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Baggage Contract and Receipt, Cunard Line SS Aurania, 1904

An example of very rare documentation given to passengers for luggage checked with the steamship lines in the early twentieth century. A remarkable piece of information that helps complete the story of a transatlantic voyage.

Images of Bagage Contract and Receipt from 1904
Baggage Contract, Cunard Line, 1904 Receipt for Baggage loaded on to SS Aurania of Cunard Line 1904
Baggage Contract - Aurania - 1904 Receipt - Baggage - Aurania 1904



Liverpool Aug 9 1904

E. L. Parsons (Elizabeth L. Parsons), Passenger per Aurania


Description of Luggage
70.8. 2615. Description Amount
Packages Baggage Carriage paid Railway or Forwarding Coy... £
Cartage, Porterage, and Shipping Expenses
Packages Expenses in France  

Cartage and Porterage to and from Customs Transit Depot

Customs Charges at Transit Depot


Customs Entry Dock Dues Opening Clearing Customs  
Packages Baggage—Expenses in France  
Bundle Wraps
2 Valises
Cartage and Porterage
3 --

* This Baggage having arrived by the connecting Havre Steamer is not subject to any Liverpool charges.

For conditions of Shipment see back.

No payment can be recognized unless acknowledged on a printed check receipt,


Back Side (Conditions)


Neither the CUNARD STEAM SHIP COMPANY LIMITED, nor any of its Agents are to be responsible for any damage, delay, or loss arising directly or indirectly, and whether at sea or on shore, at any time or in any place.

  1. From the Act of God, the King's Enemies, Robbery, Theft of whatever kind, Storm, Riot, Flood, Restraint of Princes or Rulers, Civil Arrest or Attachment, Leakage, Breakage, Damage from Stowage, or contact with or near other Goods, Accidents from Machinery, Boilers, Steam, or any other Misfortunes, whether caused by the negligence, default or error in judgment of the Master, Pilot, Engineers, Stevedores, or other Servants of the Company, whether on hoard the Steamship conveying the Baggage, or any other Steamship, or of any other Persons, whether at sea or on shore, for whose Acts or Defaults the Company would but for this provision be responsible.
  2. Nor for any indirect or consequential damages, or for loss of Market in consequence of Baggage being lost, injured or delayed, or of its not being properly packed and protected by packing, or by reason of delay or misdelivery owing to insufficient address being given, or for want of explicit instructions as to shipment or despatch, or for loss or injury by fire, unless the Company has been instructed in writing to insure against the same, and has undertaken to do so.
  3. Nor under any circumstances for Glass, China, Sculpture, Paintings or similar Articles, nor for Specie, Jewels, Plate, or any other Property of the descriptions enumerated in Section 502 of the Merchant Shipping Act, 1894, or Section 4281 of the revised Statutes of the United States, unless the nature and value thereof be declared and rent as may be agreed on paid, nor for any damage caused to any piece of Baggage or its contents by reason of the excessive weight or character thereof, nor in any case or under any circumstances for any loss, damage, delay. or injury occurring when the Baggage is not in the actual custody of the Cunard Steam Ship Company.
  4. Baggage sent forward unaccompanied by its Owner will be carried at his risk subject to all general or special conditions of carriage required by the respective Carriers thereof, and to all laws and regulations of the Countries through which they may be conveyed, and the Cunard Company shall be under no liability or risk in respect thereof.
  5. The Owners or persons depositing Baggage containing articles of an explosive or otherwise dangerous nature, or which may be injurious to any other goods, will be held responsible for all loss or injury thereby caused.
  6. Weight, contents and value are unknown, and the Company is not answerable for same.
  7. In case of any loss, damage, or injury, for which the Company or its Agents may be responsible, then, unless higher values be declared, and ad valorem rent to be agreed on be paid, its liability is hereby limited to a sum not exceeding £6 for each Trunk or large Package, £2 for each Hand Bag, Valise or Portmanteau, and £1 for each Hat Box, including the respective contents thereof.

The Owner of the Baggage in accepting this Receipt agrees to its conditions.

Description of Documents

1) Receipt

  • Description: Passenger receipt for payment for luggage - Aurania
  • Date of Issue: 15 August 1904. The Aurania left Liverpool on 9 August and arrived in New York on 18 August 1904. The passenger receipt was dated 15 August 1904 - so payment was made during the voyage.
  • Dimensions: 12.2 x 6.2 cm
  • Notes: Back side is blank

2) Baggage Contract

  • Description: Contract for Luggage checked with the Cunard Steamship Company for a voyage from Liverpool to New York.
  • Date of Contract: 9 August 1904
  • Dimensions: 20.6 x 26.1 cm
  • Notes: Address written in pencil on face of luggage contract indicates an address of 61 E. 65th Street, New York City. Other documents with this group indicated an address for Elizabeth L. Parsons of 11 Rue Scribe , Paris, France.
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