All the articles beginning with the latest

Last Post

Last Post - click to read moreSadly Mac did not live to see his dream materialise. But he would no doubt have been delighted that the statue has been erected as he envisaged many years ago, on the foreshore at Port Melbourne looking out at the entry to Port Phillip Bay, the point from where as a young midshipman he left for WW II and from where his ashes were scattered on 3 September 2014, on the outgoing tide. Read the article.

MAC GREGORY’S VISION TO BE UNVEILED Ceremony will commence at 10.00am on Friday 27 November 2015

Visitors to Ahoy will be pleased to know that Mac’s long held dream to erect a bronze commemorative statue of a World War II sailor “Answering the Call” is to be unveiled by Vice Admiral Tim Barrett AO CSC RAN Chief of Navy and Patron of the Naval Heritage Foundation of Australia Inc. Read the article.

I am honoured to have known you a little Mac

I am honoured to have known you a little Mac, and I am thinking of you and your family. RIP with your fellow shipmates. I salute you Mac. Read the article.

Condolences from a baby Bracegirdle

I am so sorry that this consummate gentleman has died and Mac was an inspiration to my late Father, to myself and many more. Read the article.

Condolences - Pattie Wright

I met Mac back in 2009 when I was doing the early research prep on work for a biography of CPO Ray Parkin - HMAS Perth. Read the article.

Mac Was My Inspiration - Bruce M. Petty New Zealand

Mac Was My Inspiration - Bruce M. Petty New Zealand - click to read moreI met Mac in Melbourne over ten years ago on my way to New Zealand, where I now live. Even before I met Mac I interviewed him long distance for a book I was writing about naval officers in the Pacific War...


 Read the article.

Rest in Peace Sailor - Ron Riml USA

Ships Bell CanberraI served aboard USS Canberra from 1966 through 1968, and was lucky enough to visit Melbourne on her cruise there. Best ship I was ever assigned! Read the article.

Rest In Peace Dear Friend Mac - Matthias J. Maurer Germany

 Read the article.

Condolences - John Magee

He had an interest in HMS Pathfinder and had contacted the Queensferry History Group.



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Condolences - Francie Mendelsohn USA

 Read the article.

Condolences - Catherine Forrester

 Read the article.

Condolences - Michael Burton Finland

I wrote and asked him about the convoy RB1 which sailed from USA and England, he published the article I sent. Read the article.

Condolences - LCDR Henry Hall MBE OAM RAN (Rtd)

As an Ord.Sea. Second Class I served with him on HMAS Australia in 1939. We also served on HMAS Canberra at Savo Island 1942. Read the article.

Top Bloke - David Angwin

 Read the article.

Fantastically Impressive Website - Ken Muhr

I knew him only in electronic communication, but I was struck by his kindness, friendliness and enthusiasm. Read the article.

Condolences - Heather Hamer

 Read the article.

Remarkable Career - Orjan Lindroth

Thank you for your reply and sorry to hear that he has passed away. Read the article.

Great Inspiration - Anne McCulloch

He was a great inspiration to the Cubs and also to the other leaders who were in the group. I hope the happy memories of times spent with him will comfort you all at this time of parting. Read the article.

Condolences David Lloyd

 Read the article.

True Gentleman - Lance McDermott

Unfortunately, I only met Mac twice. Mac struck me as a true gentleman and I am saddened that I won’t have the opportunity to get to know him better.



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Educational Website - John Shaw UK

 Read the article.

Not Forgotten Thanks To Website - Anne Warnes

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Knowledgeable Gentleman - Joshua Phelps

 Read the article.

Knowledge Will Be Missed - Kathy Rockwell

His knowledge will indeed be missed. Read the article.

The Final ‘Passage’ - David Davies United Kingdom

So without Mac we would not have known what fate befell the "King Lud" My Father believed that this ship was heading to South Africa from Trincomalee, which is what he told me, and that was all he knew about that loss. Read the article.

Terrific Work - Dennis Whitehead USA

Your father did terrific work and it is most appreciated. Read the article.

Remarkable In His Career - Cameron Smyth

I was glad to be able to contact some of the family of Nestor crew through your Father’s site. Many thanks for that opportunity. Read the article.

Patron of the Victorian Artificial Reef Society - John Lawler

Mac visited the EX-HMAS Canberra FFG-02 whilst she was being prepared for scuttling as an artificial reef of Ocean Grove. Here is a picture of that visit. click to read moreMac visited the EX-HMAS Canberra FFG-02 whilst she was being prepared for scuttling as an artificial reef of Ocean Grove. Here is a picture of that visit. Read the article.

Tremendous Legacy From An Amazing Man - Duncan Matthews

Your father has (in his web-page) left a tremendous legacy for so many seafarers/genealogists/historians, and I trust that this will sustain you and the family at this time. What an amazing man. Read the article.

We have had a suggestion that a Gallipoli Oak tree could be planted next year in honour of Mac ... Read the article.

The Legacy of Mac Gregory - An Officer and a Gentleman - Rex Williams

Another legacy left to us by Mac is the ‘Answering the Call’ project which is so near to coming to fruition, and which will be located on the foreshore at Port Melbourne. Mac signed the contract with the sculptor shortly before he died and we look forward to its completion early next year. Read the article.

A Legacy of Scholarship and Information - Ian Pfennigwerth

...we should give thanks that we had him amongst us for so long and were privileged to have the benefit of his friendship and his enthusiasm for the Navy and for the NHSA. He leaves a legacy of scholarship and information that could not have been assembled otherwise. Read the article.

Grand Legacy - Tom Sanger

We never met except by email ... I was able to share on your website the recollections of my grandmother, Rhoda Thomas, who was a passenger on Athenia ... None of this would have happened were it not for “Ahoy.”


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Amazing Legacy Supporting The World Over - Linda

In one of the articles on your dad's website there is an image of someone from the back and I believe it to be my mother's father. We only have one tiny image of him in the family and none of the other three, so even this back image is hugely important to us - thanks to your father.  Read the article.

Remembering Mac - Ron Strachan

I have had a lot to do with Mac over the years personally and on committees. Mac was a navy man through and through, he will be sadly missed. Read the article.

A Fine Historian Who Will Be Missed Around The World For His Wit And Wisdom

I never met Mac, although I feel as though I did as I had quite a few email exchanges with him over the years. During one of the last conversations I had with him I said that I’d drop in and see him in Melbourne some time. He replied that I better not leave it too long.  Unfortunately I did. Read the article.

A Tribute to our Friend and Colleague 'Mac' - Rex Williams

Mackenzie Gregory was a compassionate, giving man with a passion for Naval History. Read the article.

Our Committee was deeply saddened to learn of Mac’s recent passing - Military History & Heritage Victoria

His life was rich in experiences and his wisdom and grace were widely respected within our military history circles. As our Vice-President, Mac was a tremendous supporter and magnificent ambassador for our organisation. Read the article.

Tributes and Remembrances  - Mac Gregory Mackenzie J. Gregory
(9 February 1922 - 27 August 2014)

Collected tributes on a single page. Read the article.

Index to Tributes and Remembrances in memory of Mackenzie J Gregory
(9 February 1922 - 27 August 2014)

Index to tributes on a single page. Read the article.

Sadly Missed by the Naval Community - David Blazey, Naval Officers Club Committee

Mac was a wonderful supporter of the Victorian Division activities, and especially to the Victorian Chapter of he Naval Historical Society. Read the article.

A Wonderful Gentleman - Peter Whitelaw, Chairman – Gallipoli Oaks Project Committee

He was an active member of our Advisory Committee and we appreciated his insight and enthusiasm. Read the article.

Great Man RIP - Marcus Fielding

May this great man rest in peace. Read the article.

Farewell good and trusted friend - Rex Williams

CDR Mackenzie Gregory RAN Rtd was my colleague, trusted friend and mentor. To say that I will miss him in the years ahead is an understatement! Read the article.

My tribute to Mac - John Shannon

I am ex RAAF and know little of the Navy. I met Mac when he was ADC to Governor General McKell.... I was Secretary of a Canberra Hockey Club and Mac approached me about joining the club. Read the article.

Tribute: Vale - Lieutenant Commander Mackenzie ‘Mac’ Jesse Gregory, Royal Australian Navy (Retired)

Click to read article“It was 1.43 a.m. when it all started. I could see six Japanese cruisers plus a destroyer 3,000 yards away blasting away at us with 8 inch guns and torpedos.” He remembers saying – “My God, this is bloody awful.” More than 80 Australian sailors died or were mortally wounded as Japanese shells slammed into the ship, which caught fire and was later scuttled. Clutching his Officer of the Watch issued binoculars he would lucidly tell the story some 70 years later and conclude with the reflection “I was very fortunate.”  Read the article.

Tribute: "Rewarding Friendship" from Terry Kearns, USA

Working with him for the last 13 years has been one of the most rewarding things in my life. Though we never in person except via two phone calls, I consider him a close friend. Read the article.

A Tribute to Mackenzie Gregory from Sandy Nelson, Aotearoa, New Zealand

Mac helped me a tremendous amount with the research for my children’s book ... It was very special to me that I was able to dedicate my story to Mac, and to meet him and his wife Denise when my family and I visited Melbourne in 2011. Read the article.

From the Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral T. W. Barrett AO, CSC RAN

I am delighted to know that the Naval Heritage Foundation of Australia will continue on and I am honoured to accept your invitation to be the Foundation's patron. Read the article.

Mac Gregory’s long held dream to erect a naval memorial to eventuate

Click to read more.Visitors to Ahoy will recall that many years ago Mac announced that he had founded the Naval Heritage Foundation of Australia Inc. with one of its purposes being to commission artists to create a statue to commemorate and symbolize all Naval personnel in Victoria.

Louis Laumen has commenced work on the clay model and it is anticipated that the bronze statue will take approximately eight months to complete. Mac had hoped to unveil it in mid April 2015, prior to the Centenary of ANZAC.

 Read the article.

Goodbye Mac - Mackenzie J. Gregory (9 February 1922  - 27 August 2014)

Mac Gregory, R.I.P click to read moreMac Gregory’s family wishes to advise his many friends and legion of Ahoy followers that Mac died on August 27th, 2014.

We have created a new email and welcome your tributes and remembrances.


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A Tale of Two Stories, Correcting the injustice done to Eric Geddes, R. A. A. F.

The following article concerns two stories, one is true and one is false. The true story is told by Eric Geddes, Royal Australian Air Force and the accuracy is confirmed by Captain Emile I. Bonnot, United States Navy.The false story is told by Rear Admiral Samuel Eliot Morison, United States Navy. Read the article.

Correcting the injustice done to Eric Geddes, R. A. A. F. Sole survivor fights to clear WWII shadow

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Sunday 9th February 2014 Today I celebrate my 92nd Birthday

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Krait story updated in January 2014

Now in January of 2014, this 21 metre, 60 tonne vessel is to be lifted from the water and preserved as a permanent display at the National Maritime Museum at Sydney's Darling Harbour. Read the article.

SS Pfalz target of First Angry Shot OF WW1 Fired by a 6-inch Gun Battery at Point Nepean

Click to read articleI believe that the 6 inch battery at Point Nepean had just been informed by telephone that we were at war with Germany the ship was to be stopped or sunk. it had fired a 100 pound 6 inch shell across Pfalz's bows to land some 50 yards to starboard ... Read the article.

How High Can Birds Fly?

Click to read articleI was sitting in my chair the other morning gazing out of our third floor apartment window, as a flock of seagulls sped by. In my mind they triggered the question, /just how high can birds fly? Read the article.

The Enigma of Sir Anthony Eden

But like Churchill he was careful not to publicly decry Chamberlain and his government, both men were hoping to to be invited to rejoin the government benches, but it was not to be. Read the article.

Tragedy and mayhem at Washington Navy Yard Monday September 16, 2013

The Washington Navy Yard is the oldest US Navy's shore establishment established on October 2 back in 1799. Read the article.

A Mac for a Mac

Click to read the articleWith a christian name of Mackenzie always shortened to Mac it was entirely appropriate that I should purchase a Mac Computer. Read the article.

List of World War II Convoys

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The U-Boats versus Convoy SC121

On March 6, 1943, 59 ships formed up as SC121 and sailed out of Sydney, Breton Island in Canada, bound for Liverpool UK...Too few escorts caused SC121 to lose fourteen ships with one more damaged. Read the article.

Uranium for Japan via German U-Boats

As Germany was close to defeat, she wanted to assist her Ally Japan by sending shipments of uranium via three U-Boats. There is very little published or known about this subject. Read the article.

Picture of Felix von Luckner

Click to read the article Read the article.

Julia Gillard versus Kevin Rudd?

Who will lead the Australian Labor Party to the next election? Read the article.

In Memory of Bull Allen

This short film tells the little-known story of Leslie 'Bull' Allen, brought up in hardship in Ballarat in regional Victoria, to become a courageous, complex war hero Read the article.

Medals for Lieutenant Commander Mackenzie J. Gregory RAN

Click to read more. Read the article.

The Saga Of American Freighter City of Flint

An SOS had been read by an empty Norwegian Tanker, Knute Nelson, a luxury steam yacht Southern Cross from Norway, three British Destroyers Escort, Electra, Fame, who were escorting HMS Renown, and finally a United States freighter SS City of Flint. Read the article.


This year THE AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING COMMISSION invited me to do the TV commentary covering the navy in this Anzac Day Parade. Read the article.

Marvellous Melbourne Movies From 1910

Ernest Higgins: Marvellous Melbourne Queen City of the South (c1910) Movies from 1910 Read the article.

National Trust ( Vic ) Gallipoli Oaks Project

click to read moreAs part of its commitment to celebrate and preserve our environmental heritage, the Trust plans to propagate up to 2000 juvenile Gallipoli oaks to be planted in Victorian primary school grounds during remembrance ceremonies in the period 2015 to 2018. Read the article.

Nancy Wake, click to read moreThe ashes of Australia's most decorated World War II servicewoman, former saboteur and spy Nancy Wake, have been scattered at a ceremony in France. A heroine in France, which decorated her with its highest honour, the Légion d'honneur, as well as three Croix de Guerre and a French Resistance Medal - ABC News Updated Mon Mar 11, 2013 9:20am AEDT Read the article.

December 7, 2012, 70th. Anniversary of Pearl Harbor

On Friday December 7, 2012, we recall the cowardly and treacherous act of Japan attacking without any warning, the United States Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor 70 years ago. Read the article.

HM Troopship Plassy

Plassy - click to read moreDuring the Boer War, Plassy was one of around 50 liners that carried over 150,000 troops to the war – an average of 5,500 soldiers per year each. Read the article.

Athenia Survivors from Knute Nelson landed at Galway

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HMAS Sydney 11 - Relatives request for help

Wes Olson is gathering data for a second book about HMAS Sydney II and he has noted that the following men all have letters or diaries in the AWM which he wants to quote, but there are no contact details for the donors. So he needs to make contact with descendants of the following men to gain permission. Read the article.

Athenia Torpedoed new book by Professor Francis M. Carroll

Athenia Torpedoed new book by Professor Francis M. Carroll - click to learn more"Cynthia Harrison deserves special thanks for rescuing at an estate sale, and then making it available on Mac's Web Log, the only known copy of Judith Evelyn's vivid memoir of her experiences on the Athenia." Read the article.

The Laconia Incident

Realizing his error, Hartenstein immediately launched a rescue operation. Hundreds of survivors were picked up, including civilian women and children, with many crammed inside the submarine, on the upper deck and a further 200 survivors in tow aboard four lifeboats. Read the article.


The Australian Broadcasting Corporation has invited me to join their radio broadcast team that covers the Anzac Day march. Read the article.

Review of Ray Parkin’s Odyssey by Pattie Wright

Click to read the articleI was fortunate to know Ray quite well, I visited him at his home in Ivanhoe, where his back yard ran down to the Yarra River, and the house was replete with many of both his paintings and sketches. Read the article.

MHHV Inc - Military History & Heritage Victoria

Click to read the articleFirst annual meeting will be held at Victoria Barracks in the Blamey Room on November 7. Too much of our Military History falls by the wayside to be lost to posterity, let us record Personal accounts for following generations. Read the article.

Fantastic shot of USS Constitution firing 21 gun salute on August 24th last

Click to read the article Read the article.

Weymouth and Portland in Dorset UK are in the news for Olympic Sailing Events

These recent Olympic Sailing events bring back fond and happy memories of a time immediately post WW2, when we thoroughly enjoyed the rather sleepy town of Weymouth, and the British countryside, surrounding the County of Dorset. Read the article.

Convoy Diary by Mac McLeod

Mac McLeod was an RAF Spitfire pilot who flew in the defence of the small island of Malta in the Mediterranean. He was the author of Malta Diary (see "Battle for Malta") and Convoy Diary which are both reproduced on my AHOY Website. After Convoy Diary by Tony Barton click to read moreMac died his friend Jimmy Peck inherited all of Mac's work, on Jimmy's death his Nephew, named Jim after his Uncle received all this material.

What a tortured journey all this material has travelled, so easily along the way it might well have fallen into an abyss to be lost to posterity.

 Read the article.

Navy remembers Canberra (I)

HMA Ships Gascoyne and Huon positioned themselves over the final resting place of HMAS Canberra (I), fell silent and remembered the 84 men who lost their lives during the Battle of Savo Island. Read the article.

Review by Mackenzie Gregory of the new book by Robert. A. Caro

This 4th. Volume of Robert Caro's monumental work on Johnson which was commenced back in 1982, is easily his best work on this subject.
 Click to read moreThis 4th. Volume of Robert Caro's monumental work on Johnson which was commenced back in 1982, is easily his best work on this subject. Read the article.

Visit to China May 8/21 2012

Trip to China - click to read moreTo actually stand on the Great Wall we needed to negotiate about 15 stone steps with a large riser about 18 inches in height. This was the last hurdle, and it was suggested I might stay here. Not likely, I was not giving up at this final climb, with Denise and Jason pushing and an American tourist at the top pulling I made it, and finally I was standing on this section of this wonderful engineering feat, built here to keep out the maurading horde of Mongols. Read the article.

The Fury Trilogy by Peter Thompson

Shanghai Fury: Australian Heroes of Revolutionary China. Click to read morePeter Thompson's latest tour-de-force, his third book in the Fury Trilogy is Shanghai Fury: Australian Heroes of Revolutionary China. Read the article.

COMPENDIUM: 200 Photostream images of heavy cruiser HMAS AUSTRALIA [II]. Part I. Oct 19, 1939, Damien Peter Parer [1912-1944]

Click to read morePresenting a compendium of links to the 200 [approx] images of the County Class cruiser HMAS AUSTRALIA [II], RAN 1928-1955] showing on this Centenary Photostream. With many outstanding photographs little seen previously, we believe it is one of the outstanding visual records of one of the RAN's most outstanding ships, in peace and in war.  Read the article.

I was invited to present a paper "The Loss of HMAS Canberra 1942."

"Other highlights of the conference included the first hand account of the loss of HMAS Canberra in August 1942 by veteran Mackenzie Gregory and a special guest speaker from the National Defence Institute of Japan." Read the article.

Sydney Harbour Bridge 80 years old

Happy 80th birthday to Sydney Harbour BridgeOn March 19, 2012 the Sydney Harbour Bridge turned 80 years old, and has become a world icon that signifies Sydney. Read the article.

Rhonda Thomas' personal account - "Experiences of an Athenia Survivor"

Athenia artifacts from the Orr family - click to read moreAfter Athenia was sunk on day one of WW2 a great deal was written about the loss and we decided to devote the Athenia Pages to the subject on our AHOY site. The latest addition is an account by Rhonda Thomas of her experiences in that ship on the day of the torpedoing. 

Nothing beats the written personal account of a survivor, and this piece adds to our knowledge and understanding of a momentous event on the very first day of the start of WW2.

 Read the article.

Can the PM hold the fort and have any chance of winning that battle? right now Tony Abbott is poised to be our next Prime Minister in 2013.  The Federal Parliamentary scene remains a fascinating study for Canberra watchers, of which I must confess I am one of them. Read the article.

Quilt for a double bed for my 90th. birthday

Quilt for a double bed for my 90th. birthday click to read moreJayne has made by hand this beautiful patchwork quilt for a double bed for my 90th. birthday. Read the article.

Federal Politics: Gilliard Versus Rudd

What a fascinating time in Federal politics, never in my lifetime has there been such an upheaveal in Canberra. I look to future developments with great interest. Read the article.

 Read the article.

Kershaw. Ian. The End The Defiance and Destruction of Hitler's Germany

Kershaw. Ian. The End The Defiance and Destruction of Hitler's Germany click to read moreThis tour de force by History Professor Ian Kershaw lays out Germany fighting for its very existence. It gives reasons for a continuation of the war against the Allies. Read the article.

Stunning Aerial Photography

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The U-Boats that Surrendered - U-1407 (HMS Meteorite) in the Royal Navy - 1945 to 1949 - by Derek Waller

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The Fate of the Japanese Submarines which Surrendered in 1945 - The Development of Allied Policy by Derek Waller

The Potsdam Agreement signed by the British, Americans and Russians on 2 August 1945 sealed the fate of the majority of the Kriegsmarine U-Boats which had surrendered at the end of the European war. The result of the decisions at Potsdam was that 118 U-Boats which had surrendered on either side of the Atlantic were sunk in deep water before 15 February 1946, and that each of the three Allies was allowed to retain only 10 U-Boats for testing and experimental purposes. Additionally, the Potsdam Agreement determined the fate of four of the seven ex-U-Boats which had surrendered under the Japanese flag to the Royal Navy in Singapore and Indonesia in August 1945 at the end of the war in the Far East. Read the article.


A remarkable series of photos by Roger Fenton from the Crimea War – thanks to Jason McGregor for finding these… Read the article.

Edward Francis Browne 1925 - 2011

Frank served as a Telegraphist in the 8 inch gunned Heavy Cruiser HMAS Shropshire, a gift to the RAN from Winston Churchill to replace her sister ship HMAS Canberra, sunk at the Battle of Savo Island on August 9, 1942.

Edward Francis Browne, you will be greatly missed. Your flag has flown high and with great distinction, We Salute You!

 Read the article.

Japanese Surrender- Amazing Footage Sept 2, 1945

Some unique and historical film on the Japanese surrender aboard USS Missouri In Tokyo Bay on Sunday September 2, 1945. Read the article.

The sinking of cruiser HMAS Sydney by disguised German raider Kormoran by David Kennedy


I have  been involved in researching the Sydney-Kormoran clash for some 18 years after meeting Hilfskreuzer crewmen. I was asked to testify at the two major Australian inquiries into the action -- the joint parliamentary committee (JSCFADT)  in 1997-99 and Commission of Inquiry in 2008-09. I have decided to finally "go ashore" but I have put together the following as a result of my most recent research. I have the written permission of the two authors (David Stafford and Graham Freudenberg) to include their book material. I am a career journalist. I hope you may find a place  for it on your site.

David Kennedy

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Slipper Fits For Gillard. New Speaker in Federal Parliament

He appeared to enjoy this role, yesterday he calmly tossed a hand grenade from the Speaker’s Chair to announce his resignation on this the very last day of the parliamentary sitting of the Lower House for 2011, he reported he had tendered his resignation to the Governor General who accepted it. Read the article.

The approaching 70th. Anniversary of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor

A piece by James Bowen about the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.  Read the article.

Collins Class Submarines

 Read the article.

Fresh images of Anzacs unearthed in London museum

Fresh images of Anzacs unearthed in London museum click to read mroeHUNDREDS of photos depicting Australian soldiers before their departure for the battlefields of World War I have been discovered in a London museum. Read the article.

Navy divers find uncharted submarine off Rabaul, Papua New Guinea

TWO Australian and New Zealand mine hunters have discovered what is believed to be the wreck of a World War II Japanese submarine off Rabaul's Simpson Harbour in Papua New Guinea. Read the article.

Countries that I have visited

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Sir Ian Kershaw, Author

Sir Ian Kershaw, Professor of Modern of History at the University of Sheffield must be the Doyen amongst world writers who cover Hitler, the Nazis and Germany. Read the article.

Naval Heritage Foundation of Australia Inc. plans to erect a 7 foot six inch bronze statue of a WW2 Sailor in square rig.

The Commonwealth Government gave the Bay Street Drill Hall to the then Liberal Government of Victoria, they allowed CIRCUS OZ t o occupy it, and they retain possession in 2008.

There is not a single Heritage Marker to denote the Navy was ever in this area, and some 15,000 Naval Men and Women would have passed this way.

We invite visitors to the AHOY web site who may wish to donate towards the cost of the Answering The Call statue to read this article to see how you may help.

 Read the article.

Salvage of SS Garisoppa carrying a fortune in silver sunk in 1941

Click to read more Read the article.

The U-Boats that Surrendered, U-Boats in the Royal Navy post-May 1945 by Derek Waller

At the end of the war in Europe in May 1945, 156 U-Boats surrendered. Of these, 10 were allocated to each of the three Allies (UK, USA and USSR) later in the year, one was repaired and commissioned into the French Navy, four were repaired and commissioned into the Norwegian Navy, three were scrapped in the Norwegian ports in which they had surrendered, two were sunk by the US Navy in February 1946, and 116 were sunk by the Royal Navy in Operation Deadlight between November 1945 and February 1946. Read the article.

The U-Boats that Surrendered, Operation Deadlight By Derek Waller

The Royal Navy’s Operation Deadlight, which was the executive action which led to the sinking of 116 German U-Boats off Northern Ireland between 27 November 1945 and 12 February 1946, was the culmination of the long-held determination of the British Government to ensure the total elimination of the German Navy’s submarine fleet after the end of WW2. Read the article.

Interview with the Melbourne Leader about the 10th. Anniversary of 9/11

Click to read more of Mac's inteview with the Melbourne LeaderThanks for letting me interview you, it’s a great story. I was very happy to be able to write about it. Kind regards, Chris Gillett. the Melbourne Leader.


 Read the article.

"John Howard 'saved my life on 9/11'" I was interviewed for the ABC News On LIne 10th Anniversary of 9/11

Hi Mackenzie, Here’s a link to the story on you. As I said, some of our interview might pop up on ABC radio too. Thanks again for your time. You were very interesting to talk to – one of the best chats I’ve ever had in this job. All the best, Sarah Collerton


 Read the article.

A Mobile Phone

When my son Raymond upgraded his mobile he passed the older one to me, but it sits in the top drawer of my filing cabinet uncharged and blissfully silent. Read the article.

Into The Maelstrom - The Wreck of the Rohilla by Colin Brittain

Into The Maelstrom - The Wreck of the Rohilla = - click to read moreThe angle at which the Rohilla was jammed on the Scar presented her broadside to the waves. Her bow had risen over the edge of the rock forcing the stern lower into the water, the sea constantly washed over the well decks and spray was thrown high above the height of the bridge. Captain Neilson ordered all hands to lifeboat stations but five unfortunate seamen were known to have been washed overboard and drowned as they made their way to posts. With twenty lifeboats there were more than enough places for those on board, provided that the boats could be launched. Read the article.

I was awarded a Pride of Australia Medal

Pride-of-Australia-Medal Click to read more"At just 13 years old he signed up to the navy.

"Now, 76 years later, Mackenzie “Mac” Gregory is still fighting to promote the sacrifices of Australia’s naval forces."

 Read the article.

The Atlantic Ocean is an entralling book

Click to read moreSimon Winchester has written an entralling book about the greatest ocean in the world, the Atlantic. Read the article.

Chief of Navy Speech - Launch of the 'Pride of the Nation' Exhibition - 8 Jul 11

On Friday the 8th. of July 2011 our new Chief of Navy Vice Admiral Ray Griggs AM, CSC. RAN. opened at the Shrine of Remembrance Melbourne an exhibition Read the article.

Story about my first trip on HMS Renown with V.I.P. Winston Churchill, September 1943 by Victor Humphrie

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Don Boyle R.I.P.

Don Boyle R.I.P. click to read moreI will deeply miss his friendship and our working together to achieve our dream... the finality of our Answering The Call projectRead the article.

The Japanese Version of Op Deadlight - story of the IJN submarines that surrendered at the end of the war in the Pacific by Derek Waller

 Read the article.

Dummy Wooden Battleships in WW2

Dummy Battleships in WW2, click to learn moreThese dummy ships at Scapa Flow had a tendency to drag their anchors in any sort of storm, and thus became a menace to the real Home Fleet. Read the article.

Trilogy of The War At Sea. Written and self published by Mackenzie Gregory.

Trilogy of The War At Sea. Written and self published by Mackenzie Gregory.Volume 1: War in the Pacific. 1941-1942, And So To Tokyo, Volume 2: WW2 The War at Sea, Volume 3: Fighting Sailors And Famous Sea Battles Down The Ages. Read the article.

The lighter side of the Royal and Royal Australian Navies

On the Malta Station in 1902 HMS Aboukir had a Bear mascot, HMS Bachante had a Donkey; HMS Diana had a Nanny-goat and HMS Venus had a Gazelle. Read the article.

US President Woodrow Wilson on April 6, 1917 declared

Germany's unrestricted U-Boat warfare was only too successful, by the end of February 1917, 781,000 tons of shipping had been sent to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean. Read the article.

WHO’S  SORRY  NOW? by Liam Nolan

 Read the article.

A Night to Remember by John B. Manbeck

She piqued my interest when she said that she had spent a night in a leaky lifeboat in 1939. Read the article.

Lock Shiel of the Loch Line comes to grief on Thorn Island. ( she was a sister ship to the ill fated Loch Ard wrecked off the coast of Western Victoria, Australia)

Click to read moreThe ship, however, carried 7,000 cases of the finest Scotch Whiskey most of which was washed ashore. Such a welcome bonanza proved too much for some. Read the article.

Today in Submarine Force History March 24, 2011

USS LANCETFISH (SS-296) was decommissioned after serving the shortest-ever term as a commissioned naval vessel Read the article.

First Use of Poison Gas In Modern Warfare

Of course the use of poison gas in warfare had been proscribed under the Hague Convention of 1905, and Germany as well as all the other WW1 combatants had signed it. But Germany was prepared to buck this agreement, although she had been a signatory to it, by the end of 1915 both England and France were using chemical weapons as frequently as was Germany.  Read the article.

The Tragedy of the Treaty of Versailles

Versailles was the spark for the advent of WW2, its harsh actions and humiliation of Germany and its people proved too much, and so the "Dogs of War" were again unleashed... Read the article.

Royal Navy & Marine Customs and Traditions

The study of naval customs and traditions of 1775 to 1783, like the study of the larger body of history itself, is not an exact science, and the material stated herein is the product of much research, substantiated by at least some evidence, and the assistance of the noted authority on the subject, LTCMD A.D. Taylor, C.D., R.C.N. H.M.S. Richmond, Craig V. Fisher Read the article.

Field Marshal Walter von Reichenau. 1864-1942

Field Marshal Walter von Reichenau. 1864-1942 click to read more...He is not easy to evaluate as an Army Commander only commanding at the highest level for some six weeks, hardly enough time to soberly judge him. He was not one of Hitler's compliant Field Marshals, but he was intelligent, ambitious and ruthless in pursuit of his career and promotion. Read the article.

Whither Australia in 2011 and Beyond?

Given a hung Parliament at the national level in Australia right now, where is it taking us? Read the article.

Should Australia Fear the Rise of China in the Pacific Arena?

As China starts to play a more important role in the Pacific, should that pose any threat to Australia? Read the article.

PLUTO. (Pipe line under the ocean.)

At this distance in time, I suggest we tend to forget some of the incredible achievements associated with the 1944 landings on the west coast of France.

Pluto or the pipe line under the ocean is a case in point.

 Read the article.

Former Prime Minister John Howard, discusses his recently published memoirs: Lazarus Rising

Click to read moreOn Tuesday November 9, 2010 I attended a book dinner function with former Prime Minister John Howard. I was placed on John's right with Denise next to me. He sat down, looked at me, and said I Know You, I responded yes.... Read the article.

Mac Gregory, recipient of Shrine of Remembrance Medal for 2010

Mac Gregory recipient of Shrine of Remembrance Medal for 2010 - click to read moreOn the evening of Wednesday November 10, 2010, I was amongst the five selected finalists, and at 10.30 PM was declared the winner for this year. I was completely overwhelmed to be accorded this honour.  Read the article.

Ewald Uechtritz, caught up in WW2, was to serve in the German U-Boat arm on opposite sides to his former class mates

Here is a fascinating story of a former School Captain, Ewald Uechtritz (1935-1938) who had a German Father. Read the article.

Musing on where I believe Adolf Hitler made some basic errors in his conduct of WW2

 Read the article.

Thursday October 21 2010

 Read the article.

Andrew Roberts new book The Storm of War was published by Penguin Books in 2009

Click to read more ...It has been said that if in one's life time you buy but one book about WW2 then this should be that book.

I agree entirely with those sentiments.

Of all the books I own or have read in 50 years about WW2, The Storm of War stands out as the definitive book on that subject.

 Read the article.

Chilian Miners Rescued

Click to read more ...

The last of the Chilean miners, the foreman who held them together when they were feared lost, was raised from the depths of the earth Wednesday night - a joyous ending to a 69-day ordeal that riveted the world. No one has ever been trapped so long and survived. In contrast to the mine collapse in Chile, The Senghennydd Colliery Disaster in Wales back in 1913 resulted in 439 miners dying.


 Read the article.

Amazonian Manatee, an almost extinct herbivorous marine mammal.

Click to read mroeReportedly this Manatee frequents placid lakes close to Amazon tributaries in the Amazon basin, but these marine mammals do not venture into salt water. They can grow up to three metres and can weigh in at up to
550 kilograms (1,200 pounds.)  Read the article.

General at Sea

Robert Blake - click to read moreThe term General usually refers to an Army rank in command of soldiers, but in the time of Oliver Cromwell, we find the term General at Sea being used for the first time. Read the article.

Passenger ships lost in WW2 as a result of enemy action

Click to read moreThe world passenger ship fleet suffered the loss of 144 vessels through hostilities during in the six years of the
Second World War. This was more than the entire peacetime losses for all reasons in a century. A further 30 passenger ships that were converted into naval vessels were either sunk, or retained for military duties. Over
three times as many large passenger ships were lost in World War 2 than were sunk in the four years of World War 1 Read the article.

Click to read moreIn his acknowledgements he graciously notes : " In all naval matters, I have consulted Lieutenant-Commander Mackenzie Gregory, RAN (retired) and am most grateful for his guidance." Read the article.

Australian Soldiers Fight As Volunteers With The British Army at Archangel, Northern Russia in 1919

Click to read the articleAfter WW1 ended in 1918, members of the Australian Imperial Force still in the United Kingdom resigned from the AIF to join the British Army as Volunteers to fight at Archangel in Northern Russia with British forces in 1919. All in all, a poor decision by the British Command to try and intervene in a Civil War in Russia. Read the article.

Little workhorses, the Bathurst Class of Australian Minesweepers in WW2.

Bathurst Class of Australian Minesweepers in WW2 - click to learn moreThe Bathursts were seen as 'maids of all work' by the RAN. The two main purposes the ships were intended for were minesweeping and anti-submarine escort. However, the corvettes found themselves performing a wide range of duties, including troop and supply transport, bombardment, assault landings support, survey and hydrography mapping, and providing aid to disabled ships. Read the article.

Silver Jubilee Review of the Fleet By King George V.At Spithead July 16, 1935

Click to read the articleIn all, some 157 ships took part, they covered the range of all types of warships. Battleships, Battle Cruisers, ( including HMS Hood, the largest warship afloat world wide, to come to an ignominious end in her fight against the German battleship BISMARCK, in 1941) Aircraft Carriers, Cruisers, Destroyers, Depot ships, Hospital ships, Minesweepers, Sloops, Submarines, Surveying ships, and Training ships. Read the article.

My 88th. birthday

Click to read the articleOn Tuesday February 9th. 2010 it was my 88th. birthday, and we celebrated at my eldest daughter Jayne's home with a lovely dinner with my family, and 6 other friends. Read the article.

Amazing pictures of the wreck of Hospital ship Centaur

Amazing pictures of the wreck of Hospital ship Centaur taken from a remote vehicle some 2 kilometres below the surface of the ocean off the Queensland coast.


 Read the article.

Australian Women at war, WW1, WW2 - Nursing the A I F in the Great War

Mother ANZAc - click to read morePrior to Australia's Federation in 1901, each colony controlled its own defence force, of which the nursing services formed a part. In July 1903 the nursing services of each colony joined together to form the Australian Army Nursing Service. Read the article.

100,000 Hits on Ahoy's Home Page

Ahoy has a lot of hits - click to read moreAt 2.45 AM on Friday November 13th, AHOY Mac's Web Log passed a milestone. Read the article.

Early Visits of Russian Warships to Australia

Read moreIn 1862 the Russian Corvette Svetania entered Port Phillip Bay and fired a salute to Queenscliff, it was an embarassing moment for the locals, as they could not return this salute, as they were not supplied with gunpowder. Read the article.

The Battle of Quiberon Bay November 20, 1759

The Battle of Quiberon Bay November 20, 1759 -- click to read moreIt was during the Seven Years war between England and France that the Battle of Quiberon bay was fought. At the time it appeared France was preparing to invade both England and Scotland, with both troops and their ship transports massing around the Loire estuary. Read the article.

A cold morning watch with Bob Loder, HMAS Shropshire, 1946

Click to read moreWe had just finished a very cold Morning Watch ( 4 AM to 8 AM ) on the ship's bridge, I as Officer of The Watch, and Bob as my second OOW, he was still to qualify for his Watch Keeping Ticket. Read the article.

HMAS Canberra II finally scuttled at 1400 on Sunday 4th. October 2009

HMAS Canberra 11 sunk for dive site - click to read morePuffs of smoke were observed to mark the firing of all the demolition charges, the ship gracefully slipped below the waves, no fuss, in but two minutes she was gone. Four concrete blocks will anchor her by the bow and stern, and over the coming weeks the ex HMAS Canberra will be inspected, and I would anticipate will be declared safe for diving. Read the article.

HMAS Voyager Model by Ken Taylor

A 5 metre long model of HMAS Voyager built by Ken Taylor - click to read the articleKen Taylor devoted 9 years and I imagine a large amount of his home living space to house the keel when laid, and the model as it grew to the finished wonder. It is on a large scale of 1.24, not too many modelers are that ambitious. Read the article.

67 years since HMAS Canberra was sunk with the loss of 84

67 Anniversay of the Sinking of HMAS Canberra - click to read moreAs the years stumble by, today, August 9, 2009 is the 67th. anniversary of the sinking of the RAN heavy cruiser HMAS CanberraRead the article.

Anzac Day, Melbourne 2009

Mackenzie J Gregory leading Anzac Day Melbourne 2009 parade - Click to read moreThis year I was honoured by being invited to lead the Melbourne Anzac Day March. Read the article.

New book on Athenia by Cay Rademacher

 Read the article.

Eric Leon's amazing graphics of HMAS Canberra

Eric Leon's amazing graphics of HMAS Canberra - click to see morework in progress Read the article.

Bizarre Meeting. Two atomic powered submarines, one British, one French crash into each other in the vast reaches of the Atlantic Ocean.

The odds of two independently operating Nuclear powered submarines running into one another given the vast amount of sea room available  in  the Atlantic Ocean must be enormous. Read the article.

The Centennial of the triumphant return of the Great White Fleet to Hampton Roads, Virginia Feb 22nd 1909-2009

 Read the article.

Letters from the Western Front in WW1: Private Leonard Frank Lamb AIF from France to his Mother and Sister

Click to read moreMy wife Denise has a few letters written by her Uncle, Private Leonard Frank Lamb AIF from France to his Mother and Sister. The importance of mail from home is mentioned often, I can attest from being at sea all of WW2, just how morale was improved with the arrival of mail from the home front, and how we longed to have news of our loved ones in Australia. Read the article.

The Mystery, the Enigma, that was General Charles Andre Joseph Marie de Gaulle

General Charles Andre Joseph Marie de GaulleWas he a great statesman and President? If you had posed that question to Charles de Gaulle, I have little doubt that his response would have been YES! I am a biased observer, much disenchanted by his performance at Dakar, and being placed in "Harm's Way" as a result, so I should not respond to my own question.
 Read the article.

Who was the first Australian Prime Minister who was born in Australia?

I was musing on which Australian PM was our first home grown one to actually be born here in Australia? and was wildly out... Read the article.

"At War in the Pacific" has been reviewed

At War in the Pacific by Bruce Petty, Reviewed by Michael OConnorA review of Bruce Petty's book AT WAR IN THE PACIFIC, in which I wrote a chapter about the Battle of Savo Island, the only non American in the book invited to contribute. Read the article.

It is Sunday December 7th. 2008, and the 67th Anniversary of Japan's deadly attack on Pearl Harbor

It is Sunday December 7th. 2008, and the 67th Anniversary of Japan's deadly attack on Pearl Harbor - click to read the articleI had just arrived home in Melbourne on that very day of 1941, from almost 18 months involved in the Battle of the Atlantic, and now I knew that with the mighty United States as our fighting ally, we would prevail, and beat both Hitler and Japan. Read the article.

A Close Run Thing, Almost hit the last bump in a long road

I awoke on the morning of Tuesday November 25th. with severe bruising on the back of both hands...That last road hump loomed up, but I was not yet ready to hit it, life is far too exciting, much remains to savour and achieve, I just was not ready to give up YET! Read the article.

Letter of thanks from an Athenia survivor, to the CO and crew of HMS Electra, one of the rescue destroyers

Letter of thanks from an Athenia survivor, to the CO and crew of HMS Electra, one of the rescue destroyers - click to read the article Read the article.

Photos of aircraft and HMS Hermes, the first aircraft carrier built for the Royal Navy

Photos of aircraft and HMS Hermes, the first aircraft carrier built for the Royal Navy - click to read moreShe was with HMAS Australia when we were at Dakar for the de Gaulle debacle there in September of 1940. Read the article.

Remembering HMAS Canberra 1, sunk at The Battle of Savo Island, 9th. of August 1942

USS Blue alongside burning Canberra, 
 USS Patterson stands by astern - click to learn moreNavy Week Service at the Shrine of Remembrance,

Sunday 26th. of August 2008.

Guest Speaker: Lieutenant Commander Mackenzie Gregory RAN. R'td.

 Read the article.

The South African Fleet Review, Africa's oldest navy parades its newest frigates

The South African Fleet Review - click to read moreThis article originally appeared in We gratefully thank Mr. Cusack for permission to republish his article in Ahoy. Read the article.

More information about Nurses in the Hospital ship Anglia: Mrs. Mitchell, Nurse Walton, Nurse Meldrum, and Nurse Rodwell

Nurse Rodwell - hospital ship Anglia click to read moreIn my article, "Auxiliary Hospital Ship Anglia, mined off Folkestone on the 17th. of November 1915. 127, or 164 Dead," I had reported that only one nurse was on board, this was incorrect, and I am indebted to Hamish Hall from both the US and Canada who has kindly posted me some detail from The Nursing Times of November 17, 1915, Survivor's story of Nurses' Heroism, and In OUR ROLL OF HONOUR from The British Journal of Nursing dated December 11, 1915, Nurse Rodwell ( a relative of Hamish ) is discussed. Read the article.

Two Ships Called Canberra from the Signals Magazine

Click to read moreAt Darling Harbour in Sydney, the Australian National Maritime Museum is located, it has a  Daring class destroyer, HMAS Vampire, and HMAS Oberon, an O class submarine at its wharf.
Its quality magazine for members is named Signals, its Editor, Jeffrey Mellefont was recently in Melbourne. He called at our apartment on St Kilda Road to spend quite some time interviewing me, the end result is a 6 page feature article published in Signals Issue Number 83 for July-August 2008. I am quite flattered, and you can read his contribution here. Read the article.

Deserters from Great White Fleet in Melbourne September 1908

Deserters from Great White Fleet in Melbourne September 1908 - click to read moreWhen on September 5th. 1908, 15 Battleships composing the US Great White Fleet sailed out of Melbourne, they left onshore 154 sailors from throughout the fleet, who had decided not to go back to their ships, but to stay with the girls they had met in Melbourne. How fascinating if one could but find some of the descendants from those who stayed behind in Melbourne in September 1908. Read the article.

A nice letter from Syndal Probus Club

I spoke to them on the morning of Wednesday 24th. of September, my subject: Enemy Submarine Activity off the Australian Coast in WW2. Read the article.

Keep your eye upon the donut and not upon the hole

As you wander on through life, brother,
Whatever be your goal,
Keep your eye upon the donut,
And not upon the hole. Read the article.

Opening by Mackenzie Gregory, of the Port Melbourne Historical and Preservation Society Exhibition to remember the visit of the US Great White Fleet to Melbourne. 29th. August/5th. September 1908. 29th. August 2008.

US Great White Fleet to Melbourne - click to read more100 years ago on this very day, the 29th. of August 1908, Naval history was made here in Melbourne. The United States Great White Fleet, so named, as each of the 16 mighty battleships was painted a gleaming white, with gold scroll work on their bows, they sailed in through Port Phillip Heads at 11AM on the morning of August 29, 1908. Read the article.

Lancastria Association of Scotland is tracing ex-servicemen and/or their families, who were on board HMT Lancastria when she sank in St Nazaire, France, during WW2

Loss of HMT Lancastria at St Nazaire - click to read moreI am writing on behalf of the Lancastria Association of Scotland and I wondered if you could perhaps, through your website, help our Association trace ex-servicemen and/or their families, who were on board HMT Lancastria when she sank in St Nazaire, France, during WW2. Read the article.

Eulogy, Saturday August 9, 2008 is the 66th. anniversary of the sinking of HMAS Canberra 1

Click to read moreSaturday August 9, 2008 is the 66th. anniversary of the sinking of HMAS Canberra 1 at the Battle of Savo Island, on the next day at the Naval Chapel on Garden Island Sydney a Memorial Service will be held, I was asked to present the eulogy, but my Melbourne speaking engagement on the Great White Fleet to the St Kilda Historical Society has precluded me from being in Sydney. Chris Johnson, the grandson of a former crew member will do it on my behalf, Read the article.

The Victorian Colonial and Royal Australian Navies, and the visit of The Great White Fleet to Australia, August 20, to September 5, 1908

the visit of The Great White Fleet to Australia, August 20, to September 5, 1908 - click to read moreThis was the commencement of an alliance between Australia and the United States that still flourishes in 2008, in 2001 we celebrated the 50th. anniversary of the ANZUS treaty. Read the article.

Contrasts day by day during WW2 in the Pacific

It was good to be alive, but you never knew what awaited the dawning of the next day, once again the whole ship's company awake, alert, wondering what a new day might bring, perhaps nothing, just the sheer boredom of one more day of steaming the Pacific Ocean. On the other hand it may hold a determined attack on your ship from a dedicated Kamikaze... Read the article.

Unveiling a picture of HMAS Shropshire at the Ringwood RSL Club on July 9th. 2008

Memorial window for HMAS Shropshire at Naval Chapel Garden Island SydneyJuly 9th. 2008, I unveil a replica of a HMAS Shropshire painting, at the Ringwood Returned and Services League Club, and here is the brief unveiling speech: Read the article.

Pacific Fury, new book on the Pacific.

Pacific Fury, a just published hardback by Random House in June 2008, and written by Peter Thompson, an Australian journalist and writer who lives in London.Pacific Fury, a just published hardback by Random House in June 2008, and written by Peter Thompson, an Australian journalist and writer who lives in London. Read the article.

The Wonderful County Class 8 inch Gunned Cruisers

The Wonderful County Class 8 inch Gunned Cruisers - click to read moreWe salute the sterling service of all 13 County Class Cruisers in WW2, and out of my time at sea or overseas for all of WW2, I spent 4 and a half years in this class of heavy cruiser, and I remember them with affection, they brought me home safely, and at last it was all over. Read the article.

Signal to British Pacific Fleet by Admiral Bruce Fraser on the day of signing the Japanese Surrender

Signal to British Pacific Fleet by Admiral Bruce Fraser on the day of signing the Japanese Surrender - click to read moreMy friend Kevin O'Neill ( we served together in the light cruiser HMAS Adelaide back in WW2 in 1942) was the Warrant Officer Gunner in HMAS Nizam, part of the BPF. In that destroyer, the Officers drew lots as to whom would win their copy of this signal, and Kevin was the winner. Read the article.

New Zealand Hospital ship Maheno winds up a wreck on Fraser Island

New Zealand Hospital ship Maheno winds up a wreck on Fraser Island - click to read moreA few days later, on July 9th 1935 she drifted ashore and was beached on Fraser Island. During the Second World War, Maheno served as target bombing practice for the RAAF. Read the article.

Australian Light Cruiser HMAS Sydney 11, her Life, Death, and Finding the Wreck

Australian Light Cruiser HMAS Sydney 11, her Life, Death, and Finding the Wreck - click to read moreThe families of the 645 Officers and Sailors lost on November 19, 1941, at long last they can put to bed where their loved ones lay in peace. Read the article.

A Brief history of Ships Bells

Ships Bell CanberraBells have a centuries-long tradition of varied use in the navies and merchant fleets of the world. They have been used for signaling, keeping time, and providing alarm. Their functional and ceremonial uses have made them a symbol of considerable significance to the United States Navy. Read the article.

Ten Interesting events in a Long Life

Click to read moreHere are ten interesting events from my past, in no particular order. Read the article.

Australian Navy chaplain Fr William Evans rescued at the Battle of Savo Island the destroyer USS Patterson

Fr William Evans' click to read moreFr William Evans' desired to commemorate in some permanent way the friendship between Australia and the United States. The Regina Coeli Memorial church in the Sydney suburb of Beverly Hills was the realisation of Fr Evans’ dream – dedicated as a memorial to “Australian American Friendship in War and Peace”.



 Read the article.

Batons of The Duke of Wellington

Batons of The Duke of Wellington - click to read moreAbsolutely amazing that the Iron Duke would be so honoured by the crowned heads of Europe, I cannot cite any other Field Marshal who managed to be awarded any Baton other than his own country's one. Read the article.

Memorial Plaque for HMAS Canberra, sunk at the Battle of Savo Island on August 9, 1942 to be replaced

The new Labor Government, via the Veterans' Department have now made a grant available that will enable the Canberra/Shropshire Association to go ahead and make arrangements for a replacement plaque to be designed, cast, transported to Honiara, erected, and dedicated. Read the article.

TSS Letitia, sister ship to ill fated Athenia, had a checkered career

 Read the article.

Britain launches first mammoth Submarine in the Astute Class of 4 new boats

Britain launches first mammoth Submarine in the Astute Class - click to read moreBritain launched a massive sub that can hear a ship from across the Atlantic in June 08, 2007. She is four years late and a massive $900 million over-budget. (Wonder what Total Cost is?)  But when the Royal Navy's super-sub HMS Astute finally arrived, she made for an awesome sight. An incredible new submarine to break all previous records in size, equipment, armament etc. Read the article.

HMAS Penguin exercises their right to Freedom of Entry to the City of Mosman

HMAS Penguin exercises their right to Freedom of Entry to the City of Mosman - click to read more Read the article.

Extracts from James Dixon's Diary, a WW1 sailor serving in HMAS Australia, flagship of the RAN

James Dixon - click to learn moreWW1 service men and women have died, and with them their stories that helped to shape our nation in its early days after Foundation of the Commonwealth of Australia on January 1st. 1901. I strongly believe that a record such at this one from James deserves to be preserved, hence this attempt to pay tribute to a young RAN sailor who soon found himself and his ship mates serving in the unforgiving North Sea, far from home and family,with the ever dreaded coaling ship always  looming close by. Read the article.

Field Marshal Friedrich Wilhelm Ernst Paulus ( 1890- 1957 )

Field Marshal Friedrich Wilhelm Ernst Paulus - click to read morePromoted to Field Marshal in unusual circumstances, and made Military history by being the first to hold that rank and be captured, never to be forgiven by Hitler. Read the article.

A Japanese Guadalcanal Diary by Master Sergeant John Blair, USAR

A Japanese Guadalcanal Diary - click to read moreThe Guadalcanal campaign was a turning point of World War II in the Pacific. A vital factor in determining the outcome was U.S. logistics superiority. The diaries of Japanese soldiers at Guadalcanal offer sobering testimony to the privations caused by logistics shortcomings. Read the article.

The Pel's Fishing Owl ( Scotopelia Peli )

Pel's Fishing Owl - click to read moreWhilst watching a documentary about the Kalahari I was fascinated to see Sea Eagles and a bird species I was totally unaware of Pel's Fishing Owl at work catching fish. One of the world's largest Owls, can have a five foot wing span, it has the habit of fluffing up its head feathers to appear even bigger. Read the article.

The Demise of the Steamer Screw ship SS Admella on August 6, 1859 with the loss of 89 lives

The wreck of SS Admella - click to read moreThe wreck of SS Admella still remains the greatest loss of life at sea in the history of European settlement in South Australia. The sea is a hard taskmaster, and some 7,303 shipwrecks lay on the ocean floor of the Australian coastline, many of them around both South Australia and Victoria. Read the article.

Henry Reid's recollections of the sinking of Athenia

I saw a woman standing on deck, she was wearing a long brown coat with a big fur collar. I grabbed this woman’s arm and yelled “mom”. She looked at me and it wasn’t my mother. However, she took my arm and said “Stay with me”. She would not let go of my arm. Read the article.

SS City of Launceston, a short life

SS City of Launceston, a short life - click to read moreWithin about an hour the ship collided with the incoming 500 ton ship SS Penola out of Adelaide and under the command of Captain Snewin. Penola rammed into the starboard side of the City of Launceston, her bow penetrating the Captain's cabin and water started to rush into the stricken vessel. Read the article.

WW2 Russian Arctic Convoys. Were they worth all the losses of both life and ships?

WW2 Russian Arctic Convoys - click to learn moreWinston Churchill described the Russian Convoy Route as: " The worst journey in the world." Of 813 ships that set out in convoy for Russia, in general from Iceland, 33 returned to port for various reasons, and the 601 who battled to make the return 3,000 mile journey, some 103 in all were sunk, plus 18 naval ships.

 Read the article.

New Memorial at Chatham to record names of Royal Navy and Dominion Destroyers sunk in WW2 over 1939-1945

Recently unveiled by Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh. Click to learn moreRecently unveiled by Prince Phillip, Duke of Edinburgh. Read the article.

RAN Reservists at Gallipoli, 1915

RAN Bridging Train behind the front line at Sulva Bay 1915 - click to read moreA great deal has been written about the Diggers of the AIF at Gallipoli, and the birth of the ANZAC tradition. However, very little is known about a team of Australian Naval Reservists who made up the RAN Bridging Train who spent some four months ashore at Sulva Bay, north of Anzac Cove, and who were the last to leave in the evacuation of December 1915. Even today, 92 years after this extraordinary effort at Gallipoli, the exploits of the RAN Bridging Train remain little recognised. Read the article.

European Discovery of Spectacle Island and the new Naval Heritage Centre in Sydney Harbour

Spectacle Island, and the new Naval Heritage Centre in Sydney Harbour - click to read moreA piece on Spectacle Island, and the new Naval Heritage Centre in Sydney Harbour. For many years Spectacle Island was an ammunition and powder store and a repository of RAN artifacts. Read the article.

A report about HMS Electra and the sinking and rescue of some of her passengers, by Able Seaman Jack Taylor

 Read the article.

Two totally different Submarine Campaigns in WW2: The German U-Boats and the Battle of The Atlantic, and the US Submarine Fleet in the war against Japan in the Pacific

Two totally different Submarine Campaigns in WW2 - click to read moreIn the Battle of the Atlantic over a long period of WW2, the German U-Boats waged a bitter battle against the Allied Merchant Ships in Convoy and their Escorts. In the Pacific, US Submarines choked off the Japanese Merchant Fleet, and their tankers carrying vital petroleum products to the Homeland, to bring that country to its knees. Read the article.

Margaret and Elizabeth Orr both survived the sinking of RMS Athenia on Sunday the 3rd. of September 1939. Margo Farnworth's artifacts from her Mother and Grand Mother

Athenia artifacts from the Orr family - click to read moreMargo Farnsworth of Calgary Canada has written to me to indicate that her Mother and Grand Mother, Margaret and Elizabeth Orr had both survived the Athenia sinking. In December 1939, her Grand Father made up a special scrap book for his wife Elizabeth, it is now in Margo's possession, and holds some press reports from both sides of the Atlantic, the plan of the ship's accommodation, three telegrams sent to her family by Elizabeth, a survivor list of passengers and crew members, and a list of those survivors who needed hospitalisation in Glasgow. Read the article.

Loss of Emigrant Ship Exmouth, bound from Londonderry for Quebec, 220/240 drowned in May of 1847.

A tragedy whereby a ship load of emigrants bound for Canada to make a new life for their families, no doubt bouyed at the thought of setting off on this voyage is wrecked with the loss of 220/240. It is sad to read in the list of deaths about so many young children, and infants reportedly still dependent on their Mother's breast. Read the article.

SS Strathallan torpedoed by U-562 December 21st. 1942, 250 Nurses and 4,000 troops are rescued

Strathallan on fireStrathallan took part in Operation Torch, the Algerian landings in North Africa on November 1st. 1942. The following month she left the Clyde on the 12th. her destination Oran, having loaded 250 Queen Alexandra Nurses, and 4,000 British and US troops. Read the article.

US Submarine Grunion probably found on August 22nd 2007 after her mysterious disappearance 65 years ago

US Submarine Grunion probably found - click to read moreOnce again the dedication and love of three sons coupled with that vital ingredient PERSISTENCE, has been rewarded with what appears to be the finding of the wreck of the USS submarine Grunion, lost for over 65 years in the icy waters around Alaska. Read the article.

Lieutenant-Commander 'Fairy' Filmer dies at Age 91, July 15, 2007

Lieutenant-Commander 'Fairy' Filmer - click to read more

Lieutenant Commander "Fairy" Filmer, who has died aged 91, helped to sink a German cruiser in a dive-bombing attack; spent five years as a German prisoner-of-war; and later was a master of merchant ships in the South Seas. 

 Read the article.

Carson's Field Northern Territory 1942. Renamed RAAF Base Tindal. Operational with Hornets in 1988.

Carson's Field Northern Territory 1942. Renamed RAAF Base Tindal - click to read moreIn fact Carson's Field never heard the ominous rumble of four engined bombers warming up prior to take off. No aircraft ever flew from Carson's Field. Read the article.

Wrecks of two Royal Navy Firefly Aircraft found in Port Phillip Bay, missing for 60 years

Fairey Firefly - click to read more

The two British aircraft crashed into the bay during a training exercise in July, 1947. Four people were killed but only one body was recovered at the time, but divers Paul Roadknight and Steve Boneham located the remains of one pilot still inside one of the wrecked aircraft about 20 metres below the surface of the bay.

 Read the article.

Capture of the German Line Ship Hobart, at Port Phillip Heads on August 11th, 1914, plus the German Mercantile Signal Book.

Capture of the German Mercantile Signal Book August 11th, 1914 - click to read moreI believe this account of an incident from very early in WW1, shows how a single event when initiative prevails, may have a much wider consequence on the outcome of that war. Read the article.

HM Naval Base Portsmouth

HM Naval Base Portsmouth - click to read moreI served in Portsmouth's Naval Schools of Gunnery, Signals, and Navigation taking my Sub Lieutenant's course in 1941. Post war I was appointed to HMS Vernon at Portsmouth in 1946, as part of my courses to qualify as a Specialist Torpedo- Anti Submarine Officer. Read the article.

A History of Submarine USS Searaven who rescued 33 Royal Australian Airforce personnel from enemy held Timor in April 1942

USS Searaven - click to read moreThe adventures of this party constitute what may be one of the most graphic and dramatic escapes in Australian war history. Read the article.

German Field Marshal Otto Moritz Walther Model. ( 1891- 1945 )

German Field Marshal Otto Moritz Walther Model. 1891- 1945 - click to read moreModel was the Field Marshal that Hitler always sent for when the going was really tough, his contemporaries in the Army are usually associated with a particular campaign, eg, Rommel with North Africa, and Paulus with Stalingrad, but Walther Model was used in areas that were critical to the regime. He earned the nickname of " Hitler's Fireman. " Read the article.

Billy McGee in England plans a Memorial to Raymond Victor Steed. The youngest recorded Service death in WW2.

Raymond Victor Steed - click to read moreIn WW1 many young men, indeed some were still but boys, joined the Armed Services, and a host of them died at a very young age. WW2 was no exception, and here is an example, a boy, Raymond Victor Steed, still in his 14th. year, cut down before he reached manhood. Read the article.

Battle of Navarino. 0ctober 20th. 1827.
The last battle to ever be fought between sailing ships

Battle of Navarino - click to read moreCodrington's actions caused a large diplomatic incident, by opening fire ( although provoked ) when no state of war existed. He was recalled to London and though censured the Commons and Lords disagreed, he was cleared of disobeying orders and was soon awarded a Knight Grand Cross in The Most Honourable Order of the Bath ( GCB ) Read the article.

Enemy Submarine Activity off the Australian Coast in WW2

Enemy Submarine Activity off the Australian Coast in WW2 Click to read moreOver 30 months, 27 Japanese Submarines had been busy in Australian waters, their main thrust over 12 months between June 1942 and June 1943. 18 ships, of 86,600 tons were sunk off our east coast, and the small Mamutu in northern latitudes, another 25 ships had suffered some damage when attacked, but still survived. Read the article.

Four ships were originally owned by -- and ultimately disposed of -- one Navy, but spent some time in the service of another nation during World War II.

The aircraft carrier USS Robin (United States Navy)
The battleship Arkhangelsk (Soviet Navy)
The light cruiser Murmansk (Soviet Navy)
Patrol Boat No. 102 (Imperial Japanese Navy) Read the article.

A visit to Europe May 23-June 9, 2007, Mac's Travel Diary

A visit to Europe May 23-June 9, 2007, Mac's Travel Diary - click to read moreWe basically wanted to take a 7 day River Boat cruise from Passau in Germany to Budapest in Hungary and return. At each end we would graft on a few days in Munich, and after the river journey fly back to Budapest for four days. Read the article.

Survivors from Athenia rescued by Royal Navy destroyers, Escort, Electra and Fame, and landed at Gourock on the Clyde, Scotland

Athenia Survivors - click to read moreOver the years that AHOY has been trying to locate lists of survivors from the Athenia, torpedoed on Sunday the 3rd. of September 1939, the very first day of WW2, we have not found a consolidated list of those survivors rescued by Royal Navy destroyers Escort, Electra and Fame, and landed at Gourock on the Clyde at Scotland. Read the article.

German Aircraft Carrier Graf Zeppelin never to be commissioned

German Aircraft Carrier Graf Zeppelin never to be commissioned - click to read moreBy 1943 Adolf Hitler was not too interested in anything Navy, and the frustrated Raeder asked to be relieved, he was accommodated by Hitler, and Karl Donitz, the Submarine chief took charge. He was not at all interested in seeing an aircraft carrier gaining more focus than his beloved U-Boat arm, and all work stopped on Graf Zeppelin... Read the article.

Benito Mussolini Captured, and Rescued by German Commandos from Gran Sasso Hotel on September 12th. 1943

Benito Mussolini Captured, and Rescued by German Commandos - click to read moreIt took Otto and his men until September 8th. 1943 to locate where Mussolini was being held prisoner. The Commando Captain took a look via an aircraft at the Gran Sasso Hotel, high up in the Apennine Mountain range, and decided the only way to try and free Mussolini was by the use of Gliders. Read the article.

95th. Anniversary of the Sinking of SS Titanic, April 12th. 1912

Titanic Passenger List - click to read the articleWork in progress Read the article.

The Role of the War Correspondent

The Role of the War Correspondent - click to read moreWar has been reported on by intrepid war correspondents for many years, over time their role has changed, some times given a free rein, at others absolutely fettered, and under strict control and censorship by Head Quarters. Over time, the role of the front line war correspondent relying on his wits, ability, and taking the same risks as the fighting man in the thick of the action, has changed dramatically, we now seek the instant report by satellite, like that provided by CNN. Read the article.

Field Marshal Erich von Manstein. ( 1887- 1973 )

Field Marshal Erich von Manstein click to learn more

Given that both his natural and step father were Generals it may well have been expected that young Erich would walk in their footsteps to serve in the Army. There can be little doubt that of all Hitler's Field Marshals, Erich Manstein was the best and most brilliant.

 Read the article.

Pages from my Travel Diary. Formula 1 Grand Prix weekend Melbourne 2007. Our visit to Grovedale Olives, Kangaroo Ground

Our visit to Grovedale Olives, Kangaroo Ground - click to read moreEach year in March, the Formula 1 Grand Prix Circus rolls into Melbourne, our apartment on St Kilda Road Melbourne is but a stone's throw from the Formula 1 circuit around Albert Park Lake. The noise these beasts make is ear shattering, and to avoid that agony we decamp each year and get away to the silence of the Victorian bushland. This year we decided to spend two days at Grovedale Olives, a 25 acre property at Kangaroo Ground, about 40 kilometers from the central business district. Read the article.

Arctic Emblem from the UK Department of Defence

The Arctic Emblem - click to read moreTo qualify one needed to be in the Arctic Circle ie above 66 degrees 30 minutes North for at least a day in WW2. Read the article.

Wolf Packs slaughter ships in Convoys SC-7 and HX-79, in October 1940

Wolf Packs slaughter ships in Convoys SC-7 and HX-79 - click to read moreThis became one of the most famous Wolf Pack attacks between the nights of October 16th to the 19th, 1940. Convoy SC7 was repeatedly attacked by a pack of seven boats, sinking 20 ships out of 34 in the convoy. The very next night, convoy HX79 was attacked with further losses of 13 ships, making a total of 33 ships in 48 hours. These attacks mounted against the two convoys came to be known as “The Night of the Long Knives”. Read the article.

The Liberty Bell

Liberty Bell - click to read more"Proclaim liberty throughout all the land unto all the inhabitants thereof - Lev. XXV, v. x. By order of the Assembly of the Province of Pensylvania [sic] for the State House in Philada." Read the article.

Origins of Star Spangled Banner, by Francis Scott Key

The Star Spangled Banner - click to read moreKey was able to enter Baltimore, and later, at the Indian Queen Hotel, overcome with emotion and pride, he picked up his writing instrument and dashed down a poem, The Star Spangled Banner. It consisted of four stanzas, dedicated to the " Defence of Fort McHenry." Read the article.

Luftwaffe attack their own Destroyers on February 22nd. 1940

The aircraft now returned machine gun fire, seemingly assuring all the ships it was an enemy plane. But Max Schulz reported this aircraft was in fact friendly, one of her lookouts had spotted a German Cross on a wing, but no one else wanted to accept that report, especially after that 1st. exchange of gunfire.
 Read the article.

An interview with Captain F.A.J. Downer, CO of the Northern Spray with Convoy ONS 5

Captain F.A.J. Downer - click to read moreSeptember 1939 brought the outbreak of the Second World War and Capt. Downer laid aside his British India uniform for that of the Royal Navy. His service was mainly in corvettes and frigates, first taking part in anti-submarine patrols off Norway in the Narvik area, and then in the Western Approaches, based at Liverpool and Birkenhead. Read the article.

Operation Pastorious. German Saboteurs came by night in June of 1942

Click to read moreAdolf Hitler ordered the school to train agents whose task would be to infiltrate into the United States of America to destroy vital power plants, factories, and communications. Eight men were chosen, two naturalised citizens of the US, and six Germans who had at one time lived in the US. This group were given a crash course in the art of sabotage at Quentz Farm. Read the article.

Mary Muhr's WW 2 experience in New Zealand and sailing to England from New Zealand in 1945 to marry

Mary and Douglas Muhr wedding on 22nd February 1945. Click to read moreMy mother (of Scottish parentage) has also written about her experience in sailing to England from New Zealand in 1945 to marry my father, who she met during the war while he was a gunnery instructer out there.

A reader's story.

 Read the article.

Pearl Harbor Photos from December 7th, 1941

December 7th, 1941 - click to read the articleRemarkable archival photos Read the article.

Index for Hospital Ships on AHOY

Work in progress Read the article.

Index for Personal Stories on AHOY

Work in progress Read the article.

The mysterious disappearance of SS Yongala on the 23rd.of March off the North Queensland coast in 1911

SS Yongala - click to read moreAt the time Yongala went missing she was not carrying a radio, and so was not aware of any warnings going out on radio of the impending danger from the cyclone that caused her demise. Ironically at the end of her current voyage ( from which she did not arrive ) the ship was scheduled to go out of service for the time necessary to fit her with radio equipment, which if fitted earlier, may well have saved the lives of 122 crew and passengers who all perished. Read the article.

Saved by Walter Schmietenknop

Walter Schmietenknop "Saved" click to read to story about surviving the sinking of U-737U-767 was detected by the British Support Group 14. Fame attacked. She reported 2-3 hits at 95 feet, and U-767 was doomed, sinking in 240 feet of water.

Only one crew member from her complement of 50 escaped, and this was Walter Schmietenknop. He was picked up by HMS Fame and now tells his remarkable story, "Saved."


 Read the article.

Reg Young of Liverpool England was killed during The Battle of Malta 1942 aboard Melbourne Star. Handwritten account of The Battle

My uncle Reg Young of Liverpool England was killed during The Battle of Malta 1942 aboard Melbourne Star. My father-Reg's brother was a sergeant in the 6th Airborne-Parachute Regiment and was involved in the action at Pegasus Bridge. He died a couple of years ago in his 91st year.

The reason I write to you is that in my fathers papers I came across the attached hand written account of "The Battle" and I thought it may contribute to your other accounts of that period of the war.

 Read the article.

Athenia Manuscript authored by Judith Evelyn

Judith's Manuscript ( tied up with ribbon ) covered her sailing, being sunk, and rescued from the liner Athenia, in the first casualty of the WW2 U-Boat war in the Atlantic. The ship was sunk by U-30 on Sunday the 3rd.of September 1939 the very first day that WW2 had been declared.

93 passengers and 19 crew members died.

 Read the article.

Spitfires over Edinburgh in WW2

Spitfires over Edinburgh in WW2 - click to read more603 pilots flying the famous Spitfire Fighter, aided by their brothers in arms from Glasgow's 602 Squadron shot down three of the enemy aircraft. The Dornier 111 which crashed in East Lothia was the first German aircraft to be destroyed over Britain in WW2. A fourth bomber was accounted for by AA fire near North
Queensferry in Fife. Read the article.

Wreck of Japanese Midget Submarine M-24 that attacked Sydney Harbour on the 31st May/1st. of June in 1942, found at last

Wreck of Japanese Midget Submarine M-24 - click to read moreBan fired his second torpedo, to once more miss Chicago by some 4 meters, it ran aground on the East side of Garden Island, but did not blow up. Ban now successfully exited the harbour through the boom gate he had earlier entered, and took his Midget through Sydney Heads to the open sea, but never made the rendevous with his Mother Submarine, to disappear, his location and fate unknown over the next 64 years. Read the article.

Family of seven, only three survive sinking of Athenia

Family of seven, only three survive sinking of AtheniaWork in progress


 Read the article.

Remembering Roy. O Lucke, a Patriotic American, in Honour of the Anniversary of his 100th. Birthday

Roy Lucke landed on Omaha Beach in the Normandy Invasion and subsequently earned six battle stars, two valorous decorations (Bronze Stars) and two wound medals (Purple Hearts), and a Combat Infantryman’s Badge. The low point of his service was being among those cut off during the Battle of the Bulge and celebrating (if that word can be used) Christmas huddling with a few comrades on the edge of the Heurtgen Forest near the Belgian town of St. Vith. Read the article.

A few pictures of HMAS Canberra from Allan Young's (Ordnance Artificer in the RAN) scrapbook

Ordnance Artificer, John Rimmer - click to see more Read the article.

Index to Naval Operations articles on Ahoy

Operation Deadlight Chart - click to read moreSo that our readers who may be interested in articles on AHOY that covered a number of actions in WW2, and were prefaced by the term " Operations" in their title, and to make it simpler to access them, we have decided to consolidate this group under the heading: OPERATIONS PAGES, in the index on the left hand side of our Home Page. Read the article.

The Athenia Remembered: September 3, 1939-September 3, 2004 by Michael Poirier

Interviews with Athenia survivors - click to read more.Thanks to Michael Poirier who graciously allowed Ahoy to publish interview excerpts from his article, "The Athenia Remembered: September 3, 1939-September 3, 2004 in Voyage magazine, Titanic International Society, Read the article.

HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Repulse Survivors Association: Protect the final resting places of hero’s who died fighting for their country

Click to read more

We do not want to stop divers visiting the ships, But please do not enter. Please do not disturb the final resting place of these men.

 Read the article.

Shot at Dawn, WW1 Army Executions

The Memorial in England for those Shot At Dawn in WW1 - click to read moreWe now live in totally different times in 2006, back during WW1 it was deemed necessary to shoot 306 so called deserters or men showing cowardice to Make an example of them, no doubt to deter many others from following their example. Read the article.

Ships Present at Pearl Harbor, 0800 7 December 1941

Ships Present at Pearl Harbor, 0800 7 December 1941 - click to read moreThe U.S. carriers were not at Pearl Harbor. Read the article.

Only one Australian Serviceman is buried at Arlington National Cemetery

Pilot Officer Milne died on a World War II air mission on November 26, 1942. He was a member of a multinational flight crew whose remains were discovered in New Guinea in 1989. Since his remains, and those of the United States Army Air Corps Technical Sergeant (Joseph E. Paul), were individually unidentifiable, they were buried together in the same casket, in grave 4754, Section 34, Arlington National Cemetery. Read the article.

First Steamship makes history in crossing Atlantic Ocean. SS Savannah sails from Savannah to Liverpool in 1819

SS Savannah - click to read more"The steam powered vessel, the Savannah, has arrived at this port from the city of Savannah, Georgia, after a voyage of twenty seven days. This is the first ocean crossing by this type of boat and materially reduces the time formerly required for the Atlantic Ocean voyage." Read the article.

One of the US Navy's top WW2 Submarines USS Wahoo, lost in October 1943, found 63 years on by Russian Dive Team.

USS Wahoo - click to read moreThe US Wahoo Group takes as its task to seek out the whereabouts of five lost WW2 US submarines, in June of 2006, USS Legarto ( SS-371 ) was identified in the Gulf of Siam, now the wreck of USS Wahoo is found by a Russian Dive Team at the end of July 2006. Read the article.

Iron Knight sunk by Japanese Submarine I-21 in February 1943, wreck found June 2006

Iron Knight foundThe sea is forced to give up one more of it secrets so tightly held these past 63 years. The Iron Knight lies 135 meters below the surface of the Pacific Ocean, fishermen's nets snagged on her bridge, proved to be the key to her discovery. Read the article.

Shropshire Room Commissioned at HMAS Kuttabul

Shropshire was “recommissioned” into the RAN - click to learn moreOn Wednesday 5 July 2006 at 1030, the name Shropshire was “recommissioned” into the RAN, although this time not as a capital ship, nor even in a sea going capacity. The Shropshire Room was named in a ceremony at Maritime Command Headquarters within the grounds of HMAS Kuttabul at Potts Point in Sydney, continuing a name that served the RAN so well in WW2 and beyond. Read the article.

First newspaper report about Bernice Jansen being aboard Athenia when it was sunk by German U-Boat U-30, on the 3rd. of September 1939

Bernice Jansen - click to read moreAt this stage it was unknown if Bernice had survived. Its quite wonderful to get these reports from newspapers of that time. I acknowledge with thanks the generosity of Christy Velasco of California in sharing her records with AHOY. Read the article.

Adolf Hitler and his WW2 Field Marshals

Gross Admiral Donitz's Baton - click to read moreWork in progress

This article will cover 27 German Officers, 19 Army, 6 Luftwaffe, and 2 Navy. They will appear in alphabetical order, Army, Luftwaffe and Navy, selected in that way because of the number of Officers in each arm of the Service.

 Read the article.

I Like the Navy

I LIKE standing on the bridge wing at sunrise with salt spray in my face and clean ocean winds whipping in from the four quarters of the globe, the ship beneath me feeling like a living thing as her engines drive her through the sea.

Anon. R.A.N. (Retired)

 Read the article.

Survivors from Athenia picked up by the City of Flint, to be transported to Halifax

This list from the Times of London archives indicates that the majority of these survivors rescued from the Athenia which was torpedoed by German U-Boat U-30, on Sunday the 3rd. of September 1939, were Americans. Read the article.

Duke of Edinburgh in command of HMS Galatea, visits Australia for the first Royal Tour, in 1867

Duke of Edinburgh visits Australia for the first Royal Tour, in 1867 - click to learn moreThis tour was to last for five months, visiting Adelaide, Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, and Tasmania. In Victoria, a special Royal train was made up for the occasion, and the Duke travelled in it to provincial towns such as Bendigo, Geelong, and Ballarat. Read the article.

List of 455 Officers and sailors who were missing or killed when their three ships (Veteran, Boadicea, and Mourne) were sunk by German forces in WW2.

 Read the article.

Arthur John Curtin, 1918-2006

Arthur John Curtin, 1918-2006 - click to read moreToday, Friday the 30th. of June 2006, I was invited to speak at the funeral service for Arthur Curtin, he served with me in both Canberra and Shropshire, and served for many years on my Committee of HMAS Canberra/ HMAS Shropshire Association. Read the article.

The Athenia Page, index to articles about Passenger Liner Athenia

Athenia index - click to read moreGiven all the interest in the sinking of the Passenger Liner Athenia on the day WW2 declared, and the fact that we have recently found some of the lists for her survivors, and those who died, we have decided to consolidate all our references to her on this site, The Athenia Page. Read the article.

The Athenia Page, index to articles about Passenger Liner Athenia

Athenia index - click to read moreGiven all the interest in the sinking of the Passenger Liner Athenia on the day WW2 declared, and the fact that we have recently found some of the lists for her survivors, and those who died, we have decided to consolidate all our references to her on this site, The Athenia Page. Read the article.

Declarations of War in WW2

I am in total agreement about History being neglected as a subject to be taught in our schools today, but do feel there is a burgeoning interest awakening in our children today to learn about their forebears and the part they may have played in WW2. Read the article.

Submarines and ships in the Battle of the Atlantic on postage stamps

 Read the article.

US Balao Class Submarine USS Lagarto, found after 60 years in the Gulf of Siam

The memorial plaque placed on the stern of Lagarto - click to read moreThe crew of 86 from the US submarine Lagarto are part of the 3,500 US submariners who died from the 52 boats sunk in WW2. 61 years on, the US Navy has confirmed this wreck, now 100
miles off the coast of  Thailand, is that of USS LagartoRead the article.

List of 93 Passengers killed when Athenia was torpedoed by German U-30, on Sunday the 3rd. of September 1939

Athenia was torpedoed by German U-Boat U-30, on the day World War 2 was declared. No doubt the sterile black print of this list of passengers who died when Athenia was torpedoed, masks a number of poignant stories. Read the article.

Convoy UGS-40, under extreme enemy air attack. May 11th. 1944

Convoy UGS-40, under extreme enemy air attack. May 11th. 1944 - click to read moreConvoy UGS-40 had sailed from Norfolk Virginia, on the 22nd. of April in 1944, by the 11th. of May it was shaping a course for Bizerta in Tunisia, to be the target of the most intensive air attack on any convoy in this arena over the second half of WW2. Read the article.

U-22 sinks HMS Exmouth, 21st. of January 1940

HMS Exmouth, click to read moreU-22 lined up the escort, fired one torpedo which soon struck home, probably it hit a magazine which exploded, and the destroyer sank at 0444 ( 4. 44 AM ) taking the total company of 189 Officers and Sailors to their death. Read the article.

Belgian Trooper SS Leopoldville, sunk by U-486. Christmas eve 1944, and 783 US troops die

Belgian Trooper SS Leopoldville, sunk by U-486 - click to read moreAbout 2030 ( 8. 30 PM ) two explosions from deep within Leopoldville were heard, and the ship heeled sideways, and sank by the stern. Many of the troops were swept into the cold, rough waters off Cherbourg, the soldiers wearing heavy overcoats and equipment were soon in trouble, and many drowned. 1,400 infantrymen were saved, but 783 had lost their lives, the greatest loss suffered by US servicemen at sea, all at the hands of an enemy submarine. Read the article.

A nice thank you letter from the Shrine of Remembrance for my guest speaker appearance on the 19th. of April 2006

A nice thank you letter from the Shrine of Remembrance for my guest speaker appearance on the 19th. of April 2006 - click to read more Read the article.

The Launch of A STOKER'S JOURNEY by Darryl Nation

"A Stoker's Story," by Darryl Nation about his father, Andy Nation's, service in the Royal Australian Navy - 	click to read moreI am honored to dedicate a new book, "A Stoker's Story," by  Darryl Nation about his father, Andy Nation's, service in the Royal Australian Navy. Read the article.

Silver Salver presented to HMAS Canberra/ Shropshire Association in Queensland

Photo of a lovely Silver Salver presented to HMAS Canberra / Shropshire Association - click to read morePhoto of a lovely Silver Salver presented to HMAS Canberra / Shropshire Association in Queensland by the family of her Commanding Officer Captain CA G Nichols, DSO, MVO, Royal Navy. Read the article.

Convoy RB1

A new catalogue of Ahoy articles and letters about Convoy RB1 Read the article.

Meet Mac news paper article

Click to read moreThis interview featured in the Melbourne morning paper The Herald Sun dated today, Tuesday the 11th. of April 2006, Anzac Day is on the 25th, and the paper is wanting to involve schools in a competition to promote that day. Read the article.

World War 2 Leaders Featured on Postage Stamps

Click to learn more Read the article.

Massive Bronze Eagle recovered from wreck of Graf Spee

Huge Bronze Eagle from Graf Spee sunk off Montevideo in 1939 - click to read moreA huge Bronze Eagle 2 metres high weighing in at about 400 kilograms has been unbolted from the stern of this once proud German warship. Read the article.

HMA SHIPS Canberra and Shropshire, Radar Equipment Fitted in WW2

HMA SHIPS Canberra and Shropshire, Radar Equipment Fitted in WW2 - click to learn moreI served in HMAS Shropshire as a Lieutenant RAN from December 1944 to mid 1946, she had a wonderful ship's company and was a happy and lucky ship. The fact that we did not lose a man to enemy action was, I believe, largely due to her radar equipment fitted, and the great radar operators who manned them. Read the article.

Slaughter at Bari, Southern Italy. 2nd. of December 1943

Allied ships burn at Bari, December 1943 - click to read moreThis Bari raid was a disaster on two fronts. It was a Second Pearl Harbor, with 17 ships totalling 75,936 tons sunk, and another 7 ships with a tonnage of 27,289 tons heavily damaged by this sneak air attack by German aircraft, one of the Luftwaffe's success stories. Read the article.

Eight WW2 Leaders, a discussion about each of them

(work in progress) Read the article.

RAN Chief of Navy announces there will be another ship to carry the name of HMAS Canberra

In the future we will have another ship in the Royal Australian Navy bearing the name of HMAS CanberraRead the article.

Japanese Aircraft overwhelm Repulse and Prince of Wales on the 10th. of December 1941. 840 Sailors die.

Loss of Repulse and Prince or Wales - click to learn more. . . their loss could be sheeted home directly to Churchill, he had insisted against the advice of his First Sea Lord, on their deployment to Singapore, without ensuring these ships were to receive adequate air support, and as a result, 840 men died. Read the article.

Memorials of Melbourne

Memorials of Melbourne - click to read moreThe City of Melbourne has the good fortune to be endowed with some of the finest parks and gardens that may be found world wide. Within them, and in other locations close to the city, may be found a series of memorials to ex service men, and women, or to individuals who have served Australia as explorers, a navigator, sporting identities, or citizens in both peace or in war. Read the article.

The Mining of HM Ships Neptune and Kandahar. 19th./20th. December. 1941

The Mining of HM Ships Neptune and Kandahar. 19th./20th. December. 1941 - click to read moreOn the 18th. of December 1941, Force K sailed out of Malta to intercept an enemy convoy making for Tripoli. Neptune, Aurora, and Penelope steaming in line ahead with Kandahar, Lance, Lively and Havock in support, were on a southerly course on a dark, stormy night, when at 0106 ( 1. 06 AM ) early on the 19th. of December, Neptune ran slap bang into a mine. Read the article.

The British Convoy System in Two World Wars, and winning the Battle of the Atlantic

The British Convoy System in Two World Wars, and winning the Battle of the Atlantic - click to read moreHitler on 9 October, 1939, made this comment, "Used ruthlessly, the Submarine, can today, be an extraordinary threat to Britain."

Churchill said, " Battles might be won or lost, enterprises succeed or miscarry, Territories might be gained or quitted, but, dominating all our power to carry on the war, or even keep ourselves alive, was our mastery of the ocean routes, and free approach and entry to our ports. The only thing that ever frightened me during the war was the U-Boat peril."

 Read the article.

Allied Armed Merchant Cruisers of WW2

The British White Ensign worn by all of the 57 Allied Armed Merchant Cruisers of WW2 - click to read more
 As in WW1, the Royal Navy again in WW2, to augment its Naval ships made use of selected Merchant ships by converting them to Armed Merchant Cruisers. These vessels ranged from 6,000 to 22,000 tons, and were fitted out, usually with old WW1 type 6 inch guns, complemented with a meagre and totally inadequate Anti-aircraft armament. Given the title of His Majesty's Ship, and a White Ensign to fly these ships were in general, used for convoy escort work, and proved to be no match for any encounter with modern German capital ships. Read the article.

" I really did not see the signal! " Lord Horatio Nelson at Copenhagen. 2nd. of April, 1801

Lord Horatio Nelson at Copenhagen. 2nd. of April, 1801 - click to rea moreOnce more, we find Lord Nelson blatantly going against his superior's orders, just as we have noted at the Battle of St.Vincent, here he goes again, trusting his own judgement, having faith in his Captain's and their crews ability, that he will prevail and find victory, and therefore be forgiven for any transgression. Read the article.

I write a chapter in a new book At War In The Pacific

At War in the Pacific by Bruce M. Petty - click to learn more Read the article.

Battle of Cape St. Vincent. 14th. of February 1793

Admiral, Sir John Jervis - click to read moreOn the 11th. of February, Nelson in his ship Minerve passed through the Spanish ships, their sleepy lookouts unaware of the British ship. By the 13th. of February Nelson had found his Admiral to report that the enemy Spanish ships were in fact, close by. Read the article.

Russia versus Japan. The Battle of Tsushuma Straits, 1905

Russia versus Japan. The Battle of Tusushima Straits, 1905 - click to read moreThe Torpedo Boats approached with stealth to find the cruiser Pallada very conveniently illuminating the scene with her searchlights. The Russian ships were silhouetted nicely, like sitting ducks awaiting their fate. In two groups of five, the Japanese Boats unleashed their deadly torpedoes, to then escape seawards. Read the article.

HMAS Shropshire takes her final Voyage

Sropshire takes her final voyage - click to read moreSwarms of the wrecking gang soon removed all the valuable material within the ship's hull, her remains towed down stream to Troon, and after beaching there, the blow torches nibbled away to turn the remains into smelter furnace feedstock so that new steel might emanate from this old carcass. Read the article.

HMAS Quiberon night action in the Mediterranean 1st. and 2nd. of December 1942.

HMAS Quiberon's crest - click to read moreUnder the command of Rear Admiral C.H.J. Harcourt CBE RN. three cruisers, Aurora, Sirius, Argonaut with escorting destroyers Quiberon and Quentin engaged an Italian convoy on the night of the 1st/2nd of December 1942, sinking four convoy ships, and two enemy destroyers. Read the article.

AHOY Spreads its Wings

Iceland map - click to learn moreAs time rushes by I am suprised that people located in many countries across this world of ours have made contact with our AHOY Mac's Web Log. Read the article.

And So To Tokyo

A lecture at the Shrine of Remembrance Melbourne by Lieutenant Commander Mackenzie Gregory RAN R'td. on Tuesday the 22nd. of November 2005. Read the article.

Treasure Trove uncovered at the Mission to Seafarers

HMS Victory Medalets = click to read moreThe old jam jar found by our volunteer contained some of the Victory 1905 Medalets! Who knows how and why they made their way to Australia? and why they were relegated to an old jam jar, in turn stashed away in an old box. Read the article.

Murray Waldren's column, "That's Language," researches the origin of "Kit and Kaboodle" for me

Kit and KaboodleIn the National Newspaper The Australian, each weekend is a section called Review, their columnist Murray Waldren, on occasion runs a segment called That's Language. Back in last July, I sent Murray an E-Mail asking if he could throw any light on the expression Kit and Kaboodle. Read the article.

My brief speech at the opening of the NHSA Exhibition of the RAN's involvement in WW 11. Shrine of Remembrance at 2 PM. on the 28th. of October 2005

Here is the text of my brief speech at the opening of our Naval Historical Society Exhibition at the Shrine of Remembrance to mark the 60th. Anniversary of the end of WW11, and the part played by the Royal Australian Navy in both the European and Pacific theatres. Read the article.

List of Royal Navy Submarines sunk during WW11 indicating where sunk, how they were sunk, and the date of loss.(Includes Midget Submarines)

 Read the article.

Useful Maritime URL's for Research.

 Read the article.

The new British Magazine WW11, A Brief Review

British Magazine WW 11, from Great Northern Publishing click to learn moreIf you have been watching your mailbox for the first issue of the new British Magazine WW 11, from Great Northern Publishing, the gestation period is over, IT HAS BEEN BORN.

You will not be disappointed, the cover carries the famous photograph of British Prime Minister, Neville Chamberlain, on his return from being fooled by Hitler, and brandishing his piece of paper to declare " Peace In Our Time."

 Read the article.

The Birthday of Captain Arthur Phillip Royal Navy. 11th. of October 2005

HMS Sirius - click to read moreThe text of a presentation I made last night to the Australia Day Council members in Melbourne.

"It was on the 13th. of May in 1787 that Captain Arthur Phillip in Sirius, in the company of the tiny 170 ton King's ship Supply, the transports, Alexander, Lady Penrhyn, Charlotte, Scarborough, Friendship and Prince of Wales, the Store ships Fishburn, Golden Fleece and Borrowdale, led the First Fleet from Portsmouth out to sea, they were on their way at last into the unknown to Botany Bay 12,000 miles distant."

 Read the article.

Gravestone of the “Sea Devil” Count Felix Luckner

The gravestone on the grave of the “sea devil” Count Felix Luckner is found only a few paces away from the bust on the grave of the actor Harry Gorki. His ship, the “S.M. Hilfskreuzer Seeadler” (or “S.M. secondary/assistant cruiser Sea Eagle”) is depicted in the upper part of the gravestone. Unfortunately, due to the moss that has grown on the stone tablet, the ship is very difficult to see and the gravestone is rather unnoticeable (March 2003). Much has been written about the well-known sea hero of the first world war. Read the article.

Navy Week Exhibition.2005. Shrine of Remembrance. Melbourne.

Naval Historical Society of Australia - click to read moreIn this 60th Anniversary year of victory in Europe and victory in the Pacific, the Naval Historical Society of Australia - Victoria Chapter, is proud to conduct an exhibition of photographic reproductions of paintings and black and white images from various sources, to be held in the Visitors Centre at The Shrine of Remembrance. We thank Veterans Affairs in Canada, The United States Navy - Historical Section, and the Australian War Memorial for making these available. Read the article.

Presentation of Naval Historical Society of Australia Plaque on behalf of the Victorian Chapter to the USS Missouri Memorial Association

Plaque for the Victorian Chapter of the NHSA - click to read moreWe went on board, and on the Surrender Deck, close to the Brass Deck Plate marking the place of the surrender signing in 1945, I handed over the plaque for the Victorian Chapter of the NHSA. Lee had his photographer record the hand over, and has promised to mail a copy to me at home in Australia. Read the article.

Passport to the World over 64 years. Pages from my Travel Diary Visit to Honolulu to attend the 60th. Anniversary of the signing of the Japanese Surrender on the 2nd of September 2005.

Click to read moreWork in progress

As a 23 year old Lieutenant in the Royal Austalian Navy, Sunday, the 2nd. of September in 1945 found me serving in the cruiser HMAS Shropshire, as part of a US Navy Task Force in Tokyo Bay. I was thus present in that area when General Douglas Mac Arthur, orchestrated the Japanese Surrender on board the flagship of the US Third Fleet, USS Missouri that morning. My wife Denise, and I, were invited by that Memorial Association to be on board the Mighty Mo for the historic 60th. Anniversary of that memorable day in 1945 when WW2 finally officially came to an end.

 Read the article.

Pictures from the 60th. Anniversary of the signing of the Japanese Surrender on the Battleship Missouri

 Read the article.

Official Program: Anniversary of the signing of the Japanese Surrender on the 2nd of September 2005

Click to view the official programThis is the official program. Read the article.

The Honolulu Advertiser covers the Anniversary of the signing of the Japanese Surrender on the 2nd of September 2005

The Honolulu Advertiser - click to read moreCoverage of the event in the The Honolulu Advertiser. Read the article.

I make the news today

Click to read more Read the article.

Fifty Australians. An exhibition at the Australian War Memorial

Fifty Australians. An exhibition at the Australian War Memorial - click to read moreIt all began, when I had an E-Mail from Amanda Rebbeck, Curatorial Assistant Photographs, at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra. It indicated that an exhibition covering 50 Australians who had both seen war in WW2 and its effects, was to be mounted at the AWM, and was to be launched on the 18th. of August 2005. Read the article.

The U-Boats pens in the Bay Of Biscay ports. Built after France collapses in June of 1940

La Rochelle U-Boat pens - click to read moreVice Admiral Karl Donitz, in command of the U-Boat fleet, soon grabbed this opportunity to build almost impregnable bases in five French, Bay of Biscay ports, from North to South these were, Brest, Lorient, St Nazaire, La Rochelle, and Bordeaux. These bases would allow the U-Boats to spend an extra 10 days on patrol. Read the article.

Russian Sailors Rescued from Trapped AS-28 Mini Submarine

Russian Sailors Rescued from Trapped AS-28 Mini Submarine - click to read moreGreat news! the seven man crew from the trapped Russian Mini-Submarine have all been rescued. A British Remote Control Vehicle cut away the under water cable snagging the submarine to release it, and allow it to surface. The crew were able to open the deck hatch to all emerge safely. They have now been taken to the mainland and went off to hospital for medical check ups after their ordeal. Read the article.

An Australian magazine Broadsword, in Queensland, has just published my Japanese Submarine I-401 Found!

Broadsword Magazine - click to read the article Read the article.

The World of the Container Ship

Container ships - click to read moreThe advent of the container ship, and the fact that they will get even larger, has sounded the death knell for the cargo vessel that tramped round the world. The bulk of goods carried between continents will be shipped in the standard 20 foot container, that will protect the contents largely from pilferage, which was rife at ports in the past, and delivery will be faster and cheaper than under the old method. Coastal trade around specific countries will still rely on the smaller cargo ship to fulfil local shipping needs. Read the article.

The Mighty Mo. USS Missouri. ( BB 63 ) A Brief History

The mighty 16 inch guns of USS Missouri - click to read moreOn Friday the 2nd. of September 2005, the USS Missouri Memorial Association will host an historic event, the celebration of the 60th. Anniversary of signing the Japanese Surrender on the deck of USS Missouri in Tokyo Bay with General Douglas MacArthur orchestrating the ceremony. My wife Denise, and myself have been delighted to receive an invitation from the USS Missouri Memorial Association to attend that day. As I was present in Tokyo Bay back in September 1945, the ring will finally have gone full circle to be closed on that morning. Read the article.

Two Aussies, Keith and Shirley, visit Paris For VE Day on the 8th of May, 2005.

VE Day, 2005 click to read moreThe most impressive part here was the precision with which the Escort took up station and moved off. It was extremely well planned and executed. Even now Shirley and I are quite overwhelmed at the way the events on this most memorable day unfolded. That two spectators from Australia could have been offered so much is a great compliment to our Country. Read the article.

"Cammell Laird: Shipbuilders to the World" at Birkenhead, England by Alex Naughton

Cammell Laird built its first vessel at Birkenhead as long ago as 1828. The company has not built a new vessel at Birkenhead since 1993 and recently plans have been put forward for the redevelopment of the Cammell Laird shipyard site. Ship repair and conversion work continues to expand at Birkenhead under the A&P Group but given the general state of the British shipbuilding industry it seems unlikely that shipbuilding will ever return to the legendary Cammell Laird shipyard at Birkenhead. It seems that this chapter in the yard’s history has now closed forever.

Content © Alex Naughton (2003-2005) who publishes "RMS Windsor Castle, 1960 - 2005" Used with permission.

 Read the article.

Index to Naval Battles on AHOY

Index to Naval Battles on Ahoy - click to read moreOur Web Site AHOY carries a slew of articles recording many of these Naval Sea Battles, and it has been decided to provide a chronological index of these pieces to assist any of our readers interested in viewing any of these stories. Read the article.

The Battle for Okinawa. Invaded 1st. of April 1945

The mighty 72,000 ton Japanese Battleship Yamato
 blows up on the 7th. of April 1945 - click to read moreHere, Japanese Kamikaze Aircraft held command, they killed almost 5,000 Navy personnel, the greatest number to die in a single Pacific Battle. 34 Allied ships sunk, another 368 damaged, in the main, at the hands of the deadly Kamikaze. It was the last, and bloodiest battle of the whole war in the Pacific.

 Read the article.

Bloody Iwo Jima. A 36 day Battle for supremacy in February 1945

Iwo Jima Stamp - click to read moreAt 0200 ( 2 ) on the 19th. of February 1945, the Naval bombardment commenced, this was the traditional start to any sea ward landing made on a Japanese held position in the Pacific war. The United States Navy, sometimes with several cruisers from the Royal Australian Navy, stood off the beaches, soon to be swarming with landing craft filled with Marines, and pounded the area with high explosive shells from the battleships, heavy and light cruisers, devasting all in the path of this rolling smoke and thunder barrage. Read the article.

Australia's Merchant Marine in Peace and War

Australia's Merchant Marine in Peace and War - click to learn moreSome 60 different Shipping Companies have owned and operated Australian ships over the long period from the 1880's to the 1950's. Some were but small companies and maybe operated just one vessel for their own purposes, but in the main, ships carried both passengers and cargo from port to port on the Australian coast. Sadly today, the Australian Merchant Fleet has but something like 45 ships operating on our vast coastline. Read the article.

Wreck from 1929, TSS Kanowna, discovered in Bass Strait

Wreck from 1929 discovered in Bass Strait - CLICK TO READ MOREIt is fitting that a ship used 90 years ago to lift wounded Anzacs from the beach at Gallipoli is found over Anzac Day week end in 2005, when that landing is celebrated on the 25th. of April each year around Australia. Read the article.

Seven Clemson Class Destroyers all wrecked at Honda Point on the 8th. of September 1923

Disaster at Honda Point, 1923 - click to read moreIn the worst peacetime disaster in the history of the United States Navy, on the evening of the 8th. of September 1923, 14 Destroyers from Squadron Eleven, led by Captain Edward Watson USN, were making for San Diego from San Fransisco. At 2100, believing they were steaming east into Santa Barbara Channel, the flagship led his Squadron at 20 knots slap bang into the rocks and shoreline at Honda Point. Seven of his ships were wrecked, and 23 sailors died. Read the article.

Captain Mervyn Wingfield, Ex British Submariner dies on the 15th. of March 2005, aged 94.

HM Submarine Sturgeon, one of the submarines commanded by Captain Wingfield - click to read moreOn July 19 1941 Wingfield was on the bridge of the newly-built submarine  Umpire being escorted north as part of convoy EC4 when he signalled his intentions to an escorting destroyer: "If attacked at night I intend to
remain surfaced." He received back the sarcastic message: "So do I." Read the article.

Any old Iron? Canada wants to get rid of old Oberon Class Submarines.

The Canadian Navy has some very old Oberon Class Submarines, not much more than Old Iron, at this stage of their life, that they would like to dispose of. But you should give up any ideas of being Captain of your own O Class Boat standing watch on  her conning tower at sea.  They appear to be beyond recovery to allow them to sail once more in the proud way they served in the Canadian Navy over 40 years ago. Read the article.

Interview about the WW1 German Armed Merchant Raider, Moewe

I had an interesting E-Mail from Belfast, Northern Ireland yesterday asking if I would take a phone call from there at 1200 GMT Tuesday, the 24th. of May 2005, ie at 9 PM Australian time, as they are on summer time there, and now 9 hours behind Melbourne, and record an interview about the WW1 German Armed Merchant  Raider, Moewe, I agreed, and it took place this evening. Read the article.

Ships of the Royal Australian Navy during WW2

HMS Canberra - Ships of the RAN in WW2 - click to learn moreThe accompanying diagram depicts the Ships of the RAN in WW2, for a meagre populated country at that time it was a remarkable achievement, over 200 vessels in all, which included 56 Bathurst Class Corvettes / Minesweepers all built around Australia and named after the country towns found in each State of the Commonwealth. I am indebted to John Date for this drawing. Read the article.

England may expect, but Political Correctness will fail to deliver on the 200th. Anniversary of Nelson's famous Victory at Trafalgar

The 21st of October 2005 will mark the 200th. anniversary of Lord Nelson's stunning victory at Trafalgar. But political correctness has scuttled true history when the renactment of this fight at sea is staged in England. Instead of naming the opposing fleets as British versus the French/Spanish, so that our former enemies, now allies, through the passage of time are not offended, they will be given the neutral names of the Red Fleet versus the Blue Fleet. Read the article.

WW1 Hospital ship Gloucster Castle torpedoed, salvaged to serve in WW2, but be sunk by German Armed Merchant Raider Michel

Gloucester Castle torpedoed 30th. March 1915 - click to read moreAlthough well identified as a Hospital ship with her large Red crosses painted on her hull, she was torpedoed on the 30th. of March in 1915 on a trip from Le Havre to Southhampton, luck was with her, and from her 399 passengers on board, only 3 died. She did not sink and was taken in tow, the journey home for repairs taking 2 weeks, and by 1919 she was back in service in a civilian capacity, plying the route to Africa. Read the article.

Wreck of HMHS Rewa, identified by Divers in 2004

HMHS Rewa torpedoed by German Submarine U-55, off the Northern coast of Cornwall on the 4th. of January 1918. Click to read moreThe wreck of Rewa was discovered by divers in September of 2003, lying upright in about 60 metres of water some 33 miles from Newquay off the Northern coast of Cornwall. She had been torpedoed by Wilhelm Werner in his U-55 on the 4th. of January 1918, the ship loaded with cot cases and walking wounded from Greece, and at the fag end of her voyage via Malta bound for Cardiff. Read the article.

Australian Army Slouch Hat

Australian Army Slouch Hat - click to read moreThe slouch hat made its first appearance overseas on the heads of troops fighting in the Boer War, and it added much to the mystique of the Australian bushmen. Around the time the first Commonwealth troops arrived in South Africa, the hat began to be more commonly worn with the left side turned up, so that a rifle or one fitted with a bayonet would not interfere with the head gear. Read the article.

Our Language

Many and varied can be the meanings of our everyday use of some words. So, will our readers please share with Terry and myself some of the contranyms that are your favourites? and we will publish a list on AHOY. Read the article.

The use of Propaganda Posters in WW2

WW2 Propaganda Posters - Click to see moreIn World War 2 propaganda took many forms, but one that was employed by all the nations at war was that of the Propaganda Poster. A review of some of these posters is quite revealing, and  Northwestern University in the United States has gathered a large collection in their library archives, all of which are in the public domain. Here I have selected a group of them which give a good feel of what is available, in addition, a few posters from Britain, Germany, Russia, Japan and Italy have also been added to show their style and flavour. Read the article.

Auxiliary Hospital Ship Anglia, mined off Folkestone on the 17th. of November 1915. 127, or 164 Dead

HMS Hazard, who rescued survivors of the British Hospital Ship Anglia - click to read moreHMHS Anglia was yet one more hospital ship in WW1 that was despatched by either an enemy mine or torpedo. Most of these disasters were accompanied by a large loss of life, any service personnel, especially if wounded would have thought, at last I am safe, I am aboard a Hospital ship bearing the immunity of large Red Crosses painted on the ship's side, but it proved not to be. Read the article.

8th. of May 2005, 60 years on since VE Day in Europe

Trafalgar Square London VE Day 1945 - click to read moreToday, Sunday the 8th. of May 2005 is the 60th. anniversary of VE Day in Europe which signalled the end of WW2 in that part of the world. It seems hard to believe we have reached that milestone, it has all gone so quickly, but in Australia, at that time, although we were pleased one phase of the war was over, for us, we still had the job in front of us to finally defeat the Japanese war machine in the Pacific. Read the article.

The U-Boats versus The Convoys. Battle of the Atlantic. September 1939 - May 1945. Index to Ahoy Articles

Battle of the Atlantic - click to learn more"When you think how easy it is to sink ships at sea, and how hard it is to build them, and when you realise that we never had less than 2000 ships afloat, and 300 to 400 in the danger zone, and of the great Armies we are nuturing,and reinforcing in the East, and of the world wide traffic we have to carry on, when you think of all this, can you wonder that it is the Battle of the Atlantic which holds the first place in the thoughts of those upon whom the responsibility for final Victory rests. - Winston Churchill

These articles make up a good cross section of the struggles of those days.

 Read the article.

German Radio called it "Greatest Convoy Battle of all Time." 40 U-Boats carve up Convoys SC122 and HX229. 16-19 March 1943.

B-24 Very Long Range Aircraft used to cover Convoys SC122 and HZ229 - click to read moreThe whole scenario was only saved from being a total disaster by the fact that surface reinforcements came in from Iceland, but more importantly, the air umbrella flown by VLR B-24's, B-17's and Sunderlands found many of the attacking U-Boats and forced them to keep their heads down, and a real plus for the aircraft, U-384 was sunk. In all, 54 sorties were flown over the two convoys, the aircraft reporting sighting 32 boats, and attacking them 21 times, a busy time for all the airmen involved. Read the article.

Trying to stem the southward thrust of the Japanese threatening to engulf the Dutch East Indies in February/March of 1942. The Battle of Sunda Strait

The Battle of Sunda Strait - click to learn moreIn February 1942 the Japanese were still marching South, ready to invade the Dutch East Indies striking against Java. The American British Dutch Australian ( ABDA ) Naval force was all that stood in its path. Two sea battles, Java Sea, and Sunda Strait decided the fate of the Dutch East Indies, changing that territory for all time. Read the article.

Women Pioneers of Australian Aviation

Women Pioneers of Australian Aviation - click to read moreDuring the early years of the 20th. Century, and into the thirties, a handful of intrepid women defied the convention of being Mothers and Homemakers, by thumbing their noses at the norm as they took to the skies. They blazed new trails to and from England and Australia, and within the land Down Under. We review some of their achievements as they broke records in the field of Aviation. Read the article.

We Remember. Bob Quinn, a Scottish friend, a contributor to AHOY, who died suddenly on the 24th. of February 2005

Bob Quinn, 1945 - click to read moreAt my first contact with Bob, he was 80, legally blind, but had recently discovered the computer, and was willing to share his time in Australia etc with the Welfreigher Project. Over the ensuing period we quickly developed a close relationship, our mutual wartime Naval Service providing a strong bond, we talked via E-Mails almost daily. I felt I had known this strong character for a long long time, and he became a dear friend. Read the article.

Japanese Submarine I-401 found off Hawaii

The huge hangar door open on the deck of an I-400 class Japanese Submarine - click to learn moreDuring WW2, Japan laid down the I-400 class of Submarine, they were huge boats, 400 feet long, of 3,530 tons, on deck a large 115 foot long by 12 feet in diameter hangar, designed to carry three aircraft with folding wings and tail. On Sunday the 20th. of March 2005 details of a research team from the University of Hawaii finding the wreck of WW2 Japanese Submarine I-401 were released. On St Patrick's day, the 17th. of March, during test dives off Oahu, a wreck was found. Read the article.

Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc. Proceeding with HMS Sussex Project

In 1694, the 80 gun Royal Navy warship HMS Sussex sank in the Western Mediterranean after a violent storm. At that time she was believed to carry in her cargo a vast sum of money, reported to to be used to pursuade the Duke of Savoy, then a British Ally in their war against France and King Louis XIV. Read the article.

Loss of HMT Lancastria at St Nazaire on the 17th. of June 1940. One of Britain's worst Maritime Disasters

Loss of HMT Lancastria at St Nazaire - click to read moreSurvivors were picked up by all manner of craft, and in due course, newspapers put the total recovered at  2,823.Numbers lost. The total number lost from this troopship will most likely never be known, as no final and accurate count of those who did board the ship was taken, and it might run as high as 4,000 to 5,000 lost. Read the article.

Fore Top sail from HMS Victory to be on display

A 3,618 square foot top sail that served HMS Victory at the battle of Trafalgar will be on display - click to read moreA 3,618 square foot top sail that served HMS Victory at the battle of Trafalgar will be on display at the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard to mark the 200th. anniversary of this historic battle. It was stitched together in the Chatam sail loft in 1803, staying on board Victory after Trafalgar, until Nelson's flagship came home for repairs in 1806. Read the article.

Death at Sea in World War 2.

Death at Sea in World War 2 - Click to learn moreBlame could hardly be laid at the door of Allied Submarine Captains, who were not to know the cargo carried in these ships. It was rather that the Japanese authorities were culpable in not marking their ships with the safety of a Red Cross to indicate that POW's were on board. Read the article.

New Discussion Forum for AHOY

At the top of each page is a link to this new feature, and you are invited to "Come on over."

Just set a topic for discussion about some aspect of Naval or Maritime History, add it to our Discussion Forum page, sit back and see what comes our way. You may be the first to set the ball rolling, take up the challenge. Terry and I await with interest to see what type of subject gets people going and wound up, so GO To IT, please!

Mac Gregory, and Web Master, Terry Kearns

 Read the article.

British Hospital Ships, Torpedoed or Mined in WW1

British Hospital Ships, Torpedoed or Mined in WW1 - click to learn more

Over WW1, a number of British Hospital ships were sunk either by means of torpedoes or mines. In the period of 1917/1918, when unrestricted warfare was waged on Allied shipping by the German U-Boat arm, it appeared to be a specific policy to target British Hospital ships for destruction.


 Read the article.

Over the Years, Naval and Merchant Ships Explode. Some of these accidents are visited.

Ships Explode - click to read moreFrom time to time, ships for one reason or another explode. They may be war or merchant ships that are ammunition carriers, in the early 1900's at least four Battleships and one Battle Cruiser all blew up. Here, I list some of the casualties through explosion. Read the article.

Tid-bits from the book, Cruise of the Sea Eagle, by Blaine Pardoe

Cruise of the Sea Eagle, by Blaine Pardoe - click to learn moreA few things have been brought to the surface as a result of access to archival resources around the world, adding to what we know about Count von Luckner and the Seeadler. Thanks to declassified US Navy material in the US National Archives, the resources of the New Zealand National Archives, the National Archives of the United Kingdom, the Bundersarchiv/Militararchiv and Deutsches Schiffahrtsmuseum in Germany, and the Mariner’s Museum in Newport News VA; and a wide range of other sources – we’re finally getting a real and more accurate picture of the events concerning the Seeadler and her epic cruise. Read the article.

Two successful U-Boat Commanders of WW1, Kapittanleutnants Otto Hersing and Lothar von Arnauld de la Periera

Kptlt.Lothar von Arnauld de la Periera. U-Boat Commander in WW1 - click to read moreIn WW1, the submarine as a lethal weapon of war was in its infancy, however, two German Naval Officers, Kappitanleutnants, Otto Hersing, and Lothar von Arnauld de la Periera in command of SM U-21 and SM U-35 respectively, soon seized the initiative to make their presence felt, so much so, that the British placed a 100,000 Pound bounty upon Otto's head. Read the article.

Wars continue to take their toll through Friendly Fire

Corporal Ainsworth Dyer, one of the 4 Canadians who died in Afganistan from Friendly FireEver since man began to engage in warfare, the phenomenon bizarrely named "Friendly Fire." has become an adjunct to the practice. Accidents do, and no doubt will continue to take place at any battle scene, and service people die as a result. Are we becoming any better at managing this unfortunate manifestation as time moves on? I seek to compare more recent experience with some earlier wars. Read the article.

A Deck of Cards

This small piece titled :" A Deck of Cards," is reproduced here as a matter of interest, but I am unsure of its origin. If any of our readers can place its author and origin please write to AHOY. Read the article.

USS Reagan honors the USS Arizona Memorial

USS Reagan passes the USS Arizona Memorial - click to learn moreUSS Reagan passes the USS Arizona Memorial.



 Read the article.

Nuclear Submarine, USS San Fransisco, runs into Seamount on Saturday the 8th. of January 2005.

USS San Francisco - click to read moreOne can ask, should Commander Mooney in command of a nuclear Submarine be charging around here at 35 knots? The end result was one crew member dead and 24 injured. The other side of the coin, is that the Pacific is a huge ocean, and you might drive a Submarine forever at high speed with total immunity. Read the article.

Ill fated Empress of Ireland, collides with Norwegian Collier Storstad on the 29th. of May, 1914. Over 1,000 perish

Empress of Ireland - click to learn moreWater rushed into the starboard side, and Empress of Ireland quickly took on a list to starboard, open port holes which should have been closed at sea, allowed the ingress of even more water. The damage precluded the closing of water tight doors, compounding the problems the ship faced. Within 10 minutes the liner lay on her side. Read the article.

French Submarine Surcouf, the World's largest Submarine before WW2. Her mysterious disappearance in February of 1942.

French Submarine Surcouf - click to learn moreWhen the German Army flooded into France in 1940, Surcouf was in Brest, refitting, she quickly escaped across the Channel to England, on only one available motor. Not all French Naval vessels surrendered to the British, and Surcouf had to be forcibly taken over by the Royal Navy, in the shirmish, two British Officers and a French sailor died. A British Dockyard refitted her, and she was handed over to the Free French Navy in Britain in August 1940. Read the article.

I climb Croagh Patrick in Ireland on Wednesday the 23rd of June 1993 - Passport to the World over 64 years. Pages from my Travel Diary

Climbing Croagh Patrick - click to read moreCroagh Patrick, the sacred mountain of Ireland is close to the town of Westport in County Mayo, Ireland. Go to the village of Murrisk, about 8 kilometres from Westport, if in a car, be careful you do not drive straight past the small car park nestling at the entrance to the track up to the climbing area. Look for the Croagh Patrick Pub. Read the article.

German U-Boat U-853 sinks US collier Black Point in contravention of Grand Admiral Karl Donitz' orders.

U-853 - click to read the articleU-853 claimed the last victim of the Battle of the Atlantic, but we will never know if her Captain ignored the order by the "Last Fuhrer." or if in fact, he was dived in his boat at that time, and just did not receive this order.


 Read the article.

German WW1 Light Cruiser SMS Emden versus HMAS Sydney

John Glossop Captain of HMAS Sydney who defeated SMS Emden - click to read moreThe Australian light cruiser, was actually the first cruiser to be built for the fledgling Royal Australian Navy, she commissioned in June 1913. Displacing 5,400 tons, her armament, 8 by 6 inch guns ( 1 forward, 1 aft, and 3 each port and starboard sides, thus giving a 5 gun broadside ) she also carried torpedo tubes. A touch faster than Emden at 25.5 knots, her crew 390, opposed to that of the German ship of 325 men. Read the article.

In WW1, German U-Boat U9, destroys three elderly British Light Cruisers, Aboukir, Hogue, and Cressy in under 75 minutes

U9 - click to read moreIn the early days of WW1, Cruiser Force C, made up of old Cressy class armoured cruisers patrolled part of the North Sea close to the Hook of Holland. Senior Naval Officers were opposed to this patrol on the grounds that these ships were very vulnerable to any attack from Germany's more modern surface ships, and advised the Admiralty accordingly. This patrol was nicknamed: "The live bait patrol." Nonetheless, my Lords of the Admiralty ignored this advice, and persisted with this operation ... Read the article.

A Brief History of the Ship's Figurehead

A Seahorse Figurehead - click to learn moreAlthough a modern definition uses terms such as: "A carving, usually a bust or full length figure at a ship's prow." ( The Illustrated Oxford Dictionary ) or: "A sculptured image decorating the stemhead of a ship." ( Encyclopedia Americana ) This type of artform dates back much much further in time. Read the article.

Archer Class Auxiliary Carrier, HMS Dasher Destroyed by Explosion on the 27nd. of March 1943. 379 Dead

The ship's badge for HMS Dasher - click to learn moreSuddenly at 1640 ( 4.40 PM ) a horrendous explosion took place, and the after aircraft lift, about two tons in weight, with a mighty roar lifted high in the air to about 60 feet above the flight deck.



 Read the article.

The Voltaire Pages

VoltairIn some cases AHOY acts as a Post Office, trying to bring two interested parties together, so they may exchange information pertaining to some one who served in Voltaire. Given the level of interest raised in the ship, her action with Thor, demise, and the surviving crew members captivity in German POW camps, we have decided to consolidate all the Voltaire messages into a major subject on our AHOY Mac's Web Pages site called: THE VOLTAIRE PAGESRead the article.

US Navy Armed Guard Service in WW2.

US Navy Armed Guard Service - click to read the articleToday, Wednesday the 17th. of November 2004 ( Australian Time ) I received an interesting E-Mail from: Fran Kent of North Hollywood, California. He indicated that he seen for the first time my web site: Ahoy. Mac's Web Log, it contains a great deal of Naval History, including WW2, but not a word about The US Navy Armed Guard Service. Fran is right, I was aware of the sterling service rendered by this group, but had not researched or written about them at all. This then, is my attempt to redress this omission. Read the article.

Liberty Ship William Dawes. Sunk by I-11 on the 22nd. of July 1942. Wreck found in November 2004

Liberty ship - click to read the articleLiberty Ship William Dawes, hull number 180, was laid down on the 26th. of October 1941, launched on the 9th. of February 1942, to be completed on the 7th. of May of that year, had but a short life in service. She was one of 2,751 ships of this class built in the United States over WW2, and also one of 200 torpedoed, falling victim to the Japanese submarine I-11 on the 22nd. of July 1942, off the coast of New South Wales, Australia. Read the article.

The Tragedy of the British Submarine with two illfated names, Thetis and Thunderbolt

Emblem of Thetis, click to read the articleCammel Laird had built the 1,290 ton HM Submarine Thetis ( her motto" I bide my time." ) launching her on the 29th. of June 1938. The initial trials were delayed because the forward hydroplanes had jammed, but on the 1st. of June 1939, under the command of Lieutenant Commander G. H. Bolus. R.N. trials were finally due to commence. But the submarine was too light to dive, and a survey of water within her various compartments was made, one check was to ascertain if the internal torpedo tubes were flooded. Read the article.

Matthew Flinders Web Site at the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London

Matthew Flinders - click to read the articleA newly established web site at the National Maritime Museum allows one to explore this wonderful collection. On long term loan to the Museum from Lisette Flinders Petrie are:- " The Flinders Papers ( 1774-1814 )" covering 150 documents which include personal letters, many to his wife Ann, letters to and from Sir Joseph Banks, maps, charts etc. Read the article.

Light Cruiser SMS Konigsberg:A World War 1, German East African Raider

German Light Cruiser Konigsberg in WW1 - Click to read the articleBy April 1915, the Germans were desperate to break out Konigsberg, a supply ship Ruebens carrying 1,600 tons of coal for the cruiser, plus a host of ammunition and much needed supplies arrived in the Indian Ocean. The ship disguised as a Danish freighter was known to the British authorities, and when she arrived at Manza Bay, the British cruiser Hyacinth came up from the South at full speed, Rueben's Captain was so panic stricken, he ran his ship aground, evacuated his crew, and torched his ship. Read the article.

Coastal Command Sunderland, U from Squadron 461, Sinks German U-Boat, U-461 in the Bay of Biscay.

Sunderland attacking U-boats, cick to read the articleAt my stint at the Shrine yesterday, Thursday the 4th. of November I shared the shift with Keith Lindner who had served in HMAS Warramunga during WW2. Keith told me a relative had served in Coastal Command during WW2, and his Sunderland had sunk a German Submarine in the Bay of Biscay, the only details he knew was that this aircraft carried the same designation as did the U-Boat. eg U-761 versus U-Boat U-761Read the article.

Figurehead from  Wreck of Seeadler removed by Australian Sailors at Mopelia Island in 1917

Figurehead of Seeadler - click to read moreA Henry Cooper approached me about his Father who served in HMAS Encounter as an Ordinary Seaman in 1917. This ship searched the wreck of Count Felix Luckner's Seeadler at Mopelia Island in September of 1917.



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The Development of the Catapult Armed Merchantman ( CAM Ships. )

Click to read the articleIn a desperate attempt to close the gap in the Atlantic Ocean that could not be covered by Allied aircraft flying west from England, and east from Canada, the concept of the Auxiliary Fighter Catapult Ships under the White Ensign, and the Catapult Armed Merchantmen ( CAM ships ) sailing under the Red Duster was conceived and born. Read the article.

Diary of time spent as a POW on Kronprinz Wilhelm

Thanks to Mark, He has recovered and given us permission to publish his great grandfather, Samuel Robert Hitchin's "Diary of time spent as a POW on Kronprinz Wilhelm." His ship, Highland Brae was sunk by the German Armed Raider Kronprinz Wilhelm in 1915. Read the article.

A 21day visit to Europe and the Mediterranean, 23rd September/14th October 2004.

Here are my notes on my recent tripRead the article.

Golden Anchor Website Award for Patriotic Excellence from "The Deck Plate"

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British Tramp Anglo Saxon sunk by German Raider Widder. The story of an amazing open boat journey of 70 days

For the remaining 37 days they survived on rainwater, seaweed, and a few small sea creatures. They contemplated suicide, they fought, but managed to live through a three day hurricane, to finally land in the Bahamas on the far side of the Atlantic Ocean on the 30th. of October 1940. They had been battling the elements to survive an amazing sea voyage in a small open boat over 70 days. Read the article.

Stupidity reigns and then Admirals collide

Vice Admiral Sir George Tyron - click to read the articleA strong naval Commander in Chief of the British Mediterranean Fleet, in whom both his Rear Admiral as second in command, and ten Captains of Battleships had too much faith, or were too frightened to speak out, led two ships of the Fleet to a devastating collision, and a dreadful loss of life, including the C-in C himself. Read the article.

Former Aircraft Carrier HMAS Vengeance comes to a sad end in India

HMAS Vengeance - click to read the articleThe last surviving British built aircraft carrier Vengeance, and the Friends of Vengeance have lost the fight to purchase her, bring her back to England, and turn her into a floating museum. She is being broken up for scrap in an Indian Shipbreakers yard.
 Read the article.

The Top Ten Rivers of the World

The Amur River - click to read the articleThe only criterion for selection to this exclusive list is length in miles. The longest river gains first position, and so on in descending order:

The Nile, The Amazon, The Yangtze, The Mississippi, The Irtysh, The Amur, The Congo, The Huang-Ho or Yellow, The Lena, and The Mackenzie rivers

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Australian Stamps honour early Sailors, and Navigators, who put Australia on the Map

James Cook on 1888 stamp - click to read the articleWork in progress.

Over the years, Australia has designed and issued stamps that feature some of the early Sailors and Navigators who were instrumental in literally putting Australia on the map, or were involved in administration of the new found Colony at Sydney Cove. In this small piece, I remember 7 of these intrepid Sailors. They are presented in date order of their birth.

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Canadian TV show Disasters of the Century is researching the Queen Mary and HMS Curacoa collision

The Canadian TV show Disasters of the Century is looking for ancestors of/or survivors and witnesses of the Queen Mary and HMS Curacoa collision off the coast of Ireland on Oct. 2, 1942. Read the article.

A Short Philatelic History of The Yangtze Patrol by George Saqqal

USS Panay, one of the US ships on the Yangtze Patrol - click to read the article

Thanks to:

George Saqqal #9389
9728 Third Avenue, #556
Brooklyn, N.Y. 11209

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HMAS Sydney honored at Shrine of Remembrance

The story of HMAS Sydney 11 Exhibition, will be mounted by The Naval Historical Society of Australia ( Victorian Chapter ) and HMAS Sydney Association. It will be mounted in the new Undercroft of the Shrine, where up to 1,000 visitors a day visit this memorial for all Servicemen and Women from the State of Victoria who have served their Country, and died from such service. Read the article.

Battle of the Air Waves, WW2 Axis Radio Propaganda

Tokyo Rose - click to read the articleWork in progress

Three people were particularly involved, two women and one man, these were: Mildred Gillars, known as Axis Sally, Iva Toguri, aka Tokyo Rose, and William Joyce, who broadcast German propaganda over the radio, and was called Lord Haw Haw.

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The Auxiliary German Minelayer Doggerbank

Speybank prior to her conversion to
 Doggerbank - click to read the articleThis then was one of the unusual stories spawned by World War 2, the somewhat bizarre story of the Doggerbank, an ex British ship captured by the Germans, who sank an ex German Merchant ship captured by the Dutch, only to be despatched by one of their own Country's U-Boats.  Read the article.

Naval Aircraft in the Pacific in WW2

Chance-Vought F4U Corsair - click to read the articleWork in progress






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Operation Deadlight, the scuttling of German U-Boats that were captured by the Allies after WW2

Operation Deadlight - click to read the articleIn 2001, the submarine hunter Innes McCartney, led Phase 1 of the Operation Deadlight Expedition which was the first time that technical Divers had surveyed and identified the wrecks of these German U-Boats, that had been scuttled by the Allies in waters off Northern Ireland and Scotland. Some 54 Submarines lie in deep water that with today's diving equipment are very reachable. Read the article.

The Destroyer of USS Indianapolis, Japanese Submarine I-58 is found in April 2004.

A Professor of oceanography, William Bryant together with Brett Phaneuf, an oceanography graduate student, found I-58, last April, 50 miles off the coast of Nagasaki, where she rests some 675 feet below the sea's surface. Read the article.

Amended interview with Australians at War Film Archive

I've edited and corrected the orginal interview Read the article.

Original interview with Australians at War Film Archive

This is the transcript of my interview. I'm going to make corrections and make it as accurate as I can. Read the article.

Top Ten US Navy Submarine Captains in WW2 By Number of Confirmed Ships Sunk

Medal of Honor - click to read the articleThe US Navy and its Submarine arm, over WW2 in the Pacific, claimed to have sunk 4,000 Japanese ships to add up to a gross tonnage of 10 Million tons. Post war, the Joint Army-Navy Assessment Committee ( short title JANAC ) reassessed all these claims that had been credited to the individual Captains and their submarines, and amended them to read: 1,314 ships sunk, to add up to a gross tonnage of 5.3 Million tons, ie slicing the tonnage of ships sunk to almost half that originally credited.


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Picture Page for Top Ten US Navy Submarine Captains in WW2

work in progress Read the article.

The Top Ten German U-Boat Aces of World War 2

Knights Cross - click to read the articleOver WW2, Germany produced a number of outstanding U-Boat commanders, from amongst this elite list, I have used the tonnage of enemy shipping sunk, as my yardstick to select the top ten U-Boat Aces from this conflict. I list them in rank order according to their success in sinking Allied ships, and paint a brief pen picture of each of them. Read the article.

Pictures of Raider Wolf

Pictures of Raider Wolf - click to see the article(work in progress)

I have received some reproductions of a collection of 24 photos that were taken on the Voyage of the "Raider Wolf."

"They were given to me some years ago by my daughter's mother in in law. They were found many years ago in a sidewalk sale in San Francisco.

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Immense fire power of a United States Navy Battleship: USS Iowa

USS Iowa - click to read the articleIt's a spectacular picture.




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Destroyer Escort USS England, Japanese Submarine Killer Supreme

USS England, champion submarine killer - click to read the articleOver a 12 day period in the last two weeks of May in 1944, the Destroyer Escort USS England accounted for 6 Japanese Submarines. I-16, RO-106, RO-104, RO- 116, RO-108 and RO-105 were all sunk. This was a record number of kills, unsurpassed in WW2.

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Sunday the 6th. of June 2004. The 60th. Anniversary of the D Day landings

On this day some 60 years ago something like 156.000 men within that number were about 2,600 Australians, a few of whom have returned to the coast of Normandy to remember. Ten Australians  will also be honoured by the French Government with the award of the Legion of Honour at ceremonies both in France and in Australia. Read the article.

Operation Drumbeat, a German plan that sent five U-boat submarines to the East Coast of the United States to attack merchant ships during 1942

Kptlt Reinhard Hardgen, the most successful U-Boat commander in Operation Drumbeat - click to read the articleWith the German declaration of war against the US, all restrictions on German U-Boats attacking American shipping were removed. Admiral Donitz in charge of the U-Boat arm, was anxious to prepare a concentrated attack on United States shipping operating up and down the domestic American East Coast.


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How many enemy aircraft were shot down by U-Boats in WW2?

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Medal from Holland: Grandfather who was sunk by the Japanese in a Dutch cruiser in 1942

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The Headquarters of Western Approaches Command, from whence THE BATTLE OF THE ATLANTIC was fought.

It was below the streets of Liverpool, and amongst other things included the giant vertical plotting board. See "Western Approaches War Room and Ships." On it were shown all the convoys going both ways to and from USA to UK, and all the information from radio intercepts, and the reading of the German Navy codes, about the location and plans for the U-Boats at sea, anywhere in the world, but in the main, in the North Atlantic. Read the article.

Stuart Robottom interviewed me and another ex Navy type. Bob Appleton, whom I happen to know for his History Essay at the Royal Australian Naval College HMAS Creswell.

Stuart Robottom interviewed Bob Appleton and me for his History Essay at the Royal Australian Naval College HMAS Creswell. His entry won the prize for History in 2003, it was printed in the College Magazine. Read the article.

The Battle For Convoy ONS 5. 26th.April - 6th. May 1943

Atlantic Star award - click to read the article.Outward North Atlantic Slow Five, short name ONS 5, with a code name of MARFLEET, was made up of 43 merchant ships, in the main they could be classified as elderly, their destination Halifax in Nova Scotia, with a few ships destined for New York and Boston. This motley band of grey vessels with their names painted out had sailed from five ports, Milford Haven, Liverpool, the Clyde, Oban, and Londonderry. Read the article.

Model of HMAS Canberra from Russia available in Melbourne

About two weeks ago, the Centre telephoned me to say thay had obtained a scale model of my old ship HMAS Canberra, ( I had been sunk in her at the Battle of Savo Island on the 9th. of august in 1942. ) They knew that I had been looking for such a model for many years. Read the article.

Battle of the Java Sea, in which Exeter was sunk

The last throes of HMS Exeter - Click to read the articleThis is the report by the Captain of Exeter, covering the Battle of the Java Sea, in which Exeter was sunk, and Captain O.L.Gordon RN was taken a POW by the Japanese. He recorded the event some three weeks after the action, and hid his notes over his 3.5 years of captivity in a hollowed out shaving cream tube, and then based this despatch to the Admiralty on his long hidden notes after he was freed at the end of WW2. Read the article.

The Capture of U-505 by USS Guadalcanal. 4th. of June 1944

U-505 boarding party - click to read the articleCommissioned on the 26th. of August 1941, in all she made 12 patrols sinking 8 ships with a tonnage of 44,962 tons. On the 24th. of October 1943, whilst under a heavy depth charge attack, her Commanding Officer, Kptlt. Peter Zschech committed suicide, the only such case in WW2. The boat was saved and brought back safely to port. Read the article.

Salvage team in three-year plan to raise the Graf Spee

A salvage plan will be launched next week to raise from the estuary of the River Plate, the wreck of the German Battleship, Graf Spee. The salvage operation is a private venture with German funding and backing from the Uruguayan Government, and is expected to last more than three years. Read the article.

Embarkation Roll, First World War (AWM8)

The Australian War Memorial has just released this Embarkation Roll of 330,000 Australians who embarked from Australia for overseas service in WW1. Many people around the world may well be interested in it. Read the article.

The Mystery of HMAS Pirie's Ship's Bell

HMAS Pirie - click to read the articleHow did the bell of HMAS Pirie, finish up in an antique shop in Ankara, Turkey?


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Bibliography for Count Felix von Luckner

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The Battle of the River Plate. 13th. December 1939.

Graf Spee - click to read the articleGiven the current endeavour to raise the sunken German pocket battleship Admiral Graf Spee, it seems timely to record this historic battle for Ahoy readers.

The German pocket battleship Admiral Graf Spee was loose in the South Atlantic, and the British ship Doric Star on the afternoon of the 2nd. of December 1939, reported that she was under attack by a pocket battleship in position 19 degrees 15 minutes South, 5 degrees 5 minutes East, and the next day, an unknown ship made a similar report from a position 170 miles south west from the Doric Star incident.

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Interview with Willy Schruefer, sailor in Ramses, captured by HMAS Adelaide

Willi Schruefer on right - Click to read the articleIn 1942 whilst serving as a Sub Lieutenant RAN in the Australian Light Cruiser HMAS Adelaide protecting a convoy in company with the Dutch Cruiser Heemskerck, we came across a Merchant Ship which proved to be the German Blockade Runner Ramses. A combination of our shells and scuttling charges sank this ship. We picked up all her survivors. In 2003, I was contacted by an American freelance journalist working in Germany Ward Carr, who had interviewed in the Spring of 2002, Willy Schruefer, who was a sailor ex the Ramses. This means that back in November 1942, both Willy, now a Prisoner of War, and myself were both in HMAS Adelaide at the same time. Read the article.

Postscript to Marauders of the Sea. WW2, with an unusual twist.

SS Automedon sunk by Atlantis - click to read the articleIn my Marauders of the Sea. WW2, (See Atlantis  where this has been added as a postscript.) I covered briefly the activities of the German Armed Merchant Raiders in WW2. The Atlantis under Captain Rogge was one of these, and in her career sank some 22 ships, the most important being SS Automedon.

First Lieutenant Ulrich Mohr, leading the boarding party, in the Chart Room came across a long narrow envelope enclosed in a green bag fitted with brass eyelets to allow water to enter, and sink it, in the event of its necessary disposal.

This document was marked: "Highly Confidential .... To be Destroyed" its envelope marked to:"The Commander-in-Chief Far East.... To be Opened Personally."

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A fascinating model for sale on E-bay of HMAS Canberra

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El hundimiento del Submarino Republicano Español C3 , por el "U-Boat" Alemán U-34

U-Boat U-24 sank Spanish submarine C3 - click to read the article

De los 40 miembros de la tripulación, solamente hubo 3 supervivientes, los marineros Isidoro de la Orden Ibáñez y Asensio Lidon Jiménez, que se encontraban arrojando los restos de la comida al agua y cayeron por la borda. El Capitán de la Marina Mercante D. Agustín García Viñas, en funciones de Oficial de Navegación del Submarino, estaba en la vela conversando con el Comandante del C3 cuando el torpedo impactó.

A Spanish translation of "The Sinking of Spanish Republican Submarine, by German U-Boat U-34". Thanks to Peppo, the Web Master of the C3 site, he sent the Spanish Translation.

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US Navy Operation Hail Stone. The attack on Truk by a Carrier Task Force on the 17th. and 18th. of February 1944.

USS Iowa at Operation Hail Stone - click to read the articleTruk Lagoon with its wide stretch of water with only 5 entrances, made it an ideal place for a Naval Base, easy to defend, and in the early 1940's, Japan started to built fortifications near the 5 Lagoon entrances, plus air strips, so that Truk became  an important and major Japanese Naval Base in the central Pacific. It was to be used for their campaigns in New Guinea and in the Solomon Islands. Read the article.

Seeadler postcards and von Luckner's signature

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Count Felix von Luckner: Index of Ahoy's articles and correspondence

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Book review. Lucky Lady by Steve Jackson

Anyone who has ever stood a watch at sea, or wants to live with the Sailors through the agony of USS Franklin and the saga of USS Santa Fe, will enjoy this book, and revel in Jackson's tight descriptions of those at sea, and those at home waiting, waiting. Read the article.

Christmas and New Year Greetings

Terry and Mac wish all our visitors to AHOY, and their families, a Happy and Safe Christmas, and a most productive 2004.

Terry and Mac wish all our visitors to AHOY, and their families,
a Happy and Safe Christmas, and a most productive 2004.

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My life on the Internet

(Work in progress) Read the article.

Today I had a visit Peter Flahavin and Bruce Petty researchers and authors on Guadalcanal and Saipan

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Searching for sunken 17th. Century British warship, HMS Sussex, carrying a fortune

HMS Sussex sunk in the Straits of Gibraltar - click to read the articleBack in 1694, HMS Sussex, an 80 gun British warship sank in a severe storm near the Straits of Gibraltar. Research has uncovered that at this time she carried a vast sum of money, thought then to be worth a Million Pounds, it was destined to become a payment to the Duke of Savoy, then a British Ally in the war againnst France and King Louis XIV. Read the article.

Chief Machinist's Mate James E. Pike sunk in Darwin Harbour in USS Peary, 19th. of February 1942

USS Peary on fire - click to read the articleFrom her crew of 143 Officers and Sailors only 53 survived, and 12 of these were rescued by the small examination vessel HMAS Southern Cross. Onwards to 1997, when in the Sydney branch of the Australian National Archives a small note turned up inside the log of HMAS Southern Cross.


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National Maritime Museum, Greenwich. London

National Maritime Museum Greenwich - click to read the articleAt Greenwich on the banks of the Thames River is housed the National Maritime Museum, also on this site in the Royal Park are, the Royal Observatory, the Queen's House, and the old Royal Naval College. There is much to enjoy on your arrival, allow yourself plenty of time to visit this wonderful and historical area. Read the article.

Semper Fidelis March and Navy Hymn

US Marines raise Old Glory on Iwo Jima - click to read the articleThis famous march written by John Philip Sousa takes its name from the US Marines motto, Semper Fidelis ( Always faithful ) He wrote it "one night after my comrades in the Marine Corp had sung their famous hymn at Quantico."



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Lost HMAS Sydney again in the news.

One can but hope this attempt to unravel the 62 year old mystery about Sydney's disappearance, will prove successful. Read the article.

Introduction to stories of Commander Warwick Bracegirdle DSC ** RAN. "Gentlemen Cordite"

A main reason for her success was the wonderful gunnery department, lead by that legendery Naval and Specialist Gunnery Officer, Lieutenant Commander Warwick Bracegirdle, RAN. In his WW2 service  Braces as he was affectionately known, won not one, not two, but three Distinguished Service Crosses. A most unusual feat. Read the article.

Which future American President worked as a 23 year old Mining Engineer in Australia? It was Herbert Hoover!

Future US president, Herbert Hoover, worked as an Engineer in Australia - click to the the articleHigh on a hill at Leonora, some 830 kilometers east of Perth, sits a house planned by a young mining engineer, Herbert Hoover, who went on to become the 31st. President of the United States of America.



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Gangway collapses on World's biggest Luxury Liner. Accident at Queen Mary 2 building site kills 15

Giant Luxury Liner Queen Mary 2, Site of an accident killing 15 people - click to read the articleThe biggest luxury liner in the world had only successfully carried out her sea trials off Brittany last week. This giant ship being built at a cost of $ US 800 Million, for Carnival Corp's Cunard Line by the French heavy engineering company, Alstrom at its Chantiers de l'Atlantic shipyard, when last weekend 40 friends and family members of shipyard workers were crossing a gangway to board the ship for a visit when it collapsed under their feet. Read the article.

Six US Presidents who served in the United States Navy

Lieutenant John. F. Kennedy USNR - Click to read the articleIf I pose this question How many US Presidents served in the Unites States Navy and then asked you to name them, I would hope to have this response.



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New Australian War Memorial at Hyde Park Corner London dedicated by Her Majesty the Queen, and Australian Prime Minister on Tuesday the 11th. of November 2003.

New Australian War Memorial at Hyde Park Corner London - click to read the articleSuperimposed on these 24,000 place names are 47 battle sites, where Australians fought in both wars, eg, sacred names like Gallipoli, Lone Pine, are listed, as are names such as Borneo, Lingayen Gulf, and Savo Island ( where I was sunk in HMAS Canberra ) places where I was present in ships of the RAN. These names will be scanned over all the years to come, as veterans seek out their specific place name from whence they enlisted, then the scenes of battles where they fought. As we all die off, our children in the times ahead, when visiting London will make a point of going to Hyde Park Corner, they will then undertake a similar exercise. Read the article.

The Sloop Neva, the first Russian ship to visit Australia

Leontiy Andrianovich Captain of the Sloop Neva. - click to read the articleIn the first half of the 19th. Century, a number of Russian ships visited the newly found British Colony at Sydney Cove. However, the first to make its way below the equator, and call in at Sydney, was the sloop Neva, under the command of Lieutenant Gagemeister Leontiy Andrianvich, his ship visited over the 16th. of June to the 1st. of July in 1807.


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The Sinking of the Spanish Republican Submarine C3, by German U-Boat U-34

U-Boat U-24 sank Spanish submarine C3 - click to read the articleOf a crew of 40, only 3 survived, seamen Isidoro de la Orden Ibanez and Asensio Lidon Jimenez, engaged in disposing rubbish overboard were flung clear by the blast. Merchant Captain Agustin Garcia Vinas, seconded as the Submarine's navigator, was in the conning tower talking to C3's Captain when the torpedo struck home. Read the article.

What is the oldest shipwreck ever found?

Amphoras recovered from the Tektas wreck - click to read the article
 It would appear that the oldest shipwreck found to date, is that of the 5th. BC vessel which was found in 1996 at Tektas, Burnu in Turkey. This site is located in the Agean off the west coast of Turkey, between the Greek isles of Chios and Samos.



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The sea yields up more gold. Civil War shipwreck, SS Republic, gives up its Golden Secret

SS Republic - click to read the articleDiscussion about the value of this gold shipment carried in this old Civil War era vessel, have indicated it may be worth up to US $180 Million. Should this valuation be correct, I have no doubt, that the lure of its recovery means we have not yet read the final chapter on but one more gold saga from the bottom of the sea, this time, off the American coast at Savannah. Read the article.

John Lorimer R.I.P. one of my Royal Australian Naval College term mates

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His Majesty's Auxiliary Troopship Shropshire

His Majesty's Auxiliary Troopship Shropshire - click to read the articleThis ship with the same name as our wartime heavy cruiser HMAS Shropshire, was built in  1911 as a Federal Steam Navigation Company Ltd of London ship in UK. She was 8,130 tons, and in WW1 was requisitioned along with othe British ships and a few captured enemy vessels to transport members of AIF overseas.


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The Golden Cruiser. HMS Edinburgh sunk in WW2, carrying 5 tons of  Russian gold with her

HMS Edinburgh sunk in WW2, carrying 5 tons of Russian gold - Click to read the articleThis ship carried Rear Admiral Bonham-Carter, now with his flag Captain H.W. Faulkner, they surveyed the damage caused by the German U-boat torpedoes, but an added burden confronted them both. In one of the ship's magazines, 5 tons of Russian gold had been loaded from a heavily guarded lighter before they sailed. Purporting to be ammunition boxes, this pretence was soon aborted, as stencilled water painted marks on the boxes soon were washed away by the sleet falling at the time, dripping red splashes onto the slush covered deck. Read the article.

Old Ironsides, USS Constitution

USS Constitition. Old Ironsides - click to read the articleTo the astonishment of the British, all their shot merely bounced harmlessly off the hull of Constitution, her thick oak planking preserving her from harm, thus giving the ship the nickname of "Old Ironsides". Later in December of 1812, another British Frigate Java met her fate in battle with Constitution. Before peace was finally declared in 1815, she had captured eight more British ships. Read the article.

Cruiser Aurora signals start of Russian Revolution in October 1917

Russian Cruiser Aurora - click to read the articleAurora assisted in the seige of Leningrad in WW2, was sunk, recovered, and rebuilt. Sitting at its berth alongside the famous Hermitage, this ship has witnessed the demise of the old USSR, and the emergence of the present amalgam of individual States formed from the old Soviet Union. What does the future hold for a ship that has spanned all the differing regimes that have held sway in this part of the world? Read the article.

World War 2 Campaign Stars and Medals

Australian WW2 Campaign Stars - click to read the articleThere were 8 Campaign Stars, the Defence Medal, and the War Medal awarded for active service in WW2, in addition some Australian Servicemen could qualify for the Australian Service Medal 1939-1945, and lastly the Australian Service Medal 1945-1975 was issued for peace keeping or non warlike operations in a wide variety of theatres over the years of 1945 to 1975. This last medal is always issued with a clasp to denote the area of service. Read the article.

Striking a Bell to Record Time, and Watches kept at Sea

Sship's bell, from WW2 Australian Mine Sweeper or Corvette HMAS Mildura - click to read the articleThe striking of a bell to designate the hours of being on watch at sea has its origin in the days of sailing ships. Then, the average sailor could not afford to own his own timepiece, and so relied on the ship's bell to tell the time.




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SS Athenia, First Casualty of the U-Boat War on the 3rd. of September 1939

Berlin found out about this attack from news reports, and knowing that U-30 was the only Boat in that area, were soon able to pin this error on her. SS Athenia sinking, First Casualty of the U-Boat War - click to read the articleHitler now wanted a cover up. He did not wish to have another event like the Lusitania affair from WW1 coming back to haunt him, plus Donitz, and his U-Boat arm. Goebells spread the word that it was the British that had themselves torpedoed Athenia, in their attempt to bring the United States quickly into WW2 against Germany Read the article.

60th. Anniversary of Operation Jaywick

Krait - click to read the articleThis was an amazing feat carried out with great daring and skill, at a time when the Japanese forces were in full cry, rampaging across the Pacific, it was but a small set back for the enemy, but at least we felt all was not lost, and we could hit back if only in a small way. The Krait raid will long be remembered with pride by Australian Servicemen. Read the article.

USS Liberty attacked by Israeli forces in International Waters in the Mediterranean on the 8th. of June 1967.

The proportions of USS Liberty and the ship that the Israeli's claim to have mistaken her for, the Egyptian El Quesir - click to read the articleShortly after 1400 ( 2 PM ) Liberty  was subjected to air attacks from Israeli Mirage and Mystere jet aircraft. Cannon fire straffed the ship from end to end, rockets were used and, finally these supposedly friendly aircraft dropped napalm cannisters on board the US ship.




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The Navy's HERE . Rescue of 300 British POW's From Altmark. February 1940.

HMS Cossack arrives at Leith, Scotland with her load of British Merchant Captains,
 Officers and crews, February 17 1940, after their dramatic rescue from the German Altmark. - click to read the articleFinally salvation was at hand, a young officer in the cruiser Arethusa keeping a sharp lookout, spotted a shadowy shape passing close by, also present the mast and funnels of a torpedo boat, turning out to be an escort for a ship with a German ensign, on closing further, the name Altmark was clearly visible on her counter. Read the article.

Decommissioned Russian Nuclear powered Submarine K-159 Sinks Whilst Under Tow

Russian Nuclear Submarines at Vidyayevo Naval Base awaiting decommissioning - click to read the articleHer base had been in the town of Gremikha, and it was arranged to tow this submarine to a scrapyard in the town of Polarnye. K-159 was under tow on four floating hulls, and whilst in the Barents Sea a fierce storm struck on the 30th. of August 2003, she was ripped off these hulls to sink in 170 metres of water. Of her towing crew of 10, only one sailor survived. Read the article.

England versus Spain. The Defeat of the Spanish Armada. 1588

Mary Rose, sunk in the Solent in 1545 with the loss of about 700 sailors - click to read the articleHenry VIII was very conscious of the growing  naval power of James the IVth. of Scotland, who, at that stage had an alliance with the French. James had built up quite a fleet of ships, including the Great Michael, carrying a huge gun. To counter this ship, and the Scottish fleet, Henry built new ships including the famous Mary Rose, which sank in the Solent in 1545 with the loss of some 700 sailors ... Read the article.

The Genesis of the Austrian Navy.

The Austrian Navy - click to read the articleThe Danube River with a length of 2,840 kilometers was an important link in Austria's defence chain. Not only trade plied its waters, but it became a supply line during wartime. The Turks to the east were always a threat, and the Hapsburgs reacted by producing sail- frigates for service in the middle and lower reaches of the Danube. These ships of the 16th Century may be marked as the genesis of an Austrian navy. Read the article.

Desiderata: In my long life, if I had to offer a philosophy about life to my Grandchildren, this would sum it all up

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Settlement of Australia. The First Fleet. 1787-1788

HMS Sirius - Click to read the articleCaptain James Cook had sighted the east coast of Australia in 1770, and then landed at Botany Bay. On his return to England, he had recommended this site as a suitable place to establish a settlement in this new and far off land. With the housing of many convicted felons presenting problems in England, his recommendation came to be considered, and it was decided to now establish a penal colony in Australia.  Read the article.

Australian WW2 POW's die at sea en route to Japan. The sinking of Montevideo Maru on the 1st. of July 1942

Montevideo Maru - click to read the articleSo, 60 years on, with the sinking of Montevideo Maru, by a friendly Submarine ( of course, Lieutenant Commander Wright in Sturgeon, had no way of knowing the ship he lined up in his periscope carried Australian Prisoners of War, enroute to slave labour in Japan ) about 610 Australian soldiers and  130 civilians perished. It was Australia's worst Maritime Loss, almost twice as many died that night on that 1st. of July 1942, as did in ten years of war in Viet Nam.  Read the article.

Wartime Memorials across Australia

Australian War Memorials - click to read the articleWar Memorials to remember the service of those who died or served in time of war to keep our country free are many and varied. I have most probably but scratched the surface of this subject, but this article serves to remind us all " That the cause of freedom " carries a high price, very often it proved fatal for many, and we need to continue to recall with pride and gratitude, the service of those who did not return.  Read the article.

SS Ceramic, a victim of U-515 on the 7th. of December 1942

The SS Ceramic - click to read the articleWhen steaming west of the Azores on the 7th. of December 1942 the Ceramic was sighted and then stalked by the German U-Boat U-515. We have already made the acquaintance of this boat and her Captain Werner Henke. The weather was cold with rough seas and the time about 2000. ( 8 PM ) Then Henke struck with one torpedo, and several minutes after this explosion, two more hits were made in the engine room.


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Korvettenkapitan ( granted postumously ) Werner Henke. A top U-Boat Ace.

Werner Henke - Click to read the articleOn the 18th. of July 1944 Admiral Donitz issued the following day order for his U-Boat force:

"Commander Kapitanleutnant Werner Henke, recipient of the Knights Cross with Oak Leaves to the Iron Cross, was killed during an attempt to escape from captivity. We have lost one of our best. He combined reckless daring with prudence and outstanding ability. He proved himself against convoys, independent merchantships and warships, and sinking 26 ships for a total of 166,000 tons, one cruiser and one destroyer. We strike the colors for a man of iron and a brave fighter who was an inspiring example to his crew, and for a good comrade. The struggle against the enemy, in which he was killed, will continue."

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U-Boat 869 believed sunk off Gibraltar in 1945, turns up on the bottom off New Jersey, USA.

Actual loacation of U-869 - Click to read the articleReported to have been sunk on the 28th. of February 1945, off Gibraltar by the US Destroyer Escort USS Fowler, and the French Sub Chaser L'Indescret, was the German U-Boat, U-859. Not so apparently, this boat had been ordered to move her operational area from off shore America to close to Gibraltar by Admiral Donitz of U-Boat Command. This order was never received, and she stayed operational off America, here she became sunk, self destroyed.  Read the article.

French Submarine La Perle, who wants friends that sink you?

Submarine hulls of a boat similar to La Perle - Click to read the article

There seems little doubt that HMCS Dunver, the ship in which SOE was embarked, would have received signals with information about La Perle and her Atlantic crossing. At the subsequent Board of Inquiry, Stephen's gave evidence that he had not seen the sailing orders of La Perle from St John's, and was unaware of the bombing restrictions in force until after the fatal attack. He however did acknowledge that the most recent signal received from Western Approaches did place La Perle close to the Swordfish sighting. He should have been more careful with his use of attacking aircraft.

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U-767 Lost and found

Open hatch of U767 at 250 feet in English Channel. Click to read the article.
 Note these photographs are reproduced with the permission of Leigh Bishop. Thanks Leigh.She made but one patrol with very limited success, one ship of 1,370 tons sunk, the British Frigate Mourne, on the 15th. of June 1944. Only three days later U-767 was detected by three ships from the British Support Group 14, HM ships Fame, Inconstant, and Havelock. Fame attacked with her Hedge Hog, reporting two or three hits at a depth of 95 feet, the Hedge Hog, an ahead throwing weapon, firing off 24 under water projectiles which only explode on achieving a hit on their submarine target.

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HMAS Shropshire, a book by Stan Nicholls, is available online

Cover of the book, HMAS Shropshire by Stan Nicholls is an online book - click the picture for more information.Stan Nicholls who served in Shropshire and wrote the book all about her has just put the entire book up on the web.




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U-Boat U-482, Success, then lost with all hands

The British Admiralty, in a more recent assessment about the destruction of U-482, have now stated that the cause of her loss is unknown. But the most probable cause is: She sank with all hands after striking a mine.

Thus the actual cause of U-482's demise is unlikely to ever be uncovered, as she became yet another victim in the long running saga of The Battle of The Atlantic.

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Tocumwal Historic Aerodrome Museum

(work in progress)

So, why Tocumwal, the back of beyond, for the largest aerodrome at the time in the Southern Hemisphere? To answer that question we have to go back to those fearful years, to the beginning of 1942, when Japan's military might was in full flight towards us. England's invincibility had just been shattered with the sinking of the capital ships Prince of Wales and Repulse, off Singapore which had fallen almost without fight, Papua New Guinea was being occupied and Australia itself was under attack, with the first of 64 air raids on Darwin and surrounding areas. For the first time, bombs were falling on Australian soil and Australian people for the first terrible time were experiencing the terror of air attack, the crash and concussion of bombing, the roar of machine gunning, the stench of smoke and fire and death, and above all, the awful realisation that we were virtually defenceless against an enemy in full cry towards us.

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Visit to Tocomwal New South Wales 11/13 June 2003

We had not seen each other for some 20 years, but have kept in touch over that time, Kevin for many years farmed some 2 square miles of irrigated country at Jerilderie, growing rice, wheat and canola etc, but had sold the farm 2 years ago and moved into Tocomwal, a country town of about 2,000 people nestled close to the Murray River. Read the article.

HMAS Yarra blasted to pieces by Japanese Squadron on the 4th. of March 1942.

HMAS Yarra - click to read the articleAboard the Japanese cruiser Maya, some survivors of HMS Stronghold, sunk two days earlier, watched in horror as Yarra was battered to death, one of them reported:- " Yarra was the only ship left afloat, the two destroyers were circling her, she appeared to be stationary, and were pouring fire into her. She was still firing back, we could see odd gun flashes....the last we saw of Yarra was a high column of smoke, but we were vividly impressed by her fight."  The gun flashes observed must have come from Taylor, still manning his 4 inch mounting. Read the article.

The Purple Heart. The United States Oldest Military Award

United States Purple Heart commemorative stamp - click to read the articleOriginally this medal was a " badge of distinction for meritorious action." but this medal is these days awarded to members of the United States services who are either killed or wounded in action. Read the article.

Action against the French Fleet at Mers-el-Kebir by the British Force H over 3rd./6th. July 1940

French Ship Dunkurque - click to read the articleIf the French Admiral refused to accept any of these proposals Sir James Somerville could accept demilitarisation of the French ships at their present berths, providing it could be achieved within 6 hours, and this action would prevent their use over the next 12 months. If none of these alternatives were accptable to the French, Somerville was ordered to destroy the ships, especially Dunkerque and Strasbourg. The ships at Oran should also be destroyed if it did not entail any considerable loss of civilian lives.

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Lighthouses on the Victorian Coast

Cape Otway Lighthouse - click to read the articleVictoria is the smallest and most southern state on the mainland of Australia, but it probably is the site for the greatest number of maritime disasters around the entire coast of our nation. Particularly along the rugged coastline of western Victoria which stretches from Port Phillip Heads westwards to the South Australian border, to be known as the Shipwreck Coast. Read the article.

German U-331 sinks British Battleship HMS Barham in the Mediterranean on the 25th. of November 1941

HMA Barham explodes - click to read the articleWhen on the 25th. of November 1941, Barham was steaming in the Mediterranean, with 2 other British Battleships screened by 8 destroyers to cover an attack on an Italian convoy, Kapitan Leutnant Hans-Diedrich Freiherr von Tiesenhausen, in U-331, sighted this group, at a range of only 1,200 yards he fired a spread of 4 torpedoes at the centre battleship in the line of three. Barham was struck by 3 of these torpedoes, she rolled to port, her after magazine exploded with a horrific roar, she quickly sank taking 2/3 of her crew with her. Read the article.

Sinking of the Struma, yet another tragedy at sea during WW2

Struma - click to read the articleWith little food or water, crammed into this small craft the almost  800 Jews, were in a pitiful state, they drifted aimlessly all night, to be located the following morning by a Russian submarine, a torpedo was fired to quickly sink Struma. 269 women, 103 children and 406 men all died, there was but one survivor, David Stolier. Read the article.

The Falkland Islands War, 1982.

HMS Ardent mortally damaged in the Faulklands - click to read the article

Britain had drawn a Total Exclusion Zone around the Falkland Islands group, and threatened to destroy both enemy ships and aircraft entering into the TEZ. On the 2nd. of May, the British Atomic submarine Conqueror came upon the Argentinean Cruiser General Belgrano, ( this ship was of course the ex USS Phoenix, which was alongside at Pearl Harbor when the Japanese attacked on the 7th. of December 1941, she escaped to sea, she had a distinguished career in the Pacific War, often working with my ship HMAS Shropshire.)

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Clipper Ship Loch Ard, a victim of the Shipwreck Coast in 1878

Loch Ard - click to read the articleWhen she was almost three months out from England, only a few days from her destination, Loch Ard ran into bad weather with poor visibility. Captain George Gibb was way off course, when sheer cliffs almost at the waters edge were sighted, only some 2 kilometers away, he fought to gain more searoom for his ship, dropping anchors. All to no avail, his clipper struck Mutton Bird Island with an awful crash, to sink within 15 minutes.  Loch Ard had come to grief off the now named Loch Ard Gorge, situated in Port Campbell National Park, on the southern coast of Victoria, about 250 kilometers west of Melbourne. Read the article.

The Battle for Malta. Six Vital Months - Spring and Summer 1942

The Battle for Malta - click to read the article"The greatest of battles for supply fell upon Malta. This was now turned into a hell. Malta was a base for British submarines and aircraft preying on Axis lines of supply to Libya. In the spring of 1942, the Axis decided to obliterate that base and they wanted to starve it as well. Right through the spring they turned such blitz upon Malta as no other island or city had seen in the war. It was a siege of annihilation. One after another all the great sieges were eclipsed - England and Odessa, Sebastopol and Tobruk. Malta became the most bombed  place on earth." Read the article.

The Amazing Seabees of WW2, their road across the Pacific to Tokyo

Seabees Recruiting Poster - click to read the articleThe Seabees left behind them a proud record of achievement, from their Training Camps in the United States, they battled and built all the way across the Pacific to Japan. The road to Tokyo now complete! 325, 000 men had served in the Seabees across the world in WW2.



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USS Mount Hood Explodes at Manus 10th. of November 1944

USS Mount Hood explosion - click to read the articleEnemy action was ruled at as a cause of this disaster, the most probable reason for the explosion appears to have been rough handling of ammunition being loaded or unloaded, and it seems likely that the accident was caused by the detonation of Torpex filled Depth bombs being loaded into number 4 and 5 holds. Detonation could have been set off with a bomb on its way down to a hold striking a hatch, or the careless dropping of it into a hold. Read the article.

Australian Hospital ship Centaur Torpedoed by Japanese Submarine

The Centaur, sunk by Japanese submarine - click to read the articleTwo days later, at approximately 0410 ( 4.10 AM ) when some 50 miles East North East of Brisbane, Centaur was torpedoed without any warning by Japanese Submarine I-177. The resulting death toll was appaling, only 64 survived from 332 people on board, the worst Merchant Ship tragedy on the Australian coast during WW2. Read the article.

The Battle of Leyte Gulf. 23 - 26 October 1944

The Battle of Leyte Gulf. 23 - 26 October 1944, click to read the article.

In July of 1944, President Franklin Roosevelt traveled to San Diego, to embark in USS Baltimore, a heavy cruiser, which now sailed for Honolulu. The President hosted a dinner on board with Admiral Chester Nimitz and General Douglas MacArthur, he turned to the General with:

"Douglas, where do we go next?"

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Temporary Battle of Leyte Gulf picture page

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2nd Temporary Battle of Leyte Gulf picture page

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An Unusual Link Between HMAS Warramunga and HMAS Warramunga 1

Warramunga Caul Certificate - click to read the articleAccording to Scottish folklore, if a child is born with a Caul over its head it will never drown. A Caul is that part of the amniotic sac which SOMETIMES envelopes the head of a child in the form of a membrane. It is a sailor's tradition that those who have a Caul cannot drown and when given to a ship causes that ship to be protected. When Warramunga 1 was "born" during WW2 she was presented with a Caul to prevent her from sinking. Read the article.

Accident to Chinese Submarine No.361 kills all its crew

Chnese Sub 361 sinks - click to read the article.On May the 3rd. 2003, Reuters reported that China was being unusually frank in reporting a Submarine accident in which all 70 of the crew had died. This disaster came about off the North East coast in Chinese territorial waters, but the cause was nor really disclosed. Read the article.

The Golden Shipwreck. Steam Clipper Royal Charter comes to grief

The Royal Charter - click to read the articleClose to Cape Horn an iceberg was narrowly avoided, and by the 24th. of October, the ship was anchored some 20 miles off the port of Cork in Ireland. Course was set for Liverpool, and with night fast falling, the wind was freshening, to quickly develop into a full gale, which fell with great fury upon the ship. Off the Skerries, Captain Taylor called for a Pilot, to no avail, again he asked for a Pilot off Point Lynas, but no pilot boat was forthcoming, it was far too rough for any small boat to venture out into the gale force winds and wild seas. Read the article.

An Anzac Day Address to Caulfield Grammar School

On Friday last, the 25th. of April it was 88 years ago that members of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps stormed ashore at Gallipoli in turkey. That legendary word, "ANZAC," was coined, and , entered for all time into the language of both Australia and New Zealand. Read the article.

Heaving the Lead, and Markings on a lead line

Heaving the Lead - click to read the article.A lead weight hollowed out at the bottom is fitted to a lead line, so that it may be armed with tallow, this allows the nature of the bottom to be ascertained when a lead line is used by a seaman to find the depth of water when a ship is navigating in restricted or shallow water.


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Index to the Submarine Articles

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Dutch Submarine Operations. WW2, 1941-1945

Dutch Submarine aground on Ladd Reef click picture to read the articleI am indebted to the many contributers and co-webmasters of this site: The Submarines of the Royal Netherlands Navy. for the source material from which I have produced this work. Read the article.

The Australians at War Film Archive

Our Veteran's Affairs Department have indicated they are commissioning the Australians at War Film Archive. A film and production company Mullion Creek Productions Pty Ltd  will gather material over two years speak to a large number of Veterans and film about 20,000 hours of interviews. Read the article.

Early French Explorers of Australia

Nicolas Bauding, Click picture to read the article.In the 18th. century, there are exotic French names such as Nicolas Baudin, Jean-Francois de Galaup Compte de La Perouse, Antoine Raymond Joseph de Brimi D'Entrecasteaux, and Louis Bougainville, names that one would expect to find gracing elegant Parisian salons, rather than exploring the distant shores of Australia, and the vast expanses of the Pacific Ocean. But no, these early French explorers and their small ships were out pushing back the frontiers of exploration, seeking out new territory to chart and claim for France, to expand her colonial empire. Read the article.

Early Explorations of Australia  - Index

Click the image to see the Explorer indexTerra Australis located south of the equator attracted the attention of the Dutch, English and French Explorers and Navigators. The Dutch were here first on the North East corner and West coast of this new land, much later, the English and French followed, these two countries almost dead heated in the area of Botany Bay. These articles cover this age of discovery and some settlement, far far away from Europe. Read the article.

Early Dutch Explorers on the Australian Coast 1606 - 1636

Dutch Exploration of Australia, Click image to read the articleThe first Europeans to visit Australia were not the English navigators but came from Holland. During the 15th. and 16th. centuries it was the Spanish, Portuguese and the Dutch seamen that pushed back the exploration frontiers. My country might well speak Dutch rather than English, it took the British explorer Captain James Cook until 1770 to discover and claim for England the east coast of Australia. Read the article.

Plaque at Fremantle, Western Australia to commemorate the United States, British, and Dutch Submarines that served the Allied cause in WW2 that operated out of this Australian State.

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I have been asked to identify these 4 County Class cruisers

[Image]It is difficult to track down the 4 County Class Type 8 inch gunned Cruisers in this quite unusual photograph. It was obviously taken  pre WW2, there is no sign of any radar displays on the masts of any of these ships. The 8 inch cruisers were divided in to several different classes. Read the article.

Passport to the World over 64 years. Pages from my Travel Diary

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The Beaufort Wind Scale

The Beaufort Wind Scale we used at sea to record the wind speed in the Ship's Log as Officer of the Watch. Read the article.

Boxing the Compass

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Tracking Sunderland Crew Members for a Journal Article

I asked Mac what sort of research was needed to find the names of the Sunderland's crew. Here is Mac's response, published here in hopes that it may help another researcher. - TK Read the article.

Naval Battles in the Solomon Islands over August/November 1942 turn the tide of the Pacific War

Click the picture to read the articleJapanese forces now started their mad dash southwards, in December, they had invaded Northern Malaya, sunk the Royal Navy Battle Ship Prince of Wales, and the Battle Cruiser Repulse, leaving the gate to Singapore wide open. Read the article.

HMAS Goorangai chopped in two by M.V. Duntroon. Small Mine Sweeper first RAN ship lost in WW2

HMAS Goorangai, click picture to read the articleHMAS Goorangai, of only 223 tons, fitted out as an auxiliary mine sweeper, on the night of the 20th. of November 1940, in a southerly gale, was chopped in two by the Motor Vessel Duntroon, and quickly sank with her entire crew of 24. Read the article.

The Discovery of Port Phillip Bay, Victoria, Australia, and its early settlement 1802 - 1835

The discovery of this large bay on the southern coast of Australia is largely tied up with a small brig Lady Nelson. When fully loaded, her freeboard was just under three feet. Lieutenant James Grant in 1799, had been commissioned by the then First Lord of the Admiralty The Duke of Portland, to survey the south and south west coast of Australia. He was given Lady Nelson with a crew of twelve and stored for a nine months voyage. Read the article.

Wyatt Earp, A Ship of Several Names and a Lifetime of Adventure.

Wyatt Earp - Click to read the articleBuilt as Fanefford, in Norway in 1919, this single decked motor ship was 150 feet long and when fully loaded drew between 16 to 17 feet, her tonnage just 402 tons. A vessel that had sailed under four different names, in both the northern and southern hemispheres, had been involved in a multitude of shipping activities, including making aviation history in the Antarctic, finally came to a sad end on a dark and stormy night off the coast of Queensland Australia. Read the article.

Lieutenant Colonel Jimmie Doolittle's B-25 Raid on Japan. 18th. of April 1942.

Click to read the articleThe suprise and humilitating attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor on the 7th. of December in 1941, had left its mark on the American phyche and public morale was at a low ebb. To at least make a token strike back at the Japanese Homeland, President Franklin D. Roosevelt authorised a dangerous mission by a B-25 bomber raid against Tokyo and industrial targets in Japan. Read the article.

Gun Turret from USS Monitor Sees the Light of Day After 140 Years

Click to see the Monitor articleBecause the Monitor was quite deep in about 70 metres of water, it was then necessary for the diving team to use saturation diving, ie the divers lived in a pressurised chamber for up to two weeks at a time on the Wotan, a salvage barge. On the evening of the 5th. of August 2002, US Navy divers hooked large steel cables onto the turret which was then slowly winched to the surface. Read the article.

Memorial to HMAS Sydney and her crew is dedicated at Geraldton in Western Australia

78 men from Kormoran’s crew of 393 died in this battle, which recorded the Royal Australian Navy’s greatest loss in a single engagement, all 645 of HMAS Sydney’s crew perished. Even at this distance in time from her sinking on the 19th. of November 1941, we still do not know the whole story about her sinking, or where she finally came to rest in the depths of the Indian Ocean. Read the article.

Canadian Tribal Destroyer HMCS Athabaskan Located off Brittany, France

Canadian Tribal AthabaskanThe Divers Net on the 13th. of December 2002, reported locating the Canadian Tribal Class Destroyer HMCS Athabaskan in 90 metres of water off Batz Island, Brittany. The French diver, Jaques Ouchakjoff found the wreck of this 2,000 ton Tribal. Read the article.

Found! Two Dutch Light Cruisers, sunk by the Japanese Navy in 1942

HMS Jupiter Ensign - click to read the articleOn the 1st. of December 2002, an International Diving Team working from MV Empress, and using side scan sonar equipment were seeking the British cruiser Exeter off Bawean Island north of Java, when they came across the two Dutch light cruisers De Ruyter and Java.

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My Mother and Father's Wedding Day

My Mother, Minnie Winifred Greening, married my Father, Jesse Herbert Gregory, at St Mary’s The Virgin Anglican Church, Prittlewell Essex, on the 24th. of August 1918. Read the article.

Operation Downfall, The Planned Invasion of Japan on November 1st. 1945

Click to "Operartion Downfall" articleHidden in the US National Archives for many years were the Top Secret documents that related to the Plans for Operation Downfall, the Invasion of Japan, scheduled to take place on November 1st. 1945. The United States had finalised this operation over the American spring and summer of that year. These documents, now declassified, allow us to contemplate the horrific task, that in the main, US forces would have faced when attempting to invade the Japanese homeland. Read the article.

Pictures for Operation Downfall

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The Charting of Australia:  1795 - 1803 Matthew Flinders. 1774 - 1814, Master Navigator and Explorer

Cick to Matthew Flinders articleMatthew Flinders, an ambitious man, completed a remarkable voyage around the continent of Australia, which he charted, being the one person to literally put Australia on the map!



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History of the Boatswain's Call

Click to Boatswain's Call articleIt was first used on English ships in the thirteenth century, during the crusades and became known as "The Call" about 1670 when the Lord High Admiral wore a gold whistle as a badge of rank.  This was known as the "Whistle of Honour." Read the article.

A few Sea Birds from the Oceans Of the World

Click to articleThe Albatross lives at sea, and will follow a ship, using up currents to soar aloft, and barely move its wings as it swoops and climbs, a wonderful sight to follow the movements of this graceful seabird.



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The Loss of Trial in 1622, Oldest Wreck on the Australian Coast

The English East India Company in 1621, dispatched their ship Trial on a journey to the East Indies via the Cape of Good Hope. It had only been 10 years earlier that this supposedly faster route to the East Indies had been pioneered by the Dutch. It was not until 1969 that an attempt was made to find the wreck site of this first British shipwreck on the Australian coast. Read the article.

The Genesis of the Royal Australian Navy

Now, well over 200 years since my country was founded, and 100 years since its own Navy became reality, I believe, as an Island Nation, we still need to turn our eyes to the sea. Read the article.

The Lonely Vigil. Australian Coast Watching in The Pacific War.

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Loss of HMAS Sydney

This extract was originally published in the Sydney Morning Herald - a German crewman describes Australia's biggest World War II disaster. Read the article.

Arlington National Cemetery. Virginia. United States of America.

Casualities in the American Civil War were extremely high, hospitals and burial grounds near Washington D.C. were under extreme pressure for both beds and final resting places. It was in 1864, that Quartermaster General, Montgomery Meigs proposed that 200 acres of the Robert E. Lee’s family property at Arlington should become a cemetery. Read the article.

The Role of the Rescue Ships in the Battle of the Atlantic

In WW2, the British Merchant Navy suffered losses of some 32,952 personnel from a total strength of about 185,000. This figure represents a loss of 17.8%, and compares unfavourably with losses of 6% for the British Army, 9% for the Royal Air Force, and 9.3% for the Royal Navy. These enormous losses would have been even higher were it not for the 29 Rescue Ships which became operational from January 1941, and served until April 1945. Read the article.

German U-Boat U-534. Her Three Separate Lives. From 1942 /1996, and is still on display near Liverpool.

U-534 - click to read the articleU-534 was taken over by the Warship Preservation Trust, and in May 1996 was brought to England, and placed on display at The Nautilus Maritime Museum at Birkenhead, Wirral, across the Mersey River from the City of Liverpool. It was symbolic that this area was chosen to house this ex WW2 German U-Boat, as it was from and to Liverpool, that many convoys were despatched or arrived during that titanic struggle, The Battle of the Atlantic. Read the article.

The Blue Star Line's Tuscan Star, Torpedoed and sunk. The 6th. of September, 1942. Another Victim of the U-Boat War.

This ship had been built as a Motor Vessel of 11,400 tons in 1930,and usually carried refrigerated cargo on her return journeys to England, and general cargo on the outward legs of her voyages.  I was aware that this ship had been sunk some 9 months after I sailed in her, but did not know the circumstances surrounding her sinking, until I recently read a book about U-109, published in 1997. Read the article.

The Shipwrecks of King Island in Bass Strait

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Ex Prisoners of War Memorial, Botanical Gardens, Wendouree Parade, Ballarat, Victoria, Australia.

In all the wars that my country, Australia has been involved in, a total of 34,737 servicemen have been captured and spent time imprisoned as Prisoners of War. It is intended to build a Memorial to mark their service in the Botanical Gardens at Ballarat, a country city in Victoria. Read the article.

Certificate of World War Two Service

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Blessing of the Royal Australian Navy Cruisers Memorial Cairn, November 2002

The ceremony was conducted by Reverend Canon W. Devonshire with me, as President of HMAS Canberra/HMAS Shropshire Association here in Victoria reading the inscriptions on the brass plaque detailing the service of the seven cruisers during WW2, HMA Ships, Australia, Canberra, Shropshire, all 8 inch gunned heavy cruisers, and Adelaide, Hobart. Perth, and Sydney, all 6 inch gunned light cruisers. Read the article.

Radio Interview on 10 November, 2002

This morning I was interviewed on Melbourne Community FM radio station 3RRR. Read the article.

HMAS Shropshire Memorial Tree, Australian War Memorial, Canberra ACT

In the gardens that surround the Australian War Memorial are a number of trees bearing a brass plaque that remembers a specific Army Unit, Airforce Group or a Naval Ship. One such tree was planted by the HMAS Shropshire Association, it too, bore a plaque. Read the article.

The Victorian Chapter of The Naval Historical Society of Australia Inc. is remembering the year of 1942 with a photographic display: Battle of the Coral Sea. May 1942, Battle of Midway. June 1942 

Japanese Air Attack at GuadalcanalThe display will be shown at HMAS Cerberus, the RAN's main training depot for Australia, at Crib Point Victoria, during Navy Week, on Sunday the 27th. of October. It will be mounted there, at Club Cerberus. The display will then move to the Prahran Town Hall, Chapel Street Prahran, and be open to the public daily from 10 AM. to 8 PM on Monday the 28th. of October to Friday the 1st. of November 2002. A gold coin will gain admission. Read the article.

Wreck of Royal Navy Submarine E-10 found after 87 years

A team of German divers recently found the wreck of the British WW1 Submarine E-10 in Heliogland in the North Sea.  She had been listed as missing on the 18th. of January in 1915, and it was thought that this boat had been a victim of a moored mine. Read the article.

We get letters and emails

We'll publish some of them and my responses here.  Thanks. Read the article.

Liberty Ship pictures

I got this note from Dave Martin.  Thanks, Dave. Read the article.

Update on the Whereabout of the USS Canberra Bell

I asked Captain Dan Sloss, the US Naval Attache at Canberra, where the USS Canberra Bell had finally rested. His response said it was at the Australian National Maritime Museum which is in Sydney.  See the rest of the story about the search for the ship's bell.  Read the article.

Our 7 Day Inside Passage Cruise and 2 day Rocky Mountaineer  train trip

In August - September, 2002 Denise and I took the Inside Passage Cruise to Alaska and the Rocky Mountaineer train trip. Read the article.

Pictures from our Alaska and Rocky Mountain trip.

Here are the pictures. Read the article.

"Waltzing Matilda"

Listen to "Waltzing Matilda" and learn it's history. Read the article.

Marauders of the Sea, Confederate Merchant Raiders During the American Civil War

CSS SumpterThere were 8 in all, and they decimated the Union fleet of Merchant Ships, and very nearly won the the Civil War. The three most successful were built in England for the rebels, these were Alabama, Florida, and ShenandoahRead the article.

60th Anniversary of the sinking of HMAS Canberra, at the Battle of Savo Island on the 9th. of August 1942.

So, today, I particularly remember my shipmates who died on that fateful night in 1942, and the surviving members of Canberra’s company get less and less each year, but our dwindling numbers do not, and will not, forget your sacrifice. Read the article.

CSS H L Hunley, the Confederate submersible sunk off Charleston Harbour in 1864, found and recovered

Location of CSS Hunley - click to read the articleI first noted the Confederate submersible H L Hunley's place in Naval History, when I wrote my Under Water Warfare. The Struggle Against the Submarine Menace 1939-1945 in 1997.

Off Charleston, South Carolina, in 1864, it had despatched the Union warship USS Housatonic, and itself to the ocean floor, to mark being the first submarine in history to sink a warship. This then, is the story of it's success, demise, and, in 2000, it's discovery and resurrection from its watery grave.

 Read the article.

Admiralty House, The Sydney Residence of the Governor General of Australia

Admiralty House, the Sydney residence of the Australian Governor General, has a long and interesting history dating back to the early days of the convict settlement at Port Jackson.  During my tenure as Aide-de-Camp to His Excellency Sir William McKell over 1950-1953, I often stayed in this grand old home. It is a beautiful house, with it’s lovely staircase, and it’s past traditions of serving Admirals depicted by their family crests in the stained glass windows. Read the article.

Bits of Naval History are tucked into all sort of corners across Australia

I am suprised where one may find little bits of Naval History tucked into all sort of corners across WhyallaAustralia, and some one should try and catalogue it all some day , not that I would know how one would or could start that project.

There is for instance, in the town of Whyalla in the state of South Australia the actual mine sweeper named after this town, the Corvette Whyalla, sitting high and dry in the main street.

 Read the article.

Royal Australian Navy Virtual Fleet

Virtual Fleet is an unique insight to how the RAN operates. It takes you behind the scenes and below decks of billion-dollar submarines, fighting warships, behind controls of specialised helicopters. Click on this link and follow the instructions for the voyage of your life. Read the article.

Shropshire Park. Ulverstone Tasmania.

Unless you are aware of Shropshire Park, you will be taken by suprise when you come across this segment of Australian Naval History, nestling in this quiet corner of Australia, at Ulverstone Tasmania. Read the article.

Letter from the High Commissioner, The Republic of Malta

The Republic of Malta struck the National Commemmorative Medal to mark the Fiftieth Anniversary of the award of the George Cross to Malta. In 1994, I received this letter confering this Medal on me, it was for my service in HMAS Australia in 1940, when as part of Force H based on Gibraltar we had supported a convoy to relieve beleagured Malta. Read the article.

Jervis Year. The Class of 1936. Royal Australian Naval College.

[Image]In January of 1936, 13, thirteen year old boys who were drawn from Victoria, New South Wales, and South Australia, came together as the Jervis Year, at the Royal Australian Naval College, which was located at Australia’s main Naval training depot, HMAS Cerberus at Crib Point Victoria. 

They had been chosen in 1935, from many applicants around Australia who undertook a written examination, then a medical examination, to finally be interviewed by a Board of Naval Officers, who had selected just 13 of them to join the Royal Australian Naval College as Cadet Midshipmen, and undergo 4 years of rigorous training to become Naval Officers in His Majesty’s Royal Australian Navy.

 Read the article.

Picture of Jervis Year. The Class of 1936. Royal Australian Naval College.

Our picture in 1936, 1986, and soon I hope, 2002. Read the article.

Life Begins At Eighty

I have good news for you. The first eighty years of your life are the hardest, the second eighty is a succession of birthday parties. Once you reach eighty, everyone wants to carry your baggage and help you up steps. Read the article.

Holbrook, New South Wales, Submarine Town

[Image]If you drive along the Hume Highway which links the major Australian cities of Melbourne and Sydney, you eventually arrive at the small country town of Holbrook. It is located 400 kilometers from the ocean, and about 500 kilometres from Sydney, my country’s largest city. Imagine your suprise, when you are suddenly confronted, in a park, in the main street of Holbrook, with the huge 90 metre long casing and fin of the RAN Submarine HMAS Otway, squatting in it’s concrete dock. Read the article.

Battle of Matapan

If one looks at the Battle of Matapan as part of a broad canvas, it may be likened to the central segment of a triptych, the complementary parts of this picture are: the mauling of the Italian fleet at Calabria by the Royal Navy, and, Admiral Cunningham's Fleet Air Arm's successful sortie against the Italian Navy at Taranto, in December 1940. Read the article.

Four Australian Icons

four photographs portray the Australian Icons, Sydney Harbour Bridge, The Sydney Opera House, Uluru or Ayer's Rock in Central Australia and, The Melbourne Cricket Ground. Four photographs portray the Australian Icons, Sydney Harbour Bridge, The Sydney Opera House, Uluru or Ayer's Rock in Central Australia (see the picture at right) and, The Melbourne Cricket Ground.  Read the article.

Salvaging the Russian Atomic Submarine Kursk

Map, savlage of Kursk - click to read the articleVOn the 12th. of August 2000, at 23.30 (11.30 PM) the Russian Atomic powered submarine Kursk, did not respond to radio messages, and was declared a wreck ...

Very slowly, the barge crawled off to the floating dock, where a delicate operation to nurse the two sections of the Kursk into the dock was undertaken, at last, she was safely inside, and the dock gates were closed. The most stunning salvage operation ever in Maritime History had been successfully completed.

 Read the article.

Some Quotable Quotes from random sources

"Alright, they’re on our left, they’re on our right, they’re in front of us, they can’t get away this time." Read the article.

USS Arizona Memorial, Hawaii

USS Arizona MemorialThe first steps to erect a Memorial did not come about until the Territory of Hawii, established in 1949, the Pacific War Memorial Commission. Initially, it was US Admiral Arthur Radford, C-in- C Pacific, who recognized the need to remember those who had died, when he ordered a flagpole with a commemorative plaque at its base, be erected over the sunken battleship USS Arizona, on which, 1,177 crewmen had been killed during the Japanese attack. Read the article.

Royal Navy Town Class Destroyers of WW2

Winston Churchill and President Franklin Roosevelt, in 1940, struck a deal under the US Lend Lease Act whereby, 50 old US WW1 Destroyers, which had been part of the US moth ball Fleet since the 1920's, were to be handed over to Britain, in exchange for 99 year leases on bases in the Western Hemisphere. Read the article.

WW2 Liberty Ships - The Bridge of Steel - Spanning the Atlantic - Linking Britain to America

In April of 1941, 800,000 tons of shipping was sent to the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean, by U-Boats, these ships were being sunk at a faster rate than they could be built. In September of 1940, Britain sent a delegation off to the United States with a ship design, and an order for 60 ships, designated as the Ocean Class, of 10,000 tons with a 2,500 horse power engine to produce a speed of 10 knots. This inititive really acted as the catalyst, setting in motion the US move to develop their ship building program, that resulted in the Liberty Ships. Read the article.

The Laws of the Navy

It is my understanding the "The Laws of the Navy" were written by a Royal Navy Captain R.A. Hopwood, at the turn of last century. He later went on to be promoted to Admiral. I had it in my old files, and one does not see it around too much these days, but I thought you may like it, and I think it deserves a wider audience today. Read the article.

Fourteen Australian Prime Ministers I have known

A piece on the 14 Australian Prime Ministers I met at Government House or later in the case of two of them. Some interesting characters there.  Some more pictures yet to come. Read the article.

Why is a Ship Called She?

 Read the article.

Captain James Cook's Endeavour Journal 1768-71

Between the 27th. of May 1768 and the 12th. of July 1771, Captain James Cook circumnavigated New Zealand and charted the east coast of Australia. In his journal, Cook records landing at and naming Botany Bay and Endeavour River, the claiming of the east coast of Australia for England, and his encounters with the Aboriginal people.  Read the article.

Anzac Day, Chatswood, Edward wears my Miniature Medals. 25th. April, 2002

Another Anzac Day has come and gone, but I am sure Edward will recall this one as a little bit special for him. Read the article.

Cruiser Cairn Queenscliff, Victoria

As no Memorial existed to honour the Wartime service of Australia's seven cruisers, the Committee of the HMAS Canberra/HMAS Shropshire Association, decided to remedy this omission. Read the article.

World's luckiest sailor article in the Herald Sun 5 May 2002

I'm in the newspaper! Read the article.

Anzac Class Frigate HMAS Warramunga. FFH-152

I'm excited, as a member of HMAS Warramunga Association I have been invited on board the second ship to carry that name. On Friday next 10 of us will board this Frigate in Port Phillip Bay, and sail in her back to her berth at Station Pier Port Melbourne. Read the article.

The Lone Sailor - The United States Navy Memorial, Washington DC

On Washington's Pennsylvania Avenue sits the impressive United States Navy Memorial. Read the article.

Marauders of the Sea, German Armed Merchant Raiders During World War I

This is part one of Marauders of the Sea.  Part two is already on the web.  Pictures to come later. Read the article.

Marauders of the Sea, German Armed Merchant Raiders During World War 2

One of the lesser reported events of World War 2 is the success achieved by Germany's "Surface Raiders" or Armed Merchant Ships. Look at a globe depicting the world's land masses, and you will be impressed by the vast expanses of oceans that circle the earth, in fact, seven tenths of the World's surface is water.  These oceans became "Home" for the "Marauders of the Sea" in W.W.2 carrying a slew of names such as "Atlantis," (no doubt the doyen of this group) "Orion," "Widder." "Thor," "Pinguin," "Komet," "Michel," "Stier," and "Togo, and, the best known, "Kormoran," who was involved with the disappearance and death of the famous Australian Cruiser "Sydney."  In its own small way this work seeks to redress the paucity of reportage in this area of Maritime History. Read the article.

H.M.A.S. Canberra and the Battle of Savo Island

HMAS Canberra - Click to Read moreI hurried to my action station in the fore control - there was an explosion amidships, we were hit on the 4" gundeck, the Walrus aircraft was blazing fiercely on the catapult. A shell exploded on the port side just below the compass platform and another just aft of the fore control. The plotting office received a direct hit. The shell that demolished the port side of the compass platform mortally wounded the Captain, killed Lieutenant Commander Hole, the Gunnery Officer, wounded Lieutenant Commander Plunkett-Cole, the Torpedo Officer and severely wounded Midshipmen Bruce Loxton and Noel Sanderson. Read the article.

Under Water Warfare, The Struggle Against the Submarine Menace, 1939 -1945

On patrol - click to read articleThis work is dedicated to all who fought at sea or in the air in the Battle of the Atlantic, the Sailors in Naval ships, the Crews of the Merchant Navy, and the Airmen from Coastal Command . This battle raged from the day war was declared on Sunday the 3rd. of September, 1939, to the 4th. of May 1945, when Admiral Donitz ordered his U-Boats to cease operations, and return to base. Read the article.

Tragedy at Sea

During the months of 1945 prior to the surrender of all German Sea. Air, and Land forces to the Allies on May the 8th, a series of disasters at sea happened. A horrific number of deaths resulted, and five German merchant ships were involved. One may well pose the question "Why are so many people unaware of these actions and this huge loss of life?" Read the article.

The Victoria Cross at Sea

In December of 1854, an ex Naval Officer and now a Liberal Member of Parliament, Captain Thomas Scobell, placed a motion before the House of Commons that: "An Order of Merit should be awarded to persons serving in the Navy or Army for distinguished and prominent personal gallantry, and to which, every grade and individual from the highest and lowest, may be admissable." Read the article.

U.S.S. Patterson

Thank you Patterson, and all who sailed in her on that fateful night of August 9, 1942. Read the article.

The Death of HMAS Armidale

Now, more than fifty years on, in a belated attempt to honour him, one of the RAN’s Collins Class Submarines will be christened Sheehan, after this young hero, who gave his life so willingly in trying to save the lives of others. The gallant Armidale and Teddy Sheehan will long remain a part of history in the annals of the Royal Australian Navy. Read the article.

A brief biography

 Read the article.

A Royal Forgery Aboard HMAS Vengeance

A large print was delivered to Her Majesty in the Royal Yacht Gothic, on the end of a line from our helicopter. Her response "Thank you for a fine Royal Forgery."  Read the article.

Why is champagne used to launch ships, and how long has this been going on?

 Read the article.

Beneath The Southern Cross

In wartime, and during troubled times in the Northern Hemisphere, many a Royal Australian Navy ship and their crews have left home to serve north of the equator.

After a long stint away, at last their ship is steering a southerly course, it crosses the equator. When the sun sets, and dusk falls, the stars will slowly become visible, the sailors will look for two old friends, two of the brightest stars to be seen in the heavens above.

 Read the article.

U S Cruiser, USS Phoenix escapes Pearl Harbor attack to be sunk in the Falklands War, as the Argentinian Cruiser, General Belgrano.

This Cruiser had been the United States Navy's Phoenix, at the time of the Japanese sneak attack on Pearl Harbor on the 7th. of December 1941, she was alongside, but managed to get underway, and exit the harbour undamaged. Read the article.

Memorial plaque for HMAS Shropshire at the Australian War Memorial. Canberra.

In the gardens surrounding the Australian War Memorial, situated in our National Capital, Canberra, are a number of brass plaques that record the history of a number of the Royal Australian Navy’s war time warships. Amongst them, sitting at the base of a growing tree, is one to mark the County Class Cruiser, HMAS Shropshire.  Read the article.

HMAS Shropshire's crew, taken in Lingayen Gulf, Northern Luzon, the Philippines

 Read the article.

HMAS Australia to the rescue

Although this rescue took place almost sixty two years ago, I can still visualise the joy on the faces of those we rescued, and remember the anger and sadness we all experienced at having to leave the remaining four airmen to face a certain death. Read the article.

HMAS Australia in the Atlantic

Sunday the 9th. of February dawned, it happens to be my 19th. birthday, still at sea, and a long long way from home.  Finally, we shepherd our segment of the convoy into Durban harbour, its the 16th. of February, our long journey, taking 5 weeks, is over, all the ships that commenced this voyage have arrived safely at their destination, our job is done. Read the article.

Cunard Liner Queen Mary runs down HMS Curacoa

Queen Mary, some twenty times the size of Curacoa and steaming at 28.5 knots sliced the Cruiser neatly in two. She continued on her zig zag leg, whilst the two halves, had an ever widening gap of the North Atlantic growing between them. Read the article.

Cunard Liner Queen Mary runs down HMS Curacoa

Queen Mary, some twenty times the size of Curacoa and steaming at 28.5 knots sliced the Cruiser neatly in two. She continued on her zig zag leg, whilst the two halves, had an ever widening gap of the North Atlantic growing between them. Read the article.

Capturing the Enigma Machine

Baker-Cresswell, in a split second decision, stopped his Destroyer from ramming this U-Boat, and most likely sinking her. On his bridge, he recalled in his mind attending a Staff College lecture about the capture of ciphers in 1914, from a stricken German Naval vessel. Read the article.

The Sinking of British Battleship, HMS Royal Oak, at Scapa Flow, by German Submarine, U-47

Scapa Flow Chart, sinking of Royal Oak - click to read the articleJust after going to war against Britain in September 1939, the German U-Boat Commander, Admiral Donitz, was keen to upset both the Royal Navy, and her First Lord of the Admiralty, Winston Churchill, by breaching the defences of Scapa Flow and sinking a major Naval Vessel.

Donitz studied the reconnaissance photographs, and decided that a 50 foot gap existed between the blockships which had been sunk in the northern end of the most eastern entrance in Kirk Sound, and he thought that a surfaced Submarine could penetrate this narrow access at the time of slack water. But, a night attack would be mandatory.

 Read the article.

German Bombers rain bombs down  on Liverpool. A close run thing for HMAS Australia, December 1940

During our time in dock, Liverpool was subjected to severe German bombing raids over several nights in November / December. Read the article.

Scapa Flow and its wrecks - my article in another web site.

 Read the article.

The Scuttling of the German High Seas Fleet at Scapa Flow on the 21st of June 1919

Most of the German High Seas Fleet was to survive WW1 intact, under the Peace Plan, this fleet was sailed into internment at the British Home Fleet Base at Scapa Flow. On the 21st of June 1919, Rear Admiral Ludwig von Reuter, who was in command, gave the order to SCUTTLE them. Read the article.

The execution of Japanese Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, carried out on the 18th. of April 1943

[Image]The American force's arrival over Bouganville had been timed to perfection, probably more good luck than good planning, they sighted the Japanese group, but it contained two Betty bombers, and not just one as expected. Thus, to ensure that the Japanese Admiral was disposed of, both bombers would have to be destroyed. Both Lamphier and Barber were later to claim they were the one to shoot down the Betty with Admiral Yamamoto onboard. Read the article.

Official party entering Parliament House Canberra for the Governor General to open the Australian Parliament in 1952

 Read the article.

Links to other interesting web sites

 Read the article.

The invitation for friends to help celebrate my 80th birthday on Saturday the 9th. of February 2002

 Read the article.

Certificate of Clearance for Titanic from Queenstown, Ireland

 Read the article.

This is a copy of the surrender document signed in Tokyo Bay aboard the USS Missouri

This is a copy of the surrender document signed in Tokyo Bay aboard the  USS Missouri on September 2 1945.  At that time I was serving in HMAS Shropshire, and we were present in Tokyo Bay, as part of the occupation force in Japan. Read the article.

The letter telling me I was awarded A Queen Elizabeth Coronation Medal

 Read the article.

What does the word Knot mean when used by the world's Navies?

 Read the article.

Sunset on the Zambesi River, Zimbabwe

Taken on the evening of the 14th. of July 1994 on a Sunset Cruise on the Zambesi River in Zimbabwe, when I met my future wife, Denise Read the article.

Book Review - Longitude by Dava Sobel

"The true story of a lone genius who solved the greatest scientific problem of his time."  Read the article.

Photo exhibit - Coral Sea

A newspaper article and photo exhibit generate some interest for the Coral Sea Photographic Exhibition at the Naval Memorial Centre at the English Speaking Union, 148 Toorak Rd. West, South Yarra May 6 - 8, 2002. Read the article.

"Operation Menace." September 23, 24, 25, 1940. HMAS Australia and the debacle at Dakar with General Charles de Gaulle

This operation must be judged a complete failure on our part, a battleship badly damaged and put out of action for a considerable time when every Fleet unit was desperately needed to support the Naval war, and the strong possibility of a German invasion of England. Three cruisers and one destroyer all hit by enemy shells, plus Fleet Airarm and our Walrus aircraft shot down. Read the article.

Gibraltar, after nearly 300 years of British control, is it going back to Spanish ownership?

For many years Spain has considered Gibraltar to be a seething boil located on its southern rump, (of course Northern Ireland is in a similar mode for the Eire Republic)and has long agitated for its return and integration with the mainland. Read the article.

International Date Line

The International Date Line is the imaginary line on the Earth that separates two consecutive calendars.  That, the  date in the Eastern hemisphere, to the left of the line, is always one day ahead of the date in the western hemisphere.  It has been recognized as a matter of convenience and has no force in international law. Read the article.

Japanese Midget Submarines Attack Sydney Harbour on the night of May31/June 1, 1942

Midget sub - click to read the articleOn May the 11th. 1942, the Japanese 8th Squadron Submarines, I-22, I-27, and I-28, having been involved in the Coral Sea operation were ordered to Truk to embark Midget Submarines, it was planned to attack Naval targets at either Suva or Sydney. Read the article.

Commander A. Covey-Crump - A collection of Naval Slang

Some Naval slang: Nelson's Button, Rabbits,  Doggy, and more. Read the article.

The Nelson Years of 1793-1805

This period covers the fortunes of Horatio Nelson at Toulon, at Naples, where he first met Lady Emma Hamilton in 1793. Nelson was a unique Naval Officer and Commander of Fleets, it is unlikely we will ever witness such an individual again.  Note from 22 October 2002: "Naval hero's artifacts net millions," Read the article.

Anzac Cove, Gallipoli Turkey, for Anzac Day Ceremony 1998

Anzac Cove - click to read the articleTo make this pilgrimage, was both a wonderful and memorable experience for both Denise and myself. At different times whilst visiting the many cemeteries, we did shed quiet tears. One is shattered by the young ages of so many of these original Anzacs, only 15, 16, 17, the youngest but 14, cut down before they had time to become men, and really commence their lives.  Also a brief about Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the First President of the Republic of Turkey. Read the article.

The Loss of USS Indianapolis, gone missing, but not missed

Indianapolis, the United States Cruiser, under the command of Captain Charles McVay USN, changed world history, and was instrumental in bringing the war in the Pacific against Japan to its conclusion.  It resulted in an unprecedented court martial that ruined McVay and his Naval career. Read the article.

The Role of the Submarine in World War 2

Which country controlled the most efficient Submarine Fleet during this global conflict? Read the article.

The escape of the German battlecruiser, Goeben, and the light cruiser, Breslau, in 1914

The escape of Goeben and Breslau in 1914 from the Royal Navy, who failed to bottle them up in the Mediterranean, allowing them to penetrate the Dardanelles, was a defining moment in both Naval and World History. Read the article.

The Role of Western Approaches Command in the Battle of the Atlantic

One of the crucial decisions made during the Battle of the Atlantic, was to relocate the Western Approaches Command on the 7th. of February, 1941, from Plymouth to Liverpool. Read the article.

I-52 - Japan's Golden Submarine

The lure of gold from I-52, has left behind a trail of unpaid bills, and investors who have lost their money. Read the article.

Able Seaman Nuisance

NuisanceA special dog "Nuisance" at Simonstown Naval Depot in South Africa was granted the rate of Able Seaman, and taken on the books of HMS Africander.  Read the article.

Blockade Runner Ramses

Our sharp lookout had located Ramses - quick identification sealed her fate, the combination of scuttling charges and accurate Allied gun fire prevented a valuable cargo reaching Germany, ten Norwegians were freed to fight again, and for seventy-eight Germans the war had ended. Read the article.

AE 1, AE 2, and J Class Submarines in The Royal Australian Navy

AE Class Submarines - click to read the article.Long may we operate an efficient flotilla of submarines in the Royal Australian Navy. The RAN'S first Submarines were AE1 and AE2, both boats had arrived in Sydney on Sunday the 24th. of May 1914. At 0600 (6AM) they had passed through the Heads to proceed up the harbour to dock at Garden Island.


 Read the article.

Kamikaze Attack

In January 1945, I was serving as a Lieutenant RAN, in the 8 inch gunned heavy cruiser HMAS Shropshire, and we were part of the bombardment force to be used to soften up the landing beaches where US troops were to storm ashore on January 6th of that month. We had been subjected to Kamikaze attacks from Japanese aircraft, and had some close calls, but had shot down several of our attackers. Read the article.

Searching for the USS Canberra's ship's bell and visiting Washington

Ships Bell CanberraAfter my Canberra was sunk in 1942, the USN named a heavy cruiser USS Canberra in 1943, in 1967 when the ship came to Melbourne, the ship's bell was struck from the mainmast and used as the font to christen my then, 6 year old son Raymond Edwin Gregory, Lady Dixon who launched the ship back in 1943 and the ship's Captain Edwin Rosenberg USN became his God Mother and God Father. Read the article.

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Marauders of the Sea WW 1
Marauders of the Sea WW 2
Confederate Armed Raiders of the American Civil
Under Water Warfare
Enemy Submarine Activity off the Australian Coast in WW2
H.M.A.S. Canberra and the Battle of Savo Island
Interview with Australians at War Film Archives
Index to Naval Battles on AHOY
Battle of the Atlantic. September 1939 - May 1945. Index to Ahoy Articles
Naval Battles in the Solomon Islands over August / November 1942 turn the tide of the Pacific War
Count Felix von Luckner: Index of Ahoy's articles and correspondence
HMS Voltaire Pages
The Athenia Pages
The Battle For Convoy ONS 5. 26th.April - 6th. May 1943
Adolf Hitler and his WW2 Field Marshals
Jervis Year. The Class of 1936. Royal Australian Naval College
Passport to the World over 64 years. Pages from my Travel Diary
Early Explorations of Australia
Index to Submarine articles
Index to Naval Operations articles
Gentlemen Cordite: Lieutenant Commander Warwick Bracegirdle, RAN

Best way to reach me is via e-mail. I answer all queries.

Latest updates

* 23 July 2016 - Last Post:

* 13 November 2015 - MAC GREGORY’S VISION TO BE UNVEILED Ceremony will commence at 10.00am on Friday 27 November 2015:

* 08 November 2015 - Letters: Marine Phoenix I too sailed on her in C May 1947 from Sydney to San Francisco

* 11 July 2015 - Letters: My great-uncle, John Cotton, was an able seaman on ss Demeterton which was intercepted and sunk by SMS Moewe in March 1917

* 08 July 2015 - I am honoured to have known you a little Mac:

* 04 July 2015 - PLUTO. (Pipe line under the ocean.):

* 15 June 2015 - Condolences from a baby Bracegirdle:

* 01 June 2015 - Condolences - Pattie Wright:

* 24 April 2015 - Letters: Harry Irwin Rouse served in HMAS Canberra

* 20 April 2015 - Letters: von please I am writing a monograph

* 20 April 2015 - Letters: Gerald Hutchinson, oldest living survivor of SS Athenia?

* 20 April 2015 - The Athenia Remembered: September 3, 1939-September 3, 2004 by Michael Poirier:

* 27 January 2015 - Mac Was My Inspiration - Bruce M. Petty New Zealand:

* 25 January 2015 - Index to Tributes and Remembrances in memory of Mackenzie J Gregory
(9 February 1922 - 27 August 2014):

* 25 January 2015 - Tributes and Remembrances  - Mac Gregory Mackenzie J. Gregory
(9 February 1922 - 27 August 2014):



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