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Athenic

Athenic was the first of three sisterships, Athenic, Corinthic, Ionic II, and was launched on August 17th, 1901 for the Shaw Saville & Albion - White Star Line joint service to New Zealand.

Athenic's maiden voyage began just five months later on the London - Cape Town - Wellington route, where she would serve for another 15 years.

During a docker's strike at Wellington in 1912, Athenic had to be loaded by farmers instead.

On February 28th, 1916, Athenic called at the port of Santa Cruz, Tenerife, to pick up British prisoners from the German raider Mowe. They had arrived in the prize Westburn, which was later scuttled.

In 1917, Athenic was requisitioned under the Liner Requisition Scheme, running to New Zealand via Panama until 1919.

On May 3rd, 1920, Athenic came to the rescue of the Munsen Line's Munamar, which had run aground on Little San Salvadore Island, in the Bahamas, taking her 80 passengers plus the crew into Newport News.

In 1927, Athenic made her last voyage to New Zealand.

In May, 1928, Athenic was sold for £33,000 to Hvalfangerselskapet Pelagos A/S Svend Foyn Brunn of Brunn & Von Lippe, Tonsberg, Norway. She was converted by Smiths Dock Co. at South Bank on the Tees into a whale factory ship. She was converted to oil burning, and renamed Pelagos.

On January 15th, 1941, Pelagos was captured by the German raider Pinguin. She was one of 14 ships in the Antarctic whaling fleet that were captured at the same time. Pelagos was sent to Bordeaux, and then operated by the German whaling company Erste Deutsche Walfang Ges. She was depot oiler to the 24th Submarine Flotilla in Norway.

On October 24th, 1944, Pelagos was sunk at Kirkenes, and the following year, she was raised by the Norwegians, and put back into service with an altered superstructure.

On June 25th, 1962, Pelagos was sold to S.F. Brunn of Hamburg, and was then resold to Eckardt & Co., Hamburg, where she was scrapped. During scrapping, an oxy-acetylene fire caused damage amidships.

 

 

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