Survivors of the Tinhow saved by two Portuguese vessels

News of the arrival of Tinhow castaways in Mozambique

News of the arrival of Tinhow castaways in Mozambique
(Jornal Notícias de Lourenço Marques)


Type: Tug
Tonnage:  475 GT
Owner: Mozambique Provincial Government  

Homeport: Lourenço Marques
Built: Delfzijl - Países Baixos Netherlands

Nossa Senhora dos Milagres

Type: Fishing Ship

Homeport: Lourenço Marques

The tug Chaimite and the fishing vessel Nossa Senhora dos Milagres entered Lourenço Marques, Mozambique, respectively, on the 11th and 13th of May 1943, bringing two and six survivors from the British ship Tinhow, sunk by U-181 on the 11th in Mozambique Canal.

Near the village of António Enes (Angoche today), another 117 castaways arrived, on rafts and wreckage, on May 12 and 13. The fishermen saw them and got to sea in their small boats, to prevent the survivors from being injured or dead as they arrived on the coast, which was rocky and difficult to access. Most reached land with on the local ships.

At least seven bodies were found in the following days. They were buried in the António Enes cemetery with the funeral ceremonies celebrated by Reverend Boyes, from the Anglican mission.

When news of the attack reached Lourenço Marques, rescue was sent, namely the tug Chaimite, the sloop Bartolomeu Dias and aircraft.

The sinking of the Tinhow in the American Admiralty War Diaries

The sinking of the Tinhow in the American Admiralty War Diaries

The number of deaths and survivors is not easy to confirm as the documents and news cuts  found give different information. A British list of ships attacked off the Mozambican coast indicates a total of 202 people on board and ensures that 153 survived; a report prepared by the naval officer at the English consulate in Lourenço Marques, for his part, points to 201 people on board with 128 survivors; in the daily balance prepared by the Admiralty, the arrival of 135 people ashore is indicated, while a report from the Portuguese newspaper Diário de Notícias, from November 1943, ensures that a survey by the Portuguese Red Cross confirms the presence in Lourenço Marques of 132 crew and passengers of that ship.

The Tinhow was crossing the Mozambique Channel when it was torpedoed by U-181 shortly after four in the morning on May 11th.

Carlos Guerreiro


Captain: Philip Henry Aydon
Type: Vapor Mercante
Tonnage:  5232 GT
Owner: Andrew Weir & Co, London
Homeport: Glasgow
Built: Rostock (1913)


National Archives UK  §  Diary account of the Spence family assisting Allied merchant seafarers in Lourenço Marques – Maritime Archive Liverpool  §  National Archives and records Administration USA  § Arquivo do Ministério dos Negócios Estrangeiros  § Ships hit by U-boats – Tinhow  §  Jadugar Blog - A survivors story - (Consultado a15/11/2018)  §  Diário de Notícias  §  Notícias de Moçambique  §  Navios Velhos Blogue  §  Arquivo de Marinha - Portugal