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Paddle Steamers at Istanbul, Turkey : Sirket-i Hayriye
The Sirket-i Hayriye shipping company was established in 1850 and granted the concession to link Istanbul with communities on the Asian shore of the Bosphoros. Traditionally, the company purchased its vessels from British yards. The exceptions during the paddle steamer era were six vessels built at the company's own yard at Haskoy. The company was nationalised in 1944 and became part of the new Turkish Maritime Lines and Sehir Hatlari (City Lines).

Particularly notable amongst the vessels below are the Suhulet and Sahilbent, double-ended ferries, built in 1870 and 1871,  pre-dating the similarly-designed vessels which have now come to dominate short crossings by over 50 years. These vessels were designed to carry cargo barrows, carriages and livestock on the "roll-on roll-off" principle, and found particular use by the army in wartime for the carraige of troops and ordnance.
Latterly they were motorised and rebuilt to provide more open deck space. Both vessels remained in service for almost 100 years.



Above : Suhulet (also known as Bosporus No 26 from 1944-1952) : a revolutionary design promoted by Huseyin Haki Efendi, General Manager of Sirket-i-Hayriye - and a 90-year life (1861-1961) was testament to this success. 
150 ft long : 555 GRT built by Maudslay, Sons & Field of London UK. Engine - 43 in x 48 in (compounded in 1926 then replaced by an oil engine by MAN of Nurnberg in 1930)
Sister ship Sahilbent had two engines when built for extra power.  




Above : Suhulet rebuilt after motorisation in 1930


Other paddle steamers found their way to serve at Istanbul second hand from western Europe for a variety of operators. These are not listed here.

NUMBER

NAME

BUILT

BUILDERS

AT

LENGTH

SERVED UNTIL

1

Rumeli

1853

John Robert White

East Cowes, England

46.4

1864

2

Taraba

1853

John Robert White

East Cowes, England

46.4

1864

3

Goksu

1853

John Robert White

East Cowes, England

46.4

1864

4

Beylerbeyi

1853

John Robert White

East Cowes, England

46.4

1864

5

Tophane

1853

John Robert White

East Cowes, England

46.4

1864

6

Besiktas

1853

John Robert White

East Cowes, England

46.4

1864

7

Istinye

1857

John Robert White

East Cowes, England

41.1

1864

8

Bebek

1857

John Robert White

East Cowes, England

41.1

9

Kandilli

1857

John Robert White

East Cowes, England

41.1

1864

10

Beykoz

1857

John Robert White

East Cowes, England

41.1

11

Anadolu

1857

John Robert White

East Cowes, England

41.1

1865

12

Kabatas

1860

John White

West Cowes, England

42

1875

13

Galata

1860

John White

West Cowes, England

42.6

1902

14

Buyukdere

1860

John White

West Cowes, England

42.6

1899

15

Beyazit

1863

M Wigram

London, England

1898

16

Buyukada

1863

M Wigram

London, England

1898

17

Bahariye

1865

M Wigram

London, England

1905

18

Asayis

1865

M Wigram

London, England

1919

19

Seyyar

1869

M Wigram

London, England

1913

20

Terakki

1869

M Wigram

London, England

1919

21

Surat

1869

M Wigram

London, England

1919

22

Tayyar

1869

M Wigram

London, England

1903

23

Azimet

1870

Maudslay Sons + Field

London, England

31.7

1915

24

Rahat

1870

Maudslay Sons + Field

London, England

31.7

1911

25

Selamet

1870

Maudslay Sons + Field

London, England

31.7

1915

26

Suhulet

1871

Maudslay Sons + Field

London, England

45.5

1958. Scrap 1961

27

Sahilbent

1872

Maudslay Sons + Field

London, England

45.5

1959. Sold 67

28

Meymenet

1872

Sirket-i Hayriye

Haskoy, Turkey

1905

29

Nuzhet

1872

Sirket-i Hayriye

Haskoy, Turkey

1905

30

Refet

1872

Sirket-i Hayriye

Haskoy, Turkey

1905

31

Amed

1872

Sirket-i Hayriye

Haskoy, Turkey

1905

32

Meserret

1872

R + H Green

London, England

48.7

33

Nusret

1874

R + H Green

London, England

48.7

1916

34

Gayret

1872

R + H Green

London, England

48.7

1915

35

Isguzar

1881

Sirket-i Hariye

Haskoy, Turkey

1930

36

Mirgun

1881

Sirket-i Hariye

Haskoy, Turkey

1910

37

Ihsan

1890

R + H Green

London, England

50.2

1916

38

Sukran

1890

R + H Green

London, England

50.2

1915

39

Neveser

1890

J W Thames

London, England

52.4

1917

40

Reheber

1890

J W Thames

London, England

52.4

1915

41

Metanet

1893

Napier, Shanks + Bell

Glasgow, Scotland

1916

42

Resanet

1892

Napier, Shanks + Bell

Glasgow, Scotland

1916

43

Ikdam

1894

R + H Green

London, England

50.2

44

Intizam

1894

R + H Green

London, England

50.3

1916

45

Resan

1895

R + H Green

London, England

50.3

1916

46

Ruchan

1895

R + H Green

London, England

50.3

1916

49

Hale

1904

Fairfield

Glasgow, Scotland

30.6

1916

50

Seyyale

1903

Fairfield

Glasgow, Scotland

30.6

1924


Bibliography:

Sirket-i Hayriye
By Eser Tutel
Published by : Iletisim Yayincilik in 1994
ISBN 975-470-420-1
History of the Sirket-i Hariya ferry company, forerunner of today's state-owned concern, and its ships (in Turkish language)


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Historical Database