Empire Gem


Basically a new vessel when sunk, the tanker Empire Gem was torpedoed by the U-66 on 23 January 1942. The torpedo struck on her starboard side, igniting her cargo of gasoline and igniting the night sky. The vessel continued to cruise for three more hours before she was anchored off Hatteras. The stern section eventually tore loose from fatigue to sink nearby. The large bow section is inverted and intact, rising 20 feet off the bottom with debris off to the port side. The stern is upright and intact, and many artifacts have been recovered from its interior including the steering station, portholes, and cage lamps. The stern guns lay off the starboard side in the sand in 140 feet.


Lat: 35 01.783 N

Long: 75 28.502 W

Depth of wreck

140 feet

Size of wreck

Length: 463 feet

Beam: 61 feet