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The Ohio & Malta (Paperback)

The Legendary Tanker That Refused to Die

Maritime WWII

By Michael Pearson
Imprint: Pen & Sword Maritime
Pages: 176
Illustrations: 32 black and white
ISBN: 9781848845213
Published: 4th April 2011
Last Released: 31st January 2022



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During the dark days of WW2 Malta became the lynchpin of the Allied campaign in the Mediterranean and North African theatres and a vital base from which to attack Axis convoys supplying Rommel's Panzer Armee in Libya. Malta was, however, extremely difficult to keep supplied, (particularly with oil), and by the summer of 1942 the Island was close to surrender; the Pedestal convoy of august that year was literally the last chance.

On entering the Mediterranean the convoy was subjected to prolonged ferocious air and submarine attacks and suffered terrific losses both in warship escorts and merchantmen. OHIO, being the only tanker, was marked for particular attention, and during the course of her voyage suffered a direct hit from a torpedo, direct bomb hits, any number of near-misses, and was struck by two Luftwaffe aircraft shot down while attacking her. Despite her engines being dead and her hull practically broken in two, she was towed into Grand Harbour by three destroyers and a minesweeper with her vital cargo virtually intact.

As Promoted in

Shipping - Today & Yesterday Magazine, December 2021

As promoted in

Shipping Today and Yesterday, May 2017


Ships Monthly

So outstanding is this book in the telling of one of the most 'iconic' actions of Second World War that it cannot be overlooked.
It would be safe to describe this book as a real page-turner, the story brought to life through accounts of those involved as well as drawing on official archives. Well illustrated, the book also includes diagrams, charts, maps and appendices. It is a 'must read' for those interested in the story of the Ohio's incredible part in Malta's wartime history.

Briatin at War

A true tale of heroism and ingenuity.

World Ship Review - September 2011

THis is an excellent read and I would highly recommend this book to our readers.

Shipping Toyday & Yesterday

This book tells the tale of a single ship. In bringing Operation Pedestal to life in a thrilling and readable style, Michael Pearson skillfully draws the reader into the events aboard other ships at key moments in the voyage.

He also includes just about each and every man who played a key role at various times. All the facts and figures are there including brief technical details of every ship.

For those who wish to study many pages of bibliography, his account is also exceedingly well researched and I congratulate him on a job well done!

WW2 Re-enactors magazine

Popular Publishers Pen & sword have a rich backlist that is well worth mining. Here they have dug out one of those gems.

It is an impressive number, this book is well written and well researched testimonial to their courage.

The Naval Review NHCRA

About Michael Pearson

Michael Pearson has had a lifelong interest in maritime history and shipping. He worked in the shipping industry in the city of London for over twenty years. He now researches history full time. He lives at Westcliffe-on-Sea, Essex.

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