52 years later, the MoD sells its last dark rum flagons to Royal Navy personnel

52 years later, the MoD sells its last dark rum flagons to Royal Navy personnel

After 50 years, three flagons of rum provided by the Ministry of Defense (MoD) to Royal Navy sailors are for sale.

Because of safety concerns, the centuries-old practice of providing sailors a daily ration of rum to prevent scurvy and enhance morale was discontinued in 1970.

The present owner purchased the three flagons straight from the Ministry of Defense in 1970.

Each 4.5-litre flagon of dark rum is stated to be “excellent” and is believed to be from the last batch produced.

After 50 years, the Ministry of Defense is selling the final three flagons of rum provided to Royal Navy sailors, with each 4.5-litre flagon of black rum fetching up to £2,500.

In the 1940s, British sailors onboard the HMS Curacoa are depicted in line to receive their daily rum ration while at sea.

It is impossible to determine the age of the rum, but it may have been aged in enormous barrels for decades.

They are currently being offered separately at Dreweats Auctions in Newbury, Berkshire, with an anticipated selling price of up to £2,500 each piece.

Mark Robertson, the auctioneer, stated, “We are honored to offer these rare flagons for sale in December.”

Multiple sources have informed us that the rum within is superb and has a style that is impossible to reproduce.

Prior to the 20th century, not much is known about the origin of rum, but by the 1930s, the majority of rum was produced in British Guyana and Trinidad.

In 1655, the Royal Navy’s West Indies Squadron, located in Jamaica, initiated the tradition of distributing rum to sailors.

The three flagons of dark rum, which are expected to sell for up to £2,500 each, have been described as “wonderful and impossible to imitate”

1956 photograph of Royal Navy sailors aboard the HMS Torquay receiving their regular rum ration.

In the Caribbean, rum was abundant and, unlike beer, it was stable in the sweltering heat.

Mr. Robertson continued, ‘For five centuries, British seamen have convened from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. for ‘Up Spirits,’ where they were served their allotted ‘tot’ of rum.

The ‘tot’ was an eighth of a pint and contained more than 50% alcohol by volume.

While normal sailors were authorized to mix their rum with lime juice and hot water, officials were permitted to consume it straight.

When the practice was discontinued in 1970, many sailors mourned the loss of a beloved shipmate by donning black armbands.

The day it ended is now celebrated annually as “Black Tot Day” in recognition of the cherished tradition.

The flagons will be available for purchase on December 8.

 

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