(Painting of a cargo ship by Ueda Kihachiro)
Cargo Ship ENKYO MARU:
Tabular Record of
© 2011 Bob Hackett
Fevigs, Denmark. Laid down at Fevigs Jernskibsbyggeri Ship Building
Co., Ltd. as a 2,278 ton cargo ship.
Launched and named MAUD.
Sold to San Peh Steam Navigation Co., Ltd of Shanghai. Renamed LUNG SHAN.
16 May 1938: The “LUNG SHAN Incident”:
Shanghai. West River, near the Whampoa Forts. Chinese soldiers shoot at the well-known British steamer LUNG SHAN that plies the river several times weekly. The British file a complaint with the Chinese who promptly pay $200 compensation to close the incident.
Sold to Società Italiana di Navigazione-Shanghai. Renamed ENDERTA.
10 June 1940:
Rome. Benito Mussolini, dictator of Italy, declares war on France and Great Britain.
Shanghai. Chartered by Teikoku Senpaku Kaisha (Imperial Steamship Co.) of Tokyo, wholly owned by the Japanese Government. Renamed ENKYO MARU. Operated by Yamashita Kisen with her original Italian crew.
5 August 1940:
ENDERTA is engaged in the coal trade. Departs Shanghai in company of similarly employed Italian merchant GRANATIERE PADULA (later HARYU MARU).
10 September 1940:
At Wakamatsu, Japan.
9 September 1943: Fascist Italy Surrenders:
Mussolini is deposed. Italy declares an armistice. As a result, ENKYO MARU is seized by Japan and her Italian crew is interned.
The ship serves as a regular ferry to Reisui (Yosu).
16 May 1945:
At 1800, departs Karatsu, Kyushu for Tangku (Tanggu),
China in ballast.
18 May 1945:
Off Saishu-To (Cheju Do), Chosen (Korea). At 1230, PB4Y’s “Liberator” heavy bombers of VPB-109 drop 3-4 bombs and get a hit between ENKYO MARU’s bridge and funnel. About 10 incendiary bombs also hit the ship’s bridge and wreck it. Two of the aft lifeboats are blown overboard and the port accommodation catches fire. The amidships section is also rocked by explosions of 2-3 bombs. The ship is swept by machine gun fire and a fire breaks out near the bridge.
At 1300, the crew is ordered to abandon ship. Portside holds No. 3 and No. 4 and the engine room flood rapidly and the ship’s forepart is engulfed in flames. ENKYO MARU sinks at 33-14N, 120-50E. Twenty-four crewmen are KIA, but 2,400 passengers she was carrying are rescued by Kaibokan CD-81.
Thanks go to Luca "Luke" Ruffato of Italy.
Ex-Italian Merchants in Japanese Service