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Maintaining Food Supplies

PEARS, Charles (1873 - 1958)

Maintaining Food Supplies - Charles Pears
Maintaining Food Supplies - Charles Pears
Maintaining Food Supplies

Date: 1917

Media: lithograph on paper

Acquired: 1919; Presented by Ministry of Information

Accession Number: NWM A 13212

Collection: The Great War: Britain's Efforts and Ideals

This image shows the arrival of the ‘grain ship’.  The ship has been hit by a mine, and is awash forward, but has reached port. Most imported foodstuffs arrived in major English ports but were shipped onwards around the counrty, including to Welsh ports, albeit using smaller ships then depicted here. 

The merchant navy undertook vital tasks during the war, supporting naval ships, transporting troops and carrying essential supplies.  It was dangerous work and the fleet suffered great losses.  Pears’ images capture the ships in great detail. 

Pears was born in Pontefract, Yorkshire and, although he worked as a successful illustrator and lithographer, is best known for his marine paintings. During the First World War Pears was a commissioned officer in the Royal Marines, and worked as an official naval artist from 1914-1918, and again in 1940. Throughout his career he was also a popular poster designer, creating works for organisations including the London Underground.

This work forms part of the portfolio The Great War: Britain's Efforts and Ideals, a series of 66 lithographic prints commissioned by the Ministry of Information in 1917. The series provide a broad and fascinating representation of Britain’s war objectives, military activities and effort on the Home Front.

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