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Bussum

I

A commune located southeast of Amsterdam, in North Holland province in the Netherlands.

(Freighter: dp. 8,550; lbp. 36O'; b. 48'; dr. 20'10" (mean); s. 0 k.; cpl. 36; a. none)

Bussum--a steel-hulled, single-screw cargo vessel completed in 1917 at Capelle-am-Ysel, Holland, by A. Vuyt and Sons--was seized in New York harbor on 20 March 1918 by United States customs officials, under the right of angary, and was turned over to representatives of the United States Shipping Board (USSB), who immediately transferred the ship to the Navy. Inspected two days later, Bussum was placed in commission on 27 March 1918, Lt. (jg.) Daniel F. Kjolner, USNRF, in command.


Bussum--designated Id. No. 2468--retained her civilian crew as she was assigned to the Naval Overseas Transportation Service (NOTS) for coastal service. She sailed on her maiden voyage for NOTS on 30 March 1918 for Brunswick, Ga., and thence proceeded to Puerto Rico. Underway for Philadelphia, Pa., on 7 May, Bussum reached San Juan on the 13th and three days later, on 16 May 1918, was decommissioned and returned to the USSB. Her name was struck from the Navy list that same day.


Although now back in civilian hands, Bussum’s association with the Navy had by no means ended. On the morning of 19 July 1918, San Diego (Armored Cruiser No. 6) was making the trip from Portsmouth, N.H., to New York City when she ran onto a mine sown by a German submarine off Fire Island and sank in 20 minutes. One of the vessels summoned to the scene, Bussum--together with the steamships Malden and S. P. Jones--rescued San Diego’s survivors and took them to Hoboken, N.J., that evening. The court of inquiry into San Diego's sinking lauded the captains of Bussum, Malden, and S. P. Jones for displaying “...courage and a splendid spirit....”


Bussum reverted to Dutch ownership after World War I and sailed under the orange-white-and-blue tricolor through the 1930's. She ultimately met her doom on 23 November 1940, when torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine, U-100, while sailing in convoy SC 11.

Robert J. Cressman


21 November 2005