New Parks Canada Plaque Acknowledges National Significance of Doukhobors at Veregin, Saskatchewan

For Immediate Release – August 8, 2009

On July 18, 2009, the Historic Sites and Monument Board of Canada (HSMBC) unveiled a commemorative plaque at the National Doukhobor Heritage Village (NDHV) in Veregin, Saskatchewan, acknowledging the national significance of the Doukhobors at Veregin and proclaiming its affiliation with the family of national historic sites.

Opening address by Irene LeGatt of Parks Canada at the unveiling ceremony. Photo courtesy Patti Negrave.

The unveiling ceremony was presided over by Irene LeGatt of Parks Canada. It opened with the Lord’s Prayer recited by John Cazakoff of Kamsack and the singing of O Canada by Sonia Tarasoff of Canora. Official greetings from the Government of Canada and the NDHV followed. The official party was then introduced, which consisted of Constable Brett Hillier of the Kamsack RCMP detachment; Garry Breitkreuz, Yorkton-Melville MP on behalf of Jim Prentice, Minister of Environment and Minister Responsible for Parks Canada; Keith Tarasoff of Canora, Chairman of the NDHV; Eileen Konkin of Pelly, an 18-year member of the NDHV Board; and Laura Veregin of Benito, a 20-year NDHV Board member.

The official party unveiled the 2’ x 3’ bronze plaque, which has inscriptions in English, French and Russian. The inscription reads as follows:

“Established in 1904 by followers of the communal ideals of Peter V. Verigin, this settlement served as the administrative, distribution and spiritual centre for Canada’s Doukhobor communities. The original Prayer Home, machine shed, grain elevator and foundations of the old store remain to bear witness to this community’s first period of settlement, as well as to their collective toil and utopian ideals. The striking design and scale of the Prayer Home reflect the authority and vision of Peter Verigin as well as the spiritual and cultural significance of this place for Doukhobors.”

Unveiling of the historic plaque. (l-r) Irene LeGatt, Parks Canada; Garry Breitkreuz, MP; Keith Tarasoff, NDHV Chairman; Brett Hillier, Kamsack RCMP Detachment. Photo courtesy Patti Negrave.

After the plaque was unveiled, Irene LeGatt read its inscription in English and French, and Laura Veregin read its Russian version.

“The Canadian Government is proud to welcome the Doukhobors at Veregin to the family of national historic sites,” stated Garry Breitkreuz, MP. “Today’s commemoration will help Canadians appreciate the impact of early immigration policies on the development of the Canadian West. As with other immigrants, the Doukhobors embarked on their journey to Canada with dreams of freedom and prospects of peace. The story of the Doukhobors is an inspirational one of hardship and perseverance, determination and faith, and is an important chapter of our history,” Breitkreuz said.

Eileen Konkin then provided a brief overview of the 300+ year history of the Doukhobors, and their historic significance in Veregin.

Garry Breitkreuz, MP discusses the national significance of the Doukhobors at Veregin. Photo courtesy Patti

Negrave.

The program concluded, as it had began, with hymns sung by the Heritage Choir, which had many of its members dressed in traditional Russian costumes. Lunch was then served and the dignitaries and attendees were escorted on a tour of the village.

“Today’s event is a milestone for the National Doukhobor Heritage Village,” Keith Tarasoff noted. “Its not often that we have an honour of this statute to celebrate.”

Fleeing religious persecution in Russia, approximately 7,400 Doukhobors immigrated to Canada in 1899. With the aid of Leo Tolstoy and sympathetic groups like the Quakers, 750,000 acres were secured in Western Canada for the Doukhobors. In exchange, the Canadian Government gained skilled agriculturalists to help populate and develop its western frontier. In addition to their agricultural background, the Doukhobors brought with them strong beliefs in communalism, pacifism, and rejection of institutional religion. “Toil and Peaceful Life” was the central tenant of the Doukhobor philosophy.

Eileen Konkin, NDHV Board member from Pelly, SK provides an overview of the 300+ year history of the

Doukhobors in Russia and Canada. Photo courtesy Patti Negrave.

As with other immigrant groups, the Doukhobors encountered hardships, but persevered and established many industrious villages and enterprises. Central among these communities was the village of Veregin. Established in 1904, the original Veregin settlement – of which the Prayer Home, machine shed, grain elevator and foundations of the old store survive – was the administrative, distribution and spiritual centre for the region during the first period of Doukhobor settlement in Canada. An industrial hub as well, at its height Veregin boasted a brick yard, brick store, store house, four grain elevators, machine shed and a flourmill. Veregin retained its important role in Doukhobor society until 1931 when spiritual and administrative headquarters were relocated to British Columbia. Its subsequent decline marked the end of the first phase of Doukhobor settlement.

The spectacular Prayer Home reflects the settlement’s importance to the Doukhobors as a religious and cultural centre, as well as the authority and the vision of the leader of the Doukhobors, Peter V. Verigin. Restored in 1980, the Prayer home was declared a Provincial Heritage Property in 1982. Doukhobors at Veregin was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 2006.

Laura Verigin, NDHV Board member from Benito, MB reads the Russian inscription of the Parks Canada historic

plaque. Photo courtesy Patti Negrave.

Since its creation in 1919, the HSMBC has played a leading role in identifying and commemorating nationally significant places, persons and events – such as the Doukhobors at Veregin – that make up the rich tapestry of our country’s cultural heritage. Together these places, persons and events comprise the System of National Historic Sites in Canada. The HSMBC is an expert advisory body on historical matters. On the basis of its recommendation, the Government of Canada has designated more than 900 national historic sites, almost 600 national historic persons and over 350 national historic events. The HSMBC considers whether a proposed subject has had a nationally significant impact on Canadian history, or illustrates a nationally important aspect of Canadian history.

The placement of a HSMBC commemorative plaque – such as the one unveiled in Veregin – represents the official recognition of historic value. It is one means of educating the public about the richness of our culture and heritage, which must be preserved for future generations.

NDHV Board and members gather in front of Parks Canada historical plaque. Photo courtesy Patti Negrave.

For additional information or inquiries about the Doukhobors at Veregin or other national historic sites, visit the Parks Canada – National Historic Sites of Canada website.

Index to Doukhobor Ship Passenger Lists

by Jonathan J. Kalmakoff

Ship passenger lists constitute the official record of Doukhobor immigration to Canada. Compiled on board by the ship’s purser and examined by customs and immigration authorities upon arrival, they are an important source of genealogical and historical information. The following is an index of over 101 ship lists containing Doukhobor passengers who arrived in Canada in between 1898-1899, 1902-1906, 1909-1914 and 1925-1932. Search chronologically to find the ship name, port and date of departure, port and date of arrival and number of Doukhobor passengers. Then consult the Library and Archives Canada microfilm copies or online images of the original ship passenger lists.

Index – 1898-1899 1902-1906 1909-1914 –   1925-1932 –   Notes

 

Arrivals in 1898-1899

The first (and by far the largest) wave of Doukhobor immigration took place in 1898 – 1899 when over 7,500 Doukhobors from the Caucasus sailed from the Black Sea port of Batum to the Canadian ports of Quebec and Halifax. These chartered trans-Atlantic voyages were funded by Russian novelist Count Leo Tolstoy and by the Society of Friends (Quakers) in England and America. It was the largest mass migration in Canadian history.

Ship Departure Port and Date Arrival Port and Date Passengers LAC Microfilm and Online
Vancouver Liverpool 01.09.98 Quebec 10.09.98 10/357 C-4542 View Image
Lake Huron * Batum 23.12.98 Halifax 23.01.99 2,140 C-4519 View Image
Lake Superior * Batum 04.01.99 Halifax 27.01.99 1,997 C-4519 View Image
Lake Superior Larnaca 18.04.99 Quebec 09.05.99 1,036 C-4542 View Image
Lake Huron Batum 12.05.99 Quebec 06.06.99 2,286 C-4542 View Image
Lake Superior Liverpool 08.07.99 Quebec 20.07.99 56/670 C-4542 View Image
Dominion Liverpool 08.12.99 Halifax 18.12.99 1/194 T-494 View Image

*Note: these ship passenger lists are incomplete. See notes below for details.

Arrivals in 1902-1906

A second wave of Doukhobor immigration took place in 1902 – 1906. During this time, over 285 Doukhobors took coastal ships from Russia to Western European ports, where they boarded transatlantic ships bound for Canada. These were Doukhobors detained in Russia until their terms of exile or military service had expired. These voyages were funded by the Doukhobor community in Canada. 

Ship Departure Port and Date Arrival Port and Date Passengers LAC Microfilm and Online
Ionian Liverpool 26.12.01 St. Johns 05.01.02 11/106 T-505 View Image
Furst Bismark Hamburg 02.08.02 New York 16.08.02 1/358 T715-293 N/A
Lake Ontario Liverpool 30.09.02 Quebec 10.10.02 2/678 T-481 View Image
Lake
Champlain
Liverpool 06.12.02 St. Johns 17.12.02 1/845 T-505 View Image
Bavarian Liverpool 03.07.03 Quebec 11.07.03 2/1,719 T-481 View Image
Blucher Hamburg 05.08.03 New York 16.08.03 1/573 T715-497 N/A
Ionian Liverpool 04.02.04 Halifax 13.02.04 4/260 T-497 View Image
Lake Erie Liverpool 16.02.04 St. Johns 29.02.04 2/594 T-505 View Image
Belgravia Hamburg 25.03.04 New York 10.04.04 3/900 T715-445 N/A
Umbria Liverpool 23.07.04 New York 31.07.04 4/1,350 T715-480 N/A
Lake Erie Liverpool 16.08.04 Quebec 26.08.04 3/608 T-482 View Image
Bremen Bremen 18.08.04 New York 30.08.04 1/1,519 T715-489 N/A
Bavarian Liverpool 25.08.04 Quebec 02.09.04 3/1,148 T-483 View Image
Montezuma Antwerp 25.08.04 Quebec 07.09.04 3/116 T-483 View Image
Mount Temple Antwerp 27.10.04 Quebec 09.11.04 1/566 T-484 View Image
Corinthian Liverpool 25.11.04 Halifax 05.12.04 1/318 T-498 View Image
La Bretagne Le Havre 08.05.05 New York 22.05.05 16/1,060 T715-577 N/A
Canada Liverpool 20.07.05 Quebec 28.07.05 2/1,000 T-485 View Image
Southwark Liverpool 31.08.05 Quebec 09.09.05 182/649 T-485 View Image
Dominion Liverpool 07.09.05 Quebec 17.09.05 3/521 T-485 View Image
Sarmatian London 09.10.05 Quebec 20.10.05 2/95 T-486 View Image
Canada Liverpool 26.10.05 Quebec 04.11.05 4/319 T-486 View Image
La Savoie Le Havre 29.10.05 New York 11.11.05 10/1,055 T-513 View Image
Amerika Hamburg 20.06.06 New York 01.07.06 2/1,410 T-518 View Image
Friedrich 
Der Grosse
Bremen 08.12.06 New York 20.12.06 18/21 T-518 View Image
Saint Louis Southampton 09.02.07 New York 17.02.07 6/1,370 T-518 View Image
Mount Temple Antwerp 22.05.07 Quebec 02.06.07 1/1,092 T490 View Image

Arrivals in 1909-1914 

The third major wave of Doukhobor immigration took place between 1909 and 1914. During this time, over 895 Doukhobors from the Caucasus took coastal ships from mainland Russia to Western European ports. There they boarded trans-Atlantic ships bound for Canada. This wave was prompted by fear of conscription in the impending war between Germany and Russia.

Ship Departure Port and Date Arrival Port and Date Passengers LAC Microfilm and Online
America Naples 30.06.09 New York 13.07.09 21/2,650 T-4699 View Image
Kaiserin
Auguste
Victoria
Hamburg 04.11.09 New York 13.11.09 3/2,996 T-4699 View Image
Corsican Liverpool 16.06.10 Quebec 23.06.10 45/1,527 T-4768 View Image
Montfort Antwerp 15.06.10 Quebec 25.06.10 2/543 T-4768 View Image
Prinz Adalbert Hamburg 10.06.10 Quebec 27.06.10 85/1,443 T-4768 View Image
Tunisian Liverpool 30.06.10 Quebec 08.07.10 3/1,135 T-4769 View Image
Kaiserin
Auguste
Victoria
Hamburg 14.07.10 New York 23.07.10 1/20 T-4700 View Image
Tunisian Liverpool 15.12.10 Halifax 24.12.10 2/258 T-4738 View Image
Campanello Rotterdam 15.12.10 Halifax 27.12.10 7/152 T-4738 View Image
Montfort Antwerp 08.02.11 St. Johns 20.02.11 29/355 T-4823 View Image
Pisa Hamburg 17.04.11 Quebec 02.05.11 19/875 T-4774 View Image
Albania Southampton 02.05.11 Quebec 16.05.11 11/539 T-4775 View Image
Royal George Bristol 17.05.11 Quebec 24.05.11 16/793 T-4776 View Image
Ausonia Southampton 16.05.11 Quebec 26.05.11 6/1,073 T-4776 View Image
Canada Liverpool 03.06.11 Quebec 11.06.11 63/1,261 T-4777 View Image
Laurentic Liverpool 10.06.11 Quebec 17.06.11 1/1,145 T-4777 View Image
Teutonic Southampton 17.06.11 Quebec 25.06.11 3/704 T-4778 View Image
Barcelona Hamburg 30.06.11 Quebec 12.07.11 207/722 T-4778 View Image
Teutonic Liverpool 11.07.11 Quebec 21.07.11 3/810 T-4779 View Image
Canada Liverpool 29.07.11 Quebec 06.08.11 1/997 T-4779 View Image
Pisa Hamburg 23.10.11 Quebec 11.11.11 9/544 T-4783 View Image
Lake Erie Glasgow 16.12.11 Halifax 26.12.11 4/164 T-4741 View Image
Grampian Liverpool 22.12.11 Halifax 30.12.11 13/392 T-4741 View Image
Mount Temple Antwerp 20.12.11 St. John 04.01.12 1/337 T-4825 View Image
Californian ** Liverpool 05.04.12 Boston 19.04.12 6 T-4692 N/A
Megantic Liverpool 27.04.12 Quebec 06.05.12 6/1,643 T-4784 View Image
Ultonia Southampton 23.04.12 Halifax 06.05.12 140/1,929 T-4744 View Image
Ascania Southampton 02.05.12 Quebec 14.05.12 2/1,205 T-4785 View Image
Ausonia Southampton 16.05.12 Quebec 26.05.12 18/816 T-4785 View Image
Laurentic Liverpool 08.06.12 Quebec 15.06.12 4/1,145 T-4787 View Image
Canada Liverpool 15.06.12 Quebec 24.06.12 75/1,043 T-4787 View Image
Ausonia Southampton 28.06.12 Quebec 05.07.12 15/676 T-4788 View Image
Teutonic Liverpool 29.06.12 Quebec 06.07.12 6/766 T-4788 View Image
Laurentic Liverpool 06.07.12 Quebec 14.07.12 35/800 T-4788 View Image
Royal George Bristol 10.07.12 Quebec 17.07.12 4/1,084 T-4788 View Image
Canada Liverpool 13.07.12 Quebec 22.07.12 3/645 T-4789 View Image
Royal Edward Avonmouth 24.07.12 Quebec 31.07.12 5/1,030 T-4789 View Image
Teutonic Liverpool 27.07.12 Quebec 03.08.12 10/992 T-4789 View Image
Canada Liverpool 10.08.12 Quebec 19.08.12 3/1,235 T-4790 View Image
Ionian London 06.11.12 Quebec 18.11.12 1/274 T-4794 View Image
Royal Edward Bristol 11.11.12 Halifax 19.11.12 1/446 T-4745 View Image
Corsican Liverpool 20.12.12. Halifax 28.12.12 1/354 T-4745 View Image
Ultonia Southampton 22.04.13 Quebec 08.05.13 9/1,563 T-4795 View Image
Czar Libau 17.07.14 New York 29.07.14 1/353 T-4721 N/A

**Note: there is no extant passenger list for this ship. These Doukhobor passengers are listed as “miscellaneous Boston arrivals” and are attributed to this ship based on anecdotal evidence.

Arrivals in 1925-1932

Doukhobor immigration to Canada decreased substantially with the outbreak of the Great War in 1914.  It was halted altogether on June 9, 1919 when the Parliament of Canada passed Order-in-Council P.C. 1204 prohibiting the landing in Canada of any Doukhobor, Hutterite or Mennonite because of their “peculiar habits, modes of life and methods of holding property”. By the time the Order was repealed on March 1, 1925, the Soviet regime had placed rigid restrictions on emigration outside the U.S.S.R. The trickle of immigration which followed was largely limited to Returning Canadians and members of the Verigin family.

Ship Departure Port and Date Arrival Port and Date Passengers LAC Microfilm and Online
Canopic Bremen 10.11.22 New York 22.11.22 2/1,300 T715-3220 N/A
Antonia Southampton 06.06.24 Quebec 13.06.24 1/1,700 T-15160 N/A
Cameronia Glasgow 13.12.24 Halifax 23.12.24 12/1,365 T715-3588 N/A
Arabic Southampton 09.02.25 Halifax 17.02.25 1/1,700 T-14801 View Image
Ausonia Southampton 19.02.25 Halifax 01.03.25 1/1,037 T-14801 View Image
Empress of Scotland Southampton 02.05.25 Quebec 09.06.25 1/2,466 T-14715 N/A
Mauretania Southampton 08.12.25 New York 14.12.25 3/1,756 T-15224 N/A
Western World Buenos Aires 29.07.26 New York 17.08.26 5/560 T715-3905 N/A
Montclare Liverpool 12.11.26 Quebec 20.11.26 1/1,168 T-14729 View Image
Andania Liverpool 24.06.27 Quebec 03.07.27 1/1,706 T-14734 View Image
Berengaria Southampton 10.09.27 New York 16.09.27 1/4,594 T-14931 N/A
La Bourdonnais Bordeaux 15.09.27 Halifax 25.09.27 7/43 T-14811 View Image
La Bourdonnais Bordeaux 23.06.28 Halifax 03.07.28 4/500 T-14815 View Image
Aquitania Southampton 30.06.28 Halifax 07.07.28 2/3,263 T-14815 N/A
Roussillon Bordeaux 07.07.28 Halifax 17.07.28 79/241 T-14815 View Image
Duchess of
Bedford
Liverpool 27.07.28 Quebec 02.08.28 1/836 T-14746 View Image
Suffren Le Havre 26.07.28 Halifax 03.08.28 19/183 T-14816 View Image
La Bourdonnais Bordeaux 18.08.28 Halifax 28.08.28 16/500 T-14816 View Image
Roussillon Bordeaux 15.09.28 Halifax 25.09.28 9/69 T-14816 View Image
Paris Le Havre 24.10.28 New York 30.10.28 4/2,145 T715-4374 N/A
Ascania Southampton 14.03.30 Halifax 23.03.30 2/442 T-14824 View Image
Roussillon Le Havre 27.03.30 Halifax 08.04.30 2/130 T-14825 View Image
Roussillon Bordeaux 15.07.30 Halifax 26.07.30 1/65 T-14826 View Image
Stuttgart Bremen 21.01.32 Halifax 31.01.32 6/41 T-14829 N/A

Passenger List Information

In 1899, ship passenger lists provided the following information for each passenger: date of embarkation, name, age, gender, whether a head of a household on board, number persons in the family, profession, calling or occupation, nation or country of birth, births at sea, deaths, place of ultimate destination. The amount of information required by the government increased over the years. By 1918, the forms generally included for each passenger: amount of money in hand, name, age, gender, marital status, previous time in Canada and details, intention to settle, ability to read and write, country of birth, race of people, destination (post office and province), occupation in old country, intended occupation in Canada, past work as a farmer or labourer, religious denomination, means to travel inland. Passenger lists may also include various markings markings, codes, and annotations written beside each passenger. For example, such annotations may indicate if the passenger was deported, detailed, quarantined or hospitalized.

Accuracy of Information

Ship passenger lists may contain false and misleading data. For example, patronymics or family nicknames are sometimes recorded instead of official surnames. In some lists, the nationality of Doukhobor passengers is mistakenly recorded as Polish or German. In other lists, the religion of Doukhobor passengers is mistakenly recorded as Russian Orthodox, Greek Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Greek Catholic or Jewish. All passenger list information should be cross-referenced with other material to confirm accuracy.

Completeness of Records

The ship passenger lists for over 3,200 Doukhobor immigrants are missing or incomplete. In particular, the passenger list for the S.S. Lake Huron, which arrived in Halifax on January 10, 1899, was lost in Winnipeg, Manitoba by Immigration Branch officials and is presumed destroyed. Also, the ship’s purser on board the S.S. Lake Superior, which arrived in Halifax on February 17, 1899, recorded only 899 of the 1,997 Doukhobor passengers.

If your Doukhobor family immigrated to Canada in 1899 but does not appear in the ship passenger lists above, then by process of elimination, they probably sailed aboard the first voyage of the SS Lake Huron or the SS Lake Superior. As indicated above, these ship passenger lists are missing or incomplete. If they immigrated from Tiflis province, Russia, they probably sailed aboard the SS Lake Huron. If they immigrated from Elizavetpol or Kars province, Russia, they probably sailed aboard the SS Lake Superior. 

Spelling and Legibility

The names recorded in passenger lists are the original Russian, pre-Canadianized versions of names. Furthermore, they were written down by the ship’s purser phonetically the way that they sounded. Therefore, do not expect to find your Doukhobor ancestor’s name spelled as it is today; realize that your immigrant ancestor was probably illiterate and even if he or she could read Russian, they would not be able to recognize the written name since it was written in English. Researchers must be able to recognize alternate spellings for the surnames they are looking for. 

Worn and torn pages, faded or smudged ink, poor handwriting, and improper focus or exposure for microfilming all affect legibility of ship passenger lists, making them difficult to decipher. Sometimes pages may be microfilmed out of order or missing altogether.

How to Obtain Copies

Library and Archives Canada (LAC) holds copies of the original passenger lists of ships arriving at major Canadian ports for the period 1865-1935. Microfilm copies (see above for microfilm numbers) may be obtained directly or through interlibrary loan from LAC. Many libraries, archives and LDS Family History Centers across Canada also hold microfilm copies of LAC ship passenger lists. As well, electronic copies (see above for links) may be accessed online at the LAC Canadian Genealogy Centre website.

Indexes

The following indices have been prepared for Doukhobor ship passenger lists: 

  • Kalmakoff, Jonathan. Index to Doukhobor Ship Passenger Surnames. This online index contains Doukhobor surnames extracted from ship passenger lists for the period 1898 to 1932. By searching for a surname, you will find the name of the ship(s) on which that surname was listed. Then use the Index to Doukhobor Ship Passenger Lists (this page) to locate the original ship passenger lists.
  • Lapshinoff, Steve & Jonathan Kalmakoff. Doukhobor Ship Passenger Lists, 1898-1928  (Crescent Valley: self-published, 2001). ISBN 0-9689266-2-2. This 154 page book contains 5,196 names of Doukhobor passengers who sailed to Canada from Russia between 1898 and 1928 aboard 29 different ships. Includes the name, age, sex, ship, date of departure, date of arrival, port of departure, port of arrival and intended destination of each Doukhobor passenger. Full bibliographic references and index. 

Ports of Departure and Arrival

In 1899, Doukhobors in the Caucasus and Cyprus departed from the ports of Batum and Larnaca, respectively. After 1899, Doukhobor immigrants took coastal ships from mainland Russia to Western European ports, where they boarded trans-Atlantic ships bound for Canada. Most departed through the English ports of Liverpool, Southampton, Bristol, Avonmouth, Glasgow and London. Some Doukhobor immigrants departed through the German ports of Hamburg and Bremen. Still others departed through the French ports of Bordeaux and Le Havre, the Dutch port of Rotterdam, the Flemish port of Antwerp or the Italian port of Naples. The number of Doukhobor passengers that departed from each port is as follows: 

Port of Departure Passengers % of Total
Batum 6,423 72.6
Larnaca 1,036 11.7
Liverpool 509 5.6
Hamburg 328 3.7
Southampton 211 2.3
Bordeaux 116 1.2
Le Havre 51 .53
Antwerp 35 .39
Bremen 21 .23
Naples 21 .23
Bristol 21 .22
Glasgow 16
Rotterdam 7 .07
Avonmouth 5 .05
Buenos Aires 5
London 3 .02
Libau 1 .01

Halifax, open year-round, was the most frequently-used port of entry by Doukhobor immigrants arriving in Canada. The next most-used port was Quebec, which was open from May to November. The port of St. Johns also welcomed Doukhobor immigrants, but at much lower levels. Not all immigrants bound for Canada came through Canadian ports. Some Doukhobor immigrants arrived through the American ports of New York and Boston, spending their first few days in North America travelling through the United States en route to Canada. The number of Doukhobor passengers that arrived at each port of entry is as follows: 

Port of Arrival Passengers % of Total
Halifax 4,469 50.3
Quebec 4,257 48.1
New York 99 .98
St. Johns 43 .48
Boston 6 .06

Ship Descriptions

For those seeking information on the vessels that brought their Doukhobor ancestors to Canada and the United States, visit the Index of Doukhobor Ship Descriptions by Jonathan J. Kalmakoff. Search this index alphabetically by ship name to learn about the physical dimensions and capacity, builders, launches, shipping lines, shipping routes and schedules, name changes, wreck and salvage data, and other information for over 67 Doukhobor immigrant ships. Also included are ship photos and links to other sites of interest.

Passenger Diaries and Memoirs

First person writings are among our best sources for understanding the immigration experience. The majority of Doukhobor immigrants to Canada, however, were illiterate and did not record their memories of these events. Fortunately, several exceptional narratives of their Atlantic crossing exist, in the form of voyage diaries, travel journals, memoirs and letters written by the Russian sympathizers who accompanied them.

The Tolstoyan educator and director Leopold A. Sulerzhitsky wrote a dramatic and inspiring diary of his voyages with the first (SS Lake Huron) and fourth (SS Lake Superior) parties of Doukhobors to Canada in 1899: see Sulerzhitsky, L.A. To America With the Doukhobors (Regina: University of Regina, 1982). As well, Sergei L. Tolstoy, Lev Tolstoy’s son, set down a detailed memoir of his voyages with the second (SS Lake Superior) and third (SS Lake Huron) parties of Doukhobors to Canada in 1899: see Donskov, Andrew (ed). Sergej Tolstoy and the Doukhobors: A Journey to Canada (Ottawa: University of Ottawa, 1998). Doukhobor sympathizer Dr. Vera M. Velichkina also published her reminisces of her voyage with the third (SS Lake Huron) party of Doukhobors in 1899: see “With the Doukhobors to Canada” in Woodsworth, John (ed). Russian Roots & Canadian Wings (Ottawa: Penumbra Press, 1999). These accounts record, in extraordinary depth, the hardships and endurances of the Doukhobor immigration to Canada, as witnessed and experienced by their authors.

Terminology and Abbreviations

  • Alien. A person who was not a British subject or a Canadian citizen.
  • Deported. See “Rejected”.
  • First Class. The most expensive passenger accommodations on a ship.
  • Landed Immigrant. A person who has been legally admitted to Canada for permanent residence.
  • Purser. Ship’s officer in charge of provisions, dispatches, accounts and compiling passenger lists. The purser compiled the passenger list during the voyage. Passengers were typically listed alphabetically, by ticket number, or in the order in which they boarded the ship. 
  • Quarantine. Originally when a ship arriving in port was suspected of being infected with an infectious disease, its cargo and crew were obliged to forego all contact with the shore for a period of several days to several weeks, depending on the disease. Following a general medical examination, ship, passenger and cargo were fumigated and disinfected. Passengers were also vaccinated. Hundreds of Doukhobor immigrants were quarantined at the Immigration Stations at Grosse Isle, Quebec and Lawlor’s Island, Nova Scotia to isolate and prevent the spread of small pox, measles and diphtheria. Several Doukhobors died in quarantine.

    Note that no general quarantine records exist separate from ship passenger lists. However, some hospitalization records exist for those passengers who were hospitalized while in quarantine. For microfilm copies of Grosse lsle Quarantine Hospital and Quebec Immigration Hospital records, see National Archives of Canada RG 29, Vol. 768, File 412-12-19. See also the Index of Doukhobors in the Grosse Isle Hospital Registers for an online index of Doukhobor passengers hospitalized while in quarantine at the Grosse Isle Quarantine Station. 

  • Rejected. Permission refused by an immigration official for an individual to enter Canada.
  • Released. Person released from quarantine, hospitalization or medical examination and permitted to enter Canada.
  • R.M.S. This abbreviation has various meanings including Royal Mail Ship, Royal Mail Steamer, Royal Merchant Ship.
  • Returning Canadianor Ret’d Canadian. A returning Canadian resident.
  • Second Class. A caliber of accommodations on a passenger ship, less roomy and elaborate than first class. Also referred to as “cabin class”.
  • Steerage. With few exceptions, the Doukhobors sailed to Canada in steerage class. The term “steerage” was synonymous with the hardships of trans-Atlantic emigration as passengers were packed into dangerous quarters and each was allotted a small berth that served as bed and storage place. It was the only class most Doukhobor emigrants could afford and was literally next to the ship’s steering equipment, below the water line.
  • S.S. Abbreviation for Steam Ship.
  • Third Class. See “Steerage”.

Bibliography

  • Donskov, Andrew (ed). Sergej Tolstoy and the Doukhobors: A Journey to Canada (Ottawa: University of Ottawa, 1998).
  • Drolet-Dube, Doris. (Parks Canada) Memo to J. Kalmakoff Re: Quarantined Doukhobors, 1911, December 8, 1999.
  • Lapshinoff, Steve & Jonathan Kalmakoff. Doukhobor Ship Passenger Lists, 1898-1928 (Crescent Valley: 2001).
  • Lewchuk, Gary. Recalling the Titanic in ISKRA No.1850 (Grand Forks: U.S.C.C., March 25, 1998).
  • Library and Archives Canada, Microfilm Reel Nos. C-4519, C-4542, C-4784, C-7341, T-481, T-482, T-483, T-484, T-485, T-486, T-494, T-497, T-498, T-505, T-513, T-518, T-4692, T-4699, T-4721, T-4738, T-4741, T-4744, T-4745, T-4768, T-4769, T-4774, T-4775, T-4776, T-4777, T-4778, T-4779, T-4783, T-4784, T-4785, T-4787, T-4788, T-4789, T-4790, T-4794, T-4795, T-4823, T-14715, T-14729, T-14734, T-14746, T-14801, T-14811, T-14815, T-14816, T-14825, T-14826, T-14829, T-14931, T-15160 and T-15224.
  • Library and Archives Canada, Immigration Branch, Central Registry Files (RG 76, Volumes 183 to 185, Parts 1 to 14) Microfilm Reel Nos. C-7337 to C-7341.
  • Library and Archives Canada, Sessional Documents. Annual Report of Dr. G.E. Martineau, Superintendant of the Quarantine Station of Grosse Isle and different Emigration Agents’ Reports (RG 29, Volume 768, File 412-13-19; RG 17, Volume 2434).
  • O’Gallagher, M., Grosse Ile: Gateway to Canada 1832-1937 (Quebec: Carraig Books, 1984).
  • Popoff, Eli. Memo to J. Kalmakoff Re: Doukhobors on the 1905 Voyage of the SS Southwark, October 15, 1999.
  • Sulerzhitsky, L.A. To America With the Doukhobors (Regina: University of Regina, 1982).
  • Tarasoff, Koozma. New Information on S.S. Lake Huron in ISKRA No.1865 (Grand Forks: USCC, January 13, 1999).
  • Tarasoff, Koozma. The Doukhobors at the Quarantine Station on Lawlors Island in ISKRA No.1869 (Grand Forks: USCC, March 10, 1999).
  • Tarasoff, Koozma. Parks Canada Unveils Interpretive Panel on Grosse Ile in ISKRA No.1878 (Grand Forks: USCC, September 15, 1999).
  • U.S. National Archives and Records Administration, Microfilm Reel Nos. T715-293, T715-497, T715-445, T715-480, T715-489, T715-577, T715-3220, T715-3588, T715-3905, T715-4374 and 547.

This index was reproduced by permission in ISKRA Nos.1896, 1897, 1903, 1912, 1934, 1936, 1940, 1948, 1958, 1960 & 1967 (Grand Forks: USCC, 2000-2005).

Doukhobor Immigrant Ship Descriptions

by Jonathan J. Kalmakoff

The following index is established to assist family researchers seeking information about the ships that brought their Doukhobor immigrant ancestors to Canada. Search alphabetically by ship name to learn about the physical dimensions and capacity, builders, launches, shipping lines, shipping routes and schedules, name changes, wreck and salvage data, and other information for over 68 Doukhobor immigrant ships. Also included are ship photos and links to other sites of interest.

Index  – C –   D –   E –   F –   G –   I –   K –   L –   M –   P –   R –   S –   T –   U –   V –   W

– A –

Albania

The “Cairnrona” was built by Swan & Hunter, Wallsend-on-Tyne in 1900 as the “Consuelo” for the Wilson Line of Hull. She was a 6,025 gross ton ship, length 461.5ft x beam 52.1ft, one funnel, four masts, twin screw and a speed of 12 knots. She had accommodation for 13-1st class passengers. Launched on 3/2/1900, she sailed on her maiden voyage from Hull to New York on 5/8/1900. She made her last voyage for Wilson’s when she left Hull on 1/3/1908 for Boston and New York. In 1909 she was sold to the Thomson Line, renamed “Cairnrona” and refitted to carry 50-1st and 800-3rd class passengers and with a tonnage of 7,640 tons. She made her first voyage from London to St John, New Brunswick in Jan 1910 (arr. 25/1/1910) and a further voyage (arr. 11/3/1910). In April 1910 she suffered fire in her coal bunkers while off Beachy Head in the English Channel and over 700 passengers were transferred temporarily to the Furness Withy cargo steamer “Kanawha”. The fire was extinguished and she returned to London and sailed again on 16th April for Quebec and Montreal. She commenced her last voyage on 8/4/1911 when she left St John, New Brunswick for London. In 1911 she was sold to Cunard and renamed “Albania”. She commenced the first Cunard voyage to the St Lawrence when she left London on 2/5/1911 for Southampton, Quebec and Montreal. Her last voyage on this service commenced 17/10/1911 and in 1912 she was sold to the Bank Line (Andrew Weir & Co) and renamed “Poleric”. She was scrapped in 1930.

SS Albania.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

America

The “America” was a 8,996 gross ton ship, length 476.5ft x beam 55.7ft, two funnels, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 16 knots. Accommodation for 30-1st, 220-2nd and 2,400-3rd class passengers. Built by Cantieri Navale Riuniti, Muggiano (engines by Wallsend Slipway Co), she was launched for La Veloce on 01/11/1908 and was used on their New York service. Purchased by Navigazione Generale Italiana in 1912, she started her first Genoa – Naples – New York – Philadelphia voyage on 23/04/1912. On 24/12/1916 she started her 34th and last Genoa – New York sailing until after the war, and resumed on 09/02/1919 when she left Genoa for Marseilles and New York. Her last Genoa – Naples – New York voyage commenced 19/11/1923 and she then made two Genoa – Naples – Boston sailings in March and April 1924 before transferring to the South American service. Scrapped in 1928.

Amerika

The “Amerika” of 1912 was built by Harland & Wolff, Belfast in 1905 for the Hamburg America Line. She was a 22,225 gross ton ship, length 669ft x beam 74.3ft, two funnels, four masts, twin screw and a speed of 18 knots. There was passenger accommodation for 386-1st, 150-2nd, 222-3rd and 1,750-4th class. She carried a crew of 577. Launched on 20/4/1905, she was the largest ship in the world at the time. On 11/10/1905 she sailed from Hamburg on her maiden voyage to Dover, Cherbourg and New York. In 1907 she was rebuilt to 22,621 tons and on 4/10/1912 collided with and sank the British submarine B.2 off Dover with the loss of 15 lives. On 9/5/1914 she started her last Hamburg – Southampton – Cherbourg – New York crossing and on 10/6/1914 she commenced Hamburg – Boulogne – Southampton – Boston sailings. Her last voyage to Boston commenced on 14/7/1914 (arr 24/7/1914) and she remained in Boston until April 1917 when she was seized by the US authorities, renamed “America” and was used as an army transport. Between 1917-18 she made 9 trooping voyages to France and on 14/7/1918 collided with and sank the British ship “Instructor” with the loss of 16 lives. On Oct.15th 1918 she sank at Hoboken pier during coaling due to bad trim with the loss of 6 lives, and was refloated on 21/11/1918. She was laid up in September 1919 and on 20/1/1920 she sailed from New York via Panama to Vladivostock (arr 20/4/1920) and embarked 6,500 troops for Trieste via Suez. On 8/9/1920 she arrived in New York with 2,666 emigrants from the Mediterranean. In 1921 she was converted to oil fuel and chartered to US Mail with accommodation for 225-1st, 425-2nd and 1,500-3rd class passengers and on 25/6/1921 commenced sailing between New York, Plymouth, Cherbourg and Bremen and commenced her third and last voyage on this service on 27/8/1921. In late 1921 she went to the United States Line and commenced her first voyage for these owners on 28/9/1921 when she left New York for Plymouth, Cherbourg, Bremen, Southampton, Cherbourg, Queenstown (Cobh) and New York. She was reconditioned in June 1923 to 21,114 tons and with passenger accommodation for 692-cabin and 1,056-3rd class. On March 10th 1926 she was gutted by fire while being refitted at Newport News and was rebuilt to 21,329 tons, and with passenger accommodation for 835-cabin, 516-tourist and 3rd class. She resumed New York – Plymouth – Cherbourg – Bremen sailings on 21/3/1928 and on 25/8/1931 commenced her last Hamburg – Southampton – Cherbourg – New York (arr 4/9/1931) crossing. She was then laid up in the reserve fleet at Chesapeake Bay until 1940 when she became a US army accommodation ship for 1,200 troops at St John’s NF. In January 1941 she was renamed “Edmund B.Alexander” and became a troop transport between New Orleans and Panama. At this time she was only capable of 10 knots and in 1942-3 was rebuilt with one funnel, her mast heights reduced and her engines converted by the Bethlehem Steel Corp, Baltimore to give her a speed of 17 knots. She then operated between New York and Europe with accommodation for 5,000 troops. In March 1946 she was altered to accommodate military dependents (904 adults and 314 children) between New York and Europe. In 1949 she was laid up at Baltimore and in 1951 in the Hudson River. In January 1957 she was sold to the Bethlehem Steel Corp, towed to Baltimore and scrapped.

SS Amerika. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

Andania

13,950 gross tons, length 538ft x beam 65.3ft, one funnel, two masts, twin screw, speed 15 knots, accommodation for 484-cabin class and 1,222-3rd class passengers. Launched on 01/11/1921 by Hawthorn, Leslie & Co., Hebburn-on-Tyne for Cunard Line, Liverpool, she started her maiden voyage on 01/06/1922 when she sailed from Southampton for Quebec and Montreal. On 18/11/1924 she transferred to Hamburg – Southampton – Halifax – New York sailings and commenced her last New York voyage on 26/10/1926. Her first Liverpool – Greenock – Belfast – Quebec – Montreal voyage started on 29/04/1927 and she continued these sailings until 1939 when she was converted to an Armed Merchant Cruiser. On 16/06/1940 she was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine UA (Cohausz) about 230 miles WNW of the Faroe Islands with no loss of life.

SS Andania. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

Antonia

The “Antonia” was a 13,867 gross ton ship, length 519.9ft x beam 65.3ft, one funnel, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 15 knots. Accommodation for 500-cabin and 1,200-3rd class passengers. Built by Vickers Ltd, Barrow, she was launched for the Cunard Line on 11/05/1921. Her maiden voyage started on 15/06/1922 when she sailed from London for Southampton, Quebec and Montreal. In July 1927 she was refitted to carry cabin, tourist and 3rd class passengers and on 14/04/1928 started her first Liverpool – Greenock – Belfast – Quebec – Montreal sailing. Converted to an Armed Merchant Cruiser in 1940, she was sold to the British Admiralty in March 1942, converted to a repair ship and renamed “Wayland”. Scrapped at Troon, Scotland in 1948.

SS Antonia.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Arabic

The “Berlin” was built by A.G.Weser of Bremen in 1908 for Norddeutscher Lloyd (North German Lloyd), and was the third vessel of that name they owned. She was a 17,324 gross ton vessel, length 590.2ft x beam 69.7ft, two funnels, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 17 knots. There was accommodation for 266-1st class, 246-2nd class and 2,700-3rd class passengers. Launched on 7/11/1908, she sailed from Bremen on 1/5/1909 on her maiden voyage to Southampton, Cherbourg and New York. On 15/5/1909 she made her first voyage from New York to Naples and Genoa and on 14/5/1914 made her last run Genoa – Naples – New York. On 4/6/1914 made first voyage New York – Bremen and 18/7/1914 last voyage on this service. In August 1914 she was converted to a minelayer and it was on 26/10/1914 that one of her mines sank the British battleship HMS AUDACIOUS. On 17/11/1914 she was interned at Trondhiem, Norway and in 1919, surrendered to Britain and was used as a troopship to India under P&O management. In 1920 she was sold to White Star Line, refitted and renamed “Arabic”. On 7/9/1921 she left Southampton for one round voyage to Cherbourg and New York and on 20/9/1921 was transferred to New York – Naples – Genoa service, making her last run from Genoa – Naples – Boston – New York in October 1923. She was then refitted to carry 500-cabin class and 1,200-3rd class passengers and on 16/8/1924 commenced the Hamburg – Southampton – Cherbourg – Halifax – New York service until making her last voyage on 11/10/1926. She then went to the Red Star Line and was put onto their New York – Plymouth – Cherbourg – Antwerp run from 30/10/1926 – 27/12/1929. On 11/1/1930 she went back to White Star Line and their New York – Cobh – Liverpool run and was refitted to carry 177-cabin, 319-tourist and 823-3rd class passengers. She made five round voyages on this service, commencing the last one on 16/7/1930 and was then laid up. She was scrapped in 1931 at Genoa.

SS Arabic.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Ascania (1911)

The Ascania – one of two ships in the Cunard Line fleet by this name – was built in 1911 by Swan, Hunter & Wigham Richardson in Newcastle, originally as the “Gerona” for the Thompson Line, but was taken over before completion by the Cunard Line as the “Ascania”. Her tonnage was 9,111 tons gross and 5,699 tons net. Her dimensions were 466 ft x 56 ft. There was accommodation for 200 1st class passengers and 1500 3rd class passengers. She was wrecked in 1918 off Cape Ray.

SS Ascania. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

Ascania (1923)

Built for the Cunard SS Co by Armstrong Whitworth & Co, Walker-on-Tyne, she was a 14,013 gross ton ship, overall length 538ft x beam 65.3ft, one funnel, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 15 knots. Accommodation for 500-cabin and 1,200-3rd class passengers. Launched on 20/12/23, she started her maiden voyage when she left London (cargo) for Southampton (22/05/25), Quebec, and Montreal. In July 1927 her accommodation was altered to cabin, tourist and 3rd class, and in Mar.1939 to cabin and 3rd class. Her last prewar voyage started when she left London (cargo) for Southampton (12/08/39), Quebec, Montreal and Liverpool. She was then converted to an Armed Merchant Cruiser and in 1943 became a troopship. In Dec.1947 she resumed commercial service and sailed from Liverpool to Halifax. Refitted in Autumn 1949 to 14,440 gross tons and with accommodation for 200-1st and 500-tourist class passengers. She resumed the Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal service on 21/04/50. On 30/09/55 she transferred to Southampton – Havre – Quebec – Montreal sailings, and commenced her last voyage on this service on 26/10/56. She then made a Southampton – Cyprus voyage as a troopship and on 30/12/56 sailed from Southampton for Newport, Mon, where she was scrapped.

Aquitania

Built by John Brown & Co, Glasgow in 1913 for the Cunard Steamship Co. She was a 45,647 gross ton ship, overall length 901.5ft x beam 97ft (274,77m x 29,56m), four funnels, two masts, four screws and a speed of 23 knots. There was accommodation for 597-1st, 614-2nd and 2,052-3rd class passengers. Launched on 21/04/1913, she started her maiden voyage between Liverpool and New York on 30/05/1914. Her third and last voyage before the Great War, started on 11/07/1914 and she was then fitted out as an Armed Merchant Cruiser. In August 1914 she was slightly damaged in collision near the Irish coast, returned to Liverpool and was laid up until 1915. At various times between 1915 and 1919 she was used as a troopship, hospital ship and laid up. Her first voyage after the Armistice started 19/02/1919 when she was used to repatriate troops from Liverpool and Brest to New York and she made three voyages on this service. She resumed commercial voyages on 14/06/1919 when she left Southampton for Halifax and New York. Between December 1919 and July 1920 she was converted from coal to oil burning and resumed the Liverpool – New York route on 17/07/1920. On 14/08/1920 she transferred to the Southampton – Cherbourg – New York service and in 1927 was refitted to carry 1st, 2nd, tourist and 3rd class passengers. In October 1931 she became a 1st, tourist and 3rd class ship. In October 1931 she made the first ever North Atlantic turnround in two weeks when she left Southampton for New York on 7th October and again on 21st October. In February 1936 she became cabin, tourist and 3rd class and started her last peacetime voyage between Southampton and New York on 23/08/1939. Between 1939 and 1948 she served as a troopship and on 25/05/1948 started her first Southampton – Halifax voyage with war brides, later with emigrants, making 25 round voyages on this service. Her last sailing started 14/11/1949 when she left Southampton for Halifax and she made a total of 443 round voyages on the North Atlantic. She was scrapped at Faslane, Scotland in 1950.

SS Aquitania.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Ausonia

7,907 gross tons, length 450.6ft x beam 54.2ft, one funnel, four masts, twin screw, speed 12 knots, accommodation for 37-1st and 1,000-3rd class passengers. Launched on 18/08/1909 by Swan, Hunter & Wigham Richardson, Wallsend-on-Tyne (engines by Palmers Co., Ltd, Jarrow) as the “Tortona” for the Thomson Line, she sailed on 22/10/1909 from Middlesbrough for Quebec and Montreal. On 20/11/1909 she left Montreal for Quebec, Naples, Genoa and Leghorn and in March 1910 made her first Naples – Portland voyage. She later sailed between Naples, Quebec and Montreal and between London, Quebec and Montreal. In 1911 she was sold to the Cunard SS Co and renamed “Ausonia”. Used on their new London – Southampton – Quebec – Montreal service until August 1914 when she was chartered to Anchor Line and made four Glasgow – Moville – New York voyages after which she returned to Cunard’s Canada service. On 30/05/1918 she was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U.55 in the North Atlantic with the loss of 55 lives.

SS Ausonia.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

– B

Barcelona

Built in 1896 by Harland & Wolff, Belfast as the “Arabia” for the Hamburg America Line, her details were – 5,446 gross tons, length 398.3ft x beam 49ft, one funnel, two masts, single screw and a speed of 13 knots. There was capacity for 20-1st and 1,100-3rd class passengers. Launched on 21/11/1896, she sailed on her maiden voyage from Hamburg for Boston, Philadelphia and Baltimore on 17/3/1897. On 8/5/1897 she commenced the first of three Hamburg – Montreal sailings and subsequently sailed between Hamburg and New York or Philadelphia. She started her last Hamburg – New York voyage on 12/5/1899 and was then sold to Sloman of Hamburg and renamed “Barcelona”. She resumed Hamburg – New York sailings for her new owners on 5/7/1899, and in May 1903 was chartered back to Hamburg America Line. They eventually repurchased her from Sloman in 1907 and she continued North Atlantic voyages until 16/5/1914 when she started her last Hamburg – Baltimore sailing. In June 1914 she started her first New York to the Mediterranean crossing, on route to the Black Sea and was seized by Italy in 1915. Renamed “Ancona”, and used by Italian owners until 1924 when she was scrapped.

SS Arabia aka Barcelona. Courtesy RootsWeb.

Bavarian

The “Bavarian” was a 10,376 gross ton ship, length 501.1ft x beam 59.3ft, one funnel, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 16 knots. There was accommodation for 240-1st, 220-2nd and 1,000-3rd class passengers. Built by Wm Denny & Bros, Dumbarton, she was launched for the Allan Line on 11/-5/1899. Her maiden voyage started on 24/08/1899 when she sailed from Liverpool for Quebec and Montreal. After one further voyage on this route, she was used as a transport ship to South Africa during the Boer War. She resumed Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal voyages on 9/10/1902 and was wrecked near Montreal on 3/11/1905 with no loss of life and was broken up where she lay.

SS Bavarian.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Belgravia

The steamship “Belgravia” – the first of two steamships of this name owned by the Hamburg-America Line – was built by Blohm & Voss, Hamburg (ship #133), and launched on 10/05/1899. 10,155 tons; 152,72 x 18,96 meters/501.1 x 62.2 feet (length x breadth); 1 funnel, 2 masts; twin-screw propulsion, quadruple-expansion engines, service speed 12 knots; accommodation for 300 passengers in 2nd class, 2,400 in steerage; crew of 150. Intended for the Hamburg-America Line’s Hamburg-Baltimore service, which was not a success. 16/08/1899, maiden voyage, Hamburg-Baltimore; subsequently Hamburg-New York or Baltimore, or Genoa-Naples-New York. 1900, 10,982 tons. 9/02/1905, last voyage, Hamburg-Baltimore. 1905, refitted by Blohm & Voss; 11,397 tons. 31/05/1905, to the Russian Navy; renamed RIGA. 1906, taken over by the Black & Asow Sea Steamship Co, Odessa. 1919, taken over by the state maritime agency Sovtorgflot and renamed “Transbalt”. 1920-1923, hospital ship. 13/06/1945, accidentally torpedoed and sunk by U.S. submarine Spadefish, which mistook her for a Japanese ship, in the La Perouse Strait.

SS Belgravia. U.S. Library of Congress.

Berengaria

The “Imperator” was a luxury liner. She was a 51,969 gross ton ship, length 882.8ft x beam 98.3ft, three funnels, two masts, four propellers and a speed of 22 knots. There was accommodation for 908-1st, 592-2nd, 962-3rd and 1,772-4th class passengers. Built by AG Vulcan, Hamburg, she was launched on 23/05/1912 for the Hamburg America Line. She started her maiden voyage from Hamburg to Southampton, Cherbourg and New York on 11/06/1913 and her last voyage on this route started on 8/07/1914 after which she was laid up at Hamburg. Surrendered to the USA in 1919, she was allocated to Britain as war reparations in 1920 and managed by Cunard Line. After rebuilding, she was used on the Southampton – Cherbourg – New York service and was purchased by Cunard in 1921 and renamed “Berengaria”. She continued the same service until 1938 when, on 3rd March she was damaged by fire at New York. She then sailed to Southampton without passengers, and arrived at Jarrow in December where she was partly dismantled. In 1946 she was towed to Rosyth where she was scrapped.

SS Berengaria.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Blucher

See entry for the “Suffren”.

SS Blucher. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

Bremen

The steamship “Bremen” was built by F. Schuchau, of Danzig, for the North German Lloyd Line, and launched on 14/11/1896. 10,525 tons; 160,04 x 18,38 meters (525.1 x 60.3 feet, length x beam); 2 funnels, 2 masts; twin screw propulsion, service speed 15 knots; accommodation for 230 1st-, 250 2nd-, and 1,850 3rd-class passengers. 5/06/1897, maiden voyage, Bremen- Southampton-New York. 20/10/1897, first voyage, Bremen-Suez Canal-Australia. Interchangeable between the New York and Australia services. 30/06/1900, damaged in a fire at the North German Lloyd dock at Hoboken, New Jersey, along with the other North German Lloyd steamships Saale, Main and Kaiser Wilhelm Der Grosse; almost 300 lives lost (including firefighters), 12 on the Bremen. 11/10/1900, after provisional repairs, returned to Germany; refitted and lengthened to 167,78 meters (550.5 feet), 11,570 tons, by Vulcan, of Stettin. 12/10/1901, resumed Bremen-Southampton- New York service. 27/09/1911, last voyage, Bremen-Australia (16 roundtrip voyages). 20/06/1914, last voyage, Bremen-Southampton-New York; laid up at Bremen during World War I. 4/04/1919, surrendered to Britain; name unchanged; operated, on behalf of the Shipping Controller, by the P & O Line on its Australia service. 1921, sold to the Byron Steamship Co, and renamed “Constantinople”  5/12/1921, first voyage, Constanza-Constantinople-Piraeus- New York. 4/09/1923, last voyage, Constanza-Constantinople-Piraeus-New York (8 roundtrip voyages). 1924, renamed “King Alexander”. 24/05/1924, first voyage, Piraeus-Patras-New York. 21/04/1925, last voyage, Piraeus-Patras-New York (6 roundtrip voyages). 1929, scrapped at Venice.

SS Bremen.  U.S. Library of Congress.

– C

Californian

6,223 gross tons, length 448ft x beam 54ft, one funnel, four masts, triple expansion engines powering a single screw, speed 14 knots, accommodation for 47 passengers in one class and 55 crew members. Built by Caledon Shipbuilding and Engineering Company Ltd., Dundee, she was launched on 26/11/1901 for the Leyland Line. Her maiden voyage started 31/01/1902 when she sailed from Dundee for New Orleans. In April 1902, she was chartered to Dominion Line for five Liverpool – Portland sailings before being returned to Leyland Line and transferred to Liverpool – Le Havre – New York – Boston sailings for the next ten years. On 15/04/1912 she was in the vicinity of the Titanic when it sank but did not respond to her distress signals. The subsequent inquiry into the “Californian Incident” held that the Californian’s crew had seen Titanic and her rockets she sent up, but deliberately ignored the sinking ship. The Californian continued normal service until World War I when the British government took control of the ship. The ship was torpedoed and sunk by a German submarine on 09/11/1915, 61 miles (98 km) southwest of Cape Matapan, Greece with the loss of one life.

SS Californian. U.S. Library of Congress.

Cameronia

The “Cameronia” was built in 1919 by Wm Beardmore & Co Ltd, Glasgow for the Anchor Line of Glasgow. She was a 16,365 gross ton ship, length 552.4ft x beam 70.4ft, one funnel, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 16 knots. There was accommodation for 265-1st, 370-2nd and 1,100-3rd class passengers. Launched on 23/12/1919, the installation of the final parts of her passenger accommodation were delayed due to a strike and she had to be towed to Cherbourg for completion. She commenced her maiden voyage from Glasgow to Liverpool and New York on 11/5/1921 and between 1921-1924 she made several similar Cunard-Anchor Line voyages. In October 1925 she rescued the crew of the burning US Coastguard cutter “CG 128” off New York and in November of the same year collided with the Norwegian steamer Hauk in the Clyde. In January 1926, one voyage had to be abandoned off Ireland due to steering gear failure and she was forced to put back to Glasgow for repair. In August of that year she missed collision with the Cunard liner Samaria by only six feet in dense fog. She was refurbished in 1929 to carry 290-cabin, 431-tourist and 698-3rd class passengers. In December 1932 the ship suffered an influenza epidemic and 400 passengers were confined to their beds. It is reported that the ship’s doctor made 500 visits a day to his patients. Between December 1934 and October 1935 the ship was laid up at Glasgow, and from then until April 1936 was used as a troopship to the Far East carrying a total of over 16,000 personnel. In 1936 she was refitted again and on 10/7/1936 resumed the Glasgow – New York service. In 1937 she attended the Spithead Naval Review for the coronation of King George VI and on 05/09/1939 left Glasgow and became the first British ship to enter New York after the outbreak of war. She made 11 unescorted transatlantic voyages until she was requisitioned as a troopship in December 1940. In January 1941 she trooped 3,000 men to Suez via the Cape and then shuttled between Alexandria and Greece, mainly with New Zealanders. In 1942 she took part in the training and run up to the North African landings (Operation Torch) and in November, took part in the landings. She was hit by an aerial torpedo in December 1942 with the loss of 17 lives, but reached Bone, Algeria. She returned to Gibralter for repair and thence to the Clyde. In June 1943 she resumed service and participated in carrying the Canadian Tank Division from Malta to Sicily and in June 1944 was the largest troopship to take part in the Normandy landings. In August 1945 she was derequisitioned after carrying a total of 163,789 troops over a total distance of 321,323 miles. Laid up as ‘worn out’ at 25 years of age, she was brought out of retirement in July 1948 and refitted by Barclay Curle at Elderslie for use as an Australian emigration ship, with capacity for 1,266 passengers. On 1/11/1948 she commenced the first of 11 UK-Australia voyages. On 21/1/1953 she was sold to the Ministry of Transport and renamed “Empire Clyde” and in March 1958 was scrapped at Newport, Mon.

SS Cameronia. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

Campanello

The “Campanello” was a 9,001 gross ton ship, built in 1901 by Palmers Co Ltd, Jarrow-on-Tyne. Her details were – length 470ft x beam 56.8ft, one funnel, four masts, twin screw and a speed of 13 knots. There was capacity for 70-1st and 2,200-3rd class passengers. Launched on 29/8/1901 as the “British Empire” for British Shipowners Co, she sailed for the Phoenix Line between Antwerp and New York as a cargo ship. In 1906 she was purchased by the Italian owned Navigazione Generale Italiana, fitted with passenger accommodation and renamed “Campania”. She commenced her first Genoa – Naples – Palermo – New York voyage on 7/3/1907 and her last on 17/5/1909. In 1910 she was chartered to the British owned Northwest Transport and started her first Hamburg – Rotterdam – Halifax – New York voyage on 16/2/1910. She made one further sailing on 5/4/1910 from Rotterdam to Halifax and New York and was then sold by NGI to Canadian Northern Steamships, who chartered her to their subsidiary Uranium Steamship Co. On 21/5/1910 she started her first Rotterdam – Halifax – New York voyage for these owners, and commenced her third and last sailing on this route on 13/8/1910. Renamed “Campanello”, she resumed the same service on 22/9/1910 and started her last Rotterdam – Halifax – New York voyage on 9/7/1914. In October 1914 she transferred to Avonmouth – Quebec – Montreal sailings. In 1916, the fleet and goodwill of the Canadian Northern and Uranium SS Co were bought by Cunard, the ship was renamed “Flavia” and continued Avonmouth – Canada sailings. On 24/8/1918 she was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U.107 off Tory Island, Northern Ireland.

SS Campania aka Campanello.  Courtesy The ShipsList www.theshipslist.com.

Canada

The “Canada” was a 8,806 gross ton ship built by Harland & Wolff, Belfast in 1896 for the Dominion Line. Her details were – length 500.4ft x beam 58.2ft, one funnel, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 15 knots. There was accommodation for 200-1st, 200-2nd, and 800-3rd class passengers. She was launched on 14/5/1896 and sailed from Liverpool on her maiden voyage to Quebec and Montreal on 1/10/1896. After two round voyages, she was transferred on 23/12/1896, to the Liverpool – Boston service. From November 1899 to late 1902, she was used as a transport ship for the Boer War, and on 19/3/1903 she went on the Liverpool – Halifax – Boston run. At this time she was rebuilt to a tonnage of 9,413 tons and on 22/4/1903 she resumed the Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal service. In November 1909 she was further altered to carry 463-2nd and 755-3rd class passengers and on 22/8/1914 commenced her last voyage from Liverpool to Quebec and Montreal, being used on the return passage to carry part of the Canadian Expeditionary Force to Europe. In 1914 she was used as an accommodation ship for German prisoners and between 1915 – 1918 was used as a transport ship. In November 1918 she resumed the Liverpool – Portland service until 13/8/1926, when she commenced her last voyage from Liverpool to Quebec and Montreal. She was scrapped in Italy in 1926.

SS Canada. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

Canopic

The “Canopic” was built in 1900 for the Dominion Line as the “Commonwealth” by Harland & Wolff, Belfast; this was a 12,097 gross ton ship, length 578.3ft x beam 59.3ft, one funnel, two masts, twin screw and a service speed of 16 knots. There was accommodation for 250-1st, 250-2nd and 800-3rd class passengers. Launched on 31/5/1900, she sailed from Liverpool on her maiden voyage to Boston on 4/10/1900. In November 1901 she made the first of three Boston – Naples – Genoa round voyages and on 10/4/1902 resumed Liverpool – Boston sailings. She commenced her last voyage on this service on 5/11/1903 and then went to the White Star Line when they took over Dominion Line’s Boston and Mediterranean services. Renamed “Canopic”, she resumed Liverpool – Boston voyages on 14/1/1904 and later the same month commenced Boston – Naples – Genoa sailings. On 23/8/1914 she started her first New York – Naples – Genoa – Boston – New York voyage, and arrived in Boston on her last crossing from Genoa and Naples on 30/3/1918. On 6/2/1919 she commenced her first Liverpool – Boston – New York voyage and on 27/2/1919 resumed New York – Mediterranean voyages. She made her last Genoa – Naples – Boston – New York voyage in October 1921 and on 13/4/1922 transferred to the Liverpool – Halifax – Boston route with cabin and 3rd class passengers. On 13/5/1922 she started the first of six Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal sailings and on 10/11/1922 transferred to the Bremen – Southampton – Halifax – New York service. Her last Hamburg – Southampton – Halifax – New York sailing was on 4/5/1924 and in September 1924 she made a single Liverpool – Philadelphia (arr.29/9/1924) round voyage. She started her final voyage on 20/3/1925 when she left Liverpool for Halifax and Portland and in October of that year was scrapped at Briton Ferry.

SS Canopic. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

Corinthian

The “Corinthian” of 1907 was the second ship of that name owned by the Allan Line of Liverpool. Built in 1900 by Workman, Clark & Co Ltd, Belfast, she was a 6,227 gross ton ship, length 430ft x beam 54.2ft, one funnel, two masts, single screw and a speed of 13 knots. There was accommodation for 50-1st, 150-2nd and 400-3rd class passengers. Launched on 19/3/1900 she left Liverpool on her maiden voyage to Quebec and Montreal on 24/5/1900. On 23/5/1903 she transferred to the Glasgow – Quebec and Montreal service and in 1908 she was rebuilt to 7,333 tons with accommodation for 280-2nd and 900-3rd class passengers. In April 1908 she commenced her last Glasgow – Quebec – Montreal voyage and on 9/5/1908 sailed on her first run from Montreal to Quebec and London. She left London for Quebec and Montreal on 10/9/1914 and on the return voyage was used as a Canadian Expeditionary Force troopship. She later continued on the London – Canada service and in 1917 went to Canadian Pacific when they took over Allan Line. On 21/11/1918 she commenced her first voyage after the armistice from London to St John, New Brunswick but on 14th Dec. she was wrecked in the Bay of Funday with no loss of life.

SS Corinthian. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

Corsican

The “Corsican” was built by Barclay, Curle & Co.Ltd, Glasgow in 1907 for the Allan Line of Liverpool. She was a 11,419 gross ton vessel, length 500.3ft x beam 61.2ft, one funnel, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 16 knots. There was accommodation for 208-1st, 298-2nd and 1,000-3rd class passengers. Launched on 29/4/1907, she sailed on her maiden voyage from Liverpool to St John, New Brunswick on 31/10/1907. In 1908 she was chartered to Canadian Pacific and commenced sailing for them on the same service in January 1908. On 12/8/1912 she collided with an iceberg near Belle Isle and sustained slight damage and in January 1914 commenced her last Liverpool – St John, New Brunswick voyage for Canadian Pacific. On 18/4/1914 she began sailings between Glasgow, Quebec and Montreal, commencing her last voyage on 11/7/1914 and in August of that year began trooping voyages between Southampton and Havre. In September 1914 she was transferred to trooping to Alexandria and Bombay and various trooping duties and in 1917 was returned to Canadian Pacific which by that time had taken over the Allan Line. Sailings commenced on 24/8/1918 from London to Quebec and Montreal and on 30/1/1919 she resumed the Liverpool – St John, New Brunswick service and subsequently the Glasgow, London, Liverpool or Antwerp to Canada run. On 16/11/1922 she was renamed “Marvale” and her accommodation altered to Cabin and 3rd class only and on 26/4/1923 commenced her last voyage from Glasgow to Belfast, Quebec and Montreal but on 21/5/1923 she was wrecked near Cape Race with no loss of life.

SS Corsican.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Czar

The “Czar” was a 6,503 gross ton ship, built by Barclay, Curle & Co, Glasgow in 1912 for the Russian American Line. Her details were – length 425ft x beam 53.2ft, two funnels, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 15 knots. There was accommodation for 30-1st, 260-2nd and 1,086-3rd & 4th class passengers. Launched on 23/03/1912, she sailed from Libau on her maiden voyage to Copenhagen and New York on 30/05/1912. Her last voyage on this service started on 17/07/1914 and on 13/09/1914 she commenced Archangel – New York sailings. After the Russian revolution, she was transferred to British registry and placed under the management of the Cunard SS Co. and in 1921 was returned to the East Asiatic Co of Copenhagen (owners of the Russian American Line). They renamed her “Estonia” and placed her on the transatlantic service under the description of Baltic American Line. On 11/01/1921 she sailed from Glasgow for New York, Danzig and Libau, and on 23/02/1921 commenced Libau – Danzig – Boston – New York sailings. In February 1925 she was refitted to accommodate 290-cabin and 500-3rd class passengers and in March 1926 was again altered to 110-cabin, 180-tourist and 500-3rd class. Her last Danzig – Copenhagen – Halifax – New York voyage started on 31/01/1930 and she was then sold to the Polish owned Gdynia-America Line. On 13/03/1930 she started a single round voyage between Danzig, Copenhagen, Halifax and New York and was then renamed “Pulaski”. She started sailing between Danzig, Halifax and New York under this name on 25/04/1930 and commenced her last North Atlantic voyage – Gdynia – Copenhagen – Halifax – New York on 18/08/1935. Transferred to the Gdynia – Buenos Aires service on 28/02/1936 and started her last voyage on this route on 21/04/1939. On 24/08/1939, just before the outbreak of WWII, she sailed from Gdynia for Falmouth and was used as a troopship during WWII, was renamed “Empire Penryn” under British registry in 1946 and was scrapped at Blyth in 1949.

SS Czar.  U.S. Library of Congress.

– D –

Dominion

The “Dominion” of 1899 was built in 1893 by Harland & Wolff of Belfast as the “Prussia” for the German Hamburg – America Line. She was a 5965 gross ton ship, length 445.5ft x beam 50.2ft, one funnel, four masts, twin screw and a speed of 14 knots. Accommodation for 60-1st class and 1,800-3rd class passengers. She was launched on 10/11/1893 but her completion was delayed by a strike (they even had them in those days!) and she didn’t leave Hamburg on her maiden voyage to Havre and New York until 24/6/1894. She stayed on this service until her last voyage on 6/2/1898 when she was sold to the British Dominion Line and renamed “Dominion”. She was rebuilt with a tonnage of 6618 tons and accommodation for 200-1st, 170-2nd, and 750-3rd class passengers and commenced sailing Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal on 7/5/1898. In 1908 she went to the American Line, was further altered to carry 370-2nd and 750-3rd class passengers and was put onto their Liverpool – Philadelphia service until May 1915. She did some intervening Dominion Line sailings and in 1918 did her first voyage after the Armistice from Liverpool – Portland on 2/12/1918. In autumn 1919 she was used as a cargo ship only and on 26/2/1921 she made her last trip from Liverpool – Portland and was scrapped in Germany in 1922.

SS Dominion. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

Duchess of Bedford

The “Duchess of Bedford” was built by John Brown & Co Ltd, Glasgow in 1928 for Canadian Pacific SS Ltd. She was a 20,123 gross ton ship, length 601ft x beam 75.2ft, two funnels, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 18 knots. There was passenger accommodation for 580-cabin, 480-tourist and 510-3rd class. Launched on 24/1/1928 by Mrs Stanley Baldwin, the wife of the British prime minister, she sailed from Liverpool on her maiden voyage to Quebec and Montreal on 1/6/1928. On her second westbound crossing, she set a new record of six days, nine and a half hours from Liverpool to Montreal. In July 1933 she was in collision with an iceberg in Belle Isle Strait, but sustained only slight damage. Five days before the declaration of war in 1939, she was chartered for a trooping voyage to Bombay, and on 5/1/1940 resumed Liverpool – St John, New Brunswick – Halifax voyages, being used on the Eastbound crossings to ferry Canadian troops to Britain. In August 1940 she commenced the first of three voyages to Suez via Freetown and Cape Town. In November 1941 she left Liverpool on a 5 month voyage which took her to Singapore with 4000 Indian troops and 40 nurses. Arriving at the end of January 1942, she embarked 875 women and children for evacuation to Batavia, Java. Although attacked on several occasions, she was not seriously damaged, and arrived at Liverpool on 2/4/1942. After two trips to Cape Town, she sailed from Liverpool for Boston on 7/8/1942 and on 9th August, sighted a U-Boat and sank her by gunfire. She was later used in the North African landings and shot down an enemy aircraft in November 1943. Later used in the Sicily and Salerno landings and various trooping voyages, and prisoner of war repatriations. On 3/3/1947 she arrived at Glasgow to be refitted to carry 400-1st and 300-tourist class passengers, her speed increased to 20 knots, and was renamed “Empress of France” in October 1947. She resumed Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal sailings on 1/9/1948 and in 1958 was fitted with new streamlined funnels and her accommodation altered to carry 218-1st and 482-tourist class passengers. She started her last Montreal – Liverpool crossing on 30/11/1960 having made 310 round voyages on the North Atlantic, and on 19/12/1960 sailed from Liverpool for Newport, Monmouthshire where she was scrapped.

SS Duchess of Bedford.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

– E

Empress of Scotland

See entry for the “Kaiserin Auguste Victoria”.

– F

Friedrich Der Grosse

The steamship “Friedrich Der Grosse” was built for Norddeutscher Lloyd by AGVulcan, Stettin and launched on 1/08/1896. 10.531 tons (the first German vessel over 10,000 tons); 159,4 x 18,29 meters (length x breadth); 2 funnels, 2 masts; twin-screw propulsion, quadruple- expansion engines, service speed 14.5 knots; accommodation for 216 passengers in 1st class, 227 in 2nd class, and from 1,671 to 1,964 in steerage; crew of 175 to 222. 11/11/1896, maiden voyage, Bremen-Suez Canal-Australia. 04/04/1897, first voyage, Bremen-Falmouth (to take on passengers from the Konigin Luise, whose rudder had broken)-New York. 1902, enclosed bridge added; 10,696 tons. 22/03/1903, first voyage, Naples-New York. 25/07/1912, last voyage, Genoa-Naples-New York (16 roundtrip voyages). 22/11/1913, last voyage, Bremen – New York. 21/01/1914, last voyage, Bremen-Australia (14 roundtrip voyages). 4/06/1914, first voyage, Bremen – Baltimore. 9/07/1914, last voyage, Bremen-Philadelphia- Baltimore. 3/08/1914, took refuge at the Norddeutscher Lloyd pier at Hoboken. 6/04/1917, seized by the U.S. Government; renamed “Huron” (transport). 1919, transferred to the U.S. Shipping Board; oil firing; chartered to the Munson Line, New York, for its New York-Buenos Aires service. 1/12/1921, leased to the Los Angeles Steamship Co; major rebuilding; renamed “City of Honolulu”. 23/09/1922, first voyage, Los Angeles-Honolulu. 12/10/1922, on return voyage, damaged by fire 575 miles from Los Angeles; all on board taken onto the U.S. Army Transport Thomas, and the freighter West Farallon. 17/10/1922, sunk by gunfire from the U.S. Coast Guard cutter Shawnee as a threat to navigation.

SS Friedrick Der Grosse. U.S. Library of Congress.

Furst Bismark

The “Furst Bismarck” was buit by A.G.Vulcan, Stettin for the Hamburg America Line and was laid down as the “Venetia” but launched as the “Furst Bismarck”. She was a 8,430 gross ton ship, length 502.6ft x beam 57.6ft, three funnels, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 19 knots. There was accommodation for 420-1st, 172-2nd and 700-3rd class passengers. Launched on 29/11/1890, she left Hamburg on her maiden voyage to Southampton and New York on 8/5/1891. On 27/3/1894 she commenced her first voyage from Genoa to Naples and New York and continued this service during the winter months until commencing her last Naples – New York voyage on 26/1/1902. She started her last Hamburg – Southampton – New York voyage on 5/11/1903. She was sold to Russia in 1904, converted to an auxiliary cruiser and renamed “Don”. In 1906 she went to the Russian Volunteer Fleet, was renamed “Moskva” and from 13/5/1907 she ran between Libau, Rotterdam and New York. She made 4 round voyages, and in 1913 was sold to the Austrian Navy who renamed her “Gaea” and used her as a depot ship. Seized by Italy at the end of the Great War, she was rebuilt and renamed “San Giusto” for the Cosulich Line. In 1921 she made one round voyage from Trieste to Naples and New York and was scrapped in Italy in 1924.

SS Furst Bismark.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

– G

Grampian

The “Grampian” was built by A.Stephen & Sons, Glasgow in 1907 for the Allan Line. She was a 10,187 gross ton ship, length 485.7ft x beam 60.2ft, one funnel, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 15 knots. There was passenger accommodation for 210-1st, 250-2nd and 1,000-3rd class. Launched on 25/7/1907, she sailed from Glasgow on her maiden voyage to Boston on 7/12/1907. In May 1908 she made her first voyage between Glasgow, Quebec and Montreal and on 26/11/1908 started her first Liverpool – St John, NB voyage, and made further Liverpool departures during the winter seasons. In 1910 she was rebuilt to 10,947 tons and on 29/11/1912 was chartered to Canadian Pacific and made a single round voyage between Liverpool, Halifax and St John, New Brunswick. On 15/8/1914 she commenced her last Glasgow – Quebec – Montreal voyage and on 11/9/1914 was again chartered to Canadian Pacific and sailed from Liverpool to Quebec and Montreal. On the eastbound voyage she was used as a troop transport to carry part of the Canadian Expeditionary Force to Europe. In December 1914 she resumed Canadian Pacific voyages between Liverpool and St John, New Brunswick, and made the last of four round voyages when she left St John, New Brunswick on 17/4/1915 for Liverpool. In May 1915 she resumed Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal voyages for the Allan Line. In 1917 she was taken over, together with the rest of the Allan Line fleet, by Canadian Pacific and commenced her first voyage after the Armistice on 15/12/1918 when she left Liverpool for St John, New Brunswick. She subsequently sailed between Glasgow, Liverpool, London or Antwerp and Canada and started her final voyage on 15/12/1920 when she sailed from London for Antwerp and St John, New Brunswick. On 14/3/1921 she was gutted by fire while being refitted at Antwerp, was abandoned to the insurance underwriters, and in 1925 was scrapped at Hendrik Ido, Ambacht.

SS Grampian. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

– I

Ionian

The “Ionian” was built by Workman Clark & Co Ltd, Belfast in 1901 for the Allan Line of Liverpool. Her details were – 8,268 gross tons, length 470ft x beam 57.5ft, one funnel, four masts, twin screw and a speed of 14 knots. There was accommodation for 132-1st, 160-2nd and 800-3rd class passengers. Launched on 12/9/1901, she sailed on her maiden voyage from Liverpool to Halifax and St John, New Brunswick on 21/11/1901. On 15/5/1902 she commenced her first voyage from Liverpool to Quebec and Montreal and on 27/5/1905 started her first Glasgow – Quebec – Montreal run. On 17/5/1906 she resumed the Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal service and on 20/7/1907 went back to the Glasgow – Quebec – Montreal run. In 1909 she was converted to carry 325-2nd and 800-3rd class passengers and started her first London – Quebec – Montreal voyage on 25/4/1912. Her last run on this service started on 30/7/1914 and she then went onto trooping duties to Bombay via Suez. In 1917 she went to Canadian Pacific who had taken over Allan Line, but returned to trooping in October of that year. On 21/10/1917 she was sunk by a mine laid off Milford Haven by the German submarine UC.51 with the loss of 7 lives.

SS Ionian.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

– K –

Kaiserin Auguste Victoria

The Hamburg America Line steamship “Kaiserin Auguste Victoria”, was laid down by A.G. Vulcan, Stettin (ship #264), as the “Europa”, and launched 29/08/1905 under the name “Kaiserin Auguste Victoria”. 24,581 tons; 206 (214.9) x 23,5 meters (length x breadth); 2 funnels, 4 masts; twin-screw propulsion, quadruple-expansion engines (17,500 psi), service speed 17.5 (maximum 18) knots; accommodation for 652 passengers in 1st class, 286 in 2nd class, 216 in 3rd class, and 1,842 in steerage; crew of 593. At the time of her launch, the Kaiserin Auguste Victoria was the largest passenger ship in the world, supplanting the Amerika. 10/05/1906, maiden voyage, Hamburg-Dover-Cherbourg-New York. 23/06/1914, last voyage, Hamburg-Southampton-Cherbourg-New York-Hamburg. 1/08/1914, laid up for the duration of World War I in Hamburg. 23/03/1919, sailed for Cowes, England, where she was surrendered to the Shipping Controller on 27 March; immediately transferred to the U.S. Shipping Board for use as a troop transport. 14/02/1920 -1/01/1921, 10 roundtrip voyages, Liverpool-New York, chartered by the Cunard Line. 13/05/1921, sold to the Canadian Pacific Railway Co. 5/08/1921, renamed “Empress of Scotland”; refitted by Vulcan-Werft, Hamburg: 25,037 tons; converted to oil fuel; accommodation for 459 passengers in 1st class, 478 in 2nd class, 960 in 3rd class. 22/01/1922, first voyage, Southampton-New York-Mediterranean cruise. 22/04/1922, second voyage, Southampton-Cherbourg-Quebec. 14/06/1922, first voyage, Hamburg-Southampton-Cherbourg-Quebec. 1923, collided at Hamburg with the SS Bonus. May 1926, passenger accommodation changed to 1st class, 2nd class, tourist, and 3rd class. 1927, passenger accommodation changed to 1st class, tourist, and 3rd class. 11/10/1930, last voyage, Southampton-Cherbourg-Quebec. 2/12/1930, sold to Hughes, Bolkow & Co, Blyth. 10/12/1930, burned out and sunk in the Hughes, Bolkow yard at Blyth. May 1931, wreck raised. October 1931, scrapping completed.

SS Kaiserin Auguste Victoria.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Kildonan Castle

Built in 1899 by Fairfield Shipbuilding & Engineering Co.for the Union-Castle line. Bommenced her career as H. M. “Transport 44” for use during the Boer War. On her maiden voyage she carried 3,000 troops to Cape Town and in December 1900 was used as a prisoner of war ship at Simonstown. During 1901 she returned to Fairfields for completion before undertaking her first commercial mail sailing on 07/12/1901. At the end 1920 she was refurbished and returned to the mail run. In January 1930 she was deployed on the intermediate run until May when she was laid up at Netley pending disposal. In May 1931 she was sold and broken up in Norway

SS Kildonan Castle.  Courtesy Roll of Honour www.roll-of-honour.com.

– L –

La Bourdonnais

Built as the “Scharnhorst” it was 8131 gross tons, speed 14 knots, built 1904 by Tecklenborg, Geestemunde for North German Lloyd. Designed for Far Eastern / Australian routes, she made her first sailing in September 1904 from Bremen to Southampton, Suez, Freemantle, Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney. 13/04/1914 last sailing Southampton to Sydney. 1919 taken over by the French Government and 1921 sold to the French Line and renamed “La Bourdonnais”. 1934 scrapped Genoa.

La Bretagne

The “La Bretagne” was built in 1885 by CGT, St Nazaire for Compagnie Generale Transatlantique (French Line). She was a 7112 gross ton vessel, length 495.4ft x beam 51.8ft, two funnels, four masts, single screw and a speed of 17 knots. Accommodation for 390-1st, 65-2nd, and 600-3rd class passengers. Launched on 9/9/1885 she sailed from Havre on her maiden voyage to New York on 14/8/1886. In 1895 she was rebuilt with quadruple expansion engines, two masts and 3rd class accommodation increased to 1,500. On 8/6/1912 she left Havre on her last voyage to New York and then went to the French company, Cie Sud Atlantique. In 1919 she was renamed “Alesia” and in December 1923 she was sold for scrap in Holland, but broke her tow near Texel island and ran aground to become a total loss.

SS La Bretagne.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Lake Champlain

The “Lake Champlain” was built by Barclay, Curle & Co,Ltd, Glasgow in 1900 for Elder Dempster’s Beaver Line. She was a 7,392 gross ton ship, length 446ft x beam 52ft, one funnel, four masts, twin screw and a speed of 13 knots. Accommodation was provided for 100-1st, 80-2nd and 500-3rd class passengers. Launched on 31/3/1900, she sailed on 15/5/1900 from Liverpool on her maiden voyage to Quebec and Montreal. On 21/5/1901, she was the first merchant ship to be fitted with permanent wireless telegraphy apparatus and on 6/4/1903 was taken over with the rest of Beaver Line’s fleet by Canadian Pacific. In 1906 her accommodation was modified to carry 150-2nd and 1,000-3rd class passengers and on 7/3/1913 she was renamed “Ruthenia”. She commenced sailings between Trieste and St John, NB on 20/3/1913 and completed 5.5 round voyages on this service, the last starting in Jan 1914. On 4/2/1914 she left St John, New Brunswick for London and in September 1914 commenced her last London – Quebec – Montreal voyage. She arrived at Belfast in Nov 1914 and was converted into a dummy of the battleship HMS King George V. In summer 1915 she became a store ship and in 1916 was used as a naval oiler. In 1929 she became an oil hulk at Singapore and in 1942 was captured by the Japanese and renamed “Choran Maru”. Recaptured by Allied forces in 1945, she stranded in the Moesi River in 1946, was refloated and towed to the Clyde. Arriving there on 18/6/1949, she was broken up at Dalmuir.

SS Lake Champlain.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Lake Erie

The “Lake Erie” was built by Barclay, Curle & Co Ltd, Glasgow in 1899 for Elder Dempster. She was a 7,550 gross ton ship, length 446ft x beam 52ft, one funnel, four masts, twin screw and a speed of 13 knots. There was accommodation for 100-1st, 80-2nd and 500-3rd class passengers. Launched on 21/11/1899, she left Liverpool on her maiden voyage to Cape Town on 30/1/1900 as a Boer War transport and made 8 round voyages on this route. On 24/6/1902 she commenced her first voyage from Liverpool to Quebec and Montreal and in 1903 was acquired by Canadian Pacific together with the Canadian interests of the Elder Dempster Line. She commenced Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal sailings for her new owners on 28/4/1903 and in 1906 was refitted to carry 150-2nd and 1,000-3rd class passengers. In 1910 she was chartered to the Allen Line and commenced London – Quebec – Montreal voyages on 14/5/1910. She made 25 round voyages for the Allen Line, the last one commencing 6/2/1913 when she left St John, NB for London. In 1913 she was renamed “Tyrolia” for Canadian Pacific and in April of that year started sailings from Trieste to Quebec and Montreal. She commenced her last voyage on this service in February 1914 when she left Trieste for St John, New Brunswick and on 28/2/1914 sailed from St John for Liverpool. In August 1914 she commenced her last London – Quebec – Montreal voyage and on 28/10/1914 was converted to the dummy battleship – HMS “Centurion”. She later became a troop transport and then a store ship. In 1916 she was fitted with tanks, converted to a naval oiler and was renamed “Saxol”. On 7/10/1916 she went to Lane & MacAndrew Ltd and was renamed “Aspenleaf”. Transferred to the Shipping Controller on 7/11/1917 and on 12/9/1919 was sold to the Anglo Saxon Petroleum Co (Shell Oil). Renamed “Prygona” on 11/1/1921 and was sold to Petersen & Albeck, Copenhagen on 6/2/1925 for scrap.

SS Lake Erie.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Lake Huron

4,040 gross tons, length 385ft x beam 42.8ft, one funnel, three masts, iron hull, single screw, speed 11 knots, accommodation for 70-1st, 50-2nd and 900-3rd class passengers. Built by the London & Glasgow Co, Glasgow, she was launched for the Canada Shipping Co (Beaver Line) on 10/09/1881. Her maiden voyage started 9/11/1881 when she left Liverpool for New York (first NY sailing of the company) and on 27/04/1882 she started her first Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal sailing. Her last voyage on this service started 22/10/1898 and in December 1898 she made a Batum – Halifax sailing to take the Doukhobors from Russia to Canada. She resumed Liverpool – Canada sailings on 15/07/1899 under the ownership of Beaver Line of Steamers (Elder Dempster & Co) who had taken over the company, and commenced her final voyage on 18/10/1900. She was scrapped at Genoa the following year.

SS Lake Huron. Courtesy John Kalmakov http://members.shaw.ca/kalmakov/.

Lake Ontario

The “Lake Ontario” was a 4502 gross ton ship, length 374.5ft x beam 43.5ft, clipper bows, two funnels, three masts, single screw, speed 12 knots. Accommodation for 200- 1st, 85-2nd and 1,000-3rd class passengers. Built by J. Laing, Sunderland (engines by G. Clark, Sunderland), she was launched for the Beaver Line on 10/03/1887 and her maiden voyage from Liverpool to Quebec and Montreal started 10/06/1887. In August 1896 she collided with Dominion Line’s Vancouver in the St. Lawrence River, and in January 1898 collided with Wilson Line’s Hindoo in the Atlantic, both times receiving only slight damage. In March 1899 the company became Beaver Line of Steamers (Elder Dempster & Co), and continued Liverpool – Canada sailings until starting her last voyage Liverpool – St. John, New Brunswick on 28/03/1903. In 1905 she was scrapped in Italy.

SS Lake Ontario.  Courtesy The ShipsList www.theshipslist.com.

Lake Superior

4,562 gross tons, length 400ft x beam 44.2ft, one funnel, three masts, iron hull, single screw and a speed of 11 knots. Accommodation for 190-1st, 80-2nd and 1,000-3rd class passengers. Built by J & G. Thomson, Glasgow, she was launched for the Beaver Line on 4/12/1884. Her maiden voyage started on 7/05/1885 when she left Liverpool for Quebec and Montreal. In July 1894 she sustained slight damage when she collided with an iceberg in Belle Isle Strait and commenced her last sailing on 29/101898 between Liverpool, Quebec and Montreal. The company went into liquidation in 1899 and resumed service later the same year as the Beaver Line of Steamers (Elder Dempster & Co). In April 1899 she sailed from Batum to Halifax to take the Doukhobors from Russia to Canada and then resumed Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal sailings on 3/06/1899. Her final voyage from Liverpool for St John, NB started on 18/03/1902 and she was wrecked near St John, New Brunswick on the homeward voyage on 31/03/1902 with no loss of life. She was later salvaged and scrapped where she lay.

SS Lake Superior. Courtesy John Kalmakov http://members.shaw.ca/kalmakov/.

La Savoie

The “La Savoie” was built for Compagnie Generale Transatlantique (French Line) by CGT, St Nazaire in 1900. She was a 11,168 gross ton ship, length 563.1ft x beam 60ft, two funnels, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 20 knots. There was passenger accommodation for 437-1st, 118-2nd and 398-3rd class. Launched on 31/03/1900, she sailed from Havre on 31/08/1901 on her maiden voyage to New York and took approx 6.5 days for the crossing. She continued this service until starting her last voyage on 18/07/1914. Fitted as an Armed Merchant Cruiser, she was employed in general patrol and trooping work until January 1915 when she joined the French Mediterranean Fleet. Used as an Armed Transport, she landed troops in the Dardanelles and Eastern Mediterranean operations and was damaged by Turkish shore batteries. In 1916 she evacuated part of the Serbian army to Corfu and returned to Toulon for extensive repairs. This appears to have ended her war service, but it wasn’t until 1919 that she was returned to her owners. She resumed Havre – New York sailings on 26/04/1919 and in March 1923 was refitted to carry 430-cabin and 613-3rd class passengers. On 24/09/1927 she commenced her last Havre – New York – Havre voyage and was then sold and scrapped at Dunkirk the following year. In the 21 years she spent on the North Atlantic route, she made 446 crossings, carrying a total of 275,000 passengers and steaming 1,382,000 miles.

SS La Savoie.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Laurentic

Built by Harland & Wolff, Belfast in 1908 as the “Alberta” but launched as the “Laurentic” 14,892 gross tons, length 550.4ft x beam 67.3ft, one funnel, two masts, three screws and a speed of 16 knots. Accommodation for 230-1st, 430-2nd and 1,000-3rd class passengers. Maiden voyage 29/4/1909 from Liverpool to Quebec and Montreal, on 13/9/1914 she was commissioned at Montreal as a transport for the Canadian Expeditionary Force. On 23/1/1917 she was sunk off Northern Ireland by a mine laid by the German submarine U.80 with the loss of 354 lives. After the Great War most of the UKP5 million bullion she was carrying was recovered.

SS Laurentic.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Le Douro

This Messenger Maritimes steamship was commissioned on 16/12/1889 in Siota. It was 2700 gross tons, length 111 metres, three screws and two boilers. Accomodations for 31-36 passengers (it was a passenger and freight vessel). It commenced a new run from London to Le Havre. In 1895, it commenced a delivery run to Madagascar. In August 1898, she made a Batum – Lancara sailing to take the Doukhobors from Russia to Cyprus. In 1903, it commenced a run to Mediterranean sea and Black sea ports and after 1908, to Indochina. It was then placed on a run to Madagascar where it was cast ashore and lost in Farafangana 12/5/1910.

SS Le Douro.  Courtesy Philippe Ramona  http://www.es-conseil.fr/pramona/e1mm.htm.

– M –

Mauretania

The “Mauretania” was built by Swan, Hunter & Wigham Richardson, Wallsend-on-Tyne (engines by Wallsend Slipway Co) in 1906 for the Cunard Line. She was a 31,938 gross ton ship, overall length 790ft x beam 88ft, four funnels, two masts, four screws and a service speed of 25 knots. There was accommodation for 563-1st, 464-2nd and 1,138-3rd class passengers. Launched on 20/9/1906, she left Liverpool on her maiden voyage to Queenstown (Cobh) and New York on 16/11/1907. Between 1907 and 1924 she broke several transatlantic records, and started her last pre-war Liverpool – New York voyage on 10/10/1914. Converted to a troopship, hospital ship and then back to a troopship between 1915 and 1919, she made her first Liverpool – New York voyage after the Armistice on 25/11/1918 (still as a troopship). After being refitted as a passenger liner, she commenced Southampton – Halifax – New York voyages on 28/6/1919. Damaged by fire at Southampton on 25/7/1921, she was rebuilt to 30,696 tons, converted from coal to oil fuel, and refitted to carry 589-1st, 400-2nd and 767-3rd class passengers. She resumed Southampton – Cherbourg – New York sailings on 25/3/1922 and in April 1931 was refitted to carry 1st, tourist and 3rd class passengers. She commenced her last Southampton – Cherbourg – New York voyage on 30/6/1934 and then carried out five cruises from New York. Her last New York – Southampton crossing started on 26/9/1934, and on 1/7/1935 she left Southampton for Rosyth, where she was scrapped.

SS Mauretania.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Megantic

The “Megantic” was built by Harland & Wolff, Belfast in 1908. Originally laid down as the “Albany” for the Dominion Line, she was purchased on the stocks by White Star Line and launched as the “Megantic”. This was a 14,878 gross ton ship, length 550.4ft x beam 67.3ft, one funnel, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 16 knots. There was accommodation for 230-1st, 430-2nd and 1,000-3rd class passengers. Launched on 10/12/1908, she sailed from Liverpool on her maiden voyage to Quebec and Montreal on 17/06/1909. On 30/11/1914 she started her first Liverpool – New York voyage and commenced her last sailing on this route on 21/04/1915. On 6/04/1917 she came under the liner requisition scheme and was used for government wartime services. In April 1918 she resumed Liverpool – New York sailings and started her last voyage on this service on 1/04/1919. Refitted to accommodate 325-1st, 260-2nd and 550-3rd class passengers, she resumed Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal voyages in May 1919. On 9/01/1920 she sailed Liverpool – Sydney for the British government and in May 1924 she became cabin and 3rd class only. She made one voyage to China as a troop transport in 1927 and in March 1928 became cabin, tourist and 3rd class. On 22/03/1928 she sailed London – Havre – Southampton – Halifax – New York and on 19/04/1928 commenced her first London – Havre – Southampton – Quebec – Montreal voyage. Her last voyage on this service started on 16/05/1931 and she was then laid up at Rothesay, Scotland. In February 1933 she sailed to Osaka, Japan where she was scrapped.

SS Megantic.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Montclare

The “Montclare” was built by John Brown & Co.Ltd, Glasgow in 1922 for Canadian Pacific Steamships Ltd. She was a 16,314 gross ton vessel, length 549.5ft x beam 70.2ft, two funnels, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 16 knots. There was accommodation for 542-cabin class and 1,268-3rd class passengers. She was laid down as the “Metapedia” but launched on 18/12/1921 as the “Montclare”. On 18/8/1922 she left Liverpool on her maiden voyage to Quebec and Montreal. In 1928, her accommodation was altered to cabin, tourist and 3rd class and her engines rebuilt in 1929. On 22/3/1929 she commenced an Antwerp – Southampton – St.John, New Brunswick. Service and on 17/4/1929 an Antwerp – Southampton – Quebec – Montreal service. On 20/3/1930 she made her first voyage Hamburg – Southampton – Cherbourg – St John, New Brunswick. and commenced her last voyage Hamburg – Southampton – Cherbourg – Quebec – Montreal on 9/11/1933. Between 1932 – 1939 she carried out 48 pleasure cruises, but some North Atlantic voyages from Hamburg, Antwerp, Southampton or Liverpool. In Jan.1939 she was rebuilt to carry cabin and 3rd class only and commenced her last North Atlantic voyage on 21/7/1939 from Liverpool to Greenock, Belfast, Quebec, Montreal and Liverpool. On 28/8/1939 she was converted to an Armed Merchant Cruiser and named HMS Montclare and on 2/6/1942 was sold to the British Admiralty. In 1946 she was used as a submarine depot ship, and in 1954 was towed to Gareloch. In 1955 she was towed to Portsmouth and in Jan.1958 was sold and scrapped at Inverkeithing.

SS Montclare.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Montezuma

The “Montezuma” was a 7,345 gross ton ship, length 485ft x beam 59ft, one funnel, four masts, twin screw, speed 13 knots. Built by A. Stephen & Sons, Glasgow, she was launched as a cargo steamer with limited passenger accommodation for Elder Dempster & Co on 11th Jul.1899. Her maiden voyage started 12/09/1899 when she left Greenock for New Orleans and on 22/10/1899 left New Oreleans on the first of 8 voyages as a Boer War transport. (probably transporting mules or horses). On 20/08/1902 she commenced a single round voyage between London and Montreal and in October 1902 sailed between Avonmouth and New Orleans. Transferred to Canadian Pacific when they purchased Elder Dempster’s Canadian services in 1903, she was fitted with accommodation for 1,000-3rd class passengers and started her first London – Antwerp – St John, New Brunswick voyage in March 1904. On 8/05/1904 she commenced her first London – Antwerp – Quebec – Montreal sailing and in 1914 was taken over by the Admiralty and converted into a dummy of the battleship HMS “Iron Duke”. On 7/07/1915 she was purchased by the Admiralty, renamed “Abadol” and used as a naval oiler. In 1917 she went to Lane & MacAndrew as the “Oakleaf” and on 25th July 1917 was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine UC.41 while 64 miles from the Butt of Lewis, Scotland.

SS Montezuma.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Montfort

The “Montfort” was built in 1899 by Palmers Co Ltd, Jarrow-on-Tyne for Elder Dempster’s Beaver Line. She was a 5,519 gross ton ship, length 445ft x beam 52.2ft, one funnel, four masts, twin screw and a speed of 13 knots. Built primarily as a cargo vessel, she had accommodation for only 12-1st class passengers. Launched on 13/2/1899, she sailed from the Tyne on her maiden voyage to Quebec and Montreal on 26/4/1899. In May 1899 she made her first of four Avonmouth – Montreal passages. She was transferred to trooping duties for the Boer War and commenced her first of three Liverpool – Capetown voyages on 11/11/1899. She also made one round voyage from each of Halifax, New Orleans and Fiume to Capetown. In 1900 she was refitted to carry 30-1st class and 1,200-3rd class passengers and her tonnage increased to 7,087 tons. Her first passenger voyage between Liverpool, Quebec and Montreal commenced on 17/7/1900 and she received several refits to various tonnages between 1901-1903. In 1903, the “Montfort” went to Canadian Pacific together with the rest of Beaver Line’s Canadian fleet and her accommodation was altered to carry 30-2nd and 1,200-3rd class passengers. The following year the company switched its service from Avonmouth to London/Antwerp to Canada and on the eastbound journey, the third class berths were frequently dismantled in Montreal and replaced with portable stalls to carry upwards of 1,200 head of cattle to London. In 1909, she was again rebuilt to 6,578 tons and on 1/10/1918 was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U.55, 170 miles from Bishops Rock, Sicily Islands, with the loss of 5 lives.

SS Montfort. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

Montnairn

This was a 17,082 gross ton vessel built by J.C.Tecklenborg, Geestemunde in 1907. Her details were – length 590.1ft x beam 68.3ft, two funnels, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 17 knots. There was accommodation for 416-1st, 338-2nd and 1,726-3rd class passengers. Laid down as the “Washington” she was launched as the “Prinz Friedrich Wilhelm” on 21/10/1907. She sailed from Bremen on her maiden voyage to Southampton, Cherbourg and New York on 06/06/1908 and commenced her last voyage on this service on 13/06/1914. In August 1914, on the outbreak of the Great War, she took refuge at Odda, Norway during a pleasure cruise, and on 31/3/1919 surrendered to Britain, who chartered her to the US Navy Dept. In 1920 she was chartered to Canadian Pacific who used her on the Liverpool – Quebec service, starting on 14/07/1920. In 1921 she was bought outright by Canadian Pacific from the Reparations Commission and reconditioned at Glasgow. On 02/08/1921 she was renamed “Empress of China” but never sailed as such, and later that month was again renamed “Empress of India”. On 25/08/1921 she was chartered to Cunard and completed two Southampton – New York voyages for them and was then returned to Canadian Pacific. On 23/06/1922 she commenced the first of two Liverpool – Quebec voyages and on 21/08/1922 started a single Southampton – Cherbourg – Quebec voyage. She was renamed “Montlaurier” and rebuilt to carry Cabin class and 3rd class passengers and on 04/05/1923 sailed from Liverpool for Quebec but returned due to boiler trouble, and finally sailed on 29/06/1923. She commenced her last voyage Liverpool – St John, NB on 24/01/1925 and sailed from St John on 22/02/1925 but had steering gear trouble off Fastnet and returned to Queenstown and was then towed to Liverpool. On 14/04/1925 she was damaged by fire when under repair by Cammel Laird, but was repaired and on 18/06/1925 was renamed “Monteith” but never sailed under this name. On 02/07/1925 she was again renamed as “Montnairn” and from 17/07/1925 sailed between Liverpool and Quebec. In July 1926 she was converted to cabin, tourist and 3rd class and on 04/05/1927 commenced her first voyage Antwerp – Southampton – Quebec. On 16/09/1928 she commenced her final sailing from Hamburg to Southampton, Cherbourg and Quebec and was then laid up at Southampton. On 23/12/1929 she was sold and scrapped at Genoa.

SS Montnairn.

Montrose

16,403 gross tons, length 548.7ft x beam 70.2ft, two funnels, two masts, twin screw, speed 16 knots, accommodation for 542-cabin and 1,268-3rd class passengers. Launched on 14/12/1920 by Fairfield Co, Glasgow for Canadian Pacific SS Co., she started her maiden voyage on 05/05/1922 from Liverpool to Quebec and Montreal. In 1928 her accommodation was altered to cabin, tourist and 3rd class and on 18/07/1928 she started her first voyage Antwerp – Southampton – Quebec – Montreal. 29/05/1929 first voyage Hamburg – Southampton – Cherbourg – Quebec – Montreal and on 06/06/1933 commenced her 11th and last voyage on this route. Between 1932 and 1932 she made 46 pleasure cruises as well as some North Atlantic voyages from Hamburg, Antwerp, Southampton or Liverpool. She started her last Liverpool – Belfast – Greenock – Quebec – Montreal – Liverpool voyage on 25/08/1939 and was then converted to the Armed Merchant Cruiser HMS “Forfar”. On 02/12/1940 she was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U.99 off the West coast of Ireland with the loss of 172 lives.

SS Montrose.

Mount Temple

8,790 gross tons, length 485ft x beam 59ft, one funnel, four masts, twin screw and a speed of 13 knots. Built by Sir W.G.Armstrong, Whitworth & Co, Walker-on-Tyne (engines by Wallsend Slipway Co), she was launched for Elder Dempster’s Beaver Line on 18/06/1901. Her maiden voyage started on 19/09/1901 when she left the Tyne for New Orleans and 4/11/1901 she sailed from New Orleans on the first of two voyages as a Boer War transport, probably with horses or mules. She subsequently sailed between the UK and New Orleans until 1903 when she passed to Canadian Pacific. Fitted with accommodation for 14-2nd and 1,250-3rd class passengers, she sailed on her first Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal voyage on 17/05/1903. She made six round voyages on this service and on 27/03/1904 commenced her first London – Antwerp – St John, New Brunswick sailing. On 1/12/1907 she stranded on West Ironbound Island, Nova Scotia and 600 passengers and crew were rescued by breeches buoy. Refloated on 16/04/1908 and on 6/12/1916 she was captured and sunk by the German raider Moewe while 620 miles from Fastnet.

SS Amerika. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

– P –

Paris

34,569 gross tons, overall length 764.3ft x beam 85.3ft, three funnels, two masts, quadruple screw and a speed of 21 knots. There was accommodation for 565-1st, 480-2nd and 1,100-3rd class passengers. Built by Chantiers & Ateliers de St Nazaire, St Nazaire for Compagnie Generale Transatlantique (French Line). Her keel was laid in 1913, but due to wartime conditions, she wasn’t launched until 12/09/1916 and work was then suspended and she was towed to Quiberon Bay. She wasn’t commissioned until 1921 and commenced her maiden voyage from Havre to New York on 15/06/1921. In August 1929 she was damaged by fire at Havre and resumed the Havre – Plymouth – New York service on 15/01/1930. In May 1932 her accommodation was re-classified as 1st, tourist and 3rd class, and she commenced her last Havre – Southampton – New York sailing on 31/03/1939. On 19/04/1939 she caught fire at her berth in Havre, capsized and sank. Her wreck was disposed of after World War II.

SS Paris.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Pisa

The “Pisa” was a 4,967 gross ton ship, built by A.Stephen & Sons, Glasgow in 1896 for the Sloman Line. Her details were – length 389.1ft x beam 46.1ft, one funnel, two masts, single screw and a speed of 12 knots. Accommodation was provided for 40-1st and 1,200-3rd class passengers. Launched on 24/11/1896, she sailed from Hamburg on her maiden voyage to New York on 20/5/1897. In 1903 she was chartered by Hamburg America Line and commenced Hamburg – New York sailings for this company on 4/11/1903. On 5/1/1904 she started a single round voyage between Odessa, Constantinope, Smyrna, Piraeus and New York and on 9/1/1907 was purchased by Hamburg America Line. She resumed Hamburg – New York sailings on 14/2/1907 and on 14/4/1911 started her first Hamburg – Quebec – Montreal voyage. On 29/8/1913 she commenced her last voyage on this service, and on 11/4/1914 started her last Hamburg – New York sailing. On 22/6/1914 she sailed from Batum for Constantinople, Smyrna, Piraeus and New York (arr. 22/7/1914) and took refuge there until April 1917 when she was seized by the US Authorities. She then became the US Government ship “Ascutney” until 1934 when she was scrapped at Boston, Mass.

Prinz Adalbert

She was built in 1902 by Bremer Vulkan, Vegesack for the Hamburg America Line. Dimensions were 6030 gross tons, length 403.3ft x beam 49.2ft, one funnel, two masts, twin screw, speed 13 knots. There appears to be a discrepancy between North Atlantic Seaway by Bonsor and Merchant Fleets in Profile, vol.4 by Duncan Haws. Bonsor states that she carried 60 1st class and 1200 3rd class passengers. Maiden voyage 1903 Hamburg – Brazil, 1904 Genoa – Naples – New York, 1909 Hamburg – Quebec – Montreal, 1910 Hamburg – Philadelphia until 1914. Duncan Haws says 120 1st, 50 2nd and 300 3rd class passengers. Built for Far East service, 1904 transferred to West Indies route when Norddeutscher Lloyd took over the Far East passenger service, until 1914. Both accounts agree after 1914 when she was seized at Falmouth by Britain and was operated by the Admiralty. Renamed “Princetown” in 1916. Transferred to France in 1917 and renamed “Alesia”. Torpedoed and sunk 6/9/1917 by German submarine UC-50 off Ushant. 

– R –

Regina

The Regina was built by Harland & Wolff, Glasgow in 1917 and was a 16,313 gross ton ship, length 574.4ft x beam 67.8ft, completed as a cargo steamer with one funnel and one mast, triple screw and a speed of 15 knots. Launched on 19/04/1917 for the Dominion Line, she went to Harland & Wolff, Belfast in August 1920 for completion as a passenger vessel. Here she was fitted with two funnels, two masts, an upper promenade deck, and accommodation for 600-cabin and 1,700-3rd class passengers. On 16/03/1922 she started her first voyage between Liverpool, Halifax and Portland and on 29/04/1922 her first between Liverpool, Quebec and Montreal. She commenced her last voyage on this service on 06/11/1925 and on 12/12/1925 started her first Liverpool – Halifax – New York voyage under charter to White Star Line. In June 1926 she was converted to Cabin, tourist and 3rd class accommodation and on 01/11/1929 commenced her last Liverpool – Belfast – Glasgow – Quebec – Montreal voyage for White Star. In 1929 she was sold to Red Star Line of Antwerp, renamed “Westernland” and commenced Antwerp – Southampton – Cherbourg – New York voyages on 10/01/1930 with tourist and 3rd class passengers. On 30/11/1934 she started her last Antwerp – Havre – Southampton – New York – Havre – London – Antwerp voyage and in 1935 went to Bernstein Red Star Line of Hamburg. Converted to carry 486-tourist class passengers, she commenced Antwerp – Southampton – New York sailings on 29/03/1935 and started her last voyage on this service on 06/05/1939. In 1939 she was sold to Holland America Line and in June of that year resumed Antwerp – Southampton – New York sailings. She started her last passenger voyage on 10/05/1940 when she left Antwerp for New York and in November 1942 was bought by the British Admiralty and used as a repair ship. She was scrapped at Blyth in 1947.

SS Regina.  Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

Rousillon

The “Roussillon” was built by AG Weser, Bremen in 1906 as the “Goeben” for North German Lloyd of Bremen. She was a 8,800 gross ton ship, length 462.1ft x beam 57.6ft, one funnel, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 14 knots. There was accommodation for 281-cabin class and 1,333-3rd class passengers. Launched on 11/12/1906, she sailed on NGL’s Far East service until June 1911 when she made her first Bremen – Southampton – Suez – Fremantle – Adelaide and Sydney voyage. She made a second round voyage on this route and then reverted to the Far East service. In August 1914, at the outbreak of the Great War, she was interned at Vigo and in 1919 was transferred to French ownership, renamed “Roussillon” and came under the control of Compagnie Generale Transatlantique (French Line). On 28/9/1920 she started her first Marseilles – New York voyage and on 3/12/1920 commenced Havre – New York sailings. Her last voyage on this service started on 18/9/1923 and on 1/11/1923 she transferred to Bordeaux – New York voyages. Her final Bordeaux – New York sailing took place on 24/8/1930 and in February 1931 she was scrapped at Pasajes, Spain.

SS Rousillon.  Courtesy Philippe Ramona  http://www.es-conseil.fr/pramona/e1mm.htm.

Royal Edward

The “Royal Edward” was a 11,117 gross ton ship, length 526.1ft x beam 60.2ft, two funnels, two masts, three screws, speed 19 knots, accommodation for 344-1st, 210-2nd and 560-3rd class passengers. Built by Fairfield & Co, Glasgow, she was launched in July 1907 as the “Cairo” for the short lived, British owned Egyptian Mail Line. Sold to the Canadian Northern S.S.Co in 1910, she was renamed “Royal Edward” and from May 1910 to September 1914 was used on the Avonmouth – Quebec / Montreal route in summer and Halifax in winter. Taken over as a troopship in 1914, she was torpedoed and sunk in the Aegean Sea on 13/08/1915 while 6 miles west from Kandeliusa by the German Submarine UB.14. She had been sailing from Avonmouth and Alexandria to Mudros with a cargo of government stores. There were 132 lives lost including the Master.

SS Royal Edward.  Courtesy The ShipsList www.theshipslist.com.

Royal George

The “Royal George” was an 11,146 gross ton ship, built by Fairfield Co Ltd, Glasgow in 1907 as the “Heliopolis” for the British owned Egyptian Mail Co. Her details were – length 525.8ft x beam 60.2ft, two funnels, two masts, triple screw and a service speed of 19 knots. There was passenger accommodation for 344-1st, 210-2nd and 560-3rd class. Launched on 28/05/1907 she was used on the Marseilles – Alexandria service, but was found to be unprofitable and was laid up in Marseilles in 1909 and offered for sale. In 1910 she was purchased by Canadian Northern Steamships of Toronto and renamed “Royal George”. Refitted for North Atlantic service, she commenced Avonmouth – Quebec – Montreal sailings on 26/05/1910. On 6/11/1912 she stranded near Quebec, was refloated and sailed for Halifax for further repairs on 12th December and then proceeded to Liverpool. She resumed Avonmouth – Quebec – Montreal voyages on 17/06/1913. On 3/10/1914 she sailed from Gaspe Bay for Plymouth with part of the Canadian Expeditionary Force and was then taken over as a British troopship. The fleet was purchased by Cunard SS Co in 1916, but the “Royal George” continued trooping for the rest of the war. She resumed passenger voyages on 10/02/1919 when she started the first of five Liverpool – Halifax – New York sailings and started her first Southampton – Halifax – New York voyage on 15/08/1919. Her ninth and last voyage on this service commenced 10/06/1920 and she was then used as an emigrant depot ship at Cherbourg. In 1922 she was scrapped at Wilmhelmshaven.

SS Royal George. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

– S –

St. Louis

The “St. Louis” was an 11,629 gross ton ship, built by W.Cramp & Sons, Philadelphia in 1894 for the American Line. Her sister ship was the “St. Paul”. Her details were – length 535.5ft x beam 63ft, straight stem, two funnels, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 19 knots. There was accommodation for 350-1st, 220-2nd and 800-3rd class passengers. Launched on 12/11/1894, she sailed from New York on her maiden voyage to Southampton on 5/6/1895. She started her last Southampton – New York crossing on 16/4/1898 before being used as an auxiliary cruiser for use in the Spanish-American war. On 12/10/1898 she resumed New York – Southampton sailings and in 1903 was fitted with new boilers and had her funnels heightened. In 1913 she was refitted to carry 2nd and 3rd class passengers only and on 15/7/1914 sailed on her last Southampton – Cherbourg – Queenstown – New York voyage. Transferred to the New York – Liverpool service on 31/7/1914 until April 1918 when she commenced her last Liverpool – New York crossing, she then became the US government ship “Louisville”. On 9/1/1920 she was damaged by fire while being refitted for the New York – Southampton service, and was sold as an exhibition ship but not used as such. On 20/5/1924 she left New York under tow for Genoa where she was scrapped.

SS St. Louis. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

Sarmatian

The “Sarmatian” was built by R.Steele & Co of Greenock, Scotland in 1871 for the Allan Line. She was a 3647 gross ton vessel, length 370.9ft x beam 42.2ft, one funnel, three masts, iron construction, single screw and a speed of 13 knots. She had accommodation for 100-1st, and 850-3rd class passengers. Launched on 7/3/1871, she sailed from Liverpool on her maiden voyage to Quebec and Montreal on 31/8/1871. In 1874 she was chartered as a troopship for the Ashanti Expedition and on 3/1/1889 commenced her last voyage from Liverpool to Halifax and Portland. On 21/6/1889 she transferred to the Glasgow – Quebec – Montreal service until 1903. [In 1900 her passenger accommodation was altered to 2nd and 3rd class only.] On 3/6/1903 she commenced running from Glasgow to Boston and on 22/4/1904 commenced the London – Quebec – Montreal run. On 20/7/1907 she left Boston on her last voyage to Glasgow and in 1908 was scrapped at Rotterdam.

Southwark

The “Southwark” was a 8,607 gross ton vessel built in 1893 by Wm.Denny & Bros, Dumbarton for the American Line. Her details were – length 480ft x beam 57.2ft, one funnel, four masts, twin screw and a speed of 14 knots. There was accommodation for 100-2nd and 929-3rd class passengers. Launched on 4/7/1893, she sailed from Liverpool on her maiden voyage to Philadelphia on 28/12/1893. In 1895 she went to the Red Star Line and commenced her first voyage from Philadelphia to New York and Antwerp on 8/8/1895. On 31/8/1895 she commenced her first Antwerp – New York run and in 1899 (or earlier) her 2nd class accommodation was increased to 250. She sailed on her last voyage on the Antwerp – New York on 21/3/1903 and was then chartered to the Dominion Line and commenced running for their Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal service on 13/5/1903. In May 1910 she was chartered to the Allan Line and ran between Glasgow, Quebec and Montreal. On 9/7/1910 she commenced her last Montreal – Quebec – Glasgow sailing (2 round voyages) and went back to the Dominion Line. In May 1911 she made her last Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal sailing and was scrapped the same year.

SS Southwark. U.S. Library of Congress.

Stuttgart

The “Stuttgart” was built by Vulcan Werke, Stettin in 1923 for North German Lloyd of Bremen, this was a 13,367 gross ton ship, length 537ft x beam 65ft, two funnels, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 15 knots. There was passenger accommodation for 171-1st, 338-2nd and 594-3rd class. Launched on 31/7/1923, she sailed from Bremen on her maiden voyage to New York on 15/1/1924. In November 1927, she was refitted to carry cabin class, tourist 3rd cabin and 3rd class passengers. She made her last Bremen – New York (dep. 26/9/1937) – Bremen voyage in September 1937. In 1938 she was sold to the German Labour Front and was used for “Strength through Joy” cruising with accommodation for 990-single class passengers. Converted to a German Naval Hospital Ship in 1939, she was bombed in Gdynia on 09/10/1943 while filled with wounded German soldiers. She was towed to the outer harbour and deliberately sunk with considerable loss of life.

SS Stuttgart. Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Suffren

The “Blucher” was built by Blohm & Voss, Hamburg in 1901 for the Hamburg America Line. She was a 12,334 gross ton ship, length 525.6ft x beam 62.3ft, two funnels, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 16 knots. There was accommodation for 390-1st, 230-2nd and 1,550-3rd class passengers. Launched on 23/11/1901, she sailed from Hamburg on her maiden voyage to Boulogne, Southampton and New York on 7/6/1902. Her last voyage on this service commenced on 30/12/1911 and she was subsequently used on the Hamburg to South America route. In August 1914 she was interned at Pernambuco, Brazil and on 1/6/1917 was seized by the Brazilian authorities, who renamed her “Leopoldina”. On 11/3/1920 she was chartered to the French company, Compagnie Generale Transatlantique and started her first sailing between New York and Havre. Her passenger accommodation was refitted in December 1920 to carry 500-cabin class and 250-3rd class and she was renamed “Suffren”. On 9/5/1923 she commenced Havre – New York sailings and continued on this service until her last round voyage commenced when she left Havre on 22/9/1928. She was then laid up and in 1929 was scrapped at Genoa.

– T –

Teutonic

The “Teutonic” was a 9,984 gross ton ship, built in 1889 by Harland & Wolff, Belfast for the White Star Line. Her details were – length 565.8ft x beam 57.8ft, two funnels, three masts, twin screw and a speed of 19 knots. There was passenger accommodation for 300-1st, 190-2nd and 1,000-3rd class. Launched on 19/01/1889, she sailed from Liverpool for Spithead on 1st August to take part in the Naval Review, and was the first Armed Merchant Cruiser. On 7/08/1889 she commenced her maiden voyage from Liverpool to Queenstown (Cobh) and New York. In August 1891 she made a record passage of 5 days 16 hrs 31mins between Queenstown and Sandy Hook, and commenced her last Liverpool – Queenstown – New York voyage on 15/05/1907. On 12/06/1907 she started Southampton – Cherbourg – New York sailings and commenced her last voyage on this service on 19/04/1911. Transferred to the Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal service on 13/05/1911 with accommodation for 550-2nd and 1,000-3rd class passengers. On 20/09/1914 she was requisitioned as an Armed Merchant Cruiser and served with the 10th Cruiser Squadron. On 16/08/1915 she was purchased by the British Admiralty and became a troopship in 1918. Laid up at Cowes, Isle of Wight in 1921 and was scrapped later the same year at Emden

SS Teutonic.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Tunisian

The “Tunisian” was a 10,576 gross ton ship built by A.Stephen & Sons, Glasgow in 1900 for the Allan Line. Her details were – length 500.6ft x beam 59.2ft, one funnel, two masts, twin screw and a speed of 16 knots. There was accommodation for 240-1st, 220-2nd and 1,000-3rd class passengers. Launched on 17/1/1900, she sailed from Liverpool on her maiden voyage to Halifax and Portland on 5/4/1900. She commenced her first voyage Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal on 10/5/1900. In Jan.1907 she was chartered to Canadian Pacific who used her for four round voyages Liverpool – St John, New Brunswick. On 4/9/1914 she commenced her last voyage Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal for the Allan Line, and was used as a troopship for the Canadian Expeditionary Force on the homeward leg. Between Nov.1914 and Feb.1915 she was used as an accommodation ship for German prisoners at Ryde, Isle of Wight and in 1915 made several trooping voyages to Bombay and Gallipoli. In 1917 she was returned to the Allan Line, who by then had been taken over by Canadian Pacific and on 12/11/1918 commenced her first peacetime voyage from London to St John, New Brunswick. On 23/12/1918 she sailed on her first Liverpool – St John, New Brunswick. voyage and on 23/9/1919 her first London – Quebec – Montreal run. Between May 1920 and March 1921 she was converted from coal to oil fuel and her accommodation altered to carry 310-cabin and 736-3rd class passengers. On 6/4/1921 she sailed on her first Glasgow – St. John, New Brunswick voyage and on 2/3/1922 was renamed “Marburn”. On 17/11/1922 she commenced her first Liverpool – St. John, New Brunswick voyage, on 2/3/1923 her first Glasgow – St. John, New Brunswick and on 13/12/1924 her first Antwerp – St. John, New Brunswick voyage. Subsequently she ran between Hamburg, Glasgow, Antwerp or London to St. John, New Brunswick or Montreal – Quebec. She commenced her final voyage between Antwerp – Southampton – St. John, New Brunswick on 6/4/1928 and was then laid up at Southampton. Later the same year, she was scrapped at Genoa.

SS Tunisian.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

– U –

Umbria

The “Umbria” was a 7,718 gross ton ship, built for Cunard SS Co in 1884 by John Elder & Co, Glasgow. Her details were – length 501.6ft x beam 57.2ft, two funnels, three masts (rigged for sail), single screw and a speed of 19 knots. There was accommodation for 550-1st and 800-3rd class passengers. Launched on 26/06/1884 and sailed on her maiden voyage between Liverpool, Queenstown (Cobh) and New York on 01/11/1884. In 1887 or earlier she had accommodation for 160-intermediate passengers added, and in May 1887 made a record passage of 6 days, 4 hours, 12 mins between Queenstown and Sandy Hook. In 1890 she was rebuilt to 8,128 gross tons and on 31/12/1892 arrived at New York with a broken shaft. She sailed New York – Liverpool without passengers for permanent repairs and resumed Liverpool – New York sailings on 01/04/1893. In January 1900 she made two voyages as a Boer War transport and recommenced Liverpool – Queenstown – New York voyages on 21/07/1900. Her last sailing on this service started 12/02/1910 and she was scrapped the same year.

SS Umbria.  Courtesy Simplon Postcards www.simplonpc.co.uk.

Ultonia

845 gross ton ship, length 500ft x beam 57.4ft, one funnel, four masts, twin screw and a speed of 13 knots. Built by C.S. Swan & Hunter, Wallsend-on-Tyne (engines by Sir C. Furness, Westgarth & Co, Middlesborough) as a cargo steamer for the Cunard Steamship Co, she was launched on 4/06/1898. On 28/10/1898 she underwent trials and then sailed from the Tyne for Boston. Fitted with accommodation for 675-3rd class passengers in 1899, she started her first passenger voyage on 28/02/1899 when she left Liverpool for Queenstown (Cobh) and Boston. Her last voyage on this service started on 9/02/1904 and she was then rebuilt to 10,402 gross tons with accommodation for 120-2nd and 2,100-3rd class passengers. On 29/04/1904 she started sailings from Trieste to Fiume, Naples and New York and commenced her last voyage on this route on 31/10/1911. Her first Southampton – Quebec – Montreal voyage started on 23/04/1912, and her last on 5/11/1912. On 7/12/1912 she resumed New York – Trieste sailings and started her final voyage from Trieste to Fiume, Naples and New York on 28/06/1914. Between 1915-1916 she made several voyages between New York and St.Nazaire and on 27/06/1917 was torpedoed and sunk by the German submarine U.53 while 190 miles from Fastnet with the loss of one life.

SS Ultonia. Courtesy Jeff Newman web.greatships.net:81/.

– V –

Vancouver

The “Vancouver” was built by C.Connell & Co, Glasgow in 1884 for the Dominion Line. Her details were – 5,141 gross tons, length 430.6ft x beam 45ft, two funnels, four masts, iron construction, single screw and a speed of 14 knots. There was accommodation for 200-cabin class, 120-intermediate and 1,500-3rd class passengers. Launched on 12/3/1884, she commenced her maiden voyage from Liverpool to Quebec and Montreal on 19/6/1894. On 28/12/1886 she was chartered to Inman Line and completed two voyages between Liverpool, Queenstown (Cobh) and New York. In August 1890 she sustained slight damage in collision with an iceberg in fog near Belle Isle. In November 1890 her commander and a quartermaster were swept overboard and drowned. In 1892 she was rebuilt with triple expansion engines and only one funnel, and in November 1894 she stranded at the entrance to Lough Foyle and was towed to Liverpool. In August 1896 she was in collision with the Beaver Line’s “Lake Ontario” in the St Lawrence River and both ships sustained damage. On 29/3/1902 she sailed from Liverpool for Naples and on 10/4/1902 commenced her first Naples – Boston sailing. She commenced her last Boston – Genoa – Naples voyage on 21/11/1903 and resumed Liverpool – Quebec – Montreal voyages in May 1904. Her accommodation was altered to carry 300-2nd and 1,500-3rd class passengers and she commenced her final voyage on 27/3/1909 when she left Portland for Liverpool. In 1910 she was scrapped.

SS Vancouver.  Courtesy The ShipsList  www.theshipslist.com..

– W –

Western World

13,712 gross tons, length 517ft x beam 72.2ft, twin screw, speed 18.5 knots, accommodation for 260-1st and 300-3rd class passengers. Built 1922 by Bethlehem SB Corp., Sparrows Point, Md as the “Nutmeg State” for the U.S. Shipping Board. Baltimore. 1922 renamed “Western World”, used on the New York – River Plate service and managed by Munson Line. 1926 sold to Munson Line, New York. August 1931 stranded near Santos, Brazil and passengers taken off by Hamburg America Line’s General Osorio. She was refloated four weeks later and repaired. In 1938 the U.S. Maritime Commission took over Munson Line’s fleet as the company was in financial difficulty. In 1939 the ship was taken over by the U.S. Army and converted to the transport “Leonard Wood”. 1941 transferred to U.S. Navy. 1946 returned to U.S. Army, then to U.S. Maritime Commission for disposal and laid up. 1948 scrapped at Vancouver, Wash.

SS Leonard Wood aka Western World.  U.S. Library of Congress.

Notes

This list consists of descriptions of Doukhobor immigrant ships, which I have compiled over the course of several years from a variety of sources. While I have checked this information against my sources, much of it is derived from secondary works which may themselves contain errors. I welcome any corrections and additions to these accounts.

Doukhobors gather for mealtime aboard the SS Lake Huron en route to Canada, 1899. Library & Archives Canada C-005628.

Ship Names

It is usually not possible to identify a ship positively by its name alone. Very few names given to ships in the late 19th and early 20th centuries were unique. Indeed, names with nautical references, names of ports, names of national symbols or rulers, names of famous people, and common given names were frequently given to merchant vessels. As a result there have at any given time been any number of ships named “Lake Superior”, “America”, “Bremen”, “Californian”, “Vancouver”, etc.  At the same time, ships often changed hands and names many times. As a result, there may be any given number of names for a single ship over the course of its service life.

Terminology and Abbreviations

  • Beam. The width of a ship.  
  • First Class. The most expensive passenger accommodations on a ship.
  • Funnel. A smokestack of a vessel.  Note each shipping line retained its own distinctive funnel colours.
  • Laid up. A ship put in dock, as for repairs; a ship not in active service; a ship which is out of commission for fitting out, awaiting better markets, needing repair work, etc.
  • Launch. To place a ship in water for the first time at the shipyard.
  • Line. A shipping company.
  • Mast. A large long spar, placed nearly vertical on the center line of a ship.
  • Scrap. To salvage and dismantle a ship.
  • Screw. A ship’s propeller.
  • Second Class. A caliber of accommodations on a passenger ship, less roomy and elaborate than first class. Also referred to as “cabin class”.
  • SS. Abbreviation for Steam Ship.
  • Third Class. Accommodations on a passenger ship, that are of the third and usually lowest order of luxury and price. Also referred to as “steerage class”. With few exceptions, the Doukhobors sailed to Canada in steerage class. The term “steerage” was synonymous with the hardships of trans-Atlantic emigration as passengers were packed into dangerous quarters and each was allotted a small berth that served as bed and storage place. It was the only class most Doukhobor emigrants could afford and was literally next to the ship’s steering equipment, below the water line. It was not uncommon for ships to carry steerage class passengers outward bound and be converted to carry cattle on the homeward passage.
View of Gibraltar from the SS Lake Huron, the ship bringing the first group of Doukhobors to Canada, 1899.  Library & Archives Canada PA-022228.

Doukhobor Voyages

For a comprehensive listing of Doukhobor passenger voyages in the above-noted ships, visit the Index to Doukhobor Ship Passenger Lists. This listing contains the ship name, line, port of departure, date of departure, port of arrival, date of arrival, and number of passengers for over 95 Doukhobor immigrant ship voyages from Russia to Canada between 1898 and 1932.  Also included are microfilm reel numbers and links to online images of the original ship passenger manifests.

Ship Pictures

Whenever possible I have included a pictorial representation of the ship in question. To conserve space, these pictures are presented in small format, generally no more than 450 pixels wide. These pictures are reproduced here by permission from a variety of sources.  If you wish to use or obtain copies for your personal use, please contact the copyright holder (see photo caption) of the original picture for permission to do so.

Prints of the the SS Lake Superior and the SS Lake Huron, which brought over 7,500 Doukhobor immigrants to Canada from Russia in 5 trans-Atlantic voyages between 1898 and 1899, are available from Castlegar-area Doukhobor artist John Kalmakov. His colourized photo-illustrations of these ships are adapted from authentic maritime photographs, which are quite likely the best, and most likely the only remaining full-profile photographs of the ships. To order copies and for more information, visit John’s website, Doukhobor Prints.

Bibliography

Molokan Immigration Via Canada

Between 1904 and 1912, over 3,500 Molokans emigrated from the Caucasus region of Russia to the United States.  The majority of the Russian sectarian immigrants arrived through the main American immigration ports of Ellis Island, New York and Galveston, Texas.  However, recent archival discoveries confirm that approximately two hundred Molokan immigrants – over five per-cent of all Molokans who joined the migration – arrived through east Canadian ports between 1904 and 1907, then journeyed overland by rail through Canada before turning stateside on the final leg of their journey to their destination in Los Angeles, California.  The following is an index of known Canadian ship passenger records and border crossing records containing Molokan immigrants.  Compiled by Jonathan J. Kalmakoff.

Index — Ship Passenger Lists – Border Crossing Records

Ship Passenger Lists

Between 1904 and 1907, over one hundred and sixty Molokans took coastal ships from Russia to the Western European ports of Liverpool, England and Antwerp, Belgium, where they boarded transatlantic ships bound for Canada.  They disembarked at the ports of Quebec City, Quebec and Halifax, Nova Scotia.  The original ship passenger lists, available online at Library and Archives Canada, contain the following information for each Molokan immigrant: date of embarkation, name, age, gender, whether a head of a household on board, number of persons in the family, profession, calling or occupation, nation or country of birth, place of ultimate destination and name of personal contact there.  The following indices contain transcriptions of Molokan ship passenger lists. 


Ship passenger list for SS Montreal listing the Triglas(off) family of Molokans, 1905.

SS Montrose

This Canadian Pacific line steamship departed July 26, 1904, under Captain R.H. McNeill, from the port of Antwerp, Belgium. It carried 171 passengers, including 16 Molokans from Saratov and Kars, Russia. After 12 days at sea, the vessel arrived at the port of Quebec on August 6, 1904. The intended destination of all Molokan passengers is listed as Winnipeg, Manitoba. Surnames (standardized Russian form) include: Molokanov, Slivkov, Sokhryakov. Download Montrose Index

SS Southwark

This Dominion line steamship departed June 22, 1905, under Captain J.O. Williams, from the port of Liverpool, England. It carried 867 passengers, including 112 Molokans from Kars, Russia. After 10 days at sea, the vessel arrived at the port of Quebec on July 1, 1905. Six Molokans were detained at the Immigration Hospital in Quebec until July 15, 1905 and then deported due to trachoma. The intended destination of all Molokan passengers is listed as Winnipeg, Manitoba. Surnames (standardized Russian form) include: Bukharev, Dvornin, Fadeev, Fetisov, Kholopov, Kulikov, Metchkov, Mokshanov, Morozov, Novikov, Samarin.  Download Southwark Index

SS Montreal

This Canadian Pacific line steamship departed July 18, 1905, under Captain T.C. Evans, from the port of Antwerp, Belgium. It carried 267 passengers, including 24 Molokans from Kars, Russia. After 12 days at sea, the vessel arrived at the port of Quebec on July 29, 1905. The intended destination of all Molokan passengers is listed as Winnipeg, Manitoba. Surnames (standardized Russian form) include: Cheremisin, Pluzhnikov, Shubin, Treglazov.  Download Montreal Index

SS Southwark

This Dominion line steamship departed August 31, 1905, under Captain J.O. Williams, from the port of Liverpool, England. It carried 649 passengers, including 6 Molokans from Kars, Russia. Also accompanied by 182 Doukhobors from Yakutsk, Siberia. After 10 days at sea, the vessel arrived at the port of Quebec on September 9, 1905. The Molokans were detained at the Immigration Hospital in Quebec for an indeterminate period. The intended destination of the Molokan passengers is listed as Winnipeg, Manitoba. Surnames (standardized Russian form) include: Metchkov.  Download Southwark 2 Index

SS Siberian

This Allan line steamship departed January 26, 1907, under Captain J. Catrill, from the port of Liverpool, England. It carried 341 passengers, including 3 Molokans from Kars, Russia. After 15 days at sea, the vessel arrived at the port of Quebec on February 10, 1907. The intended destination of the Molokan passengers is listed as Winnipeg, Manitoba. Surnames (standardized Russian form) include: Karetov, Shvetsov, Voronin.  Download Siberian Index

Border Crossing Records

Over one hundred and ninety Molokans crossed into the United States from Canada via ports of entry at Winnipeg, Manitoba and Vancouver, British Columbia along the U.S.-Canadian border between 1904 and 1907.  The original border crossing records, available online at Ancestry.com, contain the following information for each Molokan immigrant: name, age, birthdate, birthplace, gender, nationality, names of individuals accompanied by, name of nearest relative or friend in former country, and name of nearest relative or friend at destination.  The following index contains a transcription of Molokan border entry records.  Download Border Index

Border crossing record at Winnipeg, Manitoba listing the Novikoff and Chalop(off) families of Molokans, 1905.

Notes

At least one group of Molokan immigrants appears to have arrived in Canada with intentions to stay. In 1905, 160 Molokans from Kars, Russia arrived in Winnipeg, Manitoba seeking land in the Canadian West to settle on and farm. They aroused widespread interest and curiosity among city residents, and received a hearty welcome from local Doukhobors and Russian émigrés.See a newspaper account of their sojourn in Manitoba.

The names recorded in the ship passenger lists and border crossing records are the original Russian, pre-Americanized versions of names. Furthermore, they were written down by officials phonetically the way that they sounded. Therefore, do not expect to find your Molokan ancestor’s name spelled as it is today; realize that your immigrant ancestor may have been illiterate and even if he or she could read Russian, they would not be able to recognize their written name in the records since it was written in English. Researchers must be able to recognize alternate spellings for the surnames they are looking for. To cross reference English spelling variants with the original standardized Russian forms of surnames, visit the Origin & Meaning of Molokan Surnames.

Index to Doukhobor Ship Passenger Surnames

by Jonathan J. Kalmakoff

The following is an index of Doukhobor surnames extracted from over 101 ship passenger lists for the period 1898-1932. Search alphabetically by surname to find the name of the ship that carried Doukhobor passengers with that surname. Then search the Index of Doukhobor Ship Passenger Lists to find the date and port of departure and arrival for the ship, as well as the Library and Archives Canada microfilm reel number and link to online images of the original ship passenger list.

Index – Ch –   D –   E –   F –   G/H –   I –   K –   L –   M –   N –   O –   P –   R –   S –   T –   U –   V –   Y –   Z

 

– A –

Abrosimov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
Androsov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Antyufeev SS Ionian (05.01.02), SS Barcelona (12.07.11), SS Laurentic (14.07.12), SS Canada (22.07.12), SS Ultonia (08.05.13)
Arekhov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99)
Arishchenkov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Corsican (23.06.10), SS Barcelona (12.07.11), SS Roussillon (17.07.28), SS Suffren (03.08.28)
Astafurov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Mount Temple (02.06.07), SS Pisa (02.05.11), SS Ionian (18.11.12), SS Czar (29.07.14)
 

– B –

Babakaev SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Baev SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS La Bretagne (22.05.05), SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
Barabanov SS Royal George (17.07.12)
Baulin SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
Bedinov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Beloivanov SS Ultonia (06.05.12)
Biryukov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Roussillon (17.07.28)
Bludov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Barcelona (12.07.11), SS La Bourdonnais (25.09.27)
Bondarev SS Lake Superior (27.01.99)
Borisenkov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Montfort (20.02.11) 
Borisov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Bulanov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Bykanov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
 

– Ch –

Cherkashev SS Kaiserin Auguste Victoria (23.07.10), SS Roussillon (17.07.28), SS Suffren (03.08.28)
Chernenkov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Canada (11.06.11), SS Barcelona (12.07.11), SS Ultonia (06.05.12), SS Laurentic (14.07.12), SS Roussillon (17.07.28)
Chernov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Lake Erie (29.02.04) 
Chivil’deev SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Dominion (18.12.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Canada (11.06.11), SS Suffren (03.08.28), SS Paris (30.10.28), SS Roussillon (25.09.28)
Chutskov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Mount Temple (09.11.04), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
 

– D –

Danshin SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Montfort (20.02.11)
Davidov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Pisa (02.05.11)
Deminov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Dergausov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Umbria (31.07.04), SS Corinthian (05.12.04), SS Western World (17.08.26)
Dorofeev SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10)
Drozdov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10), SS Royal George (17.07.12), SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
Dubasov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Dutov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Dvortsov SS Southwark (09.09.05)
D’yachkov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
D’yakov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Ultonia (08.05.13)
Dymovsky SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Saint Louis (17.02.07)
 

– E –

Egorov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Eletsky SS Lake Superior (27.01.99)
Esaulov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Ultonia (06.05.12), SS Laurentic (15.06.12), SS Canada (24.06.12)
Evdokimov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
 

– F –

Fedosov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Ausonia (26.05.11)
Filippov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99)
Fofanov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Belgravia (10.04.04)
Fominov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS La Bretagne (22.05.05)
 

– G/H –

Gerasimov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Canada (24.06.12)
Glazkov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Glebov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Glukhov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Golishchev SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Golubov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Lake Superior (20.07.99), SS Saint Louis (17.02.07), SS Furst Bismark (16.08.02), SS Pisa (11.11.11), SS Ultonia (06.05.12)
Goncharov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Superior (20.07.99), SS Bavarian (11.07.03), SS La Bretagne (22.05.05), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Canada (11.06.11), SS Corsican (23.06.10), SS Andania (03.07.27)
Gorelkin SS Californian (19.04.12), SS Megantic (06.05.12), SS Ultonia (06.05.12), SS Laurentic (15.06.12) 
Gor’kov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Cameronia (23.12.24)
Gorshenin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Gorshkov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Gritchin SS Saint Louis (17.02.07), SS Stuttgart (31.01.32)
Gulyaev SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Royal George (17.07.12), SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
 

– I –

Il’yasov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Isakin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10)
Ivashin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Ivin SS Vancouver (10.09.98), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
 

– K –

Kabatov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Friedrich Der Grosse (20.12.06), SS Montfort (20.02.11), SS Teutonic (06.07.12), SS Arabic (17.02.25)
Kalmykov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Barcelona (12.07.11) 
Kanygin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Ultonia (06.05.12)
Karev SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10)
Kasagov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Kazakov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS America (13.07.09), SS Campanello (27.12.10), SS Barcelona (12.07.11), SS Canada (24.06.12), SS Ausonia (26.05.12), SS Laurentic (14.07.12), SS Canada (22.07.12), SS Corsican (28.12.12), SS Cameronia (23.12.24), SS La Bourdonnais (03.07.28)
Khabarov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Khodykin SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Roussillon (17.07.28), SS Suffren (03.08.28)
Khokhlin SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Kholodininoooo SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS America (13.07.09)
Khudyakov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Lake Erie (29.02.04), SS Lake Erie (26.08.04), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Kinyakin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Canada (11.06.11), SS America (13.07.09), SS Ultonia (06.05.12)
Kireev SS Lake Superior (27.01.99)
Kolesnikov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Montfort (25.06.10), SS Canada (11.06.11), SS Canada (24.06.12)
Kondratov SS Roussillon (17.07.28)
Konkin SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Bavarian (02.09.04), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Friedrich Der Grosse (20.12.06), SS Kaiserin Auguste Victoria (13.11.09), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10), SS Montfort (20.02.11), SS Ultonia (06.05.12), SS Ausonia (05.07.12), SS Ausonia (01.03.25)
Korolev SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Kotel’nikov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Amerika (01.07.06), SS Albania (16.05.11), SS Ultonia (06.05.12), SS Ascania (14.05.12)
Kovalev SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Krasnikov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Krygin SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Kuchin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Kuftinov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Kurbatov SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
Kutnyakov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Kuznetsov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Montfort (25.06.10)
 

– L –

Lakhtin SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Roussillon (17.07.28), SS Suffren (03.08.28)
Lapshinov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Lavrenchenkov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Lazarev SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Lebedev SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Canada (11.06.11), SS Laurentic (17.06.11), SS Tunisian (08.07.10), SS La Bourdonnais (28.08.28)
Lezhebokov SS La Savoie (11.11.05)
Lobintsev SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
 

– M –

Makarov SS Pisa (11.11.11)
Makaseev SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Roussillon (17.07.28)
Makeev SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Canada (04.11.05)
Makhonin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Canada (11.06.11)
Makhortov SS Vancouver (10.09.98), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Saint Louis (17.02.07), SS Dominion (17.09.05)
Malakhov SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Cameronia (23.12.24), SS Western World (17.08.26)
Malikov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Ultonia (06.05.12)
Malov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10), SS Montfort (20.02.11), SS Barcelona (12.07.11), SS Grampian (30.12.11), SS Ultonia (06.05.12)
Markin SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Tunisian (24.12.10), SS Corsican (23.06.10), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10), SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
Markov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Maslov SS Laurentic (14.07.12)
Matrosov SS La Savoie (11.11.05)
Medvedev SS Lake Superior (27.01.99)
Miroshnikov SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Mitin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
Morozov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Ionian (13.02.04), SS Lake Erie (26.12.11), SS La Bretagne (22.05.05)
Mzhel’sky SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS La Bourdonnais (28.08.28), SS Suffren (03.08.28)
 

– N –

Nagornov SS Corsican (23.06.10)
Nechvolodov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Negreev SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10), SS Canada (24.06.12), SS Duchess of Bedford (02.08.28)
Nemanikhin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Novokshonov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Belgravia (10.04.04), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Nozhkin SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
 

– O –

Obedkov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Corsican (23.06.10) 
Ostrikov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Ozerov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
 

– P –

Panferkov SS Lake Superior (20.07.99)
Parakhin SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Parkin SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Pepin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Peregudov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Perepolkin SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Corsican (23.06.10), SS Laurentic (14.07.12)
Pereverzev SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Kaiserin Auguste Victoria (13.11.09), SS Barcelona (12.07.11) 
Petrov SS Albania (16.05.11)
Plaksin SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Planidin SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Saint Louis (17.02.07), SS Barcelona (12.07.11), SS Ultonia (06.05.12), SS Canada (24.06.12)
Plotnikov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Montfort (20.02.11), SS Mauretania (14.12.25)
Podmarev SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS La Bourdonnais (25.09.27), SS Roussillon (17.07.28)
Podovinnikov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Podovsky SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10)
Pogozhev SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Polovnikov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Ascania (23.03.30)
Ponomarev SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10)
Popov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Lake Superior (20.07.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Friedrich Der Grosse (20.12.06), SS Ultonia (06.05.12), SS Teutonic (03.08.12), SS Antonia (13.06.24), SS Western World (17.08.26)
Postnikov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Potapov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Canopic (22.11.22)
Pozdnyakov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Sarmatian (20.10.05)
Pryamorukov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
Pugachev SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Ultonia (06.05.12)
Pykhtin SS Canada (24.06.12), SS Teutonic (03.08.12), SS Roussillon (17.07.28) 
 

– R –

Razinkin SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Remezov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10)
Repin SS Ultonia (06.05.12)
Rezantsev SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS America (13.07.09), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10), SS Canada (11.06.11), SS Barcelona (12.07.11), SS Canada (24.06.12), SS Ausonia (05.07.12), SS Laurentic (14.07.12), SS Teutonic (03.08.12)
Rybalkin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Pisa (02.05.11), SS Ultonia (06.05.12), SS Ascania (14.05.12)
Rybin SS Lake Huron (23.01.99), SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10), SS Teutonic (25.06.11), SS Teutonic (21.07.11)
Ryl’kov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Laurentic (14.07.12)
 

– S –

Sakhatov SS Western World (17.08.26)
Salykin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Lake Superior (20.07.99), SS Bremen (30.08.04), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Friedrich Der Grosse (20.12.06), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10)
Samoylov SS Corsican (23.06.10)
Samorodin SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Samsonov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Canada (11.06.11) 
Saprikin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Canada (24.06.12)
Savenkov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Barcelona (12.07.11), SS Canada (24.06.12), SS Ausonia (26.05.12), SS Montclare (20.11.26), SS La Bourdonnais (28.08.28), SS Ausonia (05.07.12), SS Royal Edward #1, SS Teutonic (03.08.12), Royal Edward (19.11.12)
Semenov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Ultonia (06.05.12), SS Empress of Scotland (09.06.25)
Shapkin SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10)
Shchekinovoioo SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10)
Shcherbakov SS Belgravia (10.04.04), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Shchukin SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Lake Superior (20.07.99), SS Lake Ontario (10.10.02), SS La Bretagne (22.05.05), SS Canada (28.07.05), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Sherstobitov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10), SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
Shilov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Shishkin SS Lake Superior (27.01.99)
Shkuratov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Shlyakhov SS Teutonic (25.06.11)
Shtuchnov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
Slastukhin SS Ultonia (08.05.13)
Sofonov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Solov’ev SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Sopov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Storozhev SS Canada (11.06.11), SS Barcelona (12.07.11), SS Canada (24.06.12), SS Teutonic (03.08.12), SS Canada (19.08.12), SS Roussillon (17.07.28), SS La Bourdonnais (28.08.28), SS Roussillon (25.09.28), SS Roussillon (08.04.30), SS Roussillon (26.07.30)
Strelyaev SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Montfort (20.02.11), SS Albania (16.05.11), SS Ultonia (06.05.12), SS Cameronia (23.12.24), SS Roussillon (17.07.28)
Strukov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Roussillon (17.07.28), SS Suffren (03.08.28), SS Roussillon (25.09.28)
Stupnikov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Sukharev SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Montezuma (07.09.04), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Canada (11.06.11) 
Sukhorukov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Lake Superior (20.07.99), SS Canada (11.06.11), SS Ultonia (06.05.12), SS Ausonia (05.07.12), SS Teutonic (03.08.12)
Sukhoveev SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Sukochev SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Susoev SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Svetlichnov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Western World (17.08.26)
Svetlikov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99)
Svetlishchev SS Southwark (09.09.05)
 

– T –

Taranov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Blucher (16.08.03), SS Canopic (22.11.22), SS Roussillon (17.07.28), SS La Bourdonnais (28.08.28)
Tarasov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Terekhov SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Tikhonov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99)
Tomilin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Trofimenkov SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
Trubitsin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
 

– U –

Uglov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10), SS Laurentic (14.07.12)
Usachev SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
 

– V –

Vanin SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Canada (11.06.11), SS Roussillon (17.07.28)
Vanzhov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Stuttgart (31.01.32)
Vasilenkov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Vereshchagin SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Canada (06.08.11), SS Mauretania (14.12.25), SS Stuttgart (31.01.32)
Verigin SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Lake Ontario (10.10.02), SS Lake Champlain (17.12.02), SS Amerika (01.07.06), SS La Bretagne (22.05.05), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Saint Louis (17.02.07), SS Mauretania (14.12.25), SS Berengeria (16.09.27), SS Aquitania (07.07.28)
Vlasov SS Corsican (23.06.10)
Vorob’ev SS La Bretagne (22.05.05)
Voronkov SS Barcelona (12.07.11) 
Voykin SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05), SS Prinz Adalbert (27.06.10), SS Grampian (30.12.11)
Vyatkin SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Ultonia (08.05.13)
Vyshlov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
 

– Y –

Yashchenkov SS Barcelona (12.07.11)
Yuritsin SS Ultonia (08.05.13)
 

 Z –

Zaitsev SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Ultonia (06.05.12)
Zarshchikov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Zbitnev SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Zharikov SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Zhivotkov SS Lake Huron (06.06.99)
Zhmaev SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Zhuravlev SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Lake Superior (20.07.99)
Zibarev SS Southwark (09.09.05)
Zubkov SS Lake Superior (09.05.99), SS Mount Temple (04.01.12)
Zybin SS Lake Superior (27.01.99), SS Lake Huron (06.06.99), SS Lake Superior (20.07.99)

Notes

As several of the ships listed above made more than one voyage with Doukhobor passengers, the date of arrival in Canada or the United States (dd/mm/yy) is included above for ease of reference.

This surname index is not all-inclusive, as two ship passenger lists containing over 3,200 Doukhobor immigrants are lost or incomplete. First, the passenger list for the S.S. Lake Huron (23.01.99) was lost in Winnipeg, Manitoba by Immigration Branch officials in the early 20th century and is presumed destroyed. Second, the ship’s purser on board the S.S. Lake Superior (27.01.99) recorded only 899 of the 1,997 Doukhobor passengers.

If your family immigrated to Canada in 1899 but does not appear in the ship passenger index above, then by process of elimination, they probably sailed aboard the SS Lake Huron (23.01.99) or the SS Lake Superior (27.01.99). As indicated above, these ship passenger lists are missing or incomplete. If they immigrated from Tiflis province, Russia, they probably sailed aboard the SS Lake Huron (23.01.99). If they immigrated from Elizavetpol or Kars province, Russia, they probably sailed aboard the SS Lake Superior (27.01.99). 

The names in the ship passenger lists are the original Russian, pre-Canadianized versions of names. Furthermore, they were written down by the ship’s purser phonetically the way that they sounded. Therefore, do not expect to find your Doukhobor ancestor’s name spelled as it is today; realize that your immigrant ancestor was probably illiterate and even if he or she could read Russian, they would not be able to recognize the written name since it was written in English. With this in mind, I have used the standard spelling of each surname in this index, based on the U.S. Library of Congress System.

Bibliography

  • Lapshinoff, Steve & Jonathan Kalmakoff. Doukhobor Ship Passenger Lists, 1898-1928 (Crescent Valley: 2001).
  • Library and Archives Canada, Microfilm Reel Nos. C-4519, C-4542, C-4784, C-7341, T-481, T-482, T-483, T-484, T-485, T-486, T-494, T-497, T-498, T-505, T-513, T-518, T-4692, T-4699, T-4721, T-4738, T-4741, T-4744, T-4745, T-4768, T-4769, T-4774, T-4775, T-4776, T-4777, T-4778, T-4779, T-4783, T-4784, T-4785, T-4787, T-4788, T-4789, T-4790, T-4794, T-4795, T-4823, T-14715, T-14729, T-14734, T-14746, T-14801, T-14811, T-14815, T-14816, T-14825, T-14826, T-14829, T-14931, T-15160 and T-15224.
  • U.S. National Archives and Records Administration, Microfilm Reel Nos. T715-293, T715-497, T715-445, T715-480, T715-489, T715-577, T715-3220, T715-3588, T715-3905, T715-4374 and 547.

Guide to Doukhobor Passport & Visa Records

by Jonathan J. Kalmakoff

Passports and visas are among the often overlooked documents that we may have about our Doukhobor ancestors. An official document issued by a country to one of its citizens, the passport allows an individual to leave and return to his or her country of citizenship and facilitates travel from one country to another. A visa, by contrast, is an endorsement by the country to be visited permitting entry into that country.  The following guide describes Russian and Canadian passport and visa records used historically by Doukhobors – their background, content, usefulness and availability.

Passports in Russia

In Russia, the passport system was introduced in 1719 during the reign of Peter the Great.  Whereas in most European countries, the main task of the passport system was to ensure peace and order, in Russia the passport also served as a means to regulate tax payments, military service and other obligations to the state.  Throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, both internal passports and foreign passports were issued to Russian citizens.

Internal Passports

Internal passports were issued to Russian citizens who traveled within the Empire outside of their registered place of residence.  These passports were granted for a limited period (depending on social class) and then had to be renewed.  Note that on occasion, for one reason or another, such passports would be denied to Doukhobor applicants.  Citizens were required to present their internal passports on demand to Tsarist officials.  Those found away from their registered place of residence without passports were subject to fines or imprisonment.  Restrictions on passports were eventually lifted in 1903 and the internal passport system was abandoned altogether after the Revolution.

Russian internal passport No. 1305 issued August 21, 1917.  Photo courtesy Mikhail Kroutikhin.

Issued by district police officers, the internal passport included the following data: the name, patronymic and surname, occupation, age, faith, place of residence, social class and facial features of the citizen, as well as date of issue, destination, duration and purpose of travel.  Accompanying family members were listed in the same passport.  It was printed in Russian.

There is no centralized repository of internal passports in Russia.  Many of these records were lost and destroyed by war and revolution.  Those that have survived are housed in various regional and state archives.  Individual copies of internal passports issued to Doukhobors may have also survived among family papers and memorabilia in Canada.  Researchers who come across these rare records should take steps to ensure their preservation.

Foreign Passports

Foreign passports were required by citizens of Imperial Russia in order to travel abroad.  These passports were granted for a limited period of five years.  Arriving at the Russian border station or port of departure, the traveller had to present his or her passport to border officers for inspection.  If approved, the passport was stamped and returned to the traveller.  However, if the passport was not in order, it was not stamped and the traveller had no chance to pass across the frontier.  

Note that the 7,500 Doukhobors who emigrated from Russia in 1899 were issued foreign passports but not permitted to keep them. They were confiscated prior to their departure. This was because the Doukhobors were permitted to leave Russia only on the condition that they never return. However, the 1,160 Doukhobors who emigrated from Russia after 1899 were issued foreign passports and permitted to retain them like other Russian citizens. 

Russian foreign passport No. 5026 issued to Ivan Evseyevich Konkin & family on July 24, 1904.
National Archives of Canada, M-7670.

Issued by local governors, the foreign passport included the following data: the name, patronymic and surname, occupation, age, faith, place of residence, information about the family, facial features and photo (sometimes) of the citizen, as well as date of issue, destination and purpose of travel.  The passport stamp also indicated the date of inspection as well as the border station or port of departure.  Accompanying family members were listed in the same passport.  It was printed in Russian.

There is no centralized repository of foreign passports in Russia.  As with internal passports, many foreign passports were lost and destroyed by wars and revolution.  Those that have survived are housed in various regional and state archives. 

Some foreign passports were collected by Russian consuls in Canada.  The Likacheff-Ragosine-Mathers (LI-RA-MA) Collection at the National Archives of Canada consists of documents created by the Imperial Russian Consular offices in Canada during the period from 1898 to 1922.  The Passport/Identity Papers series consists of 11,400 files on immigrants from the Russian Empire who settled in Canada.  The files include documents such as passport applications and background questionnaires.  However, only ten of these files relate to Doukhobor immigrants.  See the Index of Doukhobors in the LI-RA-MA Collection for a listing of individual files.  

Prior to 1923, it was unnecessary for immigrants to possess a valid passport in order to gain entry into Canada.  Regardless, those immigrants who had passports issued in their homelands kept them; they were not required to surrender them to the Government of Canada.  Consequently, copies of Russian foreign passports issued to Doukhobors (who emigrated after 1899) may have survived among family papers and memorabilia in Canada.  Researchers who come across these rare records should take steps to ensure their preservation.

Passports in Canada

Since 1862, the Government of Canada has issued passports to Canadian citizens for travel to a foreign country.  Early passports were issued as single-sheet certificates with the official seal.  In 1915, Canada switched to the British form of passport, a ten-section single sheet folder printed in English only.  Then, in 1920, Canada adopted a booklet-type passport.  Since 1926, Canadian passports have been printed bilingual.  Until 1947, two kinds of passports were issued in Canada, one for British-born citizens and one for naturalized citizens.  That same year, the Canadian Citizenship Act, which stipulates that only Canadian citizens are eligible for a Canadian passport, came into effect.  Canadian passports are valid for five years. 

Canadian passport No. 17928 issued to Koozma & Polly Tarasoff on November 13, 1931.
Photo courtesy Koozma J. Tarasoff.

Issued from 1862 to 1947 by the Governor General, and since 1947 by the Minister of External Affairs, the Canadian passport includes the following data: the name and surname, date of birth, place of birth, place of residence, physical description, photo, occupation (sometimes), nationality, date of naturalization and photo of the citizen, as well as date of issue and expiry. 

There is no centralized repository of Canadian passports.  The Government of Canada did not keep copies of passport applications nor passports issued to its citizens.  Individual copies may be found among family papers and memorabilia.

Note: a special collection of passports for Doukhobor leader Peter “Chistiakov” Verigin from 1934 to 1936 and a delegation of Doukhobors to Russia in 1931 is housed at the National Archives of Canada (RG25, External Affairs, Volume 1580, File 1931-1935).

Visas

Many countries require possession of a valid visa as a condition of entry for foreigners.  A visa is a formal endorsement by the government of a country giving a certain individual permission to enter the country for a given period of time and for certain purposes.  Visas are typically stamped or attached into the recipient’s passport. 

Since 1923, immigrants have had to secure a Canadian visa in order to gain entry into Canada.  Prior to that time, a visa was unnecessary.  It follows that most Doukhobors did not require a visa when they immigrated to Canada, having done so prior to 1923.  However, they may have required a foreign visa if they subsequently travelled abroad from Canada. 

The need or absence of need of a visa generally depends on the citizenship of the applicant, the intended duration of the stay, and the activities that the applicant may wish to undertake in the country he or she visits; these may delineate different formal categories of visas, with different issuance conditions.  Examples of different visas include: transit visas, tourist visas, business visas, student visas, research visas, diplomatic visas, journalist visas and work visas.

U.S. visa issued to John Nichvolodoff and family on April 4, 1923. Click photos to view larger images.
Photo courtesy John Nechvolodoff.

Depending on the issuing country, a visa typically includes the following data: the name and surname, date of birth, place of birth, place of residence, occupation, nationality, photo and personal references of the traveller, as well as the date of issue, destination, length and purpose of travel.  Accompanying family members are often listed.  It is printed in the official language of the issuing country.

Notes

Passports and visas are, of course, sources of limited value.  They are of use only if your Doukhobor ancestor travelled abroad and was required to secure them.  Those that still exist may be difficult to locate.  Nevertheless, where they are found among personal records, they can be an excellent source of information for genealogists.  The researcher should never assume that a Doukhobor ancestor did not require these documents.

As a source for anything other than the traveling done on that passport or visa, passports and visas are generally considered a secondary source rather than a primary source of genealogical information.  Nevertheless, this does not negate the information one might find in these documents.  The information contained in these documents should be cross-referenced with other sources to ensure their accuracy.

Bibliography

  • Canadian Genealogy Centre, “Passports”. Retrieved Apr. 09, 2005, from www.genealogy.gc.ca.
  • Citizenship and Immigration Canada, “Forging Our Legacy: Canadian Citizenship and Immigration, 1900-1977”. Retrieved Apr. 09, 2005, from http://www.cic.gc.ca.html.
  • Government of Canada, Canadian passport No. 17928 issued November 13, 1931.
  • Greenwood, Val D., “The Researcher’s Guide to American Genealogy”, 3rd Ed., (Baltimore: The Genealogical Publishing Co., 2000).
  • Imperial Russia, Foreign Passport No. 5026 issued July 24, 1904.
  • Imperial Russia, Internal Passport No. 1305 issued August 21, 1917.
  • McLure, Rhonda R. (2000). “Passports – Primary or Secondary Material?” Retrieved Apr. 09, 2005, from Overhead in GenForum Web site: http://www.genealogy.com.html.
  • National Archives of Canada, LI-RA-MA Collection, Passport/Identity Series, Microfilm Nos. H1971-H1975.
  • Passport Canada, “History of Passports”. Retrieved Apr. 09, 2005, from http://www.ppt.gc.ca.asp.
  • United States of America, Declarations of Aliens About to Depart For the United States, dated April 4, 1923.
  • US National Archives and Records Administration, “Passport Applications”. Retrieved Apr. 09,2005, from http://www.archives.gov.html

This article was reproduced by permission in the Bulletin Vol. 36 No. 2 (Regina: Saskatchewan Genealogical Society, June 2005).

Peter “Lordly” Verigin – Doukhobor Leader Arrives

Manitoba Morning Free Press

On December 15, 1902, Peter "Lordly" Verigin arrived in Canada to assume leadership of the Doukhobors after spending nearly 16 years in exile in Siberia. The following article, reproduced from the Manitoba Morning Free Press (Tuesday, December 23, 1902), details his arrival in Winnipeg, Manitoba en route to the Doukhobor colonies near Yorkton, Saskatchewan.

Peter Verigin, Whose Personality Sways His People, En route to Join Them From Siberian Exile – Is Noncommittal – Russian Brutality

Doukhobor leader Peter “Lordly” Verigin

For three hours before the train from the east pulled in yesterday afternoon, a number of people patiently promenaded the platform awaiting its arrival. One of them, a woman, has been there since early morning. She was awaiting her brother, whom she had not seen for fifteen years. She knew nothing of the congestion of traffic along the C.P.R. (Canadian Pacific Railway) and so kept steadfast watch lest the train might get in before its advertised time, determined, no matter when it arrived, that her brother should find someone there to meet him.

When at a little before 3 o’clock the train drew in, there alighted from one of the front coaches a tall, quiet looking man, carrying a black leather valise studded with nickel bosses arranged in curious design. A dark blue gaberdine reached half way to the knees, over his trousers were fastened close fitting, dark grey leggings, piped at the edges with black cloth. His headgear was a black fedora. Around his neck he wore a long cord fastened to which was a heavy silver watch and a richly chased gold pencil. Alongside the watch pocket was a fountain pen, secured by loops of the cloth. 

The traveller was Peter Verigin, newly come to Canada after fifteen years of Siberian exile. The woman awaiting him was his sister.

In the crush of Christmas travel it was some time before those looking for the new arrival could find the object of their search. Accompanied by Interpreter Harvey, who had gone east to meet Verigin, and by Ivan Ivin, Paul Planidin and Semeon Rieben, three Doukhobors who had been deputized by the communities to extend the Doukhobor leader a welcome on his arrival. Verigin walked eastward along the platform.

A Happy Reunion

His sister saw him, standing half a head taller than the average, and ran towards him, followed by the other waiting Doukhobors, with joyful cries. Verigin dropped his valise, took off his had, opened his arms and cried “Anna!” He kissed his sister and the others and quietly walked on toward the immigration buildings, being introduced on the way to Mr. H.P. Archer, Crerar, of Yorkton – both of whom of Swan River Immigration Agent have been for days in the city awaiting his coming – to Mrs. Almanopsky, who acted s interpreter, and the Free Press representative.

On the party’s arriving at the immigration buildings, Verigin was shown the room set apart for his use. Here he spent a little more time chatting with his sister and friends, enquiring after his mother, who is 86 years of age and who lives at Poterpevshie village with his sister, whose full name is Anna Vasilievna Verigina. Then, after the baggage had been packed away and the foregoing domestic enquiries made, the party moved downstairs to Acting (Immigration) Commission Moffatt’s office.

Mr. Moffatt greeted Verigin warmly, welcoming him to the west in the name of the Dominion authorities. In answer to his enquiries as to his voyage, Verigin said it was a long journey, good but rough. He had sailed from Liverpool after crossing Europe from Moscow to Warsaw, and thence to England.

“You’ll be glad to be in a country,” said Mr. Moffatt, “where there is religious and individual freedom”. “I haven’t looked around yet,” answered Verigin through an interpreter, “so I cannot yet tell whether this is a free country or not”. “You know, however,” said Mr. Moffatt, “that in Canada we do not put people in prison because of their political or religious views”. “Oh yes,” answered Verigin, “I know that”. “People have been looking for your coming for a long time,” said Agent Crerar. “There are 300 Doukhobors at Yorkton station, watching every train for you. And there is one person very anxious to see you – your mother”.

Wants to See His Mother

Verigin had up till that time been quietly courteous and dignified: but his manner underwent a change, becoming alertly interested. “Did you see my mother; yes?” he asked. “When did you see her? Was she well?” Mr. Crerar satisfied him on these points, and then Verigin asked him when the train could take him there. “I am in a hurry to see my mother,” he said. “There is no train till tomorrow, yes?” “I would go today if I could; yes!” Then he realized that perhaps he might be taking up too much of the commissioner’s time. “Shall I see you again, yes,” he asked, “You are perhaps now too occupied?”

Anastasia Verigin, mother of Doukhobor leader Peter “Lordly” Verigin

Being answered on this point, Mr. Moffatt asked him concerning his visit to Ottawa. “I couldn’t talk much business,” he said, “for I had not seen the Doukhobors. Of myself I knew nothing of their troubles; only of what I heard. They told me the people would not take up their homestead lands”. “Did you hear about the pilgrimage?” asked Mr. Crerar, “and of the action taken by the government to prevent the pilgrims from being frozen to death?” “I had not heard any particulars,” answered Verigin. “it was in print in Russian papers. They said that 200 people were frozen to death.

Mr. Crerar told him that this was entirely false. Pointing to the Free Press representative, who was the only newspaper man present at the interview, Mr. Crerar told Verigin that he had accompanied the pilgrims throughout their wanderings, and personally knew of all the facts in connection therewith. “Is that so, yes?” said Verigin. “I shall have much to ask him”.

Verigin’s Personality

Throughout the interview Verigin said little, only speaking in reply to questions, and allowing the others to do the talking. His manner was marked with a natural courtesy and simple dignity that would single him out for notice anywhere. His voice is low, and of singular sweetness. Physically, Verigin is a splendid type of his race. Tall and strongly built, and of erect and graceful carriage, he would attract attention among hundreds of good looking men. His features are regular and his skin of an olive pallor. His hair and beard, which is luxuriant, are black as jet. His eyes are dark and thoughtful, and his whole expression that of a man who has suffered much, and has triumphed over everything through the force of kingly courage and constancy.

It was evident that he would make no statement as to his future actions or the counsel he would give the Doukhobors, who for months have been anxiously awaiting his coming, till he had personally familiarized himself with every phase of the situation. Mr. Moffatt, indeed, and wisely, did not attempt to draw from Verigin any statement. “You will know all about the troubles the government has had with the Doukhobors,” he said, “when you get among them. We all hope your coming may have a very good effect. We will do anything possible to help you. You must be tired after your long journey. And you must be hungry. So now I’ll say goodbye to you, and wish you a safe journey to your mother tomorrow.”

Verigin listened gravely, and when this was translated, rose and shook hands with the commissioner. “I thank you very much,” said he, “I hope my coming may be good. I hope so indeed,” and so went upstairs to his room.

May Not Stay in Canada

In a few minutes a message was sent down to the Free Press man, asking him to join Verigin in the latter’s room. The reporter found Planidin, Rieben and Verigin’s sister busy in preparing a meal for the traveller. Verigin sat in an armchair, and, after welcoming the newspaper man, resumed his conversation with Mrs. Almanopsky, asking many questions as to the location of the different Doukhobor lands and communities. Before he had concluded, Agent Crerar came up to ascertain if Verigin would stay long in Yorkton. Representative Doukhobors from every village in the Yorkton and Swan River colonies were there, and the government desired to have a list compiled of all the Doukhobors eligible for homesteads, the number of those willing to take up land, the number of those who had already made entry and the reasons for not making entry on the part of those who refused. Verigin said he did not want to delay to hold any such conference at the present time; he wanted to get to the village where his mother was. “I may not stay in Canada,” he said, “I may go back to Russia.”

“Could all these people see me tomorrow night?” he asked. But it was explained that the train did not arrive till late. “Then let it be in two or three weeks,” he said.

The conversation drifted to Russian topics. Mr. Crerar said that he had heard the Tsar proposed releasing all Siberian exiles at the New Year. Verigin laughed heartily. “You must have read that in a newspaper,” said he, “what is said in newspapers is not always true. It is only the students that are going to be released.”

His Exiledom

The Free Press man asked Verigin to say something concerning his life in exile. “That would be a long story,” he said. “If I could talk English I should much like to tell you. But you cannot always trust interpreters. But I was sent to exile from the Caucasus for five years; when that was passed I was sentenced for another five years, and when that, too, had gone, I was given yet another five years. When I was allowed to go free I wanted to go to the Caucasus to see my wife and son, but the government would not allow me, nor would they allow them to come to see me. They might have come to Canada with the Doukhobors four years ago, but they would not because it would take them further from me, and I do not know whether the government will give them passports to come to Canada, and perhaps I shall never see them.”

As Verigin talked of his wife his voice broke several times. He sprang up from his chair and paced up and down the room while speaking of them, and it was some minutes before he regained his composure. 

“What did you do while in exile?” next asked the reporter. Verigin responded, “I toiled, ate and slept, of course. I used an axe and carpentered and built stores. We had all to earn our own living, for the Russian government allow nothing for the sustenance of its exiles. Many times I asked for a trial, but it was always refused. I was never condemned by a judge, or by due process of law, but by an “administrative order” of the government, which enables them to detain any person objective to it”. 

“Are the reports of cruelty and ill usage of the exiles, of which we sometimes hear, true?”

Russian Brutality

“In what way you mean, ill use?” answered Verigin, “the exiles are sent to a village. They have to walk all the way. If they are tired and fall behind, they are beaten. If they try to run away they are shot. If they go outside the village boundaries they are punished; maybe sent down the mines. In Irkutsk there were some student exiles. They said they wanted the limits of their walks extended, that it was ridiculous to confine them in such a small space. Soon after they were told to march into a building. Expecting to hear a reply to their request they went. The building was surrounded by soldiers. They fired a volley, wounding many of the students and killing two. 

At Moscow, Verigin saw Count Tolstoy, who was rejoiced at his release. “I wonder if the government hasn’t made a mistake,” he said, “you’d better get to Canada soon for they may change their minds and give you another five years.”

By this time Verigin’s sister and the others had completed their preparations for the meal. The kettle was set on the white table cloth – woven by the Doukhobor women – (it was spotlessly clean and did not soil it in the least) to use as a samovar. Bread with Cross & Blackwell’s jam were the staples. Loaf sugar was poured out on a plate and eaten as a relish. Verigin cut a lemon in thin slices and poured tea, inviting the Free Press representative to join him at his meal. During the progress of the repast, Verigin chatted with perfect ease on general topics. He said he wanted to take a walk around the city (of Winnipeg) that evening as his Doukhobor friends had often written to him of its marvels. He looked with some surprise at the electric light, when it was turned on, but merely remarked, “I am seeing new things all the time.”

The Doukhobors at Veregin, Saskatchewan, 1911

Manitoba Free Press

In 1911, the Christian Community of Universal Brotherhood was in a period of transition. Two thousand of its members had relocated from Saskatchewan to British Columbia where they were establishing communal settlements and enterprises. Another six thousand waited to join them. While they remained in Saskatchewan, these driven, hard-working Doukhobors productively operated the CCUB agricultural, commercial and industrial enterprises there. The following account by a Winnipeg, Manitoba visitor to their community at Veregin, Saskatchewan describes the material prosperity and substantial progress of what was already then a multi-million-dollar enterprise. Published in the Manitoba Free Press on August 26, 1911. Photos courtesy the Doukhobor Discovery Centre Autochrome Exhibit.

Nearly eleven years ago, eight thousand people harried from the realm of the Czar, sought refuge in this Canada, and under the shadow of the Union Jack set up their altars and built their homes. These Doukhobors, for it was they, now as a community, count their worldly possessions in six figures, and M. W. Cazakoff, general manager of the community, told me that this year fully $1,000,000 would pass through his hands. In addition to this all, the money lent them at the time of their immigration, including the $185,000 given by the Quakers of Great Britain and United States, has been paid back.

To many of the Canadian people, the term Doukhobor, if thought of at all, is tucked without anchor under the genus foreigner, usually has a shawl tied under its chin, and if the philosopher in question is a very deep philosopher indeed, he adds that the Doukhobor lives in villages and, oh yes, is given to going on religious marches.

CCUB general store, Verigin, Saskatchewan, 1911.  Courtesy the Doukhobor Discovery Centre Autochrome Exhibit.

To such I recommend a visit to Veregin, the headquarters of the Yorkton community settlement. In the town itself is the trading store of the Doukhobor society, the brick yards and the flour mill, and dotting the prairie out from it are fifty-five villages, bits of the old world framed in a setting of Canadian fields of grain. A private telephone line connects the settlement and the latest acquisition is a large size touring car. Three to four hundred magnificent horses are also the property of the society, and only the very latest in machinery and in methods of farming finds place with the Doukhobors. They have 100,000 acres of land, and in addition, the government has lent them for an indefinite period 18,000 acres – 15 acres a head.

As one of my people remarked, “Peter Verigin runs the show and Peter Verigin is no slouch”. As every one knows Mr. Verigin is the leader of the Doukhobors – heaven-sent, they believe – and his word is law. All properties and monies are in his name. Strange that a people should resist with their lives the dominance of one individual, only to seek that of another. By the way, Mr. Verigin prefers “Doukhobor” spelled “Duohobors”. At present he is in British Columbia superintending the establishment of the Kootenay-Columbia Preserving Works at Brilliant and Nelson. To British Columbia, two thousand of his people have already gone, and the rest will follow, so many this fall and the rest in two years. Especially among the older ones, the prospect of the western province is alluring. “Columbia she like Rusee, Beeg Mountains there, Me hurt in my heart for the mountains,” and the old patriarch who was speaking waved his hand with patient resignation towards my beloved prairies. Verity to each of us his own land.

Visitors at the CCUB flour mill and elevator, Verigin, Saskatchewan, 1911. This mill would process grains into flour and then ship to various destinations. Courtesy Doukhobor Discovery Centre Autochrome Exhibit.

But to return to the Doukhobors at Veregin. Tall, clear eyed, they stand, for the most part fair, but with here and there a dark face, publishing the story of the proximity in the old land of the Turkish border, kindly, courteous always, and with an almost infinite capacity for minding their own business. It is only when one stays with and among them that one discovers underneath the courteous veneer, a solid wall of purpose, and that purpose is rooted and grounded in religious conviction. A Doukhobor and his religion are one, and form his religion springs his whole plan and system of life.

Each leader chooses his successor, divine revelation being given him to that end, and this leader has absolute power. “Our last leader,” explained young Peter Verigin’s nephew to the Peter, “was a woman and she choose Mr. Verigin. We not know, perhaps he not know himself, who be next.”

Each year in March an annual meeting is held and to this meeting each village sends five representatives – three men and two women. Then an account is given of the year’s work, and plans are made for the coming year. A committee of three is elected, whose duty it is to advise with Mr. Verigin as to policy of the society.

CCUB members plow the prairies near Veregin, Saskatchewan, 1911. Courtesy the Doukhobor Discovery Centre Autochrome Exhibit.

A tenet of their faith teaches them that all property should be held in common; therefore the community system. Each village is given so many acres of land, according to the population of the village and to the fertility of the soil. Population varies from 50 to 250. Each village is like one family, running its own account at society stores and being credited with all the produce it may deliver. One man buys for the whole village, clothing, food, etc.

“But suppose,” asked my friend with the satiable curiosity, “two girls wanted a dress off the same piece of goods, and there was only enough for one. What would you do then?” “Go buy some more just like,” answered nephew Peter laconically. “But,“ she persisted, “don’t your people ever feel cross one with the other?” Such abounding peace and goodwill did hardly seem canny. “Yes,” answered Peter the solid, “then the old men of the village go speak with them and they are kind once more.”

This year the colony at Veregin has ten thousand acres in crop, seven thousand in oats, and three thousand in wheat. Flax is also grown to some extent. Horse ranching as an industry has also grown to considerable proportions. A few years ago cattle and sheep farming was an important factor, but the Doukhobors felt that such a practice was inconsistent with their religion, which forbids the taking of life. Now only enough cattle and sheep are kept to supply milk and wool to the colony. This spring Mr. Verigin intimated that all the men between the ages of 18 and 60, except those needed for the manning of the brickyard, etc. should go out among the “English” and bring back this fall each two hundred dollars to his own village. Of course they went. “Theirs not to make reply.”

Workers pose inside the engine room to the cable carriage assembly at the CCUB brick works, Veregin, Saskatchewan, 1911.  Courtesy the Doukhobor Discovery Centre Autochrome Exhibit.

The brick yard employs 14 men, and this season will export 1,000,000 bricks. Into the great mixing bins the clay is dumped where the power of the great engines mixes it freely. Then into the moulds and on to the trays it goes after which the formed bricks are slipped along the trolleys to the drying sheds. After so many days there, according “as the sun she is,” they are carried to the immense kilns where for nine days and nights 235,000 are at one time kept under steady fire.

Between the brickyard and the mill is a blacksmith shop, and as an example of Doukhobor attention to detail it was noticed that the yard was literally full of wagons and binders being repaired and made fit against the coming harvest.

The mill fitted with the latest machinery stands on a slight elevation just above a slough. At least, the body of water in question would be a slough to most Canadians, but the Doukhobor has dammed back the water till it is ten feet deep, and thus is the source of the mill water supply. Two hundred barrels of flour and one hundred barrels of oatmeal is the daily output. In close proximity to the mill stands the elevator, really a double elevator, for it is fitted with two engines, one working for the mill and one for the public. The Doukhobors handle not only the grain of their own people, but also buy from the general public Mr. Cazakoff told me that last year he had often counted sixty teams in the yard at once waiting to unload.

Visitors and workers pose at the CCUB elevator, Verigin, Saskatchewan, 1911.  Courtesy the Doukhobor Discovery Centre Autochrome Exhibit. K.M.H, Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Special thanks to Corinne Postnikoff of Castlegar, British Columbia for her assistance with the data input of this article.

The Doukhobor Homestead Crisis, 1898-1907

by Kathlyn (Katya) Szalasznyj

In 1899, the Doukhobors settled on homestead lands reserved for them in Saskatchewan by the Dominion government. Materially, they made substantial progress, opening up vast tracts to cultivation over a short period. Legally, however, they had problems with every step of the process. At base was their belief that land belonged to God and any division of land that recognized individual ownership was a violation of God’s laws. Exacerbating this was the Doukhobors’ misunderstanding about the way in which land would be granted, and the government’s misconception of the full implications of the Doukhobor commitment to communalism. By 1905, thousands of Doukhobors refused to take patents on their homesteads. Land hungry settlers and a growing public backlash forced the government to seek a speedy resolution to the ‘Doukhobor issue’ resulting in the cancellation of thousands of homestead entries in 1907. The following scholarly article examines the Doukhobor homestead crisis.  Reproduced by permission from “Spirit Wrestlers: Centennial Papers in Honour of Canada’s Doukhobor Heritage”, Kathlyn Szalasznyi, Gatineau, Quebec, Canadian Museum of Civilization, 1995 © Canadian Museum of Civilization.

Saskatchewan was a place with a future in 1905. For many it was a promising place in which to build a home. Growing political maturity, culminating in the formation of the new province, raised many questions about provincial society and the ways in which its needs would be met. Clearly, “more” was a key superlative: more central homesteads, more roads, more railways, more bridges, more school districts and improved education were just a few critical concerns facing the young province in its first year.

The first harvest at Thunder Hill Colony, Manitoba, Fall 1899.  Library and Archives Canada, PA-022231.

There was another concern, one which flew in the face of the politician, the immigration official, the land agent, the farmer and the rancher, and drew hot and diverse opinions far beyond Saskatchewan’s borders. It was termed “the Doukhobor issue”, a fiery ethnic matter that involved over several hundred thousand acres of good prairie land, almost entirely in Saskatchewan, and Russian group settlers, who occupied the land but refused to obey the laws of the Dominion.

Public opinion tended to express the matter simply. Religious group settlers had arrived before the turn of the century, had been given a generous outlay of reserve land from which to select homesteads, and had been accommodated in their every request, including military exemption and communal residence. Six years later, their progress toward becoming Canadians, loyal British subjects and owners of the lands for which they had at last reluctantly signed, was practically non-existent. Refusing to take a stake and interest in Canada, their peculiar ways were more firmly entrenched than before and their leader, Peter Vasilevich Verigin, was the “King Bee” of a growing agricultural theocracy, with no regard for the rights and freedoms of the individual Doukhobor. How much longer could “these favoured children of the Department of the Interior” be allowed to tie up valuable central homestead lands and to perpetuate Little Russia on the prairie, with no interest in the development of local schools, churches or towns and or in the Canadian political process? One prairie editorial writer of the time stated it thus:

The Department of the Interior knows better than anyone else that somebody, they know who, got a good haul out of the treasury of Canada, which was cheerfully paid. A chronic “koff” almost became epidemic in this country then, and there is a peculiar value attached to a “koff” or a little “off” to one’s name today. Such attachments make it easy to get in “on the groundfloor” in the land scramble, since yet it is only Russians who need apply?

As suggested above, the Doukhobor issue centred mainly on the lands upon which the Doukhobors lived. Still owned by the Crown long after the “ordinary” homesteader would have received patent, the Doukhobors still could not decide if they wished to become Canadian landowners. By 1905, land hunger in central homesteading parts and a growing backlash toward the government that brought the Doukhobors west demanded a speedy resolution to this problem. In accordance, in the following year, the new Minister of the Interior, Frank Oliver, who succeeded Clifford Sifton, appointed a commission to investigate Doukhobor lands and to bring the Doukhobor issue to a speedy conclusion.

From the Doukhobor perspective, the issue at hand was considerably different. Initial concessions from the Canadian authorities and the creation of the reserve of land were accepted by them on their arrival, but past experience dictated a wary existence with the state. What would the laws of Canada require of them? Over a dozen Doukhobor sympathizers across the globe had helped to negotiate an initial deal for Verigin’s suffering religious people, a deal about which the Doukhobors knew extremely little. Homesteads of sixty desiatini in the Russian measure seemed generous. The Doukhobors were assured that block settlement was legally sanctioned by a cooperative farming and a hamlet clause in the Dominion Lands Act, but it was hardly what the Doukhobors later described as the desire to “live as one farm.” Instead the Doukhobor reserve provided for the development of four or five colonies throughout the West, generally settlements of under one thousand inhabitants, thus selected in order that the Doukhobor men might obtain employment on incoming railroads more readily and that, as the immigration officials openly stated, the Doukhobors might be “more rapidly Canadianized.”

Scrubbing and clearing, the Doukhobors made substantial material progress, proving their initial reputation as keen agriculturalists. In the beginning there were many problems impeding the orderly taking of lands, but the Doukhobors knew the majority of them were not of their making.

The Doukhobor reserve, a bare outline around almost unknown townships in 1899, was subject to considerable changes in its early years, shunting Doukhobor holdings back and forth. Oddly, land agents could not agree whether the Doukhobors were to possess all lands in each township or only the even-numbered ones, as in ordinary townships available for homesteading. While the North and South Reserves included all lands, Doukhobors on the Prince Albert Reserve were only allowed to settle on the even-numbered lands. Numerous village houses built upon arrival were later found to be on odd-numbered, railway lands and even outside the reserve, through no fault of the group settlers. Throughout the summer of 1901, the villages of Bogdanovka and Tikhomirnoe of the North Colony petitioned to be included in the reserve: “We are very sorry we did not know this before, as no one explained anything about it to us and now it is a year ago since we began to work the ground.”

One of the communal “barracks” houses that the Doukhobors built at Thunder Hill Colony, Manitoba. Summer of 1899.  Library and Archives Canada, C-008896.

Two townships lacked water and were too heavily treed for settlement and another two overlapped with the Cote Indian Reserve. Five townships had been withdrawn for a sinister reason: because of the adverse opinion of ranchers, farmers and squatters toward the Doukhobors. Ranchers disliked the settlers for their fences. Others thought their insular ways hindered the normal social and economic development of districts and were quick to exhibit their prejudice against these “alien and servile Slav serfs of Europe, who are one degree above the monkey for civilization….” By 1900, there were reports of ranchers tearing down Doukhobor fences and driving cattle into their crops.

The early years in Canada proved that there were wide disparities in the Doukhobor understanding of landowning and village life, disparities that were not so apparent on arrival. Initially, communal holding of land, labour and capital was the general rule, imposed largely by difficult economic conditions in the settlements. Soon cracks in the communal model appeared. There were totally communalistic villages, such as Blagodarnoe in the South Colony, where “…everything to the last needle was held in common.” In contrast, the Prince Albert colony Doukhobors showed a great willingness to take lands as ordinary settlers and to reside on homesteads. By September, 1899 ninety-seven Doukhobors had applied for lands, anxious for choice quarters in the district.

Between the two extremes lay the majority of settlers, which tried to interpret Canadian land law in the light of Peter Vasilevich Verigin’s latest letters from exile. He said little about property-holding, but instructed the settlers not to build large buildings or to immerse themselves in husbandry, which suggested they might move again. Yet during the winter of 1899, Herbert Archer, a local immigration agent and J.S. Crerar, Dominion Land Agent at Yorkton, were able to complete lists of homesteaders in the North and South Reserves and to determine their potential land locations. Unfortunately, due to an oversight, the lists were not acted upon by the land agents until several critical issues preventing Doukhobor entry had emerged.

Could one hold land privately, live apart from the community and still be a Doukhobor? The “Independent” sector believed one could. The Communal Doukhobor, with the assistance of Russian ideologues living among them, held the opposite opinion. He saw the independent brethren falling to the temptations of greed and individualism. If property-holding was the temptation, then the Dominion that offered it was the tempter: compliance with the ordinances of the state could only signal spiritual decline.

The Dominion census of 1901 added fuel to the debate, as census-takers extracted information relating to families and their ages. At least three villages, Petrovka, Troudenia [Trudolubivoe] and Pozaraevka, petitioned for exclusion from this fourth census of the Dominion, writing that “…we now know that we have been written up in police-books, which we do not want.”

Coincidentally, a chiding letter from Lev Tolstoy, whose strong support had so assisted their emigration from Russia, rebuked those who had taken homestead entry, insisting that “if a man acknowledges himself to be a son of God, from that acknowledgement flows the love of his neighbour, the repudiation of violence, of oaths, of state service and of property.”

As land officials pursued the subject of homestead entry, it became clear to the Doukhobors that a separate issue, that of communal cultivation as a means of making improvements on their lands, had yet to be resolved. The Doukhobors generally cultivated lands within a six-mile radius of their villages, with hay meadows and grazing lands held in common, much as they had done under the mir landholding system in Russia. Would this cultivation be accepted in place of the cultivation regulations of the Dominion Lands Act, namely, fifteen acres on each quarter-section, usually completed within a three-year period from the date of entry?

The first Doukhobor binders cut the grain and placed it in swaths to be picked up, tied in sheaves and stooked by the women, 1903.  Library and Archives Canada, C-008893.

To the Doukhobors, communal cultivation was a natural part of operating “as one farm,” their request upon arrival in Canada. The Lands Branch did not think so. Numerous meetings and much correspondence finally resolved the issue, at least for the time. Clifford Sifton, the Minister of the Interior who had negotiated the Doukhobors’ original agreement with the Canadian government, officially expressed homestead policy as it pertained to the Doukhobors in a letter of 15 February 1901:

And I have decided that those who will take their homesteads and accept of free land from the Government may live together in one or more villages, and instead of being compelled to cultivate each quarter-section held by each Doukhobor, that the land around the village itself may be cultivated and the work which otherwise would be required on each individual homestead may be done altogether around the village.

Sifton stressed that only Doukhobors applying for lands would be allowed to live in villages, clearly tying the cultivation concession to the larger and more immediate issue of homestead entry.

The divisive nature of Sifton’s concession was clearly upsetting to the Doukhobors. It threatened to end any semblance of a unified Doukhobor existence, as only homestead entrants and their families could remain in the villages. Outside of a small number of entrants gained at the Prince Albert Dominion Land office, the Doukhobors adamantly refused to enter for homesteads, asking instead to buy lands outrightly at ten dollars a quarter-section.

Verigin arrived in Canada on the heels of this debate and on that of the first pilgrimage of “zealots,” numbering approximately 1,800, who had repudiated all property and the enslaving of animals. He did not disappoint the Lands Branch, spending his first two months dealing with the question of landholding. For the first time on record, another key issue, that of taking an oath of allegiance in order to become British subjects, was discussed at length in relation to homesteading. Whether affirmed or sworn, oath-taking was a serious issue to the Doukhobors, who had suffered much persecution in Russia over it.

Upon inquiring of the regulations and questioning the Lands Branch closely, Verigin urged the Doukhobors to sign for lands without delay. Several years lay between entry and the time of patent, when the oath would have to be faced. Perhaps he realized that homestead entry, in itself, did not constitute placing one’s seal of ownership upon the land, especially if the entry was accomplished by a proxy committee. During March and April, 1903, entries were made for over two thousand homesteaders, representing a total of 281,660 acres in northeastern Saskatchewan and 141,140 acres in central areas. Unused reserve lands would be held until the end of the year to accommodate changes and minors. The Doukhobor reserve finally came to an end on December 15, 1904, making over 100,000 acres at Yorkton and nearly 150,000 acres in Prince Albert available.

The new era of material prosperity under Verigin’s leadership that followed him in from 1903 to 1905 was not without its problems. Many of them were tied to the land issue. Verigin’s plan to bring all obedient followers together in the Yorkton-Swan River area was questioned by the Lands Branch, particularly when it appeared that incorrect names had been affixed to proxy entries in preparation for resettlement. Independents accused Verigin of tampering with the homestead entries of forty independent Doukhobors by not informing them of pending inspection of their lands.

A detailed inspection of all Doukhobor lands would help to clarify existing irregularities and also soothe public opinion. In the light of changing demographic situation in Saskatchewan, such a measure was justifiable. Doukhobor holdings, by 1904, could be considered old lands in the heart of settlement, as the recently-constructed Canadian Northern railway line through Canora to Langham brought more settlers and lands speculators in the vicinity of the Doukhobor lands. A barrage of letters to the Lands Branch indicated that many potential homesteaders were eagerly watching Doukhobor lands, prepared to file claims for inspection on lands not being cleared.

Sample household entry from the special investigation of Doukhobor lands, 1905.

Two special investigations of Doukhobor lands came in the summer and fall of 1905, preparing the way for the Commission a year later. The first was made “to see that no member of the community was intimidated or suffering in any way from any hardship from the fact that he may have decided to secede from the community and establish himself along independent lines.” A team of homestead inspectors, including J. Seale, D.C. McNab, J.B. White and J.S. Gibson, spent several weeks touring the Doukhobor villages and recording cultivated acres, eligible homesteads and economic assets. What conclusions did these investigators reach? Doukhobor industry aside, Speers’ report stated:

The individual homesteader has never been impressed with his rights as a settler [or] his independence as an individual. Peter Verigin and the Community have controlled all earnings, all revenues, all incomes from all sources and this ruling has been considered absolute. I would recommend that the individual homesteader be impressed with his own independence and also his individual rights, and that some kind of receipt or the interim homestead receipt be given to him personally.

They also found too many entrants for the size of the community, too many lands reserved for minors and over one hundred irregularities in the age category of homesteaders. Although they could not take issue with the number of acres cultivated per communal entrant, as the community Doukhobors had cultivated more than the required fifteen acres per entrant, the inspectors were quick to point out that the independent sector had cultivated even more. The Independents were “…the very best material out of which to make citizens superior to most of the foreigners finding homes in our land in intelligence, industry, aspirations and work accomplished.” More importantly, the independent Doukhobors were “…rapidly absorbing Canadian sentiments and dropping notions peculiar to them.”

The McDougall Commission, that was to bring the Doukhobor land issue to its final conclusion, set about its work in the summer of 1906 in a brisk and efficient manner, informing Doukhobors that the “government was re-arranging its own lands.” Its first itinerary covered 1,200 miles, beginning in the Good Spirit area, then moving in a northwest direction to Buchanan, eastward to Canora, Verigin and Pelly, on to Swan River and finally, to the far western stretches of the Langham and Prince Albert lands. Its purpose was to record economic assets, inspect cultivation, take census, record homestead entrants and their whereabouts. Ideologically, the Commission was “…to discuss with the Doukhobors present their experience with and attitude towards this country, the Government and things in general.”

The Doukhobors greeted the Commission with traditional, kind hospitality, and gave no indication of ill feeling toward McDougall. In the fall of 1906 Verigin met with the Minster of the Interior to discuss the cancellation of minors’ homesteads and to try to obtain lands for communal Doukhobors from Prince Albert who wished to move to eastern lands. He also needed a letter of recommendation from Oliver for his coming trip to Russia, one purpose of which was to try to secure Russian workers for the building of western Canadian railways. There is no record that the work of the McDougall Commission was even discussed at that time.

The first official report of the McDougall Commission of 25 November 1906 traced the root of all Doukhobor difficulties to their “abject communism” which resulted in “extreme passivity and lethargy.” It blamed Verigin’s one-man leadership and an economic system that kept superstitious and illiterate followers in isolated villages. While McDougall had to admit that communal entrants had cultivated an average of 21.8 acres, he complained that their fields were not symmetrical and that they had cleared the easiest land. McDougall concluded that Doukhobor homesteads, still Crown property, should be subject to stringent homesteading rules regarding cultivation and residence. Obtaining patent for any bona fide homesteads would have to be based on ordinary conditions as he considered “…these people are even as others and subject to the same law.” He made no allowance for Sifton’s letter of concession regarding communal cultivation. Doukhobors not complying fully with existing homestead legislation were to have their homesteads cancelled. They would have an opportunity to re-enter for lands in the regular way. However, any Doukhobor not proceeding towards naturalization or compliance with the definition of the “vicinity of residence” would have to be resettled on new reservation containing seventeen to twenty acres of land per capita.

Broadside concerning the Doukhobor reserve, 1907.  Library and Archives Canada, e000009389.

McDougall returned to the Doukhobor villages in 1907 as the Commissioner of Investigation and Adjuster of Land Claims for Doukhobor lands. His first itinerary that year cancelled a total of 2,503 Doukhobor claims. It left 136 entries intact. His second itinerary, to establish reentries for lands, brought a meagre 384 Doukhobor entries, largely made by those who had opted for independence before McDougall’s work. A communal population of 8,175 had opted for relocation on the new reserves.

How had the majority of the Doukhobors arrived at their final decision regarding the land? Independently, it seemed, for Peter Verigin was abroad in Russia exploring the possibility of the Doukhobors’ return when McDougall first made his rounds. Bulgaria appeared to be another possibility for them or the fruit-growing regions of Canada, which proved their ultimate destination.

Verigin returned to Canada in February 1907. He was strangely silent about the land issue. Perhaps any strong vocal ruling at that time might have been sure evidence of the very “dictatorship” that the Commission was trying to eliminate. It is also possible that he was aware that the resolution of the Doukhobor claims by dismantling the village system was a foregone conclusion.

In the final run, it was the naturalization issue, more than that of cultivation of residence, that met with the most Doukhobor opposition.

It was always the same case that your Commission thus met. They could not, they would not naturalize. In vain we told them that our Government had promised them exemption from military service, that Quakers and others had lived for many years in Canada and had never been called on to give military service. They insisted that if they naturalized and became citizens then they would be compelled to go to war. This they would not do, as some told us [they] “would die first.” When we continued to reason with them they repeatedly told us “we do not want to own the land — all we want is to be permitted to make a living therein.”

And this was the invariable answer of the leaders and representative men of these strange people on the question of land ownership, dependent as it is upon naturalization.

Verigin’s reaction regarding the oath was simply, “whether you will take the oath or not, every man must act according to his conscience, but what must be first in our lives is reliance on the will of God in order to live within His law.” A meeting of village elders in the village of Terpennie in May 1907 proposed that fifty men could take the oath and the lands could be saved, much as homestead entry had been made by a three-man committee. Verigin addressed them:

Brothers and sisters, for myself I speak thus: if we take the oath even by having some elderly ones take it, even by this we would separate ourselves from Christ’s teaching of two thousand years. But you must see for yourselves.

The Doukhobor lands were opened immediately to settlers, facing such strong demand that only one township a day was released in each Dominion land office. The Lands Branch reported that it was delighted with the class of men receiving lands, who, even in entry, exhibited such will power, endurance and obedience to all rules. The land office staffs provided another perspective, as windows were smashed by those in line for lands and firehouses were turned on crowds. In many cases, land speculators catalyzed much of the action. Royal North-West Mounted Police inspector. Christen Junget, confessed that holding the mobs back was a nightmarish task:

I have never experienced a meaner job that this. Only the small percentage of those struggling for positions who get in are satisfied and pleased, the rest feel hurt and do not hesitate to trump up charges of any description against the police. This makes the work extremely difficult and discouraging.

A new reserve consisting of 766 quarter-sections in total was established for the communal Doukhobors. No claims for improvements were made relating to the lands lost in 1907, an estimated $682,000 worth of cultivation, clearing and crops. Yet, new entrants were required to pay the Lands Branch for improvements that had been made on the property they acquired.

Homesteaders seeking Doukhobor lands, 1907.  Library and Archives Canada, C-025694.

The Doukhobor reserve created in 1907 lasted only a decade. As the last of the communal Doukhobors left for British Columbia, the Doukhobor homesteading era closed.

Much has happened since the Doukhobors had turned their first furrow in 1899. Eastern and western land-use systems clashed. In an empty prairie, there was room for compromise. As the West filled, mir and homestead systems found themselves in full conflict, especially when public opinion was so adversely fixed on the village system that was the foundation of Verigin’s rule.

The Doukhobor homestead crisis said much about the settlers Canada had accepted in 1898-1899. They were a complex people and subject to differences among themselves. The land question mirrored the emergency of three different Doukhobor ideals regarding landowning: the Community believed the land could be for its use but not for personal ownership; the Independents saw no conflict between being private farmers, Canadians and Doukhobors; and the Freedomites or Zealots, a small but ever-present group by 1907, would not consent to use the land, let alone to own it.

The land issue also said a great deal about the workings and misworkings of the Department of the Interior as well. In the context of the broader demographic scene, the McDougall Commission’s recommendations and actions were probably inevitable. The government could simply not afford to offer concessions to one group of settlers while others waited eagerly for lands.

In the broader light, it must be admitted that homestead regulations were enforced to the letter for all by 1906. Proxy entry was eliminated. 15,000 entries that had been granted prior to June 1902 and for which patent had not been obtained, were inspected and cleared. Seven inspectors were employed in Saskatchewan to investigate irregularities regarding railway lands and to pressure railway companies to complete their selections. Maps showing available quarters were revised and posted daily.

Numerous mistakes and miscommunications by Lands Branch officials clearly added fuel to the land issue. Local land agent, Herbert Archer, of Swan River was horrified by the mistakes made by the Department of the Interior in connection with the Doukhobor lands, particularly the even-odd controversy over the early reserve, stating: “…if such a very serious blunder has been made by the Interior, the effect will be very bad.”

Many questions remain unanswered. Why was the list of Doukhobor homesteaders compiled in 1900 never filed? Why were the Doukhobors’ special farming conditions never recognized on paper? Their proxy homestead entries were made in the standard way, using ordinary forms, even though local land agents inquired whether the Lands Branch would issue special forms to reflect the Doukhobors’ special farming conditions. Later, Lands Branch officials wrote: “… they made entry on the ordinary forms, and these forms were accepted, and their entries stood in the book against lands subject to the ordinary homestead conditions.”

Doukhobor land rush in Yorkton, 1907. Library and Archives Canada, PA-022232.

The prairie “Doukhobor issue” had been resolved to the satisfaction of the Canadian public. A measure had been meted – not of quarter-sections and acres cleared – but of the extent to which Canada would or could allow its landholding system and social value to be challenged by “ethnic peculiarities.” From the Doukhobor perspective, the land issue confirmed their attitude toward the state: as brief sojourners in a temporal land, they would continue to seek the kingdom of God within and prepare for whatever adversities might lie ahead.

For More Information

For a detailed, in-depth scholarly analysis of the Doukhobor homestead crisis, see the Master of Arts thesis, The Doukhobor Homestead Crisis, 1898-1907completed by Kathlyn (Katya) Szalasznyj at the University of Saskatchewan in 1977. It provides an overview of events using the Land Records of the Department of the Interior in Ottawa and other key sources, tracing pre-immigration negotations, the granting of a Doukhobor reserve of lands for entry and the complexities of communal settlement at a time of increasing prairie land hunger and growing adverse public opinion. From the effects of the arrival of Peter V. Verigin, to the work (and blunders!) of individual land agents and including such factors as the emergence of the Sons of Freedom, this thesis is an in-depth look at Doukhobor prairie life prior to the establishment of the McDougall Commission of 1907, which resulted in the cancellation of homestead entries and Doukhobor movement to British Columbia.

Report of the General Meeting of the Doukhobor Community held at Verigin, Sask, January 25, 1910

Manitoba Free Press

During the first decades of the twentieth century, the Christian Community of Universal Brotherhood was governed by general meetings that were held early each year to receive the annual report and financial statement prepared by the representative committee and to vote on various matters of policy and practice brought before them. These gatherings were typically attended by two delegates – one woman and one man – from each village, the administrators in charge of community affairs and the leader Peter “Lordly” Verigin. The following is a rare extant report of the general meeting of the Doukhobor Community held at Verigin, Saskatchewan, on January 25, 1910, as published in the Manitoba Morning Free Press, March 1, 1910. The minutes provide remarkable insight into the administrative matters of the day, including the universal meaning of Christ’s teaching, the immigration to British Columbia, the election of community managers, grain for people, livestock, seed and milling, capital debts and expenditures, and more. In addition, the general account leaves no doubt of the extent of the material achievements of the Community under Verigin’s leadership at this time.

There were present one-man delegate and one-woman from each village, also some honorary members. The number of people attending was about fifty men and fifty women.

The meeting was opened by each person reading a Psalm, and all joining in the singing of the hymn, “Glory to God”, and by common expressions of hearty gratitude to God for the success of present life.

After this there was long and serious conversation in regard to the universal meaning of Christ’s teaching. It was clearly explained from the conversations that Christ in His teachings gave us to understand that God is a universal God. So there were some examples taken from the life of people before Christ’s time. People at that time understood Divinity as a destructive force, taking for instance the worshipping of thunder, winds, fire and other elements. People of such belief often themselves committed actions of destructions. Wars and ether illegal actions were allowed.

Christ clearly explained to us that the most superior force, by which the universe is ruled, is the force of good and people wishing to worship this good force must first themselves be good. By doing so one would become nearer and adapt himself to the good force of the universe what is called “God”. The winds and thunder are temporary occurrences, but the world is guarded by this force of Good.

After that, various questions of economy were presented to the meeting for consideration.

  1. It was stated to the meeting that this year was closed by the payment of all debts in full, the funds for which came from outside works and the sale of grain.
  2. The delegates from each village presented a report of the quantity of wheat, oats, barley, flax, peas, etc remaining.
  3. It was decided by all present that from this date until the arrival of new crops, six bushels of wheat be retained for the personal use of each person, and that in the spring one bushel of wheat and one bushel of barley be sown for each individual: the remainder of the land to be sown in oats. Flax and peas can be sown in accordance with the desire of each village. The majority of the members of the meeting expressed their wish that each village should keep on sowing flax and peas, and, to keep feed for the stock, one hundred bushels of oats for each team of horses and fifty bushels of barley for each yoke of oxen.
  4. It was decided that by the 15th of February each village must have the grain for people, seed grain, grain for horses and oxen separated. The seed grain must be carefully cleaned and stored in good granaries, and all balance of grain in each village, after 15th February will be hauled to railroad points for sale. As per the reports the community has at present, the grain for sale will amount to seventy five thousand dollars. Shipments of grain will be made as heretofore, through the community offices. All moneys received from the sale of grain will be deposited with the Home Bank of Canada at Winnipeg and withdrawn when required.
  5. All merchandise will be purchased, as before, through the community office at Verigin and those villages, which have credit accounts, will receive goods to the value of same. All villages having a credit account, are willing that goods be bought for villages which have none. And in view of this it was decided at this meeting that no person should purchase goods individually.
  6. An inventory of all property belonging to the community beyond the village outfits was made and is attached to general accounts.
  7. The community has in all villages about four hundred teams of working horses, valued at $350.00 per team, which amounts to one hundred and forty thousand dollars, five hundred yokes of oxen, valued at $100.00 per yoke, amounts to fifty thousand dollars, five hundred milk cows, valued at $35.00 each, amounts to seventeen thousand and five thousand dollars. Besides that there are full outfits for horses and oxen as: harness, farm implements, wagons, sleighs, etc. All affairs of the community consisting of 42 villages are in good shape.
  8. The community accounts for 1909 were presented by V. A. Potapoff, S. Reibin and M. W. Cazakoff. Accounts were found correct in every respect and approved by all present. The copy is attached here within.
  9. Vasil Potapoff and Simeon Reibin requested the meeting to allow them to resign their positions. Their resignations were very reluctantly accepted, and the meeting tendered them a hearty vote of thanks in acknowledgement of their services in the interest of the community in the past.
  10. It was decided to proceed with the election of managers of the community affairs. The following were elected for 1914 for purchasing goods and implements and distributing same to villages: Nicholas Fofonoff, of village Vernoe, Vasil Hleboff of village Lubovnoe, John Podovinikoff, who was in office at Verigin before, Alex Reibin, of village Vosnisennie, Pard Potakoff, of village Bogomdannoe, M. W. Cazakoff was re-elected as a manager of office and ministerial affairs.
  11. As the community had good heavy crops and fall success in life during the year 1909, it was decided by all those present to send no men on outside work this coming summer, but instead to increase cultivation acreage at home.
  12. It was decided by this meeting to deliver to Verigin flour mill all wheat in excess of amount reserved for the purpose of grinding and selling the flour. Prices on wheat were set as follows: For highest-grade 85¢ per bushel, and for second grade 80¢ per bushel. The villages situated at the north colony will receive for long hauling 10¢ per bushel extra, and villages Tambovkia, Trudohubivoe, Vossianie, and Petrovo and Voskresinie 5¢ per bushel extra.
  13. The question was raised before the meeting regard to the immigration to British Columbia. It was definitely shown that in Saskatchewan where the Doukhobors live at present, in consequences of wide prairies lying a considerable distance from the sea, the climate in winter is very dry and cold, the temperature is often over 30 degrees Reaumur, and therefore some sickness prevails, such as bad coughs and rheumatism. Immigration to British Columbia was decided as most necessary.

A particular report of the British Columbia climate was submitted by Peter V. Verigin and by Nicholas Ziboroff, delegates from British Columbia. The first party of community Doukhobors immigrated to British Columbia for the purpose of starting works, and has been living there for two years. They have found the climate exceedingly mild in winter: temperatures not being over 15 degrees Reaumur. This occurs about ten times during all the winter, but generally, the temperature is 3, 5 and 7 degrees below zero Reaumur, and sometimes 2, 3 and 7 degrees above zero Reaumur.

In consequence of the mountains, the water for drinking is very pure, and the air also very clear and healthy. The reporter, Peter Verigin, is under the impression that the air and waters are similar to those in Switzerland in nature, and even much more healthy. Therefore, with the view to become healthier, immigration to British Columbia has been decided on possibly sooner than intended.

In British Columbia it is possible to grow fruits of nearly all kinds: apples, pears, plums, cherries, etc. Small. fruits and vegetables are grown wonderfully good. The community has already bought about ten thousand acres of fruit lands. There is splendid timber on it for building purposes.

Toward the close of the meeting there were several conversations in regard to the necessity of the moral enlightenment of the Doukhobors as a Christian Community of the Universal Brotherhood. As already stated, God is universally good, and consequently his followers also must be good, which is their superior degree of nobleness and enlightenment. Such followers of spiritual necessity must not be blood-thirsty, and therefore their food must not be slaughterous. A person whose object is to be pure in spirit, must also be anxious about cleanliness of his body, as for instance, all houses as far as possible clean, especially in living rooms the air always must be as like as possible to the outside air, which is given by the Lord for the nourishing of all people and animal. We deem necessary the water in every village must be kept in clean wells. It is also necessary that every well must be laid round inside with stones or brick, and good pumps installed.

The meeting continued four days. It was open every day for eight hours.

With sincere wishes for every success from the Lord in their future life and with greeting to all brothers and sisters in every village, the meeting was brought to a close.

S. Reibin,
Ex-Secretary to Doukhobor Community.
Free Press, Winnipeg, March 1, 1910.

Inventory of Property Under Direct Control of Community Committee (Exclusive of Village Outfits). 
The building at Verigin station and 3 acres of land

$6,000.00

The brickyard at Verigin and 10 acres of land

$2,000.00

Flour and oatmeal mill at Verigin and 10 acres of land

$35,000.00

The property at farm, including one section of land

$9,600.00

The property at Canora, including one farm of land

$8,500.00

The brickyard at Yorkton (brick is not included)

$9,600.00

The land and cement enterprise at Yorkton

$7,500.00

The land and buildings at Benito, Man.

$3,000.00

The land at Swan River, Man.

$200.00

Movable property at farm

$10,000.00

The land, 7,410 acres, paid in full at $8.50 per acre

$62,985.00

Twelve outfits, engines and threshing machines

$10,000.00

Total

$163,873.00

Above property paid in full.
Besides that there are 13,520 acres of land purchased (British Columbia land included) which amount to $347,215.00.  Deposit paid up.

$114,323.00

Grand Total

$278,108.00

Statement of Future Debts
Land in Saskatchewan, payments till the year 1917

$22,891.90

Machinery etc. in Winnipeg

$3,907.00

Land in British Columbia, payments till the year 1914

$210,090.00

Total

$236,798.90

An Account of Income and Expenditure of the Doukhobor Community in Canada for 1909
Income –
Loan from the Home Bank of Canada. Winnipeg (British Columbia excepted)

$12,384.01

To cash received from J. Podovinnikoff of Yorkton

$500.00

To cash received from village Bogdanovka for horses

$300.00

To cash received from P. Labintzeff for grinding flour

$20.64

To cash received for old lumber mill

$225.04

To cash received from some villages for sale of cattle

$2,596.44

To cash received from V. Golooboff, the engineer

$225.00

To cash received from Jacob Iwashin for land

$71.00

To cash received from K. Novokshonoff for land

$71.00

To cash for sold hospital at Yorkton (last payment)

$266.33

To cash received from V. Pepin

$300.00

Total

$18,088.59

Expenditures –
By payment of old loan and interest to B.B.N.A.

$20,935.64

By payment of old debts for brickyard at Yorkton

$17,774.36

By payment of an old debt for elevator at Verigin

$678.55

By payment of M.W. Cazakoff account

$2,727.93

By payment of an old debt to Quakers in England

$1,610.00

By payment on land for 1909

$8463.64

By payment of taxes on land for 1909

$683.15

By payment of Kamenka village debts to stores

$1,600.00

By payment of accounts with Prince Albert colony

$710.20

By payment to carpenters at Wurtz’s farm

$140.00

By payment of an old debt for farm of WUrtz

$2,520.96

By payment for 500 bushels of seed oats

$150.00

To purchase of live bee hives for Otradnoe village

$60.00

By payment of transportation and travelling expenses, 1908

$1,685.96

By payment of transportation and travelling expenses, 1909

$79.60

To purchase of railway ticket for T. Litoshenko to Russia

$134.96

By payment of an old debt for brickyard at North Colony

$958.25

By payment of an old debt for lumber mills

$70.30

By payment of engineer’s account for certificates

$172.91

By payment of purchase for mills (stones, etc.)

$175.000

To purchase of threshing outfits, deposit paid

$800.00

By payment of Simeonovo village account for lime

$400.00

By payment to barristers

$94.80

BY payment of balance for mill at Verigin

$4,857.35

By payments to John Nimanikin

$250.00

To office expense, stationery, telegrams, postage stamps, etc.

$64.17

By payment of loan to H.B. of C., Winnipeg (B.C. excepted)

$12,584.04

To interest on above amount for nearly 8 months

$698.85

By payment to V. Pepin for his expenses

$300.00

Total

$86,880.52

Total expenditures

$86,880.52

Total Income

$18,088.59

Adverse balance

$68,791.93

Above adverse balance $68,791.93 was paid from other sources, as follows:
1. Villages deposited moneys of grain sale

$24,589.55

2. By loan of British Columbia accounts, 1908

$12,365.85

3. By moneys from store remains as a profit

$31,836.53

Total

$68,791.93

An account of Community stores at Verigin and Benito of the inventory and net profit from commercial operation, showing how income is distributed:
To cash paid for Community debts, as shown above

$31,836.53

To cash handed over to M.W. Cazakoff

$1,132.29

To cash paid for the debts of Canora store

$2,714.00

To goods on hand at Benito store

$1,997.71

To goods on hand at Verigin store

$1,870.00

To cash paid for buildings at Verigin

$1,810.00

To value of telephone line 57 miles long

$570.00

To cash paid for the buildings at Canora

$6,434.33

To accounts unpaid by villages

$12,099.54

Total

$60,464.40

Besides accounts of Doukhobor Community as shown above, there were incomes and expenditures of villages which amount to over $200,000 for 1909. All the villages except a few have paid their debts in full. Many villages have deposited large sums of money to be kept in their credit.

Notes

The Community was formally a democracy in which the general meeting was the supreme governance authority. However, in practice, while Peter “Lordly” Verigin’s formal powers were small, his real influence was immense. This was due, not only to his position as hereditary leader, but to his powerful personality, superior education and intellectual prowess. Resolutions at the annual general meetings never went contrary to his advice, and during the twelve months that elapsed between meetings, he and his advisors acted as an executive with sweeping powers to make almost any decision on behalf of the Community.

The general account reveals the dual financial structure within the Community, consisting of the central office and treasury and the villages. All village income, sales and other general transactions were dispatched through the central office. At the same time, assets were held by the Community as a whole as well as by the villages. The general account, however, only identifies property under the direct control of the Community and not that held by the villages, giving an incomplete idea of the overall value of Community property.

In 1909, the income of the Community as a business concern amounted to $18,088.59 and its expenditures amounted to $86,880.52, not counting the incomes and expenditures of villages which amounted to over $200,000.00. This balance reflects the daring deficit financing which Verigin was undertaking, whereby, a planned excess of expenditure over income created a shortfall of Community revenue which was met by borrowing. The decision to create a deficit was made to build up the infrastructure of the Community as a self-contained entity through great investments in machinery and industrial plants.

The general account gives an incomplete idea of the overall productiveness of the Community, which, numbering over eight thousand people, was largely self-supporting. Many tens of thousands of tonnes of wheat were grown and ground into flour, vegetables grown for food, flax and wool produced, spun and woven for clothing, dairy products produced from the communal herd of cattle, and many buildings, equipment and household goods manufactured, all for internal use by the Community. None of this directly involved income or expenditure, assets or liabilities, and therefore, was not included in the general account.

Finally, in reviewing the general account it must be recalled that only ten years prior, the Doukhobors had arrived in Canada with no capital but strong hearts and willing hands, none having even the faintest knowledge of the English language, Canadian law, or modern methods of business and agriculture. The rapid material achievements of the Community over such a brief period, owing in no small part to the leadership of Peter “Lordly” Verigin is nothing short of a sociological and economic wonder.

For more information on the general meetings and accounts of the Christian Community of Universal Brotherhood, see the 1904 Report1906 Report and the 1912 Report of the General Meeting of the Doukhobor Community.