The Southern Cross Friday June 29 1860 pg 2 June 28 - Phoenix, ship, 986 tons, Robert Brown, for Liverpool. Passengers - Alexander Mr, Mrs and Miss Carl Phillip Craig George Crossland John Falkner James Feather William Fialty James Gerard John Graham Mr and Mrs and two children Grange Capt. Heather Mr Hodkinson William, Priscilla, Mary Anne, Margaret C. and Hodkinson John William Hudson Mr Hyatt Mr King Patrick and Mary Melchrist Mr (3) Moore William Moss Robert Moss William and Mrs Parker Mr Pilcher William M., Sarah, Isabella, Kitty and William Rabbit Patrick Roberts Rev. J. Robinson George Simons Ellen V. Smith John Steel Samuel Stewart Alex. Sutcliffe W.H. Sweeney Alfred, Anna, Bertha, Alice Kate, Adeline M., Ethelbert, Sweeney Geraldine, Frank Albert, Camilla Norah, Ernest S., Evelyn Walter & infant Symonds Master Taylor Richard, Anne, and Mary and infant Thomas Eliza Wylie James O.R. Strickland & Co., agents.
Southern Cross Tuesday 3rd July 1860 pg 2
Auckland. Sailed July 2 - Phoenix, for Liverpool. The Phoenix, after an ineffectual attempt to round the North Head on Sunday, came back to her anchorage, but finally succeeded in making a start yesterday forenoon.
William Hodkinson's account of voyage of the arrival of the "Phoenix" at the mouth of the Mersey. The "Phoenix" dragged her anchors and keeled over during a gale. Voyage from Auckland, New Zealand, to Liverpool, England in the full rigged ship Phoenix, 986 tons, of the White Star Line July 2nd 1860. Source: Merseyside Maritime Museum search Hodkinson.
Commander Capt. R. Brown 1st Mate Mr Venruss 2nd Mate Mr Combs Boatswain & two Carpenters Stewards, Butchers & Stewardess Chaplain Rev. J. Roberts Three cooks 2 of them Blacks One Sailmaker Surgeon Dr. Theorton Purser about 14 men before the mast
Oct. 9 Off Dunganon say 200 miles
Oct. 10. Off Rock light and landing
At easy seeing distance we have scarcely time to swallow our breakfast for fear if missing some important object. Where is no lack of Ships of all sizes from the yachts to the 3 deckers sailing
in every direction. 12 noon, Off Dungannon 3 pm we can see ?Taskes Island, where the famous ?Dasher Lighthouse stands on. The wind is from the north rather against us. we hope for a change or else no Liverpool for us to morrow, at 8 pm. Very dark blowing rather strong from N.W. passed the large floating lightship it looked like an illuminated ship red lights at end of yards, mast top, bows & stern, we passed her at a quick rate they should so hailed us as they seen us at sea, giving us directions as to wind dir., we ____ a good look out I had lights burning at our bows. We got to bed in good time tired with the day's achievements.
Oct. 10th. We arose early & got breakfast over so that we could look about us but the weather was not very favourable for seeing fast, for the drizzly rain had come again & the wind not being fair we were beating up the channel that is tacking, about, about noon were near Holyhead lighthouse, sometimes we could not see it when more than a mile distant on account of the rain, after dinner we took on board Pilot Mr ___ but I rather think he is not quite sober but perhaps he knows this business all afternoon we are sailing along the Welsh coast with a strong wind more fair on account of our course being more east. Ships and now as plentiful as blackberries & steam tugs too, they wanted £20 for taking us into Liverpool but as we have got such a good wind the captain would not engage them. there about 5 pm we entered the mouth of the Mersey and we could see the lights of the core of docks, the Pilot thought we had but anchor for the night and we let go the patent anchor opposite the Battery. The gale blew us on to the bank & as the wind a gale and the sea was high, we dragged our anchors, the tide being at the ebb. we soon touched the bottom with a heavy thuds and then she keeled on her side. The sailor had got beach but happily the wind abated or the ship would soon have gone to pieces.
Some of the passengers asked the 1st or 2nd mate where we were going and he said we were going to the devil. It was a & no fair game to sail all way from New Zealand & then be wrecked in the Mersey. The Captain wanted to signal for a tug to take the passengers to port but the sailors would not hear of it. They hailed a tug for all hands we got a good sized piece of pork to
wash & when roasted we did not feel inclined for eating, we stayed up all night approaching but its was very uncomfortable owing to vessel heeling on her side but as soon as this tide permitted on the morning we got a tug which brought us opposite the landing stage and took us passengers with children. I saw Mr Robinson at the door _____ of death, him if he could not manage to go with us, he shaked his head ......
THE AMAZING SAILING SWEENY'S
Searching for clues about greatgrandmother Geraldine Orde McGowan nee Sweeny who settled in Levuka, Fiji 1873, I went back in time to her mother, Ann Sweeny, Worthing, Sussex who produced sixteen children between 1841 and 1863. A family of that size would certainly be a handful on land much less at sea, but trawling through shipping records I found Ann Sweeny in 1860 loading nine of those children aged 2 years to 16 on board the Avalanche and setting sail for Auckland, NZ. Husband Alfred and two other children sailed out a few months earlier on the Jura. The big unsolved question is WHY? You see, by the 1861 English census they were all back home in Sussex. Long voyage short stay! Alfred and Bertha joined Auckland Mechanics Institute (now the Auckland Cities Libraries) on19 January 1860, three days after landing.
Outward journey passenger lists are as scarce as hens teeth, so when I found one for the Phoenix, Auckland to Liverpool 1860 I searched the names with little expectation, but another glance and there was a family with all the same children. It had to be and it was. I was able to detail their next sea voyages, all to Australia, thanks to transcribers. In 1866 seventeen year old Geraldine Orde Sweeny and sister Adeline Maude Sweeny aboard the Red Jacket to Melbourne. 1867, Bertha Sweeny aboard Atalanta.1868 Ann Sweeny and daughter Camilla Norah and son Frank Albert on board Southern Ocean.
The children all in their teens stayed on in Victoria while Ann returned to England in time for the 1871 census. How did Geraldine end up in Fiji? Did any of the kids over the years make the long voyage home to see their adventurous Mum? To find out I'll just have to keep searching. Robyn Mortimer Posted 30 December 2006.
1861 England Census. Worthing Sussex. Father Alfred 43 Mother Ann 39 Bertha 16 Alice Kate 15 Adeline Maude 13 Ethelbert 14 Geraldine Orde 11 Frank Albert 8 Camilla Norah 6 Ernest 4 Evelyn Walter 3 Madeline May 1 Five unnamed above died young, eldest Alfred Robert 18 elsewhere.