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Vessel Archive 1840-1860

Company seal
PS Gempaddle steamer
Registered No:25119
Builders:J.White, Cowes, Isle of Wight
Built:1840
Acquired:1861
Tonnage:87 tonnes gross
Dimensions:107'6" x 14'9"
Machinery:40hp - paddle
Withdrawn:1883 (scrapped 1889)

Built for Isle of Wight Steam Packet Company and launched 5 September 1839. She was passed to the present company on its formation in 1861. In 1867 she was based in Cowes for tendering American liners in Cowes Roads, at a time when many Americans were coming ashore in Cowes. From 1869 she carried freight traffic and was finally withdrawn after 43 years service.

Red Funnel Paddle Steamer Ruby
PS Rubypaddle steamer
Registered No:13862
Builders:Day, Summers & Co. Northam
Built:1841
Acquired:1861
Tonnage:103 tonnes gross
Dimensions:114'9" x 16'4"
Machinery:40hp - paddle
Withdrawn:1872 (scrapped 1872)

The first Isle of Wight steamer to be built of iron and ordered by the new competing concern, South Western & Isle of Wight Steam Navigation Co. She was launched 14 October 1840 at Northam as 'The Pride of the Waters' and after bankruptcy was acquired by the Isle of Wight Royal Mail Co. and renamed Ruby. She was one of the earliest excursion steamers, inaugurating a Southampton-Swanage voyage in 1849. From 1861 she was used for cargo duties but in 1870 she was hired by a priest to meet refugees crossing from France during the French/German War.

Company seal
PS Pearlpaddle steamer
Registered No:13863
Builders:Day, Summers & Co. Northam
Built:1844
Acquired:1861
Tonnage:64 tonnes gross
Dimensions:89'8" x 13'3"
Machinery:32hp - paddle
Withdrawn:1867 (scrapped 1875)

Built of iron for Isle of Wight Royal Mail Co. and launched 2 May 1844. She was sold for £150 at public auction in 1867 after 23 years service.

Company seal
PS Queen (I)paddle steamer
Registered No:13865
Builders:Day, Summers & Co. Northam
Built:1848
Acquired:1861
Tonnage:93 tonnes gross
Dimensions:117'1" x 14'0"
Machinery:40hp - paddle
Withdrawn:1876 (scrapped 1876)

Built of iron for Isle of Wight Royal Mail Co. She hit the headlines in September 1868 for sinking the yacht Ulalie and again on 15 April 1874 when she transhipped the body of Dr David Livingstone from the P&O ship Malwa to the Royal Pier on route to Westminster Abbey for his funeral on 18 April 1874.

Company seal
PS Medina (I)paddle steamer
Registered No:13860
Builders:J. White, Cowes, Isle of Wight
Built:1852
Acquired:1861
Tonnage:104 tonnes gross
Dimensions:120'8" x 14'9"
Machinery:50hp - paddle
Withdrawn:1882 (scrapped 1883)

Acquired unused by Isle of Wight Royal Mail Co. as PS 'Times', she had lain engineless on the River Medina having been commisioned by a competing interest that had gone bankrupt. Engined by Summers, Day and Baldock, she was renamed 'Medina' and proved a fast and popular excursion boat. Although the first Medina of the present company, her predecessor of the same name 1822-1848 opened up many of the sea routes to steam, holding title of the first steamer into Guernsey in 1823, the first steamer to circumnavigate the Isle of Wight and known for occasional trips to Le Havre. Withdrawn after 21 years service.

Company seal
PS Emeraldpaddle steamer
Registered No:22532
Builders:Day, Summers & Co. Northam
Built:1857
Acquired:1861
Tonnage:69 tonnes gross
Dimensions:105'0" x 14'1"
Machinery:32hp oscillating - paddle
Withdrawn:1871

Built of iron for Isle of Wight Steam Packet Co. with oscillating engines. She was often based in Yarmouth running into Cowes to feed the main packet service. She retired after 10 years with the Company and was sold to the Spanish.

Company seal
PS Saphirepaddle steamer
Registered No:29130
Builders:CA Day, Northam, Southampton
Built:1860
Acquired:1861
Tonnage:82 tonnes gross
Dimensions:120'3" x 14'5"
Machinery:40hp oscillating - paddle
Withdrawn:1873

Built of iron with two oscillating engines and Morgan's patented feathering paddles for the Isle of Wight Steam Packet Co. On her trials she ran from Southampton to Portsmouth via Cowes in 1 hr 50 minutes. In April 1864 she was used by the Italian statesman Giuseppe Garibaldi who sailed to Cowes to visit Lord Alfred Tennyson at Farringford. Saphire was withdrawn after 12 years service and sold to the Spanish.

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