Silver & enamel vesta case with shipping signal flags marked for Birmingham 1932 by J W Benson Ltd.
The back with a presentation inscription:
HIGLEY HALLIDAY M.I.N.A
Motor Boat “Iris”
SOUTHAMPTON To LONDON
Oct 25/26 1905
Edmund Walter Higley Halliday (1875-1962) M.I.N.A (Member of the Institute of Naval Architects) was a pioneer of motor boat development from the early 1900’s. He was to become a highly regarded naval architect and marine engineer. He gained widespread recognition in October 1905 after accepting a wager to attempt a record breaking single-handed, non-stop run from Southampton to London. The boat was the ‘Iris’, an open 30 ft. launch which he had designed and built. He completed the run in 27 ½ hours and this success was widely reported in the press. Based in Southampton, in early 1905, he entered into partnership with Geale Dickson. Although this partnership with Geale Dickson dissolved in 1906, with both designers going on to pursue individual careers, Dickson remained in Southampton and continued to design motor launches until the late 1920’s trading as Geale Dickson and Co. We presume he is the G.D. that presented this vesta case to Halliday.