TITANIC'S SISTER OLYMPIC WW1 DAZZLE SCHEME

Nigel Hampson

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Jan 11, 2006
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Hello everyone.

I am researching the dazzle colour schemes assigned to the civilian liners during WW1 while they were used as troopers and am particularly interested in OLYMPICS schemes. From the little I have found out so far, she seems to have had at least 3.
I also stress the word COLOUR, as they were apparently quite garish and bright. They were devised by Norman Wilkinson - the same artist who painted the pictures of "Approach to the New world", and "Approach to Plymouth Harbour", these pictures as most will know, hung in the first class lounges of Olympic and Titanic respectively.

If anyone can help me with this I would be extremely grateful, my email is included at the top and I welcome contact.
Many thanks to all,

Nigel Hampson
 
Jan 5, 2001
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I can say that I was surprised to find the scheme 'dullish' -- blues, greys and so on, rather than yellows, reds and blues, as was the common misconception from that well known illustration based on that aerial view at the Imperial War Museum.

Bruce Beveridge has been pushing me to find the plans of her dazzle paint shapes, but so far I have had no luck. I wonder if there were any, or just a creative paintbrush!

Best regards,

Mark.
 
Apr 11, 2001
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40481.jpg
This is a copy of a photo purchased by a chum in Massachusetts-have had it about 10 years. Was really interested to see her port side- that's the one hard to find.
 
Sep 2, 2009
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Shelly:

That chum in MA, wouldn't have the initals J.A.C. would he? As I have a photocopy of some research he conducted showing the Olympic's three port side dazzle paint scheme's and a description of the colors. And also a series of illustrations showing these various scheme's. I also have a few other scans from the collection of Brian H. in NC. I will have to look through the collection and find them.
 
Apr 11, 2001
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Fellas- yep, you bet, and looks like we all travel in good company- my walls are full of our mutual buddy's bounty!
 
Jan 5, 2001
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Hi!

Good company certainly.

Steve, I am trying to send some Aquitania stuff to you. Is your e-mail AWOL?

Best regards,

Mark.
 
Nov 8, 2003
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ok i may be missing the point here - why wold alot of attention grabbing strangely painted geometric shapes camoflague a ship at sea? ok, olympics classic paint scheme may have been a bit obvious to any u boats but surely you are going to noticce something like that aswell plus, it has CLOUDS OF SMOKE COMING OUT OF THE TOP! How would they disguise that?
 
Jan 21, 2003
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This may be off topic in here but i didnt want to waste space with a new thread. I was wondering in either paint scheme during olympics war career if it was just black and white
 

Mark Baber

Moderator
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Dec 29, 2000
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Hello, Chris---

It was a little off-topic where you originally posted it, but I think your message fits just fine in this subtopic.
 

Eric Longo

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Aug 13, 2004
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Hi,
I had the notion that the colors used, which ranged from bright blues to mustard yellows with possibly some reds might optically blend from a distance into a greenish color and cause the ship to blur into the horizon. This idea was described in "Dazzle and Drab" my JMG, along with a reproduction of a photograph from my collection of Mauretania in Dazzle taken at Queenstown.

Best,
Eric2
 
Dec 29, 2006
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A query has arisen on another site regarding an unidentified ocean liner which can be found on Wikipedia at:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Leslie_Drewry

The profile suggests the Olympic or the Aquitania, while the putative location is Imbros, circa 1915. The unidentified vessel appears to be in civilian livery, with white upper works, so does this date and location tie-up? Did the Olympic or Aquitania ever have black funnels?
 
Dec 2, 2000
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Easley South Carolina
Actually, that liner looks like the Lusitania. (Notice the absense of the cowl type vents on the upperworks which were so prominant on both the Aquatania and Mauritania.) If this is the case, this would be an exceedingly rare photo of the ship near the end of her life.
 

Eric Longo

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Aug 13, 2004
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Hi Mike,

my guess is that would be the Mauretania at Gallipoli, early May of 1915. The photograph is likely after April 25th, as Mr. Drewry's head wound does not seem visible or slowing him down. Lusitania could not have been at that location - correct?

Best,
Eric
 
Aug 8, 2007
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The profile looks like Mauretania to me. If the location stated on the caption is correct, it could not have been Lusitania, as she didn't see any war duties. The photo is rather indistinct, and because of the distance and blurriness, I think her cowl vents are there but it is difficult to make them out.

Russell
 
Dec 2, 2000
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>>Lusitania could not have been at that location - correct?<<

Since the Lusitania never went to that part of the world, that would be the smart bet. The caption states the name of the location was Imbros (See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Imbros ). If this is correct, then it would have to be the Mauritania. The profile is just wrong for any other ship. However, if the caption is incorrect, all bets are off! Try as I might, I just can't make out any of the cowl vents which were such a destinctive part of Mauritania's profile.

However, the photo isn't the best and niether are my eyes. The short version is that you could be right and I could be wrong.