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Thread: STOWAWAYS

  1. #1
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    Default STOWAWAYS



    Do you have that missing ancestor that you can't find anywhere? Have you considered a stowaway? I have just watched a program on CBC and an ancestor in this case had stowed away on a ship leaving Dorset and at age 14 had ended up in Newfoundland in the late 1700's. This young lad stayed in Newfoundland, married and had a family there. I wonder if his own family back "home" in England ever found out where he had gone?
    Something to consider when all other options seem lost.

    Sue

  2. #2
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    Hi Sue

    I have just read this interesting post. Apparently Kim Cattral's grandad stowed away on a ship from Liverpool to America but was caught once the ship docked and he was sent back to England.

    I wonder if that is one of the reasons (besides incomplete and faded ink) why we struggle to find an ancestor in a passenger list when we know through other evidence that they went abroad.

    Ben

  3. #3
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    I used to work in Border Control in the UK in recent years. Stowaways remain a significant issue to this day. They are discovered all the time. However whilst it is possible to stow away for a short journey from say France to the UK without being discovered, it is much harder on a longer voyage. Few stowaways have sufficient food, adequate clothing or a sufficiently secure hiding place to remain undetected on a voyage lasting 7 days or longer (eg an Atlantic crossing). A few do succeed, and we know this from the remains they leave behind them on the ship or in a container, which get discovered sooner or later. But in most cases they either give themselves up to the crew in mid voyage due to hunger and cold, or get discovered when sneaking about the boat at night. They then get added to the passenger list and reported to the immigration authorities at the next port (as probably happened in Kim Cattral's case). So in the 1700s and 1800s I'd say it'd be virtually impossible to remain concealed on a small vessel for 3 weeks. Whether, when they were discovered, the Master always told the port authorities is another matter, but I'd say mostly stowaways on long distance voyages were discovered.


    Elwyn

  4. #4
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    Hi

    I have the same thoughts as you Elwyn. I did think that some may succeed but as you said they often gave themselves up or were discovered. I think they may have hidden in the storerooms of the ship. Some may have died on the voyage due to hunger and cold or a sudden infection from the rats lol. Plus it makes you wonder how they boarded the ship without getting caught.

    George Baugh, Kim Cattral's grandad was caught in 1935.

  5. #5

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    An ancestor of mine stowed away on a ship from England (I donít know which port he would have departed from) to Newfoundland, at the age of 12. I believe the year he stowed away would have been either 1865, 1866, or 1867. The reason for a 3 year span is that sometimes Iíve heard it told that he was 13 years old, but the majority of tellings have him aged at 12.

    Iíve often wondered how or why a 12 year old would have done this, was he in trouble, an orphan, did his family (if he had any) not worry? I donít have much more information than that. I know he came out from hiding on the ship when he figured they were far enough from shore that they would not have returned him, and they put him off the ship when they stopped in Twillingate Newfoundland. A family took him in and gave him odd jobs to perform. He married, had children, and lots of descendents from there.

    His name was Thomas Pryor. Unless he made that up.

    If anyone has any info or resources that might help me find some answers, I would appreciate it. I know itís a long shot but it never hurts to ask.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by TrapperB View Post
    An ancestor of mine stowed away on a ship from England (I donít know which port he would have departed from) to Newfoundland, at the age of 12. I believe the year he stowed away would have been either 1865, 1866, or 1867. The reason for a 3 year span is that sometimes Iíve heard it told that he was 13 years old, but the majority of tellings have him aged at 12.

    Iíve often wondered how or why a 12 year old would have done this, was he in trouble, an orphan, did his family (if he had any) not worry? I donít have much more information than that. I know he came out from hiding on the ship when he figured they were far enough from shore that they would not have returned him, and they put him off the ship when they stopped in Twillingate Newfoundland. A family took him in and gave him odd jobs to perform. He married, had children, and lots of descendents from there.

    His name was Thomas Pryor. Unless he made that up.

    If anyone has any info or resources that might help me find some answers, I would appreciate it. I know itís a long shot but it never hurts to ask.
    If anyone can help TrapperB with his query please add to this thread.

    https://www.british-genealogy.com/fo...nfo?highlight=

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Hi TrapperB,

    B-G doesn't allow duplicate posts as they lead to duplicate effort which is frustrating.

    If a member spends time searching for info and posts on a thread, then finds an identical post on another thread and a second member has responded with the same info they quite naturally feel annoyed as they have wasted their time and effort.
    Alma

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by almach View Post
    If anyone can help TrapperB with his query please add to this thread.

    https://www.british-genealogy.com/fo...nfo?highlight=

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Hi TrapperB,

    B-G doesn't allow duplicate posts as they lead to duplicate effort which is frustrating.

    If a member spends time searching for info and posts on a thread, then finds an identical post on another thread and a second member has responded with the same info they quite naturally feel annoyed as they have wasted their time and effort.
    Sorry about that. Thank you Almach

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by TrapperB View Post
    Sorry about that. Thank you Almach
    No problem, TrapperB.
    Alma

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