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ALCES

Date: c 1912
Dimensions:
Overall: 650 x 950 x 455 mm, 24.4 kg
Medium: Timber, paint, silk, wire, wool
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Classification:Models
Object Name: Ship model
Object No: 00018374
Place Manufactured:Sydney

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    Description
    This model of an imaginary vessel the ALCES was made by merchant seaman Stephen Poldore as a wedding gift for his daughter Alice. The name ALCES is an amalgam of the names of Alice and her husband Cecil Cartwright.
    SignificanceThe ALCES is representative of early 20th century model ship building, but is also a unique and interesting example of individual craftmanship.
    HistoryThis model was made by a merchant seaman, Stephen Poldore, in Sydney in about 1912-13 and given as a wedding present to his daughter Alice when she married Cecil Cartwright in March 1914. Poldore originally came from the Channel Islands and he died about 1944. He is known to have made at least one other model, of a yacht.

    This is a fascinating example of a ship model. The carved hull has been painted blue, and features gold 'tiddlywork'. The upper works are made of varnished natural timber picked out in gold, and there are small figures on the bridge and other parts of the ship.

    Most interestingly, the model has a clockwork mechanism that makes the vessel pitch and roll on its 'sea' of blue silk.

    Cecil and Alice Cartwright lived at Rosebery, Lavender Bay, Sydenham, then Sutherland, in Sydney, where Alice Cartwright died in 1993 at the age of 104. The model obviously had much significance for the Cartwrights and was only operated for short times on special occasions or for visitors.
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