On This Day: 25 October 1682

On this day in 1682, Sancho Narsa of Maddapollam sold the ketch Adventure to Thomas Bowrey, James Wheeler and Henry Alford. The ketch was small enough to navigate the ports and rivers in the East Indies.

This purchase marked Bowrey’s move from being employed by others to trading in partnership on his own account. Bowrey brought experience to the partnership. Alford had only arrived in India 15 months earlier and was working as an assistant to the East India Company warehouseman. James Wheeler was the governor of the Company’s factory at Pettipolee. For both at this stage, the Adventure offered the opportunity to build a fortune but was only a side-line to their paid employment.

For Bowrey, this was probably the moment he had been waiting for since his arrival in India 13 years earlier. It was likely that he had a half share in the venture and his investment may have taken all he had been able to save during that time because his agreement with Alford and Wheeler included him receiving a wage as the ketch’s master. As far as can be seen from the records, this was to be the last time he worked for a wage.

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