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With Reuben Goossens
Maritime Historian, Cruise‘n’Ship Reviewer, Author & Maritime Lecturer
Please Note: All ssMaritime and my other related ssMaritime sites are 100% non-commercial and privately owned sites. Be assured that I am NOT associated with any cruise or shipping companies or travel/cruise agencies or any other organisations! The author has been in the passenger shipping industry since May 1960 and is now semi-retired, but continues and I hope that the well over 600 Classic Liners and Cargo-Passengers ships I have written on will continue to provide classic ship enthusiasts and continue a great deal of information and pleasure!
“N.V. Vereenigde Nederlandsche Scheepvaartmaatschappij”
Or the … “United Netherlands Navigation Company Ltd”
The ship was one of
the countless traditional C3 Class
ships built during as well as after WW2 in the
Here see the SS Friesland launched in March 1946
Upon completion she undertook her deep sea trails and she attained an excellent 17 knots, thus she headed for the Netherlands and she was delivered to her owners; “VNS,” or “N.V. Vereenigde Nederlandsche Scheepvaartmaatschappij” The Hague, who added her to their extensive fleet on September 17, 1946. As I already indicated, she was part of the “War Reparations Deal” as so many Dutch ships had lost during a long and tragic World War 2!
The Friesland commenced sailing mostly on the
It was in March 1947 that VNS officially rechristened her “Abbekerk” and she continued to sail successfully for the company on the Australian/New Zealand service and the other destinations as mentioned for the next twenty-four years.
A fine view of the just renamed SS Abbekerk
A VSN brochure, but named, Holland America Line – The ship shown is the MS Zaankerk
Although the SS Abbekerk was essentially a cargo ship, yet she offered three decks of passenger facilities in her amidships superstructure. She had accommodations for 12 passengers in considerable comfort in twin bedded cabins with private facilities as well several single cabins all having portholes.
A typical twin bedded cabin
Located far forward and directly below the Bridge was the pleasant Lounge complete with a Bar that had traditional bar stools, which was seldom seen on a Passenger-Cargo ship with just 12 passengers. The venue was well furnished in a traditional late 1940 style, as the furnishings had floral upholstery that matched the curtain on the windows. The lower walls were lined with fine walnut as were much of the furnishings, but the bar and the entrance were made out of what I believe was teak. The room offered fine views forward and to the side of the ship considering the venue had good-sized windows.
The ships pleasant lounge
The Dining room offered square and round tables and had comfortable seating. Although the room was in general quite plain, but with the use of a large mirror, a well placed clock and the dark, what seem to be brown velvet chairs does give the room a pleasant and a warm look. However, the only light that entered the room was through the portholes.
The Dining Room
Far aft on Boat Deck, being the same deck as the Lounge located far forward was the passengers Veranda. This area was covered and on each side there were a small number of floor to ceiling windows that provided some wind protection on windy days. There were ample sun lounges as well as space to play various games, etc! However, further below, the staff would erect a canvas swimming pool when the ship reached the warmer climes and it was very well used!
Note the Verandah and the tall protective windows
A view of the Verandah
Fun at the Canvas Pool
A delightful postcard that was released of the Abbekerk
The SS Abbekerk continued sailing for VSN
until July 1970 when she was sold to Royal NedLloyd of Rotterdam, however just
a year later the ship was sold to a Taiwanese Company “Zui Fat Steel
& Iron Company., Ltd.” Not long later she departed and sailed for
Asia, and she arrived at
Specifications - SS Abbekerk (3):
Shipbuilding & Drydock Company, Inc,
Yard:………….…………555 in 1946.
Launched:…………….March 3, 1946.
Delivered:…………….September 17, 1946.
Tonnage:……………..8,336 GRT & 12,056 DWT.
Length:………………..150.6m - 494.1ft.
Breadth:………………21.25m - 69.8ft.
Draught:……………..8.89m - 29.1ft.
Propulsion:………….2 Westinghouse Steam Turbines, 8500 BHP.
Speed:………………..17.5 to 17 Knots.
Sistter Ships:……..SS Rondo,
Rotti, Roepat, Radja, Limburg, Overijsel, Zeeland,
Two fine Memories of the Abbekerk!
Abbekerk seen arriving in Sydney Australia early in the morning
In conclusion SS Abbekerk is seen at Sea going at full speed ahead
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Photographs on ssmaritime and associate pages are by the author or from the author’s private collection. In addition there are some images that have been provided by Shipping Companies and private photographers or collectors. Credit is given to all contributors. However, there are some photographs provided to me without details regarding the photographer/owner concerned. I hereby invite if owners of these images would be so kind to make them-selves known to me (my email address may be found on www.ssmaritime.com only), in order that due credit may be given.
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