All ships lifeboats were fitted with plaques denoting which vessel they came from, usually in brass or bronze, fitted to either side of the boats bow, today they are choice souvenirs, a real tangible piece of the ship herself.
Pursers locker were recently lucky enough to secure an original example from one of the most famous transatlantic liners of all-time, titanic’s lucky sister ship, the ‘Olympic’.
Manufactured around c-1911 the time of the ships launch, the original cast bronze lifeboat plaque was used on one of the ships original lifeboats from the start until the end, the ships full career.
Silver plated bronze, with black lacquering, mounted on original Olympic oak.
This plaque presented to a Mr Norman Hyslop, an electrician and employee of Harland & Wolff, who had know the ship all her service life. He retired at the same time the ship was sent to the breakers. This plaque was presented to him by White Star line for the work he had done on behalf of her original builders, Harland & Wolff. It was at this time it was silver plated and lacquered. It stayed in Mr Swancoat's family until it was was sold from the estate at a nautical auction in the Isle of Wight in 2010, then sold into a private collection until recently.
These plaques are extremely rare, I have only seen a handful in 20 odd years, I have seen more titanic examples, a never one with such great provenance like this, its unique.
Just over 15.5" long. Mounted on original oak from Olympic.