from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- proper n. An island in the South Atlantic that is a British dependency of Saint Helena.
Later in the same day Admiral Lyon directed that when the Cumberland, which had just left Freetown after refuelling at the end of her abortive search for the German ships reported to have been assembling off Ascension Island (see page 62), rejoined the Commodore off Rio, the Ajax and
Any strengthening of the Cape Town-Freetown trade route, he reasoned in his War Diary, would probably mean the British would use St. Helena and Ascension Island as auxiliary bases as much as Freetown and Cape Town.
After destroying the Clement, Captain Langsdorff kept to his plan of withdrawing quickly to the eastward to pass south of Ascension Island and north of St. Helena, and by 1st October, the day after the sinking, the Graf Spee had already covered a quarter of the distance.
But there was little respite, for on the 24th the Naval Attaché at Buenos Aires signalled to the Commodore and to the Commander-in-Chief, South Atlantic, that "according to reliable source" arrangements had been made for a number of German ships — which might include the Luft Hansa carrier Westfalen, the Poseidon, a U-boat, the General Artigas and the Monte Pascoal to meet at a position south-west of Ascension Island on the 28th.
When that was successfully accomplished, he proposed withdrawing at high speed to the eastward before the enemy could bring up their warships, pass between Ascension Island and St. Helena, and go south to attack shipping on the Cape of Good Hope route.
The Graf Spee then altered course eastward to pass between Ascension Island and St. Helena, as Langsdorff had previously planned.