Deal register of ships

This is the main page for the Deal register of ships project. The goal of the project is to corelate data contained in the official Register of British Ships about owners and masters with other contemporary sources, such as the census, poll books and directories.

The first steps in the project will be to transcribe the documentation created by customs officials for vessels registered in Deal between 1824 and 1876 (information recorded has a wider range of dates). These original registers comprise two large manuscript volumes of completed standard forms. Kent Archives have kindly digitised the two volumes for Deal and provided an image CD.

Entries in each register record the name and tonnage of each vessel, the names of the master, the builder, and the owners at the time of registration, subsequent transtactions are also recorded, making the register similar in effect to the deeds of a house. Ships are often registered more than once, usually on a change of ownership. An idea of the information that can be obtained is shown in The Argus pilot cutter.

The Crew List Project (CLIP) is providing software to support the recording of the register data and publishing the transcripts on the web. The recording software enables a synchronised view of both the scanned images and the transcript forms.

Background reading

Research guide C12: The Merchant Navy: Ship registration and Custom House records National Maritime Museum retrieved 2011-10-05.
Merchant shipping: registration of ships 1786-1994. National Archives retrieved 2011-10-05.