A half-bottle of sunken Scotch salvaged from the Whisky Galore ship SS Politician has fetched £2,250 at auction in Edinburgh.
The Ballantine’s whisky was one of thousands packed in cases on board the ship when it ran aground in a gale near the island of Eriskay in the Outer Hebrides in 1941.
The story of the islanders who couldn’t believe their luck was immortalised by Compton Mackenzie in his 1947 novel Whisky Galore!
The tale also inspired a 1949 Ealing Comedy, which was recently remade starring Gregor Fisher, James Cosmo and Eddie Izzard.
The item sold at Bonhams’ Whisky Sale in Edinburgh and was salvaged from the wreck of the ship by a diver in 1989.
The wax-sealed bottle – embossed “Made in Scotland, Glasgow, Scotland” – was bought by an anonymous private collector based in Europe.
Martin Green, Bonhams’ whisky specialist, said: “Whisky from the SS Politician rarely comes up for auction – there is always a lot of interest.”
The 8,000-ton SS Politician was bound for Kingston in Jamaica and New Orleans when it foundered near Eriskay.
The crew were rescued unharmed, and much of the whisky was “salvaged” by the island’s thirsty inhabitants.
The ship’s hold was eventually blown up by Customs & Excise officials in 1942. Decades later, a few bottles were salvaged by professional diver Donald MacPhee.