Tellicherry (1796 ship)

Name: Tellicherry
Namesake: Tellicherry (now Thalassery)
Owner: John St. Barbe
Port of registry: London
Builder: Joshua Young, Globe Stairs, Rotherhithe[1]
Launched: 9 May 1796[1]
Fate: Wrecked in June 1806 in the Mindoro Strait
General characteristics [2]
Tons burthen: 467, or 4653094[1] (bm)
  • 125 feet 3 inches (38.2 m) (overall)
  • 116 feet 0 inches (35.4 m) (keel)
Beam: 36 feet 0 12 inch (11.0 m)
Depth of hold: 14 feet 9 inches (4.5 m)
Propulsion: Sail
  • 1796: 10 x 6-pounder guns[3]
  • 1805: 14 x 6 & 18-pounder guns[3]

Tellicherry was launched in 1796. She made four voyages for the East India Company. Later, she made one trip to Australia transporting convicts. She was wrecked in 1806 in the Philippines.

Tellicherry was a two-decker ship built on the Thames in England for J. St Barbe, a wealthy merchant and ship owner.[4]

East Indiaman

Tellicherry made four voyages for the East India company as an extra ship, the first three under the command of Captain Sampson Baker.[2] He received a letter of marque on 2 June 1796.[3]

EIC Voyage 1 (1796-98)

Baker left Portsmouth on 11 August 1796, sailing for Bengal. Tellicherry reached Calcutta on 3 February 1797. For the return leg she left Calcutta on 6 July, reached the Cape on 29 October, St Helena on 3 December, and the Downs on 31 January 1798.[2] In the process the "Tillicherry" had to put into Ramsgate after having run ashore on the Sandwich Flatts.[5]

EIC Voyage 2 (1798-99)

Baker left Portsmouth on 8 June 1798, bound for St Helena and Bengal. Tellicherry reached St Helena on 19 August, leaving on 14 September. She arrived in Calcutta on 22 December. On the return leg she passed Saugor on 16 March 1799 and arrived at the Downs on 25 September.[2]

EIC Voyage 3 (1800-01)

For his third trip, Baker left Portsmouth on 28 June 1800, bound for Bengal and Madras. On 14 January 1801 Tellicherry arrived at Calcutta. On her return leg she arrived at Madras on 12 March, Point de Galle on 7 April, St Helena on 5 August, and the Downs on 2 November.[2]

EIC Voyage 4 (1802-03)

Tellicherry was under the command of George Welstead when she left the Downs for Bengal on 13 April 1802. She returned a year later, mooring on 27 April 1803.[6] She had stopped at Rio de Janeiro on 16 June and arrived at Calcutta on 18 October.[7]

Subsequent career

The 1803 Lloyd's Register shows Tellicherry still under John St Barbe's ownership, with her master's name given as S. Baker, and then T. Cousins. She apparently traded between Cork and Portsmouth.

Convict transport

Thomas Cuzens received a letter of marque for Tellicherry on 6 May 1805.[3] He sailed her from Cork, Ireland on 31 August 1805, with 130 male and 36 female convicts. She left at the same time as William Pitt, and would arrive at Port Jackson some two months earlier.

Tellicherry spent three days at Madeira on her way and arrived at Port Jackson on 15 February 1806. Five male convicts and one female convict had died on the voyage.

Among the convicts were Michael Dwyer, an officer and guerrilla leader in the United Irishmen, and his friends John Mernagh, Hugh Byrne, Martin Burke and Arthur Devlin. All agreed to transportation to New South Wales in lieu of trial for treason for their roles in the Irish rebellion of 1798 and subsequent resistance. Dwyer brought his wife and their eldest children with him.


Tellicherry left Port Jackson on 6 April 1806 for Bengal to load a cargo of tea.[8] When passing through the Mindoro Strait in the Philippines, "Tillicherry" was totally wrecked on 13 July,[9] on the Apo Bank.[1] The crew survived by abandoning ship into the ship's boats and making their way to Manila. A passing American ship took them to Macao where they arrived on 1 August 1806.[9][10]

Citations and references


  1. 1 2 3 4 Hackman (2001), p.202.
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 National Archives: Tellicherry, - accessed 10 November 2014.
  3. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Letter of Marque, 1793–1815, p.89;
  4. "Tellicherry". East India Company Ships. Retrieved 22 August 2012. line feed character in |work= at position 11 (help)
  5. Lloyd's List, no. 2982, - accessed 11 November 2014.
  6. Hardy & Hardy (1811), p.214.
  7. London Star, 3 March 1803, p.3.
  8. "Arrival of Vessels at Port Jackson, and their Departure". Australian Town and Country Journal, Saturday 3 January 1891, p.17. Retrieved 22 August 2012.
  9. 1 2 Lloyd's List, no.4149, - accessed 11 November 2014.
  10. Australian Shipwrecks - vol1 1622-1850, Charles Bateson, AH and AW Reed, Sydney, 1972, ISBN 0-589-07112-2 p42


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