Cargo Holds

Would Dragon's blood be considered interesting?
(No, I ain't kidding.)


Brown Brothers and Company shipped 76 cases of dragon's blood- the sap from a type of tree found on Canary Islands, it was used to color wood varnish and women's makeup...

Lol, it would've been quite interesting had they shipped what you'd think dragon's blood would be. But it wasn't. I don't like the name very much, it's very deceiving...

- Smith [email protected]
Lol, it would've been quite interesting had they shipped what you'd think dragon's blood would be. But it wasn't. I don't like the name very much, it's very deceiving... ====================================

LOL! I quite like the name and think it delightfully evocative and an indication of the substance's colouring qualities if nothing else. Also, in the context of the times, people knew exactly what they were getting with 'dragon's blood'. There's just as many potentially 'deceptive' names for things around now, that if they were interpreted literally would lead to some interesting times.... Gosh, reminds me of the 'fuller's earth' conversation a while back.

I believe it was the extract from the East Indian Palm (Calamus draco) that was used in artists' varnishes, etc, and extracts from other plants that were used in pharmacopoeia. According to Brewer's (yes, I did look this up) there's a nice mythological link back to Seigfried bathing in dragon's blood to give himself immunity from injury - of course a linden leaf fell on him during the process, thus he wasn't completely bathed after all. Shades of Achilles, anyone? There's also a process called/using 'dragon's blood' in printmaking that provides a resist for parts of the image being printed: you can see the link to Seigfried's bath, don't you. And I never thought I'd get to write this on ET - want to come up and see my etchings sometime... ;)
Hi everyone,

I have been wondering how the the forward cargo holds (preferably the No.3 hold) were set up.

Specifically the general layout of the room, if the fireman's passage fully divided the room (or only went halfway up, with space above), and if there were any other entrances into the hold, other than the forward watertight doors leading into cargo hold No.2, and the two doors located near boiler room 6.

Kind of an interesting question I suppose, but I have always wondered how they appeared in reality, and if anyone has even a slightly better idea than I do please feel free to share.

Best regards,


Jim Currie

Hello James.

I suspect that the tunnel would, as in other ships, run through the center of the hold with spaces on either side. Here is one of my terrible sketches showing how t might have looked:
hold access.png


Here's a mock-up of the hold.

The area in the Yellow box is the #3 cargo hold. It's a 2-storey room, with the cargo shaft in the forward ceiling. The Fireman's tunnel is a single-level tunnel between the green lines. The room immediately aft (right side) is a coal bunker. Inside the coal bunker at the aft (right) end is the junction room with the escape ladder, which you can see rising up into the deck above. The room immediately forward (left side) is Cargo hold #2. In the forward part of the room (which is modeled here as a 1-storey compartment level with the Fireman's passage) is a small compartment for storing fresh water. It's likely the fresh water storage went all the way to the top (2-stories). The large room at the very right edge of the picture is Boiler room #6.

I believe there were large stabilizing fins built into the hull of the ship for rigidity, and columns supporting the ceiling, which are modeled here.

Here's a more distant view, showing the Fireman's passage through cargo hold #3 and #2. Again, the yellow box is around Cargo Hold #3
The green line runs the length of the Fireman's passage. On the forward (left) end of the fireman's passage is the enclosed, watertight casing which holds the twin spiral staircases.

Here is a view inside the cargo hold, forward port side, looking aft-starboard. We're standing on top of the water tank (actually, we'd probably be enclosed inside it - but in this model it's only 1-storey high). You can see the hole in the ceiling which is the cargo hatch. You may also be able to see, in the aft (far) end of the room, hiding behind the support column, just next to the Fireman's passage, the door into the junction room.

Here's a view from below the cargo hatch looking up (port side looking across to starboard). You can see the double doors leading to the mail room (lower and upper doors.) And you can also see the door to the specie room, just next to the small white cross in the center of the image. I put holes in the cargo hatches so I can move through them in this model the wall in the left lower corner is the water tank, which probably rose up to the ceiling.

Because the lower-class working crew had potential access to this room, and because the mail and specie room were directly above, I imagine there was no way to access the upper level, and especially not the cargo shaft while at sea. I don't believe there were doors leading forward to cargo hold #2. I think its very unlikely that the fireman's tunnel was 2 stories. There was no need for it, and it would have hindered the movement of cargo through the cargo hatch, which was directly above.



My layout is totally in agreement with Jim's. There were probably rails or pallets of wood lining the walls, and I would guess various eye bolts and such to tie things down. I don't have those in my model.

Robby House

Wow, I'm really impressed that Harlan & Wolf went to such extremes in their application of luxurious detail such as the ceramic tiling and plush red carpeting inside Hold #3! They really went all out I'm telling ya! ;-)