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Art Marine

HMS Cossack - Anthony Cowland

HMS Cossack - Anthony Cowland

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HMS Cossack, a Tribal Class Destroyer, was completed in Newcastle in 1938. In February 1940 she was sent to Norway where she participated in the ‘Altmark Incident’. The Altmark was a German Tanker aboard which were 299 British merchant seamen imprisoned after their ships had been sunk by the German pocket battleship Graf Spee in the Atlantic Ocean.
 
HMS Cossack intercepted the Altmark, which sought refuge in Jossingfjord.  However, despite being in neutral Norwegian waters and being guarded by Norwegian naval escorts, HMS Cossack was given leave by the Admiralty to board the Altmark in order to free the prisoners. The Norwegian government subsequently protested about the breach of their neutrality and demanded the return of the prisoners. However, after the German invasion of Norway in early April 1940, this situation rapidly changed with Norway joining the Allies.
 
In October 1941, whilst escorting a convoy from Gibraltar to the UK, 
HMS Cossack was torpedoed by a German submarine U-563, was damaged and subsequently lost in bad weather whilst returning to Gibraltar under tow.
 
This painting was used to illustrate the cover of the book ‘the Gathering Storm. The Naval War September 1939 – April 1940 by  Geirr H Haarr
 
Original oil on canvas board signed lower left.  24 x 18 inches (61cm  x 46cm)
A larger image is available on request.

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