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Reproduced courtesy of Hilda Farquar-Smith and Robert Dun

Letters concerning SS EASTERN voyage 12, and the shifting of cargo in New Zealand

Date: January - February 1952
Dimensions:
Overall: 289 x 205 mm
Medium: Paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from the family of Burnham Walker Dun
Object Copyright: © Hilda Farquar-Smith and Robert Dun
Classification:Ephemera
Object Name: Voyage reports and documents
Object No: ANMS1343[004]
Related Place:Auckland, Dunedin, Wellington,

User Terms

    Description
    Documents by Commander Burnham Dun, including;
    A handwritten note which writes; New Zealand waterfront troubles.
    A cut out newspaper article with the heading; Smugglers suspected / Watches and Cigarette / Lighters. The article tells of people trying to sell items that have been imported illegally, and which some claim to be brought from ships.
    Two page from Captain Dun of the SS EASTERN to Burnie. Dated 11the January 1952. The letter concerns the delay to Bernie's vessel, and Dun writes about delays to the EASTERN.
    One page letter from the Commander to John Preston Esq, Chairman, Dunedin. Dated 30 January 1952. Thanking him for his copy of the book The Port of Otago, by A. H. McLintock.
    Two page letter from the Commander of the SS EASTERN to Messrs Macdonald Hamilton & Co, Managing Agents of The Eastern & Australian Steamship Co. Limited. Dated 21 January 1952, Dunedin. Report for voyage 12 south, including information on cargo and labour.
    Letter from the Commander of the SS EASTERN to Messrs Macdonald Hamilton & Co, Managing Agents of The Eastern & Australian Steamship Co. Limited. Dated 9th January 1952, Auckland. In continuation of the above letter. It concerns wharf congestion, and the moving of cargo.
    Letter from Commander of the SS EASTERN to Messrs Macdonald Hamilton & Co, Managing Agents of The Eastern & Australian Steamship Co. Limited. Dated 14 January 1952. In continuation of the above letter, Dun discussed the discharging of cargo, and congestion at the wharves in Wellington.
    Two page letter from Commander Dun of the SS EASTERN to the Manager, Union S. S. Co. of N. Z. Ltd, Agents, The Eastern & Australian Steamship Co. Limited. Dated 16 January 1952, Auckland. It discusses a stowage plan, and outlines how cargo will be shifted from Port Chalmers or Dunedin.
    One page letter from the Commander of SS EASTERN to Messrs Macdonald Hamilton & Co, Managing Agents of The Eastern & Australian Steamship Co. Limited, in continuation of the letter dated 14 January. This letter is dated 18 January 1952, Auckland. Advising that it wasn't possible to complete the discharging of steel, or load the freezer in time to sail on the 17th January.
    One page letter from Commander Dun of the SS EASTERN to Messrs Macdonald Hamilton & Co, Managing Agents of The Eastern & Australian Steamship Co. Limited. Dated 23 January 1952, Dunedin. Concerning voyage 12 south, and its securing at the wharf in Dunedin on 21st January, and discusses the discharging of cargo.
    One page letter in continuation of Commander Dun's letter of the 23rd January. Dated 29th January 1952, Dunedin. Advising that 24th January was Wharf Labourer's Picnic Day, and that no work was done. Outlines work carried out during the next few days (with delays caused by rain), and when work is expected to be completed.
    One page letter in continuation of Commander Dun's letter of the 29th January. Dated 31st January 1952, Dunedin. He advises that the moving of cargo was completed today, and that they will sail for Wellington tomorrow. He also discusses the discharging rate for cargo at the port, and the loading rate of wool.
    Two page letter from Commander Dun, in continuation of letter from 9th February 1952 (not included in letters) to Messrs Macdonald Hamilton & Co, Managing Agents of The Eastern & Australian Steamship Co. Limited. Dated 9th February 1952, Wellington. Concerning voyage 12 south. Advising of their anchoring in Wellington, with SS KARTIGI securing alongside the EASTERN, and the unloading of cargo.
    One page letter in continuation of the Commanders letters of the 4th and 9th February. Dated 16 February 1952, Wellington. Concerning the discharging of cargo into the KARTIGI, and information relating to the removal of the cargo.
    Two page letter from the Commander of the EASTERN in continuation of his letters of the 4th, 9th and 16th February. Dated 23rd February 1952, Wellington. Advising that discharging operations have continued the whole week. It outlines the loading of cargo onto the KARTIGI, and says that EASTERN is seventh on the priority list for a discharging berth.








    SignificanceW Olson, 'Lion of the China Sea: a History of the E & A Line', 1976.

    G A Hardwick, 'E & A Line - the Eastern and Australian Steam Ship Company Limited', The Log, volume 16, number 1, issue 71, February 1983, pp 3 - 12.

    Notes provided by Ian Farquhar-Smith, on file
    HistoryBurnham Walker Dun 1905-1992 began his apprenticeship with the Australasian Steam Navigation Company in 1921 when he was just short of his 16th birthday. After four years in the coastal ships of AUSN he gained his Second Mate's certificate in Sydney and joined the Eastern & Australian Steamship Company (E&A) as Fourth Officer on the TANDA. He served 43 years with this Company sailing to ports between Australia and eastern Asia, retiring in 1967. He gained his Master's Certificate in 1929, at the age of 24. In 1942, when he was Chief Officer on the NANKIN, the ship was captured by the German raider THOR. He spent the rest of the war with the surviving crew labouring in Japanese POW camps. He returned to Australia in poor health and spent years trying to get compensation. Although he was an Australian resident employed by an Australian company (managing agents Macdonald Hamilton) the ship was British owned and registered, and he obtained only limited compensation. He went back to sea with E&A in 1946, had his first permanent command in 1947 on the second NANKIN, and served in the company's ships EASTERN, NELLORE, ARAFURA and ARAMAC until he retired. During this time he carried cargo regularly to Japan, where he established friendly relationships with his former captors. During his career he made a number of rescues at sea and survived several severe typhoons. On retirement, he became a Nautical Assessor and took part in marine Courts of Enquiry, including the enquiry into the collapse of the Tasman Bridge, caused by the cargo ship LAKE ILLAWARRA striking one of the bridge's piers.

    E & A Line actually consisted of four successive companies bearing the same name, Eastern and Australian Steam Ship Company, between 1873 and the early 1980s. It was established to serve routes between Australasia and 'Far Eastern' ports - Singapore, Hong Kong, and Japan, and was originally named Eastern & Australian Mail Steam Company Limited. It only ever had a small fleet of ships but those it had, such as the NELLORE and the NANKIN, were well known. Ownership of E&A Line was involved in other companies in the 20th century, notably the AUSN Company, and from 1946 P&O. Through its history E & A Lines carried cargo and passengers, and was involved in trooping and supply in World War I. In World War II its entire fleet of three of its ships was lost. In the post-war period it operated cargo-passenger ships until 1975 when passenger service was given up and the ships were progressively sold, though in 1983 it continued to staff and operate AJCL containerships.

    The Eastern & Australian Steamship Company
    Additional Titles

    Assigned title: Letters concerning SS EASTERN voyage 12, and the shifting of cargo in New Zealand

    Collection title: Captain Burnham Walker Dun collection

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