Edited by board administrator April 7, 2017, 9:33 am
Thank you for your inquiry.
I don’t know what you would consider to be an “official” photograph of NEW BERN VICTORY. During World War II the U.S. Coast Guard often took photographs of individual ships arriving or departing U.S. ports but I have not found a Coast Guard photograph of this ship.
I did find five online photographs of NEW BERN VICTORY:
The first photograph is that of the ship in her wartime configuration; note the gun mounted at the stern. During wartime, ships’ names were generally painted out so there is no name on the stern. I can see a name board above and between the two lifeboats but the name is illegible in this image.
The remaining photographs are of NEW BERN VICTORY in postwar appearance and under all four of her postwar names. The second photograph is of the ship while named CONSTANTIA (1947-1961, South African flag); the third is while named SOUTH AFRICAN VANGUARD (1961-1966, South African flag); the fourth is while named S. A. VANGUARD (1966-1969, South African flag); and the fifth is while named ISABENA (1969-1972, when she sank, Panamanian flag). For a detailed history of the ship, see http://mariners-l.co.uk/vicshipsN.html and scroll to the name of the ship.
You can copy, paste and save any or all of these images to your computer, then print as JPG files. I don’t know what the quality of the printed images would be.
For an actual photograph of the ship see the sources of photographs of World War II-era merchant ships found at this web page from the American Merchant Marine at War website: http://www.usmm.org/photosource.html. In particular I suggest you contact the Mariners Museum Research Library and Archives in Newport News, Virginia, the fourth entry on the above list. You can contact the Museum library by e-mail at library@MarinersMuseum.org or call 757-591-7782 for more information. If the Mariners Museum (or any of the other sources) has an image, there would be a fee for reproduction, handling and mailing.
For your information NEW BERN VICTORY was constructed in 75 days by the Bethlehem-Fairfield Shipyard in Baltimore between January 15 and March 31, 1945. See http://www.shipbuildinghistory.com/shipyards/emergencylarge/bethfairfield.htm and scroll to hull number 2453. The notes at the end of this entry state that the ship was wrecked and scrapped in 1972 while other sources state that she sank in July 1972. Apparently she sank in shallow waters; the notes at http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/297148/title/s-a-vanguard/cat/510 mention that the hulk was struck by another ship, causing that second ship to sink also. It is possible that both ships, as hazards to navigation, were later raised and then scrapped.
Ron Carlson, Webmaster
Armed Guard / Merchant Marine website