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World War II

  • History-1

Early spring 1940
”Märtha” is salvaged and sealed but all her starboard cabins are beyond repair.

April 1940
The ship is brought to the shipping companies own repair yard. Due to the war in Europe it is hard to come by materials that are required for the reparation, and she has to sail only with her portside cabins in working order. Because of her now limited cargo hold she is replaced with her sister, “Rogaland”. The route she gets is Sandnes-Bergen.

1942-43
In connection with Nazi-Germany occupying Norway, “Martha” is renamed “Ryfylke-Norge” which which is painted in large black letters on her flanks. The Naxis had decided that no ships were allowed to be named after the royal family. (The Norwegian king and his family was in exile during the war).

February 26, 1944
”Ryfylke-Norge” is attacked by an allied submarine but skilfully manoeuvring by captain Christensen saves the ship from being torpedoed.

March 23, 1944
During the last year of the war ”Martha” was used as a ”blockade ship” and protected harbours were the German navy had their ships anchored. A British torpedo plane crashed during an air raid and exploded only a few meters from “Marhta’s” portside flank. As she was taking in water she sank closer to the shore, but miraculously nobody was injured or killed.

April 9, 1944
”Marhta” was salvaged a second time and was towed ashore. A few weeks later she was brought to Stavanger but was not repaired until the war was over.

1946-48
”Märtha” gets her original title back and is once again able to call herself ”Crownprincess”. She is commissioned to operate “hurtigrutten”, Sandness-Stavanger-Oslo.

1949
The Stavanger shipping company bought three surplus V-16 diesel engines built by General Motors. One of these replaced “Martha’s” old steam engine and her interior was refurbished. In spite of her extensive rebuilding she kept the “steamer look” with steam winches, drag tubes and straight smokestack. She then returned to her old route Oslo-Bergen.

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