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The Wreck of The 'Anglo Saxon' (1940)
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Page 1 of 1Total of 1 messages
Posted by:Aug 14th 2006, 04:28:51 pm
Fig Tree News TeamCan anyone add to the story? Please e-mail info@briland.com for contact information and other notes.

Hi, Briland

I wonder if you can help me.

On Wednesday, October 30th, 1940, a farmer on Eleuthera, I believe called Martin was working in a field near the shore and discovered two exhausted men lying on the beach, together with an 18ft Jolly-boat.

They were the only survivors from a ship, the 'Anglo Saxon' which had been shelled and sunk by a German raider. That had happened on September 21st - 2,500 miles away and 70 days before.

The two men - Widdicombe and Tapscott - recovered in hospital. Widdicombe returned to sea in February, 1941... tragically, the ship he was on was lost with all hands. Tapscott lived until 1963 when he died at the age of 42.

The jolly-boat was auctioned in December 1940 in Nassau. It was exhibited at the Mystic Seaport Museum in Connecticut but returned to the Imperial War Museum in London where it now sits the centre of the WW2 Merchant Navy exhibition. The Captain of the German raider was later sentenced to 10 years for war crimes.

66 years later, I am writing a tribute to the 'Anglo Saxon' and her crew and I wonder if you there might be somebody locally who might have memories of the incident.
Perhaps a local paper could help me with data regarding location of the jolly-boat grounding... I assume that would have been on North Island.

I would be grateful for any assistance.

In 1940 I was a fifteen year old seaman in the Merchant Navy - I am 81 years old and must assume that Mr Martin, bless him, has passed on.

Kind regards
David Simpson

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