On This Day: 14 July 1690

Yesterday’s post was about the regular maintenance of the Duck yacht. Today’s document from 1690, is the agreement between John Freame, shipwright of Wapping, and Thomas Bowrey, described as a mariner from Wapping, for the building of the Duck.

She was to be twenty-nine feet long and have a breadth of nine feet. The agreement sets out the specification in some detail. She would be finished in two months and cost £65 (a little over £10,000 today).

One of the witnesses to the agreement gave his address as Wapping Dock and it was possibly that the yacht was built there. This was a short way down river from Wapping New Stairs where Bowrey’s grandfather probably had his ship yard when Bowrey was a child and about a mile from where Bowrey was now living.

During the two months it took to build the Duck did Bowrey wander down to the river to watch her progress?

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