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The Fleets

Farrell Lines / American South African Line

Farrell's American South African Line was formed in 1925 to operate cargo and passenger services from New York to West and South Africa. In 1935 a service was inaugurated to East African ports and Mauritius and in 1948 the company was restyled as Farrell Lines. Passenger services ceased about 1965. It expanded into US-Australia cargo routes in the 1970s and purchased American Export Line in 1978. By 1991, the entire line consisted of only four ships serving the Mediterranean and Persian Gulf and the remaining operation was sold to P&O Nedlloyd in 2000.

Many thanks to Ted Finch for his assistance in collecting this data. The following list was extracted from various sources. This is not an all inclusive list but should only be used as a guide. If you would like to know more about a vessel, visit the Ship Descriptions (onsite) or Immigrant Ship web site.

  • Abbrevation:
    • MOWT = Ministry of War Transport
  • Routes:
    • 1925 New York to West Africa, South Africa.
    • 1935 New York to East Africa.
    • 1965 U.S. East Coast to Australia and New Zealand.
    • 1975 U.S. West Coast to Australia and New Zealand.

Funnel:
1925 - 1946 Buff
1946 - 2000 Buff with black top and depiction of houseflag

Fleet:

Vessel Built Years in Service Tons
African Comet 1941 1942 taken over by U.S. Navy renamed Arthur Middleton, 1959 U.S. Dep't of Commerce, 1973 scrapped. 10,812
African Crescent 1946 1973 scrapped. 7,972
African Dawn 1942 1960 sold to Maritime Administration, 1965 renamed African Lake, 1969 laid up, 1973 scrapped. 6,577
African Endeavor 1940 Built as Delbrasil for Mississippi Shipping Co., New Orleans, 1943 U.S. Navy Transport renamed George F. Elliott, 1946 returned to owners renamed Delbrasil, 1948 purchased by Farrell Lines, 1949 renamed African Endeavor, 1960 sold to U.S. Dep't of Commerce, 1972 scrapped. 7,987
African Enterprise 1940 Built as Delargentino for Mississippi Shipping Co., New Orleans, 1941 U.S. Army Transport renamed J. W. McAndrew, 1948 purchased by Farrell Lines, 1949 renamed African Enterprise, 1960 sold to U.S. Dep't of Commerce, 1972 scrapped. 7,997
African Glade 1944 ex- Ann McKim, 1947 purchased from Maritime Administration renamed African Glade, 1970 scrapped after persistent boiler trouble. 6,214
African Glen 1945 ex- Golden Racer, 1947 purchased from Maritime Administration renamed African Glen, 1967 trapped in Suez Canal in Arab / Israeli war until 1973 when sunk by Israeli air attack. 6,214
African Grove 1944 ex- Gauntlet, 1947 purchased from Maritime Administration renamed African Grove, 1969 scrapped. 6,214
African Lightning 1947 1973 scrapped. 7,974
African Meteor 1942 1942 taken over by U.S. Navy renamed Samuel Chase, 1958 U.S. Dep't of Commerce, 1973 scrapped. 10,812
African Moon 1947 1973 sold renamed Moon, 1973 scrapped. 7,972
African Patriot 1944 ex- Argonaut, 1947 purchased from Maritime Administration renamed African Patriot, 1963 laid up. 1974 scrapped. 6,214
African Pilgrim 1944 ex- Archer, 1947 purchased from Maritime Administration renamed African Pilgrim, 1962 laid up, 1973 scrapped. 6,214
African Pilot 1944 ex- Mandarin, 1947 purchased from Maritime Administration renamed African Pilot, 1963 laid up, 1974 scrapped. 6,214
African Planet (1) 1942 taken over by U.S. Navy renamed George Clymer, 1968 scrapped. 10,812
African Planet (2) 1946 1973 sold to American Foreign SS Corp, New York renamed Planet, 1974 scrapped. 7,971
African Rainbow 1946 1971 sold to Oswego SS Co., New York renamed Rainbow, 1973 scrapped. 7,971
African Star (1) 1942 12th Jul. 1943 torpedoed and sunk in South Atlantic by U.172 on voyage Rio de Janeiro to New York. 6,507
African Star (2) 1946 1973 sold to American Foreign SS Corp, New York renamed Star, 1973 scrapped. 7,971
African Sun 1942 1960 sold to Maritime Administration, 1965 renamed African Lagoon, 1969 laid up, 1970 scrapped. 6,507
Atlantic 1919 1935 transferred from the Argonaut Line, New York, 1941 sold to Cia Internacional de Vapores, Panama, 1947 renamed Theodore, 1951 renamed Archon, 1952 scrapped. 6,132
Challenger 1918 1937 purchased from Sun SB & DD Co., Philadelphia, 17th May 1942 torpedoed and sunk by U.155 in Atlantic on voyage New York to Table Bay. 7,956
Charles H. Cramp 1920 1941 transferred from the Argonaut Line, New York, 1946 sold to U.S. War Shipping Administration, New York, 1947 Scrapped. 6,220
Chincha 1912 1929 purchased from Planet SS Corp, New York, 1939 sold to Yugoslavia renamed Milena, 1941 sold to Panama renamed Gloria, 1950 scrapped. 6,395
City of New York 1930 29th Mar. 1942 torpedoed and sunk by U.160 in Atlantic on voyage Lourenco Marques to New York with passengers; loss of 26 lives. 8,272
Eastern Glade 1920 1927 transferred from U.S. Shipping Board, Seattle, 1935 sold to Postal SS Corp, New York, 1940 sold to MOWT, London renamed Empire Jaguar, 9th Dec. 1940 torpedoed and sunk in Atlantic by U.103 on voyage Cardiff to Philadelphia. 5,654
Eastern Glen 1920 1926 transferred from U.S. Shipping Board, Seattle, 1933 sold to American Foreign SS Corp, New York, 1940 sold to Runciman Ltd, London renamed Barberrys, 26th Nov. 1942 torpedoed and sunk in Atlantic by U.663 on voyage New York to Glasgow. 5,666
Henry S. Grove 1921 1941 transferred from the Argonaut Line, New York, 1946 sold to U.S. War Shipping Administration, New York, 1947 Scrapped. 6,220
Lancaster 1918 1940 transferred from the Argonaut Line, New York, 30th Dec. 1942 wrecked off Casablanca on voyage New York to Casablanca with military stores. 5,871
Pacific 1915 1935 transferred from the Argonaut Line, New York, 1940 sold to MOWT, London, managed by J. Jacobs & Co., 1st Mar. 1941 torpedoed and sunk by U.95 off Faroes on voyage New York to Grangemouth. 6,034
Sagadahoc 1918 1941 transferred from the Argonaut Line, New York, 3rd Dec. 1941 captured, torpedoed and sunk by U.124 in South Atlantic on voyage New York to South and East Africa. 6,698
West Cawthon 1919 1926 transferred from U.S. Shipping Board, New York, 1940 sold to MOWT, London, managed by Sir R. Ropner & Co., renamed Empire Bison, 1st Nov. 1940 torpedoed and sunk by U.40 in Atlantic on voyage Halifax N.S to the Clyde. 5,972
West Isleta 1919 1926 transferred from U.S. Shipping Board, Seattle, 1940 sold to MOWT, London, managed by Sir R. Ropner & Co., renamed Empire Merlin, 25th Aug. 1940 torpedoed and sunk by U.48 in Atlantic on voyage Port Sulphur to Hull. 5,680
Western Knight 1919 1926 transferred from U.S. Shipping Board, Seattle, 8th Apr.1929 wrecked off Cape Recife on voyage New York to Algoa Bay. 5,779

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