On this day in 1701, Thomas Bowrey’s Worcester was being loaded with provisions and cargo on the Thames. There were two deliveries paid for on 22 January.
Ambrose Crowley supplied a total of 6,500 nails in three different sizes. At another time, Crowley supplied anchors. The nails were delivered in a cask for which the owners and freighters had to pay 1 shilling and 4 pence. All three sizes of nails were described as cleuch – an old English word for a steep valley or ravine. It is unclear how this description applied to nails but they were no doubt for the use of the ship’s carpenter for repairs and building the ship’s boat at Delagoa.
The other delivery was from Thomas Christmas, a stationer, who supplied ink, sealing wax, quills, and paper – both loose sheets and bound in books. The ink was in powder form wrapped in paper – not the most practical for a ship at sea when the paper could become damp. There were two books both bound in vellum, one described as a journal presumably for the ship’s logbook. No doubt, the loose paper was for receipts and letters and some of this must survive within Bowrey’s papers. There would be more if the ship’s papers were not seized by the Scots.
Both these receipts remind us that, when preparing for a voyage, everything needed to be taken on board – not just cargo and food but, also, all the materials that may be needed during the voyage.