Wooden paddle steamer Solway built Grayson & Howson, Holyhead 1826
190nrt, 238grt, loa 140ft, lwl 133ft, beam 21.5ft, width 38ft, depth 9.5ft.
Engines by Boulton & Paul of London
Owned Carlisle and Liverpool Steam-ship Co.
Voyage Belfast to Solway, struck Dumroof Bank in foggy weather, then run ashore, 25 August 1842
Captain Thomas Burton, crew and about 200 passengers, all saved by boats taking them ashore.
A Ship canal was built in 1822 from a basin near Carlisle to the Solway Firth near Bowness. The seaward end became known as Port Carlisle. In 1826 two wooden paddle steamers, Solway and Cumberland were ordered to provide a service from Port Carlisle. They were built at Holyhead by Grayson & Howson, Grayson also having a shipyard at Liverpool. The vessels sailed to London to have their engines fitted by Boulton & Paul.
The arrival of Solway at Bowness in July 1826 is described in the local papers with great enthusiasm.
From Cumberland Pacquet, and Ware's Whitehaven Advertiser Tuesday 21 March 1826
The first of the steam-vessels intended to trade betwixt Liverpool and Carlisle, was launched at Holyhead on the 24th of last month [by Grayson & Howson]. She is named the Solway, and is pronounced a superior vessel of her class: her register about 250 tons, and her general equipment in the finest style; the accommodation for passengers being very complete. She proceeds for London as soon possible, there to receive her engines, which have been prepared by Bolton and Watt, and await her arrival in the Thames. As soon as complete, she will return northward, and take up her destined station. The commencement of steam navigation in the Solway Frith is an important era in the commerce of Cumberland.
After many years of trading to Solway ports and to Liverpool, Belfast and the Isle of Man, Solway ran aground in the approaches to the Solway Firth on Dumroof Bank. She was later beached on the northern shore where she became a total wreck.
Cumberland Pacquet, and Ware's Whitehaven Advertiser - Tuesday 31 August 1841
WRECK OF THE SOLWAY STEAMER We regret exceedingly to announce that early on Wednesday morning last this noble vessel, whilst on her way from Belfast to Carlisle, laden with cattle and horses, and having about two hundred passengers on board, struck upon Drumruff[Dumroof] Bar. owing to the foggy state of the weather.
She beat violently over the bank and made water so rapidly that the captain, in order to save the passengers, was obliged to run her ashore, near the mouth of the Nith[Southerness]. One hundred and fifty-six cattle were thrown overboard, and the passengers were, after some difficulty, safely landed in the boats. The vessel has sustained considerable damage, and though she still remains on the bank, hopes are entertained that, should the weather continue favourable, she may be got off and be prevented from becoming a total wreck. The Solway is the property of the Carlisle and Liverpool Steam-ship Company. Several thousand pounds had been spent upon her in the spring, in improvements.
The Solway had on board at the time of the accident about two hundred passengers in addition to her crew, but fortunately from the judicious steps taken by Captain Burton, and the exertions of his crew, all reached shore in safety. We understand that about 150 head of cattle were drowned.
There are various statements as to the number of cattle thrown overboard, and the number which perished in the hold, but we understand that, of the whole, only about 40 of the cattle reached the shore alive. Of the horses only one was lost. We have not learned that any of the cargo was insured. One respectable Irish dealer, named Jackson, has lost property to the amount of at least £1,000, having had 90 cattle on board, of which only five had been saved.
At first, considerable confusion prevailed from the number of Irish harvesters on board making their way to Cumberland; but as soon as possible they were conveyed in boats to where the water was shallow enough to admit of their wading. Assistance was soon procured from the shore, and a gentleman in the neighbourhood (whose name we could not learn) gave every accommodation to the ladies, among whom were the lady and daughter of Colonel Napier, who was also himself on board.
Cumberland Pacquet, and Ware's Whitehaven Advertiser - Tuesday 14 September 1841
The Solway Steamer is now a total wreck sunk to the gun-wales in water. A few things were got out of her, but the greater part of the machinery has been lost; and but faint hopes are entertained of recovering any more of the materials.
By 1842, Captain Thomas Burton was sailing in steamer Newcastle on the same route.