Grandfather was lost at sea from Empire Whale in 1943, sunk by U-662

Dear Mr Gregory,

I hope you dont mind me emailing you, but i am trying to find info of a ship called the Empire Whale, this ship was sunk by U-662 in 1943, would you have any info of this event happening, I do now have a picture of the Empire Whale has took me 4 yrs to track down,

Any info or pictures i would be very grateful of the U-662.


Barbara Powell


I do not mind at all about you E-Mailing me, and I am pleased to help if possible.

Here are some details:

EMPIRE WHALE was a 6,049 gross ton cargo steamer, built 1919 by Federal Shipbuilding Co, Kearney, NJ (Yard No.24)as the WINONA COUNTY for the U.S. Shipping Board, Newark, N.J..

Length 395.5ft x beam 55ft x depth 31.4ft, turbine engines by Midwest Engineering Co, Indianapolis, double reduction geared to single screw shaft, speed 11 knots. Registered with the U.S. Official No.218851.

1937 owners restyled U.S. Maritime Commission. 1941 sold to Ministry of War Transport, London, re-registered Off. No.168194, managed by Donaldson Bros & Black Ltd.

Torpedoed and sunk by U.662 (Muller) in the Atlantic 425 miles NW from Cape Finisterre in position 46.44N 16.38W while on voyage Pepel to Methil and the Tyne via Freetown with 3 RAF personnel and a cargo of 7,870 tons of iron ore, part of convoy SL 126 comprising 36 ships.

The Master, Capt. J. T. Davitt, 41 crew, 4 gunners and 1 RAF personnel were lost. 7 crew, 1 gunner
and 2 RAF personnel were rescued by HMS SPEY and landed at Londonderry. Four ships from this convoy were sunk on 29th-30th Mar.1943 including EMPIRE BOWMAN, NAGARA, OCEAN VICEROY and UMARIA.

I will separately mail you a photo of Empire Whale and details of U-662, but no photo of the U-Boat was I able to find.

Hope this helps you.

Best wishes,

Mac. Gregory.

Empire Whale sunk by U-662, 1943


Dear Mr Gregory,

Thank you for getting back in touch with me so quickly, The reason I am interested in the Whale is my grandfahter was lost at sea from her in 1943, and to find info of the Empire Whale and the U-662 concerning their past history together, it just gives me some insight of the history of it, once again thank you for getting back in touch with  me.

Barbara Powell

Hello Mac,

I was looking at your site and thought you might like the address of a site that i was looking at.

It is www.newportsdead.bravehost.com i noticed a couple of entries from the ss empire whale and thought that you might be interested one being the name J Doyle. I was only looking because it is a new site and i remember my old mum saying about Jim Doyle who died in  Empire whale.

I hope you find it interesting, and perhaps you could let me know.

all the best
Peter Toy ex RN


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