Menu

Guide to the Doris Thompson journal and log book of voyage aboard the S.S. Tetela, 1935 Mar. 25-Jun. 5

Abstract

"Stewardess" aboard the ship; resident of Grimsby[?], England

Collection comprises a manuscript journal and log book (59 pgs+ blanks) authored by Thompson while on a voyage between England and Jamaica from March 25 to April 28, 1935. However, the journal actually closes with a description of her train trip home on April 29. Includes Thompson's 33 black-and-white photographs, 2 telegrams she received from a Captain Greenhill, her certificate of discharge, and an Irish sweepstakes ticket for the Derby syndicate (dated June 5) that she purchased during the voyage. In addition, Thompson copied into the journal a 3-pg informational article on bananas, written by H.C. Bower, and kept a record of the ship's log for the trip. The S.S. Tetela was a cargo and occasional passenger ship that belonged to the banana-importing firm Elders & Fyffes, a wholly owned subsidiary of the United Fruit Company.

Descriptive Summary

Repository
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University
Creator
Thompson, Doris F., b. 1910.
Title
Doris Thompson journal and log book of voyage aboard the S.S. Tetela, 1935 Mar. 25-Jun. 5
Language of Materials
English
Extent
1 v.
Location
For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.

Collection Overview

Collection comprises a manuscript journal and log book (59 pgs+ blanks) authored by Thompson while on a voyage between England and Jamaica from March 25 to April 28, 1935. However, the journal actually closes with a description of her train trip home on April 29. Includes Thompson's 33 black-and-white photographs, 2 telegrams she received from a Captain Greenhill, her certificate of discharge, and an Irish sweepstakes ticket for the Derby syndicate (dated June 5) that she purchased during the voyage. In addition, Thompson copied into the journal a 3-pg informational article on bananas, written by H.C. Bower, and kept a record of the ship's log for the trip. The S.S. Tetela was a cargo and occasional passenger ship that belonged to the banana-importing firm Elders & Fyffes, a wholly owned subsidiary of the United Fruit Company.

All the entries in the piece indicate that Thompson was an experienced sailor and had navigational training, "Started work this morning. The ship's Log Book had been filled up last trip, and they couldn't get a new one at Rotterdam, so the entries for the last few days had been made on odd sheets of paper. I re-wrote these on official paper and.... Continued making all entries during the trip (pgs. 1-2)." The Tetela sailed from Southampton and arrived at Port Antonio, Jamaica, a fortnight later. Over the next week, the ship took on a large cargo of bananas at Montego Bay, Bowden, and Kingston, where five passengers joined the ship for the homeward voyage. The ship birthed at Garston Docks, Liverpool, two weeks later. In the journal, Thompson does not record what duties she carried out as stewardess. Instead, she recorded weather, passing ships, as well as sea life, but mainly focused on describing, with an active sense of humor, staff activities, meals, gossip, recreation, and teasing aboard ship. She also detailed a day trip she took to Port Antonio, the loading of bananas as cargo, as well as her contacts with officials of the United Fruit Company and family members of the ship's staff. The photographs document much of her description, but include several images of Thompson taken by the Tetela's captain.

Administrative Information

A majority of collections are stored off site and must be requested at least 48 business hours in advance for retrieval. Contact Rubenstein Library staff before visiting. Read More »

warning Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection.

All or portions of this collection may be housed off-site in Duke University's Library Service Center. The library may require up to 48 hours to retrieve these materials for research use.

Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library to use this collection.

warning Use Restrictions

The copyright interests in this collection have not been transferred to Duke University. For more information, consult the copyright section of the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Contents of the Collection

Historical Note

Doris Thompson was a "stewardess" aboard the ship and resident of Grimsby[?], England

Subject Headings

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], in the Doris Thompson journal and log book of voyage aboard the S.S. Tetela, 1935 Mar. 25-Jun. 5, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Provenance

Purchase, 2008

Processing Information

Processed by: Alice Poffinberger, September 2010

Encoded by: Noah Huffman, September 2010

Accession(s) described in this finding aid: 2008-0284

Descriptive sources and standards used to create this inventory: DACS, EAD, NCEAD guidelines, and local Style Guide.

This finding aid is NCEAD compliant.