Marker Text: S. S. James Oglethorpe launched on November 20, 1942, during World War II, the first of 88 Liberty Ships built by Southeastern Shipbuilding (approximately two miles downriver from here). Setting sail from New York in a convoy bound for Liverpool, she was torpedoed by a German U-boat on March 16, 1943, and was lost the next morning along with 44 of her 74-man crew. Liberty Ships were merchant vessels built quickly and efficiently in numbers high enough to overwhelm German efforts to blockade U.S. ports and disrupt the flow of supplies to Allied forces in Europe. The Liberty Ship-building program marked Georgia’s most important contribution to the Battle of the Atlantic. It produced 173 ships built in yards in Savannah and Brunswick and mobilized nearly 62,000 workers statewide.
Erected by the Georgia Historical Society and the Georgia International and Maritime Trade Center Authority