Emigration, Plymouth Cattewater
Plymouth Emigration Depot:
A lost history and one for Plymothians to be proud of, not so long ago Plymouth played a central role ‘exporting’ migrants
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This Marine Painting is special:
This painting surprised me, the location is one I’d long wished to paint, I know it intimately.
The surprise was I discovered a forgotten great story, my hope is it surprises and delights you too.
My original intention was to paint the moonlight view I’d see hundreds of times of an evening after sailing with my family.
In days long gone, my family and I were members of the Royal Plymouth Corinthian Yacht Club which to this day has two of my paintings, commissioned, in pride of place in their lounge.
I was aware of some of the Cattewater’s history, the Phoneticians, Saxons, of Francis Drake, Frobisher, Hawkins, of the Mayflower and Pilgrim Fathers…
Little did I realize just how much history I was standing on and looking at… or how many souls had emigrated via Plymouth.
I chose to show the scene much as it would have looked mid second half of the 19 th century in part because parts of that view are still clearly recognizable but under threat from careless redevelopment.
Plymouth, the port, the city,
has witness the start of far to many famous voyages to recount here many being voyages that have changed lives and our world, beyond measure.
As an assembly point for emigrants Plymouth was for centuries, thanks to the kindness of its people a preferred departure point.
The Plymouth Emigration Depot, custom built, demolished during the 1930’s was for many years the most advanced of it’s kind.
This painting shows you the clipper “Samuel Plimsoll” loading emigrants for Australia summer 1884.
Via our further reading section you can discover one of the diaries kept by an emigrant who sailed on the Samuel Plimsoll.
A lost history painted for descendants of staff and for migrants who passed through Plymouth and so we today may justifiably take pride in our city of Plymouth, Devon, England.
Enjoyed the above? Don’t miss further reading it reads like a short sea novel!
Credit where it is due: My particular thanks to Bob Brennan for tireless research and encouragement, to David Folley for the use of his facilities, Captain Tim Charlesworth of / and the Cattewater Harbour Commissioners, Ian Criddle of Plymouth Naval Reference Library, Nigel Overton Heritage Officer of Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery, Alan Collie in New Zealand who provided information unknown in Plymouth from the 1884 WESTERN FIGARO newspaper including drawings, David Meale who’s ancestor Richard James Stead who emigrated in the Samuel Plimsoll and kept a diary which includes a drama, a collision at sea during the voyage; and by no means least, to the Australian National Maritime Museum at Darling Harbour in Sydney.
All helped enormously and willingly, giving authority to this magnificent painting “Emigration, Plymouth Cattewater“.
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Gordon Frickers © 20.03.14 updated 30,05,2016, 10.06.16, 22.10.2016, 26.01.2017
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Gordon Frickers © 02.03.12 Updated 19.03.15, 27.10.15, 04.01.16, 02,02,2017, 06.04.17