HMCS Louisbourg

There have been 2 vessels named Louisbourg in the Royal Canadian Navy.

HMCS Louisbourg (1st of the name) (K143)

Built at Québec City, Quebec, and commissioned there on October 2, 1941, the Flower Class corvette Louisburg arrived at Halifax, Nova Scotia, on October 15. She was assigned to Sydney Force until mid-January 1942, when she was transferred to Newfoundland Command. On February 1, she left St. John’s, Newfoundland for Londonderry, Northern Ireland as escort to convoy SC.67, another of whose escorts, HMCS Spikenard, was lost.

After a long refit at Halifax from March 27 to June 27 1942, Louisburg made 2 more round trips to Londonderry before being assigned duties in connection with Operation TORCH, the invasion of North Africa. She arrived at Londonderry on September 23, and then proceeded to the Humber, United Kingdom, for fitting of extra anti-aircraft armament, with the work completed on October 18. On December 9, 1942, while anchored at Londonderry, she was accidentally rammed by the sloop HMS Bideford, necessitating 5 weeks’ repairs at Belfast, Northern Ireland.  Louisburg had scarcely commenced her Operation TORCH duties when, on February 6, 1943, she was sunk by Italian aircraft east of Oran, Algeria, while escorting a convoy from Gibraltar to Bône. Thirty-eight of her ship’s company were lost.

HMCS Louisbourg (2nd of the name) (K401)

Commissioned at Québec City on December 13, 1943, the second Flower Class corvette named Louisbourg sailed to Halifax in advance of completion in order to escape the freeze-up. Arriving in late December, she was not ready for service until February 1944. In March, she went to Bermuda for work-ups, and upon returning to Halifax was assigned as an unallocated unit to Western Approaches Command, Londonderry.

She sailed for the United Kingdom on April 23, 1944, and spent the next 4 months on escort duties associated with the Normandy invasion. That September, she was allocated to Escort Group 41, Plymouth, United Kingdom, and in March 1945 returned home for refit at Saint John, New Brunswick.

Upon completion of this refit, she was paid off at Sorel, Quebec, on June 25 and placed in reserve there. She was sold in 1947 to the Dominican Navy and renamed Juan Alejandro Acosta. Deleted from the active list in 1978, she was driven ashore in a hurricane on August 31, 1979.

Battle honours

  • Atlantic 1941-1942, 1944-1945
  • Normandy 1944
  • English Channel 1944-1945

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