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Posts tagged with 'maritime history'

Guardians of the dawn: the Liverpool Pilots

27 March 2014 by Sam

man on the deck of a ship on the river Mersey, with the Liverpool waterfront in the background

John Curry

Ben Whittaker, curator of port history at Merseyside Maritime Museum, has news of a special free talk next week:

“Who ensures the safe passage of shipping into and out of the Port of Liverpool? The Liverpool Pilots!

The sea approaches to Liverpool have always been difficult waters to navigate,  so the Liverpool Pilot Service was established in 1766 to safely guide ships into the port. For almost 30 years our own ship the Edmund Gardner – the largest object in our collections – provided a base for the service in the Irish Sea. Read more…

MV Derbyshire Trust Fund launched this week

13 February 2014 by Ellie

Pamphlet about the charity

For a while now I have been privileged to work with members of the Derbyshire Family Association (DFA). In September 2012 we opened a permanent display on the First Floor of Merseyside Maritime Museum, dedicated to the story of the bulk carrier MV Derbyshire, lost in the South China Sea with all hands on 9 September 1980. 42 crewmen and 2 wives perished, including 17 from Liverpool. The oil/bulk/ore carrier MV Derbyshire was the biggest British merchant ship ever lost. Read more…

Lusitania families’ event

8 November 2013 by Ellie

RMS Lusitania at the Liverpool Landing Stage in 1907

MCR/25/117 Image courtesy of NML, image not copyright NML.

At this time of year we pause to remember the contribution of British and Commonwealth military and civilian servicemen and women in the two World Wars and later conflicts.

With that in mind, Merseyside Maritime Museum is continuing to work towards marking the centenary of the sinking of Liverpool’s most famous ship, ‘RMS Lusitania’, in 2015.

On the 7 May 1915, while en route to Liverpool, ‘Lusitania’ was torpedoed by the German U-boat U-20 off the Irish coast near the Old Head of Kinsale. She sank in just 18 minutes, and 1198 men, women and children perished. The sinking sent shockwaves around the world, but her loss was felt particularly keenly in Liverpool – where rioting broke out against German-owned businesses.  A large number of the crew had strong connections to the city and many families were devastated by the event. “Lusi”, as she was affectionately known in the city, was held high regard by local people and had been a familiar site at the Landing Stage since her maiden voyage from Liverpool to New York in September 1907.

Each year Merseyside Maritime Museum marks the anniversary with a commemoration around our ‘Lusitania’ propeller, on the quayside across from the museum. Many of those who join us have family connections to those who were on board, and this year we met with people after the event to listen to their stories.

Lusitania propeller on the museum quayside

MMM.1989.159

On Friday 15th November we are hosting a follow-up event, and are hoping to see some familiar faces but also make new connections with local people who have family ties to ‘Lusitania’. If you, or someone you know, would like to come along then head for Learning Base 2, on the second floor of the museum, from 2pm.

If you would like more information then please email us at Lusitania@liverpoolmuseums.org.uk.

Disaster averted

29 August 2013 by Sam

archive photo of a ship and a tug

‘Kirriemoor’ ship in the Mersey

Curator of Photographic Archives Anne Gleave has found a photograph amongst the Maritime Archives and Library collections which depicts an incident  that occurred on this day 63 years ago: Read more…

Special visitors to the Merseyside Maritime Museum

22 August 2013 by Jen

smaller Hayden 4

Margaret Hayden with her son, Matt who organised the surprise visit

 Last week we were delighted to welcome some very special guests to the Merseyside Maritime Museum. Margaret Hayden, wife of the late Phil Hayden, came along to the museum with her son Matt on a surprise visit to see the model of the MV Derbyshire made by Phil. The model is currently on display in our MV Derbyshire – Search for the Truth exhibition.

Phil, a keen model maker in his spare time, got involved with the Derbyshire Families Association after reading about their plight in a shipping magazine.

Read more…

‘Leader’, our first ship model

11 July 2013 by Sam

large sailing ship model

Chris Moseley, Head of Ship and Historic Models Conservation, reports on a historic ship model that was recently conserved ready for a new display that opened this week:

“The ‘Leader’ was the very first ship model presented to National Museums Liverpool’s collections in 1862. It has gone on display this week in the Art and the Sea gallery in Merseyside Maritime Museum, as part of a small display about the Liverpool pilots, marking the 60th anniversary of the launch of the Edmund Gardner pilot ship.

Read more…

Happy birthday Edmund Gardner!

9 July 2013 by Rebecca

Edmund Gardner pilot ship

Today marks 60 years to the day since the former pilot ship Edmund Gardner was launched. For 28 years the Edmund Gardner was used as base at sea for Liverpool pilots, who would be transferred from the Edmund Gardner to inbound ships to guide them into Liverpool, or off ships they had guided out of the port. Read more…

The Forgotten Empress, remembered

29 May 2013 by Rebecca

picture of the 'Empress of Ireland' liner in a glass domed frame with seashells

This ‘Empress of Ireland’ souvenir is on display in the ‘Titanic, Lusitania and the Forgotten Empress’ gallery.

Today marks the anniversary of the sinking of ‘Empress of Ireland’, which sank on 29 May 1914 at around 2.30am.

‘Empress of Ireland’, along with her sister ship ‘Empress of Britain’, were built for the Canadian Pacific line. They provided a weekly service from Liverpool in 1906. They quickly became popular due to their speed, size and comfort.

On her last journey, the ‘Empress of Ireland’ set off from Quebec, Canada, and collided with the Norwegian ship ‘Storstad’ in thick fog in the Saint Lawrence River. The ‘Empress of Ireland’ sank within 15 minutes and 1,012 passengers and crew lost their lives only a few miles from the shore. Read more…

Seafarers’ memoirs at the Maritime archives

17 May 2013 by Rebecca

interior of maritime archives and library

Merseyside Maritime Museum archives and library

Lorna Hyland, Assistant Librarian at the Merseyside Maritime Museum Archives shares this update:

Liverpool’s Literary Festival, “In Other Words” is now drawing to a close and as the festival celebrated the city’s reputation for producing much loved story-tellers, poets, authors and playwrights, I thought I’d mention the library at the Merseyside Maritime Museum.   Read more…

Cunard and Queen Mary: then and now

17 May 2013 by Rebecca

Collection of china on display in museum

Cunard china on display in Life at Sea gallery.

Everyone at the Merseyside Maritime Museum welcomes the arrival of a very impressive and grand visitor to Liverpool. Cunard’s Queen Mary II docked at the pier head landing stage in the early hours of this morning. It’s the first time in forty five years that passengers can sail on a Cunard liner from the Pier head waterfront.

Pulling up at the lights during my commute into the office, the QM2 dwarves the neighbouring buildings and certainly has the wow factor with her classic red funnel. Read more…