This week’s cover shows the Thames tug Vivacity passing under a bridge. The picture is particularly interesting because it shows the tug in the act of lowering her funnel, which would otherwise be too high to clear the bridge safely.
For long the Dutch were the keenest rivals of Great Britain in maritime interests, particularly when the trade routes to the East were being opened up. Their shrewdness and commercial sense have won the Dutch an important position in world shipping. Industrious, thrifty and businesslike, the Dutch have been a leading maritime nation for many years.
A description of the Comanchee, one of the most interesting and important tankers flying the Red Ensign. She was delivered to her owners, the Anglo-American Oil Company, by John Brown & Company, early in 1936. The Comanchee has frequently to discharge complete cargoes at Manchester and her dimensions were largely governed by the dimensions of the locks on the Manchester Ship Canal.
Although Auckland, in North Island, is the largest city in New Zealand, Wellington, also in North Island, is the capital of the Dominion and the chief transhipment port. The harbour of Wellington, set in magnificent scenery, is called Port Nicholson.
In recent years the introduction of the cargo liner has dealt a heavy blow at tramp shipping, which was regarded as the backbone of the British Merchant Service. Technical improvements, however, promise partly to restore the tramp’s lost position in a rapidly changing shipping world. To the uninitiated the words “tramp steamer” usually imply a rather decrepit little ship, somewhat in need of a fresh coat of paint, in which the crew is over-worked and has to endure perpetual petty discomforts.
BEGUN IN AD 67 BY THE ROMAN EMPEROR NERO but not completed until 1893, the Corinth Canal considerably shortened communications in the Mediterranean and converted the Gulf of Corinth into a thoroughfare. The length of the canal is 6,939 yards, or just under four miles. Its relatively narrow width (25 yards) makes it impracticable for vessels to pass one another. The ship illustrated is HMS Duncan, leading the First Destroyer Flotilla through the canal. The Duncan, launched in 1932, has a displacement of 1,400 tons, a length between perpendiculars of 317 ft 9 in, a beam of 33 feet, and a draught of 8 ft 8 in. She has just passed under the bridge that carries the railway between Athens and the Peloponnesos.
The plate had previously appeared as the cover to Part 7.
From the days of ancient Greece and Rome the question of a canal across the Isthmus of Corinth had been seriously considered. A canal was begun in AD 67, but it was not until 1893 that the project was realized and a new link in European maritime communication was made. Although the Corinth Canal cannot rank with the Suez or Panama Canal, it is not without significance among the trade routes of Europe, and it certainly deserves a place in this work. This chapter is the thirteenth article in the series on World Waterways.
Of all the heroic adventures that occurred with mystery ships during the war of 1914-18, none were more exciting than the exploits of the North Sea fishing smacks which decoyed and sank enemy submarines.