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HMS Amsterdam


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#1 IanMB

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Posted 25 April 2010 - 08:15 PM

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

#2 Michael Lowrey

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Posted 25 April 2010 - 09:02 PM

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.

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Michael

#3 per ardua per mare per terram

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Posted 26 April 2010 - 01:44 PM

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.

#4 IanMB

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Posted 26 April 2010 - 08:27 PM

QUOTE (Michael Lowrey @ Apr 25 2010, 10:02 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
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

#5 IanMB

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Posted 26 April 2010 - 08:30 PM

QUOTE (per ardua per mare per terram @ Apr 26 2010, 02:44 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
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

#6 Siege Gunner

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Posted 26 April 2010 - 10:45 PM

QUOTE (IanMB @ Apr 25 2010, 09:15 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
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?


#7 sadsac

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Posted 27 April 2010 - 02:33 PM

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

#8 IanMB

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Posted 27 April 2010 - 07:44 PM

QUOTE (Siege Gunner @ Apr 26 2010, 11:45 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
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

QUOTE (sadsac @ Apr 27 2010, 03:33 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
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

#9 Michael Lowrey

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Posted 28 April 2010 - 03:51 AM

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

#10 per ardua per mare per terram

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Posted 09 May 2010 - 02:17 PM

It is possible that he served on more than one ship during WWI and that ship was the one that went to Russia. See the thread below for one such vessel that escorted others to Russia:
http://1914-1918.inv...p;#entry1406299