Above Egerland seen after being shelled by British Cruisers.
Tonnage: 9,789 / 14,300 dwt
Cargo: 500 barrels of lubricating oil for U boats, 50 torpedoes, drinking water to supply U-boats, Provisions in special packing including smoked meat, stowed aft, which went bad in the heat, canned fruit, lemons and tobacco and cigarettes for about 500 men for four months. A great deal of supplies were intended to serve the surface raiders.
Shelled torpedoed and sunk 5 Jun 41 by Royal Navy Cruiser HMS London and Destroyer HMS Brilliant on pos. 07º 00"N 31º 00"W
In the early morning of 5th June, while proceeding towards the rendezvous "Egerland" was intercepted by H.M.S. "London," with H.M.S. "Brilliant" in company, and in order to gain time she signaled that she was the Panamanian vessel "Gallia," from Colon. The scuttling charges were then ignited and the crew abandoned ship. Before doing so, according to Bahr, a signal was sent to the Naval Western Command notifying them that their ship had been scuttled.
"London" reported that as she and "Brilliant" closed "Egerland," "London" opened fire with A and B turrets at 1010/5th June, at a range of 21,000 yards, with the object of forcing the crew into their boats as soon as possible. "Egerland" appears to have transmitted a signal on 12,700 kc/s at 1013/5th June. Later the boarding party from "Brilliant" reported that the ship could not be saved and accordingly "London" ordered her to be sunk.
"Brilliant" reported that "Egerland" proved difficult to sink and that gunfire was most ineffective. Six depth charges set at 50 ft. and fired from throwers, whilst "Brilliant" passed at 24 knots close alongside, strained the ship but did not sink her. A torpedo, set to 15 ft. struck about 50 ft. abaft the centre of the ship, did extensive damage and put her considerably down by the stern. Finally one depth charge, which had landed on board amidships, having rolled aft, exploded and cracked the upper deck down the centre line and the ship sank stern first at 1530/5th June.
By Jerry Mason USN Ret www.uboatarchive.net