2 East Indiamen, and Columbus's Santa Maria

SS Stratheden

HEIC  East Indiaman "Repulse" 1820 -- 1830

Sailing ship 1330 tons

SS Stratheden -- 1937 -- 1967

Steamship 24000 tons
The ship above is the 1330 ton East Indiaman "Repulse" painted in 1828.  She was used by the HEIC for 6 voyages.

Thomas Blanchett went to India aboard the HEIC 961 ton East Indiaman "Marquis of Wellington" in 1817.  The "Wellington" was used for 9 voyages between 1812 and 1828 carrying troops, passengers and freight to India and convicts and freight to Australia.  I have no picture of the "Marquis of Wellington" .  See below for a representation of Columbus's "Santa Maria"


Our family sailed from Bombay to London on the Stratheden in October 1949.

One of P&O's best known ships for many years was the 24,000-ton Stratheden, which had the distinction of reopening the company's Australian service after the Second World War.

She was in a class of five vessels which were always called the "Strath'' liners, and all are remembered with affection by former passengers and crew.

Stratheden was ordered from Vickers Armstrong in Barrow and the launching ceremony was performed on June 10, 1937.

The liner had an imposing appearance with one big funnel, two pole masts, a straight stem and cruiser stern.

Geared turbines gave her a speed of about 19 knots and there was accommodation for 527 first-class and 453 tourist-class passengers. The crew totalled 653.

When the Second World War broke out Stratheden was on her way to Australia and became the first British liner to pass through the Atlantic and Mediterranean submarine zones.

During her wartime service as a troopship she carred 149,687 servicemen and civilians and steamed nearly half a million miles.

In 1950 the vessel was chartered by Cunard for four round trips between Southampton and New York.

Five years later, during gales in the Ionian Sea, eight of the Stratheden's crew were drowned while trying to rescue fishermen from a Greek trawler.

P&O withdrew Stratheden from the Australian run in 1963 and then followed a period when she was under chartered before being used as a hotel ship and for the occasional pilgrim voyage.

In 1967, when she was known as Marianna Latsi, she was laid up and two years later was broken up for scrap.



Columbus's "Santa Maria"

~ 100 tons

This model from the Science Museum , London represents a merchantman as built in one of the Atlantic ports of Spain and Portugal in the 15th century.  It is as near as is known to the dimensions of Columbus's flagship.  Crew numbered about 40 and slept on deck.  Size was about 100 tons.  Hammocks were a native American invention  introduced to Europe only after Columbus's voyage.  The ship was about 80 - 100 ft (~30 metres) long; cooking was done over a firebox on deck