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HMCS Napanee

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HMCS Napanee 1944-1945 CN-3522.jpg
HMCS Napanee, circa 1944-1945.
History
Canada
NameNapanee
NamesakeNapanee, Ontario
Ordered7 February 1940
BuilderKingston Shipbuilding Co., Kingston, Ontario
Laid down21 March 1940
Launched30 August 1940
Commissioned12 May 1941
Decommissioned12 July 1945
IdentificationPennant number: K118
Honours and
awards
Atlantic 1941-45[1]
FateScrapped 1946
General characteristics
Class and typeFlower-class corvette (original)[2]
Displacement925 long tons (940 t; 1,036 short tons)
Length205 ft (62.48 m)o/a
Beam33 ft (10.06 m)
Draught11.5 ft (3.51 m)
Propulsion
  • Single shaft
  • 2 × fire tube Scotch boilers
  • 1 × 4-cycle triple-expansion reciprocating steam engine
  • 2,750 ihp (2,050 kW)
Speed16 knots (29.6 km/h)
Range3,500 nautical miles (6,482 km) at 12 knots (22.2 km/h)
Complement85
Sensors and
processing systems
  • 1 × SW1C or 2C radar
  • 1 × Type 123A or Type 127DV sonar
Armament

HMCS Napanee was a Flower-class corvette of the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War. She saw service primarily in the Battle of the Atlantic as a convoy escort. She is named after Napanee, Ontario.

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Flower-class corvette

Flower-class corvette

The Flower-class corvette was a British class of 294 corvettes used during World War II by the Allied navies particularly as anti-submarine convoy escorts in the Battle of the Atlantic. Royal Navy ships of this class were named after flowers.

Corvette

Corvette

A corvette is a small warship. It is traditionally the smallest class of vessel considered to be a proper warship. The warship class above the corvette is that of the frigate, while the class below was historically that of the sloop-of-war.

Royal Canadian Navy

Royal Canadian Navy

The Royal Canadian Navy is the naval force of Canada. The RCN is one of three environmental commands within the Canadian Armed Forces. As of 2021, the RCN operates 12 frigates, four attack submarines, 12 coastal defence vessels, eight patrol class training vessels, two offshore patrol vessels, and several auxiliary vessels. The RCN consists of 8,570 Regular Force and 4,111 Primary Reserve sailors, supported by 3,800 civilians. Vice-Admiral Angus Topshee is the current commander of the Royal Canadian Navy and chief of the Naval Staff.

World War II

World War II

World War II or the Second World War, often abbreviated as WWII or WW2, was a global conflict that lasted from 1939 to 1945. The vast majority of the world's countries, including all of the great powers, fought as part of two opposing military alliances: the Allies and the Axis. Many participants threw their economic, industrial, and scientific capabilities behind this total war, blurring the distinction between civilian and military resources. Aircraft played a major role, enabling the strategic bombing of population centres and the only two nuclear weapons ever used in war.

Battle of the Atlantic

Battle of the Atlantic

The Battle of the Atlantic, the longest continuous military campaign in World War II, ran from 1939 to the defeat of Nazi Germany in 1945, covering a major part of the naval history of World War II. At its core was the Allied naval blockade of Germany, announced the day after the declaration of war, and Germany's subsequent counter-blockade. The campaign peaked from mid-1940 through to the end of 1943.

Background

Flower-class corvettes like Napanee serving with the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War were different from earlier and more traditional sail-driven corvettes.[3][4][5] The "corvette" designation was created by the French for classes of small warships; the Royal Navy borrowed the term for a period but discontinued its use in 1877.[6] During the hurried preparations for war in the late 1930s, Winston Churchill reactivated the corvette class, needing a name for smaller ships used in an escort capacity, in this case based on a whaling ship design.[7] The generic name "flower" was used to designate the class of these ships, which – in the Royal Navy – were named after flowering plants.[8]

Corvettes commissioned by the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War were named after communities for the most part, to better represent the people who took part in building them. This idea was put forth by Admiral Percy W. Nelles. Sponsors were commonly associated with the community for which the ship was named. Royal Navy corvettes were designed as open sea escorts, while Canadian corvettes were developed for coastal auxiliary roles which was exemplified by their minesweeping gear. Eventually the Canadian corvettes would be modified to allow them to perform better on the open seas.[9]

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Flower-class corvette

Flower-class corvette

The Flower-class corvette was a British class of 294 corvettes used during World War II by the Allied navies particularly as anti-submarine convoy escorts in the Battle of the Atlantic. Royal Navy ships of this class were named after flowers.

Winston Churchill

Winston Churchill

Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill was a British statesman, soldier, and writer who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom twice, from 1940 to 1945 during the Second World War, and again from 1951 to 1955. Apart from two years between 1922 and 1924, he was a Member of Parliament (MP) from 1900 to 1964 and represented a total of five constituencies. Ideologically an economic liberal and imperialist, he was for most of his career a member of the Conservative Party, which he led from 1940 to 1955. He was a member of the Liberal Party from 1904 to 1924.

Percy W. Nelles

Percy W. Nelles

Admiral Percy Walker Nelles, was a flag officer in the Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) and the Chief of the Naval Staff from 1 January 1934 to 15 January 1944. He oversaw the massive wartime expansion of the RCN and the transformation of Canada into a major player in the Battle of the Atlantic. During his tenure U-boats raided the Gulf of St. Lawrence, Canadian Northwest Atlantic command was created, and the RCN provided up to 40% of all escort forces in the North Atlantic. His handling of the RCN's war effort had its opponents however, and he was removed from his post as Chief of the Naval Staff in January 1944. He was sent to London as Overseas Naval Attaché, coordinating RCN operations for Operation Overlord. He retired in January 1945 as a full admiral.

Construction

Napanee was ordered 7 February 1940 as part of the 1939-1940 Flower-class building program. She was laid down by Kingston Shipbuilding Co. in Kingston, Ontario on 20 March 1940 and launched on 31 August 1940.[10] She was commissioned on 12 May 1941 at Montreal, Quebec.[11]

During her career, Napanee underwent two significant refits. Her first major overhaul began 22 May 1943 at Montreal and took five months to complete. During this refit, Napanee had her fo'c'sle extended. Her second significant refit took place at Pictou, Nova Scotia and began in August 1944.[11]

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War duty

After arriving at Halifax for deployment, Napanee was initially assigned to Sydney Force. In September 1941, she was transferred to the Newfoundland Escort Force escorting convoys between St. John's and Iceland. She remained on this route until the European destination changed to Derry in January 1942.[11]

Napanee escorted 12 trans-Atlantic convoys without loss before assignment to Mid-Ocean Escort Force (MOEF) group C1 in September 1942. With group C1, she shared credit for sinking U-356 during the battle for convoy ON 154 in December 1942, and participated in the battle for convoy KMS 10G.[10] Napanee escorted 11 trans-Atlantic convoys without loss in 1944, and spent 1945 escorting North American coastal convoys with the Western Local Escort Force (WLEF).[12] During her time with WLEF, Napanee was part of two escort group, W-3 initially and W-2 after her second refit until the end of the war.[11]

Trans-Atlantic convoys escorted

Convoy Escort Group Dates Notes
SC 47 29 September-12 October 1941[13] 63 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Iceland
ON 25 16-24 October 1941[14] 29 ships escorted without loss from Iceland to Newfoundland
SC 53 6-20 November 1941[15] 52 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Iceland
ON 38 26-30 November 1941[14] 33 ships escorted without loss from Iceland to Newfoundland
SC 59 12-21 December 1941[15] 39 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Iceland
ON 50 28 December 1941 – 3 January 1942[14] 35 ships escorted without loss from Iceland to Newfoundland
SC 65 20-29 January 1942[15] 36 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Iceland
ON 62 6-15 February 1942[14] 34 ships escorted without loss from Iceland to Newfoundland
SC 71 27 February-9 March 1942[15] 23 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Iceland
ON 76 16-26 March 1942[14] 27 ships escorted without loss from Iceland to Newfoundland
SC 78 9-21 April 1942[15] 12 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 90 29 April-11 May 1942[14] 47 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
SC 99 MOEF group C1 9-19 September 1942[13] 59 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 133 MOEF group C1 26 September-5 Oct 1942[14] 35 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
HX 211 MOEF group C1 13-20 October 1942[15] 29 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 143 MOEF group C1 2-11 November 1942[14] 26 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
SC 110 MOEF group C1 24 November-5 December 1942[13] 33 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 154 MOEF group C1 19-30 December 1942[14] Northern Ireland to Newfoundland; 14 ships torpedoed (13 sank)
HX 223 19-27 January 1943[15] 48 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
KMS 10G MOEF group C1 28 February-8 March 1943[16] Liverpool to Mediterranean Sea; 4 ships torpedoed (1 sank)
MKS 9 MOEF group C1 8-18 March 1943[17] 55 ships escorted without loss from Mediterranean to Liverpool
ONS 2 MOEF group C1 29 March-14 April 1943[14] 31 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
SC 127 MOEF group C1 20 April-1 May 1943[13] 55 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 181 MOEF group C1 2-12 May 1943[14] 44 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
SC 150 3-14 January 1944[13] 19 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ONS 28 29 January-11 February 1944[14] 29 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
HX 279 17-28 February 1944[15] 59 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 227 9-17 March 1944[14] 61 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
ON 232 14-23 April 1944[14] 45 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
HX 290 10-16 May 1944[15] 93 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 237 20-29 May 1944[14] 64 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
HX 294 9-19 June 1944[15] 113 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 242 25 June-5 July 1944[14] 99 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland
HX 299 16-23 July 1944[15] 85 ships escorted without loss from Newfoundland to Northern Ireland
ON 247 2-10 August 1944[14] 89 ships escorted without loss from Northern Ireland to Newfoundland

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Halifax, Nova Scotia

Halifax, Nova Scotia

Halifax is the capital and largest municipality of the Canadian province of Nova Scotia, and the largest municipality in Atlantic Canada. Halifax is one of Canada's fastest growing municipalities, and as of 2022, it is estimated that the CMA population of Halifax was 480,582,with 348,634 people in its urban area. The regional municipality consists of four former municipalities that were amalgamated in 1996: Halifax, Dartmouth, Bedford, and Halifax County.

Newfoundland Escort Force

Newfoundland Escort Force

The Newfoundland Escort Force (NEF) was a Second World War naval command created on 20 May 1941 as part of the Allied convoy system in the Battle of the Atlantic. Created in response to the movement of German U-boats into the western Atlantic Ocean, the Newfoundland Escort Force (NEF) was instituted to cover the convoy escort gap that existed between the local convoy escort in Canada and the United Kingdom. The Royal Canadian Navy provided the majority of naval vessels to the NEF along with its commander Commodore Leonard W. Murray, with units from the British, Norwegian, Polish, French and Dutch navies also assigned. The NEF was reconstituted as part of the Mid-Ocean Escort Force in 1942.

Iceland

Iceland

Iceland is a Nordic island country in the North Atlantic Ocean and in the Arctic Ocean. Iceland is the most sparsely populated country in Europe. Iceland's capital and largest city is Reykjavík, which is home to over 65% of the population. Iceland is the biggest part of the Mid-Atlantic Ridge that rises above sea level, and its central volcanic plateau is erupting almost constantly. The interior consists of a plateau characterised by sand and lava fields, mountains, and glaciers, and many glacial rivers flow to the sea through the lowlands. Iceland is warmed by the Gulf Stream and has a temperate climate, despite a high latitude just outside the Arctic Circle. Its high latitude and marine influence keep summers chilly, and most of its islands have a polar climate.

Derry

Derry

Derry, officially Londonderry, is the second-largest city in Northern Ireland and the fifth-largest city on the island of Ireland. The old walled city lies on the west bank of the River Foyle, which is spanned by two road bridges and one footbridge. The city now covers both banks.

Mid-Ocean Escort Force

Mid-Ocean Escort Force

Mid-Ocean Escort Force (MOEF) referred to the organisation of anti-submarine escorts for World War II trade convoys between Canada and Newfoundland, and the British Isles. The allocation of United States, British, and Canadian escorts to these convoys reflected preferences of the United States upon their declaration of war, and the organisation persisted through the winter of 1942–43 despite withdrawal of United States ships from the escort groups. By the summer of 1943, United States Atlantic escorts were focused on the faster CU convoys and the UG convoys between Chesapeake Bay and the Mediterranean Sea; and only British and Canadian escorts remained on the HX, SC and ON convoys.

German submarine U-356

German submarine U-356

German submarine U-356 was a Type VIIC U-boat of Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine during World War II. The submarine was laid down in May 1940 at the Flensburger Schiffbau-Gesellschaft yard at Flensburg, launched on 16 September 1941, and commissioned on 20 December 1941.

Convoy ON 154

Convoy ON 154

Convoy ON 154 - also ON(S) 154 or ONS 154 - was a North Atlantic convoy of the ON series which ran during the battle of the Atlantic in World War II. It was the 154th of the numbered series of merchant ship convoys Outbound from the British Isles to North America. It came under attack in December 1942 and lost 13 of its 50 freighters. One of the attacking U-boats was destroyed.

Newfoundland (island)

Newfoundland (island)

Newfoundland is a large island off the east coast of the North American mainland and the most populous part of the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador. It has 29 percent of the province's land area. The island is separated from the Labrador Peninsula by the Strait of Belle Isle and from Cape Breton Island by the Cabot Strait. It blocks the mouth of the Saint Lawrence River, creating the Gulf of Saint Lawrence, the world's largest estuary. Newfoundland's nearest neighbour is the French overseas collectivity of Saint Pierre and Miquelon.

Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland is a part of the United Kingdom, situated in the north-east of the island of Ireland, that is variously described as a country, province or region. Northern Ireland shares an open border to the south and west with the Republic of Ireland. In 2021, its population was 1,903,100, making up about 27% of Ireland's population and about 3% of the UK's population. The Northern Ireland Assembly, established by the Northern Ireland Act 1998, holds responsibility for a range of devolved policy matters, while other areas are reserved for the UK Government. The government of Northern Ireland cooperates with the government of the Republic of Ireland in several areas agreed under the terms of the Belfast Agreement. The Republic of Ireland also has a consultative role on non-devolved governmental matters through the British-Irish Governmental Conference (BIIG).

HX convoys

HX convoys

The HX convoys were a series of North Atlantic convoys which ran during the Battle of the Atlantic in the Second World War. They were east-bound convoys and originated in Halifax, Nova Scotia from where they sailed to ports in the United Kingdom. They absorbed the BHX convoys from Bermuda en route. Later, after the United States entered the war, HX convoys began at New York.

Liverpool

Liverpool

Liverpool is a city and metropolitan borough in North West England. With a population of 486,100 in 2021, it is located within the county of Merseyside and is the principal city of the wider Liverpool City Region. Its metropolitan area is the fifth largest in the United Kingdom, with a population of 2.24 million.

Mediterranean Sea

Mediterranean Sea

The Mediterranean Sea is a sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by the Mediterranean Basin and almost completely enclosed by land: on the north by Southern Europe and Anatolia, on the south by North Africa, and on the east by the Levant. The Mediterranean has played a central role in the history of Western civilization. Geological evidence indicates that around 5.9 million years ago, the Mediterranean was cut off from the Atlantic and was partly or completely desiccated over a period of some 600,000 years during the Messinian salinity crisis before being refilled by the Zanclean flood about 5.3 million years ago.

Post war service

Napanee was paid off on 12 July 1945 at Sorel, Quebec after the war had ended. She was sold for scrapping in June 1946 and broken up at Hamilton, Ontario.[2][11][18]

Source: "HMCS Napanee", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2023, January 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMCS_Napanee.

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References
  1. ^ "Battle Honours". Britain's Navy. Retrieved 21 August 2013.
  2. ^ a b Lenton, H.T.; Colledge, J.J (1968). British and Dominion Warships of World War II. Doubleday & Company. pp. 201, 212.
  3. ^ Ossian, Robert. "Complete List of Sailing Vessels". The Pirate King. Retrieved 13 April 2011.
  4. ^ Fitzsimons, Bernard, ed. (1978). The Illustrated Encyclopedia of 20th Century Weapons & Warfare. Vol. 11. London: Phoebus. pp. 1137–1142.
  5. ^ Jane's Fighting Ships of World War II. New Jersey: Random House. 1996. p. 68. ISBN 0-517-67963-9.
  6. ^ Blake, Nicholas; Lawrence, Richard (2005). The Illustrated Companion to Nelson's Navy. Stackpole Books. pp. 39–63. ISBN 0-8117-3275-4.
  7. ^ Chesneau, Roger; Gardiner, Robert (June 1980). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1922-1946. Naval Institute Press. p. 62. ISBN 0-87021-913-8.
  8. ^ Milner, Marc (1985). North Atlantic Run. Naval Institute Press. pp. 117–119, 142–145, 158, 175–176, 226, 235, 285–291. ISBN 0-87021-450-0.
  9. ^ Macpherson, Ken; Milner, Marc (1993). Corvettes of the Royal Canadian Navy 1939–1945. St. Catharines: Vanwell Publishing. ISBN 1-55125-052-7.
  10. ^ a b "HMCS Napanee (K 118)". Uboat.net. Retrieved 23 August 2013.
  11. ^ a b c d e Macpherson, Ken; Burgess, John (1981). The ships of Canada's naval forces 1910–1981 : a complete pictorial history of Canadian warships. Toronto: Collins. pp. 81, 231. ISBN 0-00216-856-1.
  12. ^ "Convoy Web". Andrew Hague Convoy Database. Retrieved 27 June 2011.
  13. ^ a b c d e "SC convoys". Andrew Hague Convoy Database. Retrieved 19 June 2011.
  14. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q "ON convoys". Andrew Hague Convoy Database. Retrieved 19 June 2011.
  15. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "HX convoys". Andrew Hague Convoy Database. Retrieved 19 June 2011.
  16. ^ "KMS convoys". Andrew Hague Convoy Database. Retrieved 7 July 2011.
  17. ^ "MKS convoys". Andrew Hague Convoy Database. Retrieved 7 July 2011.
  18. ^ "Napanee (6112156)". Miramar Ship Index. Retrieved 14 July 2016.

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