New template for Voyages

+7 votes

Following the approval of the Australia voyage categories standard there are several members of the Australia Project fixing the existing categories to conform to that standard.  

To make that process easier I would like to propose that a template be created so that we don’t have to keep reinserting the same text on each page and to enable the same look at the top of each voyage page.

See and  as examples of a possible template.


The voyage of the immigrant ship Berrima 
Departed London, Tuesday 23 March 1920 
Arrived Cape Town, 14 April 1920 
Departed Cape Town, 17 April 1920 
Arrived Outer Harbour, Port Adelaide, Wednesday 5 May 1920


The voyage of the ship Belgic 
Departed Liverpool, 27 April 1912 
Arrived Fremantle, Western Australia, 11 June 1912 
Arrived Outer Harbour, Adelaide, 17 June 1912 
Arrived Victoria Dock, Melbourne, 21 June 1912

This could be put into a box like the project boxes are set up.  Then all we would need to do is fill in the ship’s name and ports and dates of departures and arrivals.  

This would make it easy for people to identify a voyage from its various departure and arrival ports.

in Policy and Style by Deborah Talbot G2G6 Mach 4 (44.4k points)
I like it, Deborah, but I edited the example. I added "landing level category" so its use is clear, and removed the vertical line breaks, substituting a sources heading (using three sets of ===)

I have been editing the ships as they come through editbot and some have far too much text in them. This template would help achieve the proper amount of information on a category page. You don't really need it to be in a box, just create a free-space page with directions. If you like, you can create a small table for the information. Then post the link to the free-space within the project so that anyone can find it and use it.

Great idea Deborah, I've added that format to my own "cheat sheet" to use but if we could everyone to use that format would be great. If only we had a CIB for voyages, any chance that's likely?? smiley

Deborah, you could add it to the help pages we have.

This is exactly the type of usage the CategoryInfoBox is made to handle. I can work on a mockup today and post back here for review.

As a side note, the content on the example category (Belgic, Arrived 21 Jun 1912) is way too long for a category and should be moved to a free-space page.

3 Answers

+6 votes
Good idea Deborah. In addition to making it easier to fill in key details, it's easy to read. It has another advantage of making it clearer if passengers embark and disembark at more than one port in a ship's voyage.
by Steve Thomas G2G5 (5.6k points)
+5 votes

Thanks for your positive responses and comments.  I’ve created the Freespace page. [ Voyage Category Pages].

If you think it needs further clarification or any other information please update that page.

by Deborah Talbot G2G6 Mach 4 (44.4k points)
edited by Deborah Talbot
Thank you, Deborah. That looks great!
Thanks Deborah this Free sace page alleviates some of the misgivings i initially had. danny in canberra
+2 votes

I am working on a CategoryInfoBox for Migrant Ships. See an example here: Berrima, Arrived 5 May 1920.

Question - What is the purpose of multiple Departures and Arrivals? I thought that these categories were intended to be for a specific voyage (single destination).

by Steve Harris G2G6 Pilot (324k points)
That looks great!
Steve that's great!

Multiple arrivals sometimes where a ship a ship called at Adelaide and then Sydney for example, both are in Australia, if we know that, we were using the arrival date at the final port with the other arrival dates mentioned as in the Belgic example. Previously, if the sailing date was used, the voyage would still have the same arrival ports in Australia. Most of the early ships, especially the convict ships, would only have one arrival port, but some of the later immigrant ships may stop at several Australian ports. For that scenario, perhaps up to 3 arrival parameters?
Thanks everyone - that looks really excellent and will make it so much easier to get the necessary information on the landing categories. As an aside - there is also the problem that there can be multiple ports where people embarked in the UK.
My grandmother and her children arrived on an immigrant ship that departed from London to Australia via Colombo.  They boarded at Colombo as that was where grandfather was Aide de Camp to the Governor and had lived for several years.  I’m trying to identify which Port they arrived at and got off the boat. The Welcome Walls state Fremantle, but they lived in Melbourne and I know that ship also stopped in Adelaide.  By having all ports listed it helps understand the journey they undertook.  

Also as my grandfather was also a ship’s captain I find it interesting to understand all his stops on voyages.

OK, you will all have to excuse me but I am extremely confused now... According to the proposals, the focus of the categories (evident in the naming of the categories) was to hone in on the arrival port only in order to group all profiles arriving on a specific ship on a specific date.

If there is a need to focus on the departure port, even in text on a category page, this was clearly lost in the proposal and can (and will) result in some very strange issues (and incorrect categories) to appear in the ships structure.

What appears to be happening is an effort to use these ship categories as a mix into the migration topics, which was not clear any of the proposals I have seen.

My grandmother and her children arrived on an immigrant ship that departed from London to Australia via Colombo. They boarded at Colombo...

As an example, let's assume that the boat (SS Deborah) left London, England and arrived in Colombo (guessing that is Sri Lanka). Some people got on, some people got off, then the boat continued on to a port in Australia (we'll say it was Queensland) where we will assume all of the passengers got off the boat.

This is two very distinct Ship categories (with made up dates):

  • Deborah, Arrived 5 May 1850
    (this is for the people who went from London, England and got off in Colombo, Sri Lanka)
  • Deborah, Arrived 26 May 1850
    (this is for anyone from London, England or Colombo, Sri Lanka who got off in Queensland, Australia)

Continuing with this example, there are two very clear category structures that should be used on specific qualifying profiles. This would be the the ship and date they arrived on (shipping structure); and the full migration path (migration structure). This means that a profile would fit one of the following scenarios:

  1. London to Colombo
    • Migrants from London to Colombo
    • Deborah, Arrived 5 May 1850
  2. London to Queensland
    • Migrants from London to Queensland
    • Deborah, Arrived 26 May 1850
  3. Colombo to Queensland
    • Migrants from Colombo to Queensland
    • Deborah, Arrived 26 May 1850

Under the shipping structure, the individual ship would list all of it's arrival ports (which is a higher level category than the ones being addressed herein).

Steve, with your example, there would be two voyage categories, but the only one we would be doing as far as Australia is concerned is the one that arrived in Australia.

Many of the voyage categories we have now have no departure dates, only that they departed from England, because of the records which only have arrival dates , which is why we wanted to go with the "Arrived" date.

As for the few voyages that arrived in say Adelaide then went on to Sydney (both ports in Australia), passengers disembarking at both places, all coming from say London, should that voyage  have one category or two? In the proposal we said the arrived date would be the date for the final port of call in Australia (using one category, as both ports in Australia).

 The CIB you created on the Berrima example would be great, covers all required parameters with space page and website.

As for the few voyages that arrived in say Adelaide then went on to Sydney (both ports in Australia), passengers disembarking at both places, all coming from say London, should that voyage  have one category or two?

This should absolutely be two categories. Listing only the final port of call will lead to even more confusion I would think.

Using another similar example:
London, England > Colombo, Sri Lanka > Queensland, Australia.

In your method of final port of call, a person who boarded in London and arrived in Colombo would be placed into a category of a ship arriving in Australia?

Definitely someone who disembarked in a country prior to Australia wouldn’t be included under our categories. Having separate arrival categories within Australia would be very user unfriendly. Is that what you are suggesting? Would they be parallel landing categories?

Hi Steve Harris,

I agree with your comment that starts "OK, you will all have to excuse me but I am extremely confused now". Putting aside any confusion, I can see benefit in grouping together all passengers that arrived together at a specific port on a particular date. 

Those records help discover family connections that might be otherwise hard to find. It was exactly the method I've used to find family connections. For Example: I created a Free Space Page  for passengers on the 'Prince George' ( and then found that Anna Zilm had a brother on the 'Bengalee' (

Steve (Harris), 

  • The majority of our categories are arrivals to one port, this was how they were originally created, which is the case with the Berrima, ignoring Cape Town, which is not in Australia. Many of these, yet to be renamed, have little or no content, but arrival dates will be found from the Australian shipping sites. Is the CIB you created ready to use? I would love to be able to use it to add content to these categories as they are renamed, (and get them off the category error list!)
  • Some voyages, like the  Belgic, (and yes it does need a FSP, we've created a maintenance category to identify those that need one), called at more than one Australian port for passengers to disembark. I checked the 5 attached profiles, 4 of them are from the same family, and there is no indication in any of their biographies which port they disembarked. The other one disembarked in Fremantle, so you are saying he should be in a separate category, Belgic, Arrived 11 June 1912, even though he's on the same voyage to Australia? 

Thanks for your thoughts Steve,

However, in the instance you gave my family would not fit into any of the immigrant categories because they were not immigrants. They can only go into ship voyage categories because my grandfather was a ship’s captain and took up a position in Colombo for several years as Aide de Camp to the Governor.  He didn’t emigrated to Ceylon but was posted there.  The family moved there for the 5 years he was working there and my mother was born there but classified as a British citizen.  The family visited relatives in Australia and England on a number of occasions but weren’t emigrating.  It was when they finally returned to Australia in 1926 that the emigration took place for those not born in Australia. Some of Mum’s siblings were born in Australia.  It’s quite complicated.  This is why I was trying to identify which ships they were on so I can determine their visits to relatives and trying to identify disembarkation ports is proving difficult.  I find records of them on some ships but don’t know if they embarked in Colombo, Liverpool, Southampton and if they got off in Perth, Melbourne, Adelaide etc.  This is why it’s important to have as many ports identified in the voyage.  I can’t put travellers into emigration categories.  

I want to paint the whole journey picture not just one leg.  This category is for the voyage, and voyages stop at many ports along the way.  My understanding was that the categories are not for legs of a voyage but for the whole voyage.  We have passenger lists that state a number of departure points and several arrival ports. They list where someone joined the voyage and where they disembarked.  

See for a category that states the Emmy left Hamburg with 400 passengers of which 145 were for Adelaide the remainder disembarked in Melbourne prior to the Emmy arriving in Adelaide.  

It seems neater to me that this passenger list should relate to one voyage category rather than breaking it down to several categories.  That would be over complicating the issue.

Thanks Deborah,

There's a small typo in your example link for the Emmy. 

When I first looked at this project my perspective was similar to the one I think is described by Steve Harris. One category for the passengers from Hamburg to Melbourne and another category for the passengers from Hamburg to Adelaide.

I now support a perspective of a voyage of the ship. A journey that starts when migrants embark at the first port and the last passengers disembark at the last port of a ship's voyage to transport migrants. Your template shows ports where passengers might have got on or off and gives a good guide to where to look for records. 

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