The Mersey Indian Indentured Ship



This post is about the the Mersey Indian indentured ship that brought indentured servants to Trinidad, Guyana, and the Caribbean.

On October 20, 1897, the Mersey Indian indentured ship landed in Trinidad with 668 passengers. There were 11 deaths during the voyage. It made 3 voyages to Trinidad.

The Mersey was constructed by Charles Connell & Co. in Glasgow in 1894.

Commissioned by James Nourse of London, the Mersey was built as a full-rigged steel ship with a length of 270.7 feet and a weight of 1,829 tons. The Mersey was an imposing vessel that reflected the advancement of shipbuilding technology in the late 19th century.

Role as a Coolie Ship: 

The Mersey played a vital role in the indenture system of the era. “Coolie ships” were responsible for transporting indentured laborers, mainly from India, to various British colonies.

The ship's large capacity allowed for the transportation of a significant number of Indians.

The Mersey holds the record for the largest number of Indians arriving on a sailing ship to Guyana. On February 22, 1895, the Mersey landed in British Guiana with 683 Indians.

In 1910, the ship became the first sailing vessel to be equipped with a radio. 

The Mersey also gained recognition for being the first ship to hold an appendectomy procedure.

In 1908, the Mersey was acquired by the White Star Line and transformed into a training vessel for aspiring seafarers. It was scrapped in 1923.

Please sign our Petition to preserve the Mersey records, and related Caribbean ship records at WestIndianDiplomacy.com.

By Melissa Ramnauth, Esq. @Lawyer_melissa_r


This post was about the the Mersey Indian indentured ship that brought indentured servants to Trinidad, Guyana, and the Caribbean.

Sources:

  1. "Mersey (1894 ship)" - Wikipedia. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mersey_(1894_ship) 
  2. "Category:Mersey (ship, 1894)" - Wikimedia Commons. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Mersey_(ship,_1894) 
  3. "Mersey (Ship : Built 1894) | Items" - National Library of New Zealand. https://natlib.govt.nz/tapuhi/-79755 
  4. "Sailing Vessel MERSEY built by Charles Connell & Company in..." - Clyde Ships. https://www.clydeships.co.uk/view.php?ref=4708 
  5. "Mersey (1894 ship)" - Encyclopedia. https://en-academic.com/dic.nsf/enwiki/4056924 
  6. https://guyanachronicle.com/2009/05/05/the-coolie-ships/ 

By Melissa D. Goolsarran Ramnauth, Esq. | This content is copyright of West Indian Diplomacy, LLC and may not be reproduced without permission.

She runs West Indian Diplomacy, a Caribbean blog aimed at promoting West Indian history and business in the global marketplace. Melissa has been an attorney for over 10 years. She currently focuses on trademark registration, trademark searches, and office actions. She also has extensive legal experience in the areas of trademarks, copyrights, contracts, and business formations. She owns her own Trademark Law Firm that is virtually based out of Fort Lauderdale.


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