Tue, 6th Nov 2018 11:00

Maritime and Scientific Models, Instruments & Art ('Speedy')

 
  Lot 90
 

90

THE SHIP'S BELL FROM H.M.S. AFRICA (1905) THE FIRST SHIP FROM WHICH AN AIRCRAFT WAS SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHED, 10TH JANUARY, 1912

THE SHIP'S BELL FROM H.M.S. AFRICA (1905) THE FIRST SHIP FROM WHICH AN AIRCRAFT WAS SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHED, 10TH JANUARY, 1912

cast in brass with red-filled lettering inscribed H.M.S. AFRICA and loop suspension (suspension adapted from crown type; clapper later) -- 13 x 12½in. (33 x 32cm.); together with iron bracket for wall suspension

One of eight King Edward VII Class battleships, Africa was built at Chatham Dockyard and launched 20th May 1905 being completed and commissioned in November 1906. Despite displacing nearly 16,000 tons and being given an impressive armament lead by four 12in. guns, she was rendered all but obsolete by the revolutionary Dreadnought which completed just a month later. After initial service in the Atlantic and Channel fleets, she returned to Chatham as flagship in 1911 but was relieved of this by her sister King Edward VII that November. Thus, when in January 1912 the Admiralty (sensing that aircraft may have an important future role with the navy) needed a ship to adapt for their experiments, Africa was available. Anchored in the River Medway, she was fitted with a 100ft downward-sloping ramp extending from foredeck to bow and tested for strength by the crew jumping up and down on it. Lt Charles Samson (1883-1931) climbed into the cockpit of a Gnome-engined Short Improved S.27 pusher seaplane and, on 10th January 1912, successfully completed the world's first powered flight from a ship. The aircraft moved quickly down the runway, dipped slightly after leaving it, but then pulled up and climbed easily. Samson circled Africa several times to the cheers of the crew and, after a few minutes, landed safely at an airfield ashore. It was a tentative start, but shipborne aviation had begun and by 1917 was an important part of naval operations. Africa survived the Great War (although 52 of her 800 crew were lost to Spanish Flu in September 1918), was placed in reserve in November 1918 and broken up at Newcastle in 1920.

Estimated at £2,000 - £3,000


 

THE SHIP'S BELL FROM H.M.S. AFRICA (1905) THE FIRST SHIP FROM WHICH AN AIRCRAFT WAS SUCCESSFULLY LAUNCHED, 10TH JANUARY, 1912

cast in brass with red-filled lettering inscribed H.M.S. AFRICA and loop suspension (suspension adapted from crown type; clapper later) -- 13 x 12½in. (33 x 32cm.); together with iron bracket for wall suspension

One of eight King Edward VII Class battleships, Africa was built at Chatham Dockyard and launched 20th May 1905 being completed and commissioned in November 1906. Despite displacing nearly 16,000 tons and being given an impressive armament lead by four 12in. guns, she was rendered all but obsolete by the revolutionary Dreadnought which completed just a month later. After initial service in the Atlantic and Channel fleets, she returned to Chatham as flagship in 1911 but was relieved of this by her sister King Edward VII that November. Thus, when in January 1912 the Admiralty (sensing that aircraft may have an important future role with the navy) needed a ship to adapt for their experiments, Africa was available. Anchored in the River Medway, she was fitted with a 100ft downward-sloping ramp extending from foredeck to bow and tested for strength by the crew jumping up and down on it. Lt Charles Samson (1883-1931) climbed into the cockpit of a Gnome-engined Short Improved S.27 pusher seaplane and, on 10th January 1912, successfully completed the world's first powered flight from a ship. The aircraft moved quickly down the runway, dipped slightly after leaving it, but then pulled up and climbed easily. Samson circled Africa several times to the cheers of the crew and, after a few minutes, landed safely at an airfield ashore. It was a tentative start, but shipborne aviation had begun and by 1917 was an important part of naval operations. Africa survived the Great War (although 52 of her 800 crew were lost to Spanish Flu in September 1918), was placed in reserve in November 1918 and broken up at Newcastle in 1920.

Auction: Maritime and Scientific Models, Instruments & Art ('Speedy'), Tue, 6th Nov 2018

Page turning catalogue here

Downloadable bid form here

Main View and Sale Venue:
25 Blythe Road
London, W14 0PD

Large Object View and Post-Sale Collection:
6 Imperial Studios
3-11 Imperial Road
London, SW6 2AG

 

Press enquiries: Suzanne Trisk press@charlesmillerltd.com

Viewing

Saturday, 3rd November
(12noon-5pm)
Sunday, 4th November
(12noon-5pm)
Monday, 5th November
(10am-5pm)
Tuesday, 6th November
(10am-11am - limited view only)

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