Swansea and Port Talbot Docks History

Docks at War -

U.S. Troopships

Two of the largest vessels ever to have entered the Port of Swansea were the American troopships ss ‘Edmund B Alexander’ and ss ‘Brazil’, which docked on the a.m. tide of Thursday, 2nd November 1944. Both ships were berthed at No. 4 Quay, Kings Dock, where they disembarked a total of 10,363 US military personnel bound for the battlefields of Europe.

The larger of the two steamers was the ‘Edmund B Alexander’ (formerly the s.s. ‘America’) with a gross tonnage of 21,329 tons, a length of 687’, a beam of 74’, and a draught upon arrival of 31’3”. She carried 255 officers and 4,964 other ranks – 5,219 men in total. The slightly smaller ‘Brazil’ had a gross tonnage of 20,614 tons, a length of 586’, a beam of 80’, and a draught upon arrival of 27’6”. On board were 271 officers and 4,873 other ranks – a total of 5,144 men.

Twenty-five trains were required to transport the troops from Swansea Docks – an operation that continued until 2.15 a.m. on Saturday, 4th November. Five trains then arrived at the port to embark a total of 1,351 men who were returning to the USA. These included 153 officers, 560 other ranks, 545 injured, and 93 US prisoners. Embarkation was completed around 7 p.m. on Sunday, 5th November, and the ‘Edmund B Alexander sailed on that evening’s tide. The ‘Brazil’ departed the following morning at 9.30 a.m.

ss Edmund B Alexander

ss Edmund B Alexander berthing

ss Brazil on 4Quay Wharf

US troops disembarking from ss Brazil, November 1944

Brazil in the locks ready to sail on the 6th November 1944

Brazil in the locks ready to sail on the 6th November 1944 with 2 tugs to guide her out

Brazil homeward bound

US troops at Swansea, 1942-44

American troop carrier U.S.S. 'Santa Rosa' being towed onto No. 4 Quay, Kings Dock, Swansea in October, 1943

Santa Rosa berthing 18th October 1943

American troopship U.S.S. 'Uruguay' arriving at Swansea Docks in August, 1942

American troopship U.S.S. 'Uruguay' making her way to the berth

US troops disembarked from ss Uruguay boarding a train at Swansea, August 1942

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