Sunday, 20 May 2012
Lowry refers 9 times to a ship called Martensen in his novel Ultramarine. The ship is Norwegian out of Oslo. The only ship with a name that is near to the Martensen on the Norwegian records is the D/S Marstenen. Given Lowry's prolific mis-spelling of names then the ship he refers to in the novel is more than likely the Marstenen.
Built in Fredrikstad, Norway in 1915. Tonnage: 1832 gt, 1114 net, 3050 tdwt. 8/1915: A/S D/S Marstenen (Vilh.Torkildsen) Bergen; 2/1938: Skibs A/S Vilhelm Torkildsens Rederi(Vilh.Torkildsen) Bergen Launched as Viv. Manager: Vilhelm Torkildsen, Bergen. Sank 1940 - See her fate on War Sailors.
"The last ship on the wharf was the Martensen, from Oslo. But the Martensen was as silent as a graveyard on a dead planet. (Pg. 84); "There's a Norwegian ship in dock, Norman," I said. "Let's go there. What ship?" "T.S. Martensen" (Pgs. 97-98); "On - on to the Martensen" (Pg.100); "the S.S. Leeway from Swansea had docked forward of the Martensen." (Pg. 101); "Come on, let's all go to the Martensen." But the Martensen still seemed deserted." (Pg. 102); The Martensen was following close to stern." (Pg. 155); The Martensen changed he course eastward, their firemen were now dumping ashes overside." (Pg. 155).