Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Recent Updates to the Merchant Shipping Photography Collection

Several photographs from the William Lind Collection (held at the Ballast Trust) have been digitised and added to our Flickr account. The recent updates include two photographs of the S.S. Columbia, pictured below.


The S.S. Columbia's eventful history tells a tale of the increasing popularity of transnational travel and of conflict between world powers at the turn of the century.

Built for the Hamburg American Line by Laird Brothers of Birkenhead in 1889, the ship was sold to the Spanish government in 1898 for use as a troopship in the Spanish-American War. During its time under Spanish ownership it was named "Rapido". One year later it was sold back to the Hamburg American Line and returned to its original name. The Columbia was then sold to the Russian Voluntary Fleet in 1904, becoming the cruiser "Terek". It was used for troop transport during the Russo-Japanese War, before being scrapped in 1907. 

You can view the merchant shipping album, and many other fascinating images, by clicking the link to our Flickr page below. 


~ Joseph Heffernan, Volunteer


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Thursday, September 4, 2014

Merchant Shipping

I am currently volunteering at the Ballast Trust where I have begun scanning and uploading some of the merchant shipping photographs held at the Ballast Trust from the William Lind Collection.

The picture below depicts one of the photographs from the William Lind collection.


This is the S.S "Amerika" built by Harland & Wolff, Belfast, in 1905.  Her story begins in 1910 where "Amerika" was the first ship to carry an extra-tariff restaurant, created by Charles Mews's of Ritz Carlton fame.

In 1912 she transmitted an iceberg warning just hours before the RMS Titanic struck the fatal iceberg that caused it to sink. In 1914, with the outbreak of WW1, "Amerika" hid in Boston util the Americans entered the war where she was renamed "America", and carried troops across the Atlantic.

Check out the Ballast Trust's flicker account for more photographs and other interesting stories by clicking the link here.

~ Joanne Savage, Volunteer




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Friday, August 23, 2013

Friday photo - Wemyss Bay Pier

Something a little different for this week's Friday photo. A great image of Wemyss Bay Pier featuring the following paddle steamers:

  • Largs built by Wingate & Co, Whiteinch, 1864
  • Lancelot built by Robert Duncan & Co, Port Glasgow, 1868
  • Lady Gertrude built by Blackwood & Gordon, Port Glasgow, 1872. 
  • Argyle built by Barclay, Curle & Co, 1866.

Wemyss Bay Pier

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Friday, August 16, 2013

Friday photo - Windsor Castle

More images from the paddle steamer album have been added by our Project Scotland volunteeer this week to Flickr. Including this one of the Windsor Castle built by Caird & Co, Greenock, circa 1860.

Edit: Apparently the Caird & Co ship was built in 1859 and sank in 1860; since we have another photo of this ship dated 1889 (though we don't know when or how that date was attached), this may be a different Windsor Castle - most likely the 1875 ship built by Thomas B Seath of Rutherglen.

Windsor Castle

There is a model of the 1859 Windsor Castle on display in the McLean Museum, details here.

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Friday, August 2, 2013

Friday photo - Victoria

Between 1834 and 1961, there were 23 Clyde-built ships which were given the name Victoria; nine of these were paddle steamers.

This is one of them.


I believe this is the 1886 Victoria, built by Blackwood and Gordon, of Paisley and Port Glasgow.

This Victoria went on fire on 17th September, 1893, while lying at the Broomielaw in Glasgow. The fire-brigade had to use two small ferryboats in fighting the fire, and a great deal of damage was done. The ship then spent a few years working on the Thames before returning to the Clyde, and was ultimately scrapped in 1900.

Of the eight other paddle steamers named Victoria: one has no location given; two were owned by the Alloa, Stirling & Kincardine Steamboat Company; one worked in Aberdeen and Newcastle, and later in Portugal; one sailed on Lake Lucerne; one worked in Australia, and later in Japan; one worked along the south coast of England; and one sailed the Channel crossing from Newhaven to Dieppe, and was wrecked in 1887 due to fog, with the loss of 19 lives.

And that's not mentioning the ships named Princess Victoria, Queen Victoria, or Royal Victoria...

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