'Foreign' or 'OHMS'

chief's daughter
28th May 2014, 21:45
I've been looking at my dad's old discharge book, and during the war years, some voyages were classd as foreign, and a couple others as OHMS. What do these mean?

Stephen J. Card
28th May 2014, 22:05
In Bermuda, HM Government is still used and is marked OHMS.

Large letter on the top of the envelope. O.H.M.S

"On Her Majesty Service".

Hang on to the old colonial days!


Stephen

chief's daughter
28th May 2014, 22:09
I understand what OHMS literally means, but can't quite see why some voyages are classed as foreign and some as a OHMS. Does it mean that 'foreign' ones were merchant and 'OHMS' ones were seconded to the Royal Navy? This is a total mystery to me, being wayyyyyyyy too young to understand anything about WWII.

trotterdotpom
28th May 2014, 23:14
Maybe OHMS meant service on troopships. "Foreign" would mean service on normal cargo ships on foreign going articles.

John T

ben27
28th May 2014, 23:37
good day chiefs daughter,today.06:45.re:'foreign'or o.h.m.s i think you will find your answer on trotterpom,today.08:14.#4.regards ben27

Stephen J. Card
29th May 2014, 00:41
Tried Google OHMS.... always come out with On Her/His Majesty Service and was used for franking postal.

Can't why it could be used in a discharge book... Foreign sure... but OHMS.... that would not have been even used in RN... even if some one else was in the Merchannt Mercantile.

Likewise... trooping ship were called H.M.T. - His Majesty Transport. That would make sense... HMT DILWARA (Foreign)... can't think the stamp OHMS. Was it written in hand or by a ink stamp? Also... under which column in the discharge book. What ships were in the book with OHMS? Might help.

Will get it eventually!

Stephen

chief's daughter
29th May 2014, 06:58
It was stamped in the usual place. It was the monarch of Bermuda, apparently some top secret mission for transporting bullion to canada or something.

trotterdotpom
29th May 2014, 10:02
Google Monarch of Bermuda. She carried troops in WW2 and also participated in the British raid on Narvik. Interesting site about the ship.

John T

chadburn
29th May 2014, 10:19
During Wartime all Allied Merchant Ships come under the various Countries 'Naval Control of Shipping' section those carrying cargo on behalf of the Government have the 'Tag' mentioned attached to them on the Tote Board in the Departure Port and Arrival Port in case special measures are needed.

stan mayes
29th May 2014, 10:33
During the war I made a voyage in Largs Bay 10th June to 5th November 1943..
She was then a troopship...In the column 'Description of voyage' is OHMS
Stan

spongebob
29th May 2014, 10:36
During WW2 many Merchant ships operated under charter to the British Ministries of war or supply or other government agencies, The Union Co ship MV Hauraki captured by the Japanese was one of them hence they were on His Majesty's service under those charters. Worth a guess?

Bob

chief's daughter
29th May 2014, 10:44
Thank you :). I love chatting to you old sea dogs, having missed out on having my dad around for all my childhood you guys really being him to life for me. I will think of him with pride for all that he achieved when we lay him to rest this afternoon.

Thank you again :)

Tony Morris
29th May 2014, 10:55
Years ago a brown envelope dropping on the hall carpet with OHMS on it was a good indication that the tax man was after you,

Tony

Hugh MacLean
29th May 2014, 17:53
OHMS means that the vessel was working on Admiralty service for that particular voyage. The F simply means the next voyage was 'Foreign Going'.

Regards
Hugh

Stephen J. Card
29th May 2014, 18:31
OK Chief's Daughter.... here it goes. I hope the dates are right. Would be great if I can get it for you...

In July 1940, MONARCH OF BERMUDA was one of three ships - along with the two Polish liners BATORY and SOBIESKI - assigned to "Operation Fish", transport of the bulk of bullion and other precious items of the British government, valued of 192 million pounds, to safety in Halifax. MONARCH OF BERMUDA alone carried 40 million pounds worth of gold. The valuable cargo was transport by train from London to Glasgow, and then by tender to the liners lying at anchor off Greenock. Daparting the Clyde on 5 July, the three liners were provided with a special escort, including battleship HMS REVENGE and cruiser HMS BONAVENTURE and destroyers.

Within a couple of days of leaving the Clyde, the convoy ran in heavy weather. MONARCH OF BERMUDA and the other liners were under instructions not to slow down under any circumstances, so the continued at top speed through the storm. The escorts, unable to keep up, gradually fell behind, leaving the liners and their valuable cargo unprotected. The fourth day out , violent avoiding action had to be taken when two torpedoes were sighted approaching MONARCH OF BERMUDA, but she managed to avoid them. The three liners arrived safely in Halifax on 12 July. A couple of days ago later, the battered escorts also reached Halifax.

Resuming her duties as a troopship, MONARCH OF BERMUDA was sent to Halifax, carrying 875 women and passengers on the westbound voyage, returning with 1,328 troops. MONARCH OF BERMUDA remained permanently on the Atlantic trooping run for some time, and also some trips into the South Altantic.

ETC.....


From: QUEEN OF BERMUDA and the Furness Bermuda Line by
Piers Plowman and Stephen Card (self).

Did you dad serve in Bermuda Furness Line? If he did, I know I can get the Bermuda Maritime Museum (the publisher) that they will send a copy for you! Please any information on service on the MONARCH of other Furness would be appreciated and will keep the info in the museum files.

Stephen

Stephen J. Card
29th May 2014, 18:39
With more thoughts..... merchant vessels were sometimes used as Armed Merchant Cruisers.... and were officially as on of HM ship.... as in HMS QUEEN OF BERMUDA.... HMS ALCANTARA etc. Later the QUEEN was switch to trooping... and she was then as HMT QUEEN OF BERMUDA. Likewise MONARCH OF BERMUDA was HMT... HM Troopship. It is possible that the ship were 'on charter' with the MOT... and could have been used as On His Majesty Service... On His Majesty Ships.... instead as not the same as postal service.

Possible?

Stephen

chief's daughter
29th May 2014, 20:05
OK Chief's Daughter.... here it goes. I hope the dates are right. Would be great if I can get it for you...

In July 1940, MONARCH OF BERMUDA was one of three ships - along with the two Polish liners BATORY and SOBIESKI - assigned to "Operation Fish", transport of the bulk of bullion and other precious items of the British government, valued of 192 million pounds, to safety in Halifax. MONARCH OF BERMUDA alone carried 40 million pounds worth of gold. The valuable cargo was transport by train from London to Glasgow, and then by tender to the liners lying at anchor off Greenock. Daparting the Clyde on 5 July, the three liners were provided with a special escort, including battleship HMS REVENGE and cruiser HMS BONAVENTURE and destroyers.

Within a couple of days of leaving the Clyde, the convoy ran in heavy weather. MONARCH OF BERMUDA and the other liners were under instructions not to slow down under any circumstances, so the continued at top speed through the storm. The escorts, unable to keep up, gradually fell behind, leaving the liners and their valuable cargo unprotected. The fourth day out , violent avoiding action had to be taken when two torpedoes were sighted approaching MONARCH OF BERMUDA, but she managed to avoid them. The three liners arrived safely in Halifax on 12 July. A couple of days ago later, the battered escorts also reached Halifax.

Resuming her duties as a troopship, MONARCH OF BERMUDA was sent to Halifax, carrying 875 women and passengers on the westbound voyage, returning with 1,328 troops. MONARCH OF BERMUDA remained permanently on the Atlantic trooping run for some time, and also some trips into the South Altantic.

ETC.....


From: QUEEN OF BERMUDA and the Furness Bermuda Line by
Piers Plowman and Stephen Card (self).

Did you dad serve in Bermuda Furness Line? If he did, I know I can get the Bermuda Maritime Museum (the publisher) that they will send a copy for you! Please any information on service on the MONARCH of other Furness would be appreciated and will keep the info in the museum files.

Stephen

Thanks for that Stephen. My dad was Eric Deverell and worked for Furness Withy before working for Shaw Savill. We now know that dad was promoted from 6th to 5th Engineer during the Monarch of Bermuda bullion trip. Any further information you have would be fantastic.

Thank you

King Ratt
29th May 2014, 20:14
OHMS means Only Hindhus Muslims & Sikhs. Or so I was informed many, many years ago.

spongebob
29th May 2014, 20:43
When merchant ships became armed merchant cruisers during WW2were they crewed by MN or RN personnel ?
Union Co's Monowai was one I knew of as was Shaw Saville's SS Pakeha which was fitted with false hull plating to mimic a naval vessel and given a different name prefixed HMS.

Bob

Hugh MacLean
29th May 2014, 21:03
When merchant ships became armed merchant cruisers during WW2were they crewed by MN or RN personnel ?
Union Co's Monowai was one I knew of as was Shaw Saville's SS Pakeha which was fitted with false hull plating to mimic a naval vessel and given a different name prefixed HMS.

Bob

Bob,
The MN crew had the opportunity to sign on what was known as T124 Articles. They retained their MN pay and conditions but became subject to the Naval Discipline Act. For all intents and purposes they were classified as RN until the ship was returned to owners.

Regards
Hugh

Stephen J. Card
29th May 2014, 23:40
Grog Rations All Round!

Stephen J. Card
29th May 2014, 23:43
When QUEEN OF BERMUDA as 'HMS' as an AMC she carried both MN and RN personnel. Mostly as Captain RN and other posts, but a lot of MN were in all ranks. For a good converted liner to AMC needed a good crowd to keep it going.

Stephen

ben27
29th May 2014, 23:58
good day hugh maclean.sm.today.06:03.re:foreign or "o.h.m.s" #20.you are correct about sign on t124x,i did.we got our mn pay,wore navy uniform,took orders as a r,n,personel,demobed at end of war in pacific.regards ben27

ben27
30th May 2014, 00:07
good day spongebob.m.today.05:43.re:foreign or "o.h.m.s".#19.bob you say the monowai was o.h.m.s.during the war,i was on her in the 50s.did you know anybody on her during the war.i.e.russian convoy's.regards ben27

Stephen J. Card
30th May 2014, 01:22
Ben,

Found all the one spot to find the career of MONOWAI...


Here you go....

http://www.nzmaritime.co.nz/monowai/monowai.htm


Excellent site.... information and quite a photos.


Stephen

spongebob
30th May 2014, 01:45
Thanks for that Stephen, it is a great website indeed and if all our old ships had a history resume like the Monowai's there might not be enough room on the Ethernet.
I went on board her while she was in the Calliope dry dock at Devonport in the 50's and still remember those massive reciprocating engines that dwarfed those of the Lake class naval frigates that I worked on. It was said that she was the largest twin screw reciprocating steam engined ship still afloat at the time of her retirement.
There was a legend kept alive at the Devonport dockyard that claimed that when the ship went to Devonport for her conversion to an armed merchant cruiser the ship's grand piano disappeared and was never found!

Thanks again

Bob

ecb
30th May 2014, 04:17
I have One Of me Dad's Discharge Book's in front of me, Franconia 6 March 1940/29 March 1940"Govt Service" written, Franconia 11 April 1940/26 June 1940 "O.H.M.S". stamped in.

chief's daughter
30th May 2014, 07:31
You men are soooooo interesting :)

Stephen J. Card
30th May 2014, 16:11
Honestly I'd rather chat to seafarers than any else. Would you rather chat to your bank manager?!!!! Heavens!
Knowledge can only be better if we listen.... old and young!

Meanwhile...

Can you list the ships your father sailed in?

Furness & Shaw Savill.... there is a real connection. Of course the MONARCH OF BERMUDA after the war went to Shaw Savill as the NEW AUSTRALIA. I sailed with Shaw Savill for a brief stint but met a few people that work on both companies.

There is a group on the internet..

www.furnessbermudaline.com

Lot of members from the Furness ship, Shaw Savill, PSNC, Royal Mail, Prince Line etc. They just had a reunion a few weeks ago. Next big one is to be 2016.... 50 anniversary of the demise of the QUEEN OF BERMUDA and OCEAN MONARCH.

Two years ago I met a fellow who was Engineroom Storekeeper... on the QUEEN and the MONARCH from the 1930s. Late 90s.

Again, try with the list of the ship.

Stephen

ben27
30th May 2014, 23:57
good day stephaen.j.card.sm,yesterday.10:22.#25.re:foreign or "o.h.m.s"thank you for your reply re:monowai.great link.regards ben27