrickfergus, Co. Antrim. Born at Eden, Co. Antrim.

BLAIR, Fireman, ROBERT, S.S. "Eveleen" (Belfast). Mercantile Marine. Presumed drowned 6th May 1918. Age 26. Son of Robert Blair, of Albert Rd., Carrickfergus, Co. Antrim, and the late Jane Blair. Born at Ballyclare.

COLLINS, Seaman, JOHN, S.S. "Eveleen" (Belfast). Mercantile Marine. Presumed drowned 6th May 1918. Age 29. Son of Jane Collins (nee McGann), of 61, Corporation St., Belfast, and the late Michael Collins. Born at Belfast.

COLLINS, First Mate, MICHAEL, S.S. "Eveleen" (Belfast). Mercantile Marine. Presumed drowned 6th May 1918. Age 60. Son of the late Owen and Eliza Collins; husband of Jane Collins, (nee McGann), of 61, Corporation St., Belfast. Born at Portaferry, Co. Down.

DOYLE, Second Mate, JAMES, S.S. "Eveleen" (Belfast). Mercantile Marine. Presumed drowned 6th May 1918. Age 35. Son of Margaret Doyle (nee Connell), of 19, Broughton St., Dundalk, Co. Louth, and the late William Doyle. Born at Dundalk.

DOYLE, Master, WILLIAM, "Eveleen". Mercantile Marine. 6th May 1918.

HARRIS, Trimmer, ROBERT, S.S. "Eveleen" (Belfast). Mercantile Marine. Presumed drowned 6th May 1918. Age 32. Son of Robert Harris; husband of Mary Harris (nee Blair), of Taylor's Row, Carrickfergus, Co. Antrim. Born at Ballyhena.

KELSEY, Cook, HENRY, S.S. "Eveleen" (Belfast). Mercantile Marine. Presumed drowned 6th May 1918. Age 32. Son of John and Mary Kelsey (nee Larbin), of Duncairn Gardens, Belfast. Born at Dublin.

MASON, Seaman, HENRY, S.S. "Eveleen" (Belfast). Mercantile Marine. Presumed drowned 6th May 1918. Age 62. Son of the late Roland and Margaret Mason; husband of Mary Mason (nee McKeating), of 55, Stanhope St., Belfast. Born at Portaferry.

MEGRAW, Seaman, HENRY, S.S. "Eveleen" (Belfast). Mercantile Marine. Presumed drowned 6th May 1918. Age 59. Son of the late Richard and Mary Megraw; husband of Mary Megraw (nee Flynn), of 2, Young Row, Belfast. Born at Ardglass, Co. Down.

PHILIPS, First Engineer, WILLIAM, "Eveleen" (Belfast). Mercantile Marine. Presumed drowned 6th May 1918. Age 53. Son of George Philips and the late Helen Murdoch Philips; husband of Catherine Philips (nee Cochrane), of 82, Castlenagh Rd., Belfast. Born at Glasgow.

TOOMATH, Second Engineer, JAMES, S.S. "Eveleen" (Belfast). Mercantile Marine. Presumed drowned 6th May 1918. Age 29. Son of Richard Toomath and the late Anna Toomath; husband of Elizabeth Toomath (nee Steele), of 17, Kensington Avenue, Bloomfield, Belfast. Born at Belfast.
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  #5  
Old 23rd May 2009, 17:00
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The Flying Mouse The Flying Mouse is offline  
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Hi folks.
Thanks for your input on this.
Billy, thanks a million for the link to the two pics.
Hopefully i'll be able to verify that they are of the Eveleen that was sunk 6/5/18

I would still like to find out the time of Eveleen's departure on the day she vanished.
Would that info still be in the possession of the harbour master at Ayr, or would it be a matter of record anywhere else?

Neil
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  #6  
Old 6th October 2009, 02:42
Tephi Tephi is offline  
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Hi Neil, my great grandfather William who was the master of the ship and his son James also died on Eveleen. Have one picture of it.
Will let you know any info when I find some more.
Regards Theresa Doyle
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  #7  
Old 6th October 2009, 11:07
ted nutt ted nutt is offline  
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Hi Neil,built as yard#76.Ted.
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  #8  
Old 6th October 2009, 16:27
Three-oh Three-oh is offline  
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SS Kathleen J Milligen & Co, Belfast, built 1902.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ted nutt View Post
Hi Neil,built as yard#76.Ted.
G'day Ted,
As you seem to have access to Workman, Clark Archives, can you confirm if the 'Kathleen' of 1902 built for J Milligen & Co. also came from their yard. She was in the Grand Union Shipping Company's fleet as the 'Blisworth' from 1940 to 1950 before being sold on to Kettlewell's (Holderness Shipping) and renamed as the 'Holdernidd'. The only photo I have ever seen of her depicts her in her latter days as 'Holdernidd', but still with ratlines on the shrouds and what appear to be furled tri-sails !
I have seen her described variously as being built in Aberdeen by Hall's, in Ayr by Ailsa Shipbuilding Co. and in Belfast. The Workman, Clark records of launches which I have been able to find do not extend before 1904. A yard number would be fairly conclusive.
Many thanks, Three-oh.
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  #9  
Old 6th October 2009, 19:34
ian d.cameron ian d.cameron is offline  
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Hi Three oh
Both Miramar and Clydesite have her as being build in Ayr.
McKnight. Ayr Shipyard, Yard No 65
http://www.miramarshipindex.org.nz/ship/show/196502
http://www.clydesite.co.uk/clydebuil...p.asp?id=20307
Wonder if this is a photo of her.
http://www.photoship.co.uk/JAlbum%20...thleen-02.html
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  #10  
Old 6th October 2009, 20:55
ted nutt ted nutt is offline  
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As the above Ailsa #65.I do have all the yard nos from 1880 when the yard opened.Ted
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  #11  
Old 7th October 2009, 11:45
Three-oh Three-oh is offline  
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Thank you guys for all your help. The McKnight, Ayr information is very conclusive. The image referred to is not J. Milligen's 'Kathleen'. She was a raised quarterdecker with a spindly 'Woodbine' smokestack, two hatches and three masts. Her bunker hatch is not very obvious in the photograph I have of her. She is probably as close as one can get to Rudgard Kipling's 'Dirty British coaster with a salt-caked smokestack'. I realise that I have caused a drift away from the original enquiry about Milligen's 'Eveleen', and appreciate your assistance. I will post the picture of the 'Kathleen' to the gallery in her latter days as the 'Holdernidd'. I think that the luxury of her enclosed wheelhouse must be a later modification.
Three-oh.
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  #12  
Old 7th October 2009, 12:44
BillH BillH is offline  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Three-oh View Post
G'day Ted,
As you seem to have access to Workman, Clark Archives, can you confirm if the 'Kathleen' of 1902 built for J Milligen & Co. also came from their yard. She was in the Grand Union Shipping Company's fleet as the 'Blisworth' from 1940 to 1950 before being sold on to Kettlewell's (Holderness Shipping) and renamed as the 'Holdernidd'. The only photo I have ever seen of her depicts her in her latter days as 'Holdernidd', but still with ratlines on the shrouds and what appear to be furled tri-sails !
I have seen her described variously as being built in Aberdeen by Hall's, in Ayr by Ailsa Shipbuilding Co. and in Belfast. The Workman, Clark records of launches which I have been able to find do not extend before 1904. A yard number would be fairly conclusive.
Many thanks, Three-oh.
HOLDERNIDD (1) (1950 - 1956)
O.N. 113519. 738g. 316n. 200.0 x 30.4 x 12.0 feet.
T.3-cyl. (17" 27" & 44" x 33") engine manufactured by Ross & Duncan, Glasgow. 123 NHP.
Later: (17-3/8”, 27" & 44” x 33”) 135 NHP.
12.3.1902: Launched as KATHLEEN by S. McKnight & Company Ltd., Ayr (Yard No. 65) for J. Milligen & Company Ltd., Belfast.
4.1902: Completed by Ailsa Shipbuilding Company Ltd., Ayr,
1939: Sold to Grand Union (Shipping) Ltd., London, retaining Belfast registry.
1940: Renamed BLISWORTH and transferred to London registry.
1950: Sold to the Holderness Steamship Company Ltd., (T. Kettlewell & Sons Ltd., managers), Hull, and renamed HOLDERNIDD.
13.1.1956: Delivered to C. W. Dorkin & Company, for demolition at Redhaugh.
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