Sunday, July 22, 2012

Steerage Passengers to Natal, Dudbrook 1862 continued

By 1862 the Dudbrook was not a new ship: she had been built in Dundee, Scotland, in 1848. Barque-rigged (i.e. she was three-masted, with foremast and mainmast square-rigged and mizzenmast fore-and-aft rigged), she was137.1 ft long, 25.7 ft beam and her holds were 20.1 ft deep. In November 1852 she carried 228 male convicts from Plymouth bound for the Swan River Colony, Western Australia. That voyage took 77 days. A decade later the wooden vessel was sheathed in felt and yellow metal and considered sound enough to sail for Natal. W Deacon was Master and Owner.

A typical barque

At 572 tons the Dudbrook was larger than most of the Byrne settler ships of the 1850s. Nevertheless, the cramped conditions in steerage must have been a severe trial for the families on board. There were numerous children, many very young, e.g. the Russell family travelling with nine, the Frosts with six and the Hulmes with five. By comparison, the Kings were a small family unit of three adults and a baby. During the voyage there were two births and one death of an infant.

Arrival of Dudbrook reported in
 the Natal Witness 27 June 1862



Local newspapers tended to omit steerage passengers’ names, though the list of cabin or private passengers would appear in the shipping columns. The Natal Witness of 27 June 1862 announces the arrival of the barque Dudbrook and gives the private passengers’ names, remarking that there were also 146 Government immigrants in the steerage.

Steerage passengers are usually those whom family historians find deeply interesting. In Natal it may be possible to find the list of Government immigrants recorded in the original immigration register and this is the case with the Dudbrook arrival in June 1862. Conversely, there are occasions when the original register bypasses the cabin passengers in favour of the assisted immigrants – which may mean an ancestor well-heeled enough to pay for his passage out remaining invisible.


Below is a transcript of the Dudbrook’s steerage passenger list (not alphabetical); the figure after the name is the age of the immigrant. Bear in mind that transcripts may contain errors, often due to illegible handwriting of names in the original. The sureties (colonists already resident in Natal) are of as much interest as the immigrants, showing how informative passenger lists can be as a source:

John Gavin, shown as ‘engineer, Durban’ stood surety to David Crabb, a shoemaker, and possibly also to Benjamin Lawrence, blacksmith, and Robert Smith. (Gavin sponsored a number of immigrants to Natal, not all related to him.) Alexander Bookless, a plumber, was a relative of his surety, Robert Bookless (or Booklass), ‘smith at Durban’, who had arrived on the Ina. Thomas Amos's surety was John Byers Amos, watchmaker of Pietermaritzburg. William Pinkerton Knox, ‘carpenter at Durban’, stood surety to John Mitchell. A note in the register re Henry Phelps tells us he was a farmer at Mooi River, and across this is scrawled ‘dead’. The Swan family's surety was David Webster, sugar planter at Hill Head estate, who died in an accident at the Verulam mill shortly before the arrival of the Dudbrook, and that of the Rapsons, Josiah Rapson, ‘builder, Durban’. Samuel Marriott, bricklayer of Claremont, is listed as surety to the Westons. 

Steerage Passengers on Dudbrook:

AMOS, Thomas 21
BOOKLESS, Alexander 23
BURN, Daniel 34
Mary A 34
Daniel 2
William inft
CRABB, David 24
LAWRENCE, Benjamin 21
SMITH, Robert 22
DAVIDSON, William 19
WILL, Alexander 22
KING, George 25
Mary 26
Lucretia inft
William 47
LOUNSLEY, Thomas 24
MITCHELL, John 35
Christina 36
Elizabeth 10
Henry 8
MASON, Joseph 24
PORTER, Hugh 22
REID, Betty 21
PORRITT, Isabella 22
RAPSON, Joseph 29
Mary 27
Joseph 7
Thomas 3
SWAN, James 35
Robina 31
Helen 12 
Jessie C 10
James 8
Catharine 6
Mary 4
Robert 1
WESTON, Henry 45
Mrs 33
William 9
Sarah 8
WHATMORN, William 64  (elsewhere transcribed as WHATMOM)
Mary 45
Mary A 
Emma 19
Elizabeth 4
WILSON, John 21
GUEST, Henry 24                   (elsewhere transcribed as GUEET)
CONNELL, James 24
COOPER, Thomas 25
DAVOREN, Peter 26                  
DUGGAN, Charles 30
EARL, John C 21
CURTIN, Michael 22
FROST, William 43
Elizabeth 38
Martha 18
Emily 14
Mary L 12
Elizabeth A 8
Agnes 6
William 1
GUMBY, Edward 29
Isabel 31
Emily A 8
Annie L 2
HIPSLEY, George 22
HULME, William 38
Mary A 35
Charles 14
Sarah A 12
Andrew 8
William 6
Samuel 4
JONES, William 22
Rose 26
KENNARD, Vincent 21
Mary 23
LANGRIDGE, John 52
Ann 49
Samuel 15
Josh T 13
Emma 12
LINNANE, John 24     
LUCAS, Richard K 27
Maria 28
Lucy 2
Caroline 1
MAKER or MAHER, John 36  
Hannah 30
Bridget 10
John 4
James inft
MCKEORON, Isaac 27
Isabella 21
Edward inft
MCCABE, Josh 24
MORECOMBE, Richard 31
Annie 25
MORGAN, Charles 31
Mary J 29
Charles 3
Robert H inft
PHELPS, Jane 21
PREIST, Edward 26   
RIPLEY, James 20
George 23
RITCHIE, David 21
RITSON, Thomas 25
Margaret 27
Jane 4
John H 3
Thomas 1
ROBINSON, George 24
RUSSELL, Benjamin 23
Mary A 21
Benjamin 45
Sarah 44
Thomas 19
James 17
Elizabeth 14
Sarah 12
Simeon 9
Margaret 7
Emmeline 4
RYAN, Thomas 25
John 18
SANDERSON, John 44
Elizabeth 42
SIMPSON, John 27
Jane 28
William 4
Jane 2
TAYLOR, John 19
TODD, William 22
TURRELL, Alfred 20
WICKES, Joseph 42
WILKINSON, John 23
AVERY, Joseph J 21
PHELPS, Henry 40
Ann 48
Fanny 15
Catharine 12
SMITH, William 21
PHIPPS, John 21
BRADSHAW, Richard 28
Rachel 23 


Epilogue: My great great grandparents George and Mary Ann King settled in Pietermaritzburg. They had eight children:  Lucretia born 14 July 1861 (before they left England); Frederick William b 5 May 1864, Alice Mary King (my great grandmother, who married James Dudley Swires) b 16 June 1866; Edwin George King, b 3 March 1869; Hubert Richard King b 29 October 1871 (who may have died young as another Hubert made his appearance a few years later); Elizabeth Charlotte King (who married Ernest A Rhodes) b 21 April 1873; Hubert William King b 6 August, 1875; and Albert Richard King b 4 April, 1880 (who married Elizabeth Rose Leeding and died in 1944) .Mary Ann was 46 when she had her last baby – she had been bearing children for nineteen years. 

George King died on 5 May 1899 and Mary Ann in 1911; both lie buried in the Commercial Road Cemetery, Pietermaritzburg.













1 comment:

GAB said...

Very Interesting page
The William Jones and "Rose" (actually Roseannah)Jones in the list are my Great Grandmother and Great Grandfather