Steam Yacht Liberty.

Photo reference number: 1025

The Steam Yacht Liberty was designed by G L Watson and Company and built in 1908 by Ramage and Ferguson. It had a fascinating service at one time owned by a great benefactor of Newport before it was broken up in 1938, when it returned home, so to speak.

The 304 ft long Liberty was constructed of steel and had a beam of 36.5 ft and a draught of 16 ft. It had two triple expansion engines and was originally built for Joseph Pulitzer who owned her until 1912. Designed with an aversion to noise it was heavily insulated, sharp edges reduced to curves and gentle slopes instead of steps.

In 1912 James Ross became Liberty's owner and he renamed her Glencairn.

By 1914 she had been sold to Lord Tredegar, who reversed her name to Liberty. He lived in a large stately home in the town and the newspapers of the period carried pictures of him with his yacht at Newport Docks. He kept the yacht for less than a year before she was hired to the Royal Navy as an auxiliary patrol vessel.

Her design was to become invaluable when she was utilised as a hospital ship (Liberty lV, Hospital Ship No 10) in the First World War. Painted white with dark coloured funnels, broad red band on her hull and two large red crosses port and starboard.

In 1919 she was sold to Sir Robert and Lady Houston.

She will be remembered for her anti-government slogans festooning the Liberty at various regattas to advertise the suffragette movement.

Scrapped at Cashmore's Newport January 1938.

Cashmore's Newport