Built by Scotts Shipbuilding and Engineering Company Limited in Greenock, Scotland. Launched in 1930 as MV Anshun for The China Navigation Company to provide passenger and cargo service in China.
During World War II, requisitioned by the British Navy at Freetown in West Africa then returned in 1940. On December 8, 1941 at the start of the Pacific War, damaged by a bomb in Manila Bay.
Afterwards, to Australia and commandeered by the Ministry of War Transport to the U. S. Army and used to transport troops and supplies between Australia and New Guinea.
During September 1942 MV Anshun departed Townsville as part of convoy Q2 with s'Jacob escorted by
HMAS Swan and later HMAS Arunta bound for Milne Bay at the eastern tip of New Guinea.
On September 5, 1942 the convoy was holding in China Strait because Japanese warships were expected to attack that night.
On September 6, 1942 HMAS Arunta escorted Anshun into Milne Bay while the rest of the convoy waited to the south. While unloading at Gili Gili dock in Milne Bay, this vessel was illuminated by lights on shore. Targeted by Japanese cruisers bombarding the area and hit by gunfire from Tenryū.
Damaged, the ship listed to the starboard side and sank in shallow water.
The port side of the ship was exposed above water, and was often photographed by Allied personnel stationed in the area.
During September 1944, Australian salvage divers successfully refloated the ship and towed it to Sydney Harbor for further repairs. Acquired by James Patrick & Company Pty Limited renamed MS Culcairn and repaired at Cockatoo Island Dockyard.
During 1946 to 1962 operated as a cargo vessel off the eastern coast of Australia.
Ultimate fate unknown, likely broken up sometime afterwards.
Some sources refer to this vessel as simply "Anshun" or "SS Anshun".
Passengers In History - Anshun
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November 16, 2018