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Table top made from lid of Flag Locker off the Bridge of HMAS SYDNEY. Leg Timber from the HMAS ENCOUNTER, February 1934

Date: c 1963
Dimensions:
Overall: 517 x 494 x 365 mm, 5.2 kg
Medium: Wood, paper, metal, glass
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from the Women's Pioneer Society of Australasia
Object Name: Table
Object No: 00045838

User Terms

    Description
    This handmade wooden coffee table was built by S H Ravenscroft using timber from HMAS SYDNEY (I) and HMAS ENCOUNTER. The underside is decorated with souvenir relics relating to a number of historic vessels including HMS VICTORY, HMAS SYDNEY(I) and HMAS ENCOUNTER. It features a halfpenny pressed into the bottom, a black and white photograph of SMS EMDEN, a part of the Japanese midget submarine sunk in Sydney Harbour in 1942 and a paper knife made from Norfolk Island pine.
    SignificanceThis table demonstrates the production of souvenir items out of ship parts and other relics. It represents the vessels HMAS SYDNEY (I), HMS VICTORY and HMAS ENCOUNTER and how they have been commemorated by the general public .
    HistoryMr S H Ravenscroft was the landlord of Shirley House at 61 Market Street, the old premises of the Women's Pioneer Society. He crafted this tabletop of timber from the lid of a flag locker on the bridge of HMAS SYDNEY I, given to him when he visited Cockatoo Island in 1929 as SYDNEY was being broken up. The timber for the table's legs and skirting were taken from a portion of HMAS ENCOUNTER and were given to Mr Ravenscroft in 1929 around the same time that he received the SYDNEY relics.

    The table’s underside features material from HMS FOUDROYANT and Hapag Lloyd's IMPERATOR. Ravenscroft attached a black and white photograph of the German Cruiser EMDEN dated 1914, with the caption 'HMAS SYDNEY, the Australian ship which finished off the EMDEN'. Nuts and bolts from Charles Kingsford Smith's plane SOUTHERN CROSS were also attached by Ravenscroft along with a halfpenny pressed into a piece of steel at Plymouth Dockyard in 1914. Slivers of timber from Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson's HMS VICTORY were sealed in plastic and attached to the table. These pieces of wood were removed from one of VICTORY's cabins. A small piece of wood taken from the Japanese midget submarine sunk in Sydney Harbour on 31 May 1942 is attached to the table's underside as well.

    HMAS SYDNEY was one of three light cruisers built for the Royal Australian Navy in 1912. On 4 October 1913, SYDNEY entered Sydney Harbour in the company of six naval vessels that comprised the First Australian Fleet Unit. HMAS SYDNEY became known for its defeat of the German cruiser EMDEN in a heated battle near North Keeling Island on 9 November 1914. When SYDNEY was decommissioned in 1928 and sent to Cockatoo Island Dockyard in early 1929 for scrapping, the dockyard workers made a myriad of souvenirs from the ship's different materials, most notably the brass shells and timber deck. Souvenirs include but are not limited to ashtrays, bowls, mantle clocks, walking sticks, desk sets, and other household items.

    HMAS SYDNEY was a Chatham Class Light Cruiser built by the London-Glasgow Shipbuilding Company, Scotland. She was laid down in February, 1911 and launched on 29 August, 1912 by Lady Henderson, wife of Admiral Sir Reginald Henderson.

    Joining the battlecruiser HMAS AUSTRALIA at Portsmouth, SYDNEY was commissioned on 26 June, 1913. The two vessels then sailed for Australia in July, 1913 via St. Helena, Capetown and Mauritius, eventually making landfall at Albany, Western Australia for coaling on 19 September, 1913. In order to make their arrival all the more momentous the two ships were ordered to avoid major ports, travelling straight to Jervis Bay where the remainder of the the main Australian fleet, HMAS MELBOURNE, HMAS ENCOUNTER, and three newly built destroyers were at anchor. The fleet then sailed north on the short voyage to Sydney arriving in October, 1913.

    SYDNEY had been commissioned under the command of Captain John C. T. Glossop (1871-1934). The vessel's displacement was 5,400 tons, whilst her armament would ultimately consist of eight six-inch guns, one 13-pounder gun, four 3-pounder guns and two torpedo tubes. She was the sister ship to HMAS MELBOURNE and HMAS BRISBANE, having been completed second respectively. The 'Chatham Class' was a subclass to the 'Town Class' light cruisers of the Royal Navy. Known to Australians simply as the 'Sydney' Class, the 'Chatham Class' differed from other subcategories of the Town Class by having reduced deck armour in order to incorperate newly developed belt armour. Their six-inch guns were mounted in single turrets with no secondary armament other than her anti-aircraft weaponary that would be further increased during the First World War. The Chatham Class also had aircraft fitted during the War.

    Following a period spent in eastern Australian ports, SYDNEY proceeded to Singapore in March, 1914, to act as escort to the two new Royal Australian Navy submarines AE1 and AE2. Although the two submarines had managed to reach Singapore with comparatively little trouble, the next stage of the voyage to Australia would make up for this lack of incident. Soon after leaving port AE1 lost all power and SYDNEY was forced to take her in tow while repairs were carried out. In fierce currents the tow rope parted and AE1 was nearly rammed by AE2, which had to take drastic evasive action. As a result of this the helm of AE2 was found to be jammed and the two submarines were drifting helplessly out of control. SYDNEY had to cope with the situation but found that she herself was out of action as the parted tow rope had twisted itself around her rudder rendering the vessel immoveable. When going to the submarines' rescue she was unable to turn and very nearly rammed them.

    Captain Glossop ordered all three vessels to anchor until morning when a diver was put over to free the SYDNEY's rudder. AE1 was taken in tow once more and the flotilla got underway bound for Darwin. The flotilla entered Sydney harbour on the 24 May, 1914, where they were welcomed by the entire Australian fleet. SYDNEY spent the remainder of the pre-war months in Australian waters.

    On 3 August, 1914, SYDNEY was joined at Townsville, Queensland, by the destroyers HMAS WARREGO and HMAS YARRA before proceeding north to form a unit in Admiral Patey's Pacific Squadron. Following the outbreak of war the following day, SYDNEY operated in New Guinea and Pacific waters, taking part in the brief Allied campaign against the German Pacific posessions and carrying out a series of punative patrols. Highlights during this period included the capture of Rabaul (the capital of German New Guinea) between 9 and 11 September, 1914 and the destruction of the Angaur Island (now part of Palau) Wireless Station on 26 September, 1914.

    In October, 1914, SYDNEY and her sister ship MELBOURNE detatched from the Flagship HMAS AUSTRALIA and returned to Australia to form part of the escort for the first ANZAC convoy, which consisted of thirty eight transports carrying 20, 000 men and 7,500 horses. The escort consisted of SYDNEY, MELBOURNE, the British armoured cruiser HMS MINOTAUR and the Japanese battlecruiser IBUKI. The convoy left Albany, Western Australia on 1 November, 1914, bound for the Middle East. It was timed to pass some fifty miles east of the Cocos Islands on the morning of 9 November, 1914.

    At 0620 on 9 November, wireless telegraphy operators in several transports and in the warships picked up signals in an unknown code, followed by a query from the Cocos Island Wireless Telegraphy Station asking 'What is that code?' It was, in fact, the German cruiser SMS EMDEN ordering her collier BURESK to join her at Point (sometimes called 'Port') Refuge (part of the Cocos Island Group). After some debate between the vessels over which of the escorts should be dispatched, it was decided that SYDNEY, as the warship nearest to Cocos, should be sent. Detatching itself from the convoy at 0700 SYDNEY was able to exceed her designed speed, arriving at Cocos at 0915 and spotting EMDEN some seven or eight miles distant. At a range of 10, 500 yards EMDEN opened fire and SYDNEY was soon under heavy fire. SYDNEY was, however, faster and better armed than her German opponent and by 1115 EMDEN lay wrecked on North Keeling Island, although it continued to resist. SYDNEY then left the scene to persue the BURESK and, having forced the collier to be scuttled by its crew, returned at 1300 to secure EMDEN's surrender. Four members of SYDNEY's crew had been killed, whilst twelve had been wounded.

    On 15 November, 1914, SYDNEY arrived in Colombo, Sri Lanka, and from there was ordered to proceed to Malta where she arrived on 3 December. She was then ordered to Bermuda to join the North American and West Indies Stations for patrol duty. For the next eighteen months SYDNEY was engaged in observing neutral ports in the Americas, mainly in the West Indies with Jamaica as a base and off Long Island with Halifax as a base and Squadron Headquarters at Bermuda. SYDNEY finally left Bermuda on 9 September, 1916, arriving in Devonport, England, on 19 September, and from there proceeded to Greenock, Scotland for refit.

    On 31 October, 1916, SYDNEY was temporarily attached to the 5TH BATTLE SQUADRON at Scapa Flow, Scotland. On 15 November, she sailed for Rosyth, Scotland, whereupon she joined the 2ND LIGHT CRUISER SQUADRON, consisting of the four sister ships HMS SOUTHAMPTON, HMS DUBLIN, HMAS MELBOURNE and HMAS SYDNEY, attached to the 2ND BATTLE SQUADRON of which HMAS AUSTRALIA was flagship. For the remainder of the War SYDNEY's duties were confined to routine North Sea patrols.

    On 4 May, 1917, while on patrol between the Humber Estuary and the mouth of the Firth, SYDNEY fought a running engagement with the German zeppelin L43. After both combatants had expended all of their ammunition to no avail they reportedly parted company on good terms. In August, SYDNEY commenced a three month refit at Chatham, England, during which she aquired the tripod mast that is now sited at Bradleys Head, Sydney. Of greater significance, however, was the fact that she was fitted with the first revolving aircraft launching platform to be installed onboard a warship.

    On arrival at Scapa Flow in December, 1917, SYDNEY's commanding officer, Captain J. S. Dumaresq (who took over from Glossop earlier in the year on 5 February) borrowed a Sopwith Pup that was then being operated from a fixed platform onboard HMS DUBLIN. On 8 December the aircraft was successfully launched from the SYDNEY's platform in a fixed position. It was the first aircraft to take off from an Australian warship. Nine days later the Pup flew off the platform while it was turned into the wind; the first time an aircraft had been launched from such a platform in a revolved position. Early in 1918, SYDNEY took onboard a Sopwith Camel as a replacement for the Sopwith Pup.

    On 1 June, 1918, as British forces entered enemy controlled waters, two German sea planes were sighted by SYDNEY at 0933, diving towards HMAS MELBOURNE. Both planes dropped bombs although no hits were scored. The SYDNEY's Sopwith Camel was launched at 0955, together with the MELBOURNE's at 1000 to find and engage the German planes. MELBOURNE's pilot Lieutenant L. B. Gibson, failed to locate the enemy sea planes and soon returned. SYDNEY's pilot, Lieutenant A. C. Sharwood, on the other hand, persued the Germans for nearly sixty miles before he was able to engage them, shooting one of them down and being forced to bail out himself when he failed to relocate the SYDNEY. Sharwood's claim of one enemy sea plane having been shot down was not recognized by the Admiralty on the grounds that there was no independent corroboration. The incident did, however, serve to confirm Dumaresq's faith in aircraft.

    SYDNEY was present at the surrender of the German Grand Fleet on 21 November, 1918. She sailed from Portsmouth on 9 April, 1919, for the return passage to Australia. Other than visits to New Guinea in 1922 and New Caledonia and the Solomons in 1927, SYDNEY spent the remainder of her seagoing career in home waters, serving as flagship to the Australian Squadron from September, 1924 until October, 1927. She paid off at Sydney on 8 May, 1928. On 10 January, 1929, she was delivered to Cockatoo Island, Western Australia for breaking up.

    HMAS ENCOUNTER was originally a Royal Navy light cruiser commissioned into the Royal Australian Navy on 1 July 1912 after serving in the Australian Squadron. ENCOUNTER served in the Pacific and Far East during World War I and was a training ship until it was paid off in 1920 and broken up in 1930-1931.

    HMS ENCOUNTER (originally a Royal Navy vessel) was a Challenger Class light cruiser built at Devon Dockyard, Plymouth, England. She was laid down on 28 January, 1901, launched on 18 June 1902 and commissioned on 21 November, 1905, under Captain C. F. Thursby, RN. ENCOUNTER was the fourth vessel built by the Royal Navy to bare the name. As a member of the Challenger Class, she was initially rated as a second-class protected cruiser, having no side armour, but an inbuilt armoured deck. The vessel's armament consisted of eleven 6-inch guns, eight 12-pounder guns, six 3-pounder guns and two 18-inch torpedo tubes. Her displacement was 5880 tons and her crew compliment was 475.

    On New Years Eve, 1905, ENCOUNTER sailed for the antipodes to join the Royal Navy's Australian Squadron and thereafter carried out the whole of her service east of the Suez Canal. The Australian Station, established in March, 1859, was the Royal Navy command responsible for the waters around the Australian continent and British and Australian colonial possessions in the South-Pacific. ENCOUNTER spent her first six years of service in these waters, regularly visiting Australian and New Zealand ports and the Pacific islands. Her duties remained uneventful during this time.

    In 1913 the Australia Station was passed to the command of the newly formed Royal Australian Navy (RAN). It was around this time that ENCOUNTER was loaned to the RAN as a training vessel, pending the completion of HMAS BRISBANE. Volunteers were called for from the existing ship's company to form a nucleus crew, remaining for a further three years in the Australian service and receiving Australian rates of pay. Nearly a third of the men decided to stay behind. Officially commissioned into the RAN on 1 July, 1912, ENCOUNTER became Australia's first cruiser. Over the next two years she was actively employed in training the growing navy and showing the flag at ports all around the nation. On 4 October, 1913, she joined the remainder of the new Australian Fleet unit (comprising the battlecruiser Australia, the light cruisers SYDNEY and MELBOURNE, and destroyers PARRAMATTA, YARRA and WARREGO) as the contingent sailed prestigiously into Sydney Harbour.

    In the days prior to the outbreak of World War One, ENCOUNTER was with the remainder of the Australian Fleet operating in Queensland waters. On the receipt of the Admiralty warning order on 30 July, 1914, AUSTRALIA and ENCOUNTER returned to Sydney to replenish and complete repairs. War between the British and German empires began on 5 August and the following day ENCOUNTER sailed from Sydney and headed north. On 12 August, she intercepted and captured the steamer ZAMBEZI; an ex-British vessel under German control, which became the RAN's first wartime prize. A month later ENCOUNTER accompanied the successful Australian operation to capture German New Guinea, escorting the transport and store ships and providing covering fire during the advance of the Australian Military and Naval Expeditionary Force's advance from Herbertshöhe to Toma. This covering fire is generally regarded as the RAN's first offensive fire of the War. ENCOUNTER later took part in the search for the Australian submarine AE1 which went missing on 14 September, 1914.

    Even following the Allied capture of German New Guinea, the threat posed by the German East Asiatic Squadron under Vice Admiral Graf von Spee remained the most pressing problem for the Australian naval authorities. With the whereabouts of German vessels unknown, the Australian fleet remained on high alert and mistakes of identity were not uncommon. In actuality, von Spee had headed east across the Pacific and, in October, 1914, ENCOUNTER began patrol duties in the Fiji-Samoa area incase any of his ships should return. These patrols continued into 1915 and, despite being an unremarkable prize, one success of this time laid in the capture the small German schooner ELFREDE. In July, following a refit in Sydney, the cruiser sailed for Fanning Island in the north-Pacific where she landed a garrison for protection of the cable station. The Pacific cable had been cut by the German cruiser NÜRNBERG in September, 1914 and reports had reached the Australian Naval Board that the Germans might make another attempt. One of those serving onboard ENCOUNTER at this time was Boy First Class William Evan Allan, later to become Australia's last living veteran of active service during World War One.

    ENCOUNTER returned to her Fiji patrols until the end of 1915, when the Admiralty briefly employed her in similar duties off Malaya and the East Indies. In February, 1916, she was recalled to protect merchant shipping sailing around Cape Leeuwin in Western Australia. Several German commerce raiders had escaped into the Atlantic and it seemed likely that the importance of the transport and trade routes in Australian waters might encourage the enemy to extend their attacks. With almost the entire Australian Fleet employed overseas, it fell to ENCOUNTER and several cruisers of the Imperial Japanese Navy to provide the necessary convoy escort and patrols.

    In July, 1916, during a visit to an unnamed island off the coast of Western Australia, two bronze canons were discovered by ENCOUNTER officers Commander C. W. Stevens and Surgeon Lieutenant W. Roberts. Given that these guns were erroneously thought to be carronades (a short smoothbore, cast iron canon developed by the RN in the late eighteenth century), the decision was made to christen the island 'Carronade Island.' Subsequent investigation has ascertained that these canons are not European-made as originally suggested, but poorly made copies of European designs made in south-east Asia for use onboard Macassan trepangers that visited the north-western coast of Australia regularly during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.

    The first evidence of a German presence in Australian waters came on 6 July 1917 when the large cargo ship SS CUMBERLAND struck a mine ten miles off Gabo Island (a small island located off the coast of eastern Victoria). The Japanese cruiser CHIKUMA was the first to render assistance, but ENCOUNTER arrived the next day from Port Phillip, and remained to supervise salvage operations. The minefield had been laid by the raider WOLF, which later captured and sank the cargo ship SS MATUNGA off New Guinea. During September, ENCOUNTER took part in the search for MATUNGA, before providing an escort for other steamships heading for Rabaul. WOLF remained undiscovered and, after fourteen months at sea, returned safely to Germany in February, 1918. A second German raider, the sailing ship SEEADLER, also reached the Pacific, but sank just three small vessels before striking a reef off Mopelia Island in the Society group in August 1917. The following month ENCOUNTER was sent to inspect the wreckage.

    ENCOUNTER continued her Australian patrols until the end of the War, but peace did not bring about an immediate reduction in her employment. On 24 November, 1918, the Naval Board dispatched the cruiser to Fiji and Samoa on what became Australia's first overseas humanitarian assistance operation. ENCOUNTER embarked medical stores and a join Army and Navy relief expedition and provided valuable aid following a severe outbreak of influenza among the indigenous populations. Returning safely to Sydney and with no illness onboard, the cruiser spent less than a month at home before sailing, in early 1919, for Darwin in the Northern Territory. Here an industrial dispute had escalated to the point where unionists directly threatened the Commonwealth-appointed Administrator Dr. John Gilruth. For almost a month the cruiser provided a dominating presence in the harbour before leaving for Melbourne with the Administrator and his family safely aboard.

    On 5 December, 1919, ENCOUNTER was permanently transferred to the RAN (having officially been on loan from the RN since 1912.) The active career of the 'Old Bus' was, however, rapidly drawing to a close. On 10 January, 1920, she briefly returned to her role as a sea-going training ship, making several trips to Melbourne and Hobart. On 28 May, she took part in the RAN's first Fleet Review in Port Phillip Bay, which honoured the visit of the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VII). Between June and August ENCOUNTER visited several ports in South Australia and Western Australia before returning to Sydney and paying off into reserve on 30 September, 1920.

    On 1 January, 1923, HMAS PENGUIN, the Depot Ship at Garden Island, Sydney, paid off after 47 years of naval service. On the same day ENCOUNTER was renamed PENGUIN and re-commissioned for service as the Depot and Accommodation ship. Painted white with buff funnels, and deprived of armament, the new PENGUIN spent six years at Garden Island until reductions in defense expenditure necessitated her disposal. She paid off for the final time on 15 August, 1929. In 1930-31 she was stripped at Cockatoo Island Dockyard. What remained of ENCOUNTER's hull was towed to sea and sunk off Bondi Beach, Sydney, on 14 September, 1932. She now lies at a depth of approximately 74 meters (240 ft) and is still dived regularly. Between 1965 and 1994, the name HMAS ENCOUNTER was used for the naval depot in Port Adelaide, South Australia. The font in the Garden Island Chapel, Sydney, is made of the timber recovered from ENCOUNTER.

    HMS FOUDROYANT was flagship of Admiral Lord Horatio Nelson's fleet in the Mediterranean when he captured Naples from the French. The ship was also active in South America and Egypt, and acted as a training vessel. Its association with Lord Nelson helped extend its life before being broken up in 1897 after it was damaged in a gale. At this time FOUDROYANT's timber and metal was broken up and sold as souvenir pieces.

    HMS FOUDROYANT was a British 80-gun third rate ship of the line (from the 1720s third rate ships represented the most effective weapon the Royal Navy had at their disposal, representing the most formidable compromise of any vessel between sailing ability, firepower and cost. They carried between sixty four and eighty guns, usually over two gun decks). FOUDROYANT was designed by Sir John Henslow, and was the only ship built to her draught. It was a one-off design, differing from the British norm, and following French practice, by mounting the 80 guns on two decks rather than three, as was typical onboard British second rate ships. It is, perhaps, for this reason that FOUDROYANT was named after a French ship of the line that had been captured by the British in 1758 and which was finally broken up in 1787.

    FOUDROYANT was ordered on 17 January, 1788. Built in Plymouth-Dock (renamed Devonport in 1824), she was laid down in May, 1789 and finally launched on 31 March, 1798. She was first commissioned on 25 May, 1798 under the command on Captain Thomas Byard, although this would only last until 31 October 1798 when he died. Captain William Butterfield was given temporary command of the ship, until he was transferred to HMS HAZARD just twelve days later. Captain John Elphinstone took command on 26 November, 1798, in Cawsand Bay (a bay on the south-east coast of Cornwall, England). British admiral Lord Keith (George Elphinstone, 1st Viscount Keith) made FOUDROYANT his flagship on 28 November, 1798, before the vessel departed to join the Mediterranean Squadron on 5 December, 1798. After arriving at Gibraltar, Keith shifted his flag to HMS BARFLEUR on 31 December, and Captain Elphinstone left the ship the following day to be replaced by Captain James Richard Dacres.

    Dacres' command lasted four months, before he was replaced on 22 March, 1799 by Captain William Brown. FOUDROYANT sailed from Gibraltar on 11 May, 1799, calling at Port Mahon (part of Minorca that was occupied by the British in 1798 before being returned to Spain in 1802) before arriving at Palermo, Sicily on 7 June, 1799. At this time Brown transferred to HMS VANGUARD, and Captain Thomas Hardy took over the command. The following day Lord Nelson (Vice Admiral Horatio Nelson, 1st Viscount Nelson, 1st Duke of Bronté KB) made FOUDROYANT his flagship.
    Over the following months FOUDROYANT was involved in efforts to return the Neapolitan royal family to Naples. Nelson's fleet arrived in Naples on 24 June, 1799 and landed 500 marines in support of the Neapolitans. It was while FOUDROYANT was in Naples harbour that Nelson began his affair with Lady Emma Hamilton. The ship departed on 6 August, 1799, in company with the frigate HMS SYREN and the Portuguese ship of the line PRINCIPE REAL. FOUDROYANT also transported the Sardinian royal family to Leghorn (a port-city on the west coast of Italy).
    On 13 October, 1799, FOUDROYANT entered Port Mahon harbour where Captain Hardy was succeeded by Captain Sir Edward Berry. The vessel arrived back in Palermo on 22 October, 1799. Nelson then remained ashore when FOUDROYANT departed for Gozo (an island of the Maltese archipelago in the Mediterranean) on 29 October, 1799 with HMS MINOTAUR. In November, having weathered a storm in Palermo harbour, FOUDROYANT departed once more, this time with HMS CULLODEN before running aground in the Straits of Messina. With CULLODEN's assistance, it was possible to haul the ship off and into deeper water. On 6 December, 1799 a large contingent of soldiers from the 89th regiment were embarked on FOUDROYANT. The soldiers were landed at St. Paul's Bay, on Malta, on 10 December, 1799. The ship was back at Palermo on 15 January, 1800, where Lord Nelson once more went onboard. FOUDROYANT sailed on to Leghorn, arriving on 21 January, 1800. It was here that she received salutes from Danish and Neapolitan frigates, as well as two Russian ships of the line.

    On 11 February, 1799, FOUDROYANT embarked a contingent of Sicilian soldiers, before sailing for Malta the next day, in company with HMS ALEXANDER, HMS NORTHUMBERLAND and HMS SUCCESS. On 18 February, 1799 the fleet began perusing a squadron of three French ships: LE GÉNÉREUX, BADINE and FAUVETTE. ALEXANDER forced one of the ships to surrender whilst SUCCESS engaged LE GÉNÉREUX, and the two ships exchanged a number of broadsides before FOUDROYANT came up and fired into the French ship of the line. LE GÉNÉREUX struck her colours, and it was discovered that Rear-Admiral Jean-Baptiste Perrée, the commander-in-chief of the French Navy in the Mediterranean was aboard and had been killed at the beginning of the action. His ships had been carrying troops intended to relieve Malta, and their failure to arrive significantly weakened the French hold on Malta given that the British blockade of the island was proving highly successful.

    When FOUDROYANT sailed for Malta once more on 21 March, 1800, Nelson, having been taken ill, was left in Palermo. On 29 March, 1800, FOUDROYANT encountered HMS BONNE CITOYENNE where Berry learnt that French ships were expected to leave Valetta (the capital city of Malta) that evening. The French vessel GUILLAUME TELL put to sea as expected, immediately being pursued by HMS LION and HMS PENELOPE. As day broke on 30 March, 1800, FOUDROYANT joined the ensuing battle. GUILLAUME TELL eventually struck her colours, but not before FOUDROYANT had lost her fore topmast and main topsail yard. Later in the day the ship's mizzen mast also fell, having been damaged during the battle. LION took FOUDROYANT in tow for a time, whilst a jury rig was set up. She entered Syracuse, Sicily on 3 April, 1800.

    On 3 June, 1800, the king and queen of Naples boarded FOUDROYANT, as well as Sir William Hamilton and his wife Lady Emma Hamilton. The royal family departed the ship after their arrival in Leghorn on 15 June, and two weeks later Nelson chose to leave the ship, beginning a journey home to England overland with the Hamiltons. Lord Keith raised his flag on FOUDROYANT for the second time on 15 August, 1800, returning the ship to Gibraltar on 13 September, 1800. Captain Berry left the ship on 2 November, 1800 to command HMS PRINCESS CHARLOTTE.
    Captain Philip Beaver took command of FOUDROYANT on 17 November, 1800, and sailed into the Eastern Mediterranean with a fleet of fifty one vessels, many armed en flûte (meaning to replace canons with cargo) and carrying 16,150 men of General Sir Ralph Abercromby's force, which was intended to drive the French out of Egypt. Keith used his ships to reduce the castles at the entrance of Abukir Bay (as spacious bay on the Mediterranean coast of Egypt), which eventually fell to the British on 18 March, 1801. A French counter-attack on 21 March, 1801 by some 14,000 men, although ending in defeat, succeeded in injuring General Abercromby, and he died aboard FOUDROYANT a week after the battle. FOUDROYANT lay off Alexandria, Egypt, until June, 1801 and on 17 June, 1801, Captain Beaver transferred to HMS DETERMINÉE, to be replaced by Captain John Clarke Searle. When the Treaty of Amiens was signed, bringing the war to an end in 1802, Searle paid the ship off at Plymouth on 26 July, 1802.

    In January, 1803, FOUDROYANT was docked Plymouth undergoing repairs. The ship was then re-commissioned under the command of Captain Peter Spicer on 11 June, 1803. Her former captain, now Rear-Admiral Sir James Richard Dacres, made the vessel his flagship the same day, and remained onboard until 28 October, 1803. Two days later Rear-Admiral of the White, Sir Thomas Graves made the vessel his flagship. Captain Peter Puget took over the command on 27 February, 1804; however, owing to a serious injury he received whilst FOUDROYANT was serving with the Channel Fleet, he was returned to England (leaving Christopher Nesham in acting command) and officially left the ship on 31 May, 1805. FOUDROYANT returned to dock on 26 March, 1804 for repairs.

    On 24 February, 1805, Captain Edward Kendall took command of FOUDROYANT and, in June, the vessel acted as flagship to a fleet consisting of HMS BARFLEUR, HMS RAISONNABLE, HMS REPULSE, HMS TRIUMPH, HMS WARRIOR, HMS WINDSOR CASTLE, and HMS EGYPTIENNE that had been sent to blockade the French port of Rochefort (in south-western France). On 9 December, 1805 command of FOUDROYANT temporarily passed to Captain John Douglas, before Captain John Chambers White assumed command on 13 December, 1805. On 13 March, 1806, FOUDROYANT was involved in an action between some ships of the British fleet and two French vessels: MARENGO and BELLE POULE. Both ships were captured and taken into the navy. On 24 November, 1806, Captain Richard Peacock took command of FOUDROYANT, and Admiral Sir John Borlase Warren hoisted his flag onboard on 19 December, 1806.

    Rear-Admiral Sir Albemarle Bertie raised his flag in FOUDROYANT on 20 May, 1807 and remained onboard until the 17 November, 1807. Peacock's command passed to Captain Thompson on 31 May, 1807. FOUDROYANT joined with Admiral Sir Sydney Smith's squadron blockading Lisbon. Smith hoisted his flag onboard FOUDROYANT on 24 January, 1808. Captain Charles Marsh Schomberg took command of the ship on 6 June, 1808. On 12 March, 1808, FOUDROYANT parted company for South America, arriving in Rio de Janeiro in August, 1808. Captain John Davie took command on 25 January, 1809, followed by Captain Richard Hancock on 17 May. Smith transferred his flag to HMS DIANA on the same day. From 25 May, 1809, FOUDROYANT was in company with HMS AGAMEMNON, HMS ELIZABETH, HMS BEDFORD, HMS MUTINE, HMS MISTLETOE and HMS BRILLIANT, escorting a convoy. On 8 June, 1809 the fleet entered Moldonado Bay at the mouth of the Rio de la Plata (the River Plate) where AGAMEMNON struck rocks and was wrecked. FOUDROYANT assisted in taking off men and stores and no lives were lost.
    FOUDROYANT remained in Rio until August, 1812, when she returned to England, entering Cawsand Bay on 21 October, 1812 and entering Plymouth on 6 November. Hancock departed the ship on 30 November, 1812, and the vessel remained at anchor until 26 January, 1815, when she was taken into dock for repairs that would last four years. When repairs were completed in 1819 FOUDROYANT took up a role as guard ship at Plymouth until 1860. Throughout this period she was in and out of dock for further repairs. In 1862 she was converted into a gunnery training vessel, a role she fulfilled until 1884. She was thereafter stationed at Devonport on dockyard duties, and was attached as a tender to the gunnery schoolship HMS CAMBRIDGE.

    In 1891 FOUDROYANT was finally placed on the Sales List and sold out of the service in January 1892. Bought by J. Read of Portsmouth, she was promptly re-sold to German ship-breakers. This encouraged a storm of public protest. Wheatley Cobb then bought her to be used as a boy's training vessel. To offset hefty restoration costs it was decided to exhibit FOUDROYANT at various seaside resorts around the country. In June, 1897 she was towed to Blackpool and was abandoned at a dangerous place in open seas. On 16 June 1897, during a violent storm, she was wrecked on Blackpool Sands, damaging Blackpool North Pier in the process. Flotsam from the wreck was used to make furniture while the ship's bell now resides in Blackpool Town Hall. A replacement vessel, HMS TRINCOMALEE, was purchased by Wheatley Cobb and re-named HMS FOUDROYANT in the previous vessel's honour. This vessel remained in service until 1991, when she was taken to Hartlepool and re-named TRINCOMALEE.

    IMPERATOR was a passenger liner that travelled between Hamburg, Germany and America. It was launched on 23 May 1912 and during World War I was used as a troopship. After the conflict IMPERATOR operated for the Cunard passenger line (as RMS BERENGARIA) until it was broken up and sold for scrap in 1946.

    SS IMPERATOR was a German ocean liner built by AG Vulcan Stettin for the Hamburg-American Line between 1910 and 1913. She was the first of a trio of successively larger Hamburg-America ships that included SS VATERLAND and SS BISMARCK which were intended for transatlantic passenger service. At the time of her launch in May, 1912, IMPERATOR was the largest passenger ship in the world, superseding RMS OLYMPIC. At 51, 680 gross tons, she remained the largest until the VATERLAND set sail in 1914.

    The first plates of IMPERATOR's keel were laid in 1910. She was launched on 23 May, 1912, christened on 24 May, 1913 and finally completed in June of that year in Hamburg, Germany. On 23 May, 1912, Cunard Line announced that their new ship, RMS AQUITANIA, which was then under construction at the John Brown shipyards in Glasgow, Scotland, would be longer than IMPERATOR by one foot. There was instant uproar in Hamburg which resulted in the German vessel being fitted with a large bronze eagle several weeks later. Designed by Professor Bruno Kruse of Berlin, the eagle graced the forepeak of the IMPERATOR with a banner that was emblazoned with Hamburg-America Line's motto 'Mein Feld ist die Welt' (loosely translated as 'My Field is the World'). The eagle's wings would later be torn off in an Atlantic storm during the 1914 season, after which the entire structure was replaced with gold scroll-work similar to that which appeared on her stern.

    On her initial sea trials IMPERATOR ran aground on the Elbe River due to insufficient dredging (the excavation of sediments from shallow seas with the intention of keeping waterways navigable) and a flash fire in the engine room which resulted in eight crewmen being taken to hospital. On her official trials she suffered overheating of the turbines and some issues relating to stability which resulted in the abandonment of trials and the commencement of emergency work by the builders. IMPERATOR finally commenced her maiden voyage in June, 1913 with Commodore Hans Ruser in command. Hamburg-America also appointed four other captains for the journey to ensure that everything ran smoothly on her voyage between Cuxhaven, Germany, and New York. On her way IMPERATOR stopped at Southampton and Cherbourg before making her way across the Atlantic. On her first arrival, Captain George Seeth noted that the ship listed from side to side when the helm made changes to the ship's direction and she was soon nicknamed 'Limperator.'

    Having been discovered as being top heavy and unstable in heavy seas, IMPERATOR was returned to Vulcan shipyard in October, 1913 for drastic alterations to be carried out over the next few months. Firstly, cement was poured into the hull as ballast. Secondly, the vessel's three funnels were shortened by nine feet. Thirdly, all her upper deck fittings were replaced, wherever possible, with light-weight substitutes (e.g. all the marble bathroom suites in first class were removed and all of the heavy furniture was replaced with lightweight wicker cane). The costs for these alterations were borne by the shipbuilders as part of their five year warranty to the owners. In addition, an advanced fire sprinkler system was fitted throughout the ship as several fires had occurred onboard since the vessel had entered service.

    During the 1914 refit of the IMPERATOR, Commodore Ruser handed over command of the ship to Captain Theo Kier and left to take command of the new, larger flagship VATERLAND which was nearing completion. The IMPERATOR returned to service on 11 March, 1914, arriving in New York five days later on 19 March, 1914. In August, when war broke out, the vessel was laid up in Hamburg and remained inactive for more than four years, falling into a dilapidated state in the process. Following the armistice on 11 November, 1918, IMPERATOR was commandeered under the Allied Food Shipping and Finance Agreement, and allocated to the United States for temporary use as a transport alongside the VATERLAND, for bringing home American service personnel from France. She was commissioned as USS IMPERATOR on 5 May, 1919, in Brest, France, under Captain Casey.

    After embarking 2,100 American troops and 1, 100 passengers, IMPERATOR departed Brest on 15 May, 1919, arriving in New York one week later. Operating with the Cruiser and Transport Force (a unit of the United States Navy's Atlantic Fleet during World War One) from 3 June, 1919 to 10 August, 1919, she made three cruises from New York to Brest, returning over 25, 000 troops, nurses, and civilians to the United States. On 10 June, whilst en route to New York, IMPERATOR assisted the French cruiser JEANNE D'ARC, which had broken down in the Atlantic Ocean. The President of Brazil happened to be onboard the JEANNE D'ARC and was received by the IMPERATOR for transport to the United States.

    Decommissioned in New York on 24 November, 1919, IMPERATOR was transferred to the British shipping company Cunard where she was renamed BERENGARIA. The ship arrived at Southampton on 10 December, 1919 and then proceeded to Liverpool for what was planned to be a quick overhaul. However, upon inspection the vessel was found to be in extremely poor condition. The rudder was found to have a piece missing and her propellers were suffering from erosion on their leading edges. These issues were attended to whilst the interior of the ship was refurbished with items borrowed from the Cunard vessels TRANSYLVANIA and CARMANIA. Due to the extent of the work that needed to be carried out, BERENGARIA remained in Liverpool until 21 February, 1920 and during this time the company's annual dinner was held onboard, before the ship returned to service on the North Atlantic.

    On 2 March, 1920 BERENGARIA left New York, reaching Southampton in nine days. During the voyage the vessel developed a severe list which was found to have been caused by a faulty ash ejector. At this point Cunard decided that the ship was in need of a major overhaul and was withdrawn from service. Sir Arthur Rostron (of TITANIC and CARPATHIA fame) took command of BERENGARIA in July, 1920. The following year the vessel was sent, along with the AQUITANIA, to Armstrong Whitworth shipyards to be converted from coal fired to oil. In May, 1934 the BERENGARIA made the headlines when she ran aground on the mud banks at Calshot on the Solent. She was pulled free from the mud by four Southampton tugs. The vessel suffered no damage and the incident did not affect her sailing schedule.

    Despite her German heritage, BERENGARIA served as flagship to the Cunard Line, until she was replaced by her sister ship MAJESTIC (formerly SS BISMARCK) in 1934 (after the merger between Cunard and White Star Line). In later years she was used for discounted prohibition-dodging cruises, which earned her the unfortunate nickname 'Bargain-area.' Towards the end of her service life she suffered several electrical fires caused by ageing wiring and Cunard-White Star opted to retire her in 1938. She was sold to Sir John Jarvie (who also purchased the OLYMPIC) to provide work for his local region. She sailed for the River Tyne under the command of Captain George Gibbons and, once there, was scrapped down to her waterline. Final demolition took place in 1946.

    HMS VICTORY was launched on 7 May 1765 at Chatham and was one of the largest Georgian Royal Navy ships to enter into battle. VICTORY was Admiral Lord Nelson's flagship during the Battle of Trafalgar between the English and French on 21 October 1805. The great English victory came at the cost of Lord Nelson's life on board VICTORY. The ship currently remains in dry dock at Portsmouth and is the oldest remaining commissioned warship in the world.

    HMS VICTORY was an eighteenth century British 100-gun first rate ship of the line. First rates were the largest Royal Navy vessels of the time, wielding at least 100 guns over three gun decks. In the heyday of the sailing ship, however, the Admiralty tended to favor smaller, more maneuverable vessels that were cheaper and easier to construct (Only ten first rate ships were built by the Royal Navy throughout the entire eighteenth century). VICTORY weighed in at 3,500 tons, measured 227 feet, 3 inches in length and, as a full rigged ship, could manage a maximum speed of eight to nine knots.

    In December, 1758, the commissioner of Chatham Dockyard was ordered to prepare a dry dock for the construction of a new first rate ship. The outline plans arrived in June, 1759, being largely based on HMS ROYAL GEORGE which had been launched at Woolwich Dockyard in 1756. The architect chosen to design the vessel was Sir Thomas Slade who, at the time, was the appointed Surveyor of the Navy. The ship was designed to carry at least 100 guns, although in practice her armament would vary between 104 and 106 guns and carronades. The keel of the new ship was laid on 23 July, 1759 in the Old Single Dock (since renamed 'No. 2 Dock' and, now, 'Victory Dock'). In October, 1760 the name 'VICTORY' was chosen to commemorate the Annus Mirabilis or 'Year of Victories' that had been proclaimed in 1759. In that year of the Seven Years' War, land victories had been won at Quebec, Canada and Minden, Germany. Naval battles had also been won off the coast of Lagos, Portugal and in Quiberon Bay off the coast of France. There were, however, some doubts about whether 'VICTORY' was an appropriate name for the new British vessel, since the last first rate ship of the line to be called VICTORY had been lost with all hands in 1744.

    Once the frame of VICTORY had been constructed, it was standard practice to cover the ship up and leave it for several months to 'season' (a process of reducing the moisture content of wood prior to its use.) The end of the Seven Years' War, however, delayed the vessel's completion and it was left unfinished for nearly three years, contributing to the subsequent longevity of her timbers significantly. Work was recommenced in autumn, 1763 and VICTORY was finally launched on 7 May, 1765. The vessel had been constructed at a cost of £63, 167 and three shillings and was composed of around six thousand trees, ninety percent of which were oak and the remainder elm, pine, and fir. Given that there was no immediate use of the ship, she was placed in reserve, roofed over, dismasted and placed under general maintenance. VICTORY remained moored in the River Medway for thirteen years until France joined the American War of Independence.

    In March, 1778, John Lindsay was appointed as VICTORY's first captain but was soon transferred to HMS ROYAL GEORGE in May when Admiral, the Honorable Augustus Keppel decided to make VICTORY his flagship. She was commissioned that same month under the command of Rear Admiral John Campbell (1st Captain) and Captain Jonathan Faulknor (2nd Captain), with the flag of Admiral Keppel in place. She was armed with smooth bore, cast iron canon: thirty 32 and 42-pounders, thirty 24-pounders and forty 12-pounders. Later on she was also equipped with two carronade guns.

    Keppel put VICTORY to sea from Spithead, England on 9 July, 1778, at the head of a force of thirty ships of the line and, on 23 July, sighted a French fleet of twenty nine ships 100 miles west of Ushant (an island in the English Channel that marks the north-westernmost point of European France). The French Admiral, Louis Guillouet, comte d'Orvilliers, who had orders to avoid a confrontation, was cut off from Brest but retained the weather gage (an advantageous position of a fighting sailing vessel that finds itself situated upwind of another). Two of the French ships were able to escape into port leaving the fleet with only twenty seven fighting vessels. The two fleets maneuvered during shifting winds and heavy rain squall until a battle became inevitable with the British more or less in column and the French in some confusion. However, the French were fortunate enough to pass along the British line with some of their most advanced ships and at around 11.45am on 27 July, 1778, the First Battle of Ushant had commenced with VICTORY opening fire on BRETAGNE of 110 guns, which was being followed by the VILLE DE PARIS of 90 guns. The main British force managed to escape with little damage, although Sir Hugh Palliser's rear division suffered considerably. Keppel made the signal to pursue the escaping French ships but Palliser did not concur and the action was discontinued. Keppel was later court martialled and cleared of any wrong doing, whilst Palliser was criticized for his actions in an inquiry.

    In March, 1780, VICTORY's hull was 'sheathed' (a practice of protecting the underwater hull of a ship through the use of copper plates affixed to the outside of the hull) with 3, 923 sheets of copper below the waterline to protect it against shipworm. In December, 1781, the ship, which was now commanded by Captain Henry Cromwell and bearing the flag of Rear Admiral Richard Kempenfelt, sailed along with eleven other ships of the line, a 50-gun fourth rate and five frigates to intercept a French convoy that had sailed from Brest on 10 December. Not knowing that the convoy was protected by twenty one ships of the line, commanded by Luc Urbain de Bouxexic, compte de Guichen, Kempenfelt ordered a chase when they were sighted on 12 December, and began the Second Battle of Ushant. Having noted the French superiority, Kempenfelt contented himself with shadowing the French force, eventually taking satisfaction in witnessing its dispersal in a storm whilst traversing the Atlantic.

    In 1796, Captain Robert Calder (1st Captain) and Captain George Grey (2nd Captain) commanded VICTORY under Admiral Sir John Jervis' flag. Jervis sailed from the Tagus (the longest river on the Iberian Peninsula) on 18 January, 1797, and, after being reinforced on 6 February by five ships from England, his fleet consisted of fifteen ships of the line and six frigates. On 14 February, the Portuguese frigate CARLOTTA, commanded by a Scotsman named Campbell with a Portuguese commission, brought news that a Spanish fleet was close. Jervis maneuvered to intercept the fleet and the Battle of Cape Vincent ensued that same day. PRINCIPE DE ASTURIAS, leading the Spanish leeward division, tried to break through the British line ahead or astern of VICTORY, but VICTORY poured such a tremendous fire into her, followed by several raking broadsides, that the whole Spanish division wore round and bore up. Horatio Nelson, in HMS CAPTAIN (primarily), also played a decisive role in this action.

    In February, 1798, VICTORY was stationed at Chatham under the command of Lieutenant J. Rickman. Deemed unfit for service as a warship on 8 December, she was ordered to be converted into a hospital ship to hold wounded French and Spanish prisoners of war. In 1799, Rickman was relieved by Lieutenant J. Busbridge. On 8 October, 1799, however, fate played a hand in rescuing VICTORY from its ignoble fate when HMS IMPREGNABLE was lost off Chichester, having run aground on her way to Portsmouth after escorting a convoy to Lisbon. She could not be re-floated and was, therefore, stripped and dismantled. Now short of a first rate ship, the British Admiralty decided to recondition VICTORY. Work began in 1800 but as it proceeded an increasing number of defects were discovered and minor repairs quickly developed into an extensive reconstruction. The original estimate of £23,500 was soon inflated to £70,933. Extra gun ports were also added, taking her from 100 guns to 104, and her magazine lined with copper. Her figurehead was replaced along with her masts and the paint scheme changed from red to the black and yellow seen today. Her gun ports were originally yellow to match the hull but later repainted black, giving a pattern subsequently dubbed the 'Nelson Chequer' which became the standard for all Royal Navy ships following the Battle of Trafalgar. The work was completed on 11 April, 1803 and the ship left Portsmouth on 14 May under her new captain, Samuel Sutton.

    Vice Admiral Horatio Nelson hoisted his flag in VICTORY on 16 May, 1803 with Samuel Sutton as his flag Captain. He sailed to assume command in the Mediterranean on 20 May, where he transferred to the faster frigate AMPHION on 23 May. On 28 May Captain Sutton captured the French EMBUSCADE of 32 guns, bound for Rochefort from San Domingo. VICTORY rejoined Lord Nelson off Toulon on 30 May when Captain Sutton exchanged commands with the captain of the AMPHION, Thomas Masterman Hardy.

    VICTORY was passing the island of Toro (in the Caribbean) on 4 April, 1805 when HMS PHOEBE brought the news that the French fleet under Pierre-Charles Villeneuve had escaped from Toulon. While Nelson made for Sicily, on the assumption that the French were heading for Egypt, Villeneuve was actually entering Cádiz, Spain, to link up with the Spanish fleet. On 7 May, Nelson reached Gibraltar and received his first definite news. The British fleet finished taking on stores in Lagos Bay, Portugal on 10 May and, two days later, sailed westward with ten ships and three frigates in pursuit of the combined Franco-Spanish fleet of seventeen ships. They arrived in the West Indies to find that the enemy was sailing back to Europe where Napoleon Bonaparte was waiting for them with his invasion force at Boulogne.

    The Franco-Spanish fleet was involved in the indecisive Battle of Cape Finisterre in fog off Ferrol, Spain with Admiral Sir Robert Calder's squadron on 22 July, 1805, before taking refuge in Vigo and Ferrol to land the wounded and abandon three damaged ships. Calder on 14 August and Nelson on 15 August, joined Admiral Cornwallis' Channel Fleet off Ushant. Nelson continued to England in VICTORY leaving his Mediterranean fleet with Cornwallis who detached twenty of his thirty three ships of the line and sent them under Calder to find the combined fleet at Ferrol. On 19 August the British received the news that the Franco-Spanish fleet had already sailed from Ferrol and, two days later, that it had reached Cádiz. On the evening of Saturday, 28 September, Nelson joined Lord Collingwood's fleet off Cádiz.

    On the morning of 19 October, 1805, Admiral Villeneuve took his Franco-Spanish fleet to sea, first sailing towards the Mediterranean but then turning north towards the British fleet, thus beginning the Battle of Trafalgar. Nelson had already made his plan to break the enemy line some two or three ships ahead of the enemy's Commander in Chief and thereby achieve victory before the main enemy force (the van) could come to their aid. In the event fitful winds made the maneuver an arduous process. For five hours after Nelson's last maneuvering signal the two columns of British ships slowly approached the French line before HMS ROYAL SOVEREIGN, leading the lee column, was able to open fire on FOUGUEUX. Twenty five minutes later VICTORY broke the line between the French vessels BUCENTAURE and REDOUTABLE firing a treble shotted broadside into the stern of the former at a range of a few yards. At twenty five minutes past one Nelson was shot, the fatal musket ball entering his left shoulder and lodging in his spine. He finally died at half-past four. Such killing had taken place on VICTORY's quarter deck that REDOUTABLE attempted to board her, but they were thwarted by the arrival of Eliab Harvey in the 98-gun HMS TEMERAIRE, whose broadside devastated the French ship. Nelson's final order was for the feet to anchor, but this was countermanded by Vice-Admiral Collingwood. VICTORY lost 57 killed and 102 wounded at the Battle of Trafalgar.

    VICTORY transported Nelson's body to England where, after lying in state at Greenwich, he was buried at St. Paul's Cathedral on 6 January, 1806. VICTORY bore many admirals' flags after Trafalgar, and sailed on numerous expeditions, including two Baltic campaigns under Admiral Sir James Saumarez. Her active career finally ended on 7 November, 1812 when she was moored in Portsmouth Harbour off Gosport and employed as a depot ship. It has been rumored that when Thomas Hardy, First Sea Lord, informed his wife that he had just signed the order for VICTORY to be broken up she burst into tears and sent him straight back to his office to rescind the order. Though this story may well be apocryphal, it is given added credibility by the fact that the page of the duty log containing the orders for that day has been torn out.

    In 1889, VICTORY was fitted out as a Naval School of Telegraphy. She was soon after designated as a Signal School, and signal ratings from ships that had paid off were sent to VICTORY instead of the barracks, for a two month training course. The school remained onboard VICTORY until 1904, when training was temporarily transferred to HMS HERCULES and, in 1906, the whole establishment was moved to a permanent establishment at the Chatham Royal Naval Barracks.

    As the years passed VICTORY was gradually allowed to fall into disrepair. By 1921 she was in very poor condition and a campaign was launched to save her by the Society of Nautical Research, known as the Save the Victory Fund. The outcome of the campaign was that the British Government agreed to restore and preserve VICTORY to commemorate Nelson, the Battle of Trafalgar and the Royal Navy's supremacy before, during, and after the Napoleonic period. On 12 January, 1922 she was moved into No. 2 Dock Portsmouth (the oldest dry dock in the world and the same dock in which construction on her had first began in the 1750s). In 1928 King George V was able to unveil a tablet celebrating the completion of VICTORY's restoration, although restoration and maintenance still continued under the supervision of the Society of Nautical Research. In 1941 the vessel sustained some damage to her hull from a bomb dropped by the Luftwaffe into her dry dock. On one occasion German propaganda claimed that the ship had been destroyed by a bomb, and the Admiralty had to issue a denial.

    Listed as part of the Nautical Historic Fleet, Core Collection, in the early part of the twenty first century, VICTORY underwent another extensive restoration for the bicentenary of the Battle of Trafalgar in 2005 to bring her appearance as close as possible to that which she would have had at Trafalgar. Replicas of items including mess bowls, breakers and tankards in the Marines' Mess, together with a toothbrush, shaving brush and wash bowl in Hardy's Cabin are also now on display.

    HMS VICTORY is still in commission as the flagship of the Second Sea Lord in his role as Commander in Chief of the Royal Navy's Home Command. She is the oldest commissioned warship in the world, although the USS CONSTITUTION, launched thirty years later, is the oldest commissioned warship still afloat. As a museum ship, VICTORY attracts around 350, 000 visitors per year. The vessel's foretop sail, which was badly damaged during the Battle of Trafalgar, has also been preserved as an exhibit at the Royal Naval Museum.

    SOUTHERN CROSS is the name of the Fokker F.VIIb/3m trimotor monoplane which, in 1928, was flown by Australian aviator Sir Charles Kingsford Smith and his crew in the first ever trans-Pacific flight, from the mainland United States of America to Australia (about 7, 250 miles).

    The plane began life as the DETROITER, a polar exploration aircraft of the Detroit News-Wilkins Arctic Expedition. The aircraft had crashed in Alaska in 1926, and was recovered and repaired by the Australian expedition leader George Hubert Wilkins. Wilkins, who had decided that the Fokker was too large for his arctic explorations, met with Charles Kingsford Smith and Charles Ulm in San Francisco where he arranged to sell them the aircraft, without engines or instruments. Having fitted the aircraft out again, Kingsford Smith made two attempts at the world endurance record, in an attempt to raise funds for his trans-Pacific flight. However, after the New South Wales Government withdrew its sponsorship of the flight, it seemed as if the money would run out and that Kingsford Smith would have to sell the SOUTHERN CROSS. The aircraft was bought by American aviator and philanthropist Allan Hancock, who then loaned it back to Kingsford Smith and Ulm.

    On 31 May, 1928, Charles Kingsford Smith, Charles Ulm, together with Americans Harry Lyon and James Warner, took off from Oakland, California. The SOUTHERN CROSS first stopped for rest and refueling in Hawaii before setting off for Fiji. This leg of the journey took thirty four and a half hours of flight across open seas before gliding past the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva, where a large enthusiastic crowd witnessed the first ever aircraft landing in Fiji. The SOUTHERN CROSS landed at Eagle Farm Airport in Brisbane, Australia on 9 June, 1928, where a crowd of 25, 000 people were waiting to greet its crew. The plane then flew on to Sydney the next day. Kingsford Smith and Ulm also went on to make the first non-stop flight over the Tasman Sea in the SOUTHERN CROSS - from Australia to New Zealand and back (c. 25, 000 miles) - beginning with the first crossing on 10-11 September, 1928. Guy Menzies completed the first solo trans-Tasman flight in the SOUTHERN CROSS JUNIOR in 1931.

    Shortly before Kingsford Smith's death in 1935, he donated the SOUTHERN CROSS to the Commonwealth of Australia, for display in a museum. The aircraft was briefly brought out of retirement in 1945 for the filming of the movie 'Smithy.' The SOUTHERN CROSS is currently preserved in a special glass 'hangar' memorial on Airport Drive, near the international terminal at Brisbane Airport in Queensland, Australia. There is also a full-sized flying replica of the plane in South Australia. The aircraft was built in the 1980s and is the largest replica aircraft in the world.
    Three Japanese midget submarines attacked Sydney Harbour on 31 May 1942 resulting in the loss of the converted habour ferry KUTTABUL and 21 crew members on board. The submarines were sunk and salvaged from the Harbour, the parts being used as the basis for an Australian national tour incorporating cities including Sydney, Goulburn, Canberra and Melbourne. The tour helped raise funds for the Naval Relief Fund.

    In late May and early June, 1942, during World War Two, submarines belonging to the Imperial Japanese Navy made a series of attacks on the cities of Sydney and Newcastle in New South Wales, Australia. On the night of 31 May / 1 June, 1942, three Ko-hyoteki class midget submarines, each with a two member crew, entered Sydney Harbour, avoided the partially constructed Sydney Harbour anti-submarine boom net and attempted to sink Allied warships that were anchored in the Harbour. After being detected and attacked, the crews of two of the midget submarines scuttled their boats and committed suicide without successfully engaging Allied vessels. These were later recovered by the Allies. The third submarine attempted to torpedo the heavy cruiser USS CHICAGO, but instead sank the converted ferry HMAS KUTTABUL, killing twenty one sailors. The third midget submarine's fate remained a mystery until 2006, when scuba divers discovered the wreck off Sydney's northern beaches.

    Immediately following the raid, the five Japanese fleet submarines which had carried the midget submarines to Australia embarked on a campaign to disrupt merchant shipping in eastern Australian waters. Over the next month the submarines attacked at least seven merchant vessels, sinking three ships and killing fifty sailors. During this period, between midnight and 2.30am on 8 June, 1942, two of the submarines bombarded the ports of Sydney and Newcastle.

    The midget submarine attacks and subsequent bombardments are among the best-known examples of Axis naval activity in Australian waters during the Second World War and are the only times in history that either Sydney or Newcastle have come under attack. The practical effect was minimal: the Japanese had intended to destroy several major warships, but sank only an unarmed depot ship, inflicted minimal damage to Allied shipping, and failed to damage any significant targets during the bombardments. The main impact, therefore, was psychological; creating popular fear of an impending Japanese invasion and forcing the Australian military to upgrade defenses. The military also began convoy operations to protect merchant shipping.



    Additional Titles

    Assigned title: Table top made from lid of Flag Locker off the Bridge of HMAS SYDNEY. Leg Timber from the HMAS ENCOUNTER, February 1934

    Web title: Table made from wood from HMAS SYDNEY and HMAS ENCOUNTER

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