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Day: June 22, 2022

The unfortunate fate of convoy HX-49
Military Milestones

The unfortunate fate of convoy HX-49

There is safety in numbers, so the saying goes. That was the thinking that led to the merging of two Second World War convoys headed for Great Britain in June 1940. The first convoy of 26 ships from Canada and the United States had left Halifax on June 9, accompanied by an armed merchant cruiser and two Royal Canadian Navy destroyers. On June 13, it was joined at sea by a group of 24 vessels from the Caribbean and South America, with two escorts. The Nazis were trying to starve Britain into submission. A dozen of the ships were loaded with a variety of much-needed foodstuffs—wheat, grain, cheese, meat and molasses—for civilians and military personnel. It was estimated that 225,000 people could be fed for a week on provisions carried by one 10,000-tonne merchant vessel. The other sh...

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