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ibrannan

HMS Amsterdam

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Does anybody have any information on HMS Amsterdam? I believe she was an Armed Boarding Steamer but more than that I cannot find. I believe my grandfather served on this ship. I have a photo of him in uniform but from his partial profile,only HMS AMS can be read from his hat and the only ship that fits is HMS Amsterdam.

Older family members say he was on Russia Convey Escort duty but I wonder if that would fit with the implied role of an Armed Boarding Steamer.

Any information or leads gratefully received.

Ian

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Ian,

Amsterdam was a 1745 grt passenger steamer built in 1894 by Earle's SB. & Eng. Co., Ltd., Hull for the Great Eastern Railway Company, Harwich. Fast for her day, with a top speed of 17 knots. Official Number: 99455. Admiralty requisition as an armed boarding steamer deom October 1914 to September 1919.

Best wishes,

Michael

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Do you have his service record? Those for the Royal Navy and Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve are online. Those for the Royal Naval Reserve are offline, the originals being at the Fleet Air Arm Museum and copies at the UK National Archives, Kew.

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Ian,

Amsterdam was a 1745 grt passenger steamer built in 1894 by Earle's SB. & Eng. Co., Ltd., Hull for the Great Eastern Railway Company, Harwich. Fast for her day, with a top speed of 17 knots. Official Number: 99455. Admiralty requisition as an armed boarding steamer deom October 1914 to September 1919.

Best wishes,

Michael

Thank you for the information Michael. Is it likely that this type of ship would have been used on convey escort duty?

Ian

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Do you have his service record? Those for the Royal Navy and Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve are online. Those for the Royal Naval Reserve are offline, the originals being at the Fleet Air Arm Museum and copies at the UK National Archives, Kew.

Thank you for the pointer. I dont have his service record but now I will follow up on this lead.

Ian

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Older family members say he was on Russia Convey Escort duty ...

Were there escorted convoys to Russia during the Great War? Or did he perhaps also serve in WW2?

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IAN, find here an award to skipper of the AMSTERDAM ;

BORLAND J.M RD Cdr. RNR 85U032 Amsterdam

C-in-C Home Fleets 23.05.17 Gazetted

Destroyer Patrols, Boarding Steamers Etc ending 01.10.16 DSO

An officer of great zeal and considerable ability, as shown by his services in the Armed Boarding Steamers.

Sadsac

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Were there escorted convoys to Russia during the Great War? Or did he perhaps also serve in WW2?

He definitily did not serve in WWII. He joined the RN in 1914 but was sent home as he was under-age. He rejoined a year later and demobbed at the end of the war.

can anybody else answer the question re escorted convoys to Russia?

ian

IAN, find here an award to skipper of the AMSTERDAM ;

BORLAND J.M RD Cdr. RNR 85U032 Amsterdam

C-in-C Home Fleets 23.05.17 Gazetted

Destroyer Patrols, Boarding Steamers Etc ending 01.10.16 DSO

An officer of great zeal and considerable ability, as shown by his services in the Armed Boarding Steamers.

Sadsac

This is great information. Thanks a lot.

Ian

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Ian,

Armed boarding steamers could be used for many purposes. I would suppose that would extend to include convoy escort, but I doubt that any ABS was primarily or even often used in that role. The most obvious use for abs would be in support of the North Sea blockade, working with armed merchant cruisers in the waters north of Scotland to intercept and search ships for counterband and serve as a presence against German raiders. Beyond that, abs also made good small-scale troop and personnel transports.

I haven't looked at it closely, but my sense is that ships going to Russia weren't convoyed before mid-1917 at the earliest. Obviously, the Arctic winter limited things as well.

Why would an abs not make good convoy escorts? Their armament and speed wasn't much better than a sloop and the primary threat was U-boats, not German surface vessels.

Best wishes,

Michael

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