This is an interesting letter for several reasons. Similar letters, or
those complaining, about conditions on the P & O mail steamers to and from
India appeara in the Times of India and presumably other papers from time to
I note that this one in relation to the Candia is dated Suez, July 17 - from
this I guess (but haven't checked yet) that this ship was doing the Eastern
end of the 'Overland Route' - i.e. the passengers will have disembarked at
Suez, to travel overland to Alexandria where they will embark another ship
which will travel through the Mediterranean and on to London
The date is important - July 17 - during the monsoon seasons and mid-year,
there tend to be less people travelling, (and certainly this is the case for
the opposite direction from west to east) with the result that the steamers
are less crowded and the 'nobs' get better attention from the captain and
officers. It is also likely that this is the time when conditions at sea
are more testing for the captain and crew, so their efforts are extra
In contrast, people travelling in November to January, particularly west to
east, experience a very different set of conditions on board, with extreme
overcrowding leading to unsanitary conditions, short tempers, inability of
captain and crew to give the attention to certain passengers which they
think is their right, etc.
So - well done Captain Woodgate!
From: eleanore [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Friday, April 01, 2011 2:25 AM
To: India List
Subject: [INDIA] P&O SS Candia Passengers 1858 from India and China
This item transcribed from The Times of Thursday, July 29,
1858, p6, may interest some of you. Surnames were not
capitalized in the article, but are in the transcription for
the convenience of researchers.
THE STEAMSHIP CANDIA
TO THE EDITOR OF THE TIMES.
Sir, - At the request of the passengers from India and China
by the Steamer Candia, I beg to forward the accompanying copy
of a letter which they have addressed to Captain Woodgate,
the commander of that vessel, and which they are specially
desirous should receive publicity through the columns of The Times.
If Englishmen growl out their complaints in no measured
terms, they are equally ready to express their satisfaction
warmly; and it is in consideration of the special merits of
Captain Woodgate that we ask of you to give insertion to our
letter in The Times, which is the Englishman's organ wherever
I am, dear Sir, your obedient servant,
Suez, July 17. W. GRANT.
"Peninsula and Oriental Steam Ship Candia July 17, 1858, at Suez.
"My dear Sir, - Your passengers before leaving the Candia are
desirous of expressing their heartfelt gratitude for the
kindness and attention they have received at your hands.
There are few of us who have not made several voyages to and
from India or China; yet never has it been our good fortune
to sail under the command of one who laboured more earnestly
or more successfully than yourself to promote the comfort and
happiness of his passengers.
"The masterly and seamanlike manner in which you have managed
the ship under your command has called forth universal admiration.
"In bidding you adieu, and tendering you our most earnest
wishes for your future welfare and happiness, we have to beg
that you will convey to Mr. Gaby our best thanks for the many
obligations under which he has placed us, and our sincere
hope that he may speedily obtain that promotion of which we
feel assured he is eminently deserving.
"We remain, dear Sir, yours very faithfully,
"W. D'AGUILAR, Lieutenant-Colonel Royal Horse Artillery.
Charles FELLOWES, Captain Royal Navy.
D. BAIRD, Bart., Major 98th Regiment.
G.B. HARMAN, Major, unattached.
G. GRAVIER, Pondicherry.
J.R. STUART, Captain 19th Regiment.
G.B. TOD [sic], M.C.S.
P. FENWICK, Lt. 25th B.N.I.
N.G. PROBYN, B.C.S.
T.R. AMESBURY, B.Y.C.
J.K. MACKENZIE, Lt. 86 Reg.
W. DENNY, Capt. 70th Regt.
W.O. GUEST, Lt. R.A.
W.C. WARD, Com. R.N.
P.D. NICHOL, Lt.
J. PEARSE, Surg. Mad. Army.
F.R. HUTTON, 23rd R.W.F.
W.M. DOWELL, Capt. R.N.
J.G. RUIS, Consl. Spnsh.
T.H. HOUSTON, Capt. 4th R.
E.R. KEENE, Maj. Queen's Bays.
E. ST. GEORGE, Capt. 1 E.B.F.
T. MARCADIEN, surveyor.
J.E. HALL, 13th Lt. Infantry.
A. JACOMETTI, Consul de France.
H. DAWSON, 14th Lt. Dragoons.
C.R. SCOTT, R.N.
W.H.R. CURLL [sic], E.I.R.C.
W.A. FITZROY, 23d R.W.F.
W. PORTER, Marine Assistant Commissioner, Arracan.
H. REILLEY, Com. R.N.
H. BOND, Master R.N.
Jose A. deYRIBARREN.
W. VAN OMMEROW.
E. BRADFORD, shipmaster, Boston, United States.
W.H. HARRIS, Assist.-Surg., Madras.
W.B. PARTRIDGE, Assist.-Surg., Bengal Army.
H. CAMPBELL, Lt. B.I.
D. ROUTH, B.C.S., retired.
J.M. CAMPBELL, Lt. M.E.
J.R. HENDERSON, Lieut.
John BAKER, Lieut. 22d Regt.
John RUSSELL, Captain Madras Army.
F. CROFTON, Acting-Lieut. R.N.
G.M. OGILVIE, M.D., Surgeon Bombay Army."