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Re: Pacific Convoys 1942-44

January 26 2012 at 8:25 PM
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Nelson  (no login)
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Response to Pacific Convoys 1942-4


> It is more likely that, whoever maintained the cards would have used a numbering system and not the owners/operators - American President Lines. >

If this is so, that IF "P-10" is little more than a numbering or filing notation, then it would logically have appeared on the top center of the card, or on one of the upper corners, rather than a part of the linear array of data specific to SS President Grant, n'est-ce pas? I do agree with you, however, that Bob should at once examine that putative "P-10" with a magnifying glass--I assume Bob has a photocopy of the genuine article--to see IF indeed that is what the notation actually reads. (On taking that advice myself, read below.)

> The convoy designation FP-1 is a real head scratcher. This "FP" designation was used for a number of routes in the North Atlantic and Mediterranean but not anywhere in the Pacific. But then again, how official were the designations? Who was in charge of convoys? Did the US use the same system as the British, with ports and routes receiving letter designations? >

The convoy designation "FP-1" is definitely NOT U.S. Navy in origin, but rather British and British Commonwealth convention (although the USN certainly did conform to that practice when escorting such convoys or joining pre-existing convoys as originated by a Commonwealth ally). Now the question does quite legitimately remain, having had a Convoy FP-1 between Scotland and Norway back in 1940, would that coding have been repeated a year or two later, this time in the SW Pacific? To be sure, the earlier one may have been overlooked or forgotten, OR it could have been supposed there was no chance of any spatial or temporal ambiguity in the two convoys, but my expertise does not extend that far, and I can only raise the question. Again, Bob, I would apply the magnifying glass to determine if "FP-1" is indeed FP-1.

To my own example, I've long had a photocopy of indeterminate generation (i.e., a photocopy of a photocopy of a.....) of a splendid hand-drawn route of the Pensacola convoy as projected onto a flat grid map of the Pacific Ocean, including the Australian continent. Next to the drawn lines are a few periodic locations given, latitude and longitude, and only one is dated, namely "12/7", which makes sense given the gravity of the date......OR so I thought. To be perfectly honest, something has been naggling--Nelson combo of nagging and niggling--at the back of my skull for awhile, so I finally took your own best advice and got out my mag glass....and lo, the date is almost certainly now 12/9--the faint forward loop of the 9 is obscured by a vertical grid line--with a new estimation of where the Pensacola convoy would have been had it pushed on directly west toward the Mandates. I shall prepare a post--later today--on more thoughts and details on that by now famous convoy, but as a deservedly new thread.

> A correction to my last post: "continues superstructure" should have read "continuous superstructure" (before Nelson reminds me!) >

NOT guilty as charged! I make enuff of my own typos and careless inputs, e.g., my befuddlement on what I majored in as an undergraduate (something my father had his own misgivings about, but let's not get into that).


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