Stuff You Should Know
SS Alexander Macomb was a Liberty Ship built in the United States to be used during World War II. The ship’s builder was Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation in Baltimore, Maryland and it was operated by the United States Merchant Marine. The ship was named after the American General Alexander Macomb, known for his great leadership abilities in the Battle of Plattsburgh in 1812.
On its first mission, the ship loaded cargo made of Sherman tanks, P-38 aircraft, and explosives from New York and sailed towards Halifax as part of the convoy BX 27. It was torpedoed and sunk by a German submarine 200 miles east of Orleans Massachusetts, losing 10 crewmen in the process. The German submarine was tracked down by two other members of the convoy and they managed to sink it. The rest of the ship’s crew were rescued by the other ships in the convoy. The vessel’s remains were rediscovered in 1964 and some of the metal cargo was salvaged.