A picture of a ship

Matthew Barkley

The ships on which Matthew Barkley captained and crewed.

The Mayola 1859

The Mayola left London 28 June 1862 and arrived Arica, Peru 15 October 1862

Another Website about the Mayola arriving in Arica, Peru

The Cooleen

He had shares in the

The Drumalis (photograph)

The Drumalis

William Morrow Barkley

William Morrow Barkley died 12 February 1883. He was of "Cooleen" House Strandtown, Co. Down. His son James Morgan Barkley of Queen's Square, Belfast was also a ship owner.

The ships William Morrow Barkley owned.

The Cooleen

The Cooleen was built in Glasgow by Elder in 1876.

According to family story Thomas Johnston (died 1924) came to New Zealand, from Ireland, on the Cooleen in 1885.

The Cooleen

"The Loss of the Cooleen

I send you herewith a picture of the little barque Cooleen, of Belfast, at one time a regular and well-know trader between London and New Zealand. I am sorry I have no records of her passages between the two countries, but it is in my knowledge that she made some remarkably good runs both out and home.

The Cooleen was built about the year 1876 for and owned throughout her career by W. M. Barkley and Sons, of Belfast. For about the first ten years she was under the command of the late Captain M. Barkley, who was well known in New Zealand, where his vessel was a great favourite, and earned the proud name of the Irish Yacht.

So near, and yet, so far!

Unfortunately, like many a good ship, she came to a sudden end, with sad loss of life, while homeward bound and only a few miles from Queenstown Harbour.

At noon on Sunday, the 7th January, 1894, she sighted the Fastnet, but not being able to get a pilot, as the weather became foggy, Captain Bartlett, her commander, had the vessel put well out to sea. On the following day it blew a strong gale, but the weather still continued thick, and when the ship sighted land on that afternoon they found themselves dangerously close to shore, somewhere to the southward of Ballycottin Island -- Cork Harbour having been overrun in the thick weather. The vessel was then standing in, and after getting between Smith's Rock and the shore Captain Bartlett endeavoured to put the ship about on the other tack to reach out to sea: but the wind and the terrible sea drove her to leeward, where in a short time she struck on the rocks and kept bumping with shattering force until the masts went over the side.

Captain Bartlett then told the crew to go forward in the vessel, as this seemed the safest place, to remain there till they were rescued, and nine of the men took shelter there with him.

A wise resolution.

Mr. Barter, the second mate, however, thought it better to remain on the poop, and three of the crew stayed with him. Mountainous sees pounded the vessel, and in less than ten minutes she parted at the waist, when the forward portion immediately turned clean over, precipitating the captain and nine men into the raging sea, and all were lost. The sailmaker, one of the nine, made a gallant effort to gain the shore, and had almost got within reach of being rescued when a large floating beam, which had become detached from the wreck, struck him on the head, and he disappeared. Two coloured seamen also fought bravely for a time, but the waves exhausted them and they, too, disappeared.

Meanwhile the coastguards had arrived on the scene. With great expedition they got the rocket apparatus into operation, and succeeded in firing a line on to the poop of the wreck, to which the second mate and the three other still clung. They fastened the line to the rail, and soon, one by one, were drawn safely on to the cliff. They were at once conveyed to the village of Ballycottin, where they received every attention.

The following day there was only about thirty feet of the after part of the vessel visible on the rocks, and a portion of the bow which, strange to say, was upside down.

T. J. B." (Captain Thomas Johnstone Barkley, son of Captain Matthew Barkley)

The above article was transcribed from Sea Breezes - The P.S.N.C. Magazine., Vol. XIII, No. 113, April 1929. The original article is held in the Porter Shipping Archive and I am grateful to John Porter for sending me a copy.

Irene M. Fullarton.

A short history of Sea Breezes ...

The Cooleen arrived Lyttelton 23 September, 1881

Hawkes Bay Herald, Wednesday November 30th 1881

SHIPPING: Port of Napier -

Departure - November 29 - Cooleen, barque, for London.

Thank you to Elaine Mattsen for the above information.

The Cooleen arrived Auckland 20 July, 1882

The Cooleen arrived Wellington 19 April, 1884

The Cooleen arrived Lyttelton 19 April, 1885

The wreck of the Cooleen off Ballycotton 1894

Charles James Johnstone

Captain of the British naval frigate HMS Cornwallis from 1806.

According to a descendant of John Johnstone (married to Agnes Rea) there was a "black sheep" in the family who had an island named after him. The only one I can find in the area indicated is Johnston Atoll. It is interesting that the original Robert Johnston (died 1804) was a Gunner RN and that he had a son Charles. Also, that Robert's son Thomas (born circa 1801) named a son Charles James. If there is a connection Robert and Captain Charles James would be brothers or cousins given the time period. The Cornwallis was later named Akbar and there is some dispute as to when it was built.

The history of the Cornwallis or Akbar

According to a thesis by Ray Ward the "HMS Cornwallis (was) renamed Akbar in 1812 and used for quarantine service from 1827 to 1855 in Liverpool. In 1862 it was replaced by (the) Wellington which took her name.

Robert Johnstone

The ships Robert Johnstone built.

Dorothea Wright July 1861

This Brigantine was built for P. Wright and it was based at Belfast. Intially, it was engaged in the Coastal trade but later on it is listed for the Mediterian.

Dawn April 1864

Catherine Fullarton August 1864

This brig was built for Robert's long-time friend Alexander Fullarton of Ayr, Scotland and it was most likely named after his daughter Catherine who was born on the 6th of November 1856. It was engaged in the Mediterian trade.

The Catherine Fullarton sailed for Adelaide from Mauritius before 29 May 1870.

The Catherine Fullarton arrived Sydney, NSW 30 December, 1870

Jane Millin 1867

This schooner was built for Millin and Co. and was based in Belfast and engaged in the Coastal trade.

The information above is from an article about Paul Rodgers by Michael McCaughan titled 'Paul Rodgers, an Ulster Shipbuilder, and his Welsh Connections' which was published in Martime Wales, No. 7, 1983 and the Lloyds Shipping Register.

Thomas Johnstone

The ships Thomas Johnstone owned.

Eleanor Johnstone

(Click on "Shipwrecks" on the left-hand navigation bar.)

This ship was named after his mother Eleanor Glenfield.

John Porter

The ships John Porter built.

William Porter

The ships William Porter built.

The Mayola

The Mayola left London 28 June 1862 and arrived Arica, Peru 15 October 1862

Another Website about the Mayola arriving in Arica, Peru

The Iredale/Porter Shipping site

The Bessfield

The Bessfield was named after William Porter's farm "Bessfield". According to family story part of the New Zealand family travelled to Ireland on the Bessfield in 1898. They became Cape Horners Society members as she went around Cape Horn.

Paul Rodgers

Links about Paul Rodgers.

The Carrickfergus Rowing Club

I believe that the reference to "Shipyard" on the above Website would be to the house and not the actual shipyard.

The ships Paul Rodgers built.

Accrington Lass July 1874

Result 1893

The Result at the First World War

Photos of the Result

Fanny Crossfield 1880

Mary Miller 1881

Mary Armstead 1881

Louie Bell 1882

Annie Crossfield 1883

Shoal Fisher 1883

Edith Crossfield 1885

George B. Balfour 1885

Annie Park 1886

Creek Fisher 1890

Pool Fisher 1892

Ford Fisher 1892

The ships Paul Rodgers bought.

William and Sarah

Maid of Irvine


© Irene M. Fullarton 2002 - 2009

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Updated 3 June, 2009.

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