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Shaw Savill & Albion Co Ltd

Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0064 SSS
Held at: National Maritime Museum
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Full title: Shaw Savill & Albion Co Ltd
Date(s): 1924-[1975]
Level of description: Collection
Extent: 100ft: 30m
Name of creator(s): Shaw Savill & Albion Co Ltd


Administrative/Biographical history:

From their first venture in 1858, Shaw and Savill specialized in the New Zealand trade. When they gained a share of the New Zealand Government contract for a regular mail, passenger and cargo service between the United Kingdom and New Zealand, they began operating a joint service with the White Star Line. In 1899 the White Star Line began a steamship service from Liverpool to Australia via the Cape and in 1905 Shaw Savill and the White Star Line acquired a further interest in the Australian trade when they became the major shareholders in the Aberdeen Line. The Royal Mail Group purchased the White Star Line in 1926 and in 1928 the Australian Government's Commonwealth Line which was then amalgamated with the Aberdeen Line to provide a fortnightly service from London to Australia via Suez and Colombo. The group also acquired the major shareholding in Shaw Savill in 1928, but after the group's collapse and the reorganization which followed this, Shaw Savill became part of the Furness Withy Group (q.v.) in 1933. In 1939 a new fast passenger and cargo service to New Zealand via the Cape and Australia was inaugurated. In the postwar period many of the new vessels were designed without accommodation for passengers, but in 1955 the SOUTHERN CROSS was built solely for passengers and with one-class accommodation to operate on a new round-the-world route. When she was joined by her sister ship the NORTHERN STAR they maintained eight round-the-world sailings a year until the decline in the passenger trade in the early 1970s.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of Shaw Savill and Albion Co Ltd. The bulk of the correspondence files belong to the period 1947 to 1965, although the earliest paper is dated 1924. They are concerned with the building and trials of new vessels, ships in service, standard freight rates and routine instructions to masters. There are summaries of passage money and numbers of passengers, 1900 to 1946; analyses of passage money, outward, 1946 to 1960, 1970 to 1972; passage money, homeward, 1965 to 1968. the records cover chartered vessels as well as the Company's own ships. (Although there is some information about individual passengers, this is not a complete record of passengers carried: more comprehensive lists can be found in the passenger lists in the Board of Trade records at the Public Record Office.). In 1969 a series of refrigerator and engine logs, 1956 to 1962, were deposited as well as deck logs, 1944 to 1965.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

Conditions governing access:

Please contact the Archive for further information.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Please contact the Archive for further information.

Finding aids:

Detailed catalogue online at the: National Maritime Museum website .

Archival Information

Archival history:

Most of the Company's records had been destroyed in the Second World War. When the Passenger Office in the Haymarket, London, was closed in 1975, its records were also deposited in the Museum.

Immediate source of acquisition:

The records were donated by the Company in 1981.

Allied Materials

Related material:

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:
Edited by Sarah Drewery, Sep 2011.

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:

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