Ireland 1624



A Journal kept by Richard Newall while loading the ship Mayflower

at Wexford, Ireland in 1624


John P. Newell ©

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In the summer of 1623 London merchants Humphrey Slaney (Slany) and William Clobery (Cloberry) organized a venture to transport Scottish colonist to New Scotland (present day Nova Scotia) and, while en route, to collect fish in Newfoundland that would be sold in Spain on the return voyage. The master of the ship they used hired his cousin Richard Newall as an agent to manage the collection of fish in Newfoundland while the ship proceeded on to Nova Scotia 1. Prior to departing on this voyage Richard started a journal of letters and accounts to record his ventures and this journal is preserved in the Bodleian Library, Oxford University and is described in their catalog as:  A folio volume, 140 leaves, in contemporary vellum. Containing copies of letters and accounts, 1623-5, of Richard Newall, London merchant, trading with Newfoundland 2. Richard’s last entry for the 1623 voyage to Newfoundland was a letter written at Malaga, Spain on 24 October 1623, as he was preparing for the voyage back to England.

The subsequent entries in Richard’s journal for 1624 all relate to a voyage to Ireland during which he was tasked by Clobery with securing a cargo, primarily pipe-staves 3, for a ship called the Mayflower and supervising the loading of the ship.  Richard’s Journal contains six letters written in Ireland between 3 April, 1624 and 9 May, 1624 that document his activities related to purchasing pipe-staves and the subsequent loading of the ship. These letters represent the primary data source for this paper. A second data set examined are letters and records of accounts preserved in the Chester Archives related to two ships that loaded cargos  in Ireland during 1624 for shipment to Tenerife in the Canary Islands 4. These documents relate to a different export operation from that described by Richard Newall but the cargo and some players involved are common to both operations and the documents support each other by filling in gaps that would otherwise exist.


Background & Historical Context

By the start of the 17th century Spain and Portugal were supplying large quantities of wine for the English market. The English of that period were especially fond of Sack (a type of wine similar to Sherry) from the Spanish Canary Islands. The wine trade was primarily conducted by English ships sailing from English or Irish ports. Ireland had an advantage as a point of departure for this shipping since the island still had supplies of white oak which could be exported to Spain as pipe-staves; thereby, securing a cargo for the outward voyage.  As supplies of English oak declined in the late 16th century Ireland replaced England as the primary source for this wood. For example:  ‘Ireland by 1615 sent 30 cargoes of staves annually to the Mediterranean and by 1625 it was said that France and Spain casked all their wine in Irish wood’ 5.

The trade in wine and pipe-staves between Spain and England even existed during the latter years of the reign of Elizabeth I when there was ongoing conflict between the two countries.  In 1593 Sir Walter Raleigh, who had been awarded considerable estates in Ireland by Elizabeth I, was exporting Irish pipe-staves to Spain 6. This trade was able to exist in Spain during periods of conflict either by the English ships posing as Irish, possibly in collusion with local Spanish officials, 7 or in places like the Canary Islands where distance from Madrid and economic necessary overruled politics 8. On the English side the power of the merchant class and the national taste for Sack thwarted government attempts to stop the trade.

Exporting pipe-staves from Ireland depended on a supply of white oak, a method of transporting the wood to a tidewater port, landowners with rights to cut the oak, permits to export the wood to southern markets and merchants to arrange for transport and sale of the staves in foreign ports. By the start of the 17th century the first of these requirements was becoming harder to find. Irish oak in close proximity to major ports like Wexford had been depleted to supply: wood for shipbuilding, pipe-staves for export, charcoal for smelting or to simply clear the land for agriculture.  As this readily accessible forest was cut it was necessary to move inland but this was only practicable in areas near rivers that could be used to transport the wood; therefore, the next forest to be exploited were those in the drainage area of major rivers. The River Slaney, that enters the sea at Wexford, was navigable by seagoing ships for the first 23 km but after Enniscorthy, the last navigable port, pipe staves had to be floated down the river. This process required improvements to the channel and extra cost to manage the transport the wood so the forest immediately upstream Enniscorthy were the next to be exploited. In the late 16th century the main landowner in this area was Sir Henry Wallop 9 who was granted significant estates near Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford by Elizabeth I.  In 1586, only a few years after acquiring the estate, Sir Henry started clearing rocks from the River Slaney to make it suitable for transporting pipe-staves 10.  Sir Henry died in 1599 and his son, also Sir Henry, took over the operation; however, by the second decade of the 1600s the Wallops had exploited much of the oak forest on their estate and were looking further upstream for wood 11.

By the 1620s the last stands of virgin oak forest were in the woods of Shillelagh, in the south of County Wicklow, near the headwaters of the Slaney.

The forest of Shillelagh had remained relatively untouched due to the difficulty/expense of floating the wood down the relatively small headwater streams 12. These forest were granted to Sir Henry Harrington in 1578 but he had done little to exploit them; however, in 1608 a group of English merchants purchased the woods 13  perhaps in response to comments by Sir Arthur Chichester, the Lord Deputy of Ireland, that:  ‘the woods of Shillelagh were sufficient for the King’s ships for twenty years’ 14 .  In October 1608, Chichester in a letter to Lord Salisbury delivered by a Mr. Mytton [Mitton], one of the partners in this venture, indicated that:  ‘He [Mytton] and others have bought the woods of Shillelagh of Sir Henry Harrington the greatest part whereof they intend to convert into pipe staves15.  However, within a few years the sentiment in England shifted towards preserving these forest for the use of the Royal Navy and in June 1610 the Privy Council direct the Lord Deputy to ‘take precautions for the preservation of woods in Ireland 16.  In 1612 Calcott Chambre, an Oxfordshire landowner and later MP, acquired a share of the Shillelagh venture and over the next few years he bought out the other partners in the venture 17.  Richard Mitton, one of the partners that Chambre bought out, became keeper of the customs at the port of Wexford 18.  Chambre now faced the biggest obstacle to his venture since exploiting this wood required more than ownership of the lands since the Crown exercised control over the forest and the rights to export wood.

As indicated earlier, Sir Walter Raleigh had rights to cut oak and export pipe-staves from his estates in Counties Cork and Waterford that were granted in the Reign of Elizabeth I. In 1593 Sir Henry Wallop, situated in County Wexford, obtained a license ‘for transporting of pipe staves and hogshead board only to the Isles of the Madeiras, Canaries, Bordeaux and Rochelle’; however, in July 1596 in a letter to Sir Robert Cecil he complained that Mr Pyne (Henry Pyne a tenant of Raleigh and partner in export of pipe staves) was claiming an exclusive license 19. In 1602, Raleigh through the intervention of Sir Robert Cecil 20, sold his Irish Estates to Richard Boyle (later Sir Richard, Earl of Cork).  Account records kept by Boyle show that between 1608 and 1615 he was actively exporting pipe-staves using a John van den Bogarde as an agent 21.  In subsequent years Boyle’s records show that the volume of exports increased significantly and a number of different London merchants were involved. Between 1616 and 1628 Boyle’s diaries recorded transactions involving four million staves 22.

In 1616 Calcott Chambre, with the assistance of his Oxfordshire neighbour Sir William Cope, acquired a license to export pipe-staves from his property in Shillelagh 23. Cope was well connected in the Court of James I and had family connections to both the Boyle and Villiers families. The grant to Chambre also notes that the East India Company also held rights to export pipe-staves probably in connection with a short lived project to build ships in Ireland:  ‘at these works they [EIC] built themselves ships one of four hundred and another of five hundred tons burden and here they used also to provide themselves with wood for their voyages 24.   Early the next year Richard Mitten, one of the original partners in the 1608 purchase of Shillelagh, who went on to be collector of customs at Wexford, also acquired the rights to export pipe-staves. The grant states that it was made: ‘at the request of the late sir John Graham Knt., deceased, to whom this privilege had been granted’ 25.  Sir John was most famous as being the court sponsor of George Villiers the future Duke of Buckingham.  Both of these transactions have been linked to Villiers and suggest that he was actively, if not publically, involved in the export of Irish pipe staves 26.  Given the supply of timber, motivated landowners and a license to export; it was inevitable that wood from Shillelagh would be on the market. However, getting this wood to southern markets still required merchants with ships, money and connections to transport the wood to southern markets.


Richard’s Irish Letters

Richard Newall’s first letter from Ireland was dated 3 April, 1624 at Wexford and was addressed to William Cloberry (Clobery) 27.  This letter makes reference to an earlier letter (not in Journal) that was sent to Cloberry upon Richard’s arrival in Wexford on 24 March, 1624.   He goes on to explain that not finding Samuel Samson at Wexford he proceeded to Enniscorthy (further up the River Slaney) to meet with the agent of Sir Henry Wallop and had proceeded to load staves. He also indicates that on the morning of the 24th he had been contacted by Robert Gee agent for Calcott Chambre ‘desiring to have boat to take away some as you have agreed with him for to be receivable later’. Subsequent to this Richard states: ‘at my return from Enniscorthy finding not Samuel returned: I dispatched away a messenger to Dublin with a letter that I might have his assistance and knowledge of the state of your business’. This indicates that Cloberry had not completely briefed Richard on the operation and that Samson (who was probably in Dublin) was supposed to provide this information. In this letter Richard seems pessimistic about securing a full load of pipe-staves stating: ‘greatly doubt me we shall not exceed 50 m 28: howsoever what may possibly be done shall be achieved’. He also makes reference to provisions delivered to a Jn Cleark (John Clark) as per a letter from Cloberry and indicates that Clark had:near upon two hundred tons of Calf [skins] made up and bound’. It is not clear from the letter whether this was to be loaded or was potential cargo. He also complains about the lack of provisions for the voyage available in Wexford:  ‘for as I know not almost how we shall be provided unless we send to Waterford’.

The Sir Henry Wallop identified in this letter was an English MP and the son of the Sir Henry who was granted estates near Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford by Elizabeth I.   By 1624 Wallop Sr. and Jr. had exploited much of the oak forest on their estate and this could explain why Richard was pessimistic about acquiring a full load.  The Calcott Chambre whose agent contacted Richard on his arrival was the person, described earlier, who owned the woods of Shillelagh in the south of Co. Wicklow.  Both Calcott Chambre and his agent Robert Gee are also referenced in the documents from the Chester Archives.  John Clark, who had cargo shipped to Ireland, will be discussed later in this paper.  The most elusive individual noted in Richard’s Irish letters is Samuel Samson who also appears in later letters but does not appear to have left any other records. There is a possibility that the name might be Samuel Simpson which is a name found in Devon where William Clobery’s family was established.

The next short letter in Richards Journal was written to Mr. Gee, the agent for Calcott Chambre, on the same day as the previous letter (3 April, 1624).  In this letter Richard acknowledges the receipt of an earlier letter from Gee and indicates that he will first load cargo he has acquired from Sir Henry Wallop. In this letter Richard also indicates his intention to travel to Dublin to find Samuel Samson.

On 12 April, 1624 Richard writes his next letter to Mr Matt Derensie (de Renzie).   In this letter Richard references the bearer of this letter as Samuel Samson which indicates that he has made contact with Samson. The letter to Derensie outlines that in a meeting with William Cloberry in London he was directed to Derensie.  Richard indicates that he was expecting to receive 200 pounds upon his arrival but it is not clear from the letter if he was expecting that from Derensie; however, Richard was now approaching Derensie through Samson (who had suggested this approach) for one hundred pounds: ‘which I pray you may be paid unto the said bearer [Samson] according to the content I send you here and according to the time there shall be current payment again made you in London from the said Mr. Wm Cloberry’.

Given the absence of a banking system and the dangers of carrying money at a time when pirates were still operating in Irish waters it was common practice for merchants to reach agreements whereby they acted as bankers for each other by exchanging letters of credit. This Matt Derensie is probably Matthew de Renzi a German born cloth merchant who moved to London in 1604 then to Ireland in 1606 where he became friendly with Sir Arthur Chichester, Lord Deputy of Ireland, and eventually acquired considerable lands in Ireland. At the time of Richard’s visit he was a government administrator in Dublin 29. This de Renzi would be the type of person in Dublin who would be known to a London merchant like Clobery and who would be able to provide these funds.

The next letter in Richard’s Journal was also written on 12 April, 1624 and was addressed to Mr George Bodiloe (possibly Bodley).  In this letter Richard also solicits one hundred pounds from Bodiloe, to be paid to Samson. Again, the support being a letter from Cloberry (not included in Richards Journal) and promising payment in London. Unfortunately, there was no good historical candidate for Mr Bodiloe; however, there was a Georgius Bodley in Dublin in 1624 30 who may have been a son or relative of Sir Josias Bodley who was buried in Dublin in 1617. Sir Josias was from an established Devon family as was William Clobery.

The next letter to William Cloberry is undated but the letter following it, also sent to Cloberry, references a letter sent on 24 April, 1624 so it is probable that this is that letter. Richard opens this letter with a reference back to his last letter to Cloberry: ‘you may please to understand that whereas by my last [letter] dated the 3rd of April I wrote unto you not fully understanding the state of your businesses. He then explains that Samuel Samson arrived in Wexford on the night of April 3rd (after Richard sent his last letter) and explains that Samson not having the money he expected set out to collect the money in Dublin which explains the content of the preceding two letters dated 12 April, 1624. On the day this letter is written Samson: ‘departed [for Dublin] together with your letter of credit with intent to take up one hundred pounds for the furtherance of you affairs’. This makes it clear that Samson is the key organizer for assembling the cargo and arranging for finances.  Richard then goes on to explain the state of the ship: ‘we have here before the town of Wexford taken in as much as we may before we go down to the harbor mouth and yet are doubtful:  whether we shall have water enough we have aboard at present here upon 30 m of staves and as I judge our  ship near 2/3 full: to that if we take in all the casks [other cargo]  where is here ready I doubt me we shall not be able to take in 35 m of staves. His concern here relate to water depths in the River Slaney and inner Wexford harbour which are preventing him from fully loading the ship.  He also complains about the cost and availability of supplies for the ship in Wexford: ‘for our victualing here is a bad time being dear and yet hardly to be gotten’. He then indicates that he is hoping to depart Wexford in 10 days.

The next and final letter from Ireland letter is also to Cloberry and was written at Wexford on 9 May, 1624.  It opens with Richard describing how after his last letter on 24 April Samuel Samson set out for Dublin and obtained another one hundred pounds charged to Cloberry’s account. Since Samson’s return they had laden aboard the Mayflower (the first reference to ship): ‘35290 pipe staves with 190 tons of pipes 10 tons of hogsheads [a cask with approximately half the volume of a pipe] with 6 tons of half hogsheads too hundred tanned hides 60 dozen of calf skins tanned and 24 dozen of fine stockings all which is safe aboard’.  He continues: ‘the ship being also so full as what conveniently may be and now at Jnstant 31 please be god cleared and ready to sail with the first fair wind.

Richard discusses the provisions stating: ‘we have here also made our provisions for  ye remainder of our voyage for 5 months which god grant we may accomplish and whereas I wrote you by the  last letter that the provisions which were to be delivered to Jn Clark were so’. However, he suggest that the master (of the Mayflower) ‘detained thereof 2 hogsheads of beer a barrel of peas with the firkin [small cask] of butter’. This is the last reference to this voyage in Richard’s letters; however, in his account books for March 1625 there is a reference that probably refers to the end of this voyage: ‘for wages unto Wm Rider his last voyage in September 1624 with Jn Barker’ 32.  This reference provides the key for understanding the origins of Richard’s voyage.


The Ship Mayflower

Horrocks in his 1922 paper on the ship Mayflower33 indicates that:  ‘on the 4th and 5th March, 1624, Maylower of London, with John Barker as master, was loading in the Thames a miscellaneous cargo for Ireland and New England, entered in the name of Edward Brudnell’ 34.  Given the similarity in the name of the ship, the reference to John Barker as Master and the date of departure compared to Richard’s arrival in Wexford provide undeniable evidence that this is the same ship. The statement that cargo was loaded for Ireland matches the supplies Richard delivered to John Clark; however, the main disconnect comes from the cargo loaded and the destination of the ship.  Pipe staves and hides were not the cargo that would be loaded for New England in 1624; these items are clearly cargo intended for Spain. It is possible that the intended route was to the Canary Islands then to the New World via the southern route but why continue to New England with an empty ship? It is possible that the route changed after departure or that the destination was falsified. One reason for falsifying the destination could have been that in early March 1624 tensions were building between England and Spain with England declaring War on March 10.

In his 1922 paper Horrocks was trying to establish if this Maylower was the Mayflower of the Pilgrims in 1620. It is general accepted that the Mayflower of the Pilgrims was scrapped in London sometime after 26 May, 1624 so Horrocks was trying to determine if it was possible that the ship  made  a return voyage to New England between 5 March 1624 and 26 May 1624 which would still make this ship a candidate. He was also searching for evidence that the ship arrived in New England after this date which would rule it out. However, he could not find any evidence that the ship arrived in New England in 1624.  Based on Richard’s Journal it is clear that the ship was in Wexford for most of this time period.

Richard’s Journal cannot be used to completely eliminate this ship as a candidate for the Pilgrims ship of 1620. While the reference to the voyage ending in Sept. 1624 is strongly suggestive that this was not the ship scrapped in May 1624; the evidence still leaves the possibility that the ship was damaged after departing Wexford and made its way to London, where it was scrapped. The note in Richard’s journal does not specifically identify the ship that returned in September so the cargo could have been delivered in another ship; however, it is difficult to comprehend that such an event would not warrant some comment either in Richards Journal or port records reviewed by Horrocks.

One other reference in Richards Journal has possible connections with the voyage of the Pilgrim’s Mayflower. The John Clark who had cargo shipped from London to Wexford and who had calf skins for shipment could possibly be the John Clark who was pilot on the Pilgrim’s Mayflower. This John Clark reportedly died in Virginia in 1623 but there is no definitive reference to his death and the original source35 simply indicates that he: ‘Was hired by Daniel Gookin, owner of the Province, to take that ship to Virginia, which arrived April 10, 1623, and soon after this he died in the colony. The potential link between the John Clark of Richard’s journal and the John Clark of the Plymouth Mayflower goes beyond the name.  John Clark of the Mayflower was subsequently employed by Daniel Gookin shipping cattle from Gookin’s estates in Cork, Ireland to Virginia while Richard’s John Clark was dealing in Irish calf skins.


Chester Voyages

One additional data source was examined in this paper that shed more light on the trade in pipe staves with Spain in 1624. Handwritten documents contained in the Chester Archives 36 relate to loading two ships, Sara and Transport of London, with pipe-staves in Ireland for shipment to Tenerife in the Canary Islands. The ship Transport made one voyage in July 1623 and the Sara made voyages in June and November 1624 and while they provide much less detail than Richard’s Journal they do provide information on the key individuals involved.

The Chester Documents examined consisted of: copies of two letters written in London, signed by Robert Parkhurst37 and dated July 21, 1624; a cover for these two letters explaining that they were copies and who they were addressed to; two pages of accounts dated 25 July 1624 and a letter written at Wexford dated 6 November 1624.

The cover for the Parkhurst letters explains that the first letter was to Mr. Gee and Mr Donogho (possibly Donohoe or Donoghue) at the Castle of Carnow in Shillelagh in the County of Wicklow and also Oxford.  This Mr. Gee is undoubtedly the Robert Gee, agent for Calcott Chambre, referenced in Richard Newall’s letters 38.

In the first letter Parkhurst explains that he has bought 64 m of pipe staves ‘of my good friend Calcottt Chambre’ Parkhurst indicates that the goods are to be loaded on the ship Transport and immediately after he mentions a Henry West who is also referenced in the accounting papers in connection with the voyage of the ship Transport of London in July 1624. It is probable that this is the same Henry West who was master of the 200 ton ship Transport of London in 1626 39. In this letter Parkhurst also refers to his man Timothy Thompson in Dublin. He further specifies that the pipe-staves are to be delivered any time after the ninth of July and the ship should be laden within 21 days.

Again, based on the cover, we know that the second letter from Parkhurst was addressed to ‘his man’ Timothy Tompson in Dublin. This letter outlines the arrangements for Tompson with one difference from the first letter; in that here he references having bargained for 50 thousand pipe staves from Chambre.  This letter also mentions a bill paid to a Mr. Barnard.

The accounting records consist of two pages outlining money owed and owing as of 25 July, 1624. These accounts of moneys owed relate to several different voyages; in particular there is an entry related to an adventure in the ship Transport of London with Henry West dated 25 July 1624. This is clearly the voyage referenced in the letters from Parkhurst. There is also an entry for an adventure in the ship Sara dated 30 June 1624. The entry for the ship Sara also mentions Tenerife (Canary Islands), a Mr. Lambert and a Mr. Austin.  There are also several other entries for ‘adventures’ in the ship Sara in 1622 and 1623 that include references to a Conrado Dobryew (Conrad de Brier) in Tenerife 40.

The final document in this set was written at Wexford and dated 6 November 1624. It appears to be a letter of agreement outlining details of the lading of a ship Sara at Wexford with ‘the full number of three and twenty thousand and 17 caskes of pipe staves(a load of approximately 125 tons) 41 for a voyage to Tenerife, Canary Islands.  This letter is written in a more legible script and is clearly designed as a legal document. The author identifies himself (‘by mee’) as Philip Beranadi and the name of the ship is followed by another name which suggest that this person was the captain or master of the ship. However, the original name which appears to be John Lambert has been crossed out and replaced by Antony Austen. These are the same individuals referenced in the accounting records in connection with the June 1624 voyage of the ship Sara. This suggests that the document was prepared in advance but that Mr. Austen had replaced Mr. Lambert. The document further states that: ‘in witness whereof the said Mr. [no name here] shall set his hand to this bill of ladingand is signed with what is apparently the signature of Antony Austen. The document states that the cargo is: ’for the account and adventure of Mr. Robert Creroes and company London Merchants’ and that the cargo is intended for ‘Conrado de Brier’ merchant in the Isle of Tenerife. This is the same person referenced in the accounting records in connection with the earlier voyages. Given the cross references between the November letter and the accounting documents and similarities in style it is probable that Philip Bernardi was the author of both. This suggests that Bernardi was actively involved in the voyage of the ship Transport in July 1624 and multiple voyages of the ship Sara over several years.

A probable candidate for this Philip Bernardi is a Genoese merchant/diplomat, or possibly his eldest son Philip, who had a long connection with England 42. At various times he acted as a representative of Milan and Spain to the Court of James I. He was also involved in various mercantile ventures including sponsoring a ship on a privateering expedition to the Indies 43. In 1617 this expedition ran afoul of the British East India Company 44. As a result he lost his ship and in January 1619 he was to be indicted for piracy 45.  However, in April 1619 George Villiers the Duke of Buckingham wrote a letter to the Lord Chancellor requesting that as a result of a request of the Duke of Savoy (also involved in the venture) the King wished that the proceedings against Bernardi be ended 46. With his career and fortune in tatters plus his Spanish connections Bernardi would be an ideal candidate to enlist as an agent for shipping pipe-staves from Ireland to Spain. Since it has been suggested that Buckingham was involved in this business he would likely enlist someone like Bernardi.


This paper has documented Richard Newall’s role in the loading of the ship Mayflower at Wexford in the spring of 1624.  It also demonstrates the multitude of players and intricate web of connections that existed to support the export of Irish pipe-staves to Spain. These include:

  • English landowners in Ireland
  • the Landlord’s tenant farmers and agents (English and Irish)
  • the Irish workers who harvested and processed the pipe staves
  • London merchants that financed the voyages;
  • ship-owners and masters that transported the goods;
  • Spanish merchants/brokers that arranged for the sale in Spain and return cargoes of wine;
  • government officials that ensured that the permits were approved;
  • wealthy individuals that facilitated the exchange of monies; and
  • a multitude of agents, like Richard Newall, who ensured that the operation ran smoothly.

Many of the key individuals involved in the export of Irish pipe-staves in 1624 had connections to ventures in the New World and many of the associations between individuals developed in Ireland can also be found in these ventures.

This paper has demonstrated that the ship Mayflower that Richard Newall loaded in Wexford was likely the same ship as the Maylower of London, with John Barker as master, that Horrocks identified in his 1922 paper on the ship Mayflower33  .  This does not prove that the ship Mayflower used in this operation was also the Pilgrim’s Mayflower of 1620; however, this possibility cannot be completely ruled out.

As indicated earlier, 1624 was the peak year for the export of Irish pipe-staves. In March of that year England declared war on Spain and while this did not immediately stop the exports of pipe-staves; the expansion of the conflict over the subsequent years made privateering a more lucrative venture.




1   J.P. Newell, ‘Richard Newall’s voyage to Newfoundland in 1623: new insights into Sir. William Alexander’s attempts to establish a Scottish colony in Nova Scotia’, International Journal of Maritime History, 28 (2016), pp. 1102-107

2     “A folio volume, 140 leaves, in contemporary vellum. Containing copies of letters and accounts, 1623-5, of Richard Newall, London merchant, trading with Newfoundland”, Bodleian Library, Malone Collection, Oxford University.

3    Pipe Staves are oak boards used for making pipes (a large white oak cask used for storing wine). The size of a pipe varied by country with English pipes holding approximately 572 l and Spanish pipes anywhere from 455 l to 477 l.

See: T. Unwin and P. T. H. Unwin, Wine and the Vine: An Historical Geography of Viticulture and the Wine Trade (London 1991), p. 364.

Note: Pipes are different from barrels which are smaller and were generally not made from oak; barrels were commonly used for storing commodities like peas.


4     CheshireArchives‘Documents regarding ships with a cargo of pipe-staves to Tenerife, 1624, DAR/D/68/10-12. Cheshire Archives and Local Studies, Cheshire Record Office, Duke Street, Chester CH1 1RL.  With my thanks to Liz Green, Archivist for assisting with my search for these documents.


5.  E. McCracken, ‘The Irish Timber Trade in the Seventeenth Century’, Irish Forestry: Journal of the Society of Irish Foresters (1964) 21:1, p. 8.


6   R. A.  Roberts, E. Salisbury, M. Guiseppi and G.D. Owen (Eds), Calendar of the Manuscripts of the Most Honourable the Marquess of Salisbury (London, 1892), p. 464.


7   P. Croft, ‘Trading with the Enemy 1585-1604’, The History Journal, 32:2 (1989), p. 287.


8   H. Kamen, The Spanish Inquisition: A Historical Revision (New Haven, 1998), p. 279.



9   J. Stevens, A Parochial History of St. Mary Bourne (London, 1888), pp. 162-164.    .


10   Sir Henry Wallop to Sir Francis Walsingham RE: ‘His intention of breaking some rocks that encumber the river and making the Slane navigable for bearing ship plank pipe staves’

Calendar of the State Papers Relating to Ireland, Vol. CXXII, Jan 6, 1585/1586.


11   K. Hannigan and W. F. Nolan (Eds), Wicklow: History and Society (Dublin, 1994), p. 275.


12    In 1635 a visitor to this region described the process as follows:’ conveying them [pipe-staves] down by water to Ennerscoff, which is twelve miles, at which time there is required the aid and endeavour of a hundred men to conduct and guide them in this narrow shallow and crooked river which runs through this wood’.

  • Brereton, Travels in Holland, the United Provinces, England, Scotland, and Ireland 1634-1635, In: Remains Historical and Literary Connected with the Palatine Counties of Lancaster and Chester, E. Hawkins (Ed),  (Manchester, 1844)  p.146.


13   Calendar of the Patent Rolls of the Chancery of Ireland, Pat 5-11 James I (Dublin, 1800), p. 253.


14   T.P. LeFanu, ‘The Royal Forest of Glencree’, The Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, 23, (1893), p. 271.



15   Miscellaneous Notes, ‘Irish Forests nearly 300 years ago’, Forestry: A Journal of Forest and Estate Management, 11:14, (1885), pp. 525-26.


16   T.P. LeFanu, ‘The Royal Forest of Glencree’, The Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, 23, (1893), p. 272.



18   Reports from the Commissioners Appointed by His Majesty: To Execute the Measures Recommended in an Address of the House of Commons Respecting the Public Records of Ireland, Great Britain. Commissioners on the Public Records of Ireland, (1820), p. 146.


19  E.G. Atkinson (Ed), Calendar of the State Papers Relating to Ireland of the Reign of Elizabeth 1596, July-1597, December, (London, 1893).


20   A. Collins, Peerage of England: Containing a Genealogical and Historical Account of All the Peers of England (London, 1756), p. 250.


21   Lismore Castle Papers, National Library of Ireland, Collection List No. 129,

Compiled by Stephen Ball, p. 204.



22    E. McCracken, ‘The Irish Timber Trade in the Seventeenth Century’   Irish Forestry: Journal of the Society of Irish Foresters (1964), 21:1, p. 11.


23    Acts Pricy Council of England Vol 34, 1615-1616 (London, 1925), p. 617.


24   T.P. LeFanu, ‘The Royal Forest of Glencree’, The Journal of the Royal Society of Antiquaries of Ireland, 23, (1893), p. 272.


25   Calendar of the Patent Rolls of the Chancery of Ireland, James I, 14 James I, p. 314.


26    V. Treadwell, Buckingham and Ireland, 1616-1628: A Study in Anglo-Irish Politics (Dublin , 1998).

27   J.J. Howard and J.L. Chester (Eds), The Visitation of London: Anno Domini 1633, 1634, and 1635 Made By Henry St. George Kt, (London, 1880), p. 173.


28    Units for pipe-Staves: m = mille or 1200 pieces,   One hundred staves contain 120 pieces and 1 mille is 10 hundred or 1200 pieces.

R.W. Stevens, On the stowage of ships and their cargoes (Plymouth, 1858), p. 147.


29    ‘A German Planter in the Midlands’,


30   M. Lenihan, ‘The Fee Book of a Physician of the Seventeenth Century’, The Journal of the Kilkenny and South-east of Ireland Archaeological Society, 6 (1867), p. 144.


31   Possibly the area marked St John on old maps of Wexford harbour which was the location of the Church of St John


32    There was a John Barker who was master and part owner of the ship Golden Cock of London in 1627. One of the other partners in this 1627 venture was London merchant John Fowke who was associated with William Cloberry.

See: Bruce (ed), Calendar of State Papers: Of the Reign of Charles I, 1625-1629, (London, 1859), p. 299.


33    J.W.  Horrocks, ‘The Mayflower’, The Mariner’s Mirror, 8:1 (1922), p. 87.


34      Horrocks makes the connection between this Edward Brudnell and Edmond Brudenell of Stoke Mandevill, Buckinghamshire, who in July 1622 as a newly-admitted member of the Council for New England, and holder of a venturer’s patent, addressed the Privy Council in a petition in which he spoke of his resolve “to making voyage to New England for the furtherance and good of the plantation there, and with him to carry over a company of forty men or thereabouts”.

J.W.  Horrocks, ‘The Mayflower’, The Mariner’s Mirror, 8:1 (1922), p. 87.


35   E.D. Neill, History of the Virginia Company of London (Albany, 1869), p. 133.


36   Document: DAR/D/68/10-12. Cheshire Archives and Local Studies, Cheshire Record Office, Duke Street, Chester CH1 1RL.


37   Sir Robert Parkhurst: London Merchant, member of Clothworkers guild, Alderman, owner of Irish estates and Lord Mayor of London 1634–5.


38   Calcott Chambre was based at Carnew Castle in Shillelagh, County Wicklow and also had estates in Oxfordshire.


39   Letters of Marque for Ship Transport of London (160 tons), Sept 15, 1626, Henry West Captain or Master, Marmaduke Roydon and Rowland Wilson Owners.

Bruce (Ed), Calendar of State Papers, Domestic Series, in the reign of Charles I, 1628-1629 (London, 1859), p. 290.


40   H.C. Lea, The Inquisition in the Spanish Dependencies (New York, 1908), p. 172.


41   Estimated tonnage of the load of pipe-staves for the Ship Sara using Richard Newall’s data for the loading of the Mayflower where: 35290 pipe staves with 190 tons of pipes (equals  185.7 staves / ton or 6.46 tons per mille of staves)  so the load for the ship Sara of 23000 pipe staves = 19.16 m or 124 tons.


42   J. Bernardi, A Short History of the Life of Major John Bernardi, Appendix:  A true Copy of the Diploma or Patent of Count of the Empire granted to the Author’s Grand Father in the Year 1629 and a Translation of it into English (London, 1729), p. 9.


43   Mar 18, 1618: ‘Account of the capture of two English pirates the Francis 110 tons set forth by Sir Robt Rich and the Lion of 100 tons belonging to Philip Bernardi an Italian the rescue of a junk belonging to the Queen mother [of Mogul] which they were about to surprise very kindly taken by the Great Mogul and the great ones’

W.N. Sainsbury, Calendar of State Papers, Colonial Series: East Indies, China and Japan 1617-1621 (London, 1870), p. 139.


44   Jan 22, 1619:  ‘Answer of the Company to Lord Rich about the surprising of his ships that they must and will justify the action having done nothing but what they had power from his Majesty by his letters patent and that they intend no restitution As touching the offenders themselves Bernardi and Jones are to be put in suit’.

Ibid p. 239.


45   Jan 26, 1619: ‘An action entered against the Bull in the Admiralty Court Bernardi and Thomas J ones to be indicted for piracy’

Ibid p. 240.


46   B. Montagu (Ed), The Works of Francis Bacon (London, 1830), p. 368.