SS St. Margaret sunk by U-66/Markworth; survivors rescued by USS Hobson, Capt. made POW in Germany, 3 KIA

S.S. ST. MARGARET, Attack & Survivor’s Narrative

By Eric T. Wiberg, Esq. www.uboatsbermuda.blogspot.com, September, 2014


S.S. St. Margaret before World War II.

Photo Source: Mike Kemble, http://www.39-45war.com/st%20margaret.html, from an essay by Capt. David Sidney Davies of the St. Margaret that appeared in the “Reef Knot,” the publication of the Saint Line.

The steamship Saint Margaret (hereinafter St. Margaret) was built by the yard of Joseph L. Thompson & Sons, of Sunderland, England. Originally named the Hellenic for a year, she then briefly became the Nailsea Belle until 1937. Thereafter the ship was named St. Margaret and owned and operated by the South American Saint Line Limited, a division of B&S Shipping, of Cardiff, Wales. The firm was also known simply as the “Saint Line.”

The St. Margaret was 4,312 gross tons and capable of carrying 7,910 deadweight tons of cargo. Her length overall was 414.3 feet, the beam was 56 feet, and her depth 23.4 feet. Her steam engine propelled the ship at 10 knots.

The St. Margaret had visited Bermuda at least once during World War II, starting on September 3rd, 1940. At the end of August that year the Canadian warship HMCS Prince David (F89) came upon the St. Margaret between Bermuda and the Caribbean. The steam ship was beset with engine trouble and a potential sitting target for U-boats. According to Wikipedia.org,

“When Prince David closed, the vessel’s Master asked for the Canadian’s Engineer Officer to come over to have a look, which he did, and reported he did not believe the St. Margaret could make it. Bermuda was nearest land, 800 miles (1,300 km) west. Expecting that either U-boat or surface raider would sink her, if she did not founder first, Captain Adams decided to intervene, and took the merchantman in tow. The St. Margaret was brought into Bermuda safely on 3 September.” It is not known how long the St. Margaret stayed in Bermuda, but some of her officers and crew were destined to return to that lovely isle under similar circumstances.

For details of the St. Margaret’s final voyage readers are indebted to both the survivor’s statements of Chief Officer George Hamilton on file in the Admiralty Shipping Casualties Section, Trade Division at The National Archives in Kew, London (1943), as well as Captain D. S. Davies’ account of events as published in an article by him in the “Reef Knot,” the in-house magazine of the Saint Line from 1948.

George Hamilton’s account relates how the St. Margaret loaded 6,000 tons of general cargo in Liverpool. The cargo was consigned to Lamport & Holt Lines in ports which included Montevideo, Uruguay and Buenos Aires, Argentina. Captain Davies elaborates that the cargo consisted of machinery, whisky, stout, textiles, military stores for the Falklands Islands and Yardley’s products. There were also 90 bags of mail stowed between decks in the number five hold, aft. A single bag of special mail was kept in the Confidential Book Box in the bridge for emergency disposal in the event of Axis attack. The voyage would require a stop for more coal for bunkers, which was planned for Pernambuco, Brazil.

Among the passengers aboard the St. Margaret were three women. These included “a German mother and daughter who had escaped from Germany just before the ward and now [were] on their way to join the father in Buenos Aires.” From the passenger list this must have been Octave Osten and her daughter Ruch Schaeffear and son-in-law Tony Schaeffear. Matron Francis Gowans was matron-in-charge of Port Stanley, Falkands Islands’ hospital when HMS Exeter arrived from the Battle of the River Plate in September 1939. Gowans was returning from purchasing a trousseau in England and planned to be married after the voyage.

The four other passengers consisted, in the words of Captain Davies, of “an estate manager from the Falklands, two Belgians and a Hungarian Jew.” Overall there were 50 persons on board the St. Margaret, including the seven passengers, five naval gunners and 38 merchant marine officers and crew. The five gunners operated a single four-inch gun, a 12-pound gun, two Oerlikons, two twin Marlin machine guns, and 4 PAC rocket and kite apparatus.

The St. Margaret left Liverpool in Convoy ON 165 at 8:00 am local time on Tuesday the 2nd of February 1943 in position number 83. There were 39 merchant ships in this convoy, escorted by 16 naval vessels. It was bound for New York (where it arrived Monday 1st March), however the St. Margaret and other ships dispersed from the convoy on Friday the 19th of February, over two weeks later.

On Friday the 5th of February the weather worsened considerably and for the next two weeks the St. Margaret and the other ships in the convoy endured terrible weather for which the winter in the North Atlantic is infamous. Despite a succession of “severe gales” the ships struggled to remain in formation. Ships – particularly those sailing light or in ballast – signaled “not under command” or essentially out of control on either side of the St. Margaret. The ships with cargoes labored under decks awash with ocean swells. According to Captain Davies, “The crews quarters and passenger accommodation were flooded for days. The more delicate sex had been granted the use of part of the Master’s accommodation, the others sleeping in the lounge.”

According to Chief Officer Hamilton, two of the four emergency rafts were washed away during the storms. Captain Davies opted to keep the four lifeboats swung inwards, close to the superstructure, rather than outboard, closer to the ocean where they might be damaged by the seas.

At 9:00 am on Friday the 19th the ship was ordered to proceed independently of the convoy and set off due southwards. Each day the weather improved. On Thursday the 25th of February the British Admiralty warned the ship via radio that there was an enemy submarine operating about 345 miles to their southeast. At 9:00 pm on the following day another message was received, however it was not deciphered using the merchant signals book until some hours later. It advised that if the ship was north of a certain point, it was to proceed directly for Saint Thomas in the British Virgin Islands, some 1,300 nautical miles to the southwest. If they were south of the given position the ship was to ignore the message.

The message was deciphered at 4:20 am ship’s time on Saturday the 27th of February. Oddly, although the St Margaret was 2,250 nautical miles from Pernambuco, Hamilton writes that “…we were making for Pernambuco to refuel, and we had insufficient fuel to reach St. Thomas. The Captain therefore decided to carry on the course to make Pernambuco,” on the northeastern shoulder of Brazil, in the South Atlantic.

Five hours later, at 9:42 am on Saturday the 27th, the ship was 1,145 nautical miles southeast of Bermuda, 1,175 miles northeast of Antigua, 1,000 miles southwest from the nearest of the Azores Islands, and 1,350 miles west southwest of the Canaries Islands. The ship was essentially in the middle of the Sargasso Sea, in the central North Atlantic. St. Margaret was making nine and a half knots heading 180 degrees south. The wind was from the east at about 12 knots, the sea was moderate with heavy swell from the southeast. Visibility was good, the atmosphere was described as “fine and clear” despite the occasional clouds.

Captain Davies noted that the passengers were very cheerful, given the improving conditions. He notes that “At breakfast, passengers discussed how they were going to take their trunks out on deck to dry the contents, how they would be sunbathing, etc. There was quite an atmosphere of cheerfulness and some relief on faces.” The five naval gunners were cleaning their equipment. The Chief Engineer, John Bradford Meadley, aged 34, who was also a close friend of Captain Davies, went down to the engine room.


Captain David Sidney Davies, Master of the St. Margaret at the time of her sinking by U-66 in March, 1943.

Photo source: Mike Kemble’s site, http://www.39-45war.com/st%20margaret.html

While waiting for the Chief Engineer to return for an inspection of damage caused by the storm Captain Davies sought out Chief Officer Hamilton, who he found on the after deck on the port side. At 9:42 am a torpedo slammed into the engine room on the port side amidships. It caused a “terrific explosion” in the words of Captain Davies, “followed by huge columns of black smoke, steam, water and oil combined, several hundred feet high.” According to Hamilton, an apprentice had seen the torpedo streaking towards them six points off the bow, however he thought it was a porpoise and did not raise an alarm.

Hamilton explained the immediately the engine room was flooded to the engine tops and as a result they were stopped. The wireless system was wrecked and two of the port lifeboats were damaged. Since the ship started to settle Captain Davies ordered abandon ship and the two lifeboats on the starboard side: numbers one and three – were lowered. The first (number three) had 25 people including all passengers except one of the Belgian men, the gunners and the three women.
The other starboard boat (number one) was lowered with seven to eight crew-members. Captain Davies opted to remain on board with officers and crew to get off the remaining boats and rafts.

Davies made a head count and found that three of his men were missing: George Brady, a 21-year-old Fireman, Meadley the Chief Engineer and Patrick Edward Loughran, a 24-year-old Donkeyman.
Davies struggled through 18 inches of incoming water to make the ship’s wheelhouse to destroy codes and special mail, and was dismayed to find they had not been thrown overboard. They were sunk by the Third Officer after some colorful language from the Captain. When Davies went to his cabin for a life jacket he found one of the Belgian passengers there. He was crying, which for whatever reason made Davies laugh. The Belgian was looking for a life jacket, so Davies sent him on deck with his own jacket, grabbed a Welsh bible, and went to look for the three missing engine room staff.

By now several minutes had elapsed and it was between 9:45 and 9:50 am. Though St. Margaret was on an even keel and “there appeared no immediate danger of her sinking,” Davies correctly surmised that his hidden adversary would strike with another torpedo before long. There were fewer than a dozen men now left on the ship, including the Master, Mate, Second Cook, Third Officer, four sailors and two firemen. They remained calm and cooperative. Chief Officer Hamilton was “not very well” and one of the lifeboats came under the stern to retrieve him after he slid down a rope to it.

The men on board launched the smaller port-side lifeboat but it capsized and was no use. Davies ordered the Third Officer to free the larger port-side boat and went to the engine space to try to find his friend Meadley and the two others. He found the engine room flooded to the height of the surrounding sea. Through the debris he was unable to espy any injured survivors. He could not find any signs of life – or bodies – in the accommodation spaces either. While going forward he found the British nautical ensign lying on deck and hoisted it two thirds of the way, where it jammed. He rationalized that “It struck me that the ‘St. Margaret’ should go down with her flag flying.”

By the time Davies made it aft the larger port-side lifeboat was hanging halfway to the water. He looked on last time for his “very good friend” Meadley and then followed the calls of his shipmates into the boat by sliding down a life-line. He writes that “It was with a very deep feeling of regret and almost guilt, that I left the ‘St. Margaret.’ The impression came over me that I was deserting her in her time of trial. …[she] appeared very proud and defiant, although mortally injured.” As this lifeboat pulled away from the ship Davies had the men take off their hats and he “committed our unfortunate shipmates, whom we were leaving behind, to God’s care and mercy.”


Another view of S.S. St. Margaret, clearly showing the large starboard lifeboat which was the survivor’s salvation as well as the large ventilators which Hamilton described at her sinking. 

Photo Source: http://www.39-45war.com/st%20margaret.html

Chief Mate Hamilton was meanwhile juggling men and provisions between the other three lifeboats and two rafts. The planks on number one boat, in which seven or eight crew had gotten away initially, were split at the bilge and the boat had to be cast adrift. The number four lifeboat became waterlogged and so provisions were moved from it to a raft and it, also was set adrift.

An hour and three minutes after the first torpedo struck, Markworth sent a second torpedo into the side of the St. Margaret at 10:45 am. At the time the boats were roughly 1,200 feet away. In the words of Hamilton the torpedo struck near the number three hold on the port side and “This was a very violent explosion, which caused cascades of water to pour through the ventilators, the ventilator covers being blown off. We did not see a flash or flame.” The St. Margaret ultimately sank bow first with a port list at 10:55 am – ten minutes after the second torpedo. The stern was the last to submerge.

Meanwhile the boat that Captain Davies was in was filled so much that the men in it were sitting in water. They were still 600 feet from the better lifeboat when the second torpedo struck. As the ship sank Davies had all the people in both boats bare their heads and Davies gave a talk commending the dead to the deep and asking for asking for guidance to those in the boats. Davies and the men in his boat went aboard the large starboard lifeboat, which had 25 in it originally, and now had roughly 35.

Shortly after the St. Margaret sank, and with it any threat of counter-attack, Markworth took U-66 to the surface and approached the people in the boats. Davies saw the periscope before the sub emerged. Apparently Markworth was upset, as Davies relates “When a short distance away, the Commander started howling at us to come alongside. I saw ‘howling’ as that is the only way to describe it. He was exactly as if mad.” The men on the U-boat covered the survivors with “many guns of different caliber” the whole time they interacted.

Kapitänluetnant Friedrich Markworth of the U-66 which sank the St. Margaret in March, 1943.

Markworth first called the Third Officer aboard U-66, as he was wearing a badged cap. Then Captain Davies was asked for and went aboard the submarine. He relates that “The Commander spoke reasonably good English and had by now calmed down a little. He apologized for having to leave the ladies in the boats, and said that I would be going with him to Germany.” Hamilton said that the Second and not Third Officer was taken on board the sub.

The submarine then approached Hamilton’s boat and took him aboard for questioning. After being asked the destination and cargo and photographed extensively he was released. He observed a the image of German Swastika with a wolf through it on the conning tower (in fact it was a “growling lion’s head inside a circle” or black diamond according to Uboat.net). Ultimately everyone was released back to the boats except Captain Davies, who was taken Prisoner of War. That left 46 survivors on the boats: 50 minus the three killed and the captured captain. The nearest land, Bermuda, was over 1,000 miles away.

Since interactions between German submariners and Allied survivors were brief on the rare occasions when the occurred at all, it is worthwhile to recount Hamilton’s impressions of U-66 and its crew and how the Allies were treated:

“The commander was tall, lean, dressed in a rather shabby khaki uniform, and wore a red beard. He seemed very fit. I noticed that he spoke poor English. The crew all worse long khaki trousers, in an equally shabby state of repair. The Commander took our boats wireless transmitting set from the lifeboat, together with a few tins of provisions from my raft. Whilst I was in the conning tower, a Lieutenant asked survivors on the raft for some cigarettes, for which he gave them in exchange some cigarettes of a very inferior quality, of German manufacture. The submarine then steamed away on the surface.
At 2:00 pm local time, roughly three hours after the St. Margaret sank, Hamilton organized the single seaworthy lifeboat and took two of the life rafts under tow. They set course for St. Thomas, roughly 1,300 nautical miles to the southwest. For fresh water they had 35 gallons of fresh water as well as another 30-gallon tank salvaged from the damaged lifeboat. Additionally each raft had a 10 gallon tank of water. As well as smoke floats, rockets and flares the lifeboat had a red sail and protective suits which were yellow. Given that Hamilton estimated it would take them a month and a half to reach land, each person was rationed to 1.5 ounces of water, 3 tablets of Horlicks and two spoons of pemmican, or meat paste.

At first there were 27 men and women in the lifeboat, ten in one raft and nine in the other raft. At 3:00 am on Sunday the 28thboth rafts were separated from the boat when the rope connecting them parted. Hamilton waited a few hours until daybreak to re-connect them, given his concern for damaging the craft in a heavy swell (a raft had already collided with the boat’s rudder). At 5:30 am the craft were reconnected and the lifeboat set sail. The prospect of the boat continuing without the 19 people in the raft was mooted and the majority did not favor it and it was “shelved.”

That same day one of the rafts began to break up. The men were transferred to the lifeboat, making it very crowded. Ten men remained on the other raft. At 5:00 am the following day (Monday the first of March), some of the men informed Hamilton that they had seen an airplane. Though the Chief Officer didn’t see the plane himself, they fired three smoke flares, three rockets and some red flares. Hamilton reckoned that the men were seeing things, however at 7:00 am on Tuesday the second of March they spotted another plane, this time far to the southeast. Ten minutes later a second plane was visible. Hamilton let off distress signals but by 7:25 both planes were out of sight without apparently seeing the boat and raft.

Soon after sighting their third plane in two days, a fourth aircraft appeared in the northeasterly quarter. As it seemed to be getting closer, Hamilton took a chance and fired off the remaining rockets, and thus the boats successfully attracted the attention of the plane from ten miles away. By 7:45 am the airplane buzzed the boat and gave recognition signals. The survivors settled in to wait for hopeful rescue. They didn’t have to wait long.

At 8:15 am (lifeboat time) Commander Kenneth Loveland of USS Hobson (DD 464), a destroyer built in the Charleston Navy Yard, South Carolina in September 1941 and commissioned only weeks before (22 January 1942), logged that “CORRY left formation to investigate lifeboat reported by RANGER aircraft.” A few minutes before USS Ellyson (DD 454, another US destroyer), logged at 8:11 am that “Plane reported sighting two rafts with survivors bearing 300 [degrees] T[rue] distance 20 miles. CORRY left screen to investigate.” Judging from the position provided, the St. Margaret lifeboat convoy had made it 93 nautical miles to the southwest in less than four days, an impressive distance, averaging over one knot.

At 8:38 am USS Ellyson reports that “HOBSON left screen to investigate rafts.” Loveland on the Hobson reports that at 8:30 am lifeboat time “Sighted red sail on horizon bearing 330(T). 0[8]35 went to general quarters, set material condition Able; left formation to investigate sail. 0[8]45 Identified one boat towing life raft with survivors aboard. 0[8]50 Made all preparations to rescue survivors. 0[9]00 Gave boat first line, commenced taking survivors aboard.”

Loveland then went on to name all 46 survivors taken aboard (for some reason Hamilton says 45 were in the rafts and boat, but he may not have been counting himself). By 9:10 am boat’s time the ship had resumed “steaming on various courses, at various speeds resuming station in formation.” The rescue was complete. The lifeboat and raft were destroyed by gunfire, as was customary when naval vessels rescued civilians from lifeboats.

Careful to manage expectations aboard the life boat and raft, Hamilton notes that he “thought it would take some considerable time for a rescue craft to reach us, but at 0900 several funnels and masts were sighted to the NE. I now ordered the motor to be started, and lowered sails on the raft and the lifeboat. I had deliberately reserved the petrol for such a purpose. When the ships came into full view we recognized them as United States warships. I manoevered the lifeboat and raft to the lee side of the American Destroyer Hobson, and at 1003 everyone was taken on board.” Hamilton credits himself with only navigating 65 nautical miles, 30 miles less than actually covered.

The three women and 43 men plucked from likely death on the open sea were landed in Bermuda on Friday the 5th of March. Commander Loveland of the Hobson recorded that at 8:00 am (ship’s time) that morning they sighted Fort Saint Catherine behind Saint George’s Bermuda. By 9:35 they had cleared The Narrows and at 10:04 am entered DunDonald Channel. By 10:30 they were moored to a navy buoy (PR-1) at Port Royal Bay, Naval Operating Base Bermuda. At 10:35 when the engines were stopped, “Lieut. Horner, USNR and two officers came aboard to take charge of survivors.”
By 11:11 am “All survivors left ship for disposition by NOB, Bermuda…  B.W.I. for disposition by the British Command.” 

NOB Bermuda base commander Jules reported in the base’s war diary that “The escorting destroyer, HOBSON, had on board 46 British and Allied refugees who were turned over to the British. Our agreement is that all but U.S. survivors and those from Latin American nations will be turned over to them. The U.S.O. often looks after survivors of any nation.”

The Admiralty meanwhile reported on the same day their satisfaction that “Masters and W/T Operators books thrown overboard in weighted and eyelated bags in 2000 fathoms. No apparent possibility of compromise. Survivors will be fully interviewed tomorrow. Master, D.M.S. Davies, taken prisoner.

The Bermuda newspaper “Gazetteer and Colonist” carefully recorded the reception shown the St. Margaret survivors on that island. On Saturday March 6th on the front page they ran an article entitled “Group of Survivors Landed Yesterday: Adrift Five Days Before A Rescue Ship Found Them.” Hamilton wrote that two of the men were injured in the explosion, and it turns out that one of them was blinded. They corroborated that Captain Davies was the last to leave the ship. The reporter gleaned that during the interrogation of the St. Margaret’s officers, “The survivors in the boats and on the rafts had the uncomfortable feeling during all this that the enemy submarine might at any moment decide to pump a few bullets at them, but this did not happen.

The account continues: “The survivors were well provisioned with water and food, and the weather was very favourable, not too hot, not too cold, and the sea was not very rough.” Contradicting the notion (gained from a study of surnames) that there were three grown women on board, the reporter notes that “There were two ladies and a small girl on the stricken ship, and they were all well cared for in the open boat and by the ship which saved them.”

The Bermudiana Hotel, destroyed by fire in 1958. Note the proximity to Hamilton Harbour.

Photo Source: http://bernews.com/2012/03/road-to-stardom-led-through-bermuda/

St. Margaret’s men were looked after by members of the Ladies Hospitality Organization and put up in the staff dormitories of the Bermudiana Hotel. On Friday night the 5th of March “they appeared to be enjoying themselves. Each of them hopes that their stay will be brief. Whether this was their first or fourth torpedoing, as in several cases, the men want to go back to sea. Every assistance is being given the men by the Bermuda Sailor’s Home and several other organizations.”

There is a story published in the Fitchburg, Massachusetts “Sentinel” of May 4, 1944, in which Chief Steward James Mathieson claims to have been given a sweater hand-knitted by Fitchburg volunteer Ellen C. Dinardo. He says that in March 1943, “After six days in a lifeboat we were picked up and landed in Bermuda at a port named St. George.”

The facts of his survival closely align with those of St. Margaret’s survivors, but they don’t match. For instance he writes in a letter to Ms. DiNardo (who lived until May 28, 2013), that “we were bound for the Mexican gulf, and were torpedoed nine days out from home,” whereas the St. Margaret was bound for South America and was over two weeks out of port, having left in February not March. (Exhaustive search for which ship this was on Uboat.net, with the archivist of J.J. Denholm Limited Glasgow, etc., have not enabled this author to identify which ship Mathieson was sunk from, as he does not appear on the USS Hobson’s careful tally of survivors taken on board – it remains an unsolved mystery).

From Bermuda the men were placed aboard “an H.M. ship” on Monday March 15th 1943. They were repatriated to Portsmouth, England a week later, on the 22nd of March. Captain Davies had an eventful and frustrating war. On about 1st March 1943 he was transferred from U-66/Markworth to U-460 commanded by Kapitänleutnant Ebe Schnoor. U-460 returned to base in St. Nazaire four days later, on the 5th of March. Davies was sent to a merchant navy prisoner of war camp. This camp was liberated by the Welsh & Scots Guards at 10:30 pm on the 27th of April 1945 – they were a highly welcome sight to Davies, who was Welsh and spoke that language.

The HMCS Prince David, which towed the St. Margaret earlier in the war, was renamed Charlton Monarch as an immigrant ship to Australia in 1947. A year later she had to be towed to Pernambuco by the SS John Biscoe. By 1951 the ship was sold for scrap and went under the welder’s torch in Swansea, Wales, in 1951.

The USS Hobson experienced a horrific ending post-war during training exercises for the Korean War. On the 26th of April 1952 the Hobson was escorting the aircraft carrier USS Wasp roughly 600 miles west of the Azores when the Wasp had to make a sudden course change to retrieve aircraft. What happened next is ably told on Wikipedia:

“The carrier’s escort vessels had two options, slow down and let Wasp turn, or cross in front of the carrier. The Hobson’s Commanding Officer, Lieutenant Commander W. J. Tierney and the ship’s Officer of the Deck, Lieutenant William Hoefer, argued over which option was to be carried out. The Commanding Officer won, and decided to cross the bow. Lt. Hoefer announced on the deck “Prepare for collision!, Prepare for collision!” Hobson crossed the carrier’s bow and was promptly struck amidships. The force of the collision rolled the destroyer-minesweeper over, breaking her in two. Rodman (DD-456) and Wasp rescued many survivors, but the ship and 176 of her crew were lost, including Tierney.” It was one of the US Navy’s worst early post-war accidents.

Kapitänluetnant Friedrich Markworth of the Crew of 1934 amassed an impressive tally during his career: 13 ships sunk for 74,067 tons, the Cherry Valley damaged, and two warships damaged as well. During this patrol –barely a week after sinking the Bloody Marsh – Markworth was awarded the Knights Cross on the 8th of July 1942. He joined U-boats from cruisers in July 1940 and served as First Watch Officer (1WO) on U-103.

On Markworth’s first patrol to the southern Caribbean he sank nine ships for 48,896 tons and mined Castries, Saint Lucia. On the way back from the patrol, however, whilst refueling from U-117 Markworth was so severely wounded by aircraft from USS Card that he relinquished command to Paul Frerks. U-117 was sunk. In October 1943 Markworth moved ashore to the 23rd (training) Flotilla, on the eve of defeat switching to the 25th Flotilla.

Korvettenkapitän Richard Zapp had led U-66 before Markworth took over. U-66 was a highly successful U-boat, with thirty-three ships sunk worth an astounding 200,021 GRT plus another two damaged for 22,674 and two warships damaged for 64 tons. Gerhard Seehausen assumed command of U-66 until her destruction some months later. Having served 325 patrol days on three missions, Markworth would go on to live until age 78, passing away in 1994. U-66 was sunk west of the Cape Verde Island by depth-charges, ramming and gunfire from aircraft flying off the USS Block Island and the US destroyer USS Buckley on 6 May, 1944 – thirty-six of her crew survived.

SOURCES:

Åkerberg, Dani Janer, for information and photos of U-16: http://www.u-historia.com/uhistoria/historia/huboots

Bermuda “Gazetteer and Colonist,” Saturday March 6th“Group of Survivors Landed Yesterday: Adrift Five Days Before A Rescue Ship Found Them.” Pages 1 & 2

Fold3.com – for the war diaries and deck logs concerning St. Margaret from US and UK navies

Fitchburg, (Mass.) “Sentinel” of May 4, 1944, “Dare of Friends Yields Results for 1st Sweater.”

Holm Lawson, Dame Siri, http://www.warsailors.com/convoys/hx12.html for St. Margaret convoys

Holdaway, Mike, Cooper, Tony, and Hague, Arnold, for details of convoys St. Margaret sailed in http://www.convoyweb.org.uk

Jordan, Roger, The World’s Merchants Fleets 1939, Naval Institute Press, Annapolis, MD, 1999

Kemble, Mike, for an excellent website / blog about St. Margaret and WW II stories in general (he is the author of several books on the topic): http://www.39-45war.com/st%20margaret.html
Mason, Jerry, www.uboatarchive.net for details of the German war diary for the sinking
Mozolak, John, “New York Ships to Foreign Port, 1939 – 1945,” http://janda.org/ships/

Uboat.net for much of the information, including photos of U-boat Commander and its victim, http://www.uboat.net/men
Wikipedia for an interesting article on HMCS Prince David’s rescue of St Margaret in 1940 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMCS_Prince_David_(F89) and on the loss of the USS Hobson, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Hobson_(DD-464)
Wrecksite.eu for specifications and history of Montrolite: http://www.wrecksite.eu
Wynn, Kenneth, U-boat Operations of the Second World War, Volume 1 and Volume 2, 1997