SS Athenia Glasgow Museums update, pictures and keys which came from Athenia's silver room
Many thanks for your contacts over the last few weeks - I've contacted them all with details of the project. Here's a quick update of our progress with the Athenia story to date - information about all the objects we are using is now with the designers who will come up with an interesting way of displaying and interpreting them. We will then begin work on the audio-visual element of the story - which is where the information from most of the "Ahoy" correspondents will come in useful as we'll be using film, photographs and recordings.
I've attached images of some of the object we will be using in the display - two views of our builder's model of the vessel, which will of course be the centrepiece of the display, then there is a large & colourful poster adverting the (as it was at the time) Anchor-Donaldson sailings to Canada in 1923, the year that Athenia entered service. If you look at the sailor's cap-band you can see that he's representing the Athenia crew in the poster. We hope to be able to make it clear to people that though this vessel's last voyage ended in tragedy she had been a very popular vessel on regular trans-Atlantic and cruising routes. We have a variety of Athenia souvenirs we'll be displaying, as well as a bunch of keys which came from Athenia's silver room. We're not sure at this time how the keys came off the Athenia, but they ended up in our collection in the 1970s. Perhaps some "Ahoy" readers might be able to help with information?
One of the items we have which relates directly to the sinking is a postcard showing the vessel which was posted on the afternoon of the 2nd September 1939. The text of the note on the back reads "We have finally got on the boat with some trouble and excitement, had to leave Bradford yesterday. I left Ian's saw all parcelled up ready to post so he will get it. I hope nothing starts up. (Sadie)". Sadie Loudon, her husband and son were due to sail to Canada - they survived the sinking, though we don't have many more details of their rescue.
I will be passing the Athenia story into other hands soon, as I am going off on maternity leave until October 2008. I am going to leave a print out of all the email contacts that have been made, and ask that the person who is appointed to cover my post to contact everyone with an update as things progress in the New Year.
Please feel free to use any of this information on your site - the images are all copyright of Glasgow Museums.
Very best wishes,
Copyright Glasgow Museums