One of the reasons I was keen to renew my Ancestry membership was because the organisation has just released a new collection of Masters and Mates certificates for Great Britain from 1850-1927, as sourced from The National Maritime Museum at Greenwich.
Some years ago I went to London to seek out the Register entries for my CUMPSTON relatives who were all Master Mariners. I was able to abstract all their register of sailing entries, including ships and dates. but never got to see their actual certificates – so what joy this evening to be able to download them. I found 2 certificates for my 2 x great grandfather Watson CUMPSTON – the first certificate showed him aged 24 born in 1833 in Hull, with a certificate of competency as ‘Only Mate’ dated 30th October 1857. The second dated 1861 was as a ‘Master’.
The certificates are beautiful and well worth framing – but I now have so many – so maybe my Ancestry subscription has been worthwhile in its first day! These are the others I found there:
Charles Francis CUMPSTON
and his father Charles West CUMPSTON (Watson’s brother), http://www.cumpston.org.uk/#/charles-west-cumpston-hull/4534104920
Joseph Watson CUMPSTON
and Thomas Cumpston dated 1851 – a beautiful Mate’s certificate showing that he had worked for 25 years in the British Merchant Service in the ‘Foreign Trade’.
The collection is available at http://search.ancestry.co.uk/search/db.aspx?dbid=2271.
There were also a couple of surprising ones for James COMPSTON born in 1841 in Kendal issued in Liverpool in 1867 when he was 26 years old. He is recorded as ‘Second Mate’. http://www.cumpston.org.uk/#/edward-compston-2-kendal/4538862969
Do let me know if you are related to any of these people.