Tea Clipper Cutty Sark. This model of the „Cutty Sark“ made entirely of silver in a scale of 1:150 entered our collection as part of the estate of Heinrich Heitmann in 2009. It has since been part of our Treasure Chamber on deck 8 of the museum.
She is the symbol of the end of an era in shipping: the „Cutty Sark“.
This tea clipper was built in 1869 on the River Leven in Scotland. However, that year also saw the opening of the Suez Canal, which gave steamships a fast route for transporting cargo between Europe and the Far East. The „Cutty Sark“ was a pure sailing cargo ship designed for speed. Her design incorporated the most advanced sailing technology of her time which enabled her to reach an astonishing top speed of 17.5 knots. This may be one of the reasons why she was the last clipper to be used as a cargo ship in 1922. From the beginning, her career was an epic but futile struggle against the faster and cheaper steamships. She took part in the legendary tea clipper races between the United Kingdom and China. In 1883, she found a new purpose, transporting Australian wool to the UK. Eventually, steamers took over this route as well. Her owner, the entrepreneur Jock Willis, sold her to Joaquim Antunes Ferreira’s Portuguese company in 1895. From then on, she sailed under the Portuguese flag and was renamed „Ferreira“. In 1922, she was sold to Companhia Nacional de Navegaçao and renamed „Maria do Amparo“ for a short time. In the same year, she was bought by Wilfred Dowman, a retired captain from Cornwall. Her original name and rigging were restored, and she became a cadet training ship. Downman died in 1936 and his widow Catharine Dowman, whose family fortune financed the purchase of the „Cutty Sark“, donated the ship to the Incorporated Thames Nautical Training College along with a sum of money for its maintenance.
In 1953, the ship was handed over to the Cutty Sark Preservation Society and later moved to a special dry dock in Greenwich. She became part of the British National Historic Fleet and a museum ship. After a fire in 2007, the ship was restored and reopened to the public in 2012. A minor fire caused some damage again in 2014, but she has since been restored and is a must-see for any Greenwich visitor.
This model of the „Cutty Sark“ made entirely of silver in a scale of 1:150 entered our collection as part of the estate of Heinrich Heitmann in 2009. It has since been part of our Treasure Chamber on deck 8 of the museum.