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Helgoland Gun Turret Inkwell, 1922
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Helgoland Gun Turret Inkwell, 1922

Measurements: Length: 18cm (7.5in)

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A brass inkwell in the form of a rotating twin 12-inch gun turret made by Thomas Ward (Engineering Division) of Sheffield as a promotional item from metal recovered from the scrapped Imperial German navy dreadnought. The Helgoland inkwell was the first produced by the ship breakers Thomas Ward. Its successors, made to the exact same pattern, were cast from metal taken from the British capital ships, Revenge, Tiger and Rodney.

Helgoland was the lead ship of her class - a dreadnought of the Imperial German Navy. She was launched on 25 September 1909 and at the start of the First World War was assigned to the Kaiserliche Marine’s I Battle Squadron. She fought at the Battle of Jutland in 1916, firing sixty-three 12-inch rounds, while sustaining only one 15-inch hit.  At the end of the war her crew mutinied at Wilhelmshaven prior to an intended final fleet action. The red flag was raised at her masthead and her war-weary sailors joined the general insurrection at Kiel. Following the scuttling of the interned High Seas Fleet at Scapa Flow, all four Helgoland class battleships were surrendered to the Allies as prizes of war under the Versaillles Treaty with Helgoland going to the United Kingdom. She was scrapped at Morecombe in 1921.
 

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