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Earle (Tyne)

Hull, UK

Earle's Shipbuilding was an engineering company that was based in Hull, East Riding of Yorkshire, England from 1845 to 1932.

The company was started in Hull in 1845by two brothers, Charles and William Earle. The firm was made up of engineers and focussed on shipbuilding and repair. Its most notable association was with the Wilson Line, for whom the yard produced many ships. Earle's also built vessels for many other British shipping firms, especially those operating on North Sea routes such as the Great Eastern Railway and the Hull & Netherlands Steamship Co. Ltd.

In 1871, Earle's was restructured as a joint-stock company and for a short time Sir Edward James Reed served as its chairman and managing director.

Earle's built two steam yachts for Tsarevitch Alexander: the Slavanka in 1873 and Czarevna in 1874. Also in 1874 Earle's built the unsuccessful SS Bessemer, Sir Henry Bessemer's experimental swinging-cabin paddle steamer, which made its maiden (and only) public voyage in 1875. Earle's built the yacht Bosphorous for Khedive Isma'il of Egypt and later built other yachts for wealthy clients.

Earle's was an early adopter of triple-expansion engines, for example installing them in the liner SS Draco that the company built for Wilson Line in 1882.

Reed had been chief constructor to the Admiralty and helped Earle's to win a number of naval orders including the ironclad warships Almirante Cochrane (1874) and Blanco Encalada (1875) for the Chilean Navy Later naval orders included two Edgar class cruisers for the Royal Navy: HMS Endymion launched in 1891 and HMS St George launched in 1892. In 1895 the company built two Salmon-class destroyers for the RN.


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