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SHIPS REPORTS

 

As published in the South Australian Government Gazette 1855.

 

This is not a complete list of vessels arriving or reported on in the gazette

 

Vessel

Information

Published date

admiral boxer

Arrived on the 21st August with 384 Government emigrants. This ship was well adapted for emigrants, being lofty and well ventilated. The discipline and management in this ship were excellent. All the people expressed themselves well satisfied with their diet and treatment. The casualties consisted of 3 births and the death of one infant child. 153 young women arrived by this ship, adding to the accumulating numbers of those who can find no employment.

25th Oct 1855

Aliquis

Arrived from Liverpool with 394 souls. She was commanded by Mr Thomas Pain and Dr John Mackenzie was the Surgeon-Superintendent. No births or deaths had occurred during the voyage, but after arrival there was one birth on board before the lay days were expired. This vessel arrived in beautiful order; great method seemed to prevail in all the details of management.

25th Oct 1855

Caroline

Arrived from Southampton on the 24th of April with 358 immigrants. There were six births and thirteen deaths at sea. The ship was commanded by Mr Ramsay Walker, and Mr John M Burke was the surgeon-superintendent. The general management on board was good, though it was found necessary to withhold the gratuity of the chief mate, as his conduct was far from satisfactory. The immigrants by this ship appeared to have been well selected.

 

12th July 1855

constantine

Arrived from Plymouth on the 2nd July, bringing to the colony 233 souls. Four births and one death occurred before disembarkation. She was commanded by Mr Mansel Rogers, and Mr William Mateer was the Surgeon-Superintendent. The ship was generally well adapted for emigrants, though rather indifferently lighted in the fore part. There was very little sickness during the voyage. The emigrants conducted themselves well, and the master and officers of the ship gave every assistance and support to the Surgeon-Superintendent. The emigrants by this ship were generally a badly-selected class of persons.

25th Oct 1855

Coromandel

Left Southampton on the 20th September 1854 and arrived in Port Adelaide on the 8th of January 1855 with 289 immigrants, having made the voyage in 111 days. Four deaths and six births took place at sea. There were 105 single women in this ship, almost all Irish, a class of persons for whom there is no demand. The cook’s gallery was most injudiciously placed immediately in front of the poop, which was partly occupied by emigrants. The heat and the smoke were a constant cause of annoyance during the voyage. The people were brought out in most excellent order, and all expressed themselves satisfied. They were under the care of Dr. James Barlas, the surgeon-superintendent, it being the fifth time he has had the charge of emigrants.

 

3rd May 1855

David Malcolm

Arrived from Plymouth on the 30th April. She landed 239 souls. During the voyage three births and one death are reported. This is a teak built ship and well adapted for emigrants, but she was sent to sea insufficiently caulked; a good deal of leakage was the consequence, and the bedding of the people was often wet. The single women by this ship were of a class unsuitable for this colony. The discipline and general management of the people reflected the greatest credit on Dr. Mahony, the surgeon-superintendent and on Mr J B Lee, the master of the ship. The David Malcolm brought fifty two young women without any return of the countries from which they were selected; but judging from their names, they appear to have been almost all Irish.

 

12th July 1855

Dirago

Arrived from Liverpool on the 22nd November, after a passage of 107 days. She landed 482 immigrants. Fourteen deaths and twelve births took place at sea. This ship arrived in very excellent order. The cleanliness, general management and discipline of the people, reflected the highest credit on Mr W L Ecklen, the surgeon-superintendent. The ship itself was of a first class character for emigrants, having ample room and height between decks, and was well ventilated. The male and female hospitals were large and convenient. The surgeon-superintendent speaks highly of the efficient support and co-operation he received from the master and all the officers of the ship. The mortality, with one exception was confined to young and delicate children, and was caused chiefly by diarrhoea. The surgeon-superintendent seems to have had more trouble with enforcing the regulations among the single men, than all the others on board. He speaks highly of the conduct of the single women, who were a well selected set of persons, and adapted for the requirements of the Colony. In this ship the baking succeeded better than usual. the size of the oven precluded the possibility of baking twice in the week, a sufficient to supply all the emigrants with soft bread twice a week. The yeast used was made by using what the surgeon called porter bottoms, and answered well. The form and size of loaves found the best, were those baked in square tins, containing 2lbs each, supplied by the Commissioners for the use of emigrants. The oven contained twenty six tins and the time required for each batch was about two hours; the 12oz. of flour yielded about 14½oz. of bread. I have been thus particular in describing the system of baking adopted on board the Dirago because in all other ships the baking of soft bread has turned out quite a failure. The first requisite to ensure success is to appoint a man as baker who is properly qualified and who ought to prove his efficiency by baking good bread before the ship is despatched to sea; and sufficient space should be given so that his work may be done properly. The surgeon-superintendent suggests that one or two extra floor plates for the oven should be sent, as the first, from continual use, is burnt through before the ending of the voyage. I think that in all respects  the Dirago was the model of an emigrant ship.

 

1st February 1855

Emigrant

Arrived from Southampton on the 24th October, having been 105 days at sea. The casualties during the voyage were three births and two deaths; 313 souls were landed in the Colony. In consequence of serious charges having been made against the master, the first mate, surgeon-superintendent, and the matron of the ship, the Immigration Board was engaged during four days in investigating the various complaints. The Immigration Board found that the chief mate had been improperly familiar with one of the young women, and that the matron had done all in her power to insult and annoy the surgeon-superintendent, and had endeavoured to undermine his authority during the whole course of the voyage. His Excellency the Lieutenant-Governor was pleased so far to approve of the Report of the Board as to order the gratuities of first mate and of the matron to be withheld.

 

1st February 1855

Europa

Arrived from Liverpool on the 12th day of May, bringing to the colony 342 souls. Seven births and one death were the casualties at sea. The ship itself was spacious and well ventilated. She was commanded by Mr Wm. Ridley and Mr Wm. Rutter was the surgeon-superintendent-this being his third voyage in charge of emigrants. It appears that a mutiny amongst the sailors rendered it expedient for the master to touch at the Cape of Good Hope, when some of the ringleaders were punished. Complaints were made by some of the immigrants chiefly regarding an alleged short issue of water. This was investigated by the Immigration Board but they came to the conclusion there was no foundation for the charge, and they were of opinion that the surgeon-superintendent had done his duty very efficiently under very trying circumstances. The young women by this ship were most unsuitable.

 

12th July 1855

Flora

From Liverpool, arrived on the 7th April, bringing to the colony 310 souls. She was commanded by Mr James Withers, and Mr Herbert Wigan Swayne was the surgeon-superintendent, to both of whom credit is due for the good order and cleanliness in which the ship arrived; she was well lighted and ventilated. Seven births and seven deaths occurred at sea.

 

12th July 1855

Grand Trianon

Arrived on the 9th June, with 360 immigrants-226 were young women of whom far the greater number were of a class not likely to find ready employment. Four births and one death occurred at sea. The Grand Trianon was commanded by Mr Alfred Hayes, who gave hearty support and assistance to the surgeon-superintendent, Mr Charles Kitching in the management of the people. The immigrants expressed themselves most grateful for the treatment they had received.

 

12th July 1855

Isle of Thanet

Arrived from Plymouth on the 24th October, after a passage of 90 days. Two births and two deaths, both of children, occurred at sea, There were 233 immigrants landed in the Colony. The Isle of Thanet arrived in excellent order and the general management and discipline was most judicious.

 

1st February 1855

James Fernie

Arrived from Liverpool on the 16th of September, having been 91 days at sea. Thirty deaths and three births were the casualties. 349 immigrants were landed in the Colony. This ship left Liverpool while cholera was prevailing in England, and a few days after sailing the disease broke out and 22 emigrants died in consequence. In some cases the disease assumed its most malignant form; fatal collapse occurring without premonitory symptoms. The last death from cholera took place on the 19th September, when the ship was in latitude 8 north. I think that the surgeon-superintendent used every means which  professional knowledge could suggest, not only for the treatment of the disease while it existed, but also to prevent it spreading on board.

 

1st February 1855

John Banks

Arrived on the 28th May, from Plymouth, bringing to the colony 292 souls. Six births and three deaths were the casualties at sea. he ship arrived in very good order. She was commanded by Mr James Walker. Dr. Robt. Thos. McCowan was the surgeon-superintendent

 

12th July 1855

Lady Macdonald

Arrived from Plymouth on the 7th of April with 282 immigrants. She was commanded by Mr Henry Biles, and Mr John Black was the surgeon-superintendent. Seven deaths and five births occurred during the voyage. The immigrants by this vessel were well selected and found ready employment. A great proportion were miners from Cornwall and agricultural laborers from the southern and western counties of England; selected chiefly by Mr Wilcocks, the agent for the Commissioners. A few persons arrived by this ship aided by the funds of Highland and Island Society of Scotland and were selected by the Rev. Otto Trevelyan from among his own parishioners. All persons by this ship seem to have found ready employment, as all were finally disembarked several days before the lay days of the ship had expired.

 

12th July 1855

lismoyne

Arrived from Southampton on the 22nd August with 215 souls. She was commanded by Mr Henry King and Mr J S Millner was the Surgeon-Superintendent. 5 births and 2 deaths were the casualties before final disembarkation. This ship also arrived in good order-contentment prevailed on board; but as usual, the majority of the single women were selected from a most ineligible class of persons.

25th Oct 1855

Lord of the Isles

Arrived from Southampton on the 2nd December, after a passage of ninety five days. Twelve deaths and two births were the casualties at sea. In consequence of several complaints having been made against the surgeon-superintendent, the Immigration Board sent to enquire into the circumstance. After investigating the complaints, the Board were of opinion that the surgeon-superintendent had greatly neglected his duty in not attending to the cleanliness of the ship, and mustering of the people according to his printed regulations-that, consequently filth and vermin prevailed among the people. The Board recommended that the gratuity of the surgeon should be reduced from 10s. to 7s 6d. on each immigrant landed alive; and further, the Board, considering the surgeon quite incompetent, recommended that he should not again be entrusted with the charge of an emigrant ship. His Excellency the Officer Administrating the Government was pleased to ratify and confirm the recommendation of the Board; and further to direct that a copy of the report should be forwarded to the Colonial Land and Emigration Commissioners. In this ship there were five deaths from malignant cholera; but, as in the case  of the James Fernie, the disease ceased as soon as the ship had left the latitudes where cholera was epidemic.

 

1st February 1855

Lord Raglan

Arrived from Plymouth on the 23rd October, having been 99 days at sea. Six births and four deaths occurred at sea, and 372 souls were landed in the Colony. It was very evident at the first visit to the ship, that the surgeon-superintendent was totally unfitted for such a charge, and could not maintain regularity or discipline. No complaints, however, were made either against the surgeon or the officers of the ship, with the exception of a charge made by the surgeon-superintendent against the chief officer for familiarity with one of the single girls. However, on a perusal of the surgeon’s journal, charges of such a serious character were there entered against the master and officers of the ship, that it was considered necessary that these circumstances should be carefully investigated. The Immigration Board sat three successive days investigating the matter, when it appeared to them, with the exception of a complaint against the first officer, that all the other grave charges in the surgeon’s journal were utterly devoid of fact and without foundation. The charge against the first mate, otherwise a very efficient officer, was considered to be proved in so far as he had paid marked attention to one of the single girls. It was clearly shown that these attentions were with the entire concurrence of the father and mother of the young woman, were honorable in their motive, and devoid of the slightest approach to indecorum. The board were of opinion that such intimacies of the officers with the single women should not be allowed to exist on board ship; as they tended to show a bad example to the crew, and were otherwise calculated to undermine the discipline, and interfere with the authority of the surgeon-superintendent. The Board gave it as their opinion, that had it not been for the energy of the master and officers of the Lord Raglan, that the surgeon could not have maintained anything like discipline on board; that he was quite unfit to manage an emigrant ship, and that he ought not to be again entrusted with such a charge. His Excellency the Lieutenant-Governor was pleased so far to approve the Report of the Immigration Board, (a copy of which His Excellency directed to be sent to the Commissioners,) and at the same time to represent to them the advisableness of making known to all officers of emigrant ships, that a penalty will be attached to them if they pay particular attention to any female emigrant on board, even though such attentions may be perfectly innocent.

 

1st February 1855

Magdalena

Sailed from Plymouth on the 11th October and arrived on the 16th January, having been ninety eight days at sea. She landed in the Colony 326 souls. Four deaths and six births occurred before disembarkation. There were seventy nine young women on board, almost all of whom were Irish. The people were brought out in very good order.

 

3rd May 1855

Mallard

Arrived on the 25th April with 217 souls. Six deaths and two births were the casualties before final disembarkation. In consequence of several complaints having been made, the Immigration Board was summoned to investigate the circumstances. It was in their opinion, clearly proved that the surgeon had neglected his duty, both in the proper treatment of the sick, and in not enforcing the proper issue of provisions, especially to young children. The mortality in emigrant ships takes place chiefly among very young children; and it being supposed that the kind of diet on shipboard had an important effect on their health, the Commissioners took great trouble in procuring the opinion of many eminent physicians on the kind of diet best suited for children between the ages of four months and two years old. In consequence of their advice, the following dietary was ordered and made a stipulation in the charter-party ‘Children between four months and two years old are to be allowed three pints of water and a quarter of a pint of milk daily; also three ounces of preserved soup and four ounces of oatmeal, eight ounces of flour, four ounces of rice, and ten ounces of sugar weekly”. It was proved to the satisfaction of the Immigration Board that, for the first three weeks of the voyage, no issue of rations of any kind was made to children; that, after this, in consequence of complaints having been made, 4ozs. of rice, 6 ozs. of flour, and 8ozs. of sugar, with one gill of milk were issued weekly to each child till within three weeks before arrival, when the proper quantities were given. When there is neglect in the issue of food to adults, loud complaints soon attract attention to the grievance; children suffer and are silent. It may be that the parents are not aware of the provision which is made by the charter-party for the young; and if complaints are not made, it is assumed by those who neglect their duty that there is no grievance. Such is not the view of the Immigration Board is disposed to take of the case. The issue of the proper stipulated provisions to children is regarded by the Board as most important, not only for the proper nourishment, but for the health and life of the children. The Board regard the stipulation of the charter party as so express that they consider that the neglect of the master of the ship to issue these rations regularly, vitiates the charter party and involves the forfeiture of the payment of freight. They consider that it is the duty of the surgeon-superintendent to take care that the stipulations of the charter party are in all respects fulfilled-that the rations are issued regularly and in proper quantity ; and it is the opinion of the Board that where this is not done the surgeon-superintendent has neglected his duty. Several complaints were made against the surgeon-superintendent for neglect of medical treatment. Such complaints are easily investigated. he printed instructions to surgeons-superintendent direct a distinct medical journal to be kept, in which is to be noted “the day on which each patient is entered for treatment, and on what day discharged-whether cured, transferred to other hands, or dead; stating also the nature of the disease and the method of treatment.” When a surgeon-superintendent neglects to keep such a journal, he not only sets at naught his instructions, but deprives himself of the only means to disprove a charge of neglect. In this case, the surgeon-superintendent of the Mallard had not kept a medical journal as instructed. One man complained of personal violence used by the surgeon-superintendent and master of the ship. It appears that this man, being at the time a constable, had got into some personal altercation with the surgeon-superintendent, whom he threatened to report on arrival. The surgeon and master considering it necessary to “enforce discipline” ordered this man to be put in irons. The emigrants who were then at dinner, hearing of this, rose in a body and demanded his instant release, and he was accordingly set at liberty. This occurred about three weeks after sailing. No man complains of having been put in irons after this, but the “discipline” which it was found impossible to enforce upon the men, was more successfully tried upon the women. One young woman was confined in the bath-room for three hours, in iron handcuffs; another was confined in this state for thirty six hours. The Board state that not a shadow of reason existed for this exercise of arbitary power; that these were cases of gross personal violence to women, and that the master who could order, and the surgeon-superintendent who could sanction such proceedings, were both totally unfitted to be ever again entrusted with the charge of immigrants. The evidence given by the immigrants went to prove that the master of the ship was the active agent in these cases, that the surgeon was passive, but gave his sanction to the proceedings. The surgeon-superintendent takes upon himself the responsibility of having ordered the people to be put in irons. The Immigration Board recommended that the usual certificate that the immigrants had been well treated and the charter-party fulfilled, should not be signed-that the gratuity of the master, being two shillings on each immigrant landed alive, should be forfeited; and that one quarter of the gratuity to the surgeon-superintendent, being two shillings and sixpence on each immigrant landed alive, should be withheld. The certificate for return passage money being thus forfeited, a further penalty is inflicted of forty pounds (£40). The Board further recommended that the Commissioners should be requested to make a deduction from the payment of freight. His Excellency the Officer Administrating the Government was pleased to approve of the decision of the Board.

 

12th July 1855

Marion

Arrived from Liverpool on the 10th December with 384 immigrants, having been 106 days at sea; fifteen deaths and eight births occurred during the voyage. All the deaths were caused by a low kind of continued fever, which prevailed during the whole voyage, and attacked every one on board. It is difficult to account for the prevalence of fever, as the ship was very clean, and the surgeon-superintendent seems to have performed his duty with zeal and efficiency. All the deaths which occurred, were of infants or children not above twelve months old. The emigrants by this ship were of a class well-suited for the Colony, and seem to have been carefully selected.

 

1st February 1855

Nile

Left Plymouth on the 11th of November 1854. She arrived in Port Adelaide on the 18th February 1855, with 312 immigrants. Two deaths and eight births took place before disembarkation. In consequence of some complaints regarding the proper issue of stores, the Immigration Board assembled to investigate the matter. It appeared to the Board that certain irregularities had existed for a considerable time at sea, but the emigrants had not made their complaints known to the proper quarter to obtain redress at the time, the surgeon-superintendent and master of the ship being in ignorance for some time that such irregularities existed; but when made aware of the evils, they were immediately rectified. The Board considered that, had the surgeon-superintendent maintained proper supervision, such irregularities would have been discovered by him at an earlier period. A complaint was made by a woman who lost her child at sea, that this child had been neglected by the surgeon-superintendent. The Board found that no entry had been made in a medical journal of either the sickness or the treatment of this child. The Board, from the evidence adduced at this investigation and also from personal observation of the conduct of the surgeon-superintendent while he remained at Port Adelaide, were of the opinion that he was quite an unfit person to be again entrusted with the charge of emigrants, and that the certificate for return passage should be withheld. His Excellency The Officer Administering the Government was pleased to approve to approve of the recommendation of the Board. This ship arrived in a dirty state between decks. It is astonishing that very little sickness prevailed during the voyage, only one death having occurred at sea-the second, which was caused by a sudden attack of croup, taking place while the ship lay in Port Adelaide.

 

3rd May 1855

Norman

Left Southampton on the 2nd December, 1854 and arrived in Port Adelaide on the 7th March, 1855. No deaths nor births took place on the voyage. This has not occurred in a Government emigrant ship since the year 1850, when the barque British Empire arrived under the same circumstances. The Norman arrived in apparently very excellent order, the passage decks were clean and the people seemed a respectable and well selected class of persons. Unfortunately, however, there was a want of good feeling and mutual co-operation between the master and the surgeon-superintendent of the ship. The surgeon-superintendent refused to sign the certificate that the charter party had been fulfilled; and many complaints, and some of serious character, were made by the emigrants. In consequence of this, the Immigration Board assembled, and sat several days investigating the nature of the complaints; and, on the 23rd of March, presented to His Excellency their report. They found that two charges were clearly proved against the master of the ship. 1s: That there had been indecent familiarities with one or more of the single women; and 2nd-That the emigrants had been annoyed on crossing the line. The twenty-third clause of the charter party expressly stipulates that the emigrants shall not be molested on crossing the line; and that the master of the ship shall strictly prohibit and prevent, on the part of the crew or officers of the ship, any intercourse whatever with the female passengers on board. That any breach of either of those regulations will entail forfeiture of the passage money, and of any gratuities which might otherwise have been payable to the offenders. The Board stated that the familiarities of which the master in their opinion was guilty, though no attempt was made by his accusers to infer any criminal intention on his part, were yet of a nature, which if permitted in an emigrant ship, were calculated to lead to serious evil. The Board had also full proof given them that many of the emigrants had water pumped upon them by the fire engine on crossing the line; in consequence of which, many of them were thoroughly drenched, and some of the young women attributed a long continued illness to that cause. It was clearly proved that all this was done with the consent of the master. The Immigration Board gave it as their opinion, that, in the two respects above mentioned, the twenty third clause of the charter party had been vitiated; and that according to the stipulations therein contained, the passage money was forfeited, as well as the gratuity otherwise payable to the master of the ship. But, during the investigation, it appeared to the Board that there was a most unfortunate want of good feeling and cordial co-operation between the master and the surgeon of the ship. The Board could not discover that the surgeon gave warning to the master of the consequences which would follow; and though the master of the ship ought not to have required warning to avoid the two errors which he committed, yet the Board felt convinced, had fair warning been given, that on arrival no such clauses of complaint would have existed. They state, that it was painfully evident to them during the investigation that there was a vindictive feeling of the surgeon-superintendent towards the master of the ship, and that the surgeon had watched in silence the master compromising himself and the charter party, without entering a protest, or giving warning of an irregularity, that a repetition would be followed by a formal complaint to the Colonial Government. The Immigration Board recommended that the gratuity of the master of the ship should be withheld, which they hoped would act as a warning to him to avoid hereafter the errors which have now taken place; as in all other respects it appeared to the Board that he acted with kindness and consideration to the emigrants; and although, according to the strict letter of the charter-party, the passage money was forfeited, yet the board suggested to His Excellency, that the Colonial Land and Emigration Commissioners should be requested not to arrest the passage money, as the Board thought that the object sought to be obtained could be accomplished without such severity. His Excellency the Officer Administering the Government was pleased to approve of the report and of the suggestions therein contained and to direct that a copy should be forwarded to the Colonial Land and Emigration Commissioners.

 

3rd May 1855

Northern Light

Arrived from Liverpool on the 7th of April bringing to the Colony 445 souls. She was commanded by Mr Henry W Plain and Mr John T S Jolly was the surgeon-superintendent, this being his fourth voyage. It gives me pleasure to say that he performed his duties very efficiently. The immigrants, with the exception of some of the single women, seemed to me a well selected class of persons.

 

12th July 1855

Punjaub

Arrived from Southampton on the 25th May with 283 souls. There were five births and one death at sea. Mr Henry Lannigan, the surgeon-superintendent appears to have performed his duty efficiently, and Mr George Long, the master of the ship, gave him every facility and assistance

 

12th July 1855

Rodney

Sailed from Plymouth on the 21st November and arrived on the 20th February, bringing to the Colony 321 souls. Seven deaths and six births took place at sea. The ship arrived in very good order-harmony and contentment prevailed on board.

 

3rd May 1855

Rodney

Sailed from Plymouth on the 21st November, and arrived on the 20th February, bringing to the Colony 321 souls. Seven deaths and six births took place at sea. The ship arrived in very good order-harmony and contentment prevailed on board

 

3rd May 1855

Sea Park

Arrived from Plymouth on the 24th June, with 279 souls. One birth and no deaths occurred during the voyage. There were 164 young women, by far the greater number of whom were of a class totally unfitted for the requirements of the colony. The vessel was commanded by Mr Thomas Spedding, and Mr W.H. Pearce was surgeon-superintendent-to both of whom credit is due for the discipline, good order and contentment which prevailed on board.

 

12th July 1855

SOUTH SEA

Arrived from Plymouth on the 30th July, with 335 emigrants. She was commanded by Mr George Geere, and Mr James T Fraser was the Surgeon-Superintendent. Three births and four deaths occurred before disembarkation. This ship had a cargo of iron, which strained the vessel and caused leakage, which produced dampness between decks. There were 124 single women by this ship, the majority of whom are not likely to find ready employment in this Colony. The discipline and management of the ship reflected credit on all in charge

25th Oct 1855

Standard

Arrived from Plymouth on the 17th December, having been 90 days at sea; fourteen deaths and seven births were the casualties during the voyage, of the deaths two only were those of adults. Captain Blyth, the master of the ship, has bought emigrants on several occasions to South Australia, and has on every occasion endeared himself to the people by his kindness. The surgeon-superintendent acted very efficiently. The emigrants were well selected and were a very eligible class of persons.

 

1st February 1855

Star Queen

Arrived from Southampton on the 29th December, having made the voyage in ninety days. Ten deaths and eight births occurred at sea. The emigrants in this ship also were well selected. The matron, appointed in England, was superseded for incompetency and another appointed by the surgeon superintendent in her room. Diarrhoea prevailed to a considerable extent throughout the voyage. The ship as well as the bedding and persons of the emigrants were clean and tidy. One case of malignant cholera occurred the day after the ship sailed, and proved fatal in five hours. No other case of cholera is reported after the sailing of the ship, through dysentery and fever prevailed more or less throughout the voyage. The steward of the ship charges against the quantity of medical comforts laid in according to the charter party, twelve bottles of porter, five bottles of brandy and two bottles of wine, delivered and consumed by persons visiting the ship on Government account. This, if it be correct is a very improper mode of disposing of stores intended for the relief of the sick while at sea. The surgeon-superintendent suggests that the fore hatchway should be covered with close iron grating, locked down and that this hatchway should not be allowed as a means of  communication with the between decks. Many of the married women are disposed to have communication with the sailors and this fore hatchway affords far too ready a means of access to the forecastle, and from the forecastle to the emigrants’ apartments. This suggestion seems so proper that I think it ought to be immediately adopted. The main and after hatchway are sufficient for all necessary communication with the deck. The after ventilator, which communicates with the single women’s apartments, is used as a means of transmitting letters to and from the single girls. The remedy to this is simple and inexpensive; a fine wire grating at the centre of the shaft will prevent all communication, and not interfere in the slightest degree with the ventilation. So constant are the complaints made by the surgeon superintendents of the facilities thus afforded of communication with the single women, that it appears desirable that the evil should be immediately rectified…..(goes on to report  other improvements be made to vessels)

 

1st February 1855

Switzerland

Arrived on the 11th of September and landed in the Colony 262 souls. 2 deaths and 1 birth took place at sea. She was commanded by Mr Samuel Doherty and Mr Harrold Owen is the Surgeon-Superintendent. By this vessel a number of Highland families arrived, aided by the funds of the Highland and Island Emigration Society of Scotland. These people are generally valuable Colonists; their social and domestic habits and attachments lead them to remain together, so that inducements which would lure away others to the gold fields are powerless on the Highlander. The Colonists found that those who arrived by the Hercules were at that time a most eligible class of people. The circumstances of the Colony have changed since that time; but I believe, the pastoral settlers will willingly engage these families. The demand, however, for that class of persons is limited. The greater number of those who arrived by the Switzerland have been sent to Guichen Bay.

25th Oct 1855

Taymouth Castle

Arrived from Southampton on the 24th June, but I regret to state that about forty cases of small pox had occurred since leaving England. There were six cases on board when the ship arrived. The vessel was put in quarantine and all communication was forbidden; four of the Water Police were put on board with the sanction of Mr Drew, the Inspector of police. Directions were given by Captain Douglas as to the anchors and length of cable, so that she might ride in safety. Since that time the brig Clarendon has been hired with the sanction of His Excellency the Governor-in-Chief which, being moored at a proper distance from the Taymouth Castle will serve as a receiving ship. Those who were sick have been removed from the Taymouth Castle to this hulk and should any new cases occur in the Taymouth Castle, the patient will be immediately removed. A certain number of days having elapsed without any new case of sickness showing itself, arrangements will be made for allowing the ship to discharge, after such purification as may be thought necessary.

 

12th July 1855

Telegraph

Sailed from Southampton on the 23rd of October 1854 and arrived on the 23rd January 1855, with 427 immigrants. The casualties at sea were five deaths and eleven births. The immigrants by this ship were generally a most eligible class of persons. They arrived in excellent order under the medical superintendence of Mr Henry Scott, of Kensington, a gentleman well known in the colony. The ship was roomy and well ventilated.

 

3rd May 1855

thomas arbuthnot

Arrived on the 12th September with 253 Government emigrants. She was commanded by Mr Richard Martin, and Mr James O’Donnell was the Surgeon-Superintendent. Before the final disembarkation 2 births added to the numbers originally embarked. There were no deaths. There were by this ship 109 young women, generally of the same class as those with whom we have become so familiar. It gives me pleasure to state that this ship also was in good order and under good discipline.

25th Oct 1855

Velocity

Arrived on the 24th June, bringing to the colony 248 souls; of these 117 were young women, few of whom are likely to find employment. The casualties at sea were two births and one death. Mr Wm. Paul was the master and Mr Augustus Davis the surgeon-superintendent of the ship; the discipline and the general order of the people and the clean state of the ship reflect the greatest credit on those in charge. The ship itself is not particularly well adapted for emigrants. the ports are too near the water line, rendering them useless for ventilation.

 

12th July 1855

William Stevenson

Sailed from Liverpool on the 7th of November 1854 and arrived on the 1st February 1855. She landed in the Colony 283 souls. Five deaths and four births occurred at sea. The good management and order of the people and the cleanliness of the ship, reflected the greatest credit on Mr William Campbell, the surgeon superintendent. The people seemed generally well selected and they were contented and happy.

 

3rd May 1855

 

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