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Chatham Dockyard workers

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Chatham Dockyard workers

Postby bernardhowell » Thu Oct 22, 2015 5:07 pm

A project to discover information about the family history of workers in the former Chatham Royal Dockyard, now Chatham Historic Dockyard is under way' utilising pay records amongst others. A lot of effort in searching census/parish records etc. is being put in by volunteer researchers of which I am just one, to build family histories.
The period of the research focuses on 1803, and there would be interest in anyone employed in the yard at this time.
There must be many researchers and readers of this forum who have completed research in this area, if you would like to share the fruits of your research, this information may be included in the new exhibition that is being constructed with a target completion of mid 2016.
The exhibition will be a fitting tribute to the many thousands of skilled workers and their families that helped establish England as the world Sea Power.
Waiting to hear from YOU
Last edited by bernardhowell on Mon Dec 07, 2015 4:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Chatham Dockyard workers

Postby Barry Rees » Fri Oct 30, 2015 11:10 am

Hi Bernard. This sounds like a fascinating project. I am not sure how much travel there was between Sheerness Dockyard and Chatham. My Great Grandfather was a joiner at Sheerness Dockyard and I am lucky enough to have his tool-chest and all of his tools (see photo).
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Re: Chatham Dockyard workers

Postby sdup26 » Fri Oct 30, 2015 11:30 am

What a beautiful toolbox! Your great-grandfather must have been a real craftsman. If he, and others, who worked on the dockyards can be remembered through this project, it can only be a good thing.
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Re: Chatham Dockyard workers

Postby AdrianB38 » Fri Oct 30, 2015 2:56 pm

I want a like button for that toolbox picture!
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Re: Chatham Dockyard workers

Postby Pam Phillips » Sun Nov 01, 2015 12:17 pm

My 3 x great great uncle John Sheffield was a naval architect at Chatham Dockyard in the 1840-50s. I have put a lot of information about him on my Ancestry family tree at http://trees.ancestry.co.uk/tree/126714 ... /571373607.

Regards
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Re: Chatham Dockyard workers

Postby bernardhowell » Mon Nov 02, 2015 2:32 pm

Sorry for a late reply, I was waiting for a notification through the system but I must have forgotten to tick the box.
Pam and Barry, thanks for your interest and replies.
Pam I will pass your details on to the researchers who may well be interested, thanks.
Barry Im not sure about travel between Sheerness and Chatham at that time, it would be a bit of a hike to commute in those days but I will pass on the details and photo.
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Re: Chatham Dockyard workers

Postby Kazkatt » Sat Dec 12, 2015 5:44 pm

My great, great grandfather Henry Hawkins born in 1832 in Ramsgate and was living in Gillingham in 1861 when he is described as a shipwright, so I think it's likely he was working in Chatham dockyard. His son John R Hawkins, who is my great grandfather also lived in Gillingham and is described in the 1881 census as a fitters apprentice and in 1891 as an engine maker/fitter. He died in 1891 at the age of 29 leaving a wife and two young children, one of whom was my grandmother. I would be interested to hear if there is information about them at the dockyard.
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Re: Chatham Dockyard workers

Postby peter kent » Sun Dec 13, 2015 6:59 am

living in Gillingham in 1861 when he is described as a shipwright, so I think it's likely he was working in Chatham dockyard


There was a shipyard in Gillingham that operated until the 1870s.

But is that your man in Charlton Street in 1861? If so he would have been closer to Chatham Dockyard than the Gillingham shipyard.
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Re: Chatham Dockyard workers

Postby bernardhowell » Mon Dec 14, 2015 3:09 pm

Hi Peter, The "Chatham" Dockyard and "Gillingham" Dockyards you refer to are one and the same. The geographical boundaries in this area are very blurred, the dockyard is known as Chatham Dockyard but a large part of the old historic dockyard was in fact situated in the neighbouring borough of Gillingham.
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Re: Chatham Dockyard workers

Postby bernardhowell » Mon Dec 14, 2015 3:13 pm

Hi Kazcat, unfortunately the vast amount of personal information available pertaining to dockyard workers in Chatham is held at the GRO at Kew.
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