Part of the Acorn Archive

Hearts of Oak



Captain J L Vivian Millett

The Ships – Page 2

The ships he mentions



Steamer 1574 grt; 292.1 ft x 39.3 ft x 19.7 ft

Built 1891 W Pickersgill & Sons, Sunderland

Owners : F O Pinkney

Master( 1893 ) : George Lewis

Fate Unknown



Steamer 1696 grt; 329.5 ft x 40 ft x 24.5 ft

Registered London

Built 1886 C S Swan & Hunter, Newcastle

Owners C C Barton

Master 1888 : C Child

Fate Unknown

J L Vivian Millett travelled on her November 1888


Timaru Herald April 4 1891

SS BAYLEY, 2607 tons, Alfred Childs, from London. The Tyser liner BAYLEY arrived off Timaru yesterday afternoon and was brought in by the PS MANA and berthed at the main wharf. The BAYLEY will take away 17,300 sheep and lamb, the largest cargo of frozen meat which has ever been put on board at this port. The BAYLEY left London on January 20th. Called in at Melbourne and Sydney and the Bluff.


Timaru Herald Wednesday 8 April 1891

The steamer BAYLEY completed loading yesterday afternoon,  and was taken out by the harbourmaster in the teeth of a strong north-east wind and dirty weather outlook. The BAYLEY anchored in the outer roads for the night, and will go on this morning to Lyttelton to coal for Home. 19,500 carcasses frozen mutton and lamb was put on board by two gangs of men working in about 19 hours, or at the rate of 1000 an hour, 5000 at each hatch.  This shipment is noteworthy too for the fact that the BAYLEY is the first steamer to complete her loading here, the hatches being filled with South Canterbury mutton and ice.



an old iron ship

Iron steamer 1,932 grt; 1,831 nrt; 2,600 dwt

243 ft x 38.5 ft x 30 ft

Built 1855 by Guilbert et fils, Nantes, France


For Compagnie Franco-Americaine de Nav (Gauthier Frères), Lyon

1859 Sold W.T. Jacobs, Liverpool; Renamed ACCRINGTON.

         Re-built as a full-rigged sailing ship.

The Capt and Chief Officer died on Monday 14th November 1859

Daily Post, Monday March 12th 1860

Frederick Carman, Steward on board the ship ACCRINGTON was examined before the borough magistrates charged with the wilful murder of Capt William Henderson Horner and Walter Bevan Cooper, Chief Officer of the ship, by poison. The case was unproven and Frederick Carman was freed, cleared of all charges. Captain Horner and Chief Office Cooper, however, were shown to be heavy drinkers and violent towards the crew.

1886 Sold Gracie, Beazely & Co, Liverpool.

1889 Sold Otto Banck & Johan Ingmarsson, Sweden.

         Swedish Registration No. 323 and Signal Letters HVBD.

1896 Broken up at Sölvesborg, Sweden.



699 grt; 141 ft x 33 ft x 22 ft; 2 deck; 18ft draft; Oak Ship

Built 1838 New York

Hull metalled Oct 1858

Owners Fisher Richards & Co.

Fate Unknown.



Steel steamer

Built August 1880  Earle's Shipbuilding Co., Hull, England

For the Royal Exchange Shipping Company Ltd (Monarch Line)

3,317 grt; 360 ft x 42.7 ft; straight bow, 1 funnel, 4 masts

Screw; 11 knots

40 x 1st and 1,000 x 3rd class passengers.

1887 Sold Allan Line; Renamed ASSYRIAN; Remeasured 3,970 grt

24th July 1901 Last voyage, Glasgow to Boston; and sold for scrap



Built 1881 by John Elder, Glasgow; 5,524 grt

For The Orient Line

120 x 1st, 130 x 2nd & 300 x 3rd class passengers.

18th Jan 1882 : Maiden voyage London via Suez to Melbourne and Sydney.

Soon developed a series of engine failures, leaving her to use sail.

11th Nov 1882 : Sank, at her coaling berth at Sydney

28th March 1883 : Refloated and temporarily repaired at Cockatoo Island.

Between 1883-4 she was refitted on the Clyde and in April 1884 was chartered to the Anchor Line and used on their Liverpool to New York route.

12th Nov 1884 Resumed London to Sydney sailings.

21st Nov 1902 Last voyage on this service; sold and scrapped, Genoa.



BLAIR ATHOL, a large well-found ship with a very young chief officer, whom I used to admire greatly for the smart way in which he did his work.

Sail Ship  A1 2 deck

Official Number 71654

Built  November 1874 at Greenock Glasgow

1,697 grt; 259.1 ft x 40 ft x 23.3 ft; 20 ft draft

Registered Port  Glasgow

1874 Master F Haines

1875 Owners Alexander Thomson & Co.

1885 Owners Thomson & Gray

Master : Captain Alexander Taylor


James Lister writes : I am the Grandson of Capt Henry Beeby Lister who was the last Captain of the BLAIR ATHOLE. Captain Alexander Taylor was the master of the Blair Athole but he died in Batavia  Java in 1892 after a long illness; My Grandfather was then appointed Captain by the company, Thomson & Gray of Glasgow. The Blair Athole left Pasaroeang, Java 29th February 1893 bound  for Vancouver  with Java sugar. She was lost with all hands in a storm  sometime after April/ May 1893.


Her "partner" BLACKWALL was lost also in 1893. 1878 Painting of the two vessels "In Company" by Frank H Mason RBA. Whereabouts unknown.



a pretty little barque called the BOADICEA of about six hundred tons register.

I cannot identify this Barque, most records seen show vessels which were much larger, or they were steamships, or they simply weren’t afloat at the time when J L Vivian Millett saw  her.  Only two fit roughly the size. Perhaps …..

908 grt Ship; Built 1847 St John ( nr Plymouth UK )

Owners J & R Reed; Registered S John; Master Captain Lovett

Fate Unknown


Boadicea; Captain J Anderson; 1884 Captain Charles Smith

865 grt; 19ft draft; Iron steamer; 245 ft x 31 ft x 19 ft

ON 653440; Signal Letters LFQD

Built April 1872 Hebburn Newcastle; Registered N Shields

Owners Anderson & Shaw

In 1884 - Owners Adamson & Short



Steel Four-masted Sail Ship; 2 decks

Signal letters: KTWJ; Official Number: 93809

Master: Captain P. Lyall

2,668 grt; 2,613 nrt;  307.7 ft x 45.1 ft x 24.2 ft

Forecastle 33 feet

Built September 1888 T. Royden & Sons, Liverpool

For : Sailing Ship Buckingham Co. Ltd. of Limerick

        (Managers McVicar, Marshall & Co)

Registered Port of Liverpool

Rigged with nothing above double top and topgallant sails

October 1890 Captain Lyall murdered on board ship

Read the Drama on the High Seas

Captain Lyall and the BUCKINGHAM


1901 Sold D.H. Wätjen & Co., Bremen; Renamed BERTHA

18th October 1913 Sold Rhederei Akt. Gesellschaft von 1896, Hamburg;

Renamed OTTAWA; Turned into a four-masted Barque

1914 Interned San Francisco at the outbreak of WWI

1917 Condemned by the US Government as unseaworthy

Renamed MUSCOOTA; U.S. Government Port of Reg Washington D.C

1921 Sold to unknown American owners. Seized for debts

1922 Newcastle (NSW) owners

1924 Hulked; Wallarah Coal Company, Sydney NSW

24th December 1924 In collision with S.S. YARRA, Gabo Island

Converted to a mechanical coal loader based at Sydney, NSW

1942 Broken up Milne Bay, Queensland



Three masted ship

Built 1867 Barclay, Currie & Co. Glasgow

1,200grt; 229 ft x 36.2 ft

Registered London

1889 Sold Sinclair & Ellwood (Sailing Ship Carnarvon Castle Co)

1897 Sold Flugge, Johannsen & Libinus, Hamlburg; Renamed NURNBURG

1905 Sold  Sven O Stray, Christiansand

January 1910  Abandoned at sea



a three skysail yarder and beautifully sparred.

Iron Ship (Sail)

Official Number 77006

Built August 1877 Osbourne, Graham & Co, Sunderland

1,832 grt; 267.2 ft x 40.1 ft x 23.9 ft

Two decks, one bulkhead

Only Owners : G Duncan & Co, 2 East India Avenue, London

Port of Registry : London

Master : J. Duncan ( 1877-1907); 1907 Captain G.Rochester

April 1911 Broken up



a new ship built for cargo-carrying

3 Mast Ship 

Built 1883 R.Williamson & Son, Workington

1799 grt;  267 ft x  39.1 ft x 23.6 ft

For Robertson, Cruickshank & Co

Registered Liverpool

c1890 J.R.Young & Co

c1900 Norwegian owners

20th March 1912 Wrecked on a reef during a cyclone, off Balla Balla, Depuch Island, Western Australia. Eight of her crew were lost.



Iron three-masted Barque

Built 1885

1169 grt; 215.2 ft x 35.1 ft x 21.2 ft

30th March 1917  Captured by the German raider MOEWE, 410 nautical miles W by S of Cape Leeuwin, WA, during a voyage from Mauritius to Bunbury in ballast. After disembarking the crew, the Germans sank her using timed explosives.



British Ship

Master Captain J Patterson ( 1883 )

Official Number 72400; Signal Letters WTMV

1256 grt; 231.3 ft x 36.3 ft x 22 ft

Built Nov 1875 Greenock

Owners J Russell & Co



4-masted steel barque

Originally built as a steamship

2,079 grt; 2,005 nrt; 280.6ft  x 42.1ft x 24ft

Built  July 1883 by Ramage & Ferguson, Leith.

For D. Brown & Sons, London. Indian Jute Trade.

Master : Captain R. Irvine

May 1893 Capsized and wrecked Amtlangoda, Bombay to Diamond Island.



ECCLEFECHAN new ship built for cargo-carrying.With lines as awful as her name, but she was noteworthy for being square-rigged on all four masts, which was not so usual then as it became later.

Four-masted iron Barque ( green )

Built August 1882 R. Duncan & Co, Port Glasgow

For The Village Line, T.C. Guthrie, Glasgow

2,106 grt; 2,058 nrt; 290.6 ft x 42.2 ft x 23.6 ft

Master Captain J. Dow

23rd February 1900 Under full sail, she was stranded, Skateraw, Dunbar



Built 1888 R Stephenson & Co, Newcastle

Owners McIntyre Bros & Co

1640 grt; 290 ft x 40.2 ft x 25.8 ft

Official Number 95237

Registered Newcastle

Master ( 1890 ) : S F North

Fate Unknown



Sail Ship
Official Number 45405

Built April 1863 Barclay Curle Whiteinch, Glasgow

995 grt; 199 ft x 33 ft x 21 ft

Registered Liverpool

Owners : Greenshields Cowie & Co

1881 Master : J B Rees

Registered  Swansea; Port Nr 05/1887

April 1890 Salavaged by HMS BRAMBLE
September 1907 Sold to Dutch National; reduced to a Hulk


The Times : 10th October 1891

Distribution of Salvage Money.

The Accountant-General of the Navy gives Notice that the distribution of salvage money for services rendered to the British ship Fleur-de-Lys by her Majesty's ship Bramble, between April 5 and 20, 1890. will commence on Tuesday, the 13th inst., in the Prize brnach of the Department of the Accountant-General at the Navy, Admiralty, Spring-gardens, SW. Agents and other persons holding powers of attorney, prize orders, assignments, or other instruments, by virtue of which they may be legally entitled to claim the share of any salvor serving in the above-named ship, are requested to present the same at the office. All applications from persons entitled to share, who are not serving afloat, should be addressed "On Prize Business, to the Accountant-General of the Navy, Admiralty, London SW". Such applications ( except in the case of commissioned officers ) should be accompanied by certificates of service. The following are the shares due to an individual in the several classes:- Commanding officer, £68 14s 3d; fourth class, £35 10s 11d; fifth class £23 13s 11d, sixth class £14 4s 5d; seventh class £11 17s; eighth class £8 5s 11d.



British Barque

Wool carrier for London trade.

Fitted with engine by Francisco Calderon; Single screw

1159 grt; 237.3 ft x 34 ft x 20.9 ft

Official Number 13651; Signal Letters WKNC

Master Captain I B Rugg

Built April 1873 A McMillan & Sons, Dumbarton

Owner: F H Dangar

F H Dangar, with George Dibbs, bought the Gladstone, around 1880.

1889 the NEOTSFIELD was built to his specifications

and designed for the comfort of the crew.



CHERSONESE (called by sailors the "Curse of Jasus"), another converted steamer dating back to the 'fifties which had turned out a very fast sailing ship.

The Belfast Directory in 1900 stated that “No city in Ireland (if indeed any in the United kingdom) has so rapidly developed itself from insignificance to vast importance as Belfast.” From the launch of its first iron vessel, the KHERSONESE in 1855, the shipyard became of worldwide importance with the success of its international expertise and enterprise.

Built as a British Steamship - one funnel

Three masts (Rigged for Sail); clipper bows; iron hull

1711 grt; 1,409 nrt; 246.1 ft x 38.9 ft x 23 ft

Single screw; 9 knots

Built Oct 1855  Robert Hickson & Co, Belfast

For Liverpool, Newfoundland & Halifax S.N. Co.

Official Number 8198; Signal Letters KBFN

Master 1870 John Ellison

Master 1882 J Chapman

Registered London

Owners George Duncan & Co

1856 Used as a Crimean War repatriation Transport

May 1957 Lost her propeller while homeward bound from Maine

         and completed the voyage under sail

1857 North Atlantic SN Co

         Became an Indian Mutiny Transport ( manager Robert Alexander )

1859 Weir, Cochrane & Co, Liverpool, managers of the North Atlantic SN Co

1863 Robert Duncan & Co

1866 Engines removed; Re-rigged as a Barque

1889 Dutch owners

July 1891 destroyed by fire at Montevideo


The Illustrated London News  3rd November 1855

This noble ship presents another instance of the rapid progress now being made in the construction of iron vessels. In her are admirably combined all the qualities necessary for a sea-going vessel: she is full rigged; and, as her dimensions will show, capable of carrying canvas with any ship afloat: her length of keel is 222 feet, her length on deck being 235 feet; breadth of beam, 30 feet; depth of hold, 22 feet 11 inches; builder’s tonnage, about 1700. It is intended at present to erect a saloon for cabin-passen­gers aft, and house forward for the officers, engineers, &c., as to leave an ex­tensive area of main deck as a promenade clear for passengers or troops, or accommodation for the transport of horses. Her ‘tween decks present a clear space of 180 feet long and 7 feet high, well ventilated. She has five bulkheads, two of which run to the upper deck; she has capacity for over 2000 tons cargo, after leaving ample room for her engines, machinery, and coal. Her engines, constructed by Messrs. Randolph, Elder, and Co., of Glasgow, are nominally 200-horse power; but this only faintly represents the actual power, which will combine safety with great speed.  The Khersonese was built by Messrs. Robert Hickson and Co., on the beautiful piece of land known as Queen’s Island, forming one side of the harbour of Belfast, and is the largest vessel ever built in Ireland. She was launched on October 4th and, on entering the water, was greeted by the cheers of thousands of the inhabitants assembled on the Island and opposite quays. The material is of the best and heaviest used for ships of this size, put together on the firmest and most approved plan and forming, on the whole, as handsome and as useful a ship as any afloat. Mr. James Alexander, of Liverpool (with whom is associated Messrs. James Johnson and Co., of same place, and Messrs. A. and C. Taylor, of Dublin), is the managing owner of the Khersonese; and we understand they are so highly satisfied with her model and construction that they have arranged with Messrs. Robert Hickson and Co. to build another ship of about 2000 tons, which is now well advanced, and will be launched in about three months.


The Times 1st June 1857

Liverpool, Saturday

The advantages of the new graving docks at Birkenhead have been exemplified by the despatch given to the repairs of the screw steamship Khersonese. The vessel arrived on the 22nd inst with a broken shaft and minus her screw, and was docked the next day in Mr Laird's large dock. Today she was afloat again, having had several new plates put to her bottom, and a new screw shaft ( which had to be forged ) fitted. She will sail early in the week for Portland.


5th August 1857 The Times

Sea Sickness Cureable

Dr W P Harris - surgeon to the Chersonese steamship, writes to the Lancet : "I am much surprised at the opinion which is so prevalent of the utter incurability of sea sickness. i believe this opinion to exist amongst the non-medical part of the community from sheer ignorance, and among sea-going surgeons from a supineness in applying remedies, a fault to which they are rather too subject. As surgeon to one of the first-class American steamships, which each voyage carries over to Portland at least 400 emigrants, I think I may venture to state my experience. In the greater number of instances I allow the stomach to discharge its contents once or twice, and then, if there is no organic disease, I give five drops of chloroform in a little water, and if necessary repeat the dose in four or six hours. The almost constant effect of this treatment, is to cause an immediate sensation as it were of warmth in the stomach, accompanied by almost a total relief of the nausea and sickness, likewise curing the distressing headache, and usually causing a quiet sleep, from which the passenger awakes quite well".



J L Vivian Millett saw KNIGHT OF ST. MICHAEL,

a magnificent "four-poster" on her first voyage in 1883.

A four-masted steel ship

Rigged : Royal sails over double top and topgallant sails.

Built Feb 1883  W.B. Thompson, Glasgow.

2,278 grt; 2,221 nrt; 294.7 ft x 42.2 ft x 24.1 ft

Owners : R.L. Greenshields, Cowie & Co., Liverpool.

Master : Captain T. Johnstone.

1897 Sold Ant. Dom. Bordes et fils, Dunkerque; Renamed PACIFIQUE

Master : Captain Le Treust.

1907 In collision with barque RHÔNE (also Ant. Dom. Bordes et fils)

Both Masters were dismissed.

1916 Sold Gaillard & Co, Bayonne; Renamed PAZIFIQUE

21st October 1916  Left Penarth for Port Arthur, Texas, and disappeared.



Official Number 87100

Built 1883 Barrow S.B. Co

Registered London

Indo-China Steam Navigation Company

2,134 grt; 250ft x 39. 2ft x 21ft

241 hp; 10 knots; compound engines

25th July 1894 Sunk in the Sino-Japanese War

Read Captain Galsworthy’s report



LADAKH, one of Bate's ships, and the very first, I should imagine, to serve out such unheard-of luxuries to her crew as butter and marmalade.

Ship; Built Feb 1883 Oswald Mordaunt & Co, Southampton

1942 grt; 269 ft x 39.5 ft x 24.1 ft

Official Number 87815; Signal Letters HKQC

Master 1886 Captain Delargy

Registered Liverpool

Owners E Bates & Sons

Fate Unknown



A Cable Laying Ship

Built 1886 Napier & Sons, Glasgow (Yard Nr 400)

1,545 grt; 255.7 ft x 34.1 ft x 17.6 ft

For the Eastern Telegraph Company

1904 Sold Western Telegraph Company; Renamed NORSEMAN (3)

1924 Moored Pernambuco Harbour, as a cable hulk; Renamed NORNA (2)

1933 Scrapped

More information and pictures at



Last iron square-rigger

Built Aug 1889 Messrs. A. McMillan & Son, Dumbarton

1,894 grt; 269.6 ft x 40.1 ft x 22.7 ft

Owner   F. H. Dangar, of Dangar, Gedye & Co, Sydney

Master  Captain Rugg – earlier of the GLADSTONE, later of the DEE

1902 sold R. Thomas & Co

Master  Captain E. Jones

1905 Master Captain Evans

1916 Master Captain W.L.B. Kelk

1917 sold to James Bell & Co, Hull

Master Captain T. Dunning

26th June 1917 Stopped by a German submarine 112 miles SW by S Bishop’s Rock, Isles of Scilly. The crew were allowed to leave in their own ship’s boats, then she was sunk by detonation charges.



British cargo Steamship

Built 1895 Caird& Co

Owners : Peninsular & Oriental SN Co

5,913 grt; 430 ft x 49.3 ft x 29.8 ft

Triple-expansion engines; 662 nhp

20th June 1915 Wrecked 1 mile North of Colombo, whilst on voyage from Bombay to Shanghai carrying a general cargo.



ONEIDA was a large vessel, which had formerly been a steamer,

which must have been of considerably over 2,000 tons.

Iron hull, clipper bow Ship

Built March 1855 by John Scott, & Sons, Greenock

For Canada Ocean SS Co, Montreal

Official Number 7416

Registered London

2,293 grt; 306.9 ft x 38.10 ft x 19.2 ft

One funnel, Three masts (Rigged for Sail)
Engines Scott, Sinclair & Co, Greenock; 530 hp; single screw; 10 knots

1855 Became Crimean Troop Transport Nr.222

1856 European & Australian Royal Mail Co

1858 Royal Mail Steam Packet Co; Remeasured 2285 grt; 1372 nrt

1874 Ellis & Sons, London; Converted to Sailing Ship

1890s Hulked at Puerto Delgado, Chile


The Times 12th May 1856

The Oneida screw steam transport, No 222, Captain Moreton, arrived at Spithead yesterday from Ismid, with 400 men, 20 officers, and 165 horses of the 8th Hussars, under the command of Brigadier-General Shewell. the following are the officers:- Colonel de Salis, Major Tomkinson, Captain Chetwode, Lieutenants Clowes, Heneage, sawbridge, and Mussenden, Cornest Harrison, Webster and Haynes, Adjutant Harding, and Surgeon Lockwood, Veterinary Surgeon grey, Paymaster Duberly, Quartermaster Lant, Lietenant Coates, 7th Hussars; Lieutenant Paget of the 8th Hussars; Lieutenant Jones of the 8th Hussars and Mr Miller, engineer RN.



Captain J L Vivian Millett speaks highly of her crew

 and the speed at which she sets sail.

American Ship; Registered Boston

Built May 1876 Smith & Townsend, East Bostsn, Massechussetts

1735 grt; 221 ft x 41.2 ft x 24.6 ft

Owners W H Kinsman & Co

Official number 150094; Signal Letters JRWH

Master (1882) Captain John Mullin

Fate Unknown



The PERICLES was, of course, the well-known clipper of the Aberdeen White Star Line. She was a beautiful little ship, as were all those belonging to that firm; but her day is now done, as I see that she has just been sold by the Norwegians for breaking up.

Three masts Full-rigged iron hull Ship

Built July 1877 W.Hood & Co, Aberdeen

1,598 grt; 259.5 ft x 39.3 ft

For the Aberdeen Line

Donkey boiler and engine, steam condenser and steam windlass

1904 Sold Leif Gundersen, Porsgrund, Norway; Barque Rigged

1911 Pettersen and Ullenaess, Porsgrund

1916 Christiansands Shipping Co; Renamed SJURSO

1923 Scrapped, Kiel



Iron full-rigged ship

Built May 1874 Whitehaven Shipbuilding Company

For Fisher & Sprott, Liverpool

1,777 grt; 206.0 ft x  39.1 ft x  23.1 ft;   3 masts

1892 W. Lowden & Company

1904 Norwegian Owners, Renamed IRMGARD

June 1910 On a voyage Streaky Bay, South Australia, to Falmouth

with 30,000 bags of wheat, she was wrecked off Canal, Chile



Full rigged composite clipper ship

Built 1862 by Bilbe & Co, Rotherhithe

For John Willis & Son, London

915 nrt; 191.4ft x 34ft x 20.7ft

1879 Reduced to a barque

1884 Sold to be broken up



YARRA YARRA, a pretty little barque which came in under jury rig,

having been dismasted in the Bay of Bengal

Norwegian Barque

665 grt; 132.6 ft x 31.29 ft x 20.4 ft

Registered Arendal, Norway

Built June 1836 New York and rebuilt in 1874

Hull metalled December 1878

Owners : J L Ugland

Master 1882 : Captain W Klocker

Fate Unknown




Thanks also to John D Stevenson, Andy C Adams, Ted Finch

and Bryan Richards



Raymond Forward