S.T. Greta FD79

Additional information courtesy of Birgir Þórisson


Official Number: 122946
Yard Number: 290
Completed: 1906
Gross Tonnage: 273.24
Net Tonnage: 88.69
Length: 130.6 ft
Breadth: 22.4 ft
Depth: 12.3 ft
Built: J. Duthie Torry Shipbuilding Co, Aberdeen
Engine: T.3-cyl by W. V. V. Lidgerwood, Coatbridge
Boiler: A. & W. Dalglish, Pollockshaws, Glasgow


7.7.1906: Launched by J. Duthie Torry Shipbuilding Co, Aberdeen (Yd.No.290) for The “Wyre” Steam Trawling Co Ltd, Fleetwood as GRETA.
9.1906: Completed.
19.10.1906: Registered at Fleetwood (FD79). Richard C. Ward & John N. Ward designated joint managers.
24.12.1906: Vessel mortgaged (64/64) to Lancaster Banking Co Ltd, Lancaster at 5% interest (A).
24.2.1909: John N. Ward designated manager.
8.4.1909: Mortgage (A) discharged.
22.4.1909: Vessel mortgaged (64/64) to The Manchester & Liverpool District Banking Co Ltd, Manchester at 5% interest(B).
10.4.1912: Magnus B. J. Wedum designated manager.
1.1.1914: Tonnage altered to 107.46net under provision of Merchant Shipping Act 1907.
16.1.1914: Mortgaged (B) discharged.
27.1.1914: Vessel mortgaged (64/40) to The Manchester & Liverpool District Banking Co Ltd, Manchester (C).
8.1914: Requisitioned for war service as a minesweeper (1-6pdr) (Ad.No.119).
3.8.1914: Sailed Fleetwood for Devonport.
5.8.1914: Arrived Devonport; to remain for minesweeping duties. Based Plymouth with Unit 121.
15.5.1915: Registered at Fleetwood as GRETA II. (BOT Minute 12287 dated 11.5.1915).
1.1916: Remains with Unit No.121 – Section C ‘Trawler Sweepers’ based Devonport (Sk. William Burrows RNR).
31.1.1916: Sailed Plymouth for Scapa Flow via Falmouth.
5.1916: At Cromarty as member of Grand Fleet M/S Group.
5.1916: Refit at Invergordon. Based Stromness with Grand Fleet M/S Group.
5.1917: At Aberdeen for boiler repairs which took six months at a cost of £1,100.
30.5.1917: Sk. Henry Evans RNR appointed in command.
1.1919: Returned to owner at Fleetwood.
29.1.1919: Mortgage (C) discharged.
21.2.1919: Sold to George Craig, Aberdeen. George Craig designated managing owner.
22.4.1919: Fleetwood registry closed.
10.6.1919: Registered at Aberdeen (A182).
1924: Sold to Vinzenz Putz & Co Hochseefischerei A.G., Wesermünde.
1924: Re-measured 289g 107n.
15.3.1924: Aberdeen registry closed.
3.1924: Registered at Wesermünde as GRETE PUTZ (PG347).
1929: Lengthened to 147.6 ft . Re-measured 292g 112n.
1930: Sold to “Nordsee” Deusche Hochseefischerei Bremen-Cuxhaven A.G., Bremen. Registered at Cuxhaven as BARMEN (HC223).
1935: Sold to Deutsche Heringsfisch, Nordenham. Registered at Nordenhamn (ON161).
1937: Sold to August Schmielau Söhne, Hamburg (Eggart Schmielau, manager). Registered at Altona.
1940: Sold to Hugo Hoppe, Hamburg. Registered at Hamburg (HH227).
Post 1945: Sold to August Schmielau Söhne, Hamburg.
1.5.1949: Stranded at Meðallandssandur on the south coast of Iceland. Crew of 15 rescued by local farmers.
27.6.1949: Salvaged by a group of Icelanders, mostly local farmers, using ship’s own gear. When afloat sailed to Reykjavik and laid up. Dispute over salvage money, between the owners and the insurance company and the 14 Icelanders (Bergur Lárusson and others), who salvaged the ship, was unresolved; the court issued the latter with a deed for the ship valued at 600,000 krónur, (£22,883 at the current exchange rate). Attempts to sell the ship unsuccessful.
1950: Re-measured 148.9 ft 298g 137n
5.7.1950: Registered by Bergur Lárusson and others at Reykjavik as JÓN STEINGRÍMSSON (RE231). Sent to fish for herring, but a bad decision as the 1950 season failed.
2.8.1950: In thick fog ran into and sank the Icelandic mfv ÞORSTEINN (AK7) (52grt/1946) owned by Ásmundur hf, Akranes.
Pre 23.8.1950: Whilst in harbour at Hjalteyri, crew left the ship claiming that they were not being paid.
11.1951: The subsequent claim following the loss of the ÞORSTEINN was settled by the court which found ÞORSTEINN 1/3rd to blame and JÓN STEINGRÍMSSON 2/3rds to blame. The owners of JÓN STEINGRÍMSSON were therefore required to pay 2/3rds of the ship value to Ásmundur hf which was agreed at 507.000 krónur. However, a lien was placed on the ship by the court as security for the compensation and Ásmundur hf, Akranes effectively became the owner until the court settlement was repaid. Laid up.
4.1951: Made one trip to Britain with scrap metal. Activated for the 1951 herring season, but this also failed and caught only 65 barrels of herring in one month.
12.9.1951: In a gale while laid up in Reykjavik harbour, parted her cables and was driven ashore causing some damage.
1952: Sold by Ásmundur hf, Akranes to P. & W. MacLellan Ltd, Glasgow, for breaking up at Bo’ness.
2.8.1952: Sailed Reykjavik in tow of Dutch tug in tandem with HELGAFELL (VE32) also for breaking.
8.1952: Arrived Bo’ness.
8.12.1952: Breaking commenced.


The final story of the JÓN STEINGRÍMSSON ended up being extremely complicated, and was only resolved 12 years after the ship was scrapped, when the Icelandic Supreme Court rendered the final verdict in the litigations between the owners of the ship.

16.3.1964: From a press report.

In late 1951, two of the owners (BERGUR LÁRUSSON and others) had been authorized by the others to sell the ship for scrapping, and the two claimed to have already sold it for scrap to Belgium for 250.000 krónur, when the owners of mv. ÞORSTEINN AK 7 (Ásmundur hf, Akranes), were given a lien on the ship as security for the compensation awarded by the court, (which was “in solidum“ responsibility of all the owners).
The JÓN STEINGRÍMSSON RE 231 was handed to Ásmundur hf as part of the compensation, and Ásmundur hf sold the ship for scrap.
This change of ownership is not noted in the synopsis of the registry printed in the standard reference ÍSLENSK SKIP.
However, the company that had insured the JÓN STEINGRÍMSSON paid out 400.000 krónur to the two accredited owners. They shared 250.000 krónur with the other owners but kept 150.000 krónur. It was about these 150.000 krónur that the protracted litigation centered. The two alleged that they had had to incur the extra cost of 150.000 to acquire the HAUKANES (CW&G Yd.No.424) in order to honour the Belgian contract. (They eventually lost the case.)

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S.T. Greta FD79

S.T. Greta FD79
Picture from the Internet

21/12/2008: Page published. 2 updates since then.
09/10/2015: Information updated.
17/08/2019: Information updated.