Tugboat pulling the SS Orduna to sea
|Owner:||Pacific Steam Navigation Company|
Royal Mail Steam Packet Company,
Pacific Steam Navigation Company
|Port of registry:||Liverpool, United Kingdom|
|Route:||North Atlantic service|
|Builder:||Harland and Wolff yards in Belfast|
|Launched:||2 October 1913|
|Maiden voyage:||19 February 1914|
|Out of service:||November, 1950|
|Fate:||Scrapped, 1951, in Dalmuir, Scotland.|
|Class & type:||Ocean liner|
|Length:||167.7 m (550 ft)|
|Beam:||25.5 m (67 ft)|
SS Orduna was an ocean liner built in 1913-14 by Harland & Wolff in Belfast for the Pacific Steam Navigation Company. After two voyages she was chartered to Cunard Line. In 1921 she went to the Royal Mail Steam Packet Company, then being resold to the PSNCo in 1926. Her sister ships were the RMSP Orbita and SS Orca.
First World War
In January 1915 Orduna rescued the Russian crew of the sailing ship Loch Torridon, which had sprung a leak while transporting timber off the west coast of Ireland. Later in 1915, en route for New York, Orduna was targeted by a U-boat. The torpedo, which was spotted by Captain Hughes-Parry, failed to hit the ship, which arrived safely.
Between the wars
In April 1923 she was involved in another rescue, transporting the crew of the barquentine Clitha, which had been abandoned and set on fire, to England after they had been rescued by the schooner Jean Campbell.
In 1925, Dean James E. Lough of the Extra-Mural Division of the New York University chartered Orduna for the transport of 213 students to France, with lectures taking place on board.
In 1938 the Orduna was used for the third and final 'Peace Cruise', carrying 460 Scouters and Guiders, including Robert and Olave Baden-Powell, and their daughter Heather, on a cruise to Iceland, Norway, Denmark and Belgium. Orduna left Liverpool on 8 August, returning on 25 August via Dover.
Robert Baden-Powell was too ill to leave the ship during the voyage, but parties of local Scouts visited him on the ship at most of the stops, while the Scouters and Guiders on the ship took the opportunity to tour local landmarks and attend receptions. During the stop at Reykjavík on Thursday, 11 August, during which Orduna moored beside the German cruiser Emden, a party from the Scouts of Iceland brought some rock on board so that Baden-Powell could still 'set foot in Iceland'. The Orduna called at Trondheim, Norway, on 15 August, Copenhagen, Denmark on 18 August, and Belgium on Sunday 21 August, before returning to England. In September 1938 she was at Nassau, Bahamas and Kingston Jamaica
Second World War
On 12 August 1940, she sailed from Liverpool arriving Nassau 30 August, with a privately organised party of 16 children from Belmont Preparatory school, Hassocks Sussex. It was part of a wider Government children's evacuation programme Children's Overseas Reception Board during World War II. When the prospect of imminent invasion threatened Britain.
With the need for military transport in the Second World War, in 1941 she was put into service by the British government as a troopship. Another task during the Second World War was that of an evacuation transport. On 21 September 1945 she sailed from Rangoon with British former Far East Prisoners of War on board, arriving in Liverpool on 19 October 1945. Military transport continued until 1949.
Post-Second World War
- postcard of sister ship, RMSP Orbita
- Passenger lists and Emigrant ships from Norway-Heritage
- The "LOCH TORRIDON"
- 175 Facts about NYU
- "Heather". The World Chief Guide website. Retrieved 20 May 2009.
- Eileen K. Wade. "27 Years with Baden-Powell". Retrieved 20 May 2009.
- David Horry postmark 26 September 1938
- A History of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee 1929-1939
- Gordon Thomas and Max Morgan Witts, Voyage of the Damned (New York: Stein and Day, 1974), p. 37.
- The Tragedy of the S.S. St. Louis
- HANSARD 1803–2005 → 1940s → 1947 → March 1947 → 10 March 1947 → Written Answers (Commons) → BRITISH ARMY
- British Armed Forces & National Service