Kassandra Louloudis

Ship Stats

Location: 35°10'15.42"N, 75°21'29.38"W (35.17095, -75.35816)

Depth: 70 feet

Vessle Type: Freighter

Length: 400.1 feet Breadth: 52.3 feet

Gross Tonnage: 5,106 Cargo: War material

Built: 1919, W. Gray and Company Ltd., West Hartlepool, United Kingdom

Hull Number: Unknown Port of Registry: Andros, Greece

Owner: Goulandris Bros., Piraeus, Greece

Lloyd's Register Details: Steel hull, two decks, triple expansion three cylinder engine, three double ended boilers

Former Names: Bondowoso, (Koninklijke, KRL, Ruys Willem and Co., Netherlands, 1919-1936); War Lurcher (The Shipping Controller, UK, 1919-1919)

Date Lost: March 18, 1942

Sunk By: U-124 Survivors: 35 of 35 (0 dead)

Data Collected on Site: Still and video photography; multibeam sonar survey (ADUS)

Significance: Casualty of World War II's Battle of the Atlantic

Wreck Site

stern section of Kassandra Loulooudis
Stern section of Kassandra Louloudis. Click here for a larger image. Photo: John McCord/CSI, NOAA

Lying in about 70 feet of water, the wreck site is relatively contiguous from bow to stern. Following the sinking of Kassandra Louloudis, there are unconfirmed reports that the site was blasted due to navigation hazards. Three large boilers at amidships provide the highest level of relief on the wreck site. There is also a large assortment of war materials that the vessel was originally carrying, such as rebar, truck engines, segments of pipe and railroad car wheels that are still visible throughout the site.

sonar image of Kassandra Louloudis
Multibeam sonar visualization of the Kassandra Louloudis wreck site. Click here for a larger image. Image: ADUS/NOAA

Historical Background

On March 17, 1942, Kassandra Louloudis was traveling south off the coast of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina, with an impromptu convoy of merchant vessels and tankers following behind the tanker Acme. At the same time, German U-boat U-124 was also operating in the area. When U-124 saw the convoy, the captain fired a torpedo at Acme hitting the vessel in the stern. When Kassandra Louloudis's captain saw the explosion, he made evasive maneuvers and tried to move away from the tanker. However, U-124 swung around and fired another torpedo towards Kassandra Louloudis. It struck the ship, and although the ship sank quickly, all the crew managed to abandon ship.

As the crew of U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Dione completed rescuing the Acme crew, the small vessel headed toward Kassandra Louloudis to look for survivors. Surprisingly, the entire crew survived the sinking. After recovering 20 survivors from Acme and 35 from Kassandra Louloudis, the crowded cutter Dione made its way toward Norfolk, Virginia, and put them all safely ashore.