Requisitioned Auxiliary – Gafsa





Official Number:                    115965

Laid down:

Builder:                                   Swan & Hunter, Wallsend

Launched:                              13 November 1902

Into Service:                           12 June 1915

Out of service:                        28 March 1917

Fate:                                         28 March 1917 torpedoed and sunk 


Items of historic interest involving this ship: –


Background Data:  One of an additional group of ships requisitioned by the Admiralty during WW1 to augment the ships of the RFA

Career Data:


13 November 1902 launched by Swan & Hunter, Wallsend as Yard Nr: 282 as a cargo ship named Dominion for English & American Shipping Co Ltd (C T Bowring & Co Ltd., Managers) Liverpool

January 1903 completed

On an unknown date renamed GAFSA

26 September 1906 sailed Philadelphia

1 January 1907 arrived at Baltimore

15 September 1909 sailed Philadelphia for Leith

19 November 1910 passed Gibraltar sailing west

5 February 1915 arrived at Baltimore from Huelva

12 June 1915 requisitioned for Admiralty service as a collier – name unchanged – until 4 February 1916

14 April 1916 at St Mary’s Hospital, Hobeken, USA Third Engineer Officer George Bolt discharged dead from natural causes

19 June 1916 the Scotsman newspaper published in error that the ship had been reported as sunk …

GAFSA reported sunk in error

24 August 1916 having had cylindrical tanks fitted in her holds for the carriage of oil  was re-deployed as an oiler

28 March 1917 was torpedoed and sunk 10 miles SE of Kinsale Head, Co. Cork in position 51.21N 08.18W by German submarine U57 while on passage from Port Arthur to Queenstown with a cargo of fuel oil with the loss of seven lives. Those who were killed are remembered with pride on the Tower Hill Memorial