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The new iron clipper-built ship TAYLEUR for Australia

Date: 1853
Dimensions:
Overall: 400 x 270 mm
Medium: Ink on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Classification:Ephemera
Object Name: Engraving
Object No: 00001089
Place Manufactured:London

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    Description
    A page from the Illustrated London News from the 26 November 1853. It featuring two engravings: 'The new iron clipper-built ship TAYLEUR for Australia'; 'The new steam-ship STAG for the Glasgow and Belfast royal mail steam-packet service' with accompanying articles.
    SignificanceEmigration to Australia was booming in the 1850's due to the gold rush and the growth of cities such as Melbourne and Sydney. It was now an attractive destination for all classes and custom made ships such as the TAYLEUR were seen to be fulfilling the demand.
    HistoryThe TAYLEUR was built for the Australian passenger trade and was owned by the White Star Line. She was heralded at the time of her completion in the Illustrated London News as being "the perfect model of what an emigrant ship ought to be for such a voyage as that to Australia. No expense has been spared in the construction or in her fitting up; and it can scarcely be doubted that she will prove herself worthy of the great skill, pains, and liberal expense which have been bestowed upon her."
    The TAYLEUR left Liverpool for Melbourne on her maiden voyage on January 19, 1854 and was captained by John Noble. Just 2 days later on 21 January, despite believing they were heading south in the Irish Sea, the ship spotted the island of Lambay which indicted that the compasses were faulty and they had in fact been heading west. Other technical faults started to emerge, such as an insufficent rudder, in addition to what was later believed to be the inexperience of the crew. The TAYLEUR was unable to be turned and was wrecked upon the rocks. Of the estimated 662 people on board, only 290 people survived. Of particular note was the survival of only 2 women of the aprroximate 200 that were on board at the time. It is believed that it was due to their weighty skirts and corsets that most iof them were unable to make it to shore or to climb the rocks if indeed they got there.
    There were official enquires into the wreck and it was debated whether it was equipment failure and inadequacy, namely the compass and ruder, or human error of the crew, captain and the White Star Line that was at fault. It was no doubt a combination of all.
    The TAYLEUR has since been known as "the first Titanic".

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