Tag Archives: merchant navy

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Black fabric-covered hardback booklet ‘Dead Reckoning, Altitude and Azimuth Table’, 3rd edition, by A.A. Ageton. Maritime navigational formulae produced by the United States Navy Department Hydrographic Office, 1943. Handwritten in fountain pen on the inside cover is “This Book is the Property of the Republic of Liberia”.


Colour photograph of the captain and crew of the Queen Mary cruise ship with a wreath commemorating the wrecking of the destroyer HMS Sturdy on rocks at Sandaig during WWII.

Organised by Commander Michael Gibson of Plymouth, the wreath was thrown overboard in the summer of 2015 as the Queen Mary cruised past the Hebrides. HMS Sturdy foundered during a storm in October 1940. Five lives were lost, but were it not for the actions of Tiree folk, in particular Captain Donald Sinclair, the toll would have been much higher. The dedication on the wreath reads: “Dedicated to the bravery of Captain Donald Sinclair and those who helped in the rescue effort of HMS Sturdy and in remembrance of all those lost on Empire Eland in 1941”. Captain Sinclair was on the Empire Eland when it was torpedoed by a U-boat in the Atlantic.


Softback book ‘No Shame in Fear’ by Alex C. MacLean, 2016. Alex C. Maclean was born on the Isle of Tiree in 1923, and lived there until the age of fourteen, when he went to sea. This is a first-hand account of the WW2 Atlantic convoys and the devastation of war. Stalked by German U-boats, cast adrift in a lifeboat, it also tells of the difficulties of the post-war period, in building a decent family life and coming to terms with his own history back on Tiree. Foreword by Donald S. Murray.


Bound list of Tiree Merchant Seaman Records compiled by John MacLean, Clydebank, in May 2012. Includes (a) a printed extract from the Register of Seamen’s Tickets 1845-1854 (BT113) held at the National Archives in Kew, listing ticket numbers, seaman’s first and last names, place and date born, first date at sea and designation (post held), age, and ticket details, (b) a list of Tiree Mariners 1848-1920 including ship’s name, mariner’s first and last names, age, birth place, current address, designation, voyage, and previous ship. See also 2010.53.14


Photocopy of Signal Card, 1908-1914

Colour copied cover and pages of a card notebook of Naval flag, semaphore and morse code signals produced in 1908 and reprinted in 1914. Belonged to Neil MacLean (Niall a` Mhuilinn), Millhouse, Cornaig, and used in 1917 during WW1. On the inside cover, Neil has written his name and addresses, as well as doodled, in pencil and ink. Accession includes another copy on card mocked-up into a replica notebook for display.



Internet page about the SS Empire Eland, Captain Donald Sinclair of Sandaig`s ship

Printed page from the internet about the steam ship Empire Eland (1920-1941), a cargo ship captained by Capt. Donald Sinclair of Sandaig, who was instrumental in saving lives when the HMS Sturdy was wrecked off Sandaig in 1940. He died when the Empire Eland was struck by a U-boat torpedo in the Atlantic on 15th September 1941.

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