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House flags of British shipping companies (11)

Last modified: 2004-08-14 by rob raeside
Keywords: house flag | falkland islands trading co | federal steam navigation | furness lines | everard | ellerman |
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Eagle Oil and Shipping Co.

[Eagle Oil and Shipping Co. houseflag] by Jarig Bakker

Yellow with a thick black band top and bottom. In the centre, a black eagle displayed. Source: Sampson (1957)
James Dignan, 19 October 2003

Eagle Oil & Shipping Co., Ltd. (no particulars found on the company) - yellow bordered black top and below, with in yellow an eagle with spread wings on a pedestal (?), all black
Jarig Bakker, 20 October 2003

Larousse Commercial Illustré (1930) shows Eagle Oil Transport Co. Ltd., London: yellow, thin black horizontal edges and a standing black eagle with outstretched wings in the centre. Both edges seem to be one fifth of flag height and the eagle, one half of flag height besides two thirds of flag width. It is difficult to make out if the eagle stands on something but I think not.
Jan Mertens, 19 May 2004

Eastern Telegraph Company

[Eastern Telegraph Company houseflag] located by David Prothero, 12 July 2003

[Eastern Telegraph Co. houseflag] by Rob Raeside

According to the Liverpool Journal of Commerce chart of 1895 the Eastern Telegraph Co. Ltd. previously had a vertical triband of red-white-blue bearing the letters "ETC" [white on colour, red on white]. The flag shown above by David is recorded from Griffin 1895 on though Lloyds 1904 shows a slightly different version with the letters more widely spread and dots after them but their 1912 edition brings it into line.
Neale Rosanoski, 23 February 2004

Elders & Fyffes

[Elders & Fyffes houseflag] by James Dignan

Based on Sampson (1957)

Bristol - Jamaica and Central America
Houseflag: blue, with white diamond and E&F in blue.
Jarig Bakker, 13 October 2003

Elders & Fyffes, London: Larousse Commercial Illustré (1930) shows this flag as blue with a white diamond bearing blue characters (without serifs) `E & F' in the centre, the `&' being somewhat smaller than the letters. Sampson's (1957) image has a slightly larger diamond.
Jan Mertens, 4 June 2004

Elder Dempster and Co. Ltd.

[Elder Dempster Agencies Ltd] by Jorge Candeias

Elder Dempster and Co.Ld., Liverpool. White swallow-tail with tapering edges, a red St George's cross bearing a yellow royal crown in the centre. A 1953 artistic
impression can be seen here:
Jan Mertens, 19 May 2004

This shipping line may properly be placed in the Nigerian series.

Ellerman Group

[Ellerman Group pennant] by James Dignan

Based on Sampson (1957)

Stewart & Styring (1963) shows this as a common pennant used for Ellerman, but the Ellerman & Papayanni Line flag (a blue pennant flying under the pennant) has the lettering "P & Co". Helvetica with the 'o' half the size of the C and aligned with the top of the "C", lettering in white, extending ~2/3 the length of the fly.
Ellerman and Papayanni - Formed in 1855, Papayanni Brothers joined the Ellerman Group in 1901 and became Ellerman & Papayanni Line.
Phil Nelson
, 12 October 2003

After 1973 all constituent Ellerman companies were combined into Ellerman City Liners which in 1987 became Cunard-Ellerman.
Phil Nelson, 12 October 2003

Referred to as  Ellerman Line, Liverpool, in Larousse Commercial Illustré (1930). Larousse Commercial Illustré (1930) also shows Ellerman Lines City Line Ltd., Glasgow: a small(er drawn) red flag with white letters (no serifs) SS. Letters about one half of flag height. An elongated pennant of the Ellerman Line above, and by one fourth longer than, this flag. The pennant's height is half the flag's.
Jan Mertens, 16 May 2004

Ellerman & Bucknall Steamship Co.

[Ellerman & Bucknall Steamship Co. houseflag] by James Dignan

Based on Sampson (1957)
James Dignan, 12 October 2003

Blue Pennant with JRE in white over a blue flag with red E&B in three white diamonds (the Bucknell Line had the same flag with red BSL in three white diamonds).
Jarig Bakker, 12 October 2003

Ellerman & Bucknall (Steamships) Co Ltd; (established in 1740 as Henry Bucknall & Sons, name changed to Henry Bucknall & Co by 1880, Bucknall Nephews established 1890s, incorporated as Bucknall Steamship Lines Ltd in 1900, name changed as given in 1914).
Phil Nelson, 12 October 2003

Ellerman's Wilson Line

[Ellerman's Wilson Line houseflag] by James Dignan

Based on Sampson (1957)
James Dignan, 12 October 2003

Founded in the early years of the nineteenth century, the Wilson Line became the largest privately owned steamship fleet in the world. Based in Hull, its main trade was to and from Scandinavia and the Baltic States although the Wilson Line also carried cargoes to the USA, the Mediterranean and India. Emigrants were an important part of the company's business. Large numbers of Norwegians, Swedes and Jewish refugees of the Tsarist pogroms were brought into Hull, transported overland to Liverpool and shipped to America. In the 1890s Wilson Line ships carried more cargo to the USA than the ships of any other line.

By 1919, losses from the fleet were such that the line was put up for sale. Bought by Ellerman, the name changed slightly but the old ways continued. Ellerman's Wilson Line remained independent of the rest of the Ellerman empire. Rebuilding the fleet was a priority but trading conditions were difficult - with too many ships chasing the available cargo. The Second World War saw a reduction in fleet size from thirty-five to just nine and another rebuilding programme got under way in 1945. The once-lucrative American trade ceased in 1961 and the Wilson Line began the use of roll-on, roll-off ferries for its Gothenburg service in 1966.

In 1983, then entire Ellerman Group was put up for sale. By 1987, the company was in the hands of Trafalgar House and called Cunard-Ellerman. In 1991 P&O purchased the Ellerman Group container business and sold the remaining four ships. Every trace of Wilsons, once the largest independent steamship company in the world, had now vanished.
Phil Nelson, 13 October 2003

There is a difference between the burgee used as the houseflag of Ellerman & Papayanni Lines and the pennants used on top of the houseflags of the other Ellerman companies:
a. the houseflag of Ellerman & Papayanni Lines is as you sent it (216x324)
b. the pennants: 108x360 (approximately)
The new houseflag of Ellerman & Papayanni Lines has two equally high and wide pennants (108x360 (approximately)
1. blue with white letters JRE
2. blue with white letters P&Co (o uppercase)

Jarig Bakker, 13 October 2003

Esso Transportation Co., Ltd

[Esso Transportation Co., Ltd houseflag] by Jarig Bakker

Esso Transportation Co., Ltd (also Esso Petroleum Co., Ltd., and practically all affiliates of Standard Oil Co. of New Jersey) - White ground; blue ellipse in center containing Esso in red letters.
Jarig Bakker, 20 October 2003

F. E. T. Everard & Sons Ltd.

[F. E. T. Everard & Sons Ltd. houseflag] by Ivan Sache, 17 March 2004

The flag is quartered per saltire red and white.

The flag of F. E. T. Everard is identical to that of the Hongkong & Shanghai Banking Corporation, one of the major High Street banks in the UK. This in turn is owned by HSBC Group plc, and I wonder whether they also own Everards or if in the past there was a common ownership.
Ron Lahav, 17 March 2004

The Swire group also has a connection with Hong Kong and a similar flag, differing only by a vertical blue stripe in the middle of the flag. See this page for reference.
Ivan Sache, 18 March 2004

Falkland Islands Trading Co., Ltd.

[Falkland Islands Trading Co., Ltd. houseflag] by Phil Nelson, 11 April 2000

from Stewart and Styring's Flags, Funnels and Hull Colors 1963. This company is based in London.

Federal Steam Navigation Co. Ltd

[Federal Steam Navigation Co. Ltd houseflag] by Ivan Sache, 17 March 2004

The flag is white with a red cross and a blue rectangle superimposed on the cross.

FOCS Container Service, Ltd.

[FOCS Container Service Ltd houseflag] by Ivan Sache, 17 March 2004

This is a UK firm nominally, but active in Canary Islands shipping (  The flag is quartered blue and white, letters FO in the top quarters, CS in the lower ones (white letters on blue, blue on white).

Some information (extracted from the site):

"In September 2000 Oldenburg-Portugiesische Dampfschiffs-Rhederei GmbH & Co.KG (OPDR) of Hamburg acquired 100% of the shares of FOCS Canary Container Service, S.L., Tenerife from Fred. Olsen and Co, Oslo. The company subsequently switched its registration and headquarters to the United Kingdom and 'FOCS Container Service Ltd.' was formed in April 2003. The company maintained key personnel and the full agency network of the Fred. Olsen service, providing unrivalled experience and knowledge of the Canary Island market. FOCS offers a weekly fixed day service from the UK and the North Continent to/from the Canary Islands utilising OPDR vessels under a slot charter agreement. More recently the company has started to extend its service to adjacent areas."

Jan Mertens, 18 December 2003

Furness Lines

[Furness Lines houseflag] by Ivan Sache, 17 March 2004

The flag is blue with a white F.

Larousse Commercial Illustré (1930) shows Furness Withy & Co.Ld., London: blue with large white letter F (no serifs) in the centre, the height of which is about two thirds of the flag.
Jan Mertens
, 16 May 2004

Furness Houlder Argentine Lines

Larousse Commercial Illustré (1930) shows Furness Houlder Argentine Lines, London: two pennants above each other, the upper one blue with white letter F in the hoist, the lower one red with a white Maltese cross in the hoist.

A predecessor: red flag with white Maltese cross in on-line 1912 Lloyd's Flags & Funnels, No. 757 for `Houlder Bros. & Co., Ltd., London':


Jan Mertens, 16 May 2004

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