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New Zealand Bound

Gravesend to Lyttelton, New Zealand 1873

MEROPE, 1082 tons register, 16 years, A1, to Canterbury, New Zealand. Sailed from Gravesend on 3 August 1873 and arrived Lyttelton, Canterbury, N.Z., 31 October 1873 under command of Captain Williams. The Merope made eighteen voyages to New Zealand most of them to Lyttelton but only two under the command of Captain Williams.

Passenger list transcription pdf 219k Count 178 Government immigrants.
Reference: Family Search - browse -Canterbury -1873

Reference: 'Papers Past' - a NZ National Library website.  Press, 1 November 1873, Page 2
Oct. 31 — Merope, ship, Williams, from London. Passengers— Cabin :
Rev. H. B. Cocks, Mrs Cocks, and 7 children, Mrs H. Somers Cocks
Miss A. Hogg
Messrs H. Johnson, C. Davis, J. Cook, M. Lewin, C. Bolton, M. Smith, A. Giles, T. Loch, H. Dunsterville
Fore cabin
Mr and Mrs Shepherd, and 2 children, Miss Shepherd,
Mr Hill
Mr Cade
Mr Norman
Mr Greenlaw
and 170 Government immigrants.

Star 1 November 1873, Page 3 Shipping Items.
THE SHIP MEROPE FROM LONDON. This fine clipper vessel, under command of Capt Williams, formerly officer in the Queen Bee, was signalled yesterday afternoon, and arrived up to her anchorage, off Rhodes' Bay, at five o'clock. At 6 p.m. the Health Officer and Immigration Commissioners went off to the ship in the s.s. Moa, and found that there had been no sickness during the voyage, and the vessel was at once passed. From the ship's log we take the following particulars : — The vessel left Gravesend on Aug. 3, and the Start on the 9th ; weather fine, and light winds ; experienced very light north-east trade winds up to Sept. 6, when the equator was crossed ; the S.E. trades were light until Sept. 24, when the wind freshened up and good way was made. Penguin Rock, Crozet's Island, was sighted on Oct. 6 ; this was the only land seen. The southing was run down between 47 and 49., and the Snares were sighted on Wednesday, 29th ; had strong winds up the coast until arrival, accomplishing the passage in 89 days from land to land. The emigrants seem to be well suited to this colony. Dr Doyle, who was formerly surgeon in the Pleiades, is in charge of the immigrants. The distance run in consecutive days, from Sept. 24 to Oct. 18, was :— 275, 308, 280, 275, 262, 265, 250, 280, 244, 200, 232, 287, 227, 202, 270, 203, 224, 250, 202, 263, 246,250, 271, 204. 218. The following vessels were spoken : —
Sept. 9. Loch Urr, Liverpool to Sydney, 38 days out ;
Sept. 17, Lady Jocelyn, from London to Otago, and remained in company for two days :
Sept. 21, Green Jacket, San Francisco to Liverpool, 84 days out, 31 deg 06 mm S, 24 mm 03 W ;
Sept. 24, County Forfar, Glasgow to Calcutta, 36 deg 29 mm S, 16 deg 46 mm W.

The following address was presented to Captain Williams, signed by the passengers and immigrants : — " We, the undersigned, passengers by the ship Merope desire to express to you our thanks for the great kindness you have shewn, and the care you have taken of us during our voyage to New Zealand. We also wish to express our satisfaction at the skilful way in which you and your able officers have navigated the ship. With deep feelings of gratitude, and with every wish for your future welfare and prosperity, we bid you a kindly farewell. We wish you to convey to the Surgeon-superintendent, Dr. Doyle, Mr Beale, and Mr Bowling, officers of the ship, our thanks and best wishes for their future prosperity."

"To the Passengers and Immigrants — " I thank you heartily for the very marked proof of your good feeling to me, at the same time I must confess I have done nothing to deserve such a high testimonial, and I cannot help feeling that I am to a great extent reaping the harvest of other people's labour. We have certainly been blessed with a fine and prosperous voyage, although rather a long one, but many things have been organised and carried out to change the monotony of the voyage, and I should like to take this opportunity of expressing my thanks (feeling sure you will all join with me) to Mr Cocks, who has been the main spring in carrying on all. Where would our paper have been, and our concerts ? and, more than all, where would our Sunday services have been ? Simply nowhere. So that, whilst thanking you heartily for your generous expressions towards me, I should like, at the same time, to direct your good feelings into the right channel. lam desired by the Surgeon-Superintendent and the officers, to convey their best thanks to you, and I wish you every success and my best thanks. — Edmund Williams."

Report by Surgeon of Ship Merope
During the voyage we had fine weather; most of the way the weather was cold and bracing. Health prevailed all the time/ I look upon the arrangements provided for the emigrants as being nearly perfect. Perhaps the dietary scale of the children would be improved if preserved eggs were substituted for fresh; for the latter will not keep and are consequently of no use. Then, again, the cheese put on board does not keep, and is therefore of no use; this might be remedied by putting on board cheese of a harder and drier kind. To this I have nothing to add, except that I would suggest, that whoever is appointed a matron should not have a husband on board,, because it leads to all sorts of confusion. I do not know that there is anything else I could suggest that would be an improvement on the present arrangements.
P. Doyle, M.D.
Surgeon-superintendent of the Ship "Merope."


Henry Bromly Cocks died 10 March 1894 at Amberley, at the age of 62. He came from Leigh, Worcester, England with his wife (nee Harriet Elizabeth Wodehouse) in 1862 on the Victoria to Lyttelton. Stayed one year in Christchurch went back to the old country then came out again for his health. He was inclined to TB.  In 1873 he again came out with his wife and seven children and a nurse (A Welsh lady named MariaWest, age 18, General Servant) in 1873 and was given the curate of Sydenham and and the Cashmere Hills. There was no vicarage so he built one himself and named the house "Burfield" on 60 acres. Another six children were born in N.Z. to
Harriet Elizabeth and Henry Bromley COCKS. Harriet died in 1920 at the age of 79.
1874 b. 26 Nov. Harriet Lydia Muriel Cocks
1876 Mary Milicent Cocks
1878 Charles Richard Cocks
1879 Catherine Agatha Cocks
1881 Monica Cocks
1882 Arthur Eustace Cocks

Lyttelton Times, 13 June 1863, Page 3
Departure of the Mermaid, Capt. Rose, for London. The White Star clipper ship Mermaid, left Port on the 19th May, with ft cargo consisting of 2959 bales of wool and 37 bales of skins, the declared value of which amounted to £73,400. Passengers in the saloon —
Mr and Mrs Waitt, 4 children and servant
Mr and Mrs John Bealey, 5 children and servant
Mr and Mrs Dodds, 4 children and servant
Rev Mr and Mrs Cocks, child and servant
Mr and Mrs Lee
Mrs DeBourbel
Mr and Mrs Benoit and child
Mr Gooch
Mr Trew
Mr LeBow
Mark Gresson.

Ada Wells nee Pike