Build: 1906 by W Doxford & Sons, Ltd – Sunderland in the U.K.
Tumblehome has to me been one of the most oddball incorporation into ship design. Usually, the idea of sloping the decks gradually inward above the ship’s waterline can be a decently graceful idea. It can, however, go too far…
Bring on the turret deck ships:
The Tredegar Hall, along with the Erika Fritzen above were just two of the nearly two hundred of these vessels produced between 1893 and 1911. Though very odd, and very ugly, they were built with a purpose in mind. Inspired by whaleback ships, which I’ll get to later, they met with success because they could cut down on toll costs through the Suez Canal, which did not include cargo space under the water line when calculated for a particular ship. The result is a very obvious incorporation of extra cargo space into otherwise ordinary vessels, when viewed from the side, such as this view of the Nonsuch.
The notion of ordinary disappears pretty quickly as you take a closer look, however:
While not the only ships to attempt to squeak past the tolls, the trunk deck ships like the Trunkby tried too:
And while not the prettiest, definitely look a little it better than the turret deckers.
The amazing thing is that while these designs died out in 1911 with the revision of the Suez tolls, at least one, the Turret Cape, lasted until 1959. As for the Tradegar Hall, the CO of the UB-57 evidently didn’t think she deserved to sail the seas anymore, and sank her by torpedo in 1917.
I’ll leave you with a few more ugly examples to marvel with.
Grangesberg: This one’s a real monster.