HMS Nabob (US built ) and her brief history

HMS Nabob 1944.

Above image: US built HMS Nabob (D77), aerial view, in March 44 off the coast of California during her post modification work up with Avengers of 852 Squadron. The Bogue - larger and had a greater aircraft capacity than all the preceding American-built escort carriers. Leased to the UK's Royal Navy, it was active during WWII ......... 

HMS Nabob (D77) was a Ruler-class escort aircraft carrier that served with the Royal Navy during World War II. Originally built in the United States as USS Edisto (CVE-41), a Bogue-class escort carrier, she was laid down on October 20, 1942, by Seattle-Tacoma Shipbuilding Corp in Tacoma, Washington. The ship was launched on March 9, 1943, and transferred to the Royal Navy under the Lend-Lease agreement on September 7, 1943, where she was commissioned as HMS Nabob.

The Ruler-class ships were larger and had greater aircraft capacity compared to preceding American-built escort carriers. Nabob measured 492 feet 3 inches in length with a beam of 69 feet 6 inches at the waterline and 108 feet 6 inches overall. She had a mean draught of 25 feet 5 inches, a standard displacement of 11,400 long tons, and a deep load displacement of 15,390 long tons. Her propulsion system, consisting of a single Allis-Chalmers geared steam turbine powered by two Foster Wheeler boilers, produced 8,500 shaft horsepower, enabling a maximum speed of 18 knots.

After her commissioning, Nabob underwent modifications to meet Royal Navy standards in Vancouver, completing these in January 1944. The ship was commanded by Captain Nelson Lay and was primarily crewed by Royal Canadian Navy personnel, although British aircrew from the Fleet Air Arm manned the aircraft. This mixed crewing arrangement led to initial tensions due to differing pay scales and standards between British and Canadian forces, which were eventually resolved by adopting Canadian standards for the entire crew.

Nabob's operational history includes participation in two significant operations off the Norwegian coast in August 1944. In Operation Offspring, she helped lay mines, while during Operation Goodwood, her aircraft provided combat air patrol and anti-submarine patrols during air strikes against the German battleship Tirpitz. However, on August 22, 1944, Nabob was torpedoed by the German submarine U-354 in the Barents Sea, causing substantial damage and resulting in the loss of 21 crew members. Despite severe damage, the ship managed to return to Scapa Flow under her own power but was deemed too damaged for repair.

After the war, Nabob was returned to the United States in March 1946 and subsequently sold for scrap in September 1947. However, she found a second life as the merchant ship Nabob for Norddeutscher Lloyd in 1951 and was later renamed Glory in 1967. The vessel was finally sold for scrap in Taiwan in 1977.

HMS Nabob's story is a testament to the collaborative efforts between Allied navies during World War II and the resilience and adaptability of wartime-built vessels. Despite her brief combat service, Nabob's legacy endures as an example of multinational naval cooperation and post-war resourcefulness.