KNM King Haakon VII - A gift from President Roosevelt

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KNM King Haakon VII - submarine chaser

BUILDING SITE: Geo. Lawley, Neponset, MA, USA
LAUNCHED: 29 April 1942
HOIST COMMAND: 16 September 1942

2x 76mm cannons
2x 12,7mm MITR machineguns
2x 7.6mm MG machineguns
60x depth charges/sinking mines

Displacement: 357 Ton
Hull: Steel
Length: 57.9m
Width: 7.7m
Depth: 2.1m
Crew: 47 men

2x Fairbanks Morse Dieseleigned
Power: 3.600 AHK
Speed: 20 Knots

1942: Gift from President Roosevelt on 19 Sep. to King Haakon VII for his 70th birthday and given the name King Haakon VII
1942: Pennant number P 03
1942: Commanding officer Atlantic Coast, Halifax
1945: Sailed to Norway and arrived in Kristiansand on 26 June
1946: Pennant number P 390
1950: Used for fisheries supervision
1952: command canceled 26 June
1953: Sold in August to Rogaland Seagut School

It was in the spring of 1942 that President Roosevelt decided to give Norway a submarine chaser, and that this gift was to be given on H.M. King Haakon VII’s 70th birthday. The president also wanted the gift to be presented at a ceremony where H.K.H. a Crown Princess Märtha was to receive the gift on behalf of the king. In a government meeting in London on 30 June 1942, this was made known.

A unanimous government agreed that the gift should be received with thanks. However, the Crown Princess was in England at this time and would not be able to be back in the USA until the King’s birthday on 3 August 1942. It was then decided that the handover ceremony would take place on 16 September 1942. 16 September 1942 arose in Washington DC with glorious sun.

At the Marine base, preparations had been made for a very rare event, a president handing over a warship to another country’s monarch, represented by his daughter-in-law.

At exactly 1200, the president’s entourage arrived. In the first car you saw President Roosevelt, and by his side H.K.H. Crown Princess Märtha, and in the next car Mrs. President Roosevelt. The President opened his speech in his characteristic clear and appealing voice with the words: “Let us Look to Norway”, and continued: “If there is still anyone who does not understand why this war is being fought - let him look to Norway. If there are still some who harbor illusions that this war could have been avoided - let him look towards Norway. And if there is someone who doubts the democratic will of the Western Powers - let him look again to Norway, because there he will find a country who may have been attacked, but who is invincible, and thus he has received an answer to his question”.

In her reply, the Crown Princess expressed what we all felt and thought about America’s great and warm-hearted president’s mention of the Norwegian people, and for his understanding of Norway’s cause, and said, among other things:

“I am very happy on behalf of the king and the Norwegian government to receive this warship, which is on loan to my country. And the lease agreement has today been transferred.”

I have just returned from London and am therefore in a position where I can personally bear witness to the joy your kindness and magnificent gift has given to all who today lead the Norwegian people in the struggle for freedom. Not only the leaders, but Norwegian women and men everywhere at sea and on land, at home and abroad, have been inflamed by what is happening here today. The beautiful and appreciative words that you, Mr. President, have just said about the Norwegian people and their contribution to our common cause, will sooner or later find their way to every single Norwegian home, every single Norwegian ship on the seven seas - yes to every place on this globe where Norwegian men and women pray and work and fight to regain the free, happy Norway that we all long for".*

The speeches were broadcast over every American radio station and referenced in publications throughout the free world.

Shortly after the crown princess’s speech, the changing of the flag took place according to traditional pattern, and the playing of the national anthems of the respective countries.

When the crew change had been made, the president’s car drove all the way to the gangway and the crown princess got on board accompanied by ambassador Morgenstjerne and commander Askim. They were received by the new ship’s commander, Lieutenant Leif R. Lund, who accompanied the Crown Princess aft where she saluted the flag. Then the large-scale ceremony was over and passed into history. But for KING HAAKON VII, a long working day had begun.

It would be too extensive here to give a summary of the service the vessel performed until the end of the war. But it should be mentioned that this small vessel set two records that no other vessel in the Royal Norwegian Navy could beat. It sailed in the war zone a total of 85,000 nautical miles, or a distance equal to 4 times around the earth at the equator. It participated in 79 convoys without incident, except for those caused by storms and ice and other natural forces.

There was no loss of life or serious damage of any kind. Although it was close during a hurricane in the Atlantic in November 1942, when a man was knocked overboard, but fished up after 25 min. in rough seas. It was a happy ship that kept about 90% of the same crew until the end of the war. Only the captain was changed 3 times. Yes, even in the case of the ship’s dog “Whiskey”, he was a veteran and registered with the Allied Forces Mascot Club. It too survived the war in good condition.

From 3 May to 2 June 1945, the submarine chaser was in Key West for inspection and maintenance work. From here the vessel left on 4 June 1945 to go to Norway, and on 26 June it arrived in Kristiansand. After the war, the vessel served until the command was canceled in February 1951, and according to a parliamentary resolution of 26 June 1952, it was decided that KING HAAKON VII should be scrapped and sold. In August 1953, the fighter was sold to Rogaland Sjøgutskole for NOK 30,000.

long live the king of the people!!

King Haakon VII - King of norway 1905-1957


Haakon VII was King of Norway from 1905 to 1957. He belonged to the princely house of Schleswig-Holstein-Sonderburg-Glücksburg and was born as Prince Carl of Denmark. Prince Carl was the son of King Frederik VIII of Denmark and Princess Lovisa of Sweden, brother of Christian X of Denmark and grandson of Christian IX of Denmark.

Following a November plebiscite, he accepted the offer and was formally elected King of Norway by the Storting. He took the Old Norse name Haakon and ascended to the throne as Haakon VII, becoming the first independent Norwegian monarch since 1387



King Haakon VII ubtj — ImgBB



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Haakon VII of Norway - Wikipedia

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