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UK - NZ Resources

New Zealand Bound

Voyages and losses, check Lloyd's List
Description of a vessel, check Lloyd's Register of Shipping
Mariners website  Ships in UK Ports 1881 Census

Lloyd's Register - Register of Ships

Today Lloyd's Register undertakes shipbuilding research, issues shipbuilding rules, and surveys ships under construction and in service to ensure that they meet its standard and is an institution completely separate from the insurance market now officially known as the Corporation of Lloyd's foundered to supervise surveys of vessels and to publish Lloyd's Register of Shipping.  The concept of 'ship classification' originated in the eighteenth century, when the practice began of awarding different classes to ships according to their condition.  The Register Book is published annually, lists all seagoing merchant ships of over 100 tons gross. Annual volumes of Lloyd's Register run from 1 July through 30 June of the following calendar year.  Worldwide network of agencies gather the shipping information.  Family History Library has Lloyd's Register of British and Foreign Shipping. If you know the name of the ship and approximate year the LR may provide some details on the vessel, vessel's number and information on ports of embarkation and arrival.  The ship's official number is necessary if you want to search post 1854.  Ship's Muster Rolls and Agreements and Crew List (1747-1860) which are filed by ship's number. NMM database Manuscript Collection under Lloyd's for further details. The daily Lloyd's List of shipping news - shipping index reports movements of more than 12,000 vessels.

Most of the registers for Australian ports are now held by Australian Archives and the microfilm is available for reading at all their regional centres.  Some earlier registers, mostly pre-1856, are likely to be in State archives offices. Their purpose was to record details of owners, managers and mortgages not masters. AJCP have photocopied some Naval records in Kew. See Australian Joint Copying Project handbook part 7.

1902: Marine insurance, however, is the only kind of insurance officially recognised Members of Lloyd's, it should be explained, are divided into two classes � underwriters, who act as principals and accept risks, and brokers, who effect insurances with the underwriters on behalf of shipowners. An underwriter is required to deposit a large sum as guarantee � from �5000 upward, according to individual circumstances. It speaks well for Lloyd's that during the past four or five years there has not been a single failure. And it certainly is necessary that an underwriter should have his wits about him. The seaworthiness of the ship, the character of the owners, the standing and capacity ol the captain, the nature of the cargo � all these and many other considerations enter into the question of the value of the risk to be undertaken.

Taranaki Herald, 8 February 1900, Page 1
Gambling in ships
The five hundred odd " underwriters" of insurance agents (says the London " Daily Mail") who constitute the world's marine insurance office known as Lloyd's spend their lives playing a game of pitch and toss with the world's mercantile marine.
    The 40,000 dice with which the game is played include every build of merchantman, from the Oceanic to the 100-ton wallowing " tramp." The bare rules of the game are as simple as those governing pitch and toss ; yet so complex are many of the thousand and one influences to be taken into consideration before you make each move, a man must have the head of a Bismarck if he would make a fortune by insuring ships. Every ship on leaving port with a fresh cargo is insured in at least three different ways. Against total loss of both ship and cargo, accident to ship, and accident to cargo. As the anchor is being weighed a clerk is despatched to Lloyd's with a portfolio giving full particulars of the destination, nature of. cargo, name of captain of  ship, the amount of insurance wanted, and rate. No single " underwriter " ever takes the risk of insuring a whole ship. But before he decides whether he will take an eighth, sixth, or quater, he has to weigh the chances there against the ship returning to port, w ho rate wanted. Firstly, he recalls standing of the firm she belongs to ; whither it is unlucky. '
    Then he looks at the captain's name, and if his memory fails refers hurriedly to the " Captains' Register," a biographical dictionary of every captain, giving every detail concerning him, from the luck he has had to the number of children. Then the nature of the cargo in relation to the distance of the voyage and the destination. These being satisfactory, he notes the routes she is taking in relation to the weather, and whether the equinoctial gales are blowing or whether cyclones are expected. Then he runs over the political state of affairs.....
    Wherever you can smell the salt sea. you will find a Lloyd's agent with his telescope, telegraph, and flagstaff. On sighting any vessel he signals as to name, destination, and condition, and before she has had time to haul down her flags these facts concerning her are posted up at, Lloyd's. An underwriter is keeping an eye on a certain vessel on which has plunged to his full depth. Yet here is a telegram from the agent who ought to have reported sighting her during the night. "Large vessel gone to pieces off here. Name not known." Even then your grey-headed underwriter does not lose heart. Other ships are passing that very point. The one which carries his financial life or death may even now be in safe anchorage. It is in such circumstances that the gambling spirit wins.

Barriskill, D. T. comp., A Guide to the Lloyd's Marine Collection and Related Marine Sources at Guildhall Library, Guildhall Library Research Guide 7 (2nd ed.; London: Guildhall Library, 1994)

Blake, George 1893- Lloyd's Register of Shipping, 1760-1960 illustrated by David Knight. Lloyd's Register of Shipping (Firm : 1914- ) Published London : Lloyd's Register of Shipping, 1960. 194 p

Bloomfield, Valerie Resources for Australian and New Zealand studies : a guide to library holdings in the United Kingdom Australian Studies Centre, London, 1986. 284p ISBN: 0-7123-0122-4 NMM, Greenwich holding.

Campbell, Robert D. The ship's register : a history of British ship status and registration procedures including their adoption in New Zealand Wellington, N.Z. : Ministry of Transport, Marine Division, 1980. 73 p., [9] p. of plates

Classification societies / edited by Jonathan Lux ; foreword by Sir Roderick Macleod. London ; New York : Lloyd's of London Press in association with the International Bar Association, 1993. 132 p,  Ships-Inspection, rules for classification and construction.

Hall, Christopher A.  A Guide to the Lloyd's Marine Collection (1985)

Information Group
Lloyd's Register

100 Leadenhall Street
London EC3A 3BP
Tel: +44 (0) 171 709 9166
Fax: +44 (0) 171 488 4796
"The Library of Lloyd's Register of Shipping holds a complete run of Lloyd's Registers, the various registers of yachts (British and American), Registers of Ship Owners, Statistical Returns, plus records of ship building, Casualty Returns, and other unpublished sources such as the Wreck Books." Posted , Aug. 6, 1998 Emigration Ships List by Debbie Beavis

Information Section
Corporate Marketing Group
Lloyd s Register of Shipping
71 Fenchurch St.
London, EC3M 4BS

The Keeper
Lloyd's Marine Collection
Guildhall Library
London EC2P 2EJ
Tel: +44 (0) 171 606 3030
Fax: +44 (0) 171 600 3384
(Lloyd's List, Weekly Indexes, Voyage Record Cards, an excellent run of Lloyd's Registers, selection of Yacht register, Lloyd s Missing Vessel Records 1873-1954, Lloyd s War Loss Records-1st and 2nd World Wars, Lloyd s Marine Loss Records-1939-1970.. etc) A guild is a society of men with the same trade banded together to protect their members interest.

The Gauntlet, barque, whose pumps, while loading at Brisbane were rendered useless through the lead pipes having been eaten through by rats, a new regulation has been adopted by Lloyd's, under which it is required that all lead pipes used for pumping purposes on board ship shall be covered with zinc or iron in such a manner as to be effectual protection against the sharp teeth of the vermin.

The Timaru Herald 8 July 1886
Lloyds. "As an insurance association it is the centre of machinery for the collection and diffusion of mercantile intelligence it stands unrivalled, and together with its affiliated associations of Lloyd's Register and Salvage Association, it forms an enormous organisation, and knows no jealously but to meet the requirements of the public and to bring the great weight of an influential corporation to the aid of the preservation of life and property from the perils of the sea." Colonel Hozier

Letters from Home

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UK Resources & Sources

 Official Log Books

The Mercantile Marine Act of 1850 obliged masters to keep an official log book recording names and conduct of their crew, any births, illnesses and deaths on board, misconduct, punishments and desertions. The log books of foreign-going ships were handed in within 48 hours of arrival, of home trading ships, half-yearly.  Today

Official Log Books at National Library AUS
    Asterope (London - New Zealand) 1866-1867
    Black Eagle (Glasgow - Auckland) 1861-1863
    Indian Empire (Glasgow - Lyttelton, N.Z.) 1865-1866
    Nelson (Glasgow - New Zealand) 1863-1864
    Siam (London - Auckland) 1865-1866
    Tamana (Glasgow - New Zealand) 1867
    Victoria (London - New Zealand) 1861-1863
    Welsh Mariners

Tracing British Seamen & their ships
 Welsh mariners

Crew Agreements - Archives UK

1861-1938 The Public Record Office holds a 10% sample of crew agreements for each year, plus those for a number of famous ships. The remaining 10% for 1861, 1862 and years ending in '5' are held by the National Maritime Museum (Park Row, Greenwich, London SE10 9NF).  Researchers wishing to consult them must give at least one week's advance notice, citing the name and official number of the ship and the year the voyage ended.   A few crew agreements are held by local record offices. About 70%, are held by the Maritime History Archive, Memorial University of Newfoundland, St.John's, Newfoundland AIC 5S7, Canada and they have produced indexes to its holdings, covering the periods 1863-1913 and 1914-1938, arranged by official number. The official number of a vessel can be found by consulting the Mercantile Navy List or, after 1872/73, the Register of Ships.  Crew Agreements for foreign-going vessels were submitted at the end of the voyage, therefore it is this date which determines in which particular year a Crew Agreement is filed. LR does not hold any crew agreements. Lloyds Register notes the vessel's number, but the ships are listed in alphabetical order. Auckland City Libraries - Social Sciences Dept holds on fiche - a list of  Crew Lists and Agreements held at the Maritime History Archives, Memorial University of Newfoundland in a coded grid based on the vessels unique number.

LDS film : Agreements and crew lists of British merchant vessels, compiled at English sea ports, including names of ships and service records of crew members : with alphabetical and numerical index to ships, 1857-1860
Great Britain. Board of Trade. Mercantile Marine Department (Main Author) Microfilm of original records. Includes indexes. Publication: Ashridge Park, Hertford : Genealogical Society, 1970-1974 British Film  848097   Agreements & crew lists BT 98/Index + 1752 microfilm reels

Crewlists e.g. War Spirit

Maritime History Archive
Memorial University of Newfoundland
Tel:  709-737-8429
Fax:  709-737-3123

A large collection of crew lists and  agreements and official logs 1861-1938 are held at the Memorial University of Newfoundland.  If given the name of a vessel(s) vessel registration number, and an approximate year of interest they will search for a fee as they have a research and photocopying service. They cannot search for personal names. This also applies to the PRO, where there may also be crew lists of UK-registered vessels which operated in NZ. Refer to MHA web site for information on Crew Lists and Log Books.  These were originally held at PRO KEW.

An Index to the Agreements, Crew Lists and Official Logbooks of the British Empire, 1863-1912 1,610 pp, St. John's, Maritime History Archive, Memorial University of Newfoundland, 1992. 3 bound volumes. Sold out. This index is out of print and they do not intend to have more reprinted.  It is not a nominal index. It contains official numbers of vessels and the years for which the MHA have crew lists or log books available.  It is not a listing of vessel names or crew members.   It is a useful tool for researchers who have the official numbers of vessels and would like to know the years for which the MHA have crew agreements and log books.

Examples at MHA:
- Agreement and Account of Crew - Opawa voyage to NZ returning to UK 1879
- ss  Ngatoro, built for and operated by the Blackball Coal Coy of Greymouth, NZ, a collier. The Blackball Coal Coy was a London-owned, thus Ngatoro was initially UK-registered. Crew list for her maiden voyage (1910) at MHA
- Isle of Erin crew list

Auckland City Libraries - Social Sciences Dept holds on fiche - A list of  Crew Lists and Agreements held at the Maritime History Archives, Memorial University of Newfoundland, in a coded grid based on the vessels unique number.

Archives NZ, Wellington and other repositories e.g. Christchurch & Auckland City Libraries, have 'Journals of the House of Representatives'  online searchable
  The "minutes" of Parliament. The Journals are a daily summary of the proceedings of the Parliament of New Zealand without the debates. All debates in the House are recorded and checked and then published in 'Hansard', the official record of what has been said. 'Hansard' gives a verbatim report, edited to remove repetitions and redundancies. Many of the documents tabled in the House are reprinted in the annual Appendices to the Journals of the House of Representatives (AJHR). Copies of Hansard and the AJHR are available in major public libraries.

AJHR are in fact large books in their own right and don't 'appear' at the back of the Journals as we would normally expect to see an Appendix. APPENDICES TO THE JOURNALS : �Parliamentary papers.� Each year a number of papers are tabled in the New Zealand House of Representatives. These include reports of Government Departments and certain statutory bodies, a selection of international agreements and conventions involving New Zealand, Government financial statements, reports of commissions and Royal Commissions and reports of Parliamentary select committees.

*Numbering. The year relates to the year of the Parliamentary Session. In some years there was more than one session. * Each Parliamentary Paper is assigned a �shoulder number� which is printed on the top right-hand corner of each leaf, e.g. A9, B13, B13A etc. The same number is generally assigned to the same paper each year, thus the Budget is always B6. 
The General Election returns are E9
The Education Dept. annual report is E1. The shoulder numbers have been reassigned several times over the years.  

D3A 1892. pages 1 -18. Large list of Immigrants with unpaid Promissory Notes. 

Appendices do contain Reports from the Marine Department. (started out E then changed to G in 1870 and then to H in 1873)

1866 (E-3), 1867 (E-6), 1868 (E-6), 1869 (E-4), 1870-1871 (G-6), 1872 (G-30), 1873 (H-19A ), 1874 (H-22), 1875 (H-12A), 1876 (H-26), 1877 (H-29), 1878 (H-12), 1879 (H-10), 1880 (H-13), 1881 (H-27 ), 1882 (H-12), 1883 (H-15), 1884 Session II (H-6), 1885 (H-13), 1886 (H-24), 1887 Session II (H-4), 1888 (H-19), 1889 (H-31), 1890 (H-18), 1891 Session II (H-30), 1892 (H-29), 1893 (H-31), 1894 (H-18), 1895 (H-29), 1896-1905 (H-15), 1906 Session II (H-15), 1907 & 1908 (H-15), 1909 Session II (H-15), 1910 & 1911 (H-15), 1912 (H-15), 1913-1941 (H-15)

Contents include:

Masters, Mates & Engineers, Certificates of Competency, 1866-1921 Gives name, rank, class of certificate, date of issue.
Estates of Deceased Seamen, 1887-1941. Gives name, balance to credit of estate, amount received, amount paid
Wrecks & Casualties to Shipping, 1866-1929, 1936-1939. Details include date, name of vessel, description, # of lives lost, decision of inquiry and name of master. 
Pilot Licenses, 1866, Gives name, place, date of issue.
Pilotage Exemption Certificates, 1867-1879. Gives name of master, name of vessel, ports included. 
River Steamers, Masters & Engineers, Certificates of Competency, 1876-1880. Gives name, rank, date of issue.
Colonial Pilot Licences, 1899-1921. Gives date of issue, name, port of residence.
Adjusters of Compasses Licences, 1899-1921 Gives date of issue, name, address.
Accidents to Seamen, 1902-1919. gives date, name of vessel, name of person, nature of injury, particulars of accident.
Amounts paid to Sick & Disabled Seamen, 1906-1919. gives name of seaman, name of vessel, nature of injury, amount paid.
Accidents to Waterside Workers, 1908-1919. Gives date, port, name nature of injury, particulars of accident.
Boys who joined T. S. Amokura, 1909-1919, 1921. gives name, date of joining, date of discharge, occupation on discharge.
Prosecutions re Fish & Oysters, 1910-1913, 1915. Gives name, offence, fine imposed.
Convictions of Seamen, 1908-1919. Gives name, position held, ship, offence, date of conviction, penalty.

The National Maritime Museum
Park Row
London SE10 9NF
Tel: +44 (0) 181 858 4422
Fax: +44 (0) 181 312 6632
The National Maritime Museum is another useful source of historical shipping information. National repository for books, models, plans, photographs, paintings etc. covering maritime history from the earliest times.  Collections include Lloyd's Registers, atlases, shipping company records, historical journals and cover merchant journals and cover merchant marine and naval history. They do not accept email enquiries.  Replies are not prompt and fees are involved.
1901 England Census 
Name: Charles Acton 
Age: 29 
Estimated birth year: abt 1872 
Relation: Liset R N R 
Where born: Timaru, New Zealand 
Civil parish: Vessels 
Town: Chatham Dockyard 
County/Island: Kent England 
Source information: RG13/740 
Registration district: Medway, Gillingham 
ED, institution, or vessel: Perseus Folio: 35 

Name: Robert Coppell 
Age: 26 abt 1875 
Relation: Member Of Crew 
Where born: Lyttelton, New Zealand 
Civil parish: Vessels 
Town: Gibraltar 
County/Island: Royal Navy 
Country: England 
Source information: RG13/5328 
Registration district: Royal Navy at Sea and in Ports Abroad 
Sub-registration district: RN Ships 
ED, institution, or vessel: Minerva 
Folio: 27 Page: 23

Name: William E White 
Age: 21 abt 1880 
Relation: Members Of Crew 
Where born: Auckland, New Zealand 
Civil parish: Vessels 
Town: Great Bitter Lake, Suez Canal, Egypt 
County/Island: Royal Navy 
Country: England 
Source information: RG13/5328 
Registration district: Royal Navy at Sea and in Ports Abroad 
Sub-registration district: RN Ships 
ED, institution, or vessel: Ophir 
Folio: 127 Page: 25 

Name: Albert W Hunter 
Age: 21 abt 1880 
Where born: Christchurch, New Zealand 
Civil parish: Vessels 
Town: Sydney 
County/Island: Royal Navy 
Country: England 
Source information: RG13/5332
Registration district: Royal Navy at Sea and in Ports Abroad 
Sub-registration district: RN Ships 
ED, institution, or vessel: Royal Arthur 
Folio: 93 Page: 15 

Name: Thomas G King
Age: 25 abt 1876 
Relation: Member Of Crew 
Where born: New Zealand 
Civil parish: Vessels 
Town: Aden 
County/Island: Royal Navy 
Country: England 
Source information: RG13/5333 
Registration district: Royal Navy at Sea and in Ports Abroad 
Sub-registration district: RN Ships 
ED, institution, or vessel: St George 
Folio: 13 Page: 17 
Name: George Lake
Age: 19 abt 1882 
Relation: Member Of Crew 
Where born: Caversham, New Zealand 
Civil parish: Vessels 
Town: Gibraltar 
County/Island: Royal Navy 
Country: England 
Source information: RG13/5328 
Registration district: Royal Navy at Sea and in Ports Abroad 
Sub-registration district: RN Ships 
ED, institution, or vessel: Niobe 
Folio: 75 Page: 30 

Name: Leo Lance 
Age: 25 abt 1876 
Relation: Member Of Crew 
Where born: Wellington, New Zealand 
Civil parish: Vessels 
Town: Malta 
County/Island: Royal Navy 
Country: England 
Source information: RG13/5335 
Registration district: Royal Navy at Sea and in Ports Abroad 
Sub-registration district: RN Ships 
ED, institution, or vessel: Victorious 
Folio: 63 Page: 30

Glasgow was a very busy passenger port. The port did carry a large volume of transmigrants (migrants passing through the UK en route for another country) and many of these migrants travelled originally through northern European ports to UK on "feeder ships", smaller vessels that did not make long ocean voyages. Many of them had arrived in Leith, Scotland but others had arrived at ports in north east England e.g. Hull and were shipped out through Glasgow.  Passengers sailing from Hamburg could choose the indirect route or direct route. Indirect was through Hull, Liverpool, Southampton, Rotterdam etc. and was cheaper.  Hamburg records are intact but Bremen records were destroyed until 1909. Norwegian emigrants often took the train from Hull to Liverpool to embark on the larger ships. Great Central Railway and Migration.

Scottish emigrants even when they lived quite near to a suitable port in fact often travelled south by train and picked up one of the larger, faster and perhaps more comfortable ships leaving from London. Often passengers disembarked at ports en route for Australia.  Passenger lists exist in Australia and New Zealand showing arrivals.  Many of them remained on board if the ship continued its passage as far as New Zealand and many of the New Zealand bound ships did call in to Australian ports.  Departure lists from the UK are rare before 1890. There are few resources for voluntary emigrants.

British Parliamentary Papers (1856 XXIV [2089], 402) : "Return of Ships and Emigrants despatched by Public Funds to New Zealand in 1854 and 1855." They were:
Gipsy, sailed 3 July 1854 with 112 passengers and 1 died on the voyage. (37 M, 32 F, children: 20 M, 23 F)
Josephine Willis, sailed on 7 Oct 1854 with 77 on board and no deaths on voyage. (25 M, 28 F, children: 12 M, 12 F)
Simiah, sailed on 27 Oct 1854 with 1 male passenger and no deaths on voyage.
Merchantman, sailed 23 May 1855 with 6 passengers and 1 death on the voyage. (2 M and 3 F with 1 M child)

Scottish Links

Irish Links

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Departure Ports for Emigrants ships heading for New Zealand

London, England - outport Gravesend
Liverpool Harbour Marjorie P. Kohli site. 1870s. Merseyside, England
Glasgow, Scotland - outport Greenock, Renfrew Co. on the south shore of the Firth of Clyde, about 22 miles (40km) west from Glasgow by rail.
Plymouth, England. Located on the s. Devon coast. Steamers use to leave here regularly for NZ.
Deal, England. East Kent.
Portsmouth, located on the s. coast of England.
Bristol located on the w. coast of England at the head of the Severn Estuary that runs into the Bristol Channel. The Port Authority railway lines connect with the main railroads to all parts of England and Scotland. Outport Avonmouth.

Southampton, England. Near the English Channel, 123km from London.
Leith - outport for Edinburg, Scotland. Located at the s. bank of the Firth of Forth on the e. coast of Scotland
Queenstown, Ireland (1849 -1922) renamed to Cobh, subport of Cork which is the principal port on the s. coast of Ireland being a natural sheltered deepwater harbour.
Hamburg, Germany. Situated on the River Elbe 121km from the open sea.

In the 1860s a family from Scotland probably would travel by coastal steamer to London, to catch a larger sailing ship to the antipodes. Rail travel possible then, but steamer is down the coast is likely.

Passenger Acts

The 1835 Passenger Act was introduced by the British government to eliminate some of the evils associated with the transport of emigrants. Provisions included sufficient provisions to be carried, a surgeon was appointed if there was than one-hundred or more passengers on board.  A list giving the name, age and occupation of each passenger was to be given to the chief custom officer before sailing.  Should the ship not sail on the day arranged for, the emigrants had to be provided for or an allowance of a shilling per day given each day.  Emigrants had the privilege of remaining onboard for forty-eight hours after reaching the port of landing.  Provisions was made for inspecting the ship as to her seaworthiness.  The amount of space to be provided per passenger was laid down.  Emigration officers were appointed to superintend the embarkation of emigrants at British ports to protect the emigrants against carelessness and greed of shipmasters.  In 1837 they were stationed at these ten ports. London, Liverpool, Bristol, Leith (Scotland), Greenock, Dublin, Cork, Limerick, Belfast and Sligo. Reference: Emigration from the British Isles W.A. Carrothers 1929. 1966.  For more details on Passenger Acts see the "Strathallan" page last section and the "Isabella Hercus" page for a list of the food and water provisions.

"Liverpool on her stern and bound to go"
A truism amongst seamen in the 1850s referring to speedy passages


What historical documents can you expect to find for a ship?
Building plans  (elevation plans and deck plans, rigging plans)- hull number
Offset table - set of horizontal and vertical calculations determining the lines of her hull. found in the building company's Offset Book, listed under hull number.
List of Charges
Builder's Certificate - notes tonnage, dimensions, number of decks and masts, construction materials and fittings, the amount of iron used, wages paid.
Certificate of British Registry
Official Log
Survey Reports by Lloyd's Surveyor's
Lloyd's List of Movements and Causalities
Lloyd's Register of Ship and Shipping 
Newspaper reports - launching, shipping news, shipping line advertisements, 
Passenger lists, passenger contract ticket (if applicable)

Crew Agreements - required by law, sanctioned by the Board of Trade and completing a crew agreement was one of the requirements for clearance to leave port. Appended to each agreement is a copy of the "Regulations from Maintaining Discipline" as outlined by the Merchant  Shipping' details the responsibility of the master of the vessel and the crew as well as punishable offences and there penalties. Unsigned copies had to be available for review by the crew. Someone read and explain the agreement before a seaman could sign as many seamen were illiterate and many placed an "x" and someone else printed in their full name. About 8 pages in the 1870s. At the end of the voyage when the crew is discharged the form is completed, certified and handed over to the port superintendent.

Ships' crew lists. Schedule G was a list of crew members (including Apprentices) on sailing for foreign-going voyages, giving their ticket numbers, full names, wages, last ship. 

Names and distinguishing Number of the REGISTER TICKETS, of the CREW  now serving on board the ____ of the Port of ____ of the burden of____ Tons, on taking departure from the Port of ____ in the UNITED KINGDOM, bound on a Voyage to____.  Name, Capacity, Number of Register Ticket.

Agreement for Foreign Going Ship, signed in 1856, states the crew are to be served daily 1lb bread, 1.5 lb beef, 1.5 lb pork, half lb flour, third pint peas, 3 qrts water, 2 oz sugar, half oz tea, half oz coffee and rice is to be served once a week. No Spirits are allowed, and the Captain may provide substitutes.
She carried 12 Crew - Mate, 2nd Mate, 3rd Mate, 4th Mate, Carpenter, Steward, Cook, Passenger's Cook, Blacksmith and Sailmaker. They were assisted by 27 Able Bodied Seamen and 11 Other Souls. The Agreement gives all the names, ages, places born, and wages they were engaged at.

The Agreement signed was on a voyage from London to Melbourne, thence if requested to any other Ports and Places in the Indian, China Seas, Straits, North and South pacific Oceans, and Australian Colonies for any period not exceeding two years and back to the final Port of Discharge in the United Kingdom or Continent of Europe.

Certificate of Discharge, Certificate of Character

Clip Crew List Index Project
Crew Lists and Articles
Crew Lists


There is a crew list and log book for a 'Light Brigade', official number 45775, of London, nrt 1244, at the Maritime History Archive of the Memorial University, Newfoundland, for a voyage ending in 1864.  This ship sailed from Calcutta on 7th November 1863 to Rangoon. At both ports, British troops were picked up to bring to New Zealand .She sailed from Rangoon on 1st December for Auckland, arriving about 18th January 1864. The ship's official number was found by typing the name into the search engine of the Mariner's List website. The existence of the crew list was found by typing the official number into the MHA search engine. The minimum charge for a search is 35 Canadian dollars, plus copying and postage.

Ships outside of British territorial limits were not enumerated for the census.

The Star Saturday 16th June 1900
A1 at Lloyd's
Lloyd's is the headquarters of all engaged in marine insurance and business associated with shipping matters. It is the London Society of Underwriters. Lloyd's coffee-house, on Turner Street, kept by Edward Lloyd, became the headquarters the headquarters of those engaged in marine insurance. In 1692 he removed his house to the corner of Lombard and Abchurch Lane. With venturous energy he went so far as to produce, in 1696, a news sheet called "Lloyd's News," This paper was published three times a week. In 1721 the "Lloyd's News" made way for "Lloyd's List" which has appeared uninterruptedly from that time to the present day. Brokers and underwriter engaged in legitimate business formed themselves into an Association in 1770. In 1773 removed their headquarters to the Royal Exchange, while still retaining the name 'Lloyd's." 

"Lloyd's" Register of Shipping, issued annually in July, is a prodigious work, containing particulars of every ship in the United Kingdom. This book contains the names, classes and detailed information concerning the ships classed by Lloyd's Register and the British Corporation Register.  Appendix to Lloyd's Register Book is issued in January.  This volume contains list of changes of ships names, company names, ships of 500 tons arranged nationality in tonnage divisions, deadweight, capacity, speed &c. of cargo and tankers. Statistical tables, list of ship builders with existing ships they have built, marine engine builders and boiler makers, dry and wet docks, telegraphic address and codes used by firms, Marine, Insurance Companies. While its "Captain Register" consist of a biographical dictionary of all the 24,000 certificated commanders of the British mercantile marine.

Lloyd's does not insure as a body, the business is done by individual members. These members split the risk. The names of these members are indorsed on the policy, together with the amount of risk undertaken. These signatures are written on the policy one under the other - hence the term "underwriter." In a policy for 100,000 there is a long column of sixty-nine names underwritten - the amount of risk taken by each individual varying from 2000 to 500. In case of all the ships had been wrecked, and cargoes become total losses, no single individual would have to pay more than the value underwritten by him. Probably some of these members again underwrote their shares with other members, until the risk had become very small and diffused.

In classifying and registering ships Lloyd's uses various marks or signs; thus ships in the first class are denoted by the mark A1, the first letter referring to the quality of the ship, and the first numeral to that of the equipment. wooden ships are classed A1 when they are sound and well fitted, and they are subject to obtain annual surveys; so only the best vessels are classed A1, and they only retain this so long as they are in a fit and efficient condition.

The figure 1 denotes that the vessel is well found with stores. Vessels subject to an annual survey and to half-time surveys are classed A1 in red
Vessels fit to carry perishable cargoes on short voyages are classed AE
Those fit only for the conveyance of cargo not subject to sea damage are classed E

iron ships are classed A1 with a prefix as 100A1, 90A1 and also *Aa1, Ab1 and Ac1, the asterisk before the letter signifies that the vessel was built of heavier plating than the rules require
a Maltese cross signifies that the vessel was built under special survey

Lloyd's also has abbreviations for wood of which ships are built such as
A ash
BB black birch
Bh beech
Cha chestnut
E elm and so forth

An antonym "a-at Lloyd's" is used by to denote that the vessel is not in good order., and is scarcely desired by the owner of the vessel.

Southern Cross, 24 August 1874 page 3
The United States barque William Gifford, having been purchased by Mr Bouman, of Lyttelton, has now hoisted the British flag. She has been re-measured by the Custom authorities, and will be registered at this port, Auckland. She sailed on the 20th under the command of Captain Bishop, for Newcastle, N.S.W. She has been re-classed in German Lloyds, and has been placed on the first letter for four years. A survey had been previously held by Captain Anderson, local surveyor for German Lloyds. It was considered necessary that the vessel should receive a fresh classification here after being purchased from a foreign firm. She was previously classed A1 for three years in American Lloyds. We understand that English Lloyds will not classify a vessel in the colony.
Port of Auckland

Men of Invention and Industry
Beginnings of English Ship Building
Practical introducer of the Screw Propeller
Inventor of the Marine Chronometer

Crew Culture by Neill Atkinson. Published by Te Papa Press. ISBN 0909010757.

A sailor was in the Royal Navy,
A seaman or mariner was in the merchant navy.

New Great Britain from London to Bluff 1863.
After tea I had a talk with one of the Sailors he told me he was a Norwegian belonging to Bergen had been 3 years in the English Trades and had gone the same route before. After engaging to work with this Ship he got no wages only 1/- per week but his passage free and he would claim his discharge on being 48 hours in any port of New Zealand. Their was Several others of the Sailors on the same footing. Some of them were going to the Diggins.

Otago Witness Wednesday 28 November 1900 page 54 c2
A full rigged-ship, 14 miles N.E. of the heads, was reported from the signal station and the tug was despatched to tender her. She proved to be the Greta, from Glasgow, consigned to Messrs Murray. Roberts and Co., of this city.  She is a fine looking iron ship of 1115 tons net register, built at Whitehaven in 1874, and owned by Messrs W. Lowden and Co., of Liverpool, and is classed 100 A1 at Lloyd's. She is on her first passage to the colonies. She brings 1900 tons of dead-weight cargo, of which the bulk, 1700 tons, is for Dunedin, and the remaining 200 tons for Wellington. On her arrival it was found that she had six foreigners in her ship's company, and these men were called aft to the cabin and the provisions of the Undesirable Immigrants Act explained to them by Captain Grey, the surveyor of customs, at whose desire they each copied papers in their native language very proficiently, and satisfying the requirements of the act, they were passed in on the ship's papers.

The Greta. Otago Witness Jan 2 1901 page 46.

Timaru Herald Saturday 15 October 1881 pg2
The Peninsular and Oriental Steam Navigation Company have finally decided to embark their outgoing passengers at Gravesend, and on and after the 4th October the departures from Southampton will altogether cease. The Rome, which sails on the day mentioned, will be the first steamer by the new route. Arrangements are made with the London, Tilbury and Southend Railway for the despatch of a special train from the Liverpool street station to Tilbury at 11 a.m. on Tuesdays. From thence a river steamer will be chartered to convey passengers to the Company's vessels. The homeward-bound steamers will call at Plymouth for the convenience of passengers wishing to leave the ship at that port.

Otago Witness June 25 1883 pg15
The loss of the Waitara. Collided with the Hurunui in the Channel. 20 lives lost. Both were heading for New Zealand. [A direct result of this loss was that passenger embarkation was shifted to Plymouth.]

'Food for genealogist - Fiche and Ships'