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Imperator and Aquitania

Discussion in 'Ships' started by milo hicks, Dec 3, 2018.

  1. milo hicks

    milo hicks Member

    Hello all, I'm a new member here - with a question. I am researching for a book about the early steamships of the CPR - namely the Empress of Asia and Empress of Russia. Both featured public rooms designed by George A. Crawley, a curious "amateur architect" with no formal training, thus no knowledge of technical drawing. Crawley required a draftsman or an architect to carry out his architectural vision. And he did have very informed ideas, the best known of which found their way into his single universally known achievement - Westbury House on Long Island. The man seems to have had enough money to get by without a job. He was socially well-positioned in London. I believe that Crawley may have gotten his start in the liner interior realm though the firm of Thornton-Smith, which received the contracts to design the smoking rooms aboard the Aquitania and Imperator. Thorton-Smith, aside from providing design expertise, specialized in the catalogue sale of period antiques. George Crawley no doubt bought furniture and paneling and such for his renovation of the Tudor house called "Crowhurst" (between the years 1907 and 1910). My question is whether Thorton-Smith consulted with Crawley on the Imperator and Aquitania interiors (or vice versa) or whether Crawley had any involvement at all. He had to get his start somewhere! The possibility is that Arthur Davis (architect for Cunard on Aquitania and co-designer with Charles Mewes on the Imperator) sought out Crawley for his well-known architectural taste and kknowledge of historical style. Regarding the Empress interiors, initial proposals came from Thornton-Smith, though Maitland Kersey (consultant with the CPR) knew Crawley to be the author of the plans. Crawley was eventually asked to accept the position of "consulting architect" for the Empress interiors, and all subsequent realized designs feature his name. Have I answered my own question? Has anyone come across related imformation? I'd be much obliged to learn of any related tidbit. Thank you.
     
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