West Indiaman ship

The West Indiaman Britannia.
View full size imageThe West Indiaman Britannia. © NMM
The West India Docks had space for more than 600 large ships. West Indiamen varied in size. Most were strong ocean going merchant ships designed to sail from Britain to the Carribean - which meant being able to handle the Atlantic storms.

Most West Indiamen were armed to ward off pirates and the ships of rival nation's. Their main role was as cargo carriers, especially for sugar and rum.

 Find out more:
Trail West India Docks family trail
Galleries The West India Docks
Stories Going for growth: The West India and the Greenland Docks