PortCities - Southampton

PortCities UK
PortCities Bristol
PortCities Hartlepool
PortCities Liverpool
PortCities London
PortCities Southampton

*

Screen Version
About this site
Site Map
Feedback

You are here: PortCities Southampton > Registers and Records > Official Sources > How to use Customs registers > Reading a Customs register

Explore this Site

Start Here: About Us, Partners And Collections, Timeline, Get Interactive!, Help

Galleries: Image galleries, Biographies

Southampton: The Docks, River Itchen, Southampton at war, Flying Boats, Titanic, Finding Out More, Southampton speaks, Street Directories, Historic Buildings Survey

Registers and Records: Lloyd's Register, Official Sources, Other Records, Finding Out More

Wrecks and Accidents: Why accidents happen, Investigations, Improving Safety at Sea, Finding Out More, Wreck Reports

Life of a Port: How a port comes to life, At work in a port, Ports at play, Trade - lifeblood of a port, Finding Out More

On the Line: Company growth and development, Shipping lines, Transatlantic travel, Preparing a liner, Finding Out More

Sea People: Life at sea, Jobs at sea, Travelling by sea, Starting a new life by sea, Women and the sea, Finding Out More

Diversity of Ships: The variety of ships, What drives the ship?, Ships of ancient times, Ships in the age of sail, Ships of the steam age, Ships of today

Search:      (Advanced Search)

How to use Customs registers


Reading a Customs register

Customs registers will give almost all the information that is available about a ship, but there are limitations. These documents are the major source of data for publications such as Mercantile Navy List [definition] and for British ships in Lloyd`s Register of Ships [definition].

Form No. 19, as used from 1890, is the first and most important page of the registration documents. Bound with these will be other sheets showing changes of name, tonnages, owner or manager and data on any mortgages taken out on the ship.

Page from a Customs register showing transactions for `Gazelle`Page from a Customs register showing transactions for `Gazelle`

View transcription

Official number: a unique identifier for a British ship.

Ship`s name, any previous names, with subsequent changes marked.

Port of registry [definition],   date of registration and port number. These numbers were allocated in sequence each year and provide another way to identify the ship.

Previous registration, with port, year and port number.

Hull details. Where, when and by whom it was built.

Rig [definition], material and build.

Hull dimensions.

Details of the machinery, including type, number of cylinders, builders of engines and boilers, dates, horsepower [definition] and speed. The earliest figures for horsepower were nominal (NHP), which were calculated using a formula based on engine dimensions. Later, horsepower was measured scientifically as brake [definition] horsepower (BHP) and indicated [definition] horsepower (IHP).

Tonnage measurements, showing calculation of the ship`s net [definition] and gross [definition] tonnage.

Master`s [definitionname.

Name, address and occupation of the owner(s) and number of sixty-fourth shares they held. Changes of ownership or mortgages taken out on the ship were recorded on separate transaction sheets which were bound to the form. Another form also gave a summary of ownership.

Place and date of registration.

Details of when and why the registry was closed are written on the form.

 

Sponsors:

Southampton City Council
New Opportunities Fund
Lloyd's Register
London Metropolitan Archives
National Maritime Museum
World Ship Society

Legal & Copyright
Screen Version
About this site
Feedback

Partner sites:
PortCities UK
PortCities Bristol
PortCities Hartlepool
PortCities Liverpool
PortCities London
PortCities Southampton