Steamers of British Guiana – By Dmitri Allicock

Sprostons Dry Dock of October 26, 1867

Sprostons Dry Dock of October 26, 1867

Steamers of British Guiana

And so have disappeared over the horizon that regal age of the Steamers of Guyana, what some of us might have experienced and also what our fore-parents spoke so fondly of.

By Dmitri Allicock

The cautious introduction of steam propulsion to vessels in British Guiana brought the golden age of sailing ships and the reliance on the currents of the wind to an end in the 1800s and launched an era of both commercial and passenger steamships in early Guyana.

The steamer service in Guyana dates back to the early 19th century when the colonial government contracted a few privately-owned steamers to provide transportation for commuters and for shipping of produce.
The first official documentation of a steamer service can be traced to the establishment of a Local Steamer Navigation Company, which appears to have been founded in 1825. This company commenced operations in 1826 with the Cambria, an immigrant ship, which was purchased for the sum of $50,000. 

A few years later, the colonial authorities on August 24, 1828 established a steamer service across the Demerara River. In 1838, ten years later, operations were expanded as the steamer Royal Victoria commenced operations between Georgetown, Essequibo and Berbice. The transportation route was soon extended to the island of Leguan when Lady Flora Hastings was contracted on August 12, 1841.

 Read more: Steamers of British Guiana

Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.


  • Rosaliene Bacchus  On May 2, 2014 at 1:40 am

    Another historical gem. Thanks, Dmitri. Loved the photos.

  • Dmitri Allicock  On May 11, 2014 at 8:26 pm

    Thanks Rosaliene.

  • malcolm heydorn  On May 14, 2014 at 2:48 am


    In December 1950, I recall taking my first trip on a river steamer, from Rosignol to New Amsterdam; that ship was the Lukanani, the smallest of them on that route , during the 50’s decade. During that decade, I subsequently travelled the same route, back and forth on the Lady Northcote, Pomeroon, Barima, Torani, and Canje Pheasant from time to time. Fond memories.

  • Dmitri Allicock  On May 29, 2014 at 6:55 pm

    So true Malcolm

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: