THE SUNDERLAND SITE - PAGE 059
SHIPBUILDERS - PAGE 17

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On this page ... Green & Richardson, Greenhill's, R. Greenwell, T. R. Greenwell, T. W. Greenwell, Greenwell & Sacker, Gulston, J. Hall, G. W & W. J. Hall, Hardcastle John, Hardcastle P., Hardie, Harkass, Haswell, Helmsley or Hemsley, Henderson, Hepton, Hetherington W., Hodgson, Benjamin, Hodgson & Gardner, Hutchinson, Kirkbride, Carruthers, page bottom (Mount Vesuvius).

Copyright? (2 + 1 + 2 + 1 + 1 + 3 + 1 + 5 + 3 + 5 + 4 + 1 + 1 + 4 + 9 = 43) Test.

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GREEN and RICHARDSON of South Hylton

1   Sally Gale
153 tons

26870
1859

A snow or brig. The vessel, which was launched on Apl. 16, 1859, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1859/60 thru 1870/71. It was owned, thru such entire period, per LR, by 'Brooks & Co.' of Newcastle, with 'Thompsn', presumably Thompson, her captain thru 1860/61, W. Armstrong so serving from 1861/62 thru 1867/68 & J. Downie from 1867/68 to 1870/71. For initial service ex Sunderland, from Newcastle to the Mediterranean thereafter thru 1866/67, & from Newcastle to France from 1867/68 thru 1870/71. Such LR data may prove to be modestly incorrect. The Mercantile Navy List ('MNL') advises that in 1865 the 154 ton vessel was owned by James Finlay of St. John's Woods, (London, I believe). From 1866 thru 1871 (1870), MNL lists John Crosse Brooks, of Wallsend, Newcastle, as the vessel's owner.
84.0 ft. long, signal letters PMWG. Crew lists are available here.
LR of 1870/71 notes that the vessel had been 'SUNK". Thanks to the folks at Google Books, we can tell you what happened to her. This report (ex here) advises that on Dec. 21 & 22, 1870, Sally Gale was in the River Seine, near Rouen, France, taking on ballast. With G. Bishop her then master. Having previously unloaded its cargo of coal at Rouen. When it & five other British vessels were seized & scuttled by Prussian military forces. During the course of the then France/Prussia War. I read further that i) the vessel had left port (likely Newcastle) on Nov. 26, 1870 for Rouen, ii) John S. (Stephen) Bishop was the vessel's captain, George Simpson her mate & that the crew was 6 in number all told, & iii) the vessel was then valued at £2,800. But the value per the Government Valuers was £765 only. It is interesting to note that all six of the vessels so scuttled had been Sunderland built. Can you add to or correct this listing? #2312

2

  Harriet Dobing
221 or 222 tons

27885
1860

A brig, which was launched in Dec. 1860 & first registered, at Hartlepool, on Dec. 19, 1860 (scroll to #27885). The vessel is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1861/62 thru 1872/73, owned, thru 1865/66 by Dobing & Co. of, certainly registered at Hartlepool. For service from Sunderland to London & later ex Hartlepool. I read that on Feb. 11, 1864, the vessel left Cardiff, Wales, for St. Thomas (Virgin Islands, Caribbean) almost certainly with a cargo of coal. The Mercantile Navy List ('MNL') of 1865, however, lists John Appleby, jun. of Wingate, Durham, as the owner of the 222 ton vessel. From 1865/66 thru 1872/73, per LR, the vessel was owned by Scrafton & Co. of Middlesbrough for service ex Hartlepool but from 1868/69 for service from Gloucester to the West Indies. MNL of 1867 lists, however, Matthew Scrafton of Middlesbro' as the then owner of the Boston registered vessel. MNLs of 1868 thru 1870 all list Elizabeth Sizer, of Boston, Lincolnshire, as her then owner. 90.0 ft. long, signal letters PTDW.
LR of 1872/73 notes that the vessel had been 'Wrecked'. On Nov. 9, 1872, per line 2678 here, the 221 ton brig stranded at Marstrand (N. of Gothenburg, Sweden), while en route from Cronstadt (St. Petersburg, Russia), to London. No cargo is stated. Crew of 8 - none lost. Then stated to be owned by Elizabet Sizer. This (in red) contemporary newspaper article tells us that the vessel, with a cargo of wheat & Ingster her captain, had been driven ashore during a gale, further that the crew were able to safely reach shore in the ship's boat. Off Kegrksund, Sweden. A couple of crew lists are available here. Can you add to or otherwise correct the above text? #2117

GREENHILL'S SHIP REPAIRERS

I probably should not include this entity at all in these pages since it was, I understand, a ship repairing yard and not a ship building yard. Located right beside Roker North Pier.

GREENWELL R.

A shipbuilder that so far as the webmaster can see, built just a single vessel - Achsah, built in 1846, now listed below.

1   Achsah
253 tons
1846

Achsah? A female biblical name.
A snow. Achsah is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1846/47 thru 1852/53 only, always listed as an 1845 built vessel - which the webmaster believes is in error. It was owned for such entire period, per LR, by J. Clay of Sunderland, for service from Sunderland to the Mediterranean. With, per LR, J. Morrell the vessel's captain thru 1850/51 & 'Mitchell' her captain thereafter. The North of England Maritime Directory of 1848/9, in Apl. 1848 data, records John Clay of Sunderland as the vessel's owner.
The webmaster has not researched Achsah's operational history, but provides the following 'best-efforts' data 'snippets'. The vessel would seem to have had a number of captains. Initially 'Holland'. Then 'Morrell', certainly from Sep. 1846 thru late 1849. 'Mitchell' from Mar. thru Aug. 1851, 'Peverly' (maybe Peverley) from Apl. 1852 thru May 1853, 'Stewart' from Oct. 1853. Data in time sequence by captain. Holland. i) On Feb. 25, 1846, Achsah left Sunderland for Charente (France). Morrell. ii) On Sep. 12, 1846, the vessel arrived at Gravesend, London, ex Pugwash (Nova Scotia, Canada). It went on to Marseilles, France, & to Limerick, Ireland, whence it departed on May 12, 1847 for Quebec, Canada (arr. Jun. 22, 1847). On Sep. 14, 1847 the vessel arrived at Cork, Ireland, with a cargo of wheat, stated to be ex Montreal, Canada. iii) In Nov. 1847, a 16 year old crew member fell to the deck from the vessel's rigging & died. iv) On Mar. 31, 1848 the vessel left Newcastle for Cadiz, Spain, & went on to Newfoundland, likely en route to Quebec, Canada. v) On Apl. 02, 1849 the vessel arrived at Killybegs (W. of Donegal), Ireland, from Sunderland, having lost its anchor & chain. On Jun. 04, 1849, Achsah left Donegal, Ireland, for Philadelphia, U.S.A.. It grounded as it left Donegal, came off with the tide likely without damage, & arrived at Philadelphia on Aug. 30, 1849. On Aug. 10, 1850 the vessel was back at Hull ex Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada. Mitchell. vi) The vessel left Shields on Mar. 06, 1851 for Cadiz & Quebec & on Sep. 03, 1851 arrived back at Hull ex Saint John. Peverly. vii) On Apl. 02, 1852, the vessel left Sunderland for Quebec. It arrived back at Sunderland ex Quebec, in Aug 1852, with a cargo of timber. viii) A voyage to Cronstadt (near St. Petersburg, Russia) followed by ix) a voyage to Bordeaux, France. Stewart. x) On Oct. 17, 1853 the vessel arrived at Shields ex Archangel, Russia. On Nov. 21, 1853, the vessel, arrived at Gravesend, London, with a cargo of coal. The webmaster does not recall seeing any Achsah voyages into the Mediterranean. 
On Dec. 19, 1853, a massive gale from the SE hit many parts of the U.K. - particularly hard hit was the Hartlepool area. Truly the destruction was amazing, but do not take my word for it - just read this summation of the events just at Hartlepool.
Achsah, Stewart in command, was in the wrong place when it all occurred. The vessel, which incidentally was noted to have been a Hartlepool registered vessel, was en route, in ballast, from London to Hartlepool, & was one of the many vessels that were hit by the storm. You could describe the scene at Hartlepool as a 'traffic jam'. Per this article, no less than 64 vessels arrived at Hartlepool & they all wanted to enter the port of Hartlepool to gain protection from the storm. The harbour access became blocked & five of the late arrivals ran or were driven into one another. Seven vessels (incl. 2 foreign), including Achsah, ended up stranded on the beach a little to the S. of Hartlepool, opposite the windmill, I read in Achsah's case.
It would seem that Achsah was beyond repair, though I note that Lloyd's Register, in a report from Hartlepool on Jan. 28, 1854 reported that Achsah & 4 other U.K. vessels, had been got off & taken into Hartlepool.
Can you add to or correct the above text? #2726

GREENWELL T. R.

A shipbuilder of Ayre's Quay, Sunderland, I read. A list of Sunderland built vessels, available to the webmaster, lists 21 ships that he built between the years of 1814 & 1825.

1   Eclipse
190, later 189, later 189/181, 189/194 & 164/182 (N/G) tons

8740
1814

A brig or snow. This vessel is listed having been advised by Ian Whittaker (thanks!) that Eclipse, built at Ayre's Quay in 1814, was registered at Ayr, Scotland, in 1815 & re-registered there in 1827. Such data conflicts with the available Lloyd's Register ('LR') data, however. No problem. Read on.
The vessel, which was launched in Mar. 1814, would seem to have been LR listed from 1814 thru 1852/53 (ex editions from 1830 thru 1833 & 1850/51). But now see below re later LR listings. LRs of 1814 & 1815 list Eclipse, stated to be of 190 tons & equipped with 3 guns, as owned by 'Greenwell', presumably its builder, for service from London to Gibraltar. And captained by Wm. Frost. Most likely then registered at Sunderland. In 1816, & thereafter thru 1822, the vessel was LR stated to be owned by Brown & Co. with J. Moore serving as the vessel's captain. For service i) from Greenock (River Clyde, W. of Glasgow, Scotland), to Quebec, Canada, in 1818 & 1819, ii) from Belfast, Ireland, to 'StAnd' (likely Saint Andrews, New Brunswick, Canada) in 1820 & 1821 & iii) from Dublin, Ireland, to Quebec in 1822.
From 1823 thru 1829, Eclipse, per LR, was both owned & captained by J. Moore for continued service from Dublin to Quebec.
When LR coverage resumed in 1834, the vessel is listed at 189 tons & noted to have been built at Durham in 1814. Owned from 1834 thru 1840/41 by Wise & Co. of Air soon Ayr, for service to what I believe meant Chaleur Bay (a noted Saint Lawrence River, Canada, bay) from Glasgow in 1834 & 1835/36 & from the Clyde from 1837/38. With 'Galloway' serving briefly as the vessel's captain in 1834 & then J. Gray thru 1840/41. I note that LR records Eclipse as Durham built thru 1849/50. Only in 1851/52 & 1852/53 does LR state that the vessel had been built at Sunderland.
In 1840/41, per LR, 'Cochrane' became the vessel's owner - thru 1852/53. Of 189/181 tons soon 189/194 tons, registered at Irvine (River Clyde, North Ayrshire, Scotland) thru 1845/46, then at Ardrossan, Ayrshire, & in 1851/52 registered at Dundee, Scotland. For service as a coaster or collier at Dublin, at Newport, Wales, & at the Clyde. A Dublin collier in 1851/52. With Blacker (thru 1842/43) or Blackley (from 1843/44 thru 1846/47), serving as the vessel's captain, then H. Torrance (various spellings) from 1846/47 thru 1852/53.
What finally happened to Eclipse? I note that LR of 1852/53 named her then owner (Cochrane) but provided little additional detail. Perhaps an indication that the vessel might have been lost in some way. Or that she had been sold.
Having advanced the research into the documentary record of Eclipse, as recorded above, I happened to find at the Mercantile Navy List ('MNL'), an 1880 listing re a brig of the name, stated to have been built at Ayres Quay in 1814, of 164 tons & then owned by Geo. Goodfellow of Dublin. ON 8740. Stated to have been registered at Irvine in 1844.
I find that Eclipse was further LR listed from 1874/75 thru 1887/88, always registered at Irvine, of 164/182 (N/G) tons, & owned in 1874/75 & 1875/76, by A. Finney, & from 1876/77 thru 1887/88, by G. Goodfellow. LR stated no captain names during such period. MNL comes to our rescue with greater detail. It tells us i) that the vessel was registered at Irvine from 1858 thru 1877, ii) that the 182 ton vessel was owned from 1865 thru 1868 by 'Ths. De Faye, sen.', of St. Helier, Jersey, iii) that from 1869 thru 1871 (1870) it was owned by Archibald Finnie of Kilmarnock, Ayrshire, Scotland, iv) that from 1872 thru 1875 the 164 ton (from 1870 per MNL) vessel was owned by Archibald Finney (i.e. different spelling) of Kilmarnock, & v) that from 1876 thru 1887 (1880) the vessel was owned by Geo. Goodfellow, of Dublin. LRs of 1886/87 & 1887/88 both tell us that Eclipse was 'Broken up'.
79.2 ft. long, signal letters KDLQ. Some crew lists are available here.
'Greenwell' must have built a sturdy ship, indeed, back in 1814, sturdy enough to have survived for an amazing 73 years.
Is there anything you can add? And/or correct? #2454

2   Acasta
143 tons
1818

A brig. Acasta is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1818 thru 1832/33. It was initially owned thru 1820, by 'Greenwell', i.e. by its builder, for service ex London.
In 1820/21, & thru 1827/28, the vessel was owned, per LR, by T. Sampson, with 'Young' or D. Young her captain thru about 1821, 'Cuthbertson' from 1820/21 thru 1824, J. Clark from 1824 thru 1826, 'Gentill' from 1826 thru 1827/28, 'Malloy' in 1826/27 & 1827/28 & H. Dale in 1827/28. The vessel may well have sailed from London to Cape of Good Hope, South Africa. From 1820/21 thru 1824 the vessel is LR recorded re voyages from London to Pernambuco, Brazil; in 1825 & 1826 from London to 'CCost' (wherever that is?); in 1826/27 from London to Bahia, Brazil; & in 1827/28 from London to Aberdeen.
In 1828/29, per LR, Acasta became owned by J. Thompson for consistent service from London to the Humber. With H. Dale continuing, per LR, to have served as the vessel's captain.
On Feb. 12, 1829, per this page (search for 'Acasta') - 'Acasta, of Whitby, from Sunderland, got on shore on Filey-Main early this morning, but is likely to be got off, by discharging part of her cargo'. As was published, I note, in the 'Times' of London, on Dec. 15, 1829.
Now this listing was first created by the webmaster having seen this Acasta entry in a 1908 Whitby, Yorkshire, shipping history book. Alas the data there provided seems not to agree with the LR data as recorded above. It tells us that Acasta was first registered at Whitby in 1829, owned by J. Storer. Further that the vessel was lost on May 24, 1830. I note in passing, that in the experience of the webmaster, such history book has proved itself to be most accurate.
The webmaster has not, so far at least, spotted any references to such an 1830 loss. There was however a vessel named Acasta which foundered on Oct. 4, 1831. Such vessel, en route from Archangel, Russia, to Plymouth, with 'Tait' her captain, was found water-logged & abandoned on Oct. 5, 1831 off Uist Island, Shetland, & was boarded on Oct. 7, 1831 by Fidelity. Her crew were saved, I read, but I cannot tell you how they were saved. But that vessel was not 'our' Acasta, rather a 238 ton brig of the name, built at Whitby in 1824 & noted to be 7 years old in LR of 1830/31.
Need help! Is there anything you can add? Or correct? #2566

GREENWELL & SACKER

of Monkwearmouth

The webmaster has no knowledge whatsoever about this modest shipbuilder, other than the fact that he is credited with building 5 vessels during the period from 1839 thru 1841. Need help!

1   Pilot
224/220 later 202 tons

5084
1850

A snow or brig. Pilot was Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1840/41 thru 1850/51 & not thereafter (I checked thru 1870/71). But the vessel clearly did survive thru 1870.
The vessel was initially owned by J. Parkin of Stockton, thru 1847/48 & of Hartlepool thereafter, for service from Sunderland to London in the first period & from Hartlepool to London in the second. With, per LR, 'Goldsack' the vessel's captain thru 1847/48 & 'McCrthey' presumably 'McCarthy' from 1848/49 thru 1850/51.
The vessel certainly did not only sail from NE ports to London. While the webmaster has not tried to research the vessel's operating history, Pilot certainly went to Archangel, Russia, with Goldsack in command. It arrived back at Hartlepool on Oct. 19, 1841, & at Gravesend, London, on Oct. 25, 1844, both from Archangel. And traded with both Memel (then E. Prussia, now Klaipėda, Lithuania) & Hamburg, Germany. Later, with 'McCarthy' in command, the vessel sailed to Riga, Latvia, with voyages also to Hamburg.
On Dec. 25, 1846, an auction notice was printed in the 'Newcastle Courant', offering three vessels, all owned by Joseph Parkin it would appear, for sale, including Pilot (in red). The auctioneer was Hartlepool based - it is likely therefore that the public auction was also in Hartlepool. It would seem that Pilot did not sell.
In the North of England Maritime Directory of 1848/49, Pilot is registered at Hartlepool & J. Parkin, her owner, is listed as being from Hartlepool. For service from Hartlepool to London. Turnbull's Shipping Register of both 1855 & 1856 also list J. Parkin & Co. as the owner of the Hartlepool registered vessel, with W. McCarthy noted to be her captain.
Christie's Shipping Register of 1858 lists Pilot as still Hartlepool registered & then owned by John Kell. While the Mercantile Navy Lists ('MNL') record the vessel as Hartlepool registered from 1857 thru 1862, & registered at West Hartlepool, from 1865 thru 1870. MNL's of 1865 thru 1870 all list John Kell of Seaton Carew, Durham, as the owner of the 202 ton vessel.
Signal letters JGDV. Crew lists from & after 1863 are available via here.
On Feb. 8, 1870, per line 716 here, the 202 ton brig was stranded near West Hartlepool while en route from London to West Hartlepool, in ballast. Crew of 8 - none lost. Then owned by John Kell. Wikipedia tells us (thanks!) that the loss was rather on Feb. 7, 1870 & that the vessel's 8 man crew were rescued by the West Hartlepool lifeboat. 'The Daily News', of London, made no reference to the lifeboat rescue. It simply stated, in a report from Hartlepool dated Feb. 8, 1870 - 'The Pilot, brig, drove behind the piers at West Hartlepool, and broke up'. It woud seem that the weather must have been bad at the time. Certainly gale force conditions existed at nearby Sunderland on Feb. 7/8, 1870 with high winds, heavy rain & strong seas reported.
Can you tell us more? Or correct the above in any way? #2630

T. W. GREENWELL & CO., LTD.
GREENWELL'S DRY DOCK CO.

(OF SOUTH DOCK)

First a few images. Hover your mouse over each thumbnail to read the subject matter.

Another name that I probably should not include in these pages (or maybe should include in a separate ship repair section) since it was a ship repairing yard & not a ship building yard. I am not absolutely sure if the second name I list above is a good correct name. But it surely is OK because 'Tyne and Wear Archives' used to have a WWW page that referenced the name.

'Where Ships are Born', devotes a little over three pages to the yard & from that source I have summarised much of the data which follows. And that volume is the source of the image of the yard that follows below.

The firm, the largest of the Sunderland ship repairers was, I read, founded in 1901 by Thomas William Greenwell (1867-1948), most often referred to as 'T. W. Greenwell'. It initially used two public dry-docks leased from the City, but it extended its premises in 1922 & built its own 500 ft. long, 75 ft. wide, dry dock ('with 26 ft. on cill at H.W.O.S.T.') which enabled vessels to be docked at low water. And, at right angles to the dry-dock, a 600 ft. ship repairing quay with 22 ft. of draught at low water. All with necessary cranes (40 ton, electric, travelling) & other facilities. The new dry dock was opened in 1925.

I note that 'The Engineer' of Jul. 31, 1925 (eBay) features an extensive article about that new dock.

A 1937 Sunderland Industrial Handbook, from which part of the above is derived, described Greenwell's as having modern and highly-efficient ship-repairing facilities (which include Electric Arc Welding Plants). Able to deal with the largest types of repair jobs & specially equipped for dealing with repairs to oil tankers, oil storage tanks having been installed for storing fuel oil from vessels undertaking repairs.

In 1939 the firm took over, on a long term lease, the River Wear Commissioners No. 1 public dry dock. That dock, it would seem, was later badly damaged in an air raid in May 1943 & had to be reconstructed, the new facility opening in 1952. There were other major improvements effected also, including extension of the repairing quay to 800 ft. in length. S.S. British Realm, of approx. 28,598 tons deadweight, was the first vessel in new No. 1 dry dock which was officially opened in October 1952. A Mar. 9, 1950 London Times article about that dry dock is here.

Next a fine image that was originally provided, in 2014, by the old 'Sunderland Tugs and Shipbuilding in pictures' whom we thank. Its caption states that it shows work in progress extending one of Greenwell's drydocks in 1949. Both No 1 and No 2 drydocks were lengthened at this time. I think I am correct in saying that what happened is as follows. Commencing in mid 1950, Greenwell's i) built a new dock 650 ft. long, then the second largest dock between Rosyth and the Thames,  which became known as Drydock No. 1. They also ii) extended an existing dock to 565 ft. - it became known as Drydock No. 2. and iii) extended the existing ship repairing quay from 600 ft. to 810 ft. I cannot tell you which particular drydock is featured in the below image however. Click on the image to see it in a larger size.

A most able firm, it would seem. I quote 'Greenwells proved their worth by carrying out a wide range of conversions, and undertaking repairs to destroyers, corvettes, naval escort vessels, tank landing ships and craft, beach protection craft, boom defence vessels, salvage and dredging craft, floating cranes, merchant ships, and the fixing and overhauling of guns and other defence equipment on board merchant ships'.

For most of the company's life, Thomas William Greenwell was involved with the company & was indeed its chairman from 1901-1919 & from 1932 until presumably the day of his death at age 81 in 1948. It is appropriate that his image should grace this page & an image of him (at left) is contained in 'Where Ships Are Born'.

Colonel T. G. (Thomas George) Greenwell (1894-1967), T. W. Greenwell's son, was, at the time of his election (1 & 2) as Member of Parliament for The Hartlepools, the managing director of the yard (to retirement in 1960). His image is at right.

The volume mentions some specific assignments Greenwells accomplished with notable success.

The salvage of Destroyers H.M.S. Ashanti and H.M.S. Fame, the reconstruction of the steamer Stakesby which was sunk & refloated 18 months later, the conversion of Alexia, an oil tanker, into a merchant aircraft carrier, the conversion of a 10,000 ton cargo ship into a floating shipyard (Mullion Cove). For the interesting stories of all of those assignments, I refer you to the volume itself (here & following).

I am not clear as to what happened afterwards since the book was republished now almost 60 years ago (1953), though the book advised that after WW2 the yard specialised in the reconstruction of large oil tankers & remained equipped to tackle any & all assignments. Can anybody tell us what later happened to the company & the status of the facilities today? Part of the answer to that question was contained in a page in a booklet published at or around 1965 by 'The Doxford & Sunderland Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. Ltd.'. Which booklet lists the companies then in the group. 'T. W. Greenwell & Co. Ltd.' was included in the list. I have no date as to when they had acquired it.

Bill Greenwell, of Exeter, U.K., advises that there were three 'Greenwells' during the yard's history - Thomas William (1867-1948), who founded it & whose image is above, Thomas George, his son, (1894-1967), & Thomas Anthony Greenwell (1922-1987), all of whom were known by their second names & all of whom were, in their time, Chairmen & Managing Directors of the yard. Thomas Anthony Greenwell was, in fact, Bill's father. 'Anthony' accepted a senior position at The Doxford & Sunderland Shipbuilding & Engineering Co. Ltd. in 1967 & was its managing director from 1970 through 1973. That company, Bill tells me, was taken over by Court Line in 1972, but soon crashed - & was taken into public ownership. He believes the 'end' came in 1982. Bill indicates that one of his WWW family history pages contains history related to the Greenwell yard & invites visitors to read chapters 4 & 5, on this site. We thank you, Bill!

I have read, in a now long gone Sunderland Echo article that the main 2 Greenwell dry docks were in fact later filled in with dolomite! I wonder when that was? The 3rd dry dock (see next paragraph) still exists & is used, but not as a going concern, by the river authorities. For a while, after the demise of the shipbuilding industry, it was I am advised operated as 'Wear Dockyard' by Albert le Blonde.

Adams Beck, a collier, in a 'Greenwell' dry dock. Image kindly provided by Don Simpson.

The undated image that follows shows the 'Greenwell' facilities in 1953 or perhaps a bit earlier. The biggest of the dry docks is the one at the top of the image so I presume that is No. 1 dry dock which opened in 1952. Dimensions? In 1956, the Port of Sunderland advised that there were 2 dry docks there. No. 1 Dry Dock, 675 ft. long & 87 ft. 6 in wide with 27 ft. 4 in. of water at the cill at MHWS (the highest level to which spring tides reach on the average). No. 2 Dry dock was 565 ft. long & 75 ft. wide, also with 27 ft. 4 in. of water at the cill at MHWS. But there was also a third dry dock, 357 ft. 6 in. long with 17 ft. 10 in. of water at the cill at MHWS. Owned by River Wear Commissioners but operated by 'Greenwell'. At South Dock but really at the entrance to South Dock. That 3rd dry dock was accessed from 'Half Tide Basin' and the entrance to it & the stern of a ship within it is just visible in the image below directly under 'WWW' in the text.

Sunderland Dry Docks in general? 1956 data is here.

Where is or was the yard? The following image will help with its location. At top left is the south harbour arm, the locks at top right lead from 'Half Tide Basin' into Hudson Dock. River Wear is at the bottom & lower right.

A splendid history. Virtually no references to it on the WWW that the webmaster could find. The words above probably do it poor justice, alas.

G. S. GULSTON

OF CASTLETOWN YARD, SOUTHWICK

Really just a name today. 'Gulston' was, it would seem, a small shipbuilder that was in business only from 1874 to 1876. In that short period, he is said to have built 6 ships. Including Nautilus, as per this page (thanks John D. Stevenson). The yard, located on the north bank of River Wear west of where the Queen Alexandra bridge was later built, would appear to have been taken over, in 1882, by John Priestman who left Pickersgill's that year to commence his own shipbuilding business there.

That John Priestman took over the site previously occupied by G. S. Gulston is confirmed in 'Reflections of Southwick', a text written in or around 1893 by Luke Crown. On p.18 of the 'pdf' is a reference to the Gulston yard which indicates that Gulston had several failures in his ship launches - as described in the following interesting words. '...Gulston whom I had almost forgot built where Mr. Priestman now is had several failures in launching owing to the non declivity of the ways. The vessels did not stand high enough on the stocks to give them sufficient velocity so that they would run afloat.' A problem not by any means unique to Gulston! Before the river was dredged, I do believe.

Miramar list? (top 4 on this page). In addition to Nautilus, Belle of Benin & Lady Eleanor (1 & 2) in 1875 & Sea Mew in 1876. John Oliver advises that the firm also built a steam ferry - data unknown including its tonnage, in 1875.

J. HALL

So far as the webmaster can see, J. Hall built 51 vessels at Sunderland over the years from 1801 thru 1831.

1   Albion
93, later 100/122 tons
1820

A brig, later a schooner. Albion, which was launched in May 1820, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed in a 'special' 1820/21 edition of LR, then, in fact from 1820, an LR silence of many years, & again from 1835/36 thru 1844/45 & not thereafter. The 1820/21 entry records the vessel as owned by Hall & Co., i.e. by its builder, with C. Tate her captain, for service as a Sunderland coaster.
LR of 1835/36 is cryptic. But it does record the 93 ton brig as registered at Sunderland with 'Wilkinson' her then captain. And no other data whatsoever. Fortunately LRs of 1836/37 thru 1838/39 provide more info. - they record 'Blackburn' as the vessel's owner, of Sunderland in 1836/37 becoming Whitby, Yorkshire, in that year, for service as a London coaster. With 'Wilkinson' her captain in 1836/37 & M. Stavely from 1836/37 thru 1838/39.
I should note that this vessel was first site listed as a result of seeing this entry for Albion (the first entry of the name) in a 1908 Whitby shipping history book. Which tells us that the vessel had become Whitby registered in 1834 with Will Blackburn her then owner. Further that in 1804 (means 1840 I think), the vessel had become owned by T. Simpson, a banker, Hen. Simpson a ropemaker, James Walker & James Estill, a master mariner.
I now see that in Apl. 2021, Helen Proudfoot was in touch about this vessel. Alas, I had forgotten that - my apologies, Helen! At that time Helen kindly provided a link to a Whitby 'Lloyd's' survey report re this vessel. Such report is dated Jan. 19, 1839 & is amazingly detailed. It lists Thomas Simpson & others as her then owners, James Eskdale her then captain. A survey commissioned when the vessel was enlarged from 93 to 100/122 tons. Page 'Full details' tells us that the vessel had been almost entirely renewed at the cost of £270. Such survey is available via here - do download a beautiful 'pdf' image of the two pages via the down arrow under the page bottom.
LRs of 1839/40 thru 1844/45, record Albion, now a 122/100 ton schooner, as owned by 'Simpson' of Whitby. For service from Whitby to the Baltic, with J. Eskdale consistently serving as the vessel's captain.
It is abundantly clear that 'Eskdale' was not Albion's captain from 1840, nor was the vessel's actual service from Whitby to the Baltic. The vessel served a number of French ports on the English Channel i.e. Dunkirk, Caen, Le Havre & Rouen, from such U.K. ports as London, Newcastle, Whitby, Stockton, Shields & Sunderland, & once from Swansea, Wales, it would appear. With 'Estill' always reported to have been her captain.
The Whitby history book also tells us that the vessel was lost near the Humber on Oct. 7, 1849. Per this Lloyd's List entry, from Hull on Oct. 8, 1849, Albion, 'Estill' in command, got onto Trinity Sand on the morning of Oct. 7, 1949, filled with water & was abandoned. The crew is stated to have been saved. Trinity Sand is, I learn, a sand flat near Spurn Head at the mouth of the Humber River. Wikipedia confirms the vessel's loss as stated - one of their data sources, from its title at least, suggests that Albion was lost during a violent gale in the area. The loss is briefly referenced on this 1849 U.K. Government wreck list.
Can you add anything additional. Or correct the above in any way? #2574

G. W. & W. J. HALL

Just a name to me today. It would seem that the shipbuilder was simply known as 'Halls'. A build list in the possession of the webmaster lists 89 vessels built by 'Halls' in the period of 1829 thru 1861. Hopefully more of those vessels will soon be recorded below. Just two now.

1

  Ann Carr
197/199 tons

1840

A schooner, later a brig. Ann Carr is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1839/40 thru 1853/54, listed as a schooner thru 1842/43 & thereafter as a brig.
Per LR, the vessel was owned by R. Carr of Sunderland thru 1850/51, with R. Carr her initial captain (thru 1842/43), 'Reed' her captain from 1842/43 thru 1848/49, 'Harrison' from 1848/49 thru 1849/50 & F. Davies from 1850/51. The North of England Maritime Directory of 1848/9, in Apl. 1848 data, lists the Sunderland registered brig's then owners as being R. Carr & R. Carr, respectively of Monkwearmouth, Sunderland, & of Cork, Ireland. For initial service from Sunderland to London, for service from Bristol to Ancona (E. coast of Italy) in 1840/41 & 1841/42, from London to Leghorn (Livorno, Italy) from 1842/43 thru 1847/48, from Waterford, Ireland, to New York, in 1848/49 & 1849/50 & from Cork to Lisbon, Portugal, in 1850/51.
In 1851/52, per LR, Watson & Co. of Dublin, Ireland, became Ann Carr's owner for service from Dublin to Demerera (Guyana, N. coast of South America) - with F. Davies continuing to serve as the vessel's captain. And registered at Dublin.
LR of 1853/54 lists the owner's name with no other detail which suggests that the vessel may have been lost. The vessel was not issued an Official Number so presumably was lost before Jan. 1, 1855.
It would seem that Ann Carr's captain may have been 'Davis' rather than 'Davies'. The following references all refer to 'Davis' rather than 'Davies'. On Dec. 28, 1852, Ann Carr, 'Davis' in command, arrived at Buenos Ayres, Argentina, ex Cadiz, Spain. And on Mar. 14, 1853 left Buenos Ayres for  Ensenada, just a few miles away. In a Jun. 16, 1853 report from Barbados, on the night of May 25, 1853, the vessel stranded at Long Bay, (SE coast of Barbados), & was considered likely to become a wreck. Its cargo was of mules - all safely landed. By Jun. 11, 1853, Ann Carr had been condemned. As per these 'Lloyd's List' reports.
Is there anything you can add? Or correct? #2658

2

  Cornubia
143 later 144 tons

18145
1857

A schooner later a brigantine. Cornubia? The name by which the Romans knew the Cornwall area. Cornubia, the vessel, was registered at Fowey, Cornwall, on Jun. 23, 1857, & was Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1858/59 thru 1881/82.
It was owned, per LR, thru 1864/65 by Martin & Co., of Fowey, with 'Burgham' her initial captain (in 1858/59) & M. Burns her captain from 1859/60 thru 1864/65. For initial service from Sunderland to France (1858/59), service as a Falmouth coaster (1859/60), & service from Newport, Wales, to the Mediterranean thereafter.
In 1864/65, per LR, Beynon & Co., of Newport, became Cornubia's owner thru 1871/72, for service from Newport to Cadiz, Spain (in 1864/65), from Newport to the Mediterranean (in 1865/66 & 1866/67 & in the period of 1868/69 thru 1871/72) & from Swansea, Wales, to the Mediterranean (in 1867/68). It would seem that 'Beynon' became the vessel's owner earlier than LR indicated. The Mercantile Navy Lists ('MNL') of 1865 thru 1869 all list Thos. Beynon of Newport as her owner. And the vessel became Newport registered in 1863. The vessel became listed as a brigantine in LR of 1869/70. Cornubia, per LR, had many captains under 'Beynon' ownership - S. Howe (1864/65 & 1865/66), T. Kendall (1865/66 thru 1867/68), F. Britton briefly, H. Willmott (1868/69 & 1869/70) & H. Jenkins thereafter, though H. Jenkins, per LR at least, continued to serve as captain under later ownership thru 1881/82 - but the data is surely incorrect..
In 1871/72, per LR, A. Pugsley of Newport became the vessel's owner. MNLs, however, record Anthony Pugsley, of Newport, as the vessel's owner from 1870 thru 1872.
LRs of 1873/74 thru 1875/76 record no owner names, however MNLs come to our rescue. MNLs of 1874 thru 1879 all list Michael Driscoll of Courtmacsherry, Co. Cork, Ireland, (30 miles SW of Cork) as Cornubia's then owner. While MNLs of 1880 thru 1882 record Thomas Driscoll (same residence) as her then owner. I note that LRs of 1876/77 thru 1879/80 list M. Driscoll as owner of the Newport registered vessel, now of 144 tons. While LRs of 1879/80 thru 1881/82 list T. rather than M. Driscoll as the vessel's owner. It is clear that 'Driscoll' was also the vessel's captain, certainly in Aug. 1881 when the vessel, en route from Newport to Cork, Ireland, with a cargo of coal, had to put into Milford Haven on Aug. 27, 1881 with damaged rigging.
Some selective, 'best efforts', operational history re Cornubia - mainly thanks to Welsh Newspapers Online. Did not check all of the many references. i) On Nov. 6, 1858, 'Burns' in command, the vessel was loading at Cardiff for Rotterdam. ii) On Dec. 11, 1858, per Wikipedia, a vessel of the name, likely this vessel, ran aground on the Manacles (off the Lizard, Cornwall) while en route from Southampton to Port Talbot, Glamorgan. Was refloated & put into Falmouth in a leaky condition. iii) The vessel ('Burns') was entered out of Cardiff on Sep. 7, 1860 for Barcelona, Spain. Left for Barcelona also on Apl. 18, 1861. iv) On May 24, 1861 the vessel was reported as having carried railway carriages & materials to Tarragona, Spain. v) On Aug. 5, 1862, the vessel was entered out of Cardiff for Civita Vecchia, Italy, with 'Williams' noted to be in command. vi) on May 20, 1864, the vessel carried rails to Naples, Italy. vii) On the night of Oct. 26, 1867, or in the early hours of Oct. 27, 1867, Cornubia, under the command of 'Brittan' collided with a brig of unknown name when off Lundy Island (12 miles N. of the Devon coast in the Bristol Channel). The anchor of the brig penetrated Cornubia's hull & she took on a great deal of water. The captain tried to make Penarth Roads, & then the Mumbles, but had to beach the vessel on the shores of Swansea Bay opposite to the South Docks - at 7:30 a.m. on Oct. 27, 1867, as the vessel was about to sink. The vessel was soon drained & repaired & rapidly returned to service as you can read here. Wikipedia records the event as being on Oct. 29, 1867, based upon a 'Liverpool Mercury' article of Oct. 30, 1867. viii) On the night of Mar. 27, 1869, a vessel of the name, likely this vessel, struck on the bar at Lisbon, Portugal, while en route from Newport to Lisbon. Wikipedia tells us that she was refloated & found to be severely leaky. ix) On Dec. 20, 1869 ('Jenkins') the vessel left Newport for Smyrna, Turkey. x) On Nov. 26, 1870 ('Jenkins') the vessel was entered out of Newport for Genoa, Italy, with a cargo of iron. xi) On Nov. 27, 1871, the vessel ('Jenkins') arrived at Smyrna ex Newport. xii) On Jul. 23, 1873, Cornubia ('Driscoll') arrived at Cardiff ex Limerick with a cargo of oats. xiii) More 'Driscoll' voyages with cargoes of pitwood, limestone, coal etc. xiv) damaged in Aug. 1881 as per link above (Milford Haven).
82.0 ft. long, signal letters MKPQ, many crew lists, thru 1882, are available here.
What finally happened to Cornubia? LR of 1881/82 notes that the vessel had been 'Wrecked'. This page (search for 'Cornubia') tells us that the vessel was sunk with the loss of all hands a 1/4 mile off Roches Point, Cork Harbour, on Oct. 20, 1881 as a result of widespread gales that had impact throughout the British Isles. Further than she was then reported to be owned by Thomas Driscoll, her captain. An extensive paragraph about the vessel's loss, the weather conditions at the time, & 2 contemporary newspaper articles can be read here. The vessel, which had a crew of 5 or 6, was owned by 2 brothers, whose names were O'Driscoll, with Thomas her captain. We thank both sources. We seem to be saying that the owner & captain's name was correctly O'Driscoll? This U.K. Government wreck listing page re 1881 tells us (top item) that at the time of her loss, the vessel was owned by T. & P. Driscoll of Courtmacsherry.
Can you add anything? Or correct the above in any way? #2620

3

  City of London
349 later 350 tons

43979
1861

A barque with iron beams that was launched in Nov. 1961 & first registered, at London, on Dec. 12, 1861 (scroll to #43979). The vessel is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1861/62 thru 1874/75 at least (LR of 1875/76 is not available to the webmaster). Was owned initially by T. Todd, of London, for service from Sunderland to London thru 1863/64 & for service ex London thereafter. The Mercantile Navy Lists ('MNL') of 1867 & 1870 both list Thomas Todd of London as the vessel's then owner. In 1870/71, per LR, the vessel became owned by E. Wardroper, of Huddersfield & registered there, for continued service ex London. (Surely a mistake - the Huddersfield registration I mean. Should be London. LR has the vessel registered at London from 1872/73). E. Wardroper (apparently Eugène Wardroper per MNL of 1871 thru 1874), per LR served as the vessel's captain from part way thru 1872/73 to 1874/75. From 1872/73, LR records service from London to Table Bay, Cape Town, South Africa. 120.0 ft. long, signal letters TRFV.
On Apl. 27, 1874, City of London was abandoned at sea while en route from St. Helena (a remote volcanic island in the South Atlantic) to Falmouth with a cargo of about 500 tons of rice in bags. (St. Helena seems to be an odd place to have loaded such a cargo). The vessel was lost at 39.33N/31.10W, close to the Azores, in the North Atlantic. Or maybe at 40N/31W. Crew of 13 - none lost. Then owned by E. Wardroper of Farnley Tyas, Huddersfield. The vessel was thrown on its beam ends by the force of a gale & her mast (maybe masts?) had to be cut away to right the ship. The vessel was unmanageable - a portion of the cargo was jettisoned. The 350 ton vessel was abandoned, an abandonment that a Court of Inquiry determined to be justifiable. The crew were all saved by Lady Mary & landed at Falmouth. All as per these pages (1 & 2). It would be good, some day, to be able to read the Report of the 1874 Court of Inquiry into her loss. Is there anything you can add? #2152

JOHN HARDCASTLE (1820s)

(OF THORNHILL'S WHARF - SOUTH BANK, NEAR THE MOUTH OF RIVER WEAR)

Just a name today, for which name I am indebted to Stan Mapstone, who advises us: 'In 1827 John Hardcastle was a shipbuilder on Thornhill's Wharf, which was at the bottom of Pottery Bank.'

It would appear that John Hardcastle had a slipway at Thornhill's Wharf, on the south bank of the river and very close to the North Sea, the slipway being known as 'Hardcastle's Slip'. At that very point, a mass of ships blocked the whole river in 1830. A mass of ships? Yes indeed. 65 or 75 of them - all grounded and all damaged to some degree.

I have read that on June 17, 1782, a John Hardcastle married Mary Burrell. And in a link now gone, that John Hardcastle, age 42, a boat builder, became a Freemason in the Sunderland 'Sea Captain's Lodge' on May 20, 1802. Also listed is William Hardcastle, age 27, a boat builder who became a lodge member rather earlier, on Jan. 27, 1791. Related maybe, but presumably not John's son. In 1795/6 John and Thomas Hardcastle were listed (page also long gone) in the 'Universal British Directory' as being boat-builders.

Was most glad to read the above data (and I thank all of those who made it available), which data may relate and indeed does seem to relate to John Hardcastle and his yard. But which, alas, provides little help about the history of the actual ship yard. Can you help in that matter in any way?

P. HARDCASTLE & CO.

(OF PALLION)

Just a name today, a name that came to my attention via eBay, re a postcard of Colombia, a barque built by the shipbuilder as John Paterson in 1877, now listed below. Hopefully there will be, in due course, more vessels built by this builder site listed.

Can you tell us anything about the builder?

1

John Paterson
1315 (or 1332)  tons
Hull 31

68801

Windsbraut
Colombia
1877

A 3-masted iron barque. Per 1 (data re Columbia ex a now dead Norwegian website), 2 (Garb Römer oil painting, Windsbraut), 3 (Colombia overdue in 1906), 4 (Édouard Adam 1885 24x36 in. painting of John Paterson, thanks to MutualArt.com), 5 (Miramar, link, you now must be registered to access). 68.0 metres long perpendicular to perpendicular, 223 ft. 1 in., signal letters QWKD, later NGJD & KBLF. Built for T. Clark, of Irvine, Scotland. The 'T' would seem to mean 'Thomas'. There are references to the owner being, in fact, 'Clarke' but see Lloyd's Registers at left. And see also the Mercantile Navy Lists of 1880 & 1890 which both list the vessel as registered at Irvine & owned by Thomas Clark of Irvine. The vessel made many voyages to Australia. A couple of examples. On Aug. 21, 1882 the vessel left Sydney for San Francisco with 700 tons of coal & 200 tons of ballast. The vessel arrived at Brisbane, in a damaged condition, on Dec. 15, 1883 after encountering terrific weather en route. It left Port Augusta on Mar. 26, 1884 for U.K. with 17,083 bags (70,177 bushels) of wheat. In 1889, the vessel was sold to C. (Carl) H. H. Winters, of Elsfleth, Bremen, Germany, & renamed Windsbraut ('bride of the wind' in English). The vessel traded, it would seem, between Hamburg, Germany, & Australia. A cargo to Melbourne, in May 1890, ex Trove. The vessel was sold again, in 1903, to 'A/S Colombia', of Tvedestrand, Norway, N. A. Lydersen, of Sundet, Akershus, Norway, the manager, & renamed Colombia. In Aug. 1905, the vessel was nearly driven ashore close to Bell's reef (between Kings Island & the coast of Tasmania) but just scraped clear. 'Trove' advises that on Jan. 26 or 27, 1906, (dates differ) the vessel left Wallaroo, South Australia, with a cargo of 16,969 bags of wheat (have also read 1,339 tons), bound for Falmouth. The vessel went missing en route. With a crew of 15 & the Captain's wife aboard also. P. E. Ogvist was the vessel's Captain. We thank Ulrik Cappelen for his kind assistance re the above - Ulrik's great-grandfather was N. A. Lydersen, who owned Colombia from 1903 to 1906. Can you correct and/or add to the above? No.1874

J. HARDIE & M. CLARK (1846 thru 1849)
JAMES HARDIE (1849 thru 1869)

(OF SOUTHWICK)

This section was commenced many months ago, included because in listing a vessel named Ayton built in 1876 by Short Brothers, I found references to an earlier vessel of the same name, built in 1865 by 'Hardie'.

For quite a long time, this section has requested data about James Hardie. Now, thanks to Gill Ford, we can tell you a little more about James & his shipbuilding activities. James Hardie was Gill's great great great grandfather, I learn.

James Hardie was born in Monkwearmouth in 1826, the son of George Hardie who was listed as a shipwright when he married in Sunderland Parish Church in 1825. James later married Mary Ann Bambrough. He would appear to have lived on Glass House Hill, Southwick.

An important source of data about James Hardie is the Corder Manuscripts. They comprise many volumes of hand written data about Sunderland, assembled over a lifetime by James W. (Watson) Corder (1867/1953). The manuscripts are held in the archives of the Sunderland Central Library, maybe at the Local Studies Centre there. Three pages of the manuscripts are devoted to James Hardie & the ships that he built - you can read the three 'Corder' pages in question here - 1, 2 & 3.

Corder advises that one James Carr had a shipbuilding yard at Low Southwick & that his business failed during the slump of 1840. In 1846, James Hardie, then aged 20, & M. (Michael) Clark went into business at the site, under the name of  'J. Hardie & M. Clark'. The partnership did not last very long, about 4 years. As Corder explains it 'Clark left him, probably drinking ... he was a trained man but not steady, went to Briggs who sacked him.' Mrs Clark is stated to have described her husband as being 'a man you couldn't live with'. Hardie continued the shipbuilding business on his own & was in business from 1850 to 1868/69. At some point along the way, the yard moved to Petrie's yard near the bottle works. 'Nearly all his later boats were of good size & highly rated'.

The last vessel that Corder records as being built by Hardie was Dona Feliciana. 'Sea Breezes' Vol. #48 advised that the vessel, which was completed in Apl. 1869, had been ordered by 'a British owner' as Mayqueen but was sold 'when new' to Olaquival and Company, of Bilbao, Spain, & renamed Dona Feliciana. Later, when renamed Dona Telesfora, it was wrecked off Borneo in Mar. 1881.

Hardie apparently tried to 'lease or otherwise' the shipbuilding yard on Aug. 21, 1868. And on May 1, 1869, 'all stock-in-trade and working gear' of the Hardie yard was offered for sale by public auction. It would seem that on Jul. 10, 1869, a 13 years barque ready for launching was for sale upon application to James Hardie. I conclude therefore that Mayqueen/Dona Feliciana was not in fact the very last vessel that Hardie built, rather the one before last.

James Hardie? He apparently left his wife & moved to London with another woman. He set up there as a ship-broker & lodging house keeper. Corder speculates re Hardie 'that iron ship shipbuilding which was coming in in 1869/70 was beyond him and probably drove him with his lady love to London.'

Corder further advises that 'Reflections of Southwick', a text written in or around 1893 by Luke Crown, contains on page #16 a paragraph re 'Hardie', misspelled however as 'Hardy'. Not a particularly complementary paragraph, as you can read for yourself in the text that follows:

'The next site the Hillend where the Mr. Hardy was building was another scanty nook. To look at it the present time you would say it was scarcely large enough to build a dog-kennel in. Jimmy was a ruddy, Bluffy, Rough sort of man, not over refined in his manner, but up to a thing or two. He launched some pretty fair vessels. I remember one that had a nude female for a figure-head. This caused quite a sensation among the Shipwrights, young and old, who took their wander that way at nights to have their pipes and ocularize a little. The exhibiting did not last long. It got to the authorities ears, and I was given to understand that he was compeled to take it off to make way for another with a little more shirt, or I ought to say a shift. He afterwards moved to where Old Petrie was building close to the bottle-works, there building a large number of Ships. Ultimately he went to London and commenced Ship broking and lodging house keeping along with another woman, leaving his own Wife in Southwick. A wife too good for such company as Jimmys was.'

A 'Hardie' build list can now be found on site - on page 144. The list was initially created from the 3 pages of the 'Corder Manuscripts' that relate to James Hardie. But the list has already been modified with data from Lloyd's Registers & from other sources, and will surely be further modified as new data is located.

Gill Ford is still researching the early history of her family, a project started years ago by her aunt. If you can add to the history, do be in touch via the webmaster.

1

  Alma
310/331 tons

11754
1855

A barque. A list of Sunderland built vessels, available to the webmaster, includes two vessels named Alma built in Sunderland in 1855. One of 310 tons built by Js. Hardie & the other of 331 tons built by W. Reed. A 2nd build lists records a 331 ton vessel, launched in Dec. 1854, by W. Reid. Based upon the launch announcement referenced below, it seems that Hardie is likely correct & the 2nd Alma listings are in error. Hence I have recorded it here.
The vessel was launched on Jan. 13 or Jan 18, 1855 with detail as per this launch announcement. There stated to have been bought by Haddock & Co. for the Australian trade. Now the vessel is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1856/57 thru 1869/70, & was initially owned, just in 1856/57 per LR, not by 'Haddock' but rather by H. Reed of Sunderland, for service from Sunderland to the Mediterranean. With J. Booth serving as the vessel's captain. H. Reed may mean Henry Reed. Such owner name (H. Reed) is confirmed by Turnbull's Shipping Register ('TR') of 1855 which references J. A. Booth as her then captain.
From 1857/58 thru 1859/60, LR lists R. West of Newcastle as the owner of the Newcastle registered vessel, for service ex Sunderland. TR of 1856 records R. J. West of Newcastle as her then owner, which owner name is clarified by Christie's Shipping Register of 1858 to mean Robert James West.
J. Booth, per LR, continued to be the vessel's captain thru 1859/60. His full name was, apparently, John Allison Booth, aged 40 in Feb. 1860. I can tell you that having spotted, at the splendid 'Welsh Newspapers on Line' site, a report of the east London Coroner's Inquiry into his death on Feb. 3, 1860. Poor fellow. He had captained Alma on a voyage to India, a voyage 'which turned out to be a failure'. The matter preyed on his mind & he ended up cutting his own throat in his cabin when at the London docks. The Inquiry verdict was 'Temporary Insanity'. 
From 1860/61 thru 1869/70, LR reports Smurthwaite of Sunderland as owner of the Sunderland registered vessel for service ex London. With no captain name LR stated. It is a puzzle while LR continued to list the vessel for so very long. Read on.
108.0 ft. long, signal letters KTWM. The vessel is listed in the Mercantile Navy Lists of 1860 thru 1864 but not that of 1865. Some crew lists are available here.
Wikipedia advises (thanks!) that on Aug. 9, 1864, Alma was abandoned in the Atlantic Ocean 65 miles off Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada, while en route from the Clyde to Montreal, Canada, via Limerick, Ireland. Further that her crew were all rescued. I have read that she carried a general cargo which included pig iron. Can you provide detail as to the circumstances? Or add to or correct the above text in any way? #2354

2

  Melrose
286 or 287 tons

27193
1858

Melrose, which was launched on Jun. 12, 1858, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1859/60 thru 1869/70. Thru 1863/64, LR lists R. & R. Soutter (as I interpret the words), of London, as the vessel's owner, for service from London to Australia. LRs from 1864/65 thru 1869/70 lists no owner name, but the vessel's intended service continues to be from London to Australia. For the entire priod thru 1869/70, J. Huson is LR noted to have been the vessel's captain.
Such LR data should not, alas, be accorded much credibility. Clearly, LR, presumably in the absence of new data, relisted each year what it had listed in the prior year. Fortunately the data at the Mercantile Navy Lists ('MNL') is more credible.
MNL tells us that Melrose, first registered at London on Jan. 21, 1859, was registered there thru 1865 only. In 1865, MNL records 'Lloyd and Cattell', of London, as the vessel's then owner.
MNL records Melrose as registered at Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, from 1866 thru 1878, with a series of Sydney owners. i.e. Lancelot E. Threlkeld in 1866 & 1867, G. E. Austen in 1868 & 1869, William Bell from 1870 thru 1872, & John Geo. Catley from 1874 (no 1873 data is available) thru 1878. The vessel is not MNL listed in 1879.
Thanks to 'Trove, Australia' we can tell you more about the vessel's operational history. i) On Oct. 11, 1860, Melrose arrived at Portland Bay (coast of Victoria, Australia, 360 km. W. of Melbourne) ex London after a voyage of 131 days, John Huson in command, with a varied general cargo. Such voyage was noted to have been the vessel's 2nd voyage - so far I have found no data as to her first voyage, nor any reference to when she later left Australia to return to London. ii) On Sep. 28, 1861, Melrose left Malaga, Spain, for Sydney, 'Huson' in command, with a cargo of wines & sherries. It arrived at Sydney on Jan. 17, 1862 & left Sydney for Shanghai, China, on Mar. 2, 1862, with a cargo of 416 tons of coal. The vessel suffered fore topmast damage soon after leaving Sydney & had to return to effect repairs. On Jun. 10, 1862, Melrose arrived at Shanghai. iii) On Aug. 20, 1864, the vessel left the Downs for Sydney, arriving there on Dec. 14, 1864 with 'Peace' or 'Pence' or 'Pearce' or 'Peuce' in command. iv) On Jan. 23, 1865 the vessel was cleared for departure from Sydney to Bourbon (now the island of Réunion, SW of Mauritius), with 'Bedford' in command. The vessel arrived back at Sydney, with 390 tons of sugar, on July. 1, 1865 (via Melbourne). v) On Aug. 20, 1865 Melrose left for Hong Kong & on Feb. 24, 1866 arrived back at Sydney (& Melbourne then Sydney) with a cargo of tea ex Foo Chow (now Fuzhow, China) which proved difficult to sell. vi) On May 8, 1866 the vessel left Sydney for Foo Chow, arriving back at Adelaide on or about Feb. 27, 1867. At Adelaide, Bedford (John H. Bedford) was fined for assaulting James Thomas, a Melrose seaman. vii) On May 1, 1867 the vessel again left Sydney for Foo Chow with 'Kindred' in command & on its return voyage with a cargo of tea ran out of supplies. For many days the crew subsisted on a biscuit a day. The situation was fortunately resolved by Captain Duguid of Southern Empire. viii) On Nov. 28, 1867 the vessel (Kindred) left for Calcutta (now Kolkata, India) & arrived back at Sydney on Jul. 19, 1868 (left Calcutta Mar. 17, 1868) with a cargo of rice. Whilst on that voyage the vessel was offered for sale at Sydney. ix) Another voyage to Shanghai or Hong Kong (Kindred) arriving back at Sydney on Mar. 20, 1869. x) On Apl. 29, 1869 the vessel was entered out for departure to Aneiteum (Aneityum, Vanuatu) with 'Bell' in command. But on May 12, 1869, having encountered high seas, the vessel had to enter Newcastle, New South Wales, to effect repairs. The vessel had been sold to Captain Bell & Cowlishaw Brothers for £2,200. The vessel continued its voyage & on Oct. 30, 1869 arrived back at Sydney from Foo Chow, 'Bell' in command.
The saga continues at 'Trove'. Perhaps. someday soon, the webmaster will find the time to further research the vessel's voyages. It it most time-consuming. But for today, we fast forward to 1878.
The vessel made a couple of voyages from Sydney to the Soloman Islands in early 1878, stated to be under the command of Captain Kenny. The dates of arrival back at Sydney were Mar. 15, 1878 (delayed by 15 days of gales) & Jun. 12, 1878. Did not spot the nature of her cargoes. On Aug. 3, 1878, the vessel left Newcastle, New South Wales, for Timaru (E. coast of S. Island), New Zealand, with a cargo of coal, generally reported at being 250 tons. A stormy passage I read. The first voyage to Timaru by her captain. Melrose arrived at Timaru on Aug. 21, 1878, anchored off shore & the unloading of her cargo commenced. On Sep. 1, 1878 major winds hit Timaru - higher winds than ever experienced there before, with giant pounding seas. At about 10:30 a.m., Melrose parted her anchors, & drifted ashore, broadside to the beach, breaking to pieces literally within 15 minutes. While drifting, Melrose fouled Palmerston, a ketch. Palmerston's captain ended up drowned but three of her crew jumped into the sea, only two of them making it aboard Melrose. A rocket apparatus tried to assist Melrose & indeed fired lines over her. Her crew did not know what to do with them so the rescue attempt was not successful. Melrose's crew, the Palmerston crew members also no doubt, ended up in the raging seas. Locals risked their lives wading into the sea to save them. One Melrose crew member ended up drowned & Captain Kenny was brought ashore essentially lifeless - badly bruised by the many timbers floating in the boiling seas.
Now the webmaster commenced this listing having spotted this reference (in blue) to an Inquiry at Timaru into the vessel's loss, an Inquiry in which no blame was attached to the ship's officers. In fact there were two inquiries into her loss, the second, delayed to permit Captain Kenney (would seem to correctly be his name) to recover & give evidence, being held because the timbers which came ashore, timbers which likely were from the hull of Melrose, were so badly decayed as to lead to the conclusion that the ship was totally unseaworthy. I note, in that regard, that the vessel is stated to have been Lloyd's surveyed at Sydney some 5 months prior. Thanks to 'Paperspast' of New Zealand, we now provide the extensive text re the inquiry & the court's conclusions. Captain Kenney (George, I believe), was, I read, 60 years old and had been about 46 years at sea.
At the time of her loss, Melrose is stated to have been 50% owned by John George Cantley, one third by Captain Kenney, with the balance owned by Charles McKinnon of Sydney.
103.0 ft. long, signal letters PQGT, no crew lists seem to be U.K. or Canada available re the vessel.
I note with thanks that National Archives of Australia has made available two Sydney ship registry pages re Melrose, both giant in size. Such pages can be accessed here & here.
A fund of info for those who seek detail re the vessel's  Australian ownership history.
Can you add to or correct the above text? #2543

3

  Glee Maiden or Glee-Maiden
141 tons

28500
1860

Glee Maiden? A female minstrel. The brigantine, which was launched on Jun. 27, 1860, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed, as Glee Maiden, from 1861/62 thru 1864/65 only. Per LR always owned by Dickson & Co., of Dumfries, Scotland. With A. Dickson serving as the vessel's captain. I have previously referred, in this space, to W. Dickson of Dumfries, likely Doward, Dickson & Co. - from a source I cannot remember. LR notes that the vessel's consistent service was from the Clyde to the Mediterranean.
It is clear, however, that 'Dickson' was not the vessel's initial owner. It was initially owned by an owner (of name unknown) from Glasgow, Scotland. How do I know that? On Nov. 21, 1860, such owner having died, Glee Maiden was offered for sale at Glasgow (hence my assumption). As per this 'Lloyd's List' advertisement. I presume that 'Dickson' were the purchasers of the vessel, offered for sale as stated. The vessel would seem to have been first registered, at Glasgow, on Aug. 8, 1860 (scroll to #28500).
Now the Mercantile Navy List ('MNL') records Glee-Maiden (with a hyphen) as Glasgow registered in 1861 only, & from 1862 thru 1864 registered at Dumfries. The vessel is not listed in MNL of 1865.
86 ft. 0 in. long (per advert), 92.0 ft. long (per LR). Some crew lists are available via here.
LR of 1864/65 notes that the vessel had been 'Lost'. I learn that on Mar. 19, 1864, Glee Maiden was en route from Savanilla, Columbia (N. coast of South America), to Bremen, Germany, with a cargo of tobacco. Clearly that was not the vessel's first service on that route. It would seem to have so served in 1862 also. Anyway, in this report from Belize (NE coast of Central America), Glee Maiden, a brigantine, struck on a reef in about 15N/78W & became a total wreck. Such location is about 210 miles S. of the S. coast of Jamaica.
In passing, I have spotted references to a vessel also named Glee Maiden which arrived at Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, on May 30, 1866, under the command of Edmund Powell. Ex Liverpool, which it left on Feb. 15, 1866. A voyage of 119 days. That was its second departure from Liverpool. It had left on Jan. 19, 1866 but was damaged soon after leaving port & returned to Liverpool for repairs to be effected. It apparently was in collision with another vessel en route. It came to Melbourne again, arriving on Dec. 1, 1867. Such Glee Maiden was built at Carleton, New Brunswick, Canada, in 1862, was a ship of 1305 tons, & had Official Number #46117. The vessel would seem to have been in service thru about 1880. Hopefully such data will prove to be helpful to others.
Can you add anything? Or correct the above text in any way? #2591

4

  Joseph Cape
220/177 later
179 tons

28176
1860

The vessel, a snow, was launched in Jan. 1860 & first registered, at Liverpool, on Jan. 18, 1860 (scroll to #28176). It is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1860/61 thru 1873/74, owned, for that entire period, per LR, by Hargrove, later Hargrove & Co., of Liverpool. For service initially from Sunderland to the West Indies, from 1865/66 for service from the Clyde to the West Indies & from 1869/70 for service from London to Africa. Became of 179 tons in 1868/69. The Mercantile Navy Lists of 1867 & 1870 both list the 179 ton vessel as owned by John Hargrove of Liverpool. Was registered at Liverpool throughout its lifetime. 87.5 ft. long, from 1868/69 89.0 ft. long, signal letters PVJH.
LR of 1873/74 notes that the vessel had foundered. At an unknown date in Jan. 1873, per this page, the 179 ton snow was lost while en route from Liverpool to Limerick, Ireland, with a cargo of about 250 tons of coal. 'This vessel was found sunk off Barry's Head. Cause unknown.' Barry's Head is at Novahal, County Cork, on the S. coast of Ireland, W. of Cobh (Cork). Crew of 7 - all lost. Then owned by J. Hargrove of Liverpool. Can you add anything? #2122

5

  Raleigh
568 tons

28387
1860

The vessel, a ship later a barque, was launched on May 4, 1860 & was first registered, at London, on May 4, 1860 (scroll to #28387). It is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1860/61 thru 1873/74, owned thru 1864/65 by H. Ellis of London, initially for service from Shields to India & from 1861/62 for service from London to China. I note, however, that the Mercantile Navy List of 1865 lists John and Rob. R. Glover, of London, as the vessel's then owner. In 1864/65, per LR, Ayre & Co. of Sunderland became the vessel's owner, for service from London to the Cape of Good Hope, South Africa, thru 1866/67. In 1867/68, in which year, per LR, the vessel became a barque, Raleigh served from London to Kurrachee (Karachi, Pakistan) & in the following years thru 1871/72 served China out of London. Per LR, during the period of 'Ayre' ownership, the vessel was registered at Sunderland, however the Mercantile Navy Lists of 1866 thru 1870 list the vessel as registered at London & owned by Samuel Ayre of Sunderland, while the 1871 edition rather lists James Ayre. In 1871/72, the vessel became owned by E. T. Gourlay (or Gourley) & Co. of Sunderland, though registered at London, for service ex Sunderland in 1871/72 & ex Bristol thereafter. MNLs of 1872 & 1874 lists Edward Temperley Gourley, of Sunderland, as the vessel's then owner. 142.2 ft. long, signal letters PWGK.
LR of 1873/74 notes that the vessel had been 'Abandoned'. On Feb. 12, 1874, Raleigh was abandoned at sea while en route from Colombo, Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), to London with a 900 ton general cargo. As per this page. Lost at a point about 70 miles W. of the Scilly Islands. Crew of 16 - none lost. Then owned by E. T. Gourley of Sunderland. The vessel encountered a hurricane on Feb. 11, 1874, lost all of her sails & became leaky. The vessel was abandoned on the next day by which time she had 10 ft. of water in her holds. Crew lists are available here. Can you add anything? How the crew were rescued, perhaps? #2133

HARKASS, WILLIAM

OF NORTH SANDS, SUNDERLAND

I know nothing about William Harkass, of North Sands, Sunderland, who would seem to have built 30 vessels in the years from 1847 thru 1856. Can you tell us about the shipbuilder?

1   Ann and Sarah
167 tons
1850

A snow. The vessel is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed in 1851/52 & 1852/53 only, owned by T. Cooper of Sunderland for service from Sunderland to the Mediterranean, with J. Sedcole serving as the vessel's captain. The vessel's life was short.
In the summer of 1852, Ann and Sarah, now under the command of 'Stephenson', was trading into the Baltic. On Jul. 17, 1852, the vessel was at Pillau (now Baltiysk, Kaliningrad Oblast, Russia) ex Swinemunde (today Świnoujście in NW Poland). It arrived at Hull, stated to be ex Riga, Latvia, on Aug. 19, 1852 & on Sep. 9, 1852 left Hull for St. Petersburg, Russia (Cronstadt). On Sep. 21, 1852, as per line 1734 here, the vessel stranded at Oesel (island, now Saaremaa, Estonia, Baltic) while en route from Hull to Cronstadt with a cargo of coal. Crew of 6 - none lost. The loss was reported here. Then owned not by T. Cooper, but rather by Robert Adamson.
Can you add anything additional? Or correct the above? #2429

2   Fanny Huntley
250/249 later 223 tons

14318
1852

A snow or brig. There would seem to have been confusion as to the vessel's exact name - Fanny Huntley or Fanny Huntly (with no 'e'). The webmaster believes that Fanny Huntley is correct.
The vessel, which was launched in Apl. 1852, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed, always as Fanny Huntley, from 1853/54 thru 1860/61 only. It was, per LR, initially owned, thru 1854/55, by Huntley & Co. of Sunderland for service from Sunderland to Archangel, Russia, with T. Taylor her captain.
In 1855/56, per LR, the vessel became owned by 'de Poth'nier' of London, with Smith serving as her captain (J. Smith from 1859/60). For continued service to Archangel thru 1856/57, from Stockton to the Mediterranean in 1857/58 & 1858/59, from Newcastle to the Mediterranean in 1859/60 & ex Sunderland in 1860/61.
The ownership change referred to above must have been earlier than 1855/56. I say that because The North of England Maritime Directory of 1854/55 lists Fanny Huntly, in Mar. 1854, as registered at Sunderland & owned by Alex N. de Pethonier of London, with John H. Smith her then captain. Data essentially confirmed by Turnbull's Shipping Register of 1855.
Some operational history. i) The vessel was first site listed having learned that on Dec. 27, 1856, Fanny Huntley was en route from Hull to Middlesborough (both Yorkshire) in ballast, then to load (likely coal) for delivery to Alexandria, Egypt. The vessel entered Whitby, Yorkshire, struck against the East pier in so doing, & received so much damage that it sank above the bridge. 'Smith' was then in command. As per these contemporary Lloyd's List reports. And these reports also (1 & 2) which add that the vessel had struck on the bar, lost steerage way as a result, & then hit the pier. ii) On Mar. 1, 1857, the brig was, I read, driven on shore W. of Calais, France, while en route from Middlesbrough, Yorkshire, to London with a cargo of iron. The vessel was refloated & resumed her voyage. Star of Shields (built Peterhead in 1834) suffered similarly. The winds must have been overwhelming to drive Fanny Huntley so far off course! The grounding is also advised here. iii) On Apl. 13, 1859, the vessel arrived at Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, ex Newcastle, Smith in command.
LR recorded at 223 tons from 1857/58. Crew lists are available here. I note that the Mercantile Navy List listed the vessel thru 1864.
This page (scroll to #14318) tells us that Fanny Huntly was lost per an advice dated Oct. 12, 1862 (as I read the handwriting). Wikipedia tells us (thanks!) that on Feb. 4, 1863, the brig was abandoned in the Atlantic Ocean, & further that her crew were rescued by Louisa.
Is there anything you can add to the above account? Or correct? #2494

3   Alice
180 later 160 tons

2134
1860

A snow or brig. The vessel, which was launched in Jan. 1850, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1852/53 thru 1869/70. It was initially owned, thru 1855/56 per LR, by 'Huntley' of Sunderland, with 'Mills' her captain. There seems to be some 'confusion' as to the spelling of such owner's name. LR says 'Huntley'. Marwood's North of England Maritime Directory of Mar. 1854 lists Stephen Huntly & Sons, of Sunderland, with Robert Farmer her then captain. While Turnbull's Shipping Register ('TR') of 1855 lists D. Huntley and Jeptha B. Huntley of Sunderland with Wm. Macdonald her captain.
LR of 1856/57 lists Cooper & Co. as the new owner of the Blyth registered vessel with W. Chapell her then captain. Which data is mainly confirmed by TR of 1856 which lists her as then owned by W. & P. Dodds, J. Cooper & W. Chapple, all of Blyth, & J. Hornsby of Seaton Sluice. But ... Sunderland registered. With, presumably, Cooper her managing owner. Christie's Shipping Register of 1858 further clarifies such names - now registered at Shields, it reports her owners as being James Cooper, William & Phillip Dodds, William Chapple, all of Blyth, & Joseph Hornsby of Seaton Sluice.
Now LRs from 1857/58 thru 1869/70 all record Alice as Blyth registered & owned by Cooper & Co., with W. Chapell (from 1861/62 W. Chapel) as the vessel's captain. LR further reports the vessel at 160 tons from 1857/58. It is clear, however, that such LR data is significantly in error. Why do I say that? The Mercantile Navy List ('MNL') advises differently. It reports the vessel as Sunderland registered in 1858, Shields registered from 1859 thru 1863, & thereafter Sunderland registered again. Owned from 1865 thru 1871 (1870) by Thomas Minikin of Sunderland, a name not LR referenced.
80.0 ft. long, signal letters HMVF.
So far as I can see, the vessel is not LR listed from 1870/71, neither is it MNL listed after 1871 But crew lists? A giant surprise there! Crew lists for the vessel are noted as being available thru 1870, as might be expected from the above data but also list crew lists available from 1894 to 1912. Have not yet figured out why.
Now, thanks to the folks at Google Books, we can tell you what happened to Alice. This report (ex here) advises that on Dec. 21 & 22, 1870, Alice was in the River Seine, near Rouen, France, taking on ballast. With W. Embleton her then master. Having previously unloaded its cargo of coal at Rouen. When it & five other British vessels were seized & scuttled by Prussian military forces. During the course of the then France/Prussia War. I read further that i) the vessel had left Sunderland on Nov. 17, 1870 for Rouen, ii) William Embleton was the vessel's captain, William Howe her mate & that the crew was 6 in number all told, & iii) the vessel was then valued at £2,400. But the value per the Government Valuers was £560 only. Readers might be interested to learn that all of such six scuttled vessels had been Sunderland built - I checked. Is there anything you can add to or correct in this modest history? #2311

HASWELL, JOHN

OF SUNDERLAND

I know nothing about 'Haswell' of Sunderland, who would seem to have built almost 50 vessels in the years from 1837 thru 1866. Can you tell us about the shipbuilder?

1

  Weardale
260 later 226 or 227 tons

3786
1850

A snow or brig. Weardale, which was launched in Dec. 1839, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1839/40 thru 1850/51, then a 6 year silence, & again from 1857/58 thru 1870/71.
The vessel was, per LR, owned from 1839/40 thru 1847/48 by Thompson of Sunderland, for consistent service from Sunderland to Holland, with J. Moore, per LR, her captain for that entire period.
In 1848/49,per LR, Weardale became owned by S. Hewson, of North Shields, for service from Newcastle to London. With, per LR, G. Chater now the vessel's captain.
It would seem that on or earlier than Sep. 4, 1856 (in red), Weardale became owned by George Robinson of Blyth, & registered at Shields. So when LR coverage resumed in 1857/58, the vessel was owned by G. Robinson of Blyth, for service from Blyth to i) the Baltic (in 1857/58, 1859/60 & from 1861/62 thru 1870/71), ii) to France (in 1858/59), & iii) to London (in 1860/61). With, again per LR, H. Tweedy her captain in 1857/58, H. Newman from 1858/59 thru 1860/61, & G. Brown from 1861/62 thru 1870/71.
88.0 ft. long, 226 tons from LR of 1859/60, LR noted to have been a schooner from 1847/48 thru 1850/51. Many crew lists are available via this link.
What finally happened to Weardale? LR of 1870/71 notes that the vessel had been 'Abandoned'. I  read that such abandonment was on Mar. 29, 1871, while en route from Blyth to Copenhagen, Denmark, with a cargo of coal & a crew of 8. As per line 1300 in a U.K. Government 1871 wreck list - here.
I read further that the vessel, under the command of Captain Hood, had become leaky. The crew abandoned the vessel at 6 p.m. on Mar. 29, 1871 & a couple of hours later the vessel's lights were no longer visible, the vessel having presumably sunk. The vessel's crew were rescued by Aurora Opeica, a Dutch schooner, which transferred them to Prince of Wales, a British smack, which landed them at Hull on Apl. 2, 1871. At the tiime of its loss, Weardale was owned not by George Robinson but rather by his executors. As per these contemporary news reports (1 & 2).
Can you help with any additional data? Maybe where she was lost? #2684

2

  Amelia Thompson
350/385 tons
1850

A barque. The record for this vessel is confusing indeed. The barque was launched, I read, on Jan. 29, 1851. And is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1850/51 thru 1862/63, always registered, per LR, at Lynn, i.e. King's Lynn, Norfolk. And owned & captained thru such entire period by 'Thomps'n'. For service i) from Sunderland to Lynn in 1849/50 & 1850/51, ii) from Liverpool to California, U.S.A., from 1851/52 thru 1853/54 & iii) for service from London to California from 1854/55 thru 1859/60, the last year for which intended destinations were LR listed.
Amelia Thompson was, in Mar. 1854, per Marwood's North of England Maritime Directory of 1854/55, registered at Sunderland rather than Lynn, owned by Thos. W. Thompson of West Lynn (the part of King's Lynn, located W. of the river Ouse) & captained by Thomas Wm. Thompson. Such data is essentially confirmed by Turnbull's Shipping Register ('TR') of 1855. TR of 1856 advises that T. W. Thompson was her owner but does not list an Official Number for the Sunderland registered vessel. Christie's Shipping Register of 1858 gives similar data & lists Thomas W. Thompson, of West Lynn, as the vessel's owner.
It is clear that much of the above is significantly in error - all of the 'after 1854' data is false. The vessel was never issued an Official Number, which would mean that the vessel was not in existence on Jan. 1, 1855 or in a short period thereafter.
A little operational detail. On May 9, 1851, Amelia Thompson was at Rio de Janeiro. It would seem, if I understand the data correctly, that the vessel was cleared for departure from London for San Francisco, California, on Sep. 19, 1853, encountered difficulties of some sort & put back into Deal, Kent, on Oct. 4, 1853. Later, in Dec. 1853, the vessel, bound for San Francisco (stated to be ex Liverpool), went ashore off Johnson's Harbour, Berkeley Sound, Falklands Islands. It must have got off, because on Dec. 19, 1853 it arrived at Stanley, Falkland Islands, for repairs & was cleared for departure on Apl. 17, 1854. As per this Gov. of Falklands Islands 'pdf' (4th para). On Jun. 2, 1854 the vessel was at Callao, Peru.
The Dec. 1857 edition of 'Noticias del Puerto de Monterey' of Monterey, California (ex here), tells us that on Aug. 26, 1854 the vessel, Thompson her captain, stranded on the Bay of San Simeon (located about 230 miles S. of San Francisco). And became a wreck. Carolina, a steam tug, was sent to recover the cargo & returned to San Francisco with cargo & also 'the anchors, chains, sail rigging, boat davits' etc. of Amelia Thompson.
A significant update to this listing. In Oct. 2021, the webmaster received a kind message from Robert Schwemmer of the U.S. As a result of which I can confirm that vessel was indeed wrecked on Aug. 26, 1854 as is stated above. Further that the wreck was sold by Cobb, Bachus & Co. at a public auction held on Oct. 19, 1854. Where the wreck itself sold for $710, its then remaining cargo for $125 & about 8,000 lbs. of iron for 4 cents per lb. The vessel's captain, Thos. W. Thompson, had clearly been actively selling other items from the wreck for quite a while. Have not spotted where the auction was held. All as per these articles ex the 'Weekly Alta' newspaper of San Francisco.
I wonder how it was that so many records quoted above had it so significantly wrong? Is there anything you can add and/or correct? #2318

3

Sarepta
313/328 tons

16298
1856

The vessel, a barque, was first registered, at Sunderland, on Aug. 30, 1856 (scroll to #16298). It is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1857/58 thru 1883/84 at least. Was owned, initially, by Haswell & Co. of Sunderland - John Haswell & Elizabeth Yearl per Christie's Shipping Register of 1858, with A. Cockerill serving as the vessel's captain. For some varied service - From Sunderland to the Baltic in 1857/58, from Sunderland to S. America thru 1859/60 & from the Clyde to S. America in 1860/61. In 1861/62, per LR, Ayre & Co., also of Sunderland, became the vessel's owners for service from Sunderland to the Mediterranean, with G. Waite serving as her captain. G. Bird, of South Shields, would seem likely to have owned the vessel from 1863/64 thru 1866/67, for service from the Clyde to the Mediterranean with J. Simpson serving as the vessel's captain. Per the Mercantile Navy Lists ('MNL') of 1865 & 1866, George Bird of South Shields. Yet another owner in 1867/68 - J. Coverdale of Hartlepool for service from Hartlepool to Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) thru 1868/69, from Hartlepool to the Mediterranean in 1869/70 & 1870/71, with A. Greig her captain. John Coverdale per MNLs of 1867 thru 1871 (1870 is here). In 1871/72, per LR, G. (George) Dobson of Blyth (later of North Shields), became her new owner for service from Blyth to the Baltic thru 1872/73 when LR ceased to reference intended voyages. Mrs. E. Dobson is recorded as the vessel's owner from LR of 1882/83. Turnbull's Register of 1874 gives share ownership detail - G. Dobson & G. Mitchell, both of North Shields owned 32 & 16 shares respectively while R. S. Harroway of Blyth owned 16 shares. Now MNL of 1872 lists the vessel as Hartlepool registered while MNLs of 1874 thru 1880 list the vessel at North Shields. During the period of 'Dobson' ownership, R. Harroway is LR listed (spelled differently) as the vessel's captain. 108.5 ft. long, signal letters LWTK. Crew lists, thru 1880, are available here. Hopefully additional data will emerge to tell us what finally happened to her. MNL does not list the vessel in 1882. Do you know what happened to her? Artnet kindly makes available an image of a Sunderland barque named Sarepta, painted by Italian artist Giovanni Luzzo. Who, I read, was active at Venice from 1840 thru 1877. You can see the painting also at left. The work is entitled, as I read it, 'Barque Sarepta of Sunderland Leaving the Port of Venice James Hudson Commander 1862'. Is this of 'our' Sarepta? LR only records one Sunderland registered vessel named Sarepta in LR editions of 1861/62 & 1862/63. This Sarepta. But so far I have spotted no references to James Hudson having ever been her captain. So I have an open mind as to the barque's correct identity until more data emerges. Anything you can add? #2177

4

  John Vanner
726 tons

29017
1860

The vessel, a wooden ship built by J. Haswell, would appear to have been launched in Jan. 1860 but was first registered, at London, on Oct. 29, 1860 (scroll to #29017). Was owned by 'Lidg'tt & S' i.e. John Lidgett and Sons of London. The Mercantile Navy List of 1865 lists J. J. Lidgett of Billiter Street, London, as her then owner. Signal letters QCVK. The vessel was likely under a British Government contract to carry emigrants to South Africa, Australia & New Zealand ('NZ') & was also involved in coastal trade in India, as well as to Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), Mauritius & South Africa. On Jan. 4, 1862 (search for Vanner), the vessel left Southampton for Table Bay, South Africa (arrived on Mar. 10, 1862) with 238 immigrants aboard. The ship made at least one voyage to Sydney, Australia, ex London via Plymouth, with 270 immigrants, arriving at Sydney on Nov. 23, 1863 - per this contemporary newspaper article. The ship then left for Auckland, NZ, but soon returned to port having lost 183 cattle & 160 sheep overboard. As per this newspaper article.
Paul Robins advises (thanks!) that his great grandfather, Frederick John Robins, served as the engineer aboard the ship (per this Aug. 6, 1863 crew list).
In late Jan. 1865, the vessel was being towed down the Hooghly river, Calcutta (now Kolkata, India) with a full cargo bound for Colombo, Ceylon. It stranded, off Nynan, while it was in the process of being moored. The vessel was not considered to be in danger, but a strong flood tide soon threw the ship onto her beam ends. This happened on Jan. 30, 1865, I read. A tug came to her assistance & rescued the crew except for the sailmaker who had been jammed against the rigging & died. In the confusion, the stem of the tug collided with the ship's mast & in so doing crushed the right thigh of her captain, William Moore. He was transported to hospital in Calcutta where his thigh had to be amputated. He soon, alas, died of his injuries & from loss of blood, it having taken 7 hours to get him to hospital. Captain Moore's wife was aboard John Vanner at the time, & was lucky to herself survive having been under water on 4 occasions during the havoc. So she witnessed the whole event & the later death of her husband. So two lives were lost in the disaster - Captain Moore & the sailmaker. Mainly as per this newspaper article, which is however, confusing as to its dates. It would seem that William Moore was the vessel's only captain. The resulting wreck, presumably, a danger to shipping, had to be blown up (ex here) with massive amounts of gunpowder. Anything you can add? #2121

5

  Warden Law
347 tons

44460
1862

The barque, which was launched on Feb. 15, 1862 & first registered, at Sunderland, in Mar. 1862 (scroll to #44460), is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1861/62 thru 1870/71, always owned by R. Gayner of Sunderland. For service initially, thru 1865/66, from Sunderland to New York, U.S.A., with 'Philpot' serving as the vessel's captain. From 1866/67, per LR, the vessel served from Sunderland to the Mediterranean with W. Knott serving as her captain. The Mercantile Navy Lists of 1865 thru 1870 all record the vessel as registered at Sunderland & owned by R. Gaynor. 116.0 ft. long, signal letters TVFW.
LR of 1870/71 states 'Abandoned'. On Jun. 8, 1870, per line 231 here, the 347 ton barque foundered at 46N/33W (in mid North Atlantic ocean) while en route from Sunderland to New York with a cargo of coal. Crew of 10 - none lost. Vessel then stated to be owned by Robert H. Gayner. Of interest, Robert H. Gayner later owned a replacement vessel named Warden Law, built at Sunderland in 1871. Anything you can add? #2210

HEMSLEY (or HELMSLEY), JOSEPH

OF SOUTHWICK, SUNDERLAND

I know nothing about 'Joseph Hemsley' or 'Joseph Helmsley' of Southwick, who would seem to have built 36 vessels in the years from 1833 thru 1849. Can you tell us about the shipbuilder?

A list of Sunderland built vessels - of origin unknown, but which has proven, over the years, to be most accurate - always lists the builder as 'Jos. Helmsley'. But it may be that 'Hemsley' is correct.

Below I record the first four detailed listings (of many to come) vessels that he built.

1   Dauson
238/231 later 217 tons

23508
1836

The webmaster believes that the vessel is correctly named at left & that the family name of the original owner was also Dauson. Lloyd's Register ('LR') so reported the vessel, however such names were elsewhere frequently mis-stated. The Mercantile Navy List ('MNL') records the vessel name correctly from 1865 thru 1869, but records the vessel's name as 'Dawson' from 1860 thru 1863. As do many other sources.
Dauson, a snow that was launched in Jun. 1836, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1836/37 thru 1869/70. It was owned, per LR, thru 1848/49 by R. Dauson of Sunderland, with 'Coxon' serving as the vessel's captain thru 1839/40, J. Berry for a portion of that year, Coxon again in 1840/41, then J. Berry thru 1844/45, & 'Thompson' thereafter thru 1848/49. For service always ex Sunderland, to St. Petersburg, Russia, in the only years where a destination is referenced - 1845/46 thru 1847/48. The North of England Maritime Directory, of 1848/49, lists 'Dawson & Thompson' as Dawson's then owners.
In 1848/49, Sharp & Co., also of Sunderland, became the vessel's owner, with 'Dodds' her new captain - both for the rest of the vessel's lifetime per LR. MNLs of 1865 thru 1869 all list Richard Sharp of Sunderland as Dauson's owner or managing owner. In Mar. 1854, per the North of England Maritime Directory of 1854/55, Dawson was owned by Richd. Sharp & Peter D. Dodd with Peter D. Dodd her captain. Turnbull's Shipping Register of 1856 (Dawson) & Christie's Shipping Register (Dauson) of 1858 have similar data though the latter lists the vessel as a barque. Always, per LR, for service ex Sunderland, with service to America noted in 1850/51 & 1851/52, to the Baltic in 1853/54 & 1854/55 & to France in 1855/56. Some crew lists are available here.
LR of 1869/70 notes that the vessel had been 'Wrecked'. 'Wiki' advises (thanks!) that on Aug. 10, 1869 Dawson, likely Dauson mis-spelled, a brig, 'sprang a leak and foundered. Her crew were rescued by the schooner Advance (Norway). Dawson was on a voyage from Sunderland, ... to Cronstadt, Russia'. Per 'The Standard' of London on Aug. 20, 1869. The webmaster has not himself spotted any newspaper reports re such loss. Can you tell us more? #2302

2   William Watson
259 later 283 tons

26105

Antoni
1836

A snow or brig. The vessel, which was launched in Jan. 1836, is recorded in Lloyd's Registers ('LR') from 1836/37 thru 1845/46, & from 1856/57 thru 1869/70. It would seem to have been owned by the 'Watson' family for most of its lifetime.
It was initially owned by 'Watson' of Newcastle for service from Sunderland to London. Her captain for the entire first LR period thru 1845/46 was named 'Watson'.
The North of England Maritime Directory of 1848/49 records William Watson, in Jul. 1848, as Newcastle registered & owned by W. Watson of South Shields. Turnbull's Shipping Register ('TR') of 1856, in 1855 data, advises that the vessel, now Hartlepool registered, was owned by W. Watson, of Hartlepool, with W. Walker now the vessel's captain. Such ownership data is confirmed by Christie's Shipping Register of 1858.
When LR listing resumed in 1856/57, 'Watson' of Hartlepool, (W. Watson) was the vessel's owner for service, where indicated, of Hartlepool to the Baltic. G. Storrow was her captain in 1857/58. G. Potter is LR noted to have been the vessel's captain from 1859/60 thru 1869/70.
While the vessel's other dimensions were LR indicated from 1863/64, William Watson's length was never LR stated. Signal letters PJSG, some crew lists are available here.
This listing has been revised in Aug. 2022 having seen a reference to the vessel here in a Lloyd's List report of events of Jan. 26, 1860. With 'Potter' noted to have then been her captain. On that day, 10 vessels including William Watson, were on shore at Robin Hood's Bay ('RHB') (SE of Whitby) & many more were lost or damaged elsewhere on the east coast. As a result of a violent gale & snowstorm that hit on the evening of Jan. 26, 1860. The vessel, it would seem, was not lost that day. It was got off & on Feb. 6, 1860 arrived under tow at Whitby, Yorkshire, in a most damaged condition. I presume that repairs were there effected.
'The Standard' newspaper, of London, in an extensive article you can read here, tells us of the extent of the storm & of the vast damage that was incurred by vessels large & small. William Watson is mentioned in the article but only most briefly.
The Mercantile Navy List ('MNL') records the vessel as being Hartlepool registered from 1857 thru 1876, & owned from 1865 thru 1876 (1870) by George Younghusband, of Hartlepool. I read here, that William Watson & George Younghusband were ship-owning associates & that 'Watson' died in 1863.
It would seem that MNL was significantly in error. From 1871. Read on.
On Apl. 28, 1870, per line 183 here, William Watson, a 259 ton brig was stranded at Aland (presumably the Åland Islands, Finnish, at the mouth of the Gulf of Bothnia), while en route from Stettin (now Szczecin, Poland) to Gefle (now Gävle, Sweden) in ballast. None of the crew of 9 were lost. The owner was stated to be Geo. Younghusband.
There is much more to the story! Ilkka Järvinen advises (thanks so much!) that at the time of her stranding the vessel, en route from Swinemunde to Gevle in ballast, was under the command of Andrew Wilson - who unfortunately mixed up the lights of the Lågskär lighthouse & the Svenska Björn light vessel, which had not yet been positioned after winter. She stranded to the south of Lågskärin, Åland islands. The vessel was not lost however. She was refloated, towed to Mariehamn (Åland Islands) & after repairs were effected was sold at auction to a Mr. Rohde of Helsinki, Finland. For 14,000 markka (then the currency of Finland). The vessel was renamed Antoni by her new owner. As per this contemporary newspaper article (middle column), & also as per this article (low in left column). An article in the Newcastle Journal of May 4, 1870, available here, states that William Watson was, when she stranded at Aland, rather owned by Mrs. Allen, of Hartlepool. And was expected to be a total loss.
So it would seem that the MNL listings, from 1871 thru 1876, are all in error.
Is there anything you can add? About what later happened to Antoni, perhaps? #2603

3   Eleanor
252/256 later 233 or 234 tons

2622
1839

A snow. Eleanor, which was launched in Aug. 1839, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1839/40 thru 1865/66 with the exception of 1844/45, 1849/50 & 1850/51.
The vessel was owned, per LR, thru 1850/51 by 'Thompson' of Sunderland, with, again per LR, 'Potts' (T. Potts apparently), her captain thru 1842/43, 'Smith' in 1842/43 & 1843/44 & 'Tulloch' from 1845/46 thru 1848/49. LR does not provide a captain's name in 1849/50 & 1850/51. The North of England Maritime Directory of 1848/9, in Apl. 1848 data, lists M. Thompson, of Monkwearmouth, Sunderland, as Eleanor's then owner.
The vessel's service, per LR, while 'Thompson' owned? From Sunderland to St. Petersburg, Russia, in 1839/40 & 1840/41, from Dartmouth, Devon, to London, in 1841/42, from Sunderland to Bordeaux, France, in 1842/43 & 1843/44, from Sunderland to Archangel, Russia, from 1845/46 thru 1847/48, then ex Sunderland.
I note that LR of 1843/44 records that the vessel had been 'Lost'. So far I have not been able to determine with any certainty what happened to Eleanor & when. Whatever it was, the vessel must have been seriously damaged but clearly must have been repaired & returned to service.
But ... I did find the following references to a vessel named Eleanor with 'Smith' her captain. On Jan. 17, 1844 Eleanor, 'Smith' in command, left Shields for Naples, Italy. On Apl. 1, 1844, it left Naples for Constantinople & on Jun. 3, 1844 arrived at Odessa (Black Sea, Ukraine) ex Naples. It arrived back at Constantinople on Jul. 6, 1844 ex Odessa, but I have not spotted later references. I have also noted that on Nov. 13, 1844, a vessel of the name, of & ex Sunderland & bound for London, with 'Douglas' in command, struck on the Scroby Sand (4 miles off the Norfolk coast) & became a wreck. Could it have been 'our' Eleanor?
It would seem that 'Tulloch', the vessel's captain as above, acquired the vessel in 1851/52. Later LRs thru to 1864/65 all record 'Tulloch' (from 1856/57 'Tullock'), as the vessel's owner. Turnbull's Shipping Register ('TR') of 1855 records Wm. Tulloch of Sunderland as the vessel's then owner with Peter Buchan her then captain. TR of 1856 has W. Tulloch as the vessel's owner. While Christie's Shipping Register of 1858 records William Tulloch as the owner of Eleanor, now of 233 tons.
Eleanor's captains, per LR, from 1851/52. J. Palmer in 1851/52, 'W. Edngtn' (Edington, I presume) from 1852/53 thru 1856/57 & 'Dryden' from 1857/58 thru 1865/66. For service from Sunderland to i) Archangel in 1851/52, ii) the Baltic in 1852/53 & 1853/54, iii) to London in 1854/55 & 1855/56, iv) to France in 1857/58 & v) otherwise ex Sunderland.
Even though LR records 'Tullock' as the vessel's owner thru 1864/65, it is clear that such data is incorrect. This Whitby, Yorkshire, shipping history book page tells us that the vessel became Whitby registered in 1858, owned by John Mennell of Thorpe (Robin Hood's Bay, Yorkshire). Further, that the vessel's owners, in 1871, were Thos. and Eleanor Rickinson, presumably of Whitby, who jointly held all 64 shares. The Mercantile Navy List ('MNL') confirms such data. It records the vessel as Whitby registered from 1859 & owned from 1865 thru 1871 by John Mennell of Thorpe. MNLs of 1872 thru 1875 all record Thomas Rickinson, of Whitby, as the vessel's then presumably managing owner.
85.5 ft. long, signal letters HPVR, many crew lists are available via here.
What finally happened to Eleanor? The Whitby history book page, referred to above, tells us that the vessel burnt in Sweden in Nov. 1874. Wikipedia reports (thanks!) that a brig named Eleanor caught fire at Bagvig, Sweden, on Dec. 10, 1874, and was scuttled. With no reference to her crew. I have not yet been able to locate where in Sweden 'Bagvig' is located. Wiki's source for such data was, I read, a report in the 'Liverpool Mercury' of Dec. 11, 1874. The vessel is not included in a U.K. Government list of ships lost in 1874 referred to on site page 186.
For the moment, we must rest the story at this point. Can you tell us more? About Eleanor's loss in 1874 & whatever happened to her in or about 1843 or 1844. #2652

4   Rockcliff or Rockliff
293/323 later 299 tons

2739
1839

A snow. There clearly was confusion as to the vessel's name - either Rockcliff or Rockliff (no 'c'). The vessel, which was launched in Jan. 1839, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1839/40 thru 1862/63, as Rockcliff thru to 1849/50 & as Rockliff thereafter. The webmaster thinks that Rockcliff is correct but there is doubt.
Initially registered at Newcastle, it was owned, per LR, thru 1850/51 by E. Graham of Newcastle, with, again per LR, J. Ord her captain thru 1841/42, 'Harrison' from 1841/42 thru 1848/49 & P. Clendon from 1848/49 thru 1850/51. For service from Sunderland to Odessa (Black Sea, Ukraine) in 1839/40, from Newcastle to the West Indies in 1846/47 & 1847/48, & otherwise ex London, Liverpool or Newcastle with no destination stated. The North of England Maritime Directory of 1848-9, lists the vessel (Rockliffe, a new variant), in Jul. 1848, as owned by E. Graham, of Newcastle.
From 1851/52 thru 1853/54, the vessel was, per LR, owned by T. Brown of Sunderland, with 'Foster' serving as the vessel's captain - for service from Sunderland to the West Indies in 1851/52 & from Sunderland to London in 1852/53. I note that in such brief period, LR recorded the vessel as a barque.
In 1853/54, per LR, Vint & Co. of Sunderland became the vessel's owner, likely her final owner. The North of England Maritime Directory of 1854/55 records the vessel, in Mar. 1854, as owned by Robt. Vint, Francis Foster & Robt. Brown, all of Sunderland, with Francis Foster her then captain. Turnbull's Shipping Registers of 1855 & 1856, both record Robert Vint & Francis Foster as the vessel's owners, the 1855 version recording Francis Foster as the vessel's captain. And last but not least, Christie's Shipping Register of 1858 confirms such data. LRs tell us that F. Foster was the vessel's captain thru 1856/57 & then R. Lidgert'n. The vessel's service when 'Vint' owned? Data is not LR provided after 1857/58, however, in 1854/55 the vessel served Hamburg, Germany, ex Shields, served France ex Sunderland in 1855/56 & 1856/57 & served from Cardiff to the Mediterranean in 1857/58.
It is clear that something significant happened to the vessel in very early 1857. I say that because 'Lloyd's List' of Jan. 9, 1857 reported that Richard Robert Lidgerton had filed a deposition re a matter which occurred to Rockliff while en route from Hartlepool to London. I discover, here, that Rockcliff, of & from Hartlepool for London, parted from her anchors on Jan. 6, 1857, when in Hollesley Bay (Suffolk coast, due E. of Ipswich), drove onto the beach & shortly afterwards went to pieces. The vessel's mate & four crewmen were drowned. Wikipedia adds (thanks!) that the survivors were rescued by the Coast Guard.
Could there have been a later owner & could the vessel have been Hartlepool owned at the end of its life? I do not know the answer. No vessel crew lists are available.
It is surprising, in view of the above i) that LR continued to list the vessel thru 1862/63 though with very little detail ii) that only in 1862/63 was the vessel LR noted to be 'LOST', & iii) that MNL also listed the vessel thru 1862 & (scroll to #2739) noted that a certificate re the vessel's loss was dated Oct. 24, 1862.
Is there anything you can add to, or correct, in the above account. #2489

HENDERSON J.
HENDERSON T.
W. & T. HENDERSON

Alas I know nothing about shipbuilders named 'Henderson'. A list of vessels built at Sunderland, available to the webmaster, lists 16 vessels built by the collective 'Henderson' over the years from 1827 thru 1857.

1   Napoleon
175 tons
1844

A snow or brig which was built by J. Henderson. The vessel, which was launched in Sep. 1844, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1844/45 thru 1849/50 only. Throughout such period, per LR, Napoleon was owned by J. Smith of Sunderland, with W. Smith always her captain. For service from Sunderland to Hamburg, Germany, in 1844/45 & thereafter ex Liverpool with no destination stated.
Such ownership looks to be doubtful, in part at least. The North of England Maritime Directory of 1848 reports that D. Palmer, J. Barnet & G. Forster, all of Monkwearmouth, Sunderland, were her owners in Apl. 1848. It seems clear that 'Palmer' served as the vessel's captain.
The webmaster first listed this vessel having seen, in a U.K. Government report, that Naploeon was lost on Oct. 28, 1852. At line 2096 here, the vessel there noted to be owned by Geo. Forster. A more detailed list of 1852 vessel losses was also Government published - you can read the page that relates to Napoleon here ex here. It states that the vessel, incorrectly noted to have been an 1843 barque, returning to Sunderland in ballast from Southampton, Hampshire, was lost on Oct. 27, 1852 at the entrance to the river at Sunderland. The vessel was hit by a heavy sea as she crossed the bar, & her wheel became disabled. Subject now only to wind & sea & uncontrollable by her crew, the vessel hit both the north & south piers at Sunderland, lost her masts overboard, sank, & within a few minutes had broken to pieces. With, alas, major loss of life. Just two of her crew survived - D. Palmer, her captain, and one crew member - so five crew members lost their lives that day. Little help was provided to her terrified crew - the Sunderland lifeboat was not launched to go to her assistance.
'Trimmer', a Napoleon crew member, had ventured out onto the vessel's bowsprit & made it safely onto the north pier. Palmer, the vessel's captain, clung to a floating cask & was eventually rescued by three local pilots, by pilot coble, when 'fast sinking by sheer exhaustion'. One crew member clung to some spars, shouted for 15 minutes for help, but was swept out to sea & perished. The names of those three brave pilots who were out there braving the pounding seas? While seeking the custom of incoming ships? William Watson Welsh, Alexander Campbell & William Ward.
The vessel's loss was widely reported. You can read a number of those reports here (1, 2, 3) - they are sad reading indeed. It would seem, per such reports, that the vessel had just been sold - likely to a Portsmouth owner. But to whom specifically & when is not known to the webmaster.
Can you tell us more? #2441

J. HEPTON

The webmaster's knowledge about J. Hepton is non-existent. A list of Sunderland built ships, available to the webmaster, lists just a single vessel that he built. Albion recorded below.

1   Albion
53 or 54 tons
1820

A brig, later a brigantine & a sloop. Albion, which was launched in Feb. 1820, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1820 thru 1827/28, then a gap of 5 years & again, I now know, if crypitically so, in the 1834 & 1835/36 LR editions.
Such LR editions thru 1827/28 all list the vessel as owned by 'Kempton' with J. Foster always her captain. For consistent service as a London coaster. My computer files, however, also contain a special 1820/21 LR edition which tells us differently. It has J. Hepton, the vessel's builder, as Albion's then owner with W. Forster (rather than J. Foster) her then captain, for service as a Sunderland coaster. It also specifically records her year of build (LRs at that time normally record a vessel's age but not their year of build). You can see that 1820/21 LR entry here.
The LR editions of 1834 & 1835/36 list a 54 ton vessel registered at Inverness, with D. Leman her captain. And that is all - no owner name, no rig, no date of build, routing etc. Now Helen Proudfoot came to our rescue back in 2021. She told me then (thanks Helen!) that Albion was registered as a brig in Inverness in 1820, was co-owned by David McLennan or McLeman & her home port was probably Fortrose on the Black Isle. Mcleman was her master. In 1823 she was re-registered as a sloop, still in Inverness. In 1824 she was apparently engaged in taking pit props to Newcastle & collecting coal for Inverness.
In late Nov. 2022. Helen is again in touch via the guestbook. Helen adds all of the following text.
i.e. that David 'McLennan' (he was in fact 'McLeman') of Rosemarkie is listed in the Harbour Register of Inverness as joint owner & master of the 54 ton brigantine Albion, home port Fortrose. McLeman captained her on what were very much the standard coal runs - south with timber & then north with coal. The 'Newcastle Courant' of Sep. 23, 1820, for instance, shows them arriving: 'Albion, Mclemon, Inverness, Timber'. In 1823, he had her converted to a sloop (presumably had a mast taken out?) & reregistered her with himself as joint owner. She then went back on the coal runs, sometimes moving astoundingly fast.
I fear she was the sloop recorded in the 'Caledonian Mercury' of Dec. 24, 1836 as having been wrecked near the Tarbat Ness Lighthouse: 'Inverness December 13. The weather still continues boisterous. On the 14th the sloop Albion of Inverness on her passage from Wemyss for Fortrose missed stays near the Tarbetness lighthouse; and the windlass having given way, the vessel was driven on the rocks – crew saved. Should the weather moderate, it is expected that the rigging and part of the cargo, may be saved.' After 1836, I can find no further reference to her.
Thank you, Helen, for sharing your research in this way.
Wikipedia references the vessel's loss here, which page also records another vessel wrecked at the same place - Mary. The loss of Albion is also referenced in this 1836 Lloyd's wreck list.
Is there anything any site visitor can add? #2665

W. HETHERINGTON

The webmaster's knowledge about W. Hetherington is non-existent. A list of Sunderland built ships, available to the webmaster, lists just 4 vessels, all of modest tonnage, built by the shipbuilder from 1837 thru 1840.

BENJAMIN HODGSON & CO.

The webmaster's knowledge about Benjamin Hodgson & Co. is non-existent. A list of Sunderland built ships, available to the webmaster, lists 51 vessels built by the shipbuilder from 1841 thru 1870.

1   Janus
102 tons
1844

A schooner. The vessel, which was launched in Oct. 1844, is not listed in Lloyd's Registers ('LR'), at least thru 1855/56. While LR seems not to state that a vessel must be of a minimum tonnage to be LR listed, I presume that her exclusion relates to her modest tonnage. We do have, however, data about the vessel from contemporary shipping registers.
In Apl. 1848, per the North of England Maritime Directory ('NEMD') of 1848/49, the vessel was registered at Sunderland & owned by J. Tindell & I. Norman. We have also a later cluster of directory listings that reference the vessel. In Mar. 1854, per NEMD of 1854/55, her owners were John Walker, Cuthbert Pattison & Andrew Wilkie, all of Seaham Harbour, with John Walker her captain. Such ownership data is substantially unchanged in later registers. i.e. Turnbull's Shipping Register ('TR') of 1855 (Walker still her captain) & 1856, & Christie's Shipping Register ('CR') of 1858. Though TR of 1856 refers to 'Patterson' & CR refers to 'Pattinson'. Always registered at Sunderland.
Readers should note that the last two registers do not provide the vessel's Official Number. It would seem that the vessel was, in fact, never granted an Official Number - which would mean that the vessel did not exist on Jan. 1, 1855 or in the very short period thereafter. So the registers are almost certainly in error. What finally happened to the vessel is unknown to the webmaster, but I suspect we will learn, one day, that the vessel was lost in or about 1854. Can you add anything additional and/or correct the above text? #2324

2   Ann
164 later 154 tons

22562
1845

A snow or brig, later a schooner. Ann, which was launched in Oct. 1845, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1845/46 thru 1863/64 (ex 1853/54), & again from 1874/75 thru 1877/78.
It was owned, thru 1847/48, per LR, by Ogle & Co., of Sunderland with 'Lawson' serving as the vessel's captain. For service from Sunderland to 'Bolgne' or 'Bolonge', which I think must mean Boulogne, France.
In 1848/49, per LR, the vessel became owned & captained by 'Tynemoth' of Blyth. For service from Blyth to Riga, Latvia, thru 1852/53, & from Blyth to Rouen, France, in 1854/55 & 1855/56. The vessel's captain in those last two years was, per LR, J. Stavers rather than 'Tynemoth'.
This vessel was first site listed having seen this (6th Ann on the page) 1908 Whitby, Yorkshire, shipping history page. Which tells us that Ann was first registered at Whitby in 1854, then owned by Harrison Allison of Robin Hood's Bay ('RHB'), Yorkshire, & by Capt., Edward Bedlington. The 1854 registration date is stated by this page (scroll to #22562) to have been Jun. 22, 1854. Christie's Shipping Register of 1858 records Harrison Allison, to be the vessel's owner but does not refer to Edward Bedlingon. But LRs of 1856/57 thru 1863/64, all record 'Alison & Co.', of Whitby, as the vessel's owner, with 'Bedlinton' her captain for such entire period.
The Mercantile Navy List ('MNL') records the vessel as Whitby registered from 1857 thru 1877, & records E. Bedlington, of RHB, as the vessel's owner or managing owner from 1865 thru 1871 (1870). From 1872 thru 1875, MNL rather lists Nathaniel Stanley, of London, as the owner of the vessel, still Whitby registered. I note that LRs of 1874/75 & 1875/76 record N. Stanley as the vessel's owner.
There was one further change of ownership. MNLs of 1876 & 1877 list Charles Dinham, of London, as Ann's new owner, as is also reported by LRs of 1876/77 & 1877/78 (C. Dinham).
78.0 ft. long, later 79.8 ft., signal letters NMBD, many crew lists, thru 1877, are available here.
What finally happened to Ann? LR of 1877/78 notes that the vessel had been 'Wrecked'. While the Whitby shipping history page tells us that the vessel was sold, as a wreck, at Hartlepool on Aug. 5, 1877.
The webmaster has not, so far at least, located details about the loss of 'our' Ann. I note, however that Wikipedia tells us (thanks!) that on Nov. 2, 1877, a brig of the name, en route from Blyth, Northumberland, to Lisbon, Portugal, ran aground on Cross Sand, off the coast of Norfolk. 'Wiki' further advised that such vessel was refloated and taken in to Great Yarmouth, Norfolk. Had a cargo of coal. It does not seem, to the webmaster at least, that such vessel is 'our' Ann. The 'Daily News' of London on Nov. 3, 1877 noted that that vessel was a Blyth registered vessel. I should also note that the Whitby shipping history book has proved itself, in my experience, to have been researched most carefully. But we must keep an open mind on the matter. I need the help of anybody who knows what did happen to 'our' Ann.
Can you help in any way, no matter how fragmentary your data? #2585

3   Morning Star
294 tons

28442
1860

A brig. The vessel is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed in 1860/61 & 1861/62 only. Was owned by R. Humble & registered at Sunderland, with 'Humble' the vessel's captain. For service from Sunderland to the Baltic. LR of 1861/62 notes that the vessel had been 'Wrecked'.
On Aug. 13, 1861, per line 1312 here, the 294 ton brig was lost off Gothland (Gotland, the largest Swedish island, Baltic Sea, off the E. coast of Sweden) while en route from Sunderland to Cronstadt (St. Petersburg, Russia) with a cargo of coal. Crew of 10 - none lost. Then owned by Richard Humble. Can you tell us more? #2129

4   Blackwood
307 tons

44510
1862

A snow or a brig. The vessel, which was completed in Dec. 1862, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1862/63 thru 1870/71, owned throughout by J. Blackwood of Sunderland. For service to the West Indies i) from Sunderland (from 1862/63 thru 1864/65) & ii) from the Clyde (from 1865/66 thru 1867/68). From 1868/69, service from Newport, Wales, to the Mediterranean is LR noted. With T. Cappon serving as the vessel's captain thru 1868/69 & G. Bravey thereafter. The Mercantile Navy Lists of 1865 thru 1870 advise that John Blackwood, of Sunderland, was the vessel's owner. 105.0 ft. long, signal letters TVKG.
LR of 1870/71 notes that Blackwood had been wrecked. On Oct. 3, 1870, per line 431 here, the 307 ton brig was abandoned off Cape Spartel (often spelled Spartal), Morocco, while en route from Sunderland to Alexandria, Egypt, with a cargo of coal. Crew of 10, none lost. Then owned by John Blackwood. Some crew lists are available here. Can you add anything additional. #2176

EDWIN HUTCHINSON
JOHN HUTCHINSON
RALPH HUTCHINSON
R. & W. HUTCHINSON

I have read that John Hutchinson was building wooden ships on North Sands very early in the 19th century & certainly in 1810. By 1815 he would seem to have moved to Panns, on the south side of the river just east of the road bridge. He was there for a great many years, witness the following advertisement which appeared in the 1858 edition of 'Christie's Annual Shipping Register, Maritime Compendium, and Commercial Advertiser'. A Google Book available via here. A few years earlier, in 1852, he was referenced as being 'J. Hutchinson, sen., (docks) Low-street' - at the foot of Sutherland-street, at a site where previously Mr. Thomas Nicholson had his yard. Also listed in 1852 were 'Hutchinson R., Monkwearmouth', and 'Hutchinson, R & W., (slipway) Panns'. It would seem, from the above, that John's sons may have followed their father into the shipbuilding business, not an unusual story, however. The 1852 data originates from 'The Nautical Magazine' of 1852, available as a Google Book here. I used to say Search for 'Hutchinson' but it would seem that the book is no longer visible so searching within it is no longer possible. The article in which the data was contained commenced at page 581 (thru 593), I believe. It is an important article re the history of shipbuilding in Sunderland in the early/mid 1800s & some day I should make the entire article available on site ex my downloaded electronic copy. Just two (of 13) of the pages are now available, here & here. Hopefully more pages soon.

There clearly was a Ralph Hutchinson also who would seem to have built 46 ships between the years of 1839 & 1853. I have read, re a vessel built in 1843, that such vessel was built at 'Three Cranes Wharf' at Monkwearmouth.

At page #253 in 'The Post Office Directory of Durham & Northumberland' of 1869, a 'Google' book, Edwin Hutchinson is stated to be a ship builder at Pann's Ferry.

I have noted elsewhere, I see, that in 1890 S. P. Austin & Son expanded their facilities to the eastwards & took over the Hutchinson shipbuilding premises which then included two small graving docks.

Vessels built by the varios shipbuilders named 'HUTCHINSON'

An extensive build list of Sunderland ships, a list that has proved itself in practice to be most accurate, records three builders of the name. J. Hutchinson from 1814 thru 1870, Ralph Hutchinson from 1839 thru 1853 & R. & W. Hutchinson from 1846 thru 1852. Building respectively 43, 46 & 11 ships. No builder named E. Hutchinson is in such list. But which 'Hutchinson' built a particular vessel is most difficult - Glencoe, built in 1851, is an example. It was built by Ralph Hutchinson in one build list & by R. & W. Hutchinson in another.

Until matters are clarified I will list them all in one time sequence, identifying what data I have available as to their builder.

1   Erato
181 later 179 tons
1815

A brig, later a barque. Built by J. Hutchinson. Erato, which I have read was launched in Aug. 1815, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1817/18 thru 1841/42 with the exception of 1832/33. The vessel's initial owner, thru 1819 per LR, was Moon & Co. for service from London to Quebec, Canada (1817/18), from Liverpool to New York (1818) & from Greenock, Scotland, to Jamaica (1819) - with 'Robinson' serving as the vessel's captain.
In 1820, LR records R. Watt & Co. as the vessels new owner, thru 1831/32, for continued service from Greenock to Jamaica thru 1822, from Liverpool to Limerick, Ireland, in 1823, & thereafter, from 1824 thru 1831/32, from Dublin, Ireland, to Jamaica. With 'Robinson' her captain thru 1822, T. Blair from 1822 thru 1824, & J. Robinson from 1824 thru 1831/32. There are a great many Lloyd's List references to Erato, 'Robinson' in command, serving Jamaica - from Quebec or from Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada, & back, or from Dublin to Jamaica, Saint John or Quebec, on occasion via Virginia, certainly thru 1827. It seems likely that 'Mossop' served as the vessel's captain in 1829.
In 1834, what I believe to be the same vessel, now of 179 tons but LR noted to be an Apl. 1815 vessel, is, per LR, owned by W. White of Cork, Ireland, for service as a Cork coaster. Thru 1841/42. With 'LLewelyn' her captain. The vessel's service would seem to have been to regularly carry coal from Newport, Wales, to Cork.
On Jan. 31, 1836, en route from Cork to Newport in ballast, Erato, 'Llewellyn' in command, was driven ashore at Northam Sands about 1/2 mile NW. of Bideford, N. coast of Devon. The crew were saved by lifeboat. While it was expected that the vessel would go to pieces, it was later got off & was reported, on May 5, 1836, to have been towed into nearby Appledore by Torridge, a steamer (the rivers Torridge & Taw join close to the sea near both Bideford & Barnstable). The vessel must have been successfully repaired. On Jul. 8/9 1836 a vessel of the name, likely this vessel, arrived at Newport, with 'Bomen' in command. 'James' may have been her later captain - a vessel of the name left Newport on Oct. 6, 1838 for Cork, with James in command.
LR lists the vessel thru 1841/42, so I presume that it continued in service for a few more years -  per LR, it became a barque in 1838/39.
The webmaster is unable to tell you what finally happened to the vessel & when. Can you tell us? Or otherwise add to or correct the above text? #2570

2   Four Sisters
283/315 tons
1843

A barque. Built by Ralph Hutchinson at, I read, Three Cranes Wharf, Monkwearmouth. Four Sisters, which was launched in May 1843, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1843/44 thru 1854/55 only. It was owned initially & thru 1852/53, by S. Mease of Newcastle, from 1845/46 of North Shields. The North of England Maritine Directory of 1848/49 records the vessel, on Jul. 24, 1848, as registered at Shields & owned by Sol (Soloman) Mease of North Shields. For service, in 1843/44 & 1844/45, per LR, from Sunderland to Quebec, Canada, & thereafter thru 1852/53 for service to the Mediterranean ex i) Shields (1845/46 thru 1849/50 & 1852/53) & ii) ex Newcastle (in 1850/51 & 1851/52). With, per LR, J. Stanners serving as the vessel's captain thru 1849/50, 'W. Couls'n', presumably 'Coulson', in 1850/51 & 1851/52, & J. Gibson in parts of both 1851/52 & 1852/53.
LRs of 1853/54 & 1854/55 record Fairley & Co., of Sunderland, as Four Sister's new owner for service from Sunderland to North America. With T. Fairley her captain. The North of England Maritime Directory of 1854/55 records the vessel, in Mar. 1854, as registered at Sunderland & owned by Barker and John. C. Fairley, of Sunderland, with Thos. Fairley her then captain.
Some 'best efforts' Four Sisters operational history. 'Stanners' - On Feb. 22, 1847, the vessel arrived at Constantinople (now Istanbul, Turkey) ex Odessa (Black Sea, Ukraine) bound for Rotterdam. On Apl. 21, 1848, the vessel arrived at Antwerp, Belgium, ex Odessa. 'Coulson' - On Dec. 9, 1848, the vessel arrived at Falmouth ex Alexandria, Egypt. On May 4, 1849, the vessel was cleared ex Constantinople for Odessa. On Apl. 29, 1850, Four Sisters arrived at Gibraltar ex Alexandria bound for Queenstown, Ireland. And soon left Queenstown for Dublin, Ireland. On Oct. 2/5 1850, the vessel arrived at Constantinople ex Newcastle or Shields. It would seem that the vessel went on to Karamatti or Karamati or Keramoti (possibly near Kavala in northern Greece), since on Jun. 5/7, 1851, the vessel arrived at Queenstown & Waterford, Ireland, ex such location. En route, when at her loading berth at 'Karamote', the vessel was blown over by a hurricane & filled with water - the crew were all saved. On Feb. 3, 1851 it was reported that the vessel had been raised, found to be undamaged & was loading. The eventful voyage continued. The vessel had to later put into Malta damaged & with her cargo shifted, having encountered bad weather. All as per these 'Lloyd's List' reports. 'Gibson' - On Mar. 10, 1852, the vessel arrived at Limerick, Ireland, ex Odessa. It went on to Constantinople via Malta & on Aug. 27, 1852 arrived back at Constantinople ex Berdianski (Berdyansk, Sea of Azov, SE Ukraine). 'Fairley or Fairly' - On Apl. 19, 1853, the vessel left Sunderland for Quebec. On Sep. 19, 1853, the vessel was at Elsinore, Denmark, ex Hull, bound for Danzig (now Gdańsk, Poland).
A Sunderland shipping website that requests no links or recognition tells us that Four Sisters was 92.8 ft. long. It also notes that on Feb. 21, 1853 the vessel was registered in the names of Barker & John Clark Fairley, & on that very same date, i.e. Feb. 21, 1853, the register for the vessel was closed - endorsed 'Lost'. We thank such site.
What finally happened to Four Sisters? On Sep. 2, 1854, the vessel was abandoned, at 49N/33W (roughly in mid North Atlantic), in a very leaky & unmanageable condition, while en route from Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada, to Hull, Yorkshire, with a cargo of timber. With 'Fairly' in command. As per these 'Lloyd's List' reports. The webmaster has not read how the crew was rescued at sea & later made their way to Sunderland.
Can you add to or correct the above text? #2622

3   Elbe
260/291 tons

4280
1845

A snow. Built by Ralph Hutchinson in one build list & by R. Hutchinson in the other. The vessel, which was launched in Oct. 1845, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1845/46 thru 1865/66. It was, per LR, owned thru 1863/64 by Hudson & Co. of Sunderland. With, per LR (not all years reported the names of her captains), 'Goble' serving as the vessel's captain thru 1849/50, then 'Jobbling' thru 1853/54, 'Warden' in 1854/55 & 1855/56, 'Howe' in 1860/61 & a portion of 1861/62 & 'Turner' from 1861/62 thru 1865/66. For initial service from Sunderland to Bordeaux, France, & from Sunderland to i) the Mediterranean from 1846/47 thru 1849/50, ii) London in 1854/55, iii) the West Indies in 1856/57 & 1857/58. For many years the vessel is LR recorded as having sailed ex London. The North of England Maritime Directory of 1848/49 lists G. W. & R. M. Hudson, of Sunderland, as the vessel's owner in Apl. 1848. The equivalent register of 1854/55 lists Geo. Hudson & Ralph M. Hudson as her owners in Mar. 1854 - with Robert Warden her then captain. Turnbull's Shipping Register of 1856 repeats such owner names. Christie's Shipping Register of 1858 tells us that Ralph M. & George W. Hudson then owned the vessel, now of 259 tons. 
LR of 1864/65 did record Hudson & Co. as the vessel's owner but the name was struck out. It is surely possible that the vessel had been sold.
90.0 ft. long. Crew lists for 1863 & 1864 are available.
LR of 1865/66 notes that the vessel had been 'Wrecked'. The webmaster is not so far aware of what happened to the vessel nor exactly when. Can you tell us more? #2304

4   Cotfield
543/604, later 571 & 543 tons

23163
1847

A barque, later a ship, later a barque. Built by Ralph Hutchinson. Cotfield, which was launched in Jul. 1847, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1848/49 thru 1865/66, owned thru 1853/54 by E. Graham & registered at Newcastle, for service initially from Sunderland to Calcutta (now Kolkata), India, in 1850/51 for service from Shields to India & thereafter from London to Calcutta. With P. Cargey, per LR, serving as the vessel's captain. The North of England Maritime Directory of 1848/49 lists the vessel as a ship, in Jul. 1848 owned by E. Graham of Gateshead.
Some 'best-efforts' operational history while 'Graham' owned. i) On Jul. 23, 1847, the vessel was at Deal, Sussex, ex Newcastle, 'Cargey' in command, bound for Calcutta - arrived on Dec. 9, 1847. Before it returned to London, it made a side-trip to Mauritius, returning to Calcutta via Madras (now Chennai), India. On Jun. 27, 1848, Cotfield left Calcutta for London arriving in late Nov. 1848. ii) On Jan. 3, 1849, the vessel (Cargey) at Deal left for Calcutta via Cork, Ireland. It arrived back at Shields on Jan. 25, 1850. iii) A quick turn-around! On Jan. 29, 1850 the vessel (Cargey) was again at Deal bound for Calcutta. Where it arrived on May 12, 1850 & later left for London on Jul. 4, 1850 -  arriving back at Gravesend, London, on Nov. 23, 1850.  iv) the vessel en route to Calcutta, 'Fenn', I believe in command (the name is recorded as Fenn, Frim, Finn & Finnie) put back into Deal with modest damage having been in contact with something not defined. It arrived at Calcutta on Jun. 3, 1851, left Calcutta on Aug. 2, 1851 & on Dec. 8, 1851 arrived back off Margate, Kent. v) A puzzle. The vessel would seem to have left Gravesend for Calcutta on Feb. 21, 1852 with 'Finnie' in command but arrived at Calcutta on Jun. 22, 1852 with 'Storey' her captain.  It arrived back at Deal on May 27, 1853.
In 1854/55 per LR, the vessel, now per LR also a ship, became owned by H. Dobbin of London for service from Bristol to Australia, with R. (Robinson) Waite her captain (per LR in 1854/55 & 1855/56 only). An advertisment for the vessel's voyage to Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, via Adelaide, South Australia.
The vessel's sole voyage to Australia. Cotfield left Bristol for Adelaide, on Aug. 1, 1853 (I read) with R. Waite in command, a general cargo & many emigrant passengers. Becalmed for 4 days in the river Avon - it would seem that the Aug. 1, 1853 departure from Bristol is incorrect. In fact, I have now read, the vessel left Bristol rather on Jul. 23, 1853 (per Australian & New Zealand Gazette) though have also read Jul. 15, 1853. It arrived at Adelaide on Nov. 30, 1853, with 202 passengers. A list of her passengers. I have read that there were three deaths on the voyage - one of those who died was, I read, Mr. Kerr, the ship's mate, who fell overboard when the vessel lurched. A difficult voyage for this passenger (search Ctrl/F for Cotfield).
Cotfield went on to Melbourne & later (Mar. 28, 1854) left for Callao, Peru, in ballast. The vessel ran into severe weather off the coast of Chile & put into an island 200 miles S. of Talcahuano, Chile, 'having lost all sails, and otherwise disabled and short of provisions, the passengers having, for the previous forty days, lived on two ounces of flour per man'. As you can read here ex here.  I read that the vessel reached Callao on Jul. 9, 1854 & again on Nov. 25, 1854 from the Chinchas (Chincha Islands, noted for their guano deposits).
In 1856/57, per LR, 'Thompson' became the owner of the vessel, now a barque again, registered at Sunderland & from 1858/59 registered at London. For service ex Sunderland (in the period of 1856/58), from Plymouth to India (in the period of 1858/61) & thereafter for service from Sunderland to North America. It seems likely that the vessel was not so registered at Sunderland. The Mercantile Navy Lists ('MNL') of 1857 thru 1865 all record the vessel as London registered, in 1865, of 572 tons, owned by Robert Thompson, jun., of Sunderland. The vessel is not listed in MNL of 1866. No captain's name is LR listed during the period of 'Thompson' ownership.
More 'best-efforts' operational history. i) On Nov. 23, 1856, with 'Ballentire', maybe 'Ballantine' in command, the vessel arrived at Galle, Ceylon (now Sri Lanka) ex Moulmain (now Mawlamyine, Burma (Myanmar)), & on Sep. 22, 1857 arrived back at London, Gravesend. ii) On Jan. 5, 1857, 'Smith' now in command, the vessel, en route to Madras, put into Queenstown leaky. It would seem that the necessary repairs could not be effected at Queenstown so Cotfield put back into Plymouth, to later continue its voyage to Madras on Mar. 2, 1858, with 'Christie' her new captain. On May 2, 1859 the vessel arrived back at Liverpool ex Moulmain. iii) On Sep. 15, 1859 the vessel (Christie) arrived at Quebec, Canada, ex Sunderland. iv) On Feb. 6, 1860, the vessel (Christie) left Sunderland for Carthagena, Spain, & left that port for Quebec on Mar. 27, 1860, arriving there on May 22, 1860. On Jul. 21, 1860, the vessel arrived back at Liverpool. v) The vessel (Christie) left Liverpool for Quebec on Aug. 25, 1860, arriving at Quebec on Oct. 27, 1860.
123.0 ft. long, signal letters NQLD, no vessel crew lists seem to be available.
LR of 1864/65 notes that the vessel had been 'Wrecked'. Wrong because it happened much much earlier than 1864/65. And MNL had it wrong too!
On Jan. 26, 1861, per line 1063 in this U.K. Government wreck list, Cotfield of 543 tons, a barque, was abandoned in the North Atlantic, at 42N/42W (about 1,000 miles SE of St. John's Newfoundland), while en route from Quebec, Canada, to London with a cargo of timber. Crew of 19 - none lost. This newspaper report tells us (in purple) that her crew were rescued by William and Jane, & landed at Queenstown, Ireland. William & Jane at the time, was en route from New Orleans to Liverpool with a cargo of cotton. Cotfield is stated to have been, at the time of her loss, owned by Robert Thompson, Junr. It seems likely that 'Christie' was then her captain.
Anything you can add? Or correct? #2582

5   Hardwicke
286 later 268 tons

12065
1848

A snow or brig. Built by Ralph Hutchinson in one build list & by R. Hutchinson in the other. The vessel, which was launched in May 1848 & first registered, at Sunderland, on May 20, 1848 (scroll to #12065), is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1848/49 thru 1883/84 with the exception of the years from 1870/71 thru 1873/74. For the entire period it would seem that Hardwicke was owned by the Nicholson & Thorman families. Thru 1857/58, per LR, the vessel was owned by 'Nicholson' of Sunderland, for service from Sunderland to America thru 1852/53 & from Sunderland to the Mediterranean thereafter thru 1857/58. The North of England Maritime Directory of 1848/49 lists, in Aug. 1848, her owners as being T. Nicholson of Sunderland & J. Thorman of Chilton Moor (located SW of Sunderland, W. of Houghton le Spring). In the years thru 1857/58, LR indicates that T. Price was always the vessel's captain.
Now a truly massive gale hit the Hartlepool area at the end of Oct. 1852. The vessel was first site listed having read (in blue) that during such storm Hardwicke, trying to gain the safety of the harbour at Hartlepool, missed the entrance to the West Docks by just five or six yards & struck the south pier. And then drifted on shore. She clearly must have been repaired & returned to service. The grounding of Hardwicke is noted in these 'The Lifeboat' pages.
The Nicholson/Thorman ownership is confirmed by a number of contemporary shipping registers. The 1854 edition of the North of England Maritime Directory lists Thos. Nicholson & John Thurman as her owners in Mar. 1854 with John Huet her then captain. Such data is confirmed by Turnbull's Shipping Register ('TR') of 1855, while TR of 1856 lists only J. Thurman of Seaham-harbour as her then owner. The last available pertinent shipping register is Christie's Shipping Register of 1858. It clarifies that J. Thurman meant Jane Thurman, indeed of Seaham Harbour.
When per LR 'Thorman' owned, Hardwicke is LR noted to have served i) from Sunderland to the Baltic in 1858/59 & 1859/60, ii) from Sunderland to Quebec, Canada, in 1860/61 & 1861/62, & iii) from Shields to London from 1862/63 thru 1869/70. With 'Yarrow' LR noted to have been the vessel's captain from 1858/59 thru 1869/70.
When LR listing of the vessel resumed in 1874/75, R. Thorman was noted to be her owner, in 1874/75 & 1875/76, & Jane Thorman thereafter. No captain name is LR noted in such period. I note, however, that from 1865 thru 1881, the Mercantile Navy Lists ('MNL') record not Jane Thurman as the vessel's owner or managing owner - rather they consistently report Robert Thurman of Seaham. The vessel is not MNL listed in 1882. I further note, though, that TR of 1874 lists Hardwick, clearly this vessel, as 100% owned by Jane Thorman. It seems to be likely that Robert Thurman must have died in or about 1873.
93.0 ft. long, 93.1 ft from 1874/75, signal letters KWGH, first LR listed at 268 tons in 1862/63. Many crew lists are available, thru 1880.
The webmaster has not yet spotted what finally happened to the vessel, likely in or about 1881. Can you tell us more? #2452

6   Capital
260/284 tons

12208
1850

A snow. Both Sunderland build lists record Ralph Hutchinson as her builder. The vessel was launched in May 1850, & first registered, at Hartlepool, on Jun. 11, 1850 (scroll to #12208). It is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1851/52 thru 1863/64. Thru 1858/59, the vessel was, per LR, owned by J. Parkin of Hartlepool, for service from Sunderland to the Baltic thru 1855/56 & from Blyth to the Baltic from 1856/57 thru 1858/59. With, per LR, W. Playford serving as the vessel's captain thru 1855/56 & then 'McCarthy' thru to 1858/59. Marwood's North of England Maritime Directory of 1854/55 lists Joseph Parkin, of Hartlepool as Capital's then owner, with Robert Parkin (rather than Playford) her then captain. Turnbull's Shipping Register of 1856 (1855 data) lists J. Perkin (with an 'e') of Hartlepool as the vessel's owner with A. Robertson her then captain. While Christie's Shipping Register of 1858 lists Joseph Parkin of Hartlepool as her then owner. Christopher Stevens tells us (thanks!) that Joseph Parkin died in 1858.
In 1859/60 LR advises that Loveday & Co. of Hartlepool, had become the vessel's owner for service ex Hartlepool, i) to Hamburg, Germany, in 1859/60 & 1860/61 & ii) to  the Baltic thereafter, with 'Chapman' serving as the vessel's captain throughout.
95.0 ft. long, signal letters KWSR. An 1863 Capital crew list is available.
LR of 1863/64 notes that the vessel had been 'Abandoned'. This Wikipedia page tells us (thanks so much!) that on Jul. 16, 1863 a vessel named Capital, surely this vessel, foundered in the North Sea while en route from Hartlepool to Cronstadt (St. Petersburg, Russia). If you can provide additional data as to the circumstances of the loss of the vessel, or indeed, anything else, do consider being in touch with the webmaster. #2327

7   Ellen
220/200 later 189, 183 & 196 tons

2736
1850

A snow. Ellen is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1851/52 thru 1869/70, then an LR silence of 4 years, & again from 1874/75 thru 1880/81. During the first LR period, the vessel is consistently listed as built in 1851, surely in error.
A Sunderland shipping website that requests no links or recognition, notes that Ellen was initially registered at Stockton, owned by William Thompson Dixon & John Charles Longstaff, both of Stockton. That the vessel became South Shields registered on Oct. 23, 1850, owned by Robert Morrison, Jnr., and, (a surprise) was London registered on Aug. 22, 1853.
Per LR, Ellen, from 1851/52 thru 1855/56 was owned by R. Morrison, of South Shields, for service from Sunderland to the Mediterranean, with 'Stephenson' serving as the vessel's captain. Strangely, perhaps, the vessel is not listed in the North of England Maritime Directory of 1854/5. Maybe it was London registered at that time?
LRs of 1856/57 thru 1861/62 list Watson & Co., of Sunderland, as the vessel's then owner for service from Sunderland to Holland, with 'P. Hazeltn' her then captain. Such owner & captain names are clarified by Turnbull's Shipping Register ('TR') of 1855 which lists Philip Hazleton as the vessel's captain & Geo. Watson & Charles Murray, both of Sunderland, as the vessel's then owners. Which data is confirmed (as to the ownership) by TR of 1856 & Christie's Shipping Register of 1858.
In 1861/62 & 1862/63, LR lists Ellen, now of 189 tons, as owned by R. Adamson, of Sunderland, for service from Sunderland to Ostend, Belgium - with R. Eavirey her new captain.
'Eavirey' would seem to have continued to serve as Ellen's captain, from 1862/63 thru 1869/70 per LR, the vessel being owned in such period by M. Bedlington of Whitby. For continued service from Sunderland to Ostend. The webmaster believes there likely was a relationship between the Bedlington & Storm families, both of Whitby. I say that in part because the Mercantile Navy Lists ('MNL') of 1865 thru 1875 all list, not M. Bedlington but rather Isaac Storm, of Robin Hood's Bay ('RHB'), Yorkshire, as the vessel's owner. From 1876 thru 1880, the MNLs list Matthew Bedlingon, also of RHB. LR records Isaac Storm the vessel's owner in 1874/75 & 1875/76, W. Bedlington in 1876/77 & 1877/78 & M. Bedlington from 1878/79 thru 1880/81. I note that MNL's from 1878 list the vessel at 167 tons only.
This Whitby shipping history book page (bottom item) has proved to be most helpful re vessels registered at Whitby. It tells us that Ellen became Whitby registered in 1862, owned by Matt. Bedlington. And tells us also that in May 1879 the vessel was owned by Thos. Smith with 16 shares, Oliver Storm with 16 shares, & Matt., Jacob, & Will Bedlington with 32 shares jointly. 
LR of 1880/81 notes that the vessel had 'Stranded'. I have read that the stranding occurred on Oct. 26, 1880. For some years now, I did not know what had happened to the vessel & where. But thought it likely that it was lost during a truly massive storm that hit most of the U.K. & much of the Continent in late Oct. 1880. Particularly hard hit was the E. coast north of the Humber. To give some idea of the extent of the storm, between Mablethorpe & Grimsby, both Lincolnshire, no less than 180 vessels are stated to have been driven ashore. There were many many more such groundings elsewhere around the country. Ellen may well have been caught up in that giant storm, though I do not know specifically that is so, nor, if it was involved, where her stranding occurred. At the above 'storm' link, a brief comment from Whitstable, Kent, noted that a vessel named Ellen was lost on the E. coast.
Now the Whitby shipping history book page referenced above, tells us (bottom item) that 'our' Ellen was wrecked near Hornsea (Yorkshire) in 1880. Wikipedia advises (thanks!) that on Oct. 28, 1880 a vessel of the name, en route from Ramsgate, Kent, to Newcastle, was driven ashore and wrecked at Cloughton Wyke, Yorkshire. Further that her crew were rescued by rocket apparatus. Was it 'our' Ellen? I do not know, but I point out that Cloughton Wyke & Hornsea are not very far apart. It would be most helpful to be able to read what was stated about Ellen in 'The Times' of London on Oct. 29, 1880 & the 'Yorkshire Herald' of Nov. 1, 1880, the 'Wiki' data sources. Perhaps its port of registry or other details were noted which would assist in her identification.
Sorry but that is all I presently have re the vessel's loss. The webmaster needs your help!
87.0 ft. long (LR of 1863/64), 87.2 ft. from 1874/75, signal letters HQKJ. Many crew lists are available here.
Can you tell us more about what, in fact happened to Ellen in Oct. 1880? The name of her then captain? #2651

8   Glencoe
320/338 later 314 tons

2170
1851

A snow or brig, launched in Jul. 1851. Built by Ralph Hutchinson in one build list & R. & W. Hutchinson in another. Glencoe is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1851/52 thru 1872/73. Owned, thru 1860/61, per LR, by 'Davison' of North Shields, initially for service ex Sunderland but from 1851/52 thru 1858/59 for service from Shields to Barcelona, Spain, & from 1859/60 for service from Shields to the Mediterranean. With, again per LR, M. Hall (M. F. Hall in 1851/52) her captain thru 1858/59 & 'A. Laurensn' in 1859/60 & 1860/61. The North of England Maritime Directory of 1854/55 records the vessel as Shields registered in 1854 & owned by Wm. Davison of North Shields with Mackford Hall her then captain. Turnbull's Shipping Registers ('TR') of 1855 & 1856 both record the vessel as registered at Shields & owned by W. Davison of North Shields. TR of 1855 lists Wm. Dixon as the vessel's then captain. The owner name is clarified by Christie's Shipping Register of 1858 to mean William Davison.
From 1861/62 LR records Glencoe at 314 tons only. In that year also, the vessel would seem to have been briefly owned by T. Metcalfe & then by W. Irvin, both of North Shields, for consistent service (Irvin) from Shields to Spain thru 1866/67. With, in 1861/62 per LR, J. Wallace her captain being replaced by W. Dixon (1861/62 thru 1867/68). The Mercantile Navy Lists ('MNL') of 1865 thru 1867 record William Irvin of North Shields as her then owner.
In 1867/68 per LR, & thru 1871/72, Morrison & Co., of Sunderland, became the vessel's owner for service from Sunderland to the Baltic in 1867/68 & then ex Sunderland. Per MNLs of 1868 thru 1871 (1870), that meant James C. Morrison. With J. Morrison (no initial provided) always her captain. 
In 1871/72 per LR, J. Morgan of Sunderland, John Morgan per MNL of 1872, became Glencoe's owner for service ex Sunderland & in 1872/73 for service from Sunderland to 'NDieppe' (Nieuwe Diep, N. end of North Holland Canal, effectively Amsterdam). With E. Goodlad her captain.
101.0 ft. long, signal letters HNBQ. Crew lists are available here.
On Dec. 14, 1872, per line 2798 here (a U.K. Goverment report), the 314 ton brig sank near the Weser (the river at Bremen, Germany), while en route from Sunderland to Bremerhaven, Germany. Crew of 9 - none lost. Then owned by John Morgan. Wikipedia tells us (thanks!) that Glencoe rather sank on Dec. 10, 1872 off the mouth of the Weser and 10 miles off Heligoland. And adds that her crew were rescued by the American full-rigged ship Kearsarge. The webmaster has tried, without success, to find out whether the Kearsarge that rescued the Glencoe crew was the Kearsarge, which ship sank C.S.S. Alabama off the French coast in 1864 during the American Civil War. Five illustrated pages related to such famous battle are available via this webmaster page.
Can anybody tell us more about the circumstances of Glencoe's loss? The weather conditions perhaps? #2492

9   Ballarat
464/538 tons
Hull 8

417
1852

A barque. Both lists of Sunderland built ships record R. W. Hutchinson as the vessel's builder. The vessel, which was launched in Jun. 1852, is Lloyd's Register ('LR') listed from 1853/54 thru 1869/70. It was, per LR, always owned by M. Lonie of Sunderland - i.e. Martin Lonie per The North of England Maritime Directory of 1854/55 & Christie's Shipping Register of 1858. Turnbull's Shipping Register of 1856 refers only to M. Lonie. LR notes that G. Thirkell (George Thirkell) served as the vessel's captain from 1853/54 thru 1863/64, then being replaced, for the rest of the vessel's lifetime, thru 1869/70 per LR, by R. Davison. It seems unlikely that the vessel actually survived thru 1869/70. The Mercantile Navy List ('MNL') records the vessel as registered at Sunderland thru 1863. And while MNL of 1864 is not available, the vessel is not recorded in MNLs of 1865 thru 1868.
The vessel's service per LR? - i) from Sunderland to Calcutta (now Kolkata), India, in 1853/54 & 1854/55, ii) from London to India in the period of 1855/56 thru 1858/59, iii) from London to Australia in 1859/60, iv) ex Liverpool from 1860/61 thru 1862/63, v) from London to Cape of Good Hope, South Africa, in 1863/64 & vi) thereafter, thru 1869/70 for service from Sunderland to India.
The voyage to Australia? Ballarat left London on Sep. 30, 1858 & after a voyage of 127 days arrived at Adelaide, South Australia, with a general cargo & 9 passengers. The vessel had encountered heavy weather en route & a seaman at the wheel had been killed - hit by the spanker boom. Upon arrival the captain pressed charges against his chief officer, James Thomson, for insubordination - Thomson was sentenced by the Court to 2 months in gaol. The captain had trouble with 3 crew members also. I have not spotted the date when the vessel left to return to London - likely on or about Mar. 22, 1859.
123.2 ft. long. Just a couple of crew lists are available.
I learn that 'Shipwrecks & Salvage in South Africa, 1505 to the Present', written by Malcolm Turner & published in 1988, reports the vessel's loss at page 190. On Oct. 19, 1864, Ballarat was at Algoa Bay (E. coast of S. Africa, about 425 miles E. of Cape of Good Hope), having arrived, R. Davison in command & with a crew of 13, with a cargo of coal for the Diamond Steamship Company. Late that night, Ballarat was wrecked during a SE gale. There was no loss of life - the entire crew were saved by lifeboat.  A 'pdf' file, available here, rather references Oct. 17, 1864 as her date of loss. Can you tell us anything more? Or correct the above text? #2289

TO END THE PAGE

For your pleasure and interest.

A total change of subject matter! A wonderful artwork, an oil on canvas by French artists Pierre-Jacques Volaire (1729-1802). The artist's impression of the scene when Mount Vesuvius erupted in A.D. 79, & buried the Roman cities of Pompeii & Herculaneum.

Enjoy. Do view it in a larger size by clicking the image below.

There have been, I understand, many eruptions of Mount Vesuvius over the centuries. The artist was at Naples, Italy, & maybe was inspired by one such eruption, in 1771. He painted a number of works featuring Mount Vesuvius. The volcano is, I read, today regarded as being one of the most dangerous volcanoes in the whole world - because of the sheer number of people (3,000,000) who live nearby.

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