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6th Jan 2009 - Extra details of the "other" Countess added


The other Countess

There were actually two vessels called "The Countess of Seafield" which were built around the same time, and both of which plied the Far East trade routes
The vessel to which this web site is referring was built in 1852 by Addison Brown of Stockton on Tees
The "other" Countess was a clipper launched in April of 1848 by Alexander Duthie & Company in Aberdeen, for Henry Adamson of Aberdeen. The Lloyds Register Surveyor reported "Has a raised quarterdeck 3ft in height. Clipper bow as termed carried rather to an extreme in outreach and full length figurehead". She had a 22ft lifeboat and 3 other boats and also a windlass, winch and capstan. Rigged as a ship she measured 140.2’ x 25.0 x 18.2’, 520 old ( 451 new ) tons. Her short life, spent entirely in the China trade, came to an end on 21 March 1855, when she stranded on the Pratas Shoal, China Sea. She was refloated and later sold to Cantonese owners.

As you can imagine, having two vessels with the same name has caused condiderable difficulties in working out their histories

Examples of the confusion:

See the notes on the 1855 and 1863 voyages

On Gary Danver's site, at one point the Countess is described as a 1000 ton barquentine but "our" Countess was a 432 ton barque

A crew list for an 1867 voyage, which is likely to be from the "other" Countess can be found by following the link ( although 432 tons was the weight of "our" Countess, so who knows.... )

With 2 ships named the same, even the experts can get bamboozled !

Jack Loney's article on Gary Danvers' site refers to:
A Captain Innes and a Captain Gibson ( as far as we know, no Capt Innes or Gibson ever commanded "our" Countess )
A voyage from Shanghai to London in 1852 ( as far as we can tell, "our" Countess was on the way to Hong Kong during this period )
The Countess being bought by Henry Pearce and being commanded by him for "several years" ( our list only shows "our" Countess having a master named Pearce for a period in 1870 )

And David R MacGregor, in his book The Tea Clippers. An account of the China Tea Trade and some of the British Sailing Ships engaged in it from 1849 to 1869 has a section on The countess of Seafield ( the Aberdeen-built "other" Countess ) but when he lists her voyages he mixes up the voyages of "our" Countess with those of the "other" one