# 16068

[SHIPBOARD PRINTING] Southern Cross and Lusitania Herald. No. 1. Wednesday, October 20th, 1880.

$2,200.00 AUD

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[Lusitania : at sea, Australia bound], October 20 1880. Folio, [4] pp bifolium of bluish laid paper with watermark of W. Howard Kent and Britannia surmounted by crown, lightly ruled in blue; drop-head title; the first 3 pages with mimeographed printing in purple ink of a manuscript text; pages 1 and 2 in two columns, page 3 with single column text, and a cartoon illustration; final page not printed, but with a contemporary annotation in ink referring to one of the passengers, ‘David Coffey / Shoes Boots / Merchandise’; original folds, two spots of old glue residue at bottom and top margins (not encroaching on text); the printing has faded badly in a couple of sections, although the text is complete and mostly legible; [together with] [Concert Programme] Orient S.S. Lusitania / London to Sydney / Grand Vocal and Instrumental Concert / Friday 18th Oct. 1880. [Lusitania : at sea, Australia bound], October 18 1880. Single leaf, small octavo (176 x 113 mm), on laid paper, printed on one side only in purple ink (as the preceding item), comprising a manuscript list of the 15 acts performed at a concert by named passengers; original vertical and horizontal folds, in very good condition.

Neither the Southern Cross and Lusitania Herald nor its associated concert programme is recorded. The copies we offer here, as well as being extremely rare examples of nineteenth century shipboard printing in general, are possibly unique, and, in much the same way as a passenger’s ship board diary, they provide an insight into life on an emigrant ship and the various activities that were organised to relieve the tedium on the long voyage to Australia.

The Lusitania was built in 1871 for the Pacific Steam Navigation Company, but in 1877 was transferred to the Orient Line. She first sailed on the Orient Line’s new service from London to Melbourne on 28 June 1877. The passage at that time (prior to opening of the Suez Canal in 1881) was around 7 weeks. On her second outward voyage of 1880 the Lusitania sailed from London on September 30 and Plymouth on October 2, arriving at Melbourne on November 15. The Southern Cross and Lusitania Herald includes snippets of news of the outside world received by telegram at St. Vincent (Cape Verde), where the ship called on October 11, and informaton about ship board activities such as music and a spelling bee. About half of the third page is taken up by a fairly crude lampoon of the ship’s captain, captioned “Our Chairman”. The concert programme lists musical pieces or songs performed by various first and second class passengers, one of whom is a Mr. Coffey (mentioned on the back of the Southern Cross); other names include Mrs. Yeats, Mrs. and Miss Cohn, and Miss Bowman.

The type of printing process used on board the Lusitania appears to have been a very early form of stencil or mimeograph such as the Papyograph (patented 1874) or Trypograph (patented 1877).