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The Fleets

Koninklijke West-Indische Maildienst / Royal West Indian Mail Service

KWIM PosterCommenced services from Amsterdam to Dutch Guiana and the West Indies in 1883. In 1888 services were extended to New York The Koninklijke West-Indische Maildienst was taken over in 1912 by Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Maatschappij (KNSM) but their ships and crews were kept seperate until 1927 when KWIM was officially liquidated.

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.

Routes:

  • 1883 Amsterdam - Paramaribo - Demarara - Trinidad - Curacao (later extended to other Caribbean and North Coast of South America ports.)
  • 1888 Amsterdam - Surinam - Demarara - Trinidad - Curacao - Port-au-Prince - New York.
  • 1905 Paramaribo-New York
  • 1912 Netherlands-Barbados-Venezuela-Colombia-Colon
  • 1913 Netherlands-Barbados-Venezuela-Curacao-Colombia-Colon
  • 1913 Paramaribo-Venezuela-Haïti-New York
  • 1920 Curacao-Maracaibo
  • 1920 Curacao-Dominican Republic

 

Funnel:
1888 Black
1919 Black with narrow white bands near top and bottom.

Fleet:

1888 1919
Vessel Built Years in Service Tons
Colombia 1915 1916 sold to Pacific Mail SS Co., New York. 5,644
Commewijne 1907 ex- St. Thomas, 1913 purchased from East Asiatic Line, Copenhagen renamed Commewijne, 1927 sold to Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Mij. (KNSM), 1932 sold to Italy renamed Progresso. 2,482
Coppename 1908 1908 transferred from N.V. Stoomvart Mij. Coppename, Paramaribo, 1913 sold to Tropical Fruit SS Co., Belize (United Fruit Company). 3,192
Cottica 1927 owned by KNSM, 1958 scrapped. 3,800
Crijnssen 1918 1927 sold to Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Mij. (KNSM), 1942 torpedoed and sunk in Caribbean. 4,321
Curaçao 1899 1901 sold to Government of Surinam, Paramaribo. 729
Ecuador 1915 1916 sold to Pacific Mail SS Co., New York. 5,544
Jan van Nassau 1913 1918-1919 US Government requisition, 1927 sold to Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Mij. (KNSM), 1928 sold to Chile renamed Concepcion. 3,330
Lodewijk van Nassau 1913 1916 mined and sunk off Galloper Lightship, North Sea on voyage Valparaiso - Rotterdam; loss of 5 lives. 3,396
Marowijne 1908 1908 transferred from N.V. Stoomvart Mij. Marowijne, Paramaribo, 1912 sold to Tropical Fruit SS Co., Belize (United Fruit Company). 3,192
Nickerie 1907 ex- St. Jan, 1913 purchased from East Asiatic Line, Copenhagen renamed Nickerie, 1927 sold to Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Mij. (KNSM),1932 sold to Italy renamed Risveglio. 2,487
Oranje Nassau (1) 1884 1906 stranded Curaçao and abandoned. 1,304
Oranje Nassau (2) 1911 1927 sold to Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Mij. (KNSM), 1939 sold to Greece renamed Corinthia. 3,721
Prins der Nederlanden 1902 1918-1919 US Government requisition, 1927 sold to Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Mij. (KNSM) and scrapped. 2,287
Prins Frederik Hendrik (1) 1888 1903 wrecked Margarita Island Venezuela. 1,642
Prins Frederik Hendrik (2) 1904 1918-1919 US Government requisition, 1927 sold to Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Mij. (KNSM), 1931 sold to France renamed La Mecque. 2,164
Prins Maurits (1) 1884 1899 wrecked Venezuela. 1,310
Prins Maurits (2) 1900 1915 sank in hurricane off Cape Hatteras; loss of 49 lives. 2,121
Prins Willem I (1) 1884 1889 sunk in collision with sailing vessel in English Channel. 1,310
Prins Willem I (2) 1890 1900 wrecked Mariguana Island, Haiti. 1,933
Prins Willem I (3) 1901 1918-1919 US Government requisition, 1920 sold to Eastern Steam Nav. Co., Bombay renamed Ahmedi. 2,121
Prins Willem II 1890 1910 went missing on voyage Amsterdam to Paramaribo; loss of 73 lives. 1,933
Prins Willem III 1890 1913 sold to Greece renamed Elpiniki. 1,951
Prins Willem IV 1894 1913 sold to Persian Gulf S.N. Co., Bombay renamed Sardar. 2,047
Prins Willem V 1897 1915 sold to French Line (CGT) renamed La Dives. 2,108
Saramacca 1908 1912 sold to Tropical Fruit SS Co., Belize (United Fruit Company) 3,284
Stuyvesant 1918 owned by KNSM, 1950 sold to Panama renamed Aeolia. 4,285
Stuyvesant 1918 1927 sold to Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Mij. (KNSM), 1950 sold to Panama renamed Aeolia. 4,249
Suriname 1908 1913 sold to Tropical Fruit SS Co., Belize (United Fruit Company). 3,275
Van Rensselaer 1920 1927 sold to Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Mij. (KNSM), 1940 mined and beached at Ymuiden, subsequently destroyed by German aircraft. 4,299
Venezuela (1) 1915 1916 sold to Pacific Mail SS Co., New York. 5,641
Venezuela (2) 1906 ex- Adolph Woermann (Woermann Line), 1918 The Shipping Controller, London, 1921 to David SS Co., London renamed Westminster Abbey, 1921 purchased by KWIM renamed Venezuela, 1927 sold to Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Mij. (KNSM), 1938 scrapped. 6,335

(KNSM ships used on KWIM sailings to New York until 1939 after the takeover, have been included in this list)

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Last updated: Jume 10, 2006 and maintained by and M. Kohli