BAME Seafarers in the First World War

Event date Event time Event location
24/01/2018 11:00 am - 4:00 pm The University Library, University of Portsmouth, Room 0.37, Portsmouth, PO1 2ST

BAME seafarers appear to have been employed in large numbers in the mercantile marine, including in coastwise shipping around the UK as well as in oceanic trades. Thousands of BAME seafarers were exposed to the dangers of merchant seafaring in the First World War, including being sunk by enemy mines and torpedoes. Hundreds died and have no grave but the sea. Equally, BAME seafarers also served in Royal Navy vessels around the UK. The contribution of those BAME seafarers who died, and the many more who survived, is almost invisible in accounts of the First World War at sea. Those who died are usually commemorated far from where they served, on memorials in Mumbai and Hong Kong. Some attention has been given to the post-war ‘race riots’ in port towns in the UK, but the role, contribution and experience of BAME individuals and communities in seafaring itself seems to have been ignored.

This workshop will help identify steps that can be taken to enable greater engagement in the history of BAME seafarers in WWI. The workshop is intended to engage participants from academia, the heritage sector, community projects and individual researchers. It is hoped that the workshop will give rise to or encourage the development of specific proposals for research and/or heritage projects, including community-based projects under the HLF First World War: then and now programme.

View the programme and book your place here.

If you have any questions relating to the event please contact Dr Melanie Bassett at melanie.bassett@port.ac.uk

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