White Ensign Flying: Corvette HMCS Trentonian
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The courageous, historic story of a great fighting ship of the Second World War.
White Ensign Flying tells the story of HMCS Trentonian, a Canadian corvette that fought U-Boats in the Second World War. Trentonian escorted convoys on the North Atlantic and through the deadly waters near England and France. The ship was attacked by the Americans in a friendly-fire incident during Operation Neptune and later earned the dubious distinction of being the last corvette sunk by the enemy.
Litwiller has interviewed many of the men who served in Trentonian and collected their stories. Their unique personal perspectives are combined with the official record of the ship, giving an intimate insight into the life of a sailor ― from the tedium of daily life in a ship at sea to the terror of fighting for your life in a sinking ship.
Over one hundred photos from the private collections of the crew and military archives bring the story of Trentonian to life, illustrating this testament to the ship and the men who served in it.
Keir. The three ships sailed at twelve knots following the route laid out by the NOIC Quebec: down the St. Lawrence River, into the Gulf of St. Lawrence, through the Canso Strait dividing Cape Breton from the rest of Nova Scotia, and into Halifax Harbour. Once through the strait, Trentonian would be in the North Atlantic for the first time. Harrison knew these waters and their dangers well. His previous command, Lunenburg, had escorted many convoys from Quebec City to Halifax. And although
turned out to clean ship and prepare every space for the admiral’s arrival. The men worked at a ferocious pace; there was only a short time to prepare the ship for inspection. They had just had a difficult two weeks, with the storm and sinking of Phoenix 194 and back-to-back convoys since then; little time had been available to keep the ship polished. The crew rose to the task given them. This was the first time they had been inspected by Rear Admiral Fairbairn and they made certain that his
familiar waters. The evening of February 21, 1945, found them along the Cornish coast. By morning, the convoy had rounded Land’s End in a dense fog. The fog lifted by 1030 and, with visibility improving, the radar set was switched to standby. The ship was at cruising stations, which meant lookouts had been posted, two on the bridge and three in the stern. Off in the distance they could make out a lone destroyer approaching the convoy. As the distance between Trentonian and the sleek
worked up to full speed at the time the torpedo struck and if the CAT gear was streamed and working properly. ERA George Goar and LS Jack Straw were both called as witnesses in the inquiry of Trentonian’s loss. Goar was later Mentioned-In-Dispatches for his actions following the attack. Photo courtesy of the Family of Maurice Campbell. Kinsman was then recalled to confirm the type of CAT gear in use and whether it was used properly. He was also asked if it had planed out of the water while the
Secretary of the Naval Board, June 11, 1943. Library and Archives Canada, RG24 vol. 33946, file 4052-332/109. 3. Maurice D. Smith, “Kingston Shipyards-World War II,”Fresh Water, A Journal Of Great Lakes Marine History, vol. 5, no. 1 (1990): 33. 4. J.A. MacDonald to H.R. Cory, mayor of Trenton, April 10, 1943. Library and Archives Canada, RG24 vol. 33946; file 4052-332/109. 5. “Name is Trentonian Reports Navy Dept, Town Must Adopt It,”Trenton Courier Advocate, April 15, 1943. City of Quinte