SS Jeddah

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SS Jeddah
Owner: Singapore Steamship Company
Port of registry:  UK
Identification: Official number 67,990
General characteristics
Type: Steamship
Tonnage: 993 44/101 tons register

SS Jeddah was a Singaporean-owned steamship. On 17 July 1880 Jeddah left Singapore bound for Penang and Jeddah with 778 men, 147 women and 67 children on board. The passengers were Muslims traveling to Mecca and Medina for the Hajj. Due to bad weather conditions in the first week of passage, the ship's boilers drifted from their seatings and the ship was taking in water. The captain and officers abandoned the listing ship. They were picked up by another vessel and taken to Aden where they told a story of violent passengers. The pilgrims were left to their fate.

The Jeddah was reported as sunk near Yemen with a great loss of life among the passengers. However, to much astonishment, on 8 August a French steamship towed Jeddah into Aden. All pilgrims had survived. The incident inspired Joseph Conrad who had landed in Singapore in 1883 to write the novel Lord Jim, using the name SS Patna for his fictional pilgrim ship.

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