HMS Sobieski in wartime service
|Owner||Gdynia-America Line – GAL|
|Port of registry||1950–1975: Odessa, Soviet Union|
|Route||South America service|
|Builder||Swan, Hunter and Wigham Richardson, Wallsend.|
|Launched||25 August 1938|
|Completed||15 June 1939|
|Maiden voyage||15 June 1939|
|Out of service||1939 taken up as troopship|
|Fate||1975 scrapped at La Spezia|
|Length||155.85 m (511 ft 4 in)|
|Beam||20.41 m (67 ft 0 in)|
|Draft||8.30 m (27 ft 3 in)|
|Installed power||Engines by J. G. Kincaid & Co, Greenock|
|Capacity||44 first-class, 250 third-class and 850 emigrants|
MS Sobieski was a Polish passenger ship launched in 1939. It was constructed for the South American service of the Gdynia-America Line – GAL to replace the aging SS Kościuszko and SS Pulaski. She was named in honour of the Polish king Jan III Sobieski. The MS Sobieski was to be a sister ship to the MS Chrobry.
The Sobieski only managed one journey before the war, arriving in Buenos Aires on the 10th of July 1939.
The ship was used as a troopship in the Allied evacuation of western France in 1940 (Operation Aerial), where she was one of the last ships to leave St Jean de Luz during the final evacuation of Polish troops from France, and in the Battle of Dakar. During Operation Streamline Jane, the invasion of Madagascar, in May, 1942, the M.S. Sobieski was the flag ship.
At the end of the war she repatriated the remnants of that division's Cambridgeshire Regiment that had survived captivity at the hands of the Japanese in Malaya and Thailand. She also returned former Changi prisoners of war (POWs) from Singapore, sailing via Cape Town and docking at Liverpool during a dockworkers' strike. Disgusted, dismayed ex-POWs had to unload their own baggage, such as it was.
The vessel was sold to Russia in 1950 and renamed the MS Gruziya and scrapped in Italy in 1975.
- "Ship Descriptions - S". Archived from the original on 9 June 2010. Retrieved 19 December 2010.
- "Swan, Hunter and Wigham Richardson". Gracesguide.co.uk. Retrieved 10 July 2015.
- "Passenger list for MS Chrobry". Retrieved 14 September 2020.
- "The History Of The Gdynia America Shipping Lines Co. Ltd". Retrieved 11 September 2020.
- "Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21". Retrieved 16 September 2020.