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Ship History - SS Edina

SS Edina

Image: SS Edina

Source: Museum Victoria

The Edina was one of the longest serving steam vessels anywhere in the world. Built on the Clyde by Barclay, Curle & Co. she was an iron hull single screw steamer of 322 tons with three masts. In 1855 Edina was requisitioned by the Admiralty from her owners the Leith, Hull & Hamburg Steam Packet Co. to carry stores and horses to the Black Sea during the Crimean War. After return to her owners Edina traded around the UK and Mediterranean before being purchased and used as a blockade runner during the American Civil War carrying cotton from the Confederate states in 1861. Edina arrived in Melbourne under sail in March 1863 and was purchased by Stephen Henty for use from ports in western Victoria and later carried gold prospectors across the Tasman to New Zealand. After a refit in 1870 she was used in the coastal trade along the Queensland coast for Howard Smith until returning to Victoria and the Melbourne-Geelong trade as a cargo-passenger vessel.

The Edina had two narrow escapes from destruction in 1898 and 1899 when she collided with other steamers, both being sunk. A further refit in 1917 altered her appearance with a new mast, funnel, bridge and promenade deck. By 1924 Edina had made over 12,000 Melbourne-Geelong passages and carried over one million people on the service. A further collision in July 1931 which sank the tug Hovell forced Edina onto a mudbank on Port Phillip Bay. She was taken out of service in 1938 but was later renamed Dinah and used as a lighter until 1958 when she was broken up and her remains used as land-fill.

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