The Sinking of the Aragon

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Topics: Torpedo, Ship, Royal Navy
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The Sinking of the Aragon
With the outbreak of world one war the royal mail moved its home port to Newport, South Wales. However the Brittish government was in dire need of battle ships to strengthen their naval force. Many ships were converted from simply postal delivery vessels into war ready troop carrying ships. One of these ships was the Aragon The Aragon built in harland and wolf in Belfast was 9'588 tons and could carry 306 first class 66 second class and 632 third class passengers. It was launched on the 23rd of Febuary 1905. The following information was gathered from an unsigned letter written by an officer of the Aragon to a Mr. John William Hannay the father of a VAD on board the Aragon on her way to serve in palestine and Egypt. For two weeks the Aragon laid at anchor in the shelter of the harbour at Marseilles. Every day they would await sailing orders. At last they recieved orders and the ship, set sail. It set of in company with another transporter ship called the 'Nile' and also with an escort of destroyers. On board there was 160 nursing sisters, 150 military officers, 2200 troops and the ships own officers and crew. In total there was 2700 poeople on board the Aragon. One of these men was my great grand uncle Thomas Cassin who was an Irish man and inlisted as a British solider. Along with the thousands of people on board ready to serve there was also 2500 bags of Christmas destined for Egypt. From Marseilles they set sail to Malta in safety. However There was some fierce weather and the sea became quite heavy. Many became sick. Miss Hannay the VAD nurse being sick for just one day. They arrived at the windy bay in Malta on the 23rd of December where they

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