Sunday, November 13, 2011

Day 806 November 14, 1941

At 3.37 AM, U-561 sinks Panamanian SS Crusader in mid-North Atlantic (33 dead). Only survivor is Brazilian coal passer Edward Barreto (possibly rescued by U-561, as he ends up a POW at Milag Nord, Germany, until 1945).

Soviet Navy loses 3 submarines. L-2 hits 3 mines between 1.07 and 6.17 AM and sinks in the Baltic Sea near the Estonian island of Keri (50 dead, 3 survivors) while M-98 is lost to mines in the Gulf of Finland (all hands lost). In the Black Sea, ShCh-211 disappears near Varna, Bulgaria, presumably to a Romanian mine (all hands killed).

Operation Flipper. British commandos of No.11 (Scottish) Group under Colonels Robert Laycock and Geoffrey Keyes (son of Admiral of the Fleet Sir Roger Keyes) land from submarines HMS Talisman and HMS Torbay to kill Rommel. Due to rough seas, only 36 of the 59 commandos get ashore 12 miles from the target at Beda Littoria.

In an attempt to resupply Malta, British freighters disguised as French, Italian or Spanish ships are sent unescorted. Operation Astrologer comprises 2 ships, SS Empire Defender and SS Empire Pelican, traveling independently. Empire Pelican is attacked and sunk by Italian SM.79 torpedo-bombers off the coast of Tunisia near the Galite Islands (1 killed).


  1. I just discovered this blog and wow! It definitely takes a lot of research and effort to create something like this. I’m writing a report on World War II and so far the only resource I’ve found that has off-beat, interesting info on it has been Shmoop. Definitely adding this one to my list!

    1. My father Charles Shand was Chief OPfficer on the Empire Pelican and wrote a book about it "Malta, The Pelican Mission" I editted it , but apart from my computer data I dont think it is available any more. Very detailed account of that fateful voyage and the POW experience

    2. My father was Chief Officer on the Empire Pelican on her last voyage. I can send you the transcript of his book if you wish

  2. Just discovered my grandmothers recipe book from 1941, The Family Circle. It gives day to day recipes and home decoration advice. While browsing through this found treasure, I came across an article for Thanksgiving, It starts out, " Thanksgiving again! A day that takes on deep meaning for all of us - a day endowed with sentiment.
    This year more than ever our thanks must come from our hearts; our tables must be just as bountiful and beautiful as we can make them-calm evidence that we intend to keep alive this truly American feast day and all its traditions.....