In the early 19th century a voyage from England to India and the Far East took over a year to complete. These ships carried hundreds of crew and passengers and the logs list their names, rank, destinations, children are recorded. Many hundreds of the logs survive and are stored in the British Library in original bound volumes. Most of them have never been copied or transcribed. One free web site is now trying to change that. For the first time, a few of the ships’ logs have been made available online.
The Records cover the government of India amounting to over 10 miles of shelves, plus 70,000 volumes of official publications and 105,000 manuscripts and maps. Day to day events are recorded such as cleaning, loading the ship, weather, floggings, recording of passing ships, sickness, disputes, and death.
Only a tiny percentage of the logs have been transferred to date. Ships’ logs available online so far include the following ships’ names and voyages: