Grace's Guide

British Industrial History

Grace's Guide is the leading source of historical information on industry and manufacturing in Britain. This web publication contains 136,379 pages of information and 219,138 images on early companies, their products and the people who designed and built them.

SS Vaerdalen

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Vaerdalen at Trondheim, 2019

Built of iron and steel as a 'steam schooner' (a type pioneered on the west coast of the USA) by Trondheim Mekaniske Verksted in 1891. Length 83' 3", beam 16' 6", depth 5' 1", displacement 112 tons. Schooner rig. Originally had a Bremme compound steam engine with cylinders of 10" x 21" bore, 12" stroke, 110 IHP. Rebuilt with 220 HP Detroit Diesel engine.

Originally worked between Verdal and Trondheim carrying timber. During World War II the Vaerdalen was used to support clandestine missions to smuggle radio operators educated in Sweden into Trondheim for transmission to London of German war activities in this very important enemy port. The radio operator would be concealed in a secret compartment with his radio, batteries, and a pistol in his lap, ready to fire if the agreed signal did not appear before the hatch was opened. Half of all radio operators in Norway were captured and shot, but none were taken on the Vaerdalen.

After the war, Vaerdalen worked in the fishing industry all along the Norwegian coast. It then sailed in the general cargo trade and enfed its working days as a sand freighter in Vesterålen and was then laid up at Kvitnes, before being saved for preservation.

The above information is condensed from Olaf T. Engvig's website [1]

A Volvo Penta engine is now fitted.


See Also

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Sources of Information

  1. [1] Olaf T. Engvig's website