Wooden Ships and Iron Men. by Frederick William Wallace Author of Blue Waters, The Viking Blood, Record of Canadian Shipping, Under Sail in the Last of the Clippers. [Boston, Charles E. Lauriat Co. 1937] Facsimile edition printed by Mika Publishing Company, ISBN 091930267X, Belleville, Ontario, 1976. The story of the square-rigged Merchant Marine of British North America, the ships, their builders and owners, and the men who sailed them.
Wallace is considered the premier historian of the 19th century ships of the Canadian Maritime. This book is one of reasons for this consideration. The emphasis is on the ships themselves and the men who owned and sailed them. For this reason, Wooden Ships and Iron Men can be a valuable resource for the genealogist. Spicer doesn't include as much detail about the ships and men, although he provides a good suppliment. Spicer's work provides more on the economics of the ship building and owning of the time. On the other extreme is the book by Sager and Panting that provides much detail on the economics of the shipping industry but little about the ships and men. A detailed description of the building of wooden ships is provided in Parker's book. Each of these books touches on all these subjects but each has an emphasis or a chapter that adds more to one of these subjects than the others.
Wallace leaves out Cape Breton ship building and owning. Parker fills that gap very well, especially for me as my 2nd great grandfather, John McLeod, is mentioned.
Wallaced opens his book with a dramatic description of the passage of the W. D. Lawrence around The Horn. All the authors mentioned show an enormous love for their subject. Each was closely connected by personal experience and family with the subject. Wallace includes a picture of his father who was second mate along with the crew of the Agnes Sutherland. Spicer includes the same picture but does not identify the second mate. Spicer includes much on his father who was for nearly 60 years a mariner on the large square rigged ships. Wallace had much personal experience at sea on sailing vessels and Parker the same. One can trust that all these men knew by personal experience as well as extensive research the subject they were writing about.