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SS OSTERLEY

Date: 1909-1929
Dimensions:
Overall: 445 x 645 mm, 3.6 kg
Medium: Gouache on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Classification:Art
Object Name: Painting
Object No: 00008905

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    Description
    Gouache painting by an unknown artist, possibly Italian School, 1909-1929, of the Orient Line's mail and passenger ship RMS OSTERLEY, under steam at sea. The ship is flying the Company's house flag (a white flag with a blue cross overall and a gold crown at the centre) at the mainmast, and a Royal Mail ensign at the stern. The presence of yachts in the background suggests that the ship is near a port. RMS OSTERLEY, built in 1909, served on the Australian routes via Suez until 1929, with two years as a troopship between 1917 and 1919.
    SignificanceThe painting is significant in representing the ships of the Orient Line in the early 20th century, which were important carriers of mail and passengers between Britain and Australia.
    HistoryRMS OSTERLEY, 12,129 gross tons, was built by the London & Glasgow Shipbuilding Company, Glasgow, for the Orient Steam Navigation Company in 1909. It was 535 feet (163 metres) long, with two masts, two funnels, twin screw propulsion and a speed of 18 knots. It was a sister ship of ORSOVA and OTWAY, one of five 12,000 tonners built for the Orient Line in 1909, a time of expansion for the company. It had accommodation for 280 first class, 130 second class, and 900 third class passengers. It carried passengers and mail on the Australian route via Suez from 1909 until 1929, with two years deployed as a troopship from 1917 to 1919. It was broken up in Glasgow in 1930.

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