Search the Collection
Advanced Search

RMS NARKUNDA and RMS ORVIETO at Circular Quay Friday 10 August 1923

Date: 1923
83 x 108 x 2 mm
Medium: Emulsion on glass
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Photographer Frederick Garner Wilkinson
Object Name: Glass plate negative
Object No: 00040918

User Terms

    RMS NARKUNDA and RMS ORVIETO were photographed at Circular Quay on Friday 10 August 1923. Both vessels were Royal Mail ships involved in the transportation of passengers and mail to Australia during the first half of the 20th century.
    SignificanceThis photograph demonstrates the role of Royal Mail ships NARKUNDA and ORVIETO in Australian trade and communication during the first half of the 20th century.

    It is part of the F G Wilkinson Photograph Collection, comprising more than 700 glass plate negatives of ships in Sydney Harbour between 1919 and 1936. The collection provides an extensive and well-documented coverage of the changing styles of shipping in the port of Sydney before the gradual decline of the coastal trade, and in a period which was probably the peak reached by commercial shipping in Australia. The backgrounds also reveal the changing face of the city and harbour foreshores.
    HistoryRMS ORVIETO was built by Workman Clark at Belfast in 1909 and chartered by the Orient Steam Navigation Co until 1919 when it was taken over by the P&O Line. The passenger ship of 12,133 tons could accommodate 1117 people.

    In 1909 it conducted its maiden voyage from London to Sydney and Melbourne via the Suez Canal. During World War I the ship was used a minelayer and converted into an armed American cruiser. In 1919 under the P&O line ORVIETO resumed the passenger run between England and Australia, operating until 1930 when it was scrapped.

    NARKUNDA was a 16,500 ton gross steamer that was active on the Australian passenger service run. It was built by Caird & Co at Greenock in 1920 and was capable of accommodating 650 passengers and 277,090 cubic feet of grain and 103,000 cubic feet of insulated cargo. During World War II the vessel was used as a troop transport. On 14 November 1942 it was sunk by German bombers after it left Bougie, Algeria having delivered troops for the campaign in North Africa.
    Additional Titles

    Assigned title: RMS NARKUNDA and RMS ORVIETO at Circular Quay Friday 10 August 1923


    Collection title: F G Wilkinson Shipping Photographs Collection

    Related People

    Discuss this Object


    Please log in to add a comment.