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Great Eastern, the. This vessel, in her day, was remarkable as being the The Great Eastern. largest steamship ever built. She was 692 feet in length, and 83 feet in breadth. 28 feet in draught, and of 24,000 tons measurement. At 30 feet draught she displaced 27,000 tons—an enormous total for an unarmored merchant vessel. As early as 1853, this vessel was projected for the East India trade around the Cape of Good Hope. There were then no accessible coal-mines in South Africa, and the Eastern Steam Navigation Company wanted a vessel that could carry its own fuel to India and return, besides, a large number of passengers and a great cargo. The vessel was designed by I. K. Brunel, and was built at the ship-yards of Messrs. Scott, Russell & Co., Millwall, near London. The operation of launching her lasted from Nov. 3, 1857, to Jan. 31, 1858. A new company had to be formed to fit her for sea, as the capital first subscribed for her had all been spent. She was fitted up to