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Call Signs of Ships

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Contents

Description

In 1857 the United Kingdom sponsored a system of four letter flag signal codes (call signs) for vessels - The Commercial Code of Signals [1]. Around 1900 the Commercial Code of Signals had become the International Code of Signals.

From the 1st January 1871 the Marryat's Code of Signals was discontinued and the Commecial Code was used in New Zealand.[2]

At first only 18 letters of the alphabet were used from B to W.

If a call sign has 4 characters, the first character or figure of the ship's call sign means the country code for the ships registration under this country's flag. The other 3 characters have no special meaning.[3]

This is a list of the ships I have found with a call sign. The 'year' is the year in which I found the call sign documented with the ship.

List of Ships, Call Signs, Type and Year

Ship Call Sign Type Tons Year Port / Location
Aethelbert QFRB Barque 818 1892 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Agnes Lilian JGVN Ship 1897 New Zealand
Agostino Rombolt NBRG Barque 1897 Auckland, New Zealand
Andes WMDK Barque 1897 New Zealand
Annie Stafford TBHR 1297 1892 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Aorangi VSMG Steam Ship 4163 1892 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Ashmore OSJR Ship 1099 1891 Lyttelton, New Zealand
Auckland NGPJ Ship 1895 New Zealand
Auriga BLJK Barque 1897 New Zealand
Austral WJFR Steamer 1883 Auckland, New Zealand
Ayr HCDW Barque 1872 Auckland, New Zealand
Barrowdale HMTS Ship 1895 New Zealand
Blenheim QLSP Ship 1897 Auckland, New Zealand
Burrumbeet WHFQ Steamer 1895 Melbourne, Australia
Canterbury MWBD Ship 1897 New Zealand
Cavalier SLPT Ketch 1895 Dunedin, New Zealand
City of Delhi WPVL ship 1889 Lyttelton, New Zealand
Clan McLeod MRVJ Barque 1895 New Zealand
Clansman SLFR Brigantine 1890 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Corinilla KBVQ Barque 1872 Auckland, New Zealand
Coronation WHJQ Schooner 1906 Auckland, New Zealand
Crusader HCLB Ship 1058 1892 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Cynisca RJTB Barque 1895 New Zealand
Defiance SLMR Brigantine 1880 New Zealand
Derwent KGVF Brigantine 1872 Auckland, New Zealand
Doris Broderson NFMP Barque 1895 New Zealand
Eunice NFLT Barquentine 1895 New Zealand
Euterpe VPJK Ship 1895 New Zealand
Gladiateur HKPT Barque 1872 Auckland, New Zealand
Haere-mai WHIP Schooner 1905 Auckland, New Zealand
Himalaya VTKM Barque 1608 1892 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Himitangi QHWL Steamer 1899 New Zealand
Indramayo LDFP Steam Ship 4110 1892 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Invercargill NCMP Ship 1897 New Zealand
James Craig MRVJ Barque 1906 Auckland, New Zealand
Jasper WVPL Barquentine 1897 New Zealand
Jessie Readman JSPC Ship 962 1892 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
K. Webster JLWP Barque 1895 New Zealand
Kaikoura VFPR Steamer 1895 New Zealand
Kashgar (John Williams)  ?KSH Barque 1896 New Zealand
Karamea RKLV Steamer 1900 New Zealand
Kooringa WHFR Steamer 1905 New Zealand
Kotuku PRSW Steamer 1900 New Zealand
Kumara RHJC Steamer 1899 New Zealand
Lady Jocelyn KVPS ship 1889 Lyttelton, New Zealand
Lake Erie HMTK Barque 1897 New Zealand
Lucibelle VGND Ship 1865 Auckland, New Zealand
Mataura PGRC Steamer 1896 New Zealand
Marlborough QFCH ship 1889 New Zealand
Minnyhive JWFC Barque 1889 Lyttelton, New Zealand
Monowai SLPV Steamer 1890 New Zealand
Morning Light SRPJ ship 1889 Lyttelton, New Zealand
Nelson NKRC Ship 1897 New Zealand
New Zealand  ? Barque 660 1892 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Nor'-wester WHRL Barque 1897 New Zealand
Norna KTPB Barque 1897 New Zealand
Otaki PGWQ ship 1889 Lyttelton, New Zealand
Pakeha  ? Steam Ship 4331 1892 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Pallas NSQV Barque 1897 New Zealand
Penobscot JSVG Barque 1897 Auckland, New Zealand
Pleione WTRV Ship 1895 New Zealand
Pirate TMRK Schooner 1895 New Zealand
Polar Star HPFM Ship 1872 Auckland, New Zealand
Queen Bee PVBC Ship 1872 Auckland, New Zealand
Ralston HDRM Ship 1889 Lyttelton, New Zealand
Rangitiki VNKP Ship 1897 Auckland, New Zealand
Rarawa WHJN Steamer 1905 Auckland, New Zealand
Robert Henderson TWBP Ship 1872 Auckland, New Zealand
Rotokino SLPG Steam Ship 1263 1892 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Routenbeck NTQS Barque 930 1892 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Rudolph Josephy MDKT 1889 Lyttelton, New Zealand
Schwanden HFRS Barque 857 1892 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Senorita RQWK Barque 1900 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Shirley Hassell WHJR Steamer 1906 Auckland, New Zealand
St. Kilda WMNT Barquentine 1895 New Zealand
Star of England LCFN Steam Ship 2424 1897 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Star of the East QJKN Barque 734 1892 Port Chalmers, New Zealand
Southern Isle EVFF Schooner 1906 New Zealand
Specialist LNCH Steam Ship 1891 Lyttelton, New Zealand
Star NSHW Steamer 1895 New Zealand
Taranaki QMWP Ship 1897 New Zealand
Te Anau WLSB Steamer 1880 New Zealand
Upolu SLMP Ship 1892 New Zealand
Waimea QNRD Barque 1895 New Zealand
Wairuna NBGL Steamer 1905 New Zealand
Wellington NMCK Ship 1897 New Zealand
Westland WVPC Ship 1895 New Zealand
Westralia VBWN Steamer 1897 New Zealand
Whakatane RMDN Steamer 1900 New Zealand
Wolverine VMPB Barque 1895 New Zealand
Zealandia JGHV Ship 1895 New Zealand
Zealandia NFMB Steamer 1899 New Zealand

References

  1. https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/DSC18641219.2.36?query=commercial%20code
  2. https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/DSC18701124.2.4.2?query=commercial%20code
  3. https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/DSC18690108.2.3.4?query=commercial%20code

Sources

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Thank you for showing an interest in this page of early New Zealand 19th Century history.

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