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Exodus – the Ships

by | Jul 22, 2021 | Exodus | 0 comments

These are the ships that we know took Chrishall people on their way to their new life in Australia. A ‘Bark’ or ‘Barque’ was a ship with at least three masts. 


The Constant was a 535 tonne Bark built in Durham in 1843, initially as a convict ship. She made four trips to Australia, the first from Dublin and the second from London. Her last two trips were from Southampton and it was on her last voyage that the Woods family travelled in 1855. She arrived on 24 February 1855 but sadly sank on 19th March 1855 while being loaded with wool for the return journey. She is stranded in Portland Bay. (Passengers in History 1836)

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There is only one voyage listed for The Constitution. She left left London on Wednesday 14 February 1855 and arrived at Sydney on 26 May 1855. (Passengers in History)

Monument to those travelling on The Constitution

William Corby arrived on The Constitution in 1855. Fifty years later, in 1905, a monument was erected to commemorate those who died on the voyage and those who died after arrival. An additional plaque was placed on the memorial on the 17th July 2005 to commemorate the 150th anniversary of the arrival.

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Irene. Wooden barque, 823 tons. Built 1852. Bound for Australia from England, fire broke out on board on 5 March 1854 when just south of the equator, forcing passengers and crew into the boats. They set a course for Brazil and were fortunate to be picked up by the barque Calabar. The barque Annie White fell in with her a few days later and took some of the passengers on to Melbourne. (Shipwrecks on the UK – Australia run)

Four years after the fire, Stephen Cane sailed on the Irene in 1858.

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The Grand Trianon

Built in 1854 The Grand Trianon was a 996 tonne ship built in New Brunswick. There is only one voyage listed on the Passengers in History site for 1860.

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The Wanata

Some nice information about ‘A Ship Named “Wanata” here – although we haven’t been able to confirm Chrishall travellers on this ship as yet!

The Wanata was part of the Black Ball Line from Liverpool.

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The Maitland

Our first definite picture of one of the ships, The Maitland. This ship carried the Pitches to Australia, and a picture appears in an article here about Diarmuid Lynch. The voyage described is a year later but it gives a good description of the ship. This article with some fascinating reports attached, appears to be just before the Pitches sailed. This report about the Maitland details the voyage the Pitches were on. It says Scottish travellers but we know there were others on there too: “transported 278 Scottish Settlers; details of voyage, Master’s immoral conduct and resulting crew indiscipline in “Perilous Voyages to the New Land” – sounds like it might have been quite a journey! (With thanks to Denise from Australia for these links.)


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Information needed…

As yet we have no further information on the Sir Charles Napier, the Talbot, the Grand Trianon or the Wanderer. If anyone has information about these ships we would love to hear.


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