The Algier, classified as a motor ship, laden with a mixed cargo of 302 tons of copper, 228 tons of tin, 130 bottles of mercury & 11 Studebaker motor cars, 1654 GRT, built 1938 Helsingørs Jernskibs-og Maskinbyggeri A/S. Helsingør, Denmark, owner Det Forenede D/S (DFDS), Copenhagen, Denmark, registered in Copenhagen, Denmark, twenty three persons on board, at least one of which was a passenger.
This vessel in passage from New York, U. S. A. for Copenhagen, Denmark, via Oslo, Norway was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U38 under the command of Heinrich Liebe 15 miles NNW of Foula during the night of March 20th/21st 1940. U38 first attacked the Algier at 23.24 on the 20th, but the torpedo missed, a further torpedo fired by U38 at 01.05 on the 21st from a stern tube hit the Algier in the stern and she sank stern first with a list to port within approx 10 minutes. The personnel on board took to a lifeboat and were picked up close to the position of the sinking by the British trawler Manx King and were landed at Scalloway later the same day. Five souls were lost, including the one known passenger, eighteen were saved.
A Naval hydrographic survey on August 19th 1977 was unable to locate the wreck at this position, but unable to conclusively disprove it either.