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​© 2017 by Cartsburn Publishing

The Caird family has been connected with shipbuilding from early in the nineteenth century, the firm of Caird & Co. having first been established as an engineering concern in Cartsdyke. Mr John Caird, the founder, was the father of Principal John Caird and Edward Caird, Master of Baliol. The father of Mr Caird, with his son James, had previously carried on business as house and ship smiths at the     East Breast, next to the premises now occupied by Gourock Ropework Company. Afterwards the son, John Caird, jun., went into partnership with Mr Anderson, Port-Glasgow, as smiths and founders, their Greenock shop being in Hutcheson's Court, Cartsdyke. They removed to Arthur Street, and the firm became Caird & Co. The business originally was a general one, but the firm devoted special attention to the fitting up of sugar machinery and also to locomotives, and built the first locomotive on the Greenock and Glasgow railway. It was to the ability and enterprise of Mr James Tennant Caird, a distant relative, that much of the subsequent success of the firm was due. He was born at Thornliebank in 1816, served his apprenticeship at Greenock, and afterwards widened his experience in Glasgow and Govan with St Rollox Engine Works Co. and Randolph, Elder & Co. He returned to Greenock in 1838 as head draughtsman, was made assistant manager, and in 1852 managing partner. From 1863 he was sole proprietor of the business, and latterly took as partners his four sons Patrick, William, Robert, and Arthur. It was in 1844 that the firm began iron-shipbuilding, the first two vessels both under l00 tons. They were built in the yard in Main Street, Cartsdyke, now occupied by the Greenock Dockyard Company. The present yard in Dalrymple Street was formerly held by Mr John Scott, and on its sale about 1863 it was divided into two, Mr Caird taking the one half, Mr McNab the other. The entire ground passed into the hands of Caird & Co. in 1872, in which year also some subjects were acquired at the West Quay, the shipyard thus extending from the Albert Harbour on the west to the West Harbour on the east. Mr Caird died in 1888, and was succeeded by his sons, two of whom, Patrick and Arthur, are surviving. It was said of Mr James T. Caird that " no man during the last forty years has done so much to keep Greenock in the van of shipbuilding." " He belonged to the great revolutionary band of shipbuilders." " He was not only the shipbuilder, but also the originator of many improvements in marine engines." During his time 250 vessels were built by the firm. After his death Caird & Co. was formed into a limited liability company, with Me Patrick as chairman and Messrs William, Robert, and Arthur as directors. The company have since built a large number of steamers for the Hall Company, Nederland Company, Gulf Line, Austrian Lloyd's, Pacific Steam Navigation Company, Union Company of New Zealand, and many of the best known Peninsular and Oriental Company's intermediate and mail steamers, these including the Medina, which took the present King and Queen to the Indian Durbar, and the last mail steamer Naldera. The list of steamers built by the firm for the principal shipping companies of the world comprises the following: -Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Company, 85 steamers; North German Lloyd Company, 29; Hamburg-American Company, 25; Netherlands India Steam Navigation Company, 12; Royal Mail Steam Packet Company, 6; Pacific Steam Navigation Company, 5; British India Steamship Company, 5; Inman Steamship Company, 2. The Peninsular & Oriental steamers turned out by the firm aggregate 533,373 tons and 474,000 indicated horse-power; the cost to the company amounted to £11,000,000; and the wages in constructing those vessels, exclusive of the wages in preparing the material, were £4,000,000.

 

In 1916 Messrs Harland & Wolff acquired the shares of Caird & Co., Ltd., and have since conducted the business. Within a few months a great extension scheme was announced. The area to be included extends eastward to near Brymner Street (taking in the West Harbour), southward to a line through Shaw, Dalrymple, and Crawfurd Streets to Laird Street on the west. The district is thickly built upon, the bulk of it old property comprising bonded warehouses, grain and other stores, dwellings that are fit for demolition only, some modern tenements, shops and offices, the buildings of the Brewers' Sugar Compare, the Old West Kirk and graveyard, a portion of the Corporation Electricity Works in Hunter Place, etc. Of the comparatively modern dwelling-houses the best are two blocks erected in the Corporation improvement schemes of over forty years ago. The whole extent covers in distance about three quarters of a mile and an area of nearly forty acres. It has been officially stated that the yard is to be enormously developed and made one of the finest in the country, and that in this connection Greenock has a great future.

RM Smith

CAIRD & CO.

Back Rew, I. to r.—A. Logan. A. McDonald. D. Black, J. Mitchell. B. Greenlees, J. ValIance, R. Smith. Front Row, I. to r.—W. Farquharson, A. Mitchell, S. Mitchell, S. Lindsay, S. Crawford, R. B. Tough. R. Hunter, S. McDonald, R. McKinnon, G. Hume.

 

In the late 19th and early 20th century years, man’s outlook and sense of values differed greatly from what they are today. Immense store was set on the examples of the past which were continually referred to for guidance, and much care, diligence and thought were devoted to compiling reliable records of men and their past accomplishments, and one was considered on a sound footing by how near a parallel they could emulate those who had gone before, and who had left directing footprints for them in the sands of time.

Since those years, man’s outlook and sense of values are measured, not by contentedly emulating the achievements of his forefathers but by how much he can surpass everything which was done before. Factors little known then as they are now — ambition and competition, have so exploited this degree of habitual acceptance, and destroyed the recognition of limits, that now only a few of the old accepted standards have survived and not became obsolete.

“Production” as a word, in those days merely signified that work was being done, but precision modern methods and machinery so consistently guarantee quality, that the word “production” is almost exclusively used today to signify quantity, and man is too busy, even with his super calculating machines, compiling record totals, and straining to reach predetermined goals before the clock, that he has no time to pause, look back and compare.

It can be a tonic, however, to the hustle-wearied mind, just to step off the dizzy endless-belt conveyor for a moment, draw in a long lung full of stationary air and exhaust the static charged draught of perpetual motion from his system and sit down in a quiet place, with a copy of some of those old records, so laboriously compiled by the pioneers of his profession, and - yes, marvel at their achievements, with the equipment and gear then at their disposal. One is shocked and humbled by even a preliminary attempt to assess what THEIR PRODUCTION would have been, with modern tools and machinery.

Of course we’re proud of them, those men who broke the soil and ploughed some of the first furrows in the ever expanding fields of Engineering, and we are privileged to have this opportunity to present to our readers such a fine example of the kind of records they kept so meticulously.


Figure 1 is a reproduction of the front cover of one such record, made up in book form by Mr R.B. Tough, which not only contains a list of the engines built at Arthur Street from 1869 to 1922, but also a photograph, figure 2, of all the foremen employed there, with an accompanying list of their names and years of service—a most interesting document since many of our old hands will remember and recognise quite a few in this group.

Following this, the book contains the eight page list of all engines built in the period mentioned, with the name of the ship and with details of the type, size and number of cylinders, length of stroke, and the year built of each unit from No. 208, which was for the “Australia”, to No. 585 for the “Bendigo.” The last engine built in 1919 by Caird and Co., in Arthur Street Works, was No, 572 for the “Dundrum Castle,” completed just before these works were taken over by John G. Kincaid and Company, Ltd., who from then, until the record was compiled in 1922, built eight sets of engines, respectively, for the following ships:—”Ardmore,” “Dunkerquois,” “Cambraisien,” “Kenmare,” “Trold fos, “Laatefos,” and “Bendigo.” The eighth complete engine, No, 571, was for a ship which was still on the stocks and unnamed.

Inside the front cover, Figure 3, is a uniquely designed method of recording the autographs of each foreman appearing in Figure 2. Each signature as you can see, indicates an overall higher standard of penmanship than prevails today, due, someone humorously suggested, to the fact that more time in school could then be devoted to hand-writing, since there were only the three Rs taught — reading, ‘riting and ‘rithmetic.

The last page of this literary museum-piece, displays a photograph, obviously the copy of an original, and too undefined for reproduction, of two cut crystal vases flanking a beautiful cut crystal rosebowl (centre-piece) on an ebony stand. Below it appears the caption “PRESENTATION TO JAMES CRAWFORD, ESQ.”, but we regret having no details of the incident, although it is reasonable to assume that they were presented to mark the occasion of his retiral.

Mr R. B. Tough, who after the transfer of Arthur Street Works, came to our Drawing Office was evidently an artist of some note as well as a draughtsman. Inside the back cover he has designed an encircled shield in which the figures 1922 are inscribed at the top, between the handle- ends of two inverted torches (Olympic, not electric), the smoke from which is already shown partly obscuring this date of record, suggesting it would seem, inevitable oblivion. There were, we understand, about twenty original copies of this fine record folio. If you, reader, have one, no doubt you will prize it, but it was designed and compiled to tell a story, so why not trot it out and show it to the friends you can trust to appreciate its value, so that they, too, may learn something of “The Good Old Days.”

SHIP NAME

Alice

Fannie

Duke of Cornwall

Louisiane

un-named

Glasgow

Greenock

un-named

Water Witch

Cardiff Castle

Craignish Castle

Faugh-a-Ballagh

Sea Nymph

Culloden

Saint Patrick

Tiber

Euxine

Malta

Orion

Shamrock

Camilla

Foyle

Said Pasha

Meteor

Osprey

Laurel

Argus

Riga Lubeck

Petrel

Mongibelo

Atrato

Wye

Neva

Trave

Valdivia

Kangaroo

Etna

Rothesay Castle (iii)

Helgoland

Zebra

America

Hammonia

Borussia

Nordstjernen

Moss

Ganger Rolf

Isere

Blidah

Zampa

Sigmund Robinow

Jupiter

Algerie

Teutonia

Petropolis

Susanah

Maria

Barenquer

Almogavar

Marquez de Caxias

Austria

Saxonia

Prinzessin von Joinville

Bremen

New York

Dania

St Teodosy

un-named

Freia

Aalborg

Windsor Castle

Orion

Sirius

Monte Video

Balclutha

San Enrique

San Joaquin

Hansa

Lope de Vega

Colon

Prince Consort

America

Lord Clyde

Apollo

Germania

Alexandra

Lord Gough

Lord Clyde

City of Petersburg

Nola

Snaefell

Alfred

Roe

Earl of Carlisle

Fox

Douro

Eider

Douglas

Mary & Ellen

Stanley

Hattie

Kyles

Gyptis

Euxene

Herald

Arno

Buffalo

Llama

Bute

Hermann

Palmyra

Rio Parana

German

Servando

Pedro

Pablo

Tynwald

Deutschland

Union

Camel

Hammonia

Cimbria

Weser

Rio Uruguay

Baltimore

Berlin

Neva

Galatea

Holsatia

Westphalia

Rhein

Main

Donau

Ohio

Leipzig

Silesia

Frankfurt

Hannover

Australia

Thuringia

Konig Wilhelm I

Kronprinz Friedrich Wilhelm

Graf Bismarck

Koln

Khedive

Mirzapore

Germania

Vandalia

Pekin

Peshawur

Ananda

Strassburg

Mosel

Frisia

Malwa

Bokhara

City of Chester

Feldmarschall Moltke

Minister Roon

Franconia

Pomerania

Neckar

Oder

General Werder

Rhenania

Suevia

City of Berlin

Cape Race

Sindoro

Salak

Blair Drummond

Shuaydagone

Pyah Pekhet

Merapi

Karang

Umballa

Puttiala

Akola

Vingorla

Bromo

Gouverneur Generaal Loudon

John Schoning

Patoeuh

Ophir

Snaefell

Japara

Graaf van Bylandt

Inchgreen

Tambora

Sheila

Glen Rosa

Simla

Adela

Kaiser-I-Hind

Saxonia

Teutonia

Marinho Visconde

Ancona

Verona

Rohilla

Ville de Barcelone

Kleber

Rome

Carthage

Orion

Saigon

Kowloon

Ballaarat

Parramatta

Mona's Isle

Phra Chom Klao

Phra Chula Chom Klao

Rio Pardo

Rio Parana

Gouverneur Generaal s' Jacob

Signal

The Queen

Valetta

Massilia

Tasmania

Chusan

Guahy

Coromandel

Bengal

Morven

Dalhousie 

Orinoco

Victoria

Britannia

Peninsular

Oriental

Bombay

Hong Kong

Shanghai

Canton

Galatea

Portia

Rydal Hall

Wistow Hall

Netherby Hall

Gulf of Lions

Prinses Sophie

Prins Hendrik

Gulf of Genoa

Gulf of Bothnia

Grouse

repair

Himalaya

Australia

Gulf of Siam

Gulf of Taranto

Java

Manila

Japan

Caledonia

Koningin Regentes

Simla

Nubia

Cleopatra

Malta

Sunda

Palawan

India

Chile

Peru

Candia

Egypt

Arabia

Isis

Osiris

Colombian

Antillian

Colombia

Assaye

Sobraon

Guatemala

Persia

Plassy

Soudan

Somali

Mexico

California

Moldavia

Mongolia

Donegal

Wimmera

Kolaba

Mooltan

Delhi

Devanha

Nile

Namur

Nyanza

Nore

Marama

Salsette

Malwa

Mantua

Medina

Ballarat

Beltana

Nankin

Novara

Benalla

Nagoya

Nellore

Berrima

Borda

Kaisar-I-Hind

Kashgar

Kashmir

Naldera

X 186

X 187

X 188

X 189

X 190

P 22

PS 52

PS 53

PS 54

PS 55

P 35

PS 56

PS 57

DATE  LAUNCHED

00.00.1857

00.00.1859

00.00.1842

00.00.1862

completed 1860

completed 1841

completed 1842

circa 1842

completed 1842

03.06.1844

26.06.1844

01.01.1845

22.03.1845

26.04.1845

12.03.1846

08.08.1846

30.08.1847

11.12.1847

19.12.1846

15.05.1847

14.07.1849

00.01.1848

completed 1848

01.01.1849

completed 1848

27.05.1850

15.07.1851

completed 1851

09.04.1852

completed 1852

26.04.1853

02.09.1853

completed 1853

completed 1853

completed 1853

20.08.1853

26.08.1854

completed 1854

16.05.1854

completed 1855

02.02.1855

05.05.1855

03.07.1855

completed 1855

17.08.1855

00.05.1855

completed 1856

completed 1856

00.03.1856

completed 1856

00.05.1856

19.04.1856

04.08.1856

30.10.1856

completed 1856

completed 1856

completed 1857

31.01.1857

07.02.1857

23.06.1857

21.08.1857

06.10.1857

01.02.1858

31.03.1858

13.03.1858

completed 1858

completed 1858

23.02.1859

05.03.1859

05.05.1859

14.06.1859

18.06.1859

14.10.1859

00.03.1860

00.05.1860

16.05.1860

23.08.1861

22.04.1861

13.12.1861

completed 05.1862

25.11.1862

03.07.1862

14.08.1862

06.04.1863

completed 04.1863

02.05.1863

24.10.1863

13.06.1863

12.09.1863

22.06.1863

31.10.1863

30.01.1864

14.01.1864

26.03.1864

03.12.1864

18.08.1864

11.05.1864

21.05.1864

31.08.1864

17.08.1864

15.10.1864  by Miss Jane Miller

05.11.1864

completed 1864

03.03.1866

30.03.1865

15.04.1865

25.05.1865

15.12.1864

26.06.1865

23.12.1865

27.06.1865

08.11.1865

00.11.1865

00.11.1865

15.12.1865

17.03.1866

29.05.1866

27.10.1866

11.04.1866

08.12.1866

21.01.1867

20.03.1867

01.06.1867

03.08.1867

01.10.1867

10.02.1868

25.11.1867

09.03.1868

24.06.1868

22.07.1868

22.08.1868

17.10.1868

18.12.1868

13.02.1869

14.04.1869

18.06.1869

28.07.1869

21.04.1870

18.05.1870

06.07.1870

13.09.1870

09.11.1870

11.08.1870

07.02.1871

20.05.1871

24.12.1870

22.04.1871

20.07.1871

30.10.1871

04.11.1871

24.05.1872

20.08.1872

30.03.1872

19.10.1872

18.12.1872

29.03.1873

18.04.1873

16.06.1873

22.09.1873

26.07.1873

10.11.1873

24.12.1873

04.03.1874

18.04.1874

01.06.1874

27.10.1874

04.08.1874

30.11.1874

29.12.1874

24.11.1874

21.12.1874

27.01.1875

09.03.1875

08.04.1875

28.05.1875

08.06.1875

06.08.1875

24.08.1875

29.06.1875

18.09.1875

27.09.1875

18.12.1875

29.01.1876

27.04.1876

19.06.1876

31.07.1876

04.07.1876

17.02.1877

19.04.1877

17.05.1877

15.06.1878

13.08.1877

04.08.1878

10.12.1878

28.12.1878

12.04.1879

22.05.1879  by Miss Black

23.07.1879

27.04.1880

22.05.1880

29.06.1880

14.05.1881

24.08.1881

20.12.1881

27.10.1881

completed 1881

31.08.1882

11.11.1882

16.05.1882

27.12.1882

22.02.1883

27.03.1883

20.04.1883

27.06.1883

07.08.1883

17.11.1883

19.11.1883

14.02.1884

17.05.1884

07.08.1884

22.01.1885

13.06.1885

06.11.1885

24.03.1886

05.06.1886

13.09.1886

09.05.1887

18.08.1887

06.10.1888

05.12.1888

29.01.1889

15.04.1889

01.06.1889

26.09.1889

31.05.1889

12.06.1889

22.11.1889

08.01.1890

17.02.1890

28.03.1890

19.07.1901

13.09.1890

25.03.1891

14.05.1891

27.05.1891

27.02.1892

29.07.1892

26.01.1892

19.04.1892

07.07.1892

12.10.1892

29.07.1893

19.05.1894        by Miss Ethel Barnes

05.04.1894

13.10.1894  by Mrs. James Reid

13.12.1894   by Mrs. A.P. Lyle

14.03.1895

14.05.1895

28.06.1895

04.09.1895

15.04.1896    by Miss Mary Anne Kendall

18.06.1896

19.09.1896

07.11.1896

15.05.1897

10.11.1897

09.04.1898

06.06.1898

04.08.1898

30.09.1898

28.01.1899

07.10.1899

17.02.1900

29.04.1899

13.08.1900

25.11.1900

07.03.1901

17.05.1901

22.03.1902

21.06.1902

28.03.1903

13.08.1903

30.04.1904

19.08.1904

completed 1905

03.08.1905

14.10.1905

16.12.1905

24.05.1906

26.07.1906

04.10.1906

18.12.1906

27.06.1907

02.04.1908

10.10.1908

10.02.1909    by Miss Bessie Caird

14.03.1911

23.09.1911

24.01.1912

18.05.1912

27.07.1912

27.10.1912

22.02.1913

05.05.1913

20.09.1913

17.12.1913

28.06.1914

03.11.1914

16.02.1915

29.12.1917

25.05.1915

27.05.1915

18.06.1915

18.06.1915

23.06.1915

22.02.1916

22.03.1916

21.04.1916

26.06.1916

13.07.1916

29.01.1917

29.08.1916

22.09.1916

YARD #

-

-

-

?

72 - 91

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

8

9

10

11

12

13

14

15

16

17

18

19

20

21

22

23

24

25

26

27

28

29

30

31

32

33

34

35

36

37

38

39

40

41

42

43

44

45

46

47

48

49

50

51

52

53

54

55

56

57

58

59

60

61

62

63

64

65

66

67

68

69

70

71

92

93

94

95

96

97

98

99

100

101

102

103

104

105

106

107

108

109

110

111

112

113

114

115

116

117

118

119

120

121

122

123

124

125

126

127

128

129

130

131

132

133

134

135

136

137

138

139

140

141

142

143

144

145

146

147

148

149

150

151

152

153

154

155

156

157

158

159

160

161

162

163

164

165

166

167

168

169

170

171

172

173

174

175

176

177

178

179

180

181

182

183

184

185

186

187

188

189

193

194

195

196

197

198

199

200

201

202

203

204

205

206

207

208

209

210

211

212

213

214

215

216

217

218

219

220

221

222

223

224

225

226

227

228

229

230

231

232

233

234

235

236

237

238

239

240

241

242

243

244

245

246

247

248

249

250

251

252

253

254

255

256

257

258

259

260

261

262

263

264

266

267

268

269

270

271

272

273

274

275

276

277

278

279

280

281

282

283

284

285

286

287

288

289

290

291

292

293

294

295

296

297

298

299

300

301

302

303

304

305

306

307

308

309

310

311

312

313

314

315

316

317

318

319

320

321

322

323

324

325

326

327

328

329

330

331

332

333

334

335

336

337

338

339

340

341

342

343

War Willow

HP 10

HP 11

PC 42

PC 43

War Bracken

War Malayan

War Emu

Burgondier

Bembridge

Bathurst

Biafra

Siris

War Poplar

Dundrum Castle

Ballarat

Lobos

Balranald

Bendigo

Adda

Drechtdijk

Razmak

Rawalpindi

Rajputana

Oakbank

Grantleyhall

Lahej

Kheti

Nimoda

Saugor

Behar

358

346

347

344

345

350

351

352

353

355

354

360 / 570 Gk

356 / 571 Gk

359 / 539 Gk

357 / 572 Gk

348

580 Gk

349

585 Gk

608 Gk

593 Gk

659 Gk

660 Gk

661 Gk

685 G

646 Gk

796 Gk

800 Gk

797 Gk

801 Gk

830 Gk

cancelled circa 1919

21.04.1917

19.05.1917

07.06.1917

14.08.1917

31.10.1917

28.03.1918

29.06.1918

17.10.1918

07.12.1918

20.02.1919

29.04.1919

26.06.1919

18.08.1919

23.10.1919

14.09.1920

14.10.1920

24.02.1921

26.01.1922

25.05.1922

24.10.1922

16.10.1924

26.03.1925

06.08.1925

18.01.1926

16.06.1927

19.07.1927

31.08.1927

24.11.1927

21.02.1928

16.08.1928

HARLAND & WOLFF