Offered for sale are two Royal Worcester Blue Funnel Line trinket dishes, each decorated with an image of one of their ships. They are the Agamemnon & the Orestes. SS Agamemnon was one of the first successful long-distance merchant steamships. She was built in 1865 to trade between Britain and China, and competed with tea clippers before and after the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869. She brought together three improvements in steamship design: higher boiler pressure, an efficient and compact compound steam engine, and a hull form with modest power requirements. The S.S. Orestes originally carried freight and was later converted to a passenger ship. It was built in 1894 and was in service for over thirty years . Alfred Holt and Company, trading as Blue Funnel Line, was a UK shipping company that was founded in 1866 and operated merchant ships for 122 years. Alfred Holt (13 June 1829 – 28 November 1911) was a British engineer, ship owner and merchant. He lived at Crofton, Aigburth in Liverpool, England. Holt is credited with establishing the long distance steamship by developing a type that replaced sailing clippers on the route from Britain to China. Ships of the Blue Funnel fleet all had names from classical Greek legend or history. The majority were cargo ships, but most of the Ocean SS Co cargo ships also had capacity for a few passengers. The line also had a small number of purely passenger vessels.
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