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Model of the sailing ship TORRENS

Date: before 1969
Overall: 535 x 1130 x 200 mm
Display Dimensions: 535 x 200 x 1130 mm
Medium: Wood
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Keith Wingrove
Object Copyright: © Estate of Norman Lindsay
Object Name: Model
Object No: 00000459

User Terms

    Wooden model of the sailing ship TORRENS by Norman Lindsay. Between 1875 and 1890 the TORRENS made 21 outward voyages from Plymouth, England to Port Adelaide in South Australia. The Polish writer Joseph Conrad served on board TORRENS on two voyages to South Australia. The ship was broken up in 1910.
    SignificanceThe Australian artist Norman Lindsay started this model of the TORRENS just before he died. In addition to being a popular and well respected passenger ship to Australia, the TORRENS had the added attraction to Lindsay of having had the author Joseph Conrad, of whom he greatly admired, as her Chief Officer for a time.
    HistoryThe TORRENS was built in 1875 by James Laing of Sunderland, England for AL Elder & Co. "The TORRENS requires special mention, as she was without doubt one of the most successful ships ever built, besides being one of the fastest, and for many years she was the favourite passenger ship to Adelaide." It was not unusual for the TORRENS to make 300 miles a day whilst passengers were able to exercise on a dry deck. It was specially designed for carrying passengers and with the exception of the famous "Lochs" she was the last sailing ship to carry passengers in the Australian trade. Its best days run was 370 miles in 1897. The well known author Joseph Conrad joined the TORRENS as Chief Officer 2nd November 1891 in London, and ceased "to belong to her" on the 15th October 1893, after two voyages.

    The Norman Lindsay model of the TORRENS was donated to the museum by Keith Wingrove in 1988. Wingrove was a friend of Norman Lindsay's, and was given the model Lindsay was making of the TORRENS before he died. Lindsay greatly admired Conrad as a novelist and seaman. A dedication to Joseph Conrad is found written on the poop deck of the model and signed by Norman Lindsay.
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