City of Ely

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Introduction

I suppose I should have listed this ship as Samarina, but the reason for my producing this page was that it was one of the ships that Stan Mayes served on and at the time she was called City of Ely.

City of Ely was a "SAM" ship (a Liberty ship) completed as Samarina in 1943. She took part in a large number of convoys and independent voyages during WW2. She survived the war and was scrapped after a fire in 1965 so had a service life of 22 years.

City of Ely
City of Ely as Samarina - Location not known but taken in 1943. [1]

Basic Data

Item Value
Type Cargo Ship
Registered owners, managers and operators Owners: Ministry of War Transport (on bare-boat charter from W.S.A.)
Managers: Westcott & Laurance Line Ltd.
Builders Bethlehem-Fairfield Shipyard
Yard Baltimore
Country USA
Yard number 2,219
Registry N/K
Ship Design EC2-S-C1
Official number 169748
Signal letters N/K
Call sign MYLN
Classification society N/K
Gross tonnage 7,219
Net tonnage 4,380
Deadweight 10,865
Length 422.8 ft
Overall Length N/K
Breadth 57 ft
Depth 34.8 ft
Draught N/K
Engines Triple expansion steam engine with cylinders of bore 24½, 37" and 70" with stroke 48".
Engine builders General Machinery Corp.
Works Hamilton
Country USA
Boilers Class standard was 2 boilers operating at 220 psi
Power N/K
Propulsion Single screw
Speed 11
Cargo capacity N/K
Crew Class standard was for a crew of 41

Additional Construction Information

The Lloyds Register entry for Samarina for 1945-46 has the following additional information about her:

  • Fitted for oil fuel
  • Cruiser stern
  • Electric welding construction
  • 2 decks
  • She was fitted with radio direction-finding and echo-sounding equipment

Career Highlights

Date Event
26 August 1943Launched as James Blair for the US Government
September 1943Completed as Samarina for the British Government
1947Name changed to City of Ely and owner changed to Ellerman Lines Ltd.
1961Name changed to Paget Trader and owner changed to Trader Line Ltd.
1 November 1965Severeley damaged by fire
August 1966Taken to be broken up at Kaohsiung
City of Ely
City of Ely with the tug Plagal in the foreground. - Based on this, the location is presumably one of the London docks as Plagal was owned by the Port of London Authority. As Plagal was completed in November 1951, the photo must have been taken between 1951 and 1961. [1]

Service in WW2

City of Ely took part in a large number of convoys and independent voyages during WW2 according to information shown in the table below which is provided courtesy of Convoyweb - see External. Ref. #4.

Departure Convoy/Independent Arrival
Baltimore, Sep 22, 1943 Independent
Hampton Roads, Sep 25, 1943 UGS.19 (Hampton Rds - Port Said) Alexandria, Oct 22, 1943
Alexandria, Nov 13, 1943 MKS.31 (Port Said - Gibraltar)
Augusta, Nov 19, 1943 AH.9A (Augusta - Bari) Taranto, Nov 21, 1943
Taranto, Nov 28, 1943 HA.10 (Brindisi - Augusta) Augusta, Nov 30, 1943
Augusta, Dec 4, 1943 KMS.33 (Gibraltar - Port Said) Port Said, Dec 8, 1943
Port Said, Dec 12, 1943 Independent Alexandria, Dec 13, 1943
Alexandria, Dec 16, 1943 GUS.25 (Port Said - Hampton Rds) Augusta, Dec 22, 1943
Augusta, Dec 27, 1943 AH.15 (Augusta - Bari) Taranto, Dec 29, 1943
Taranto, Jan 5, 1944 HA.16 (Bari - Augusta) Augusta, Jan 7, 1944
Augusta, Jan 8, 1944 KMS.36 (Gibraltar - Port Said) Alexandria, Jan 12, 1944
Alexandria, Jan 16, 1944 GUS.28 (Port Said - Hampton Rds) Augusta, Jan 21, 1944
Augusta, Jan 22, 1944 AH.20 (Augusta - Bari) Taranto, Jan 24, 1944
Taranto, Jan 29, 1944 HA.21 (Bari - Augusta) Augusta, Jan 31, 1944
Augusta, Feb 2, 1944 KMS.39 (Gibraltar - Port Said) Alexandria, Feb 6, 1944
Alexandria, Feb 10, 1944 MKS.40 (Port Said - Gibraltar) Augusta, Feb 15, 1944
Augusta, Feb 16, 1944 AH.25 (Augusta - Bari) Taranto, Feb 18, 1944
Taranto, Feb 23, 1944 HA.26 (Bari - Augusta) Augusta, Feb 25, 1944
Augusta, Mar 1, 1944 KMS.42 (Gibraltar - Port Said) Alexandria, Mar 5, 1944
Alexandria, Mar 11, 1944 MKS.43 (Port Said - Gibraltar) Augusta, Mar 16, 1944
Augusta, Mar 17, 1944 AH.31 (Augusta - Bari) Taranto, Mar 18, 1944
Taranto, Mar 24, 1944 HA.32 (Bari - Augusta) Augusta, Mar 26, 1944
Augusta, Mar 26, 1944 UGS.35 (Hampton Rds - Port Said) Alexandria, Mar 30, 1944
Alexandria, Apr 10, 1944 MKS.46 (Port Said - Gibraltar) Augusta, Apr 15, 1944
Augusta, Apr 16, 1944 AH.37 (Augusta - Bari) Taranto, Apr 18, 1944
Taranto, Apr 21, 1944 HA.37A (Taranto - Augusta) Augusta, Apr 23, 1944
Independent Catania, Apr 24, 1944
Augusta, Apr 24, 1944 Independent
Catania, Apr 29, 1944 GUS.38 (Port Said - Hampton Rds) Hampton Roads, May 21, 1944
Hampton Roads, May 21, 1944 Independent Baltimore, May 22, 1944
Baltimore, Jun 7, 1944 Independent New York, Jun 9, 1944
New York, Jun 10, 1944 HX.295 (NYC - Liverpool) Liverpool, Jun 24, 1944
WN.600 (Loch Ewe - Methil) Methil, Jun 28, 1944
Methil, Jun 30, 1944 FS.1499 (Methil - Southend) Southend, Jul 2, 1944
Southend, Aug 4, 1944 ETM.55 (Southend - Seine Bay) Seine Bay, Aug 5, 1944
Seine Bay, Aug 8, 1944 FTM.62 (Seine Bay - Southend) Southend, Aug 9, 1944
Southend, Aug 17, 1944 ETM.62 (Southend - Seine Bay) Seine Bay, Aug 18, 1944
Seine Bay, Aug 21, 1944 FTM.72 (Seine Bay - Southend) Southend, Aug 22, 1944
Southend, Aug 25, 1944 ETM.66 (Southend - Seine Bay) Seine Bay, Aug 26, 1944
Seine Bay, Aug 29, 1944 FTM.76 (Seine Bay - Southend) Southend, Aug 30, 1944
Southend, Sep 4, 1944 ETM.71 (Southend - Seine Bay) Seine Bay, Sep 5, 1944
Seine Bay, Sep 11, 1944 FTM.2A (Seine Bay - Southend) Southend, Sep 12, 1944
Southend, Sep 14, 1944 ETM.75 (Southend - Seine Bay) Seine Bay, Sep 15, 1944
Seine Bay, Sep 22, 1944 FTM.6A (Seine Bay - Southend) Southend, Sep 23, 1944
Southend, Sep 30, 1944 ETM.80 (Southend - Seine Bay) Seine Bay, Oct 2, 1944
Seine Bay, Oct 9, 1944 FTM.12A (Seine Bay - Southend) Southend, Oct 10, 1944
Southend, Oct 17, 1944 TMM.4 (Southend - Seine Bay) Seine Bay, Oct 18, 1944
Seine Bay, Oct 23, 1944 MTM.6 (Seine Bay - Southend) Southend, Oct 24, 1944
TMM.12 (Southend - Seine Bay) Seine Bay, Nov 6, 1944
Southend, Nov 6, 1944 TMM.12 (Southend - Seine Bay)
MTM.14 (Seine Bay - Southend) Southend, Nov 10, 1944
Seine Bay, Nov 10, 1944 MTM.14 (Seine Bay - Southend)
Southend, Dec 12, 1944 TAM.16 (Southend - Antwerp) Antwerp, Dec 14, 1944
Antwerp, Dec 15, 1944 ATM.14 (Antwerp - Southend) Southend, Dec 16, 1944
Southend, Dec 22, 1944 TAM.26 (Southend - Antwerp) Antwerp, Dec 23, 1944
Terneuzen, Dec 30, 1944 ATM.24 (Antwerp - Southend) Southend, Dec 31, 1944
Southend, Jan 3, 1945 TAM.38 (Southend - Antwerp) Antwerp, Jan 4, 1945
Antwerp, Jan 6, 1945 ATM.31 (Antwerp - Southend) Southend, Jan 7, 1945
Southend, Jan 16, 1945 TAM.51 (Southend - Antwerp) Antwerp, Jan 17, 1945
Antwerp, Jan 20, 1945 ATM.42 (Antwerp - Southend) Southend, Jan 21, 1945
Southend, Jan 26, 1945 TAM.61 (Southend - Antwerp) Antwerp, Jan 27, 1945
Antwerp, Jan 30, 1945 ATM.50 (Antwerp - Southend) Southend, Feb 2, 1945
Southend, Feb 8, 1945 TAM.74 (Southend - Antwerp) Antwerp, Feb 9, 1945
Antwerp, Feb 13, 1945 ATM.63 (Antwerp - Southend) Southend, Feb 14, 1945
Southend, Feb 22, 1945 TAM.88 (Southend - Antwerp) Antwerp, Feb 24, 1945
Antwerp, Feb 25, 1945 ATM.75 (Antwerp - Southend) Southend, Feb 26, 1945
Downs, Mar 10, 1945 TAM.103 (Southend - Antwerp) Antwerp, Mar 11, 1945
Antwerp, Mar 13, 1945 ATM.91 (Antwerp - Southend) Southend, Mar 14, 1945
Southend, Mar 31, 1945 TAM.124 (Southend - Antwerp) Antwerp, Apr 1, 1945
Antwerp, Apr 2, 1945 ATM.112 (Antwerp - Southend) Southend, Apr 3, 1945
Southend, Apr 17, 1945 TAM.141 (Southend - Antwerp) Antwerp, Apr 18, 1945
Antwerp, Apr 20, 1945 ATM.130 (Antwerp - Southend) Southend, Apr 21, 1945
TAM.149 (Southend - Antwerp) Antwerp, Apr 25, 1945
Southend, Apr 25, 1945 TAM.149 (Southend - Antwerp)
Antwerp, Apr 27, 1945 ATM.137 (Antwerp - Southend) Southend, Apr 28, 1945
TAM.164 (Southend - Antwerp) Antwerp, May 10, 1945
Southend, May 10, 1945 TAM.164 (Southend - Antwerp)
Antwerp, May 12, 1945 ATM.152 (Antwerp - Southend) Southend, May 13, 1945
Southend, May 17, 1945 TBC.161 (Southend - M Haven) Milford Haven, May 20, 1945
Milford Haven, May 20, 1945 Independent Liverpool, May 21, 1945
Liverpool, Jun 3, 1945 Independent Kirkwall, Jun 5, 1945
Kirkwall, Jun 6, 1945 Independent Tromso, Jun 10, 1945
Tromso, Jun 13, 1945 Independent Kirkwall, Jun 16, 1945
Kirkwall, Jun 16, 1945 Independent Methil, Jun 17, 1945
Methil, Jun 17, 1945 Independent London, Jun 19, 1945
London, Jun 21, 1945 Independent Antwerp, Jun 22, 1945
Independent London, Jul 4, 1945
London, Jul 9, 1945 Independent Antwerp, Jul 10, 1945
Independent London, Jul 12, 1945
Antwerp, Jul 12, 1945 Independent
London, Jul 23, 1945 Independent Bremerhaven, Jul 29, 1945
Independent Hamburg, Jul 30, 1945
Bremerhaven, Jul 30, 1945 Independent

Service post WW2

Samarina was transferred to Ellerman Lines in 1947 and was then renamed City of Ely. No detailed information is currently available about her service in this period apart from an account of a voyage by Stan Mayes that can be found on the Benjidog Recollections website HERE and contains several photos.

In 1961 she was sold to Trader Line Ltd. and her name changed to Paget Trader.

Loss of Paget Trader (formerly City of Ely)

On 2 November 1965 there was a cargo fire at position 05° 45' N, 94° 00' E and she put into Singapore. She was later laid up at Hong Kong before being taken to Kaohsiung in Taiwan to be scrapped.

Image Credits

  1. By courtesy of Stan Mayes