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New Zealand souvenir, August 1908

Date: August 1908
Overall: 91 x 143 mm
Medium: Card, ink
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Purchased with USA Bicentennial Gift funds
Classification:Posters and postcards
Object Name: Postcard
Object No: 00015376
Place Manufactured:Auckland

User Terms

    This souvenir postcard was produced to commemorate the American Great White Fleet visit to Auckland, New Zealand in August 1908. The postcard features a coloured lithographic print depicting 13 battleships in Auckland Harbour surrounded by five portraits of the Mayor of Auckland; the Govenor of New Zealand; Admiral Sperry from the Great White Fleet; the Premier of New Zealand and the Honourable Mahuta M.L.C. The postcard is titled 'New Zealand Souvenir, August 1908'.
    SignificanceThe visit of the American Great White Fleet in 1908 was an event of enormous proportions. Souvenir items such as this postcard demonstrate the excitement the visit generated amongst the Australian public. Memorabilia made to coincide with the occasion emphasised the mutual union between the countries and the good will of the Australian nation toward its American ally.
    HistoryIn December 1907 United States President Theodore Roosevelt sent the US Atlantic Battle Fleet of 16 battleships and seven auxiliary ships on an 18 month goodwill cruise around the world. The fleet was a chance for the Navy to practice seamanship and express America's world power. Roosevelt was also concerned about rising Japanese aggression and their expansionist foreign policy. The cruise would be a political and public relations exercise to build domestic support for more naval construction.

    Led by the flagship, USS CONNECTICUT, the Great White Fleet as it became known, consisted of 16 battleships painted white, as was the practice of all US Navy ships in times of peace. The ships sailed in four divisions of four ships each. Early in the voyage the order of the ships was altered to allow the best-looking vessels to be at the front of the fleet. The cruise incorporated six continents, 26 countries and 32 ports with 614 officers and 13,504 crew. It consumed 435,000 tons of coal, more than any other naval expedition and was the largest fleet to ever accomplish a circumnavigation of the globe.
    Additional Titles

    Web title: New Zealand souvenir, August 1908


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