The cover of this week’s Part of Shipping Wonders of the World shows the Majestic in dry dock. The Majestic was formerly the Bismarck and was built by Blohm and Voss, of Hamburg, in 1921. Her tonnage was 56,599 and her dimensions 915 ft 6 in by 100 ft 1 in by 58 ft 2 in. She was placed out of commission in February 1936.
EIGHT AIR-LOCKS, each weighing twenty-five tons, were secured by steel ropes to the bottom of the German battleship Konig Albert before she could be refloated. She lay in deep water, her stern being 126 feet and her bow 138 feet below the surface. The ship’s bottom was divided into six sections, each made air-tight. The work was begun in November 1934 and the battleship was raised, after eight months’ work, in July 1935. On April 29, 1936, the Konig Albert left Scapa Flow for Rosyth Dockyard to be broken up.
The cover of part 43 shows the Kaiserin on her way to Rosyth for breaking up.
The entrances to many ports must be kept free from silt, and without the ugly but efficient dredgers and hoppers that keep the channels clear even the greatest ports might fall into disuse. There is nothing ornamental about the dredger, yet without her the passage of ships, whether sailing or steam, would often be impossible. To many great ports the dredger is an essential craft, especially to those ports which are situated some distance up a river. This chapter is by C Hamilton Ellis.
The cities of Amsterdam and Rotterdam are not only unusual and picturesque, but they are also vital centres of a great maritime nation and among the most active ports in Europe. This chapter is by A C Hardy and is the seventh article in the series on Great Ports of the World.
A busy scene on the River Ij. The port is linked with the sea on one side by the North Sea Canal, and on the other side by the canal locks to artificial channels in what was formerly the Zuider Zee. The North Sea Canal is capable of taking the largest ships likely to use it and is at present 246 feet wide with a depth of 41 feet. The above photograph shows in the centre the Myrmidon, a twin-screw vessel of 6,663 tons gross at Amsterdam. This ship was built in 1930 and is owned by the Ocean Steamship Co Ltd.
At Sea in the Middle Ages
In the nine hundred years from AD 600 to 1500 ships developed from the Viking galleys of the Scandinavian shores to the caravels of Columbus and other famous navigators. In many ways this period was the most adventurous in maritime history. Modern-day conditions for the crew are luxurious compared with those that prevailed in medieval times. Bad food, dishonesty and exposure to appalling weather constituted the lot of the sailor in those days; yet courage and determination, those qualities which are inseparable from the sea, overcame those difficulties. The sailors in those early ships helped to found a great tradition. This chapter is by Lieut.-Com. E Keble Chatterton. A sequel to this article appears in part 34.
Dredgers and Hoppers - 2
IN THE HEART OF LONDON opposite the Houses of Parliament, a grab dredger is seen in the photograph on the left. This vessel, the Port of London Authority dredger No. 8, flies a large flag to show that dredging operations are in progress. The existence of the Port of London is dependent on the activities of its dredgers.
A DREDGING OUTPUT of 750 tons an hour is given by the bow well self-propelling bucket dredger Oliver Bury, shown in the centre photograph. She is 165 feet long, with a beam of 37 feet and a depth of 12 ft 6 in. She dredges to a depth of 48 feet and her bucket capacity if 21 cubic feet. The bucket dredger is the descendant of the Dutch mud dredger, invented in the seventeenth century. The mud dredger had a series of flat paddles operating on an endless belt. In the modern version buckets replace the paddles.
AN INDIAN SUCTION HOPPER DREDGER, the Balari, is seen in the lower photograph at work
On one of the many bars in the river Hooghly, below Calcutta. The bed of this great river is constantly shifting and, although dredgers are always busy, a special service of pilots is necessary to keep pace with the continual altering of the navigable channels. The Hooghly is the western arm of the delta of the River Ganges and flows into the Bay of Bengal.
Mariehamn’s Grain Fleet
On the counters of most of the large sailing ships of the world appear the name of Mariehamn, a tiny port set in the Aland Islands of the Baltic Sea. Every year its famous vessels bring cargoes of wheat from Australia to England. The ships of the grain fleet are among the most interesting that have ever sailed the Seven Seas. Captain Gustaf Erikson of Finland is largely responsible for the continued existence of the famous grain fleet of sailing ships. This article is by W L A Derby.
The Perils of Sealing
There are few occupations more perilous or more profitable than hunting for seals among the dangerous ice-floes of the North Atlantic. Many of the sturdy sealing-ships have been destroyed by the tremendous pressure of the moving ice. This article is by E E Mills-Joyce and is concluded in part 25.
Moored to the Pines
MOORED TO THE PINES and to ring-bolts on the rocky shore at Mariehamn. The Killoran, shown in this photograph, is a steel barque of 1,817 tons gross, and was built in 1900 by the Alisa Shipbuilding Co, Troon, Ayrshire. She is 261 ft 6 in long with a beam of 39 ft 2 in and a moulded depth of 24 ft 4 in.
The Killoran is also illustrated on the cover of part 10.
Mariehamn’s Grain Fleet: Photogravure Supplement
THE BEAUTY OF SWELLING CANVAS is seen in this striking photograph. It was taken in 1933 from the lee side of the Herzogin Cecilie, through the perfect arch of the foresail. One of the largest vessels in the Mariehamn grain fleet, the Herzogin Cecilie, 3,111 tons gross, went ashore near Salcombe (Devon) in April 1936.
The Herzogin Cecilie is also featured in an article in part 4.
The Archibald Russell
FLYING THE FINNISH FLAG, a blue cross of a white ground, the Archibald Russell makes the journey to Australia in ballast. A steel four-masted barque of 2,354 tons gross, she was built at Greenock in 1905. She has a length of 291 ft 4 in, a beam of 42 ft 11 in, and a depth of 24 feet.
Loading Wheat at Melbourne
LOADING WHEAT AT MELBOURNE. This photograph, taken on December 14, 1929, shows the four-masted barques Beatrice, 2,104 tons gross (in the foreground), Pommern (see below), and Melbourne, 2,691 tons gross. The Melbourne sank off the Fastnet Rock, south of Ireland, after collision with the oil-tanker Seminole on July 1, 1932. She was built at Port Glasgow in 1892.
BOUND FOR MARIEHAMN, the Pommern, a steel four-masted barque of 2,376 tons gross, is seen in this photograph in the Thames estuary. The Pommern was built in 1903 by J Reid & Co Ltd, at Glasgow. She is 310 ft 7 in long and has a beam of 43 ft 5 in and a depth of 24 ft 6 in.
A Flemish Carrack
A RIGGED MODEL OF A FIFTEENTH CENTURY FLEMISH CARRACK made by R Morton Nance. The hull is carvel-built and is strengthened by wales or ridges on either side. The vertical skids on the carrack’s side are for protection when lying alongside wharves during loading or unloading. A squaresail is carried on the foremast, while on the mizenmast is a lateen sail.