Edwin Thomas, Mitchell - Master who died this day - RFA Eddybeach 1956.
Walter James, Pyne - Fireman who died this day - RFA War Nizam 1922.
Previous name: Olnos
Subsequent name: Limicana, Ch N Katan Stanbridge Eurofeld
Official Number: 139200
Class: Emergency Wartime Construction LEAF Group Freighting Tanker
Pennant No: Y7.154
Builder: Richardson Duck & Co Ltd, Stockton on Tees
Launched: 26 October 1916
Into Service: 1917
Out of service: 1921
Fate: Sold out of service commercially
Items of historic interest involving this ship: -
Background Data: During WW1, 18 vessels of varying types were acquired second hand and converted or purchased and converted while on the stocks, or in a few cases building as tankers. Some were converted after serving with the Dummy Battleship Squadron by the insertion of cylindrical tanks in their holds. All were originally intended to operate as RFA’s, however owing to reasons of international law and the operation of the US Neutrality Act, these oilers became Mercantile Fleet Auxiliaries being renamed with the LEAF nomenclature and placed under civilian management although operationally they remained under Admiralty control
22 October 1916 launched by Richardson, Duck & Co Ltd, Stockton as Yard Nr 649 named RFA OLMOS for the Shipping Controller
November 1916 placed under management of Lane & MacAndrew Ltd, London and renamed BEECHLEAF. Base port Devonport
1 March 1917 completed as an oiler transport
3 January 1918 was attacked when in the Mediterranean by a submarine - the torpedo missed.
9 February 1918 transferred to the Director of Transports after it was decided that all tankers under commercial management were to be run by them
23 May 1919 sailed Baton Rouge for Louch Swilly
5 June 1919 radioed she was 200 mile east of the Ambrose Channel Lightship
7 June 1919 at 38.20N 67.18W badly damaged by fire. Two Firemen killed. Third Engineer badly burnt. Engines and steam steering gear put out of action. Taken in tow by US Army Transport Westhaven. Towed to Ambrose Light, New York. The two who were killed were buried at sea
5 December 1920 arrived at Philadelphia
9 December 1920 sailed Philadelphia for Tampico
27 December 1920 berthed at Port Eads from Tampico
19 January 1921 berthed at Port Arthur from New Orleans
22 September 1921 reported by wireless that she was 54 nm east of Key West
SS West Haven which towed RFA Beechleaf into New York
28 June 1919 sailed New York for Lough Swilly
August 1919 sold to Anglo-Saxon Petroleum Co Ltd
12 May 1920 sailed New Orleans for Amsterdam
12 January 1921 berthed at Port Eads and reported as such in the New York Tribune of the next day
1921 renamed Limicana
2 April 1922 berthed at New York from Tampico, Mexico
17 February 1927 transferred to N.V. Petroleum Maatschappij, La Corena name unchanged
1927 purchased by Naptha Industrie und Tankager AG, Berlin and renamed CH. N. KAHAN
1935 purchased by Europaische Tanklager und Transport AG, Berlin name unchanged
1937 purchased by Stanhope Steamship Co Ltd ( J.A. Billmeir, Manager ) London and renamed STANBRIDGE
1 October 1937 bombed by insurgent forces while as the tanker Stanbridge she was in Gijon harbour, Spain. The ship suffered damage to her bridge, a hole in the side (6 feet across) and various deck gear was damaged.
While ss Eurofeld was taken over by the Kriegsmarine and acted as a tanker for the German Battlecruiser Aldmiral Sheer.
3 September 1939 en-route from the Dutch Indies to Germany when war was declared. Due to engine defects ordered to go to Tenerife, Canary Islands. After approximately twelve months put to sea to refuel the commercial raider 'Widder'
4 November 1939 was taken over as a unit of the Kriegsmarine
3 September 1940 sailed Santa Cruz de Teneriffe
16 September 1940 refuelled the German raider WIDDER
12 November 1940 with the Nordmark - (later to become RFA Northmark) Eurofeld RAS'ed with the Admiral Sheer - fuel, ammunition and provisions - in the Atlantic at 25N 45W. Spares from NORDMARK helped to patch up her engine
21 December 1940 met up with the German Auxiliary Cruiser THOR and commenced to refuel her the following day
26 December 1940 rendezvoued at a point codenamed Andalusien in position 15.00 S 18.00 W with ADMIRAL SCHEER, the German auxiliary cruisers THOR and PINGUIN and the captured British refrigerated ship DUQUESA
6 January 1941 met with the German tanker Nordmark and the Pinguin’s prize ship, the 8,998-ton former Norwegian tanker Storstad
10 January 1941 took on 1200t of fuel from NORDMARK
13 January 1941 embarked more than 100 prisoners from NORDMARK and was ordered to run for France
5 February 1941 met up with the German Auxiliary Cruiser THOR again and refuelled her
2 March 1941 arrived at St. Nazaire without being detected by the Allies and brought prisoners with her (Merchant Seaman from ships that the Admiral Sheer and various German merchant commercial raiders had sunk)
24 September 1944 was scuttled at St Nazaire as the Allies approached the City. Salvaged and broken up in 1950.