Completed 1945 as Marline Hitch for US Government. 1946 sold and renamed Don Aurelio. 1951 renamed Normarti. 1957 converted to LNG vessel. 1957 sold to British Methane and renamed "METHANE PIONEER". In charter for STUK. 1967 sold and renamed Aristotle. 1972 converted to LPG storage vessel at Recife Brazil. 1972 scrapped.
Also known as
Marline Hitch
Don Aurelio
IMO number
Call sign
Construction number
4.830 ton
Length overall
Year of construction
Year of renaming/broken up
Service for Shell
1957 to 1967
Flag state
Home port




Date Visitor Anecdote
10/30/2016 - 12:59 Angus Hardern

This ship was the first to arrive at Canvey Island with it's cargo of LNG on behalf of the North Thames Gas Board.
My father was the Public Relations Officer for the NTGB and his job was to deal with the understandable concerns of the residents of Canvey Island - this was the first time LNG had been transported in this manner and who knows what might happen if anything untoward happened.
At about 4.00 in the morning our phone at home rang and my father took the call, to be told the ship had docked but that there had been a fire on the docksidea??a??..

In the event the fire was a minor blaze entirely unconnected with the arrival of the Methane Pioneer but it certainly galvanized father that night.

07/07/2014 - 16:42 Eli M Feist

As a group working then on LNG processes at Norris Bros [Burgess Hill --now
Haywards Heath,Sussex], we made a "state visit" to the Methane Pioneer in summer 1959 .Some of the gas pipes were above deck and covered with ice -- with great glee we washed /refreshed our faces with the cold ice - 'twas a hot humid day.Somebody wanted to melt the ice in his hands and make a cold drink ; but the majority decision was - the ice is not clean enough for drinking... E M Feist,Ein Zurim ,Israel 79510

12/11/2011 - 21:04 Bob Montgomery

Joined her at Canvey Island October 1961 my first ship as EDH after a 13 month voyage on the ANADARA. We were supposed to be heading to Galvaston but instead after the discharge was completed it was decided to lay her up so we sailed to Cardiff where she was left. I think it was because the Methane Princess or Progress was being brought into service
What I do remember was that she had a lot of USN effects from being a converted navy vessel but in general I think she would have been a good ship to be a crew member of but a couple of weeks is,nt really enough time to form a proper opinion at least I can say I have been a member of THE FIRST GAS TANKER
I read an article on Google about how she was designed very interesting???