A lot of these plaques came about from my recent deluge in all things Golden Age of Sail. The Endeavour is another of these, being one of the most famous British ships in history, and a ship famous for exploration and discovery at that. She was one of the names originally put forward for the first twelve Constitutions, and in a preliminary draft script for the TOS episode 'Amok Time' was one of the ships going to be at Altair-IV with the Enterprise.
I originally had a different quote for her motto, possibly from James Cook himself (I cannot remember), but after a request by Guest Author Larry Stovall it was changed. Larry asked me to put together a plaque for his friend JOLLYROGER, who is also an author of no mean talent, and whose stories centre first on a Constitution-class, then Excelsior-class Endeavour.
JOLLY has this motto for his own ship, based on a quote from one of the crew of His Majesty's Bark Endeavour, who, upon hearing that the ship was to return home after reaching the lowest southern latitude of any ship yet, ran to one side of the ship, suspended himself from the edge and reached out as far as he could. "None farther!" he called, meaning that no one had been further south than him. It was such an excellent tale that I immediately adopted it as my Endeavour's motto, even though JOLLY's plaques don't appear here.
Here we have the original Starship Endeavour NCC-1716, built (according to my own registry system) in 2253, one of the second batch (of a final total of four) of Constitution class ships built, and she gets a plaque that is a hybrid of the original Enterprise (no dots between the USS) and the later Defiant (Constitution, not Starship class). My opinion as shown below is that, because the Movie-style (or in fanon, "New Technology') refit of Enterprise was a literal re-building of the ship, all such refitted ships got a "re-commissioning" plaque as well. They were, in effect, almost entirely new ships.
Since 'The Undiscovered Country', a long held fanon Endeavour was offically added to the Starfleet ranks courtesy of Colonel West's 'Operation: Retrieve' chart. However, due to the high registry number, Starbase 23's registry system couldn't have her be a TOS-style Constitution class ship. So, back to the classicbut now non-canon'Star Fleet Technical Manual' by Franz Joseph for that. This Endeavour is from the final of four batches of Constitution class ships, the first in Starfleet to be equipped with a TNG-style "warp core" (since the Scotty's engine room from STVI was a redress of the Enterprise-D). All new-build cruiser-sized starships since 2286 have have a "warp core", and since the Enterprise-A was a newly built ship (though absolutely not a renamed Yorktown!) there had to have been new Constitutions under construction from around 2282-86, as it takes four years to build a heavy cruiser.
Here we have the fourth Starship Endeavour, and she's an Ambassador. I wanted her to be an Ambassador, and I thought that if I made her an Excelsior beforehand, those ships last forever so I wouldn't get the sorely under-represented Ambassador class unless I destroyed Endeavour III, and I've destroyed two Endeavours already. I have since learned this about the lack of Ambassadors on-screen from ACTD - Advanced Starship Design Bureau's Ambassador page:
"The real reason is that a stage hand dropped the original Enterprise-C model and it was never repaired, so it was never made into a CGI model, therefore, its a dead hull."
So, apart from wishing non-maiming harm to that twat of a stagehand, I've decided to beef up the ranks of the Ambassador class. In our Star Trek Universe, the Constitution class begins decommissioning from 2330. So, since the USS Endeavour NCC-1895 is commissioned in 2286, I gave her a long, healthy and active lifespan, and she finally retires in the 2320s. To me there is something special about the 20-or-so names originally considered for the Constitution class, and I thought that having been a member of the flagship class of the Starfleet, she couldn't be a Constellation. In my mind, they are just cruisers, like the Miranda is to the Constitution. Good ships, to be sure, but no ship named Endeavour should be on mere patrol duty. So, the next flagship class after the Excelsior was the Ambassador, and thus we have Endeavour IV.
And below we have the original Star Trek USS Endeavour, now the fifth. Up until 'Star Trek VI' this ship had been only one canon Endeavour, being the Nebula-class ship from Picard's blockade of the Romulan Border during the Klingon Civil War in 2367-68. I have no doubt she is still in service as of 2380.