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Aberdeen & Commonwealth Line, England via Colombo & Suez Canal

Date: c 1946
Overall: 1275 x 925 mm
Medium: Colour lithograph on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Classification:Posters and postcards
Object Name: Poster
Object No: 00008658

User Terms

    This poster advertising the Aberdeen & Commonwealth (A&C) Line's one class service between England and Australia was designed by Harry Hudson Rodmell in 1946. The graphic emphasis is on the size and power of the vessel, with the black-hulled A&C liner dwarfing the tugs and ferries in the foreground.
    SignificanceThe poster is representative of the old, illustrative style of shipping poster incorporating a ship portrait with details of a port en route. This style gradually disappeared by the late 1940s, to be replaced by more conceptual designs.
    HistoryEstablished in 1825 by George Thompson of Aberdeen, the Aberdeen Line ran sailing ships to the St. Lawrence with a few passengers and returning with timber. By 1837 the company had a fleet of 12 sailing vessels, and was trading to South America, the Pacific, West Indies and the Mediterranean. In 1842 the Line commenced a regular London to Australia route, and by 1882 a steamship service was assigned to that route.

    In 1905 the company came under the joint control of the White Star Line and Shaw, Savill & Albion Lines, but retained its own identity. White Star Line purchased the Australian Government owned Australian Commonwealth Line and its fleet in 1928, but in 1931 the Kylsant shipping group, which owned White Star Line, collapsed. In 1932, the Aberdeen Line was purchased by Shaw, Savill & Albion and in 1933 the fleet of the former Australian Commonwealth Line, which had not been fully paid for, was also acquired and the Aberdeen & Commonwealth Line (A&C) formed.

    Between 1928 and 1957 A&C ran a route from Southampton to Brisbane, via Malta, Port Said, Colombo, Fremantle, Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney. In the 1940s, A&C one class ships provided only first class service as opposed to the affordable one class tourist class service provided by companies such as the Orient Line.
    Additional Titles

    Web title: Aberdeen & Commonwealth Line, England via Colombo & Suez Canal

    Primary title: Poster 'Aberdeen & Commonwealth Line, England via Colombo & Suez Canal, One Class Only, Agents Dalgety & Company Limited, by Harry Hudson Rodmell, 1946.

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