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Reproduced courtesy of Lynne Norton

SS NANKIN at Brisbane

Date: 1937
Sheet: 275 x 191 mm
Overall: 275 x 191 mm, 0.007 kg
Medium: Paper, pencil
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Object Copyright: © Lynne Norton
Object Name: Drawing
Object No: 00027983
Place Manufactured:Brisbane

User Terms

    The image depicts the steamship NANKIN docked beside a wharf at the Brisbane meatworks. NANKIN was a passenger-cargo ship of the Eastern and Australian Steamship Company and was captured by the Germans during the Second World War.
    SignificanceThis drawing highlights the Eastern and Australian Steam Ship Company, a small line which played a strong part in Australian maritime history, providing links from Australia (in particular Queensland) and New Zealand to South East Asia from 1873 to 1983.
    HistoryThe Eastern & Australian Steamship Company (E&A Line) began as 4 British and Australian merchants contracted in 1873 to provide a mail service for the Queensland Government to transport mail between Queensland, Dutch East Indies, Singapore and Sydney. Hong Kong and Melbourne were eventually added to the route. In 1880 the contract was not renewed and they ceased mail transportation, evolving into a passenger and cargo carrier. They operated mainly between Hong Kong and Australia.

    Through its history, the E&A Lines carried cargo and passengers, and was involved in trooping and supply in World War I and in World War II. Its entire fleet of three ships was lost in World War II.

    In 1919 the company was taken over by Australasian United Steam Navigation Ltd, although it continued to operate as a separate entity until 1945. At that time, the chairman of P&O also held extensive interest in Australasian United Steam Navigation, and the company became connected to P&O in 1946. Australasian United from there after focused on cargo transportation between Australia and the Far East and continued to operate until 1975 when their last two ships were sold, although from 1983 it continued to staff and operate AJCL containerships.

    SS NANKIN was built in 1912 for P&O and was purchased by the E&A Line in 1931. She was a steel passenger-cargo steamship built by Caird, Greenock and had twin screw, quadruple expansion engine making 14 knots. During the Second World War NANKIN continued to function as a passenger ship. In May 1942, NANKIN was proceeding from Australia to India with civilians and military passengers when it was captured by a German raider, THOR, in the Indian Ocean. The passengers were transferred several times to different ships and eventually arrived in Yokohama, Japan where they were interned in a prisoner of war camp. NANKIN was renamed LEUTHEN and was destroyed at Yokohama in November 1942 due to the explosion of the German tanker UCKERMARK.
    Additional Titles

    Web title: SS NANKIN at Brisbane


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