MARINERS-L ArchivesArchiver > MARINERS > 2000-08 > 0966521745
Subject: Re: [Mar] the "Cataraqui" - 1845
Date: Thu, 17 Aug 2000 11:15:45 -0300
At 04:43 PM 2000-08-16 -0500, you wrote:
>I understand that the ship Cataraqui sailed from Liverpool 20 Apr 1845 for
>Australia. It went down I believe near Port Philip 4 Aug 1845. Lives lost
>407 with one survivor. Does anyone have any information about this loss or
>could you point me in the direction to find out. I believe it carried
>mostly Irish passengers.
This is quite the coincidence! Marj Kohli posted this (below) to my email
list TheShipList this week .... Hopefully she will have it online by the
end of this week, correspondence included .. keep checking .. it will
appear under *new*
I have a copy of the passenger list for the Cataraque of 1845. She was
sailing to Port Phillip and was lost in Bass's Straits. There were only a
Solomon Brown - was the only emigrant saved of the 369 on board.
In the crew of 39 only 8 survived - being:
Thomas Guthery - chief mate
William Jones - able seaman
Francis Millen - able seaman
John Roberts - able seaman
John Simpson - ordinary seaman
John Robertson - ordinary seaman
Peter Johnson - ordinary seaman
William Blackstock - apprentice
This information is extracted from the British Parliamentary Papers of
1846. The passenger list contains the name of the person, age, "calling,"
and their native parish. In the crew, the doctor, Charles Carpenter, was
assisted by his brother Edward, also a doctor - both drowned. I will
extract the names of the others and post them to TSL web pages.
Another list member, Tony Dalton posted this follow up
Further to the recent posting from Marj, the following may be of interest.
It is taken from a newspaper report (publication unknown) :
CATARAQUE :Owner unknown. Captain C.W. Finlay. Crew of 46, including two
doctors, M.C. & Edward Carpenter, brothers. Sailed from Liverpool on April
20th, 1845, with 369 emigrants to Australia, principally from Bedfordshire,
Staffordshire, Yorkshire and Northamptonshire. About 120 of the passengers
were married, with families, in all 73 children.
On August 3rd, at 19:00, the ship was hove-to because of the weather. On
August 4th, at 04:30, in a heavy gale and mountainous seas, the ship struck
a reef on the west coast of Kings Island at the entrance to the Bass
Strait. Immediately she struck she was sounded and 4 feet of water was found
in the hold.
All passengers attempted to rush onto the deck and many succeeded in doing
so until the ladders were knocked down by the workings of the vessel. There
were shrieks for assistance from those trapped below, appealing to the deck
watch to help them. The crew, to a man, were on deck the moment the ship
struck and were instantly employed in handing-up the passengers. Upto the
time the vessel began breaking up, it was supposed that between 300 and 400
were got onto the deck by the extraordinary exertions of the crew.
At daylight on the morning of August 4th, would-be rescuers found the stern
of the vessel smashed-in with numerous bodies floating in the area and
hanging-up upon the racks. About 200 persons were still clinging to the
ship, the sea breaking over them and washing them away. About 16:00, the
vessel parted amidships, at the fore-part of the main rigging, and between
70 and 100 souls were thrown into the waves. At about 17:00, the wreck
parted by the fore-rigging and so many people were washed away that only
about 70 were left, crowded onto the forecastle and held there by lashings.
At daybreak on August 5th, it was discovered that only about 30 were left
alive. The sea was making a clean breach into the forecastle and the deck
was rapidly breaking up. Almost immediately afterwards, the ship totally
Out of a total of 415 souls onboard, only 9 were saved.