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Photograph - Colour - Figureheads, Cutty Sark vessel and exhibition, Greenwich, England

From the Collection of Ballarat Heritage Services PO Box 2209 Bakery Hill Post Office Victoria

Object Registration
000
Keywords
cutty sark, exhibition, wool, australia, china, sailing, woodget, moodie, london, willis, dumbarton, scott & linton, william denny, tea, cargo, immigration, trade
Historical information
The Long John Silver Collection of Figureheads is displayed alongside the Cutty Sark. It is the largest collection of Merchant Navy figureheads in the world. It was given to Cutty Sark in 1953 by Sydney Cumbers, also known as Captain Long John Silver because of his eye patch. These figure heads come from vessels mostly dating from the 19th century and the collection, like Cutty Sark herself, is dedicated as a memorial to the men of the Merchant Navy.
The Cutty Sark was launched on 22 November 1869. She was named by the wife of George Moodie, the ship's first master who had also supervised her construction. Cutty Sark left the Clyde on 13 January 1870. A month and two days later, she set sail from London for China. Cutty sark was designed and built by Scott & Linton of Dumbarton for 16,150 pounds. But much of the money was to be paid by Willis when the ship was launched. Just before they finished her, Scott & Linton ran out of money and went bankrupt. She was completed by William Denny & Brothers. The Cutty Sark was the first ship to reach London with a tea cargo in 1877. But she was one of only nine sailing ships that returned that year - in 1870 there had been 59. Steamships were now dominating the tea trade. In 1883 the Cutty Sark joined the booming trade in transporting Australian wool. Every year until 1895 she set out in the summer for Australia, to load a cargo of wool bales and return to England in time for the wool sales ini the first three months of the new year. Cutty Sark soon established herself as the fastest of the wool clippers. Under her last master, Richard Woodget she set record times of 70 days or less for the voyage which no other sailing ships could match.
When Made
6 November 2016
Last updated
26 Sep 2017 at 1:47PM