This fine shipyard model of the steam schooner ‘Helen’ has two masts, a funnel and a finely detailed superstructure with silvered metal fittings, the hull painted pink with black topsides, with a plaque stating “Built: Thomas B Seath & Co Glasgow. Length: 162′ Beam: 28’6″ Draft: 11’5″ . All set within a glass case on a tall stand. Scottish, 1872.
The Helen was built in Glasgow in 1872 during the halcyon days of private steam yachting for the 2nd Marquess Conyngham, vice commodore of the Royal Yacht Squadron from 1862-1875. Another of his yachts, the Minerva is featured on page 44. He was educated at Eton and was returned to parliament in 1818 for Westbury and later Donegal. He served under Lord Liverpool as Under Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs and later under Canning and the Duke of Wellington as Lord of the Treasury, entering the Lords after succeeding his father. His positions in government included Postmaster General, Grand Knight of the Hanoverian Order and Knight of St Michael.
As well as his political career he held senior military rank becoming major general in 1858, Lieutenant General in 1866 and full General in 1874.
As a courtier he was Page of Honour to The Prince Regent and later Groom of the Bedchamber and Master of the Robes when the Prince became King George IV. Upon the death of William IV in 1837 he went to Kensington Palace to inform Princess Victoria that she was now monarch and was the first to address her as ‘Your Majesty.