This week's prompt features an aerial view of river and boats. I have an ideal match, with views on high from England's east and west coasts - with a diversion across mountains.
Here is an aerial view taken as we were coming into land at Newcastle Airport, with a clear picture of the River Tyne, its north and south piers. and on the left South Shields, the home of my husband's ancestors. The first purpose-built lifeboat in the world was built in South Shields in 1789.
River Tyne, with Norwegian ships in the background.
Donaldson, White and Moffet ancestors were master mariners, sailing out of South Shields. Extended family members were in related occupations as a caulker, seaman, river policemen, shipwright, roper, ship's carpenter and marine engine fitter.
Tyne & Wear Archives were invaluable to providing further information on the families' working lives, with added details traced in the mariner records held at the National Archives at Kew. I discovered the ships that GGGG grandfather Robert Donaldson and GG grandfather Matthew White
sailed on around Europe - many of which came to a sad end - though not under their captaincy. I also became acquainted with the names of different sailing vessels - barque or barc, brig, sloop, smack and snow - an illustration of the diverse routes that family history can take you.
This painting (below) of the brig ""Brotherly Love" hangs in South Shields Museum. and a better quality image can be found HERE,
In the 1861 Census, GGG grandfather John Moffet was listed as master pf "The Brotherly Love" sailing off Flamborurgh Head in the North Sea. The crew of eight included three young apprentices, four seamen, and a mate, with most born in South Shields.
Great great great grandfather John Moffet in a Napoleonic pose - one of the few old photographs of the family that have survived.
A long-held family story recollected a photograph (sadly lost) of a White ancestor in a top hat in the uniform of the River Tyne police. A silver uniform button (left) is still held by the family.
The Nominal Roll of the Tyne River Police (held at Tyne & Wear Archives) provided some answers, finding that two sons of Matthew (senior), had been members of the river police force – but both with rather a chequered history.
Henry White joined 9th January 1882 and brother Matthew June 1896. The Police Defaulters Book recorded on 11th June 1889.their misconduct in the same incident - "for assaulting a seaman A. W. Hanson and other irregularities, whilst off duty". Henry was fined 2/6 and transferred to Walker Division at his own expense. The Nominal Roll of 1904 noted his age as 42 and that he had 22 years of service, with a wage of 29/6. Matthew was fined 2/6 and transferred to the Newcastle Division at his own expense. However he resigned a few months later.
A journey from England's north east coast across to the north west and more scary heights and scary views over the sea from the high point in my home town - Blackpool Tower.
|Blackpool Tower from the North Pier|
Until the 19th century, Blackpool was just a small hamlet. It rose to prominence with the building of the railway linking it to the mill towns of industrial Lancashire and Yorkshire and soon became England's most popular seaside holiday destination. The unique Blackpool Illuminations were first switched on in 1879 to extend the season well into late autumn.
You can get a cranky lift to the top of the Tower and stand on a scary glass floor to view the town below. I never did this as a child.
|View over the North Pier|
|Looking towards the North Shore and North Promenade|
The view down onto the Winter Gardens - the white building with the arched roof.
Opened in 1878, the Winter Gardens is a large entertainment complex including a theatre, ballroom and meeting facilities, once the regular venue for the annual party political conferences. This is where my parents first met in 1936.
Fast forward the decades and below are memories of us flying over the Alps into Innsbruck Airport for a holiday in the Austrian Tyrol.
This is not for the faint-hearted air traveller. You feel that if you could put your hands out of the plane window, you could touch the peaks.
To discover more scary heights from Sepia Saturday bloggers, click HERE
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