RFA Maine 2

RFA Maine (2)

RFA Maine 2


Previous name:                     Heliopolis, Mediator

Subsequent name:                Heliopolis, Methven, Borden, Perseus

Official Number:                    120650

Class:                                   Hospital Ship

Pennant No:

Laid down:
Builder:                                D & W Hendersen Ltd (Meadowside)
Launched:                            1 December 1905
Into Service:                         17 February 1913

Out of service:                      1 March 1916
Fate:                                    Broken Up


Items of historic interest involving this ship: –


1 December 1905 launched by D & W Henderson & Co Ltd, Partick as Yard Nr 448 named  HELIOPOLIS for Alliance Steamship Co Ltd ( Harris & Dixon Ltd, Managers) London

7 December 1905 the Lloyds List newspaper reported –


7 12 1905 Lloyds List Heliopolis


January 1906 completed

18 June 1906 arrived at Cardiff from Rotterdam

24 June 1906 arrived at Avonmouth Docks from Barry to load for Australian ports

6 July 1906 sailed London docks. Captain H R Kelley was the Master

21 August 1906 arrived at Fremantle, Western Australia

4 September 1906 arrived at Albany, Western Australia

18 October 1906 arrrived at Singapore

6 November 1906 arrived at Hong Kong having suffered damage through very rough weather

4 December 1906 arrived at Newcastle, NSW, Australia

16 February 1907 in the Bristol Channel in collision with ss Orianda with fourteen of the Orianda’s crew being drowned –

Northampton Mercury 22 2 07

Press cutting from the Northampton Mercury of 22 February 1907

On arrival at Cardiff the HELIOPOLIS was found to have damage to her bows and had been holed, she entered the Mount dry dock for repairs. The Master of the ss Orianda – Captain John Williams, the Mate – G Jones and the 2nd Mate – R Hunter were among those who drowned

8 March 1907 arrived at Malaga, Spain

15 March 1907 at 16°36N 21°20W passenger Ranon Alonzo Gerrera (infant) discharged dead – natural causes

16 March 1907 at 21°31N 18°26W passenger Natindad Salado Anada (infant) discharged dead – pneumonia

17 March 1907 at 7°28N 25°14W passenger Incarnation Martin (infant) discharged dead – natural causes

26 March 1907 at 30°48S 49°31W passenger Maria Gonzalez (child) discharged dead – natural causes and at 30.41S 49.31W passenger Enginia Sanchez (infant) discharged dead – bronchitis

29 March 1907 at 42°55S 59°18W passenger Danophilo Marfil (child) discharged dead – colitis

30 March 1907 at 46°25S 63°41W passenger Antonio Tantaella (infant) discharged dead – meningitis

1 April 1907 at 52°56S 70°33W passenger Antonia Parejo Sobo (infant) discharged dead – gastritis

9 April 1907 at 35°10S 90°23W passenger Francisca Martin Rubia – discharged dead – natural causes

10 April 1907 at 32°35S 99°17W passenger Jose Genero Guena (infant) discharged dead – also passenger Antonio Roma Ocania also discharged dead – both from pneumonia

14 April 1907 at 21.09S 116.28W passenger Maria Lopez discharged dead – pneumonia. At 21.09S 116.23W passenger Francisca Ortiz discharged dead – pneumonia

15 April 1907 at 17.36S 120 08W passenger Josefa Fernandez (infant) discharged dead – gastritis

19 April 1907 at 3.17S 133.42W passenger Francisca Arco discharged deat – heat exhaustion

24 April 1907 at 14.7N 150.22W passenger Ana Valazeo (infant) discharged dead – natural causes

25 April 1907 at 18.06N 153.50W passenger Ana Medina (infant) discharged dead – natural causes

9 July 1907 at 06.21S 50.36E passenger Chin Chi discharged dead – fractured skull. At 05.59S 51.10E passenger Yan Tong Ming discharged dead – tuberculous

25 May 1907 arrived Hong Kong

4 March 1908 registered owners now Century Shipping Co Ltd (Harris & Dixon Ltd, Managers) London name unchanged

15 May 1908 sailed Alexandria for Naples and Marseilles

12 July 1908 at Marseilles, France Fireman Emin Achmed discharged dead from shock from scalding and internal injuries

16 October 1910 arrived at Newport News from Philadelphia

18 October 1910 cleared from Newport News for Honolulu

1911 / 1912 Navy Estimates made provision for an additional naval hospital ship to be registered under the Merchant Shipping Act 1906, Section 80 at an estimated cost of £68,838 and to be named MEDIATOR

17 February 1913 purchased by the Admiralty for £60,000 for conversion into a Hospital Ship  To be taken in hand at Pembroke Dock for the necessary work to be carried out at a cost of about £48,000

18 February 1913 to 19 February 1913 inspected by RN Fleet Surgeon and Naval Construction and Engineering Staff for her suitability for conversion into a Hospital  Ship

15 May 1913 Admiralty records indicated that she should be renamed MEDIATOR

6 July 1914 the Admiralty decided that she should be renamed MAINE (2)

14 July 1914 was renamed MAINE (2) after the loss of MAINE (1)

13 January 1916 the Western Mail newspaper reported –


13 1 1916 Western Mail Maine 2


4 March 1916 the Western Mail further reported –


4 3 1916 Western Mail Maine 2 


7 March 1916 conversion never fully completed and ship was considered by some as totally unsuitable for this conversion and for service as a Hospital Ship


Maine for sale press cutting


The Admiralty, auctioneers Fuller, Horsey, Sons and Casell offered her for sale by auction at the Baltic & Shipping Exchange, London on 1 March and she was resold to her former owners for £105,000. The cost of reconverting her to a cargo carrying steamer was £40,000 on completion of which her name reverted to HELIOPOLIS

3 October 1916 at sea Fireman’s Cook Kow Hung discharged dead – accidental death

28 December 1916 at sea Quartermaster Shong Lee Ching discharged dead – natural causes

15 May 1917 purchased by Canadian Pacific Railway Co, Liverpool name unchanged

24 June 1917 sailed Barry on her first sailing for Canadian Pacific

20 August 1917 renamed METHVEN by her owners

3 December 1917 berthed at London from Montreal

30 December 1918 sailed Liverpool for Vancouver via the Panama Canal for service in the Pacific

12 January 1919 arrived at St. Johns, New Brunswick

19 January 1919 sailed St. John, New Brunswick for Vancouver

15 March 1919 arrived at Vancouver

22 April 1919 arrived Hong Kong to commence her owners service from that port

20 November 1919 arrived Shanghai from Vancouver

8 December 1919 berthed at the Main Wharf, Tanjong Pagar, Singapore

25 March 1920 at 17°50N 113°30E Fireman Cheung Tak discharged dead – fell overboard – drowned 

29 March 1920 arrived at Singapore from Vancouver

12 July 1920 berthed at Singapore

21 August 1921 berthed at Empire Dock, Singapore

March 1922 sailed Hong Kong via the Suez Canal to return to North Atlantic service

22 March 1922 renamed BORDEN by her owners

8 September 1923 arrived Barbados

3 October 1923 sailed Quebec for the West Indies

16 December 1923 sailed Barbados for St. Johns NB

30 December 1923 sailed St John NB for the West Indies

7 March 1924 arrived St. Johns NB from Demerara

15 March 1924 sailed St. Johns NB for Bermuda

26 October 1926 purchased by G.E. Kulukundis, Piraeus and renamed PERSEUS

1928 purchased by Culicids & Costomeni, Syra, Greece name unchanged

1930 purchased by Atlanticos Steamship Co, Syra, Greece name unchanged

24 August 1932 arrived for breaking up by F. Bertorelli, Genoa



1.    The image above is as she was as the s.s. Heliopolis