Catalogue description Records of the Registry of Shipping and Seamen (Board of Trade)

This record is held by Gloucestershire Archives

Details of D3080
Reference: D3080
Title: Records of the Registry of Shipping and Seamen (Board of Trade)

The list


The list is arranged as a table showing vessels for which crew lists are available in each year. The list gives official number, ship's name, date of registration, tonnage, number of documents and area of trade. The following codes have been used:


S = Severn trade (from the port of Gloucester down the Severn estuary to Bridgewater and Cardiff)


B = British coastal trade


F = Foreign trade


L = log as well as crew list


Where a document forms part of the National Maritime Museum's sample, this is noted with an N.


Content of the documents


The crew lists are six-monthly returns giving:


Official number


Name of ship


Port of registry


Date of registration




Owner - name and address


Master - name and address


Crew - name, age, place of birth, date and place of joining ship, date and place of discharge, rank


List of voyages made during the 6 months


Cargo - not always given


Births, deaths and marriages on board during the 6 months


Where a "log book" is included this is often no more than a crew list, occasionally giving details of occurrences on board.

Date: 1863-1913

The records are stored by year and by official number. To order please quote both of these.

Related material:

For further information


About the background to these records please refer to notes filed as IN 122. See also D4292 for registers of ships 1824-1855.


For index to crew lists held by other Record Offices See AC 204

Held by: Gloucestershire Archives, not available at The National Archives
Language: English

Board of Customs, Register General of all Trading Ships in Britain, 1707-1872

Registrar General of Shipping and Seamen, 1872-1992

Immediate source of acquisition:

(Acc. 3080)


Presented under the Public Records Act (1958) s.3(6) to the Gloucester Library, March 1971, and transferred 23 April 1975

Custodial history:

Presentation to local record offices


In 1970 the Public Record Office agreed to offer the remaining records on presentation under s.3(6) of the Public Records Act.


The Public Record Office sampled the records by retaining every tenth year, 1865, 1875 etc., and the National Maritime Museum took all documents relating to certain notable ships, as well as a random sample.


The official numbers of vessels registered in the Port of Gloucester after 1856 were extracted from the port registers at the Customs and Excise Office in Gloucester. Documents relating to these numbers were extracted for retention at G.R.O.

  • Merchant shipping
  • Ships
Administrative / biographical background:



Under the Merchant Shipping Acts of 1835 and later, all vessels registered at over 15 tons were required to be registered and return certain documents twice a year to the Registry of Shipping and Seamen (Board of Trade). The main documents concerned are crew lists and agreements and "official logs" for foreign-going ships. These logs are not the ship's log proper, but a record of particular incidents, e.g. deaths or disturbances on board, which had to be reported to the Registrar of Shipping and Seamen.


Official numbers were allocated to each port office on a block basis, and then issued to ships registering in that port. If for any reason a ship changed its port of registry it would have retained the same official number.


There are crew lists for some ships without official numbers and these are stored at the end of the series for each year. For some of the series ports there was a separate series of fishing boat crew lists, but not for Gloucester.




5 & 6 Wm. c.19 Merchant Shipping Act, 1835


17 & 18 Vic. c.104 Merchant Shipping Act, 1854


57 & 58 Vic. c.60 Merchant Shipping Act, 1894

Have you found an error with this catalogue description?

Help with your research