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Sailing Ships

Townsley Links - Sailing Ships of Ferrybridge. The following are series of references to family members connected with the inland and coastal commercial navigation that was based in Ferrybridge, West Yorkshire

Details kindly provided by Ron Gosney of Knottingley; a member of the Pontefract & District Family History Society and author of an excellent book on this subject.

Sloop 'MARY' (1801)

A round sterned wooden sailing ship with a single mast and sloop rigged. Built in Methley in 1801, its measurements were 54'10"x 13'10" x 4'5" and registered burthen 45 tons. Registered at Hull under registration number 45 on 18 August 1804 when the owner was Valentine Townsley of Castleford, a Mariner; he was also the master. Register sent to London as vessel was employed in Inland Navigation.

Note: Thought to be the Valentine Townsley who was born about March 1777 in Castleford, who married Elizabeth May in November 1797. Alternatively it could be his father, Valentine born about April 1747 and the husband of Mary Field.

Sloop 'WILLIAM and ANN' (1804)

A round sterned wooden sailing ship with a single mast and sloop rigged. Built in Wakefield in 1804, its measurements were 55'4" x 13'10" x 5'1.5" and registered burthen 45 tons. Registered at Hull under registration number 78 on 9 August 1810 when the owner was Richard Townsley of Castleford, a Mariner; he was also the master. The register was lost 27 July 1827.

Note: There are several possible Richard's that this could refer to - one born about May 1762 (who would have been 48 in 1810), his son born about April 1795 (unlikely) or Richard Edwin born about November 1783, the younger brother of Valentine (b. 1777).

Sloop 'MARY' (1811)

A round sterned wooden sailing ship with a single mast and sloop rigged. Built in Castleford in 1811, its measurements were 56'2" x 13'10.5" x 5'5" and registered burthen 47 - 65/94 tons. Registered at Hull under registration number 99 on 5 October 1811 when the owner was Valentine Townsley of Castleford, a Mariner; he was also master. Re-registered at Hull under registration number 295 on 12 December 1825 when the owner of all 64 shares was Valentine Townsley; he was also the master. Lost about 1835.

Note: See the entry for Valentine above.

Sloop 'C.P.T.' Official Number 4887 (1826)

A round sterned carver and clench built wooden sailing ship with a single mast and sloop rigged with a topping-up bowspit. Built in Castleford by Leake and Co and launched 4 July 1826, its measurements were 57'5" x 13'1 1.5" x 5'9.5" and registered burthen 49 - 49/94 tons. Registered at Hull under registration number 3 on 12 January 1827 when the owners were 21 shares Charles Searby of Hull, a Victualler, 21 shares Robert Tinkler Morton of Hull, a Spirit Merchant, and 21 shares Peter Townsley of Castleford, a Mariner; he was also the master. In consequence of an alteration in registered burthen to 40 tons, it was re-registered at Goole under registration number 70 on 13 December 1836 when the owners were 42 shares Peter Townsley of Knottingley, a Master Mariner and 21 shares Charles Searby of Hull, a Victualler - fraction 1 share. Thomas Storey had sold 21 shares to Peter Townsley on 9 December 1836. On 16 May 1848 Ann Searby sold 22 shares to Ann Townsley of Castleford. Other masters were: 6 January 1842 John Bennett; 13 April 1844 George Bermett; 28 September 1845 George Fenby at Goole.

Re-registered at Goole under registration number 14 on 16 May 1848 when the owners were 42 shares William Brunyard of Castleford, a Gentleman and 22 shares Richard Townsley of Leeds, a Commercial Agent and Ann Townsley of Castleford, a Widow (executors of Peter Townsley); master was George Fenby. Other masters were: 23 April 1850 William Hopwood at Goole; 2 June 1852 David Watson at Goole. Registered burthen tonnage was reduced to 40 - 2031/3500 tons. On 25 June 1855 William Brunyard sold 42 shares to Ann Townsley; then on 9 June 1857 Ann Townsley sold 64 shares to Thomas Pratt of Skelton, Yorks, a Shipbuilder.

Re-registered at Goole under registration number 14 on 15 March 1858 when the owner of all 64 shares was Thomas Pratt. On 12 September 1863 Thomas Pratt transferred 64 shares by way of mortgage to David Nutt of Ellerton, a Farmer, and John Sutton of Darrington, an Innkeeper, to secure payment of 967 - 1 - 3d plus 5% interest. Cancelled per minute 10781 dated 25 September 1885, existence doubtful.

Note: Probably the Peter born about May 1800, son of Richard (b 1762), who married Ann Searby in Hull, October 1826. This Ann Searby became Ann Townsley but there was another Ann of about the same age - one was the daughter of Charles and Elizabeth (nee Morris) of Pontefract; the other the daughter of John and Sarah of Hull. The Charles Searby shown above could be this Charles or his son born about October 1801. Peter died about 1843 (see below) and Richard was an executor. This Richard is likely to be the one born about June 1825 in Holbeck, Leeds; a son of Richard (b 1795) and Sarah and a grandson of Richard (b 1762).

Schooner 'GRATITUDE' Official Number 21805 (1842)

A round sterned carver and clench built wooden sailing ship with two masts and schooner rigged with a fast bowsprit. Built in Castleford in 1842 by David Leake and Co, its measurements were 58.4' x 14.6' x 6.8' and registered burthen 55 - 304/3500 tons. Registered at Goole under registration number 5 on 21 February 1842 when the owners were 48 shares Peter Townsley of Castleford, a Mariner; he was also master and 16 shares David Leake of Castleford, a Shipbuilder. On 2 August 1842 Peter Townsley transferred his 48 shares by way of mortgage to David Leake to secure payment of 350 plus interest. Peter Townsley died and a certfficate dated 22 March 1843 produced by his executors (Richard Townsley of Leeds, a Commercial Agent and William Brunyard of Castleford, a Gentleman) showed the mortgage to David Leake had been satisfied. The executors then sold 16 shares to David Leake and 32 shares to Richard Ward of Castleford, a Master Mariner, who was appointed master 26 April 1843.

Re-registered at Goole under registration number 28 on 23 June 1843 when the owners of 32 shares each were David Leake of Castleford, a Shipbuilder and Richard Ward of Castleford, a Master Mariner; he was also master. In consequence of an alteration in registered burthen to 40.14 tons it was re-registered at Goole under registration number 7 on 9 February 1858 when the owners were still the same. After further transactions Richard Ward became sole owner; then on 28 May 1873 he sold all 64 shares to Joseph Whiteley of Knottingley, a Master Mariner. William Taylor of Island Court Knottingley was appointed rnanaging owner 25 October 1875. Cancelled 26 July 1876 employed in Inland Navigation.

Note: See the entry for Peter and Richard above.

Schooner 'ELIZABETH' Official Number 18251 (1857)

A round sterned carver built wooden sailing ship with two masts and schooner rigged with a standing bowsprit. Built in Knottingley in 1857 its measurements were 76.3'x 18.3'x 9.2'and registered burthen 79.26 tons. Registered at Goole under registration number 20 on 27 May 1857 when the owner of all 64 shares was Joseph Weatherall of Knottingley, a Master Mariner. On 20 June 1860 Joseph Weatherall sold 8 shares to John Ingleby of Goole, a Master Mariner. On 6 October 1868 Joseph Weatherall transferred 56 shares by way of mortgage to Kirby Wilson Clarkson of Knottingley, a Gentleman, to secure payment of 400 plus 5% interest; this was discharged 14 October 1878. On 27 April 1869 John Ingleby sold 8 shares to George Townsley of Brotherton, a Master Mariner. Kirby Wilson Clarkson died and by his will dated 23 July 1851(error - 1881?), Margaret Clarkson was appointed sole executrix. On 7 May 1890 George Townsley sold 8 shares and Joseph Weatherall sold 56 shares both to John Tummons Brown of Ballances Yard, Knottingley, a Master Mariner. On 22 February 1905 John Tummons Brown sold all 64 shares to Andrew Arthur Dobson of 7 Westcott Street, Hull, a Clerk. On 6 March 1905 Andrew Arthur Dobson transferred all 64 shares by way of mortgage to John Watts of Hull, a Timber Merchant, to secure payment of sum due on current account plus 4% interest. On 27 December 1905 Andrew Arthur Dobson transferred all 64 shares by way of mortgage to Eleanor Wild of Bridlington, a Widow, to secure payment of 200 plus 4% interest. Foundered off Sheringham 27 July 1906.

February 1888. The schooner 'Elizabeth' of Goole, bound from St Malo to Mistley with a cargo of barley, met with strong NW gales and heavy squalls on 21st Feb. She headed for St Peters Port for shelter, but whilst doing so she struck the ground off the Point and grounded. She got off and went into St Peters Port arriving at midnight, making water. Goole and Marshland Gazette, 3 August 1906 - On Friday the schooner 'Elizabeth' of Goole, bound from Bridport to Grangemouth with a cargo of grit, sank a mile ENE of Sheringham on the Norfolk Coast. The crew reached the shore in their boat. The 'Elizabeth' was owned by Mr A Dobson of Goole, and sprang a leak on Thursday. The crew worked hard at the pumps, but without success, and ultimately the vessel sank in a calm sea. Last evening her masts still appeared above the water.

Note: This George could be one of a number from Brotherton that were born about the right timeframe - May 1826, 1828, 1831, May 1836, 1839, 1842 and 1844. However one is thought to have died as a child and most of the others had unrelated occupations. The most likley is George born 1831 who married Ann Shooter in October 1855; who is known to have been a waterman.

Sloop 'ARGO' Official Number 522 (1846)

A round steeled carver and clench built wooden sailing ship with a single mast and sloop rigged with a standing bowsprit. Built in Knottingley per a certificate of William Worfolk the builder on 17 March 1846, its measurements were 58.9'x 14.4! x 7. 1' and registered burthen 55 - 1815/3500 tons.

Registered at Goole under registration number 8 on 30 March 1846 when the owners were 48 shares William Moorhouse of Knottingley, a Ship owner and 16 shares David Jackson of Knottingley, a Master Mariner; he was also master. On 3 November 1849 William Moorhouse sold 16 shares to David Jackson; then on 6 May 1857 William Moorhouse sold his other 32 shares to David Jackson, now of Goole (formerly of Knottingley) a Master Mariner. David Jackson died 22 May 1859 and Letters of Administration were granted at Wakefield 16 July 1859 to his Widow, Ann Jackson. On 22 July 1859 Ann Jackson sold 22 shares to George Jackson of Knottingley, a Master Mariner, 21 shares to Joseph Austwick of Knottingley, a Master Mariner and 21 shares to Charles Masterman of Thornhill Lees, a Master Mariner.

Joseph Austwick was adjudged bankrupt 5 February 1862 and William Alfred Collingwood of London an Accountant was appointed assignee. On 27 March 1862 William Alfred Collingwood sold 21 shares to George Jackson of Knottingley, a Master Mariner. On 11 May 1864 George Jackson sold 11 shares and Charles Masterman sold 21 shares to William Townsley of Brotherton, a Master Mariner.

Re-registered at Goole under registration number 8 on 11 March 1865 when the owners of 32 shares each were George Jackson of Knottingley, a Master Mariner and William Townsley of Brotherton, a Master Mariner; the registered burthen reduced to 46.41 tons. On 11 May 1867 George Jackson and William Townsley both sold their 32 shares to George Fenton of Knottingley, a Shipowner.

Wrecked on Lowestoft Beach 11 December 1874. - December 1874 the ketch 'Argo' of Goole, under the command of Captain Brown, was riding at anchor in Lowestoft Roads, 12 December 1874; During the gale she parted from her anchor and drove ashore. It was noticed from the shore that a woman believed to be the Captain's wife, was lashed to the rigging. When the 'Argo' broke on the beach, a human chain was formed by the beachmen and other volunteers. Despite the heavy storm breakers, two men reached the vessel and rescued the woman. The crew were rescued by rocket line.

Schooner 'CHASE' Official Number 47114 (1863)

A round sterned carver built wooden sailing ship with two masts and schooner rigged. Built in Knottingley in 1863 by Garlick, its measurements were 84.91 x 18.8'x 10.3' and registered burthen 97.85 tons. Registered at Goole under registration number 10 on 5 June 1863 when the owners were 32 shares John Austwick, a Shipowner, 16 shares William Green, a Master Mariner, and 16 shares Edward Jackson, a Master Mariner, all of Knottingley. On 29 June 1863 John Austwick sold 16 shares to John Morris of Knottingley, a Master Mariner; then on 26 May 1873 Edward Jackson sold 16 shares to William Green of Knottingley, a Shipowner; on the same day John Morris sold his 16 shares to John Austwick of Knottingley, a Shipowner. On 24 June 1873 both John Austwick and William Green each sold 8 shares to Charles Townsley of Knottingley, a Shipowner. John Austwick was appointed managing owner 25 October 1875. On 3 June 1880 registered burthen reduced to 89.83 tons. Wrecked at Laraiche 23 February1885. March 1885 - Lloyds agent at Laraiche reports that the schooner 'Chase' of Goole, has stranded at the North side of the Bar of that Port and there is little hope of saving her. The crew saved themselves in the ship's boat. Sunday Feb 29th.

Ketch 'LAVINA' Official Number 54518 (1867)

A round sterned carvel built wooden sailing ship with two masts and ketch rigged. Built in Knottingley in 1867 by Garlick, its measurements were 61.25'x 17.65'x 8. 1' and registered burthen 56.53 tons. Registered at Goole under registration number 13 on 13 June 1867 when the owners were 22 shares William Townsley of Brotherton a Master Mariner, 21 shares George Jackson of Knottingley, a Master Mariner and 21 shares George Wilson of Knottingley, a Stonemason. Cancelled 8 May 1873 as vessel had been missing since 8 December 1872.

January 1873 - It was reported on the 24th January that the schooner 'Lavina' left Goole in November 1872 with a cargo of coal for Dieppe. After encountering bad weather she put into Fecamp on the 6th December 1872, sailing from there on the 8th December, and she has not since been seen.

 

 

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