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Old 9th October 2019, 13:38
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Family Research - Finding Crew Lists / Records?

I am looking for some advice on finding out more about my long deceased maritime ancestors, who I think (from the census records of relatives/spouses) served at sea (I am guessing - Merchant Navy).

I have managed to find a number of seafaring family members during WW1, WW2 and after, however I have two ancestors from the 18th and 19th century that I can find almost nothing relating to what they did at sea (what company, what ship/trade and in what capacity).

The two individuals in question are:

William Vart (sometimes spelled 'Veart'), lived in Whitby, Yorkshire, Born in 1770, Died in Whitby Seaman's Hospital in 1843. He is listed on his son Roberts 1794 baptism entry with an occupation of 'Sailor'. I had originally assumed that as he was in Whitby at that time, he may have been a Whaler, however I can find nothing in the Whitby Whalers crew lists for this period - so I may have been barking up the wrong tree!

His Grandson, also called William Vart (son of the above Robert) born in the Whitby area of Yorkshire in 1818, died in South Shields in 1890. he is absent for the Census records (from 1841 onward) with his wife Ann listed variously as 'Wife of Mariner' or 'Wife of Mariner (Mate)', again not much to go on other than he was at sea on the day the census records were taken.

I would like to know if any members know where to go to find some crew lists for these periods, if they are available to the general public..... and perhaps some top tips from those who have experience in these matters if at all possible?

Thanks in advance for any pointers!

Best Regards

Tom
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Old 10th October 2019, 10:53
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Hi Tom,
I have a William Vart with three different ages around that time born in Sleight in1817 - do you perhaps have the exact date at all? Reasonably sure the records all relate to the same man. I will get back on this thread.
Regards
Hugh
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Old 10th October 2019, 12:42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hugh View Post
Hi Tom,
I have a William Vart with three different ages around that time born in Sleight in1817 - do you perhaps have the exact date at all? Reasonably sure the records all relate to the same man. I will get back on this thread.
Regards
Hugh
Hello Hugh,

Thanks for the quick response, all I have for William himself is his approximate birth year from a researcher, listed as 'Abt 1818', although I also have a parish baptism record found by another researcher I hired - which states the following:
William Vart, Son of Robert & Susannah Vart, baptised 16 March 1822, Eskdaleside cum Ugglebarnby. Yorkshire, so I am now inclined to think 16/3/1822 is his most likely date for him, but I still cant be 100% certain.

He was baptised in the small village church of Eskdaleside Cum Ugglebarnby, Yorkshire, which I think was in the main parish of Sleights, near Whitby, he and his parents lived variously in the villages of Eskdaleside Cum Ugglebarnby, Lythe and Sandsend during his childhood - all in the Whitby area, I think the whole family group moved to South Shields area in the 1840's (which initially led me to assume he and his parents were in the Whaling trade).

What has scuppered my research is that he seems to have been at sea for every census he lived through, although he must have come home periodically as he had 3 children by his wife Ann between 1851 and 1856! All with him listed as either 'Mate' or 'Mariner' as his profession.

I do have a a definitive death date of 1890, in South Shields with his family (wife Ann (nee Carter), sons William George, Robert and daughter Ann).

I am led to understand that his Grandfather (William) was also a Mariner and was at sea most of his working life, he was born in the Whitby area in 1770 and died in 1843 in Whitby, so the different dates may be him?
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Last edited by Tomvart; 10th October 2019 at 12:46.
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Old 10th October 2019, 13:52
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Hello Tom,
See the attached it is only part of one record at the moment but I think it is him. My knowledge area is mainly the MN of the World Wars and in between and not so much 19th century. Those records are difficult to read and interpret but I have a basic idea of the structure but it is quite difficult to make the detail out. If you think this is him send me your email by pm and I will pass on three records to you. Then we will see about how we read and interpret them.

My friend Roger Griffiths is the main man for this era in MN research (Register of Seamen Series II and III). He is not on here to my knowledge but still on SN.


I don't see anything for William b. 1770 yet.


Regards
Hugh
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Old 10th October 2019, 14:07
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hugh View Post
Hello Tom,
See the attached it is only part of one record at the moment but I think it is him. My knowledge area is mainly the MN of the World Wars and in between and not so much 19th century. Those records are difficult to read and interpret but I have a basic idea of the structure but it is quite difficult to make the detail out. If you think this is him send me your email by pm and I will pass on three records to you. Then we will see about how we read and interpret them.

My friend Roger Griffiths is the main man for this era in MN research (Register of Seamen Series II and III). He is not on here to my knowledge but still on SN.


I don't see anything for William b. 1770 yet.

Regards
Hugh
Hugh,

Brilliant - confirmation at last! This certainly looks like him, date of birth looks right and his wife and kids did live in Jarrow according to the census returns I have seen!

Thanks mate, your a star!

I will PM you with my email address immediately!

Cheers,

Tom
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Old 10th October 2019, 14:32
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Can't help but be impressed when I see a thread like this. Good on yer lads.
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Old 10th October 2019, 14:40
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Bob, Hughs research has just reaffirmed my view of what a wonderful resource this website really is!
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Old 10th October 2019, 15:33
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Hello Tom, you should have mail now.
Regards
Hugh
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We had to pay for our freedom
Then the Merchant Ship Sailors
Paid it in full”
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Old 11th October 2019, 10:35
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Originally Posted by Hugh View Post
Hello Tom, you should have mail now.
Regards
Hugh
Thanks for the information Hugh, what a find!
Much obliged and Best Regards,
Tom
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