Canada, America & the West Indies imports and exports to the UK, 1678-1825

Naval Office Shipping Lists, 1678-1825

Naval Office Shipping Lists, 1678-1825

The lists contain detailed information about the conduct of trade and about the voyage patterns of vessels, their size, armament, manning and passage times
Walter E. MinchintoUniversity of Exeter

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See which slave-made exports passed through American and West Indian ports

Naval office shipping lists were compiled by British naval officers in North America and the West Indies. The lists were sent periodically by colonial governors to the Board of Trade or Treasury in England. This collection contains Naval Office shipping lists compiled between 1678 and 1825. The lists cover a range of ports on the East Coast of North America. As such, they provide a comprehensive overview of the conduct of Anglo-American trade over a long period. 

Note: The data quality and level of detail within these lists does vary between colonies as it was highly dependent on the diligence or otherwise of the administration's Naval Officer.


Canada, America & the West Indies imports and exports to the UK, 1678-1825...

Containing 22,582 pages belonging to 21 documents housed in 5 volumes...

View the Volumes & Documents 


Nova Scotia, 1730-1820

The Nova Scotia naval office lists have been reproduced in sequence as far as possible; however, some lists have been...

North Eastern American States, 1686-1769

These lists cover four core North Eastern American states: Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and New Jersey. Each of these states...

South Eastern American States, 1689-1769

These lists cover four core South Eastern American states: Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, and Virginia. Each of these states had...

Jamaica, 1685-1818

These lists cover the port of Kingston in Jamaica for the years 1685 to 1818. As with the naval office...


  • These records cover Canadian ports from Main-a-dieu to Cumberland in Nova Scotia as well as Saint John in New Brunswick. While they don't include the American Revolution, they do take in the 1812 War.
  • The American records for the Eastern states cover ports from New Castle, NH to St Augustine, FL. The earliest records start in 1686 and were just handwritten lists, the latest tables of entries run until 1769.
  • The West Indian records extend from Bermuda to Jamaica, Trinidad and Suriname, including a number of colonies in-between. Each British colony would trade with different neighbours, see those trade links here.
  • As these lists developed, details of where ships were built and registered were included. By comparing these lists it is possible to see who the major shipbuilding nations were and for who, during the 18th and 19th centuries.
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