SS Taishan (watercolour)

Tue, 05/12/2015 - 18:34

Here is a watercolour of the SS Taishan, which was commanded by my paternal grandfather Thomas Pritchard at the outbreak of the war in Hong Kong. The painting is by DA Thorp and dated 1993.

The painting was commissioned by my late father, Thomas Emlyn Pritchard. He had, actually, another painting made of the Taishan a few years previously, but for some reason wasn;t happy with it, so had another done!

The picture was based on photographs of the Taishan, collected by my dad from various sources over the years. 

I sold the picture when my father died in 1997, and was amazed to find it for sale on ebay a few days ago - asking price £450.

Date picture taken
12 May 2015



You mention that your grandfather, Thomas Pritchard, was in command of Tai Shan at the outbreak of war on December 1941.

I don't doubt that you are correct but in Sir Robert Thompson's book "Make for the Hills" he describes arriving on the Tai Shan on 8 Dec and going up to the bridge as they entered the harbour and that Captain Muir  (I assume Donald Muir) was in command.

Perhaps Muir was the duty officer or could there be two captains  - taking shifts?

Just wanted to reconcile this.  Thanks,  Philip Cracknell




Hi Philip - as far as I remember, I got the information from my grandfather's memoirs (written whilst in Stanley POW camp) . These are on this site somewhere. I'll have a look sometime soon and see what he says. Thanks for the note. Huw