The Museum also has a large collection of books on the history of famous shipping companies, such as Cunard, P&O and the White Star line.

Shipping Company records held by the National Maritime Museum

  • Adam & Co Ltd Business records 1825–1914
  • Albyn Line Ltd Business records from 1966 Voyage records from 1953–66
  • Asiatic Steam Navigation Co Ltd Directors' minute books 1878-1968 Annual accounts 1878–1965
  • Bates, Edward & Sons Business records 1869–1916 Cargo records 1870–96 Letter, primarily personal, 1878–1902
  • British India Steam Navigation Co Business records from 1856 Staff records 1868–1957 (some restrictions on access)
  • Cairn Line of Steamships Ltd Business records from 1891 Voyage records 1908–51
  • Canadian Pacific Railway Co Small number of log books 1901–13
  • Chine Shipping Co Ltd Business records from 1915 Ship records 1958–68
  • Coast Lines Ltd Business records from 1913 (earlier for subsidiaries) Various voyage records, 1868–1963 excluding 1939–45
  • Denny, William and Brothers Ltd Technical records. Photograph albums and press cuttings 1881–1957
  • Devitt & Moore Business records 1903–20 Staff records 1864–1917 Vessel records/voyage books 1859–1921
  • Eastern & Australian Steamship Co Business records 1873–1953
  • Furness Withy & Co Ltd Business records from 1911 (including subsidiaries)
  • General Steam Navigation Co Ltd Business records 1825–1965 Business records for three companies acquired by GSN: Moss Hutchinson Ltd, New Medway Steam Packet Co, and Grand Union (Shipping) Ltd
  • Henley, Michael & Son Business records 1771–1830 Ships records 1784–1830
  • Houlder Brothers & Co Ltd Movement books 1920–30 Charter parties 1949–50 Voyage estimates 1965–67
  • Kellock, CW & Co Business records 1850–1949
  • Manchester Ship Canal Co Business records 1879–1956
  • New Zealand Shipping Co Ltd Business records 1874–1964 Outward passenger books 1894–1955 (unindexed, names only) Voyage records 1883–1971
  • Nourse, James Ltd Business records 1903–63
  • Orient Steam Navigation Co Business records 1945–65
  • Peninsular & Oriental Steam Navigation Co Business records 1840–1959 Staff records (restricted access) 1845–1957
  • Royal Mail Steam Packet Company Business records 1839–1933
  • Shaw Saville & Albion Company Ltd Business records primarily 1947–65 Voyage records 1900–72
  • South Western Steam Packet Co Business records 1843–83
  • Strick, Frank C & Co Ltd Business records 1896–1974 Some voyage records 1969–71
  • Sutherland, BJ & Company Ltd Business records 1909–54
  • Toyne Carter & Co Business records 1921–75 Voyage records 1899–1972
  • Van Ommern Ltd Business records 1940–68

If the company you are looking for is not listed here, please consult: 

The shipbuilding industry : a guide to historical records by L.A. Ritchie

Next steps

Other guides in the series which may be useful for researching shipping companies are:

For general research help see:

Although care has been taken in preparing the information contained in this document, anyone using it shall be deemed to indemnify the National Maritime Museum from any and all injury or damage arising from such use.