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Part of a commemorative gong made from a shell fired by the SS WANDILLA during its war service in WWI

Date: 1915 - 1918
Overall: 465 x 110 mm, 2638 g
Medium: Metal
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Svitzer Australasia
Object Name: Gong
Object No: 00048170

User Terms

    This artillery shell has a hook at the top so it can hang from the mount regsitered as 00048168 and the striker is registered as 00048169.
    SignificanceThe Adelaide Steamship Company was a prominent Australian shipping line from the 1870s to the 1970s.
    HistorySS WANDILLA built 1912 for Adelaide Steamship Company. Requisitioned by the Navy in 1915 designated HMAT WANDILLA, operated as a troopship and hospital ship. Returned to Adelaide Steamship Company after the war but sold by them in 1921 due to decrease in passenger trade.

    The Adelaide Steamship Company was formed by a group of South Australian businessmen in 1875 with a view to monopolise goods transportation between Adelaide and Melbourne and profit from the need for an efficient and comfortable passenger service. The company expanded to include shipping operations on the Australian coast, primary products, consumer cargoes and extensive passenger services.

    Services were extended to Sydney and Queensland and the passenger fleet of the Adelaide Steamship Company became widely known across the country.

    Many of the company's ships were requisitioned during the First World War. The WARILDA was sunk by a submarine on the 2nd of August 1918.

    In the 1930s and 1940s, the company diversified into airline operations, towage, shipbuilding, and the shipping of salt, coal and sugar. Adelaide Airways was formed in 1935, which continued in Australian National Airways (ANA) in 1936 and Ansett in 1957.

    During World War II the Company owned thirty ships, many serving with distinction during the war.

    In 1964, the Interstate fleet merged with McIlwraith, McEacharn & Co, and the partnership developed the world's first purpose built container ships. However, in 1973, the company ceased its shipbuilding operations, and in 1977, in its 103rd year of operation, sold its shipping related businesses, and ceased its connection with ship owning and operating, retaining interests only in tugboat operations.

    In the 1970s and 1980s the company became a thriving and successful 'corporate raider'. The recession of the early 1990s forced the company's liquidation

    In June 1997, the tugboat operations were floated on the Australian Stock Exchange under the name Adsteam Marine. In 2006, Adsteam Marine was acquired by AP Moeller-Maersk, removing the Adelaide Steamship name from the Australian Stock Exchange and Australian Company registers.

    Adsteam Marine Limited was acquired by Svitzer Australasia in 2007.

    Additional Titles

    Assigned title: This SHELL was fired by the SS WANDILLA, one of the Company's vessels employed by the Admiralty during the Great War 1914 - 1918. Presented by Captain R. Sunter

    Assigned title: Part of a commemorative gong made from a shell fired by the SS WANDILLA during its war service in WWI

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