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“Deaf as a post” and “a well-looking fellow”: Descriptions of crewmen in the Commonplace Book of Captain Edward Rotheram

Have you ever wondered what kind of people manned ships around the time of the Napoleonic Wars? Where they came from, what they did before serving, even how they looked? Well, this is exactly the information found within the Commonplace book of Captain Edward Rotheram (LBK/38). In addition to the official…

August’s Item of the month: Captain George Peacock: naval officer, inventor…and more

August’s Item of the month has just been published…and it is mind-blowing!!! Katherine has been researching the interesting career of George Peacock, a naval officer who was also a very industrious inventor. His credited inventions include the peculiar ‘floating poncho’, a dress the top half of which was inflatable, and…

The battle of Trafalgar: letters from the Lower Deck

Yesterday was Trafalgar Day, the 209th anniversary of the battle of Trafalgar, which took place off the south western Spanish coast. Much celebrated in British culture, depicted in film, verse, fine art and commemorated in all sorts of media, one could be forgiven for wondering what else there is to…

The letters of Archibald Buchanan, Midshipman (1803-1804) – 3

Here is the third and sadly final post by research student Daniel Lange, who has been looking at the correspondence of Napoleonic midshipman, Archibald Buchanan…. If you missed the first (or second) post, catch up here. Click on the images to enlarge them. Perhaps the most intriguing features in the…

Voyages of Exploration: the expeditions of Captain James Cook

Voyages of Exploration: the expeditions of Captain James Cook

The letters of Archibald Buchanan, Midshipman (1803-1804) – Part 2

Here is the second part of Daniel’s look at the letters of a young gentleman midshipman, Archibald Buchanan. If you missed the first post, you can find it in the previous pages, posted on 30 June. After a few days aboard HMS Monarch, Archibald Buchanan was transferred to the sixth-rate…

August’s Item of the Month: Heligoland Bight

August’s Item of the month looks at the opening naval clash of the First World War, the battle of Heligoland Bight, as seen through the personal papers of David Richard Beatty, first Earl Beatty (1871-1936). Beatty commanded the prestigious, fast and powerful First Battle Cruiser Squadron. While the battle was…

July’s Item of the Month

July’s item of the month has just been posted and is a reminder that the hundredth anniversary of the beginning of the ‘war to end all wars’ is almost on us. Of course no one knew this at the time and the Declaration of War in 1914 was more eventful…

The letters of Archibald Buchanan, Midshipman (1803-1804)

This is the first in a series of posts  by Daniel Lange, a research student from Berlin. He has been looking at some of the letters of a youthful trainee officer from the early nineteenth century. This is the first of 3 posts by Daniel… I have recently had the…