Independent Publishers Group Logo

Sign up today...
for featured titles, special offers, bestsellers, and more, in your inbox!

Subscribe to receive special offers, monthly books suggestions, seasonal selections, and more!

Waterford's Maritime World
Waterford's Maritime World

Waterford's Maritime World

The ledger of Walter Butler, 1750-1757



288 Pages, 6.75 x 9.5

Formats: Cloth

Cloth, $60.00 (US $60.00) (CA $81.00)

Publication Date: July 2022

ISBN 9781801510165

Rights: US & CA

Four Courts Press (Jul 2022)

Not Yet Published. Estimated release date: July 2022


In October 1750 Walter Butler, a Waterford sea captain, purchased a ship in the port of Bordeaux and had it refitted there before loading it with wine, brandy, and other French produce for his home port. Renamed the Catherine after his wife, the ship spent the winter in Waterford where Butler and his men prepared for a voyage to Newfoundland. She departed for the fishery in April 1751 with "passengers" (seasonal migrants) and salt provisions, returning home in the fall. Over the next six years The Catherine completed three more round trips to Newfoundland and voyages to London, Tenby, Dublin, Cork, Lisbon, Cadiz, and Seville. The brig was captured off St. Lucar by a French privateer in spring, 1757. Butler's account of the Catherine survives (Prize Papers, High Court of Admiralty). The ledger contains the most detailed description of a Waterford ship, shipmaster, and crew for the eighteenth century. It is a record of everyday economic exchanges with merchants, traders, artisans, and labourers in Waterford city and in the ports and fishing harbours visited by the Catherine overseas, in England, Wales, France, Iberia, and in faraway Newfoundland.

Author Biography

John Mannion holds a BA and MA from University College Dublin, and a PhD from the University of Toronto. Now retired, he was a professor of Geography at Memorial University of Newfoundland in St John's from 1969 to 2005. Much of his research and publications focus on patterns of Irish participation in the international cod fishery from 1700, transatlantic shipping and migration, the Irish provisions trade, and the role of merchants and shipowners in recruiting servants in south-east Ireland to prosecute the fishery.