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Politician (Bow Portion) (Possibly): Eriskay, Sea Of The Hebrides

Steamship (20th Century)(Possible)

Site Name Politician (Bow Portion) (Possibly): Eriskay, Sea Of The Hebrides

Classification Steamship (20th Century)(Possible)

Alternative Name(s) 'Ss Cabinet Minister'; London Merchant; Ru Hithinish;l Rosinish Point; Castle Bay; Acarseid Mhor; Politician (Bow Section)

Canmore ID 102866

Site Number NF80NW 8001

NGR NF 80346 09633

NGR Description NF c. 803 096

Datum WGS84 - Lat/Long

Permalink http://canmore.org.uk/site/102866

Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Western Isles
  • Parish Maritime - Western Isles
  • Former Region Western Isles Islands Area
  • Former District Maritime
  • Former County Not Applicable

Archaeology Notes

NF80NW 8001 c. 803 096

N57 4 W7 16.5

NLO: Acarseid Mhor [name centred NM 800 095]

Eriskay (Eiriosgaigh) [name centred NF 79 10].

Possibly on map sheet NF70NE.

For stern portion (NF 8081 1346: N57 6.075 W7 16.3333), see NF81SW 8001.

Quality of fix = PA

Horizontal Datum = OGB

Circumstances of Loss Details

-----------------------------

The POLITICIAN ran ashore on rocks in fog while on passage from Liverpool to New Orleans. This loss was the inspiration of the novel 'Whisky Galore' by Compton Mackenzie.

Surveying Details

-----------------------------

Aground at 57 04 00N, 007 16 30W, approximately. The wreck should have been broken up where she lay aground but this did happen.

Source: Lloyds.

17 November 1970. Approximately 4 tons of brass and copper [value ?1600] recovered from wreck lying in Castle Bay in April 1970.

Source; Lloyd's List 13 May 1970.

8 January 1975. Searches in the area to the SE of Ru Hithinish on Eriskay by a team of divers failed to locate any trace of this wreck. However, part of this vessel [stern section] was subsequently found in the sound of Eriskay. The bow section was not located.

Report by ASADA 'exercise wreck hunter'.

See 57 06 04.5N, 007 16 20W.

Hydrographic Office, 1995.

(Classified as steel steamship: no cargo specified, but former name cited as London Merchant, and date of loss as 5 February 1941). Politician: aft section only. (This vessel stranded off Rosinish [Roisinis] Point, on the E side of Eriskay).

Registration: British. Built 1923. 7939grt. Length: 137m. Beam: 18m.

(Locations cited as N57 6.1 W7 16.2 (aft portion) and N57 4 W7 16.5).

I G Whittaker 1998.

No contact was made by lead-line when a search was made for this wreck in 1976. Divers located a rock outcrop about 100mtrs NE; this may have been the snag.

Information from Lt Cdr N McEachan RN (Wrecks Officer, UKHO), 5 March 2008.

Activities

Reference (19 April 2012)

UKHO Identifier : 001883

Feature Class : Wreck

State : DEAD

Classification : Unclassified

Position (Lat/long) : 57.06667,-7.27500

Horizontal Datum : ORDNANCE SURVEY OF GREAT BRITAIN (1936)

WGS84 Position (Lat/long) : 57.06640,-7.27590

WGS84 Origin : 3-D Cartesian Shift (BW)

Position Quality : Unreliable

Depth Quality : Depth unknown

Water Depth : 10

Vertical Datum : Lowest Astronomical Tide

Name : POLITICIAN (BOW SECTION)

Type : SS

Flag : BRITISH

Length : 143.6

Beam : 17.7

Draught : 12.5

Tonnage : 7939

Tonnage Type : Gross

Cargo : GENERAL (INCLUDING BANKNOTES AND WHISKY)

Date Sunk : 05/02/1941

Contact Description : Partial wreck

Original Sensor : Reported Sinking

Original Detection Year : 1941

Original Source : Other

Circumstances of Loss : **EX-LONDON MERCHANT. BUILT IN 1923 BY FURNESS SHIPBUILDING CO. LTD, HAVERTON HILL-ON-TEES. OWNED AT TIME OF LOSS BY CHARENTE SS CO LTD. FOUR BOILERS, SCREW ENGINE, 2 STEAM TURBINES FOR 1004HP, SINGLE SHAFT. MACHINERY BY J BROWN & CO. LTD, GLASGOW. PASSAGE LIVERPOOL FOR NEW ORLEANS. RAN AGROUND ON ROCKS IN FOG AND HEAVY WEATHER. REPORTED TO BE CARRYING 243,000 BOTTLES OF SPIRITS. THIS LOSS WAS THE INSPIRATION FOR THE NOVEL 'WHISKY GALORE' BY COMPTON MACKENZIE. (SIBI).

**CHARENTE SS CO LTD WAS A SUBSIDIARY OF THOMAS & JAMES HARRISON, LIVERPOOL. PRESENTLY OWNED BY SS POLITICIAN PLC. (K MCDONALD, DIVER MAGAZINE, NOV '04).

Surveying Details : **AGROUND IN 570400N, 071630W, APPROX.

**WK SHOULD HAVE BEEN BROKEN UP WHERE SHE LAY AGROUND BUT THIS DID NOT HAPPEN. (LLOYDS).

**17.11.70 APPROX 4 TONS OF BRASS & COPPER (VALUE �1600) RECOVERED FROM WK LYING IN CASTLE BAY IN APRIL 1970. (LL 13.5.70).

**H1309/75 8.1.75 SEARCHES IN AREA TO THE SE OF RU HITHINISH ON ERISKAY BY A TEAM OF DIVERS FAILED TO LOCATE ANY TRACE OF THIS WRECK. HOWEVER, PART OF THIS VESSEL (STERN SECTION) WAS SUBSEQUENTLY FOUND IN THE SOUND OF ERISKAY. BOW SECTION WAS NOT LOCATED. (ASADA 'EXERCISE WRECK HUNTER', REPORT). SEE [1889] IN 570604.5N, 071620W. AMENDED TO DEAD.

Charting Comments : POSN FOR FILING ONLY [SEE 1889]

Date Last Amended : 10/12/2004

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