New book: Athenia Torpedoed

October 18, 2012


A number of years ago I had written an article on the Athenia which you kindly put on your site. ("Interviews with Athenia survivors for an article honoring the 65th anniversary" and "The Athenia Remembered: September 3, 1939-September 3, 2004 by Michael Poirier") There is a new book on the subject by Francis Carroll. I have not read it yet. Hopefully it's good. I wonder if he referenced the site.

Mike Poirier


Thank you. Nice to hear from you.

The new book  is named Athenia Torpedoed. (Athenia Torpedoed: The U-boat Attack That Ignited the Battle of the Atlantic by Francis M. Carroll )

I would query his number lost at 112, my research lists that number as 93, their names all printed in the London Times and copied to AHOY.

Just hours after World War II was declared, Germany struck its first blow, firing without warning on the passenger liner Athenia. The British ship was loaded with Americans, Canadians, and Europeans attempting to cross the Atlantic before the outbreak of war. As the ship sank, 1,306 were rescued but 112 people were lost, including thirty Americans. This account of the disaster, based on new research, tells a dramatic story of tragedy and triumph, as historian Francis Carroll chronicles the survivors’ experiences and explains how the incident shaped policy in the U.S., UK, and Canada. For Britain, it was seen as a violation of international law and convoys were sent to protect shipping. In Canada, Athenia’s sinking rallied support to go to war. In the United States, it exposed Germany as a serious threat and changed public opinion enough to allow the country to sell munitions and supplies to Britain and France. - Amazon.com

I never cease to be amazed at the continued interest in the sinking of Athenia after all these years.

Hardly a week goes by without some one writing to me about her loss, admitedly she was the first casualty at sea on the very first day of WW2.

I must order a copy of this latest work about Athenia.

Best regards,

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