Shipspotters all over the world => Help and Advice => Topic started by: itsfoto on November 17, 2020, 11:27:23 am

Title: ANCONA 1888
Post by: itsfoto on November 17, 2020, 11:27:23 am
In 1905 the Danish Sail Training ship GEORG STAGE (now JOSEPH CONRAD) collided just outside the port of Copenhagen with a British steamer, ANCONA. GEORG STAGE sank, 22 trainees drowned. GS was raised again (obviously), and was exonerated altogether. That's the story.

Now, I have in my piles of papers the attached copy of a copy of what was presumably a newspaper clipping. I have little doubt that it actually does show the ANCONA in question, but the quality of it, oh dear.

A little more about the ANCONA: She was built in 1888 as yard no. 85 by Ramage & Ferguson. 75,9 m x 10,1 m length x beam, 1207 t, 1168 Grt. Ownership seems a little more challenging to pin down. My notes say: Hugo & van Emmerik or Leith, Hull & Hamburg Steam Packet Co. Ltd. (managed by James Currie & Co. (Walter Runciman & Co. Ltd.)). I know far too little about shipowner and management organisation in the UK in those times to make anything useful of this.

But my question is a different one anyway: Is anyone able to point me in a promising direction to find a better copy or picture of the ANCONA than the one shown here? (Btw, my notes even mention an IMO no.: 95205, but again, how could that help?)


Title: Re: ANCONA 1888
Post by: davidships on November 17, 2020, 03:19:52 pm
Hello Uwe

It was a tragic occurrence, and the circumstances seem somewhat confusing.  The two ships' captains each stated that their ship kept a steady course and it was the other that "did the unexpected".  The Danish maritime court exonorated Captain Mitchell from blame (but that was really the only part of the court decision reported in the British newspapers).  It was stated by the Danish captain that the prompt and efficient actions of Captain Mitchell and his crew, after the collision, saved many lives of both cadets and crew of GEORGE STAGE.  It would be interesting to know what the maritime court actually said about the causes of the collision. The same court did later rule that the owners of ANCONA were liable for the cost of the raising and repair of GEORGE STADE. It is a bit confusing, but perhaps that was really an insurance matter?

For description of the ANCONA, see (  You can see that that 95205 was the British Official Number (almost a century before the IMO number was instituted.  "Hugo & van Emmerik" were the Hamburg agents for the Leith, Hull & Hamburg company. You can ignore the reference to Walter Runciman & Co as they were not involved with Currie Line until the 1960s.

No other photo found so far.