History of the Merchant Navy
01253 824349

The Fleet

INDRA (1) was built in 1888 by T. Royden & Sons at Liverpool with a tonnage of 3582grt, a length of 361ft 10in, a beam of 44ft and a service speed of 10 knots. She was delivered to Thomas Royden with McVicar, Marshall & Co. of Liverpool as managers. She was the ship that provided ‘Indra Line’ as a fleet identity and traded to India. In 1891 she was chartered by Tyser & Co. for their service to India with a general cargo outward and wool on the return, a contract which started a close relationship between the two companies. T.B. Royden & Sons became the managers in 1894. She was sold to W. Thompson & Sons of Dundee in 1896 and in compliance with that company’s policy of having their ship’s names ending in ‘ona’, was renamed Kildona. She was operated by S.S. Kildona & Co., acquired by Cunard in 1910, on their Clyde to Canada service. In December 1907 she was wrecked.

INDRANI (1) was built in 1888 by T. Royden & Sons at Liverpool with a tonnage of 3640grt, a length of 361ft 10in, a beam of 44ft 4in and a service speed of 10 knots. Sister of the Indra she was delivered to Thomas Royden in 1888. She was sold to Donaldson Bros. in 1892 for £38,250, without a change of name, and converted to carry 314 head of live cattle on the main deck. On 27th June 1915 during a voyage from the Clyde to Montreal she was captured and then torpedoed by U-24 off Tusker Light.

INDRAPURA (1) was built in 1890 by T. Royden & Sons at Liverpool with a tonnage of 3859grt, a length of 369ft 10in, a beam of 44ft 4in and a service speed of 10 knots. The second sister of the Indra she was the last ship built for Royden’s at their own yard. In 1894 she was sold to Raeburn & Verel of Glasgow and renamed Westminster. She was sold on to Ukon Gonzayemon of Tsuruga, Japan, later restyled Ukon Shoji Kabusiki Kaisya, in 1906 and became the Fukui Maru. By 1918 her owners were Uchida Kisen Kabusiki Kaisya of Amagasaki, and in October 1921 she foundered in Japanese waters.

INDRAMAYO (1) was built in 1889 by London & Glasgow Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 4110grt, a length of 400ft 2in, a beam of 45ft 1in and a service speed of 11 knots. The first of two sister ships she was delivered in May 1889 with McVicar, Marshall & Co. as managers. In 1892 she was chartered by Tyser & Co. who had refrigerated cargo space installed for the meat trade. She was sold to Houlder Bros. & Co. in 1901 and was renamed Thorpe Grange. In 1925 she was the first Houlder ship to unload a chilled meat cargo at Southampton. She was laid up in 1929 and scrapped in in 1930.

INDRANI (2) was built in 1894 by Naval Construction & Armament Co. at Barrow with a tonnage of 4994grt, a length of 400ft 2in, a beam of 48ft 2in and a service speed of 11 knots. Sister of the Indramayo, her arrival meant that there were two ships registered with the name Indrani. She was sold in 1894 to M. Naruse of Tarumi and renamed Shinbu. In 1921 she was owned by G. Katsuda of Amagasaki and later in that year by Taiyo Kaiun Kabusiki Kaisya of Kumihana, retaining the same name. When the method of interpreting Japanese spelling changed in 1930 from the Hepburn form to the Nikon Shiki method she was renamed Jinbu Maru under the ownership of Yagi Honten K.K. of Kumahami who equipped her to carry passengers within the Inland Sea. She was renamed Zinbu Maru by her owners in 1938 and became a war loss in 1942.

INDRALEMA (1) was built in 1893 by C.S. Swan & Hunter at Newcastle with a tonnage of 3150grt, a length of 330ft, a beam of 41ft 6in and a service speed of 10 knots. The first of two sisters she was launched on 23rd December 1893 for Indralema Steamship Co., with T.B. Royden as managers, the practice still being to operate ships as one ship companies. She entered service in the following year on charter to Tyser & Co on their Australia run. On 20th April 1900 she was sold to the Ulster Steamship Co. of Belfast with G. Heyne & Sons as managers and renamed Bray Head. During a voyage from Newfoundland to Belfast in 1917 she was sunk by gunfire from U-44 375 miles off Fastnet on 14th March with the loss of 21 lives.

INDRADEVI (1) was built in 1898 by J.Blumer & Co. at Sunderland with a tonnage of 2993grt, a length of 328ft, a beam of 47ft 10in and a service speed of 10 knots. Sister of the Indralema she was launched on 1st October 1898 but in the following year was sold to Houlder, Middleton & Co. for operation by the Whitgift Steam Ship Co and renamed Whitgift. She was sold to the Great Southern Railway Co. of Buenos Aires in 1900 and was renamed Alfalfa with A. Holland & Co. as managers. On 27th April 1917 whilst carrying a cargo of coal from Newport, South Wales to Malta she was sunk by U-32 30 miles west of the Scilly Islands with the loss of her 30 crew members.

INDRAGHIRI (1) was built in 1896 by Chas. Connell & Co. at Scotstoun, Glasgow with a tonnage of 4927grt, a length of 400ft 5in, a beam of 48ft 2in and a service speed of 11 knots. The first of three sister ships she was again owned by a single ship company of the same name. In November 1910 she was sold to Vestey Bros. and renamed Brodstone, the first of their fleet to be prefixed with ‘Brod’. When Blue Star Line Ltd was incorporated in 1912 they became the managers of the Brodstone with ownership being retained by the Brodstone Steam Ship Co. Her first voyage for them was from Barry Docks with a cargo of coal for Shanghai where she loaded frozen pork for the return journey. The venture was not a success and she was consequently placed on the River Plate service. During 1915 she was used as a food transport for the British Expeditionary Force in France. On 15th August 1917, during a voyage from Cardiff to Zarate in Argentine, she was torpedoed by U-40 100 miles west of Ushant with the loss of 5 lives.

INDRAPURA (2) was built in 1897 by Chas. Connell & Co. at Scotstoun, Glasgow with a tonnage of 4899grt, a length of 400ft 5in, a beam of 48ft 2in and a service speed of 11 knots. Sister of the Indraghiri she was sold, in 1911, to Osaka Shosen Kabusiki of Osaka for trade to the Dutch East Indies and renamed Indo Maru. In 1926 she was sold to Ursubo Shosen of Fuchumura without a change of name and in 1931 was broken up in Japan

INDRAVELLI was built in 1897 by Chas. Connell & Co. at Scotstoun, Glasgow with a tonnage of 5805grt, a length of 400ft 5in, a beam of 48ft 2in and a service speed of 11 knots. Sister of the Indraghiri she was sold, in 1913 to Meiji Kaiun Kabusiki of Kaisha and renamed Nankai Maru. By 1930 she was owned by Mikami K.K. of Fuchumura and in 1932 was sold on to Fuji Tachiji of Fuchumura. In 1933 she passed to Toyo Kyoyeisha K.K. of Fuchumura and was broken up in Japan during the following year.

INDRA (2) was built in 1897 by Chas. Connell & Co. at Scotstoun, Glasgow with a tonnage of 6057grt, a length of 430ft, a beam of 51ft 4in and a service speed of 11 knots. She was renamed Indro by Samuel Samuel in 1913 and sold by him to Goshi Kaishi Kishimoto Shokai of Dairen who named her Bankoku Maru. By 1919 she was owned by Taisho Kisen K.K. of Dairen and ended her career when she was wrecked in February 1929.

INDRADEVI (2) was built in 1900 by Sir James Laing & Sons at Sunderland with a tonnage of 5683grt, a length of 420ft 7in, a beam of 53ft 2in and a service speed of 11 knots. She was similar to a number of Laing vessels completed during this period, with exception of a taller funnel, and was equipped to carry railway locomotives and carriages on deck abreast of the No.3 hatch. She was purchased by Furness Withy & Co. in 1911 who renamed her Chase Side. When the British & Argentine Steam Navigation Co. was incorporated as a subsidiary of Houlder Bros she was transferred to that company and renamed El Cordobes. In 1926 she was sold to M. Querci & O. Rosini of Genoa who renamed her Pratomagno and was finally broken up in 1931.

INDRASAMHA was built in 1901 by Chas. Connell & Co. at Scotstoun, Glasgow with a tonnage of 5197grt, a length of 410ft 2in, a beam of 49ft 4in and a service speed of 11 knots. When the company’s New York service was discontinued she was acquired by Alfred Holt’s Blue Funnel Line and renamed Eurydamus and continued to operate out of New York to the Far East. She was sold to Jugoslavensko Amerikanska Plovidba of Split in 1924, renamed Jugosalvija, and served with them for ten years before being broken up at Genoa in 1934.

INDRAMAYO (2) was built in 1902 by Chas. Connell & Co. of Scotstoun, Glasgow with a tonnage of 5200grt, a length of 410ft 5in, a beam of 49ft 4in and a service speed of 11 knots. Sister of the Indrasamha she had a raked profile instead of a vertical rig. She was sold to Ryoto Kisen K.K, managed by Mitsui Bussan Kaisha of Dairen, in 1913 and renamed Kongosan Maru, serving with them until March 1928 when she was wrecked.

INDRAWADI was built in 1902 by Chas. Connell & Co. of Scotstoun, Glasgow with a tonnage of 5194grt, a length of 410ft 4in, a beam of 49ft 4in and a service speed of 11 knots. Sister of the Indrasamha she was launched on 20th May 1902. She was purchased by Alfred Holt’s Blue Funnel Line in 1915, renamed Eurymedon (1), and was deployed on their New York – Far East service. In 1922 she was sold to A/s Southern Queen, renamed Southern Queen, and was managed by Thor Thorensen of Tonsberg as a whale industry supply ship. On 24th February 1928 she became lost in pack ice east of South Orkney Island. When the ship was holed an began to sink the crew abandoned her by jumping onto the ice. At the time she was loading whale oil from the Thorensen catchers and 22,700 barrels were lost.

INDRALEMA (2) was built in 1901 by Chas. Connell & Co. of Scotstoun, Glasgow with a tonnage of 6669grt, a length of 450ft 7in, a beam of 55ft and a service speed of 12 knots. She was transferred to the Commonwealth & Dominion on its formation in January 1914 and renamed Port Alma in April 1916. In 1923 she was sold to the Vianda Steam Ship Company of London and renamed Vianda. Three years later she was sold to P. Ravano of Genoa and renamed Fidelitas. In 1928 she was sold to Societe Anonyme di Nav.’Unione’ of Genoa without a change of name and was scrapped at Genoa in 1932.

INDRABARAH (1) was built in 1905 by Sir James Laing & Sons at Sunderland with a tonnage of 5194grt, a length of 477ft, a beam of 49ft 4in and a service speed of 11 knots. Sister of the Indralema, and although built as the Indrabarah, she was sold on the stocks to the Admiralty who converted her into a Floating Workshop and Distilling Ship and named her HMS Cyclops. In 1922 she was designated a Depot Ship and during the Second World War served as a submarine depot ship with a complement of 266 officers and ratings. She was removed from the Navy List in 1946 and put up for sale but was eventually scrapped by J. Cashmore at Newport, Monmouthshire in 1947.

INVERCLYDE was built in 1906 by Chas. Connell & Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 4995grt, a length of 400ft 7in, a beam of 52ft 4in and a service speed of 11 knots. The first of two ships which were identical to the Indrasamha she was built for Inver Steamships Ltd who were managed by T.B. Royden. In 1915 she was acquired by Alfred Holt’s Blue Funnel Line for their New York – India service and briefly retained her name before it was changed to Eurymachus. On 11th June 1917 she was chased by a U-boat in the Atlantic but managed to escape by returning gunfire and laying a smoke screen. She was sold to Jugoslavensko Amerikanska Plovidba of Rijeka in 1926 and renamed Nikola Mihanovic. She was finally broken up by Thos. W. Ward at Inverkeithing in 1929.

INVERESK was built in 1907 by Chas. Connell & Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 4986grt, a length of 400ft 7in, a beam of 52ft 4in and a service speed of 11 knots. The second of two ships which were identical to the Indrasamha she was built for Inver Steamships Ltd who were managed by T.B. Royden. On 22nd March 1911, during a voyage from New York to Yokkaichi with a cargo of rails and machinery, she was wrecked at Juan de Nova in the Mozambique Channel.

INDRADEO was built in 1910 by Chas. Connell & Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 5529grt, a length of 430ft 2in, a beam of 50ft 2in and a service speed of 12 knots. In 1925 she was sold to Alfred Holt’s Ocean Steam Ship Co. and renamed Eurybates. She was sold for £22,000 in December 1926 to R & J Thomas of Holyhead and renamed Cambrian Peeress. Two years later she was transferred to William Thomas Shipping Ltd of Holyhead with R & J Thomas as managers. In 1931 she was acquired by William Thomson’s Ben Line and renamed Bendoran. In June 1944 she was sunk as a blockship at Arromanches as part of the Mulberry harbour and in 1947 she was raised and towed to Blythe where she was broken up by Hughes, Bolckow & Co. (Photo: Glasgow University Archives)

INDRABARAH (2) was built in 1910 by Swan, Hunter & Wigham Richardson. at Newcastle with a tonnage of 7395grt, a length of 471ft, a beam of 58ft 5in and a service speed of 12 knots. She was transferred to the Commonwealth & Dominion Line on its formation in January 1914 and renamed Port Elliott in May 1916. On 12th January 1924, during a voyage from Auckland to Wellington, New Zealand she was wrecked near Horoera Point 80 miles north of Gisborne. The cargo was recovered by Richardson & Co. of Napier

INDRAPURA (3) was built in 1911 by Swan, Hunter & Wigham Richardson at Newcastle with a tonnage of 8144grt, a length of 490ft 7in, a beam of 61ft 4in and a service speed of 13 knots. Built as a replacement for the Indrapura (2) she was immediately placed on the Government of Victoria’s emigrant service .On 23rd January she was transferred to the Commonwealth & Dominion Line on its formation and in the same year was deployed as a troopship carrying troops from Australia. In April 1916 she was renamed Port Adelaide. On 3rd February 1917, during a voyage from London to Sydney she was torpedoed by U-81 180miles south west of Fastnet Rock.

INDRAGHIRI (2) was built in 1912 by London & Glasgow Shipbuilding and Engineering Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 5723grt, a length of 430ft 6in, a beam of 53ft 11in and a service speed of 12 knots. She was the first of a class of four ships and launched on 6th February 1912. She was acquires by Alfred Holt’s China Mutual Steam Navigation Co. in 1915 serving briefly as Indraghiri before the name was changed to Eurylochus. On 22nd July 1918 she was chased by a surfaced U-boat but managed to escape in the rough seas but twenty three years later she met her end during the Second World War. On 29th January 1941, during a voyage from Liverpool to Takoradi she was approached by the German raider Kormoran (formerly Hamburg America Line’s Steiermark) off Cape Verde Islands and ordered to ‘heave to and use no wireless’. The master, Captain A.M.Caird, ordered full speed ahead and began transmitting ‘RRR’ for ‘raider’. The Kormoran sent up star shells to illuminate the Eurylochus and opened fire. The Eurylochus returned four rounds before her superstructure was wrecked and the ship stopped. When the raider’s searchlights spotted the crew abandoning ship they sent a boarding party to examine the ship where they found 16 heavy bombers without engines. The Kormoran’s captain, Theodore Detmers, ordered the ship to be sunk but because wireless traffic indicated a lot of shipping in the area a torpedo was to be used instead of gunfire. As the torpedo was fired a lifeboat was observed in the searchlight beam alongside the ship where the crew were trying to reboard. The Kormoran signalled that a torpedo had been fired but this was not acknowledged and when the missile struck the lifeboat disappeared in the explosion. As the Eurylochus settled in the water the radio was restarted and gave the raiders name. The German ship immediately opened fire with her AA guns and continued to shell the Eurylochus until the radio transmission ceased. The British cruisers HMS Norfolk and HMS Devonshire raced to the scene but the Kormoran escaped in the darkness. In the attack 23 crew members lost their lives and 42 were taken prisoner. The Kormoran was later sunk on 19th November 1941 by HMAS Sydney who was also lost in the action.

INDRANI (3) was built in 1912 by Chas. Connell & Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 5706grt, a length of 430ft 6in, a beam of 53ft 11in and a service speed of 12 knots. Sister of the Indraghiri she became, in September 1914, the fifth ship to be captured and scuttled by the German cruiser Karlsruhe During her campaign, which ended when she suddenly blew up on 4th November 1914 350 miles east of Trinidad, the Karlsruhe captured 17ships totalling 76,000grt, retained three as supply tenders and sank the remaining fourteen.

INDRAKUALA was built in 1912 by Chas. Connell & Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 5691grt, a length of 430ft, a beam of 54ft and a service speed of 12 knots. Sister of the Indraghiri she was completed in July 1912. In 1915 she was acquired by Alfred Holt for the China Mutual Steam Navigation Co. and briefly sailed with them as the Indrakuala before her name was changed to Euryplus (1). She was sold to the Continental Transit Co. of London in 1938 and renamed Trade. In September 1939 she was acquired by the Board of Trade under the management of Sir William Reardon Smith & Sons and renamed Botavon. The ‘Bot’ prefix indicated Board of Trade ownership. In 1940 ownership was transferred to the Ministry of Shipping and then to the Ministry of War Transport. On 2nd May 1942 she was torpedoed by German aircraft while at anchor off Murmansk as part of a Russian convoy and sank the following day with the loss of 22 lives.

INDRA (3) was built in 1913 by Chas. Connell & Co. at Glasgow with a tonnage of 5713grt, a length of 430ft, a beam of 54ft and a service speed of 12 knots. Almost identical to the Indrakuala she was acquired by Alfred Holt in 1915 for the Ocean Steam Ship Co. retaining her name briefly before it was changed to Euryades (1). On 4th February 1918 she was missed by a torpedo when sailing in the Irish Channel. She continued to served until 19th October 1948 when she arrived at Briton Ferry in South Wales to be broken up by Thos. W. Ward. (Photo: Glasgow University Archives)