Ship Number
Vessel Type
Passenger Ship
Slip Number
Launch Date
November 11, 1920
May 25, 1922
International Navigation Co
16322 grt
BP Length
575 feet
67-6 feet
No. of Screws
Speed (approx)
15 knots
Official No.

[Harland and Wolff Collection]

Two funnels, two masts, triple screw and a speed of 15 knots. There was accommodation for 600-cabin and 1,500-3rd class passengers. She was laid down in November 1913 for IMMC's America Line and was designed as a coal burner. Work was suspended in August 1914 when the First World War was declared as construction was too far advanced for her to be completed as a cargo ship.
She was launched as the Pittsburgh for the White Star Line with ownership being recorded as International Navigation Co. Converted to oil burning during completion she was handed over on 25th May 1922 and commenced her maiden voyage from Liverpool - Philadelphia - Boston on 6th June.
On 1st December 1922 she made her first sailing from Bremen - Southampton - Halifax - New York. In April 1923 a giant wave demolished the wheelhouse injuring the occupants. Her terminal port in Germany was changed from Bremen to Hamburg in November of the same year. She was transferred to Red Star Line's Antwerp - Southampton - Cherbourg - New York service with ownership being registered as Frederick Leyland & Co.
In 1926 she was renamed Pennland for Red Star Line and commenced her first sailing under that name and on the same service on 18th February. On 16th November 1934 she commenced her last sailing for Red Star Line before the company collapsed.
In January 1935 she was sold to Arnold Bernstein of Hamburg for his Red Star Line GmbH and was refitted at Kiel prior to commencing her first voyage from Antwerp - Le Havre - Southampton - Halifax - New York on 10th May. Red Star Line GmbH was sold to Holland America Line of Rotterdam in June 1939 and the Pennland continued to operate the same service without a change of name for her new owner.
On 27th April 1940 she commenced her final sailing from Antwerp before returning to Liverpool where she was chartered by the Ministry of War Transport as a troopship for operation under Dutch control.
During 1941 she carried troops to Egypt and shuttled reinforcements to Greece.
On 25th April, during her second voyage, she bombed seven times and sunk by German aircraft in the Gulf of Athens.
[North Atlantic Seaway by N.R.P.Bonsor, vol.2,p.768]