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'Isle of Erin'

New Zealand Bound

The Isle of Erin, iron barque, 889 tons under the command of Captain Edwards, left Gravesend 2 June 1878 and arrived at Otago heads South Island New Zealand 14 Sept 1878. She was consigned to Messrs. Dalgety, Nichols and Co. and bought 8 passengers and 1300 tons of cargo. The ship experienced westerly winds through the Channel until reaching latitude 37 N then N.E. Trades until 16 June. The Trades were light and uncertain and gave out at latitude 10 N. She experienced doldrum weather until 2 July. She crossed the Equator on 4 July at longitude 28 W with S.E. Trades. The wind picked up on 23 July to a violent gale with heavy seas which broke on board and filled her decks. Twelve cases of acids were jettisoned as these had broken adrift from the lashings. The gales moderated on the 26 July backing to a westerly. She crossed the meridian of Greenwich on 1 Aug and rounded the Cape of Good Hope on 6 Aug. For 36 days she experienced strong gales from the N.W to S.W and averages 206 miles a day. She passed Tasmania 3 Sept., the Snares on 11 Sept. and reached the Heads at dawn Saturday 14 Sept. She was bought up to the anchorage off Carey Bay having been cleared by the Customs officials. Eight passengers.

2nd Cabin; Messrs. E Charlton, T. Green.
Steerage; Messrs. T. Holgate, J K. Pollglase, S Holgate, Ewart, Wormald, J. O’Connell.

Crew List: The Memorial University in Newfoundland, Canada has the crew list for the Isle of Erin. 

Information courtesy of Noel Welford. Source: Otago Daily Times 16 Sept 1878 with thanks to the Otago Settlers Museum. 

Arrival Account in the Otago Witness 21 September 1878 page 11

A letter to the editor appears in the New Zealand Genealogist July/Aug 1999 regarding The Isle of Erin and her only other voyage to NZ, the 1881 January arrival in Wellington from Greenock, Glasgow.   She was built in Glasgow in 1875 and was wrecked with all hands lost in 1908 off the North Ronaldsay (Orkney) coastline.

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1880s - New Zealand, a moral oasis in the social desert, climate, scenery, natural productions, large tracts of land uncultivated, - a second England to be peopled,- breathing time and breathing room afforded for our people for centuries to come.