On This Day

28 February

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1911 Demosthenes


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The 11,223-ton passenger and cargo ship Demosthenes (Yard No. 418) was launched today for George Thompson & Co. Ltd., Glasgow (Aberdeen Line). The christening ceremony was performed by Mrs E. Lionel Fletcher, wife of one of the Company’s directors.

Amongst those present were Lord and Lady Pirrie, Thomas Andrews, E. Lionel Fletcher and Walter H. Savill, Directors of Geo. Thompson & Co. Ltd.; George T. Henderson (General Manager), Mrs G. T. Henderson, Mr and Mrs A. D. Henderson, J. Mannell (Superintendent Engineer) and Captain A. Robb, commander designate of the vessel when she came into commission. The Aberdeen liners, carrying two classes of passengers (1st and 3rd) were intended for the Company’s South African and Australian service.

A sistership of Themistocles (Yard No. 412), with the exception that she was a triple-screw vessel. Demosthenes was a departure for the Aberdeen Line, in terms of propelling machinery, her two sets of triple-expansion engines coupled with a low pressure turbine, was the same arrangement fitted in the ‘Olympic’ class liners Olympic (Yard No. 400), Titanic (Yard No. 401) and Britannic (Yard No. 433). In service the choice of machinery proved a great success; on her maiden voyage she made the passage from London to Melbourne, via the Cape, in 36 days, including stops - a record for those days.

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1906 Graphic


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The 2,016-ton cross-channel ship Graphic (Yard No. 379) was launched today for the Belfast Steamship Company.

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1945 Defoe


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The 8,462-ton cargo ship Defoe (Yard No. 1182) was launched today for Lamport & Holt Line Limited, Liverpool.

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1885 Gaelic


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The 4,205-ton passenger ship Gaelic (Yard No. 172) was launched today for the Oceanic Steam Navigation Co. Ltd (White Star Line). Gaelic was a sistership of Belgic (Yard No. 171) launched the previous month on 3 January.

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1968 ‘Leander’ class frigate


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The 2,450-ton ‘Leander’ class frigate HMS Charybdis (Yard No. 1675) was launched today for the Ministry of Defence.
 

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1889 British Empire

The 3,020-ton cargo ship British Empire (Yard No. 214) was launched today at high water for British Shipowners’ Co. Ltd., Liverpool. The vessel’s dimensions were: Length, 345 feet; Breadth of beam, 40 feet, 9 inches. British Empire was the eight vessel constructed by Harland & Wolff for the firm.