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Second World War
Battle of the Atlantic  - The Battle of the St. Lawrence

The struggle on the Atlantic between Allied navies and German U-Boats (submarines) brought the naval war into Canada, turning the river and Gulf of St. Lawrence into a battleground. From 1942, German U-Boats sank 23 merchant and naval ships; improvements in anti-submarine defences ultimately stemmed these losses.

St. Lawrence Convoy
St. Lawrence Convoy

Canadian war artist Thomas Harold Beament's painting captures how close to shore some of the events in the battle of the St. Lawrence could be.

Beament, who served during the battle of the St. Lawrence, depicts both merchant ships and escorts - a Fairmile motor launch in the foreground, and a minesweeper on the far right. The confined waters of the river and Gulf of St. Lawrence complicated Allied naval operations, and underwater conditions made detecting submerged German submarines very difficult.

St. Lawrence Convoy
Painted by Harold Beament
Beaverbrook Collection of War Art
CWM 19710261-1049

St. Lawrence Convoy
HMCS Chaleur at Saint-Jean-Port-Joli, Quebec, 1939
Jig-Saw Puzzle, "Canadian Warship Captures First Italian Prize"
Crew Members, HMCS Bras D'Or
U-Boat U-190 Commissioning
HMCS Fort Ramsay
"Minor war vessels at Gaspé, 1942"
Bridge of Motor Launch
HMCS Raccoon
Funeral of Able Seaman Donald Bowser, HMCS Charlottetown
Burial at Sea
"Remember the Caribou and Her Gallant Crew"
Damaged Fairmile Motor Launch, 1944
The Torpedoing of HMCS Magog
Damage to HMCS Magog
Iced Up
HMCS Shawinigan
German U-Boat Navigation Handbook
German Map of the St. Lawrence