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Congress dinner menu for the Amicale Internationale des Capitaines au long cours Cap Horniers and the New Zealand PAMIR Association, held in Wellington 1998.

Date: 30 October - 2 November 1998
Height:210mm, width:148mm.
Medium: Ink on paper.
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Object Name: Menu
Object No: ANMS0555[002]
Related Place:New Zealand,

User Terms

    Congress dinner menu for the International Association of Cape Horners and the New Zealand PAMIR Association, held in Wellington, New Zealand in 1998 from 30 October to 2 November. The cover features an image of PAMIR and the back page has space for "Autographs" one copy with blue signatures, the other copy blank.
    SignificanceThe International Association of Cape Horners (IACH) was established with the aim of drawing together those men and women who have voyaged around Cape Horn under sail, and its members are often referred to as 'Cape Horners'. The New Zealand PAMIR Association is comprised of those Cape Horners who had sailed specifically on the PAMIR between 1941 and 1948 when the vessel was based in New Zealand. PAMIR was the last commercial sailing ship to round Cape Horn in 1949 and the IACH is dedicated to preserving memories of the glory days of sail and the adventurous spirit of those who sailed around the cape. These two associations are vital in the commemoration and representation of an important part of maritime history in Australasia.
    HistoryThe Amicale Internationale des Capitaines au long cours Cap Horniers (AICH) was founded in St Malo, France in 1937 to bring together those who had rounded Cape Horn under sail and to preserve the history of this achievement. The requirement for membership was quite specific and applicants had to have the distinction of having sailed around Cape Horn in square rigged sailing ships. Although the AICH was founded in France, the association quickly developed international sections, each of which had various levels of entry and their own rules on membership.

    Before the opening of the Panama Canal in 1914, Cape Horn was along the major trading routes used by commercial sailing ships. The strong winds and currents, large waves and icebergs led to the loss of many vessels in the area and Cape Horn gained a reputation among sailors for its challenges and dangers. The term 'Cape Horn Fever' was coined to describe the reluctance of seaman to join the crew of a ship engaged in passing through Cape Horn. With the end of sea traffic around Cape Horn in the twentieth century and the decline of square rigged sailing ships, the association's values have been modified and upheld by the International Association of Cape Horners (IACH). IACH was formed in the United Kingdom in 1975 using the title of IACH UK, rather than the French name, and now incorporates a new generation of members such as those who have sailed around Cape Horn in yachts. The original organisation, Amicale Internationale des Capitaines au long cours Cap Horniers, was closed in 2003 with the passing of the 'square-rigger' members.

    The vessel PAMIR is closely linked to the shipping history of Cape Horn as she was the last commercial sail ship to pass the cape in 1949. Built by Blohm & Voss in Hamburg, PAMIR was launched in 1905 and joined the fleet of the German company Laeisz primarily for use in the Chilean nitrate trade. After World War I the ship was awarded to Italy as war compensation, but was bought back by Laeisz in 1924 and continued working the trade route around Cape Horn to Chile.

    PAMIR was later sold to Captain Gustaf Erikson of Finland, and in 1932 the vessel entered the Australian grain trade. It made headlines in February 1934 when it arrived in Sydney from Port Victoria, South Australia and had to lower the topgallant mast in order to pass under the Sydney Harbour Bridge.

    During World War II the ship changed hands again when she was seized as a war prize while berthed in Wellington, New Zealand in August 1941 - the first ship ever taken in this way in New Zealand. Under the New Zealand flag with Captain Horace Stanley Collier in command, PAMIR made several commercial voyages to Australia.

    In January 1947, PAMIR brought 750,000 super feet of New Zealand timber and stayed in Sydney for three months as a result of minor industrial disputes and the wharf-labourers’ strike. One major event during the vessel’s sojourn was Sydney’s Anniversary Regatta. The 111th Australia Day Regatta was held on the public holiday on 27 January 1947. The PAMIR was the flagship of the regatta and, along with a naval gunboat, was moored at Kurraba Point acting as the starting and finishing line for some 2,000 race participants. In the end, 30 vessels were capsized during the races, a record at the time.

    In 1948 the vessel was returned to the Erikson Line. PAMIR then sailed from New Zealand to Australia to collect grain before voyaging onto Falmouth, on the journey that confirmed the vessel's status as the last sail ship to carry a commercial load around Cape Horn in July of 1949.

    As the Erikson fleet became more reliant on steamships, sailing ships such as PAMIR were becoming obsolete and the vessel eventually became a training ship for the German navy. In 1957 tragedy struck en route from Buenos Aires to Hamburg. The ship became caught in a hurricane and sank in the middle of the Atlantic. Of the 86 men aboard, only 6 survived to be rescued. The legacy of PAMIR is closely linked to the shipping history of Cape Horn as she was the last commercial sail ship to pass the cape in 1949.

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