Dick Hanscom writes:
I want to display a note with a watermark, but I need to do something so that the watermark is visible without a light behind it. In short, the watermark must be permanently visible. I was hoping the readers of The E-Sylum might have an idea. Permanent damage is not a problem.
I have a sheet of banknote paper recovered from the wreck of the Breda.
I am making a display of my shipwreck items, and I want to include this, but without the watermark showing, it is just a piece of paper.
Interesting question. Is there some sort of stain that would make a watermark visible? I would suggest trying a black light, but the question is about how to do this without lighting.
Can anyone help?
On 23rd of December 1940, two German Heinkel bombers attacked a convoy of British ships awaiting in Ardmucknish Bay, Benderloch, near Oban in Scotland. Among the damaged vessels was a Dutch ship, the S.S. Breda. Built in 1921, Breda was 400 feet long and weighed about 7,000 tons. Bound for India to help build an air strip, her manifest included Tiger Moth motorcycles, cement, leather and a Rolls Royce. As they tried to tow her to safety, she listed and sank, with her masts still well above water. For years, divers practiced on her, as she was a well known shipwreck. Later, the masts had to be cut off to alleviate the obstruction to shipping.
The S.S. Breda lay there, dived on, but in many ways undiscovered because of the darkness of the loch. Then the Tralee Bay Diving and Watersports Club made a most amazing discovery. In one of the long hidden cargo holds was found the remains of paper, but not just any paper can survive 50 years under water. This was fine quality paper used for the printing of banknotes! Portals, who was owned by the Bank of England, had manufactured special paper for the printing of Indian banknotes, watermarked with the portrait of King George VI. The wooden boxes had been eaten away and the edges of the uncut sheets were a little ragged, but this treasure was still intact!
This banknote paper is an authentic relic of that shipwreck. It was originally destined to become an India ten rupee banknote. The water mark shows a likeness of King George VI, the denomination and the words, “RESERVE BANK OF INDIA”
To read the complete article, see:
Watermarked Paper Money from British India : SS Breda
Wayne Homren, Editor
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