The Loss Of SS Gairsoppa


SS Gairsoppa

The SS Gairsoppa was a British steam merchant ship that began her career in 1919 under the service of the British India Steam Navigation Company Ltd. of London.  The ship was 399 feet in length with a beam of 52 feet (width), 28 feet in depth and weighed 5,237 tons.

The Gairsoppa was built at Palmer’s Co, Newcastle in 1919 and launched as the War Roebuck, but was renamed to Gairsoppa in honor of the stunning waterfalls in southwest India of the same name.

The Gairsoppa’s final voyage began in India in 1941 loaded with a cargo of silver ingots destined for the Royal Mint, pig iron and tea.  On 16 February, at 22.30, U-101 under the command of Ernst Mengersen, spotted her and torpedoed on the starboard side in No. 2 hold, she sank within 20 minutes, claiming the lives of 85 people.

On 18 July 2013, Odyssey Marine Exploration of Tampa, Florida, reported that it had recovered 48 tons of silver, making this probably “the deepest, largest precious metal recovery in history”.

Source: Wikipedia


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