Escort Carrier
Ex USS Jamaica ACV/AVG-43
Became Saltra 1948.


Shah (D-21) was built as an Ruler class escort carrier in the USA at Seattle-Tacoma. She was named USS Jamaica ACV/AVG-43. Laid down 13 November 1942, launched 21 April 1943, she was transferred and commissioned in the Royal Navy on 27 September 1943 as HMS Shah.

The Ruler class ships were the third group of escort carriers built in the USA for the Royal Navy, and were generally similar to the preceding "Attacker" Class. The modifications carried out to the earlier class after their arrival in the UK were incorporated in the "Ruler" Class during construction. Many of the class were used as amphibious support carriers, taking part in the invasion of Southern France. Others supported Eastern Fleet operations against Burma and Malaya, and some served with the British Pacific Fleet as escorts for the Fleet Train.

HMS Shah's wartime service included convoy escort and fighter carrier supported Eastern Fleet operations against Burma and Malaya 1945.

Shah was returned to the USN on 6 December 1945, became mercantile Saltra 1948. Scrapped at Buenes Aires 1966

Battle Honours
Burma 1945

No information on Captains.

Squadrons and Aircraft

FAA squadrons embarked Dates Aircraft type
851 June-Sept 1945 Avenger I/Wildcat V
804 April-May 1945 Hellcat II
888 April-May 1945 Hellcat II
800 May 1945 Hellcat I/II
845 June-Sept 1945 Avenger I
1700 Aug 1945 Walrus I

Associations and Reunions
No information

Carrier name HMS Shah
Built as USS Jamaica ACV/AVG-43.
Became Saltra 1948
Class Ruler
Type Fighter and Assault Escort Carrier (US built)
Ships in Class Ameer, Arbiter, Atheling, Begum, Emperor, Empress, Khedive, Nabob, Patroller, Premier, Puncher, Queen, Rajah, Ranee, Reaper, Ruler, Shah, Slinger, Smiter, Speaker, Thane, Trouncer, Trumpeter
Launched Laid down 13 November 1942, Launched 21 April 1943. Transferred 27 September 1943, Commissioned 27 September 1943
Tonnage 8,333 tons

Gross displacement 14,000 tons

Load 5667 tons

Engines 2 x Foster-Wheeler boilers; 2 x Westinghouse geared turbines at 8500 shp, 1 shaft
Speed in Knots 18 knots 
Armament Gun 2 x 1 x 5"/38-cal DP 8 x 2 x 40mm AA 27-35 x 1 x 20mm AA 
Crew Complement 646 Officers & Ratings including Air Group
Length (ft/inches) 496
Beam (ft/inches) 69' 6"
Draught (ft/inches) 23'3"
Flight Deck length (ft/inches) 470'
Flight Deck width (ft/inches) 70'
Number of aircraft carried 18-24
Fate of carrier  Scrapped at Buenes Aires 1966

World Aircraft Carrier Lists and Photo Gallery - from 1913 to 2000. Naval History Information Center, Haze Gray & Underway
Sturtivant, R & Ballance, T  (1994). 'The Squadrons of the Fleet Air Arm' Published by Air Britain (Historians) Ltd, 1994 ISBN: 0 85130 223 8

The World’s Warships 1941 by Francis E. McMurtrie (1944). Janes London 1941 1st ed. 

Jane's Fighting Ships of World War II by Francis E. McMurtrie (Editor)(1984). 320 pages. Crescent Books; ISBN: 0517679639

Navsource online- Escort Carriers Photo Archive: HMS SHAH   
        Last Modified: 23-2-2001


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