George Nisbet & Co

georgenisbetandco
17th September 2005, 22:16
Hello.

I'm researching the history of George Nisbet & Co of Glasgow.
My wife's grandfather started the company and I am trying to piece
together a complete company history.

If anyone has any information I would be very interested to contact them
- especially ex crew or office staff. The ships names all started with "blair"
(eg Blairclova) apart from a few vessels that they managed during and post WW2.

Thanks,

Keith.

EBenarty
1st March 2006, 22:58
Keith,
I have dug up this site for you. I have heard of the company ,but cannot recollect.
http://www.clydesite.co.uk/clydebuilt/viewship.asp?id=20373

EBenarty
1st March 2006, 23:01
Keith,
Another one for you !!
<img src="http://www.clydesite.co.uk/clydebuilt/ships/1929/BLAIRSPEY_344.jpg">

EBenarty
1st March 2006, 23:10
http://www.hampshireflag.co.uk/world-flags/images/g/gb~s0995.gif

nigelcollett
2nd March 2006, 09:33
Hi Keith

In 1906 Nisbet, Calder formed the Clydesdale Navigation Co Ltd, In 1913 the company became George Nisbet & Co Ltd, During WWI they sold two of their vessels and the remaining vessel, the Blairhall 2549g/1899, was sunk by UC40. After the war they returned to shipowning. In 1924 the Nisbet Shipping Co Ltd was formed and the prefix "Blair..." formally adopted. By 1929 they owned 8 vessels in three companies. At the start of WWII they owned 9 vessel and were allocated a further 8 vessels by the M.o.W.T. Losses were heavy, 8 by enemy action and 2 by collision and 1 foundered.
The still had three vessels in 1955 but they were sold and the companies wound up in 1961.

Taken for; "British Ocean Tramps - Volume 2. Owners and their ships" by P N Thomas

Regards

NigelC

N.B. The Blairgowrie was "lost" in the Atlantic in 1935.

maritiem
7th October 2010, 18:00
Hallo Keith

Georg Nisbet and Calder formed Nisbet, Calder & Co. Ltd in 1905 and bought a second-hand tramp steamer. The Clydesdale Navigation Co. Ltd. was set up in 1906. A second ship was bought in 1907 and a third in 1909, when the managing company became George Nisbet & Co. Ltd. in 1915 another second hand ship was purchased from abroard and renamed BLAIRHALL followed that same year with another purchase. Three ships were sold just before and during World War 1 and the BLAIRHALL was a war loss.
George Nisbet & Co. resumed as shipowners in 1922 and in 1924 the Nisbet Shipping Co. Ltd. was formed. The business expanded and a third company, Northern Navigation Co. Ltd. was formed. By 1929 the fleet consisted of 10 ships; 4 owned by Clydesdale Navigation Co. Ltd., 3 by Nisbet Shipping Co. Ltd. and 3 by Northern Navigation Co. Ltd. Their main trading activity was from UK to Canada and the USA, but some voyages were undertaken to Russia, the Mediterranean and Australia.
Like all tramp owners Nisbet suffered during the Great Depression, but survived and at the start of World War 2 owned 9 vessels and another 8 were allocated to the company by the MOWT. Their losses were heavy; 8 by enemy action, 2 by collision and 1 ship foundered.
George Nisbet died during the war and the reins of the company were taken up by Douglas R. Nisbet and continued after the war, although by 1955 the fleet was down to 3 ships. These were sold in 1961 and the companies liquidated.

FLEETLIST


GREATHAM (1905-1917)
O.N. 97390 2,358g,
Triple expansion steam engine 88.4 x 11.6 metres
4.1890 completed by Wm. Gray & Co. Ltd., West Hartlepool Yard No. 382 as BUSSORA for T. Appleby & Co. 1891 renamed GREATHAM for Bucknall Nephews, London. 1905 purchased by Nisbet, Calder & Co. Ltd. 1917 sold to Combes, Marshall & Co., Middlesbrough. 22.1.1918 torpedoed and sunk near Dartmouth. (Grimsby-Blaye, coal). 7 crew members lost.

ETONA (1907-1914)
O.N. 98138 2,513g,
Triple expansion steam engine 90.5 x 12.2 metres
7.1890 completed by Richardson Duck & Co, Stockton Yard No. 374 as ETONA for Bucknall Nephews, London.1907 purchased by Clydesdale Navigation Co. Ltd. (Nisbet, Calder & Co. Ltd. mgrs). 1915 sold to Moji Kisen, Japan renamed BUZEN MARU. 1934 B/U Japan.

BENEDICK (1909-1914)
O.N. 98076 2,440g,
Triple expansion steam engine 91.4 x 11.9 metres
4.1890 completed by Bartram, Haswell & Co. Ltd, Sunderland Yard No. 142as BENEDICK for C.Howard & Sons. 1909 puurchased by George Nisbet & Co. Ltd. 1912 sold to G. Montefiore renamed PARTICIPATION. 1918 renamed PARTECIPATION 4.2.1918 torpedoed and sunk off Villajoyosa (Naples-Liverpool).

BLAIRHALL (1915-1918)
O.N. 137783 2,520,
Triple expansion steam engine 95.6 x 13.4 metres
11.1899 completed by A. Rodger & Co. Port Glasgow Yard No. 343 as HEROS for A/B Navigator (G.W. Snellman), Kristinestad. 1915 purchased by Clydesdale Navigation Co. (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.), Glasgow renamed BLAIRHALL. 26.7.1918 torpedoed and sunk by German submarine UC.40 off Sunderland on passage Middlesbrough for the Tyne in ballast.

BLAIRMORE (1915-1919)
O.N. 112434 3,028g,
Triple expansion steam engine 8 Knots 99.1 x 14.4 metres
2.1901 completed by Wm. Gray & Co. Ltd., West Hartlepool Yard No. 624 as MOUNTFIELDS for Doughty Shipping Co. Ltd., West Hartlepool. 1915 purchased by Clydesdale Navigation Co. (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.), Glasgow renamed BLAIRMORE. 1919 sold to Slobodna Plovidba Topic dd, Susak, Yugoslavia renamed ROSINA TOPIC. 1931 to Ilirija Dionicko Drustvo za Brodarstvo, Yugoslavia. 1933 sold to Huseyin Avni, Istanbul renamed ALTAY. 1960 B/U Kalafatyeri.

BLAIRADAM (1922-1936)
O.N. 146323 2,889g,
Triple expansion steam engine 9.5 Knots 97.6 x 14.2 metres
5.1914 completed by Wm. Gray & Co. Ltd., West Hartlepool Yard No. 838 as UBIER for Mercantile & Shipping Co.( Lloyd Royal Belge mgrs). 1922 purchased by Northern Nav. Co., Glasgow (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.), Glasgow renamed BLAIRADAM. 1936 sold to Rederi A/B Yrsa, Mariehamn, Finland renamed YRSA. 1961 scrapped.

BLAIRBEG (1) (1922-1930)
O.N. 119980 2,845g,
Triple expansion steam engine 9 Knots 96.8 x 14.2 metres
11.1905 completed by J. Blumer & Co., Sunderland Yard No. 187 as NORTHCLIFFE for Northcliffe S.S.Co. Ltd (Evans, Vyvyan), Cardiff. 1909 sold to Solleveld v.d. Meer & T.H. v. Hattum's Stoomvaart Maatschappij, Rotterdam renamed MOERDIJK. 1922 purchased by George Nisbet & Co. Ltd. renamed BLAIRBEG. 1930 sold to C.Jensen et al renamed VIZMA. 1945 renamed RunÝ. 28.12.1946 mined and sunk off Falsterbo.

BLAIRLOGIE (1) (1922-1936)
O.N. 146306 3,051g,
Triple expansion steam engine 99.1 x 14.4 metres
1912 completed by Rotterdamsche Droogdok Mij, Rotterdam Yard No. 30 as OOSTDIJK for Solleveld v.d. Meer & T.H. v. Hattum's Stoomvaart Maatschappij, Rotterdam. 1922 purchased by George Nisbet & Co. Ltd. renamed BLAIRLOGIE. 1936 sold to A. Ekbom renamed AGNES. 1.11.1942 torpedoed and sunk by Russian submarine SC.406.

BLAIRHOLM (1923-1933)
O.N. 120672 2,631g,
Triple expansion steam engine 9 Knots 95.4 x 13.9 metres
3.1906 completed by Blyth Shipbuilding & Drydocks Co. Ltd., Blyth Yard No. 126 as ALEKSANDER KAMBUROV for Northern SS Co. 1921 sold to MC de France renamed SAN GIACOMO. 1922 sold to Rechnitzer Thomsen renamed KORSHOLM. 1923 purchased by George Nisbet & Co. Ltd. renamed BLAIRHOLM. 1933 sold to A. Grozea renamed AURATAN. 1934 sold to Valsamakis & Co. renamed SF.NICOLAE. 1935 sold to T.L. Teryazos renamed ANNA T. 1947 sold to Kien Sing SN Co. renamed KIENSING. 28.2.1948 wrecked.

BLAIRCREE (1924-1925)
O.N. 120920 2,674g,
Triple expansion steam engine 8 Knots 95.7 x 14.2 metres
1906 completed by J.L. Thompson & Sons, Sunderland Yard No. 440 as DACRE HILL for W. Price & Co. 1915 seized by German Government renamed MARIE. 19 returned to her owners renamed DACRE HILL. 1924 purchased by George Nisbet & Co. Ltd. renamed BLAIRCREE. 1925 sold to Helmsing & Grimm renamed BALTMOR. B/U Latvia 1934.

BLAIRGOWRIE (1924-1935)
O.N. 147920 3,259g,
Triple expansion steam engine 225 nhp, 10 knots 103.1 x 14.8 metres
8.1924 completed by Napier & Miller Ltd., Glasgow Yard No.243 for Clydesdale Navigation Co. (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.). 26.2.1935 the BLAIRGOWRIE was on a voyage from Swansea to Boston and got into difficulties in the Atlantic. ss BEAVERDALE passed a message to the shore station at Valentia stating her position and that the cargo ship's steering had gone and her 1 and 2 hatches were stoved in. Later the North German Lloyd liner EUROPA reported she was steaming towards the location of the stricken vessel, but in the teeth of a violent gale. Then another message came from BLAIRGOWRIE saying "Situation desperate. No steering gear. Hold full of water." In huge seas a search was made by EUROPA, AMERICAN BANKER and the Dutch steamer BLOMMERSDIJK, but BLAIRGOWRIE was lost, going down with her full crew of 26.

BLAIRESK (1925-1952)
O.N. 148841 3,320g, 5,675dwt.
Triple expansion steam engine 3cyl. 1500ihp by D. Rowan & Co. Ltd. Glasgow 10 knots 103.7 x 14.7 metres
3.1925 completed by Napier & Miller Ltd., Glasgow Yard No.246 for Northern Navigation Co. Ltd (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.). 1952 sold to Rud. Christ. Gribel Lubeck renamed EDDI. 1954 sold to Liberian Steamship Corp.( H.P.M. Krapp mgr), Liberia renamed EDDY. 1961 sold to San Gabrielle Corp. (N. Guida mgr), Liberia renamed SAN GABRIELLE. 1963 sold to San Gabrielle Corp. Lebanon. 1970 B/U Savona.

BLAIRATHOLL (1925-1942)
O.N. 148875 3,319g, 5,620 dwt.
Triple expansion steam engine 3cyl. 1500ihp by D. Rowan & Co. Ltd. Glasgow 9 knots 103.7 x 14.7 metres
9.1925 completed by Napier & Miller Ltd., Glasgow Yard No.252 for Nisbet Shipping Co. Ltd. (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.). 26.11.1942 sunk in collision with Norwegian ship JOHN BAKKE.

BLAIRDEVON (1925-1956)
O.N. 147946 3,282g, 5,630dwt
Triple expansion steam engine 3cyl. 1500ihp by D. Rowan & Co. Ltd. Glasgow 9 knots 103.7 x 14.7 metres
1925 completed by Napier & Miller Ltd., Glasgow Yard No.244 for Nisbet Shipping Co. Ltd. (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.). 1956 sold to Pan Ocean Nav. Co. SA (P.J. Angouras mgr) , Panama renamed JENNIFER JANE. 1959 renamed DOROTHEA. 1970 B/U Karachi.

BLAIRMORE (1928-1940)
O.N. 160219 4,141g,
Triple expansion steam engine 11 Knots 113.3 x 15.6 metres
8.1928 completed by Ayrshire Dockyard Co. Ltd., Irvine Yard No. 515 for Clydesdale Navigation Co. Ltd. (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.). 24.8.1940 torpedoed and damaged by German submarine U.37 with the loss of 4 crew members. Sank following day.

BLAIRSPEY (1929-1940) (1946-1961)
O.N. 161892 4,155g, 6,800dwt.
Triple expansion steam engine 9.5 Knots 113.3 x 15.6 metres
10.1929 completed by Ardrossan Dockyard & Shipbuilding Co Ltd, Ardrossan Yard No. 344 for Northern Navigation Co. Ltd (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.). On the outbreak of the Second World War she was used to carry important war material to the United Kingdom. Her first convoy was SC-7, which sailed from Sydney, Nova Scotia on 5 October 1940. She sailed from Rimouski, Quebec to join the convoy at Sydney, carrying a cargo of timber. Having crossed the North Atlantic it was intended that she would continue on to Grangemouth.18.10.1940 torpedoed off Ireland and lost her bow, towed to Liverpool and taken over by the Ministry of War Transport 1942 rebuilt with new forepart renamed EMPIRE SPEY for MOWT (managed by G.Nisbet & Co.). 1946 returned to owners renamed BLAIRSPEY. 1961 sold to Marfuente Cia.Nav.S.A.( J.P. Hadoulis), Panama renamed EVANDROS. 1967 B/U Spezia.

BLAIRNEVIS (1930-1945)
O.N. 161901 4,155g, 6,800dwt
Triple expansion steam engine 9.5 Knots 113.3 x 15.6 metres
2.1930 completed by Ardrossan Dockyard & Shipbuilding Co Ltd, Ardrossan Yard No. 345 for Nisbet Shipping Co. Ltd. (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.). On the 24th November off the Hearty Knoll, Cromer the Blairnevis was attacked and damaged by a German E-boat and was beached at Great Yarmouth without loss of life. The ship was refloated in December of the same year and towed to London for repairs. 13.2.1945 involved in collision with the Canadian Frigate HMCS Orkney and had to be beached in the Mersey and became a total loss.

BLAIRBEG (2) (1932-1940)
O.N. 139197 3,509g 6,025dwt.
Triple expansion steam engine 108.6 x 14.8 metres
2.1917 completed by J. Blumer & Co., Sunderland Yard No. 238 as CLIFFTOWER for Hansen Bros.
1925 sold to W.A. Young & Co. renamed WYNBURN 1932 purchased by Clydesdale Navigation Co. Ltd. (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.) renamed BLAIRBEG. 1940 sold to Connell & Grace renamed FELLSIDE. 17.7.1940 torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U.43. 12 crew members lost.

BLAIRANGUS (1934-1940)
O.N. 148318 4,409g, 7,825dwt
Triple expansion steam engine 125.9 x 15.9 metres
2.1930 completed by Craig, Taylor & Co., Stockton on Tees Yard no. 227 as PORTREGIS for W.E. Hinde & Co. 1934 purchased by Clydesdale Navigation Co. Ltd. (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.) renamed BLAIRANGUS. 21.9.1940 torpedoed and sunk by German submarine U.48. 7 crew members lost.


BLAIRLOGIE (2) (1936-1939)
O.N. 148310 4,425g, 7,825dwt
Triple expansion steam engine 125.9 x 15.9 metres
10.1929 completed by Craig, Taylor & Co., Stockton on Tees Yard no. 225 as PORTFIELD for W.E. Hinde & Co. 1935 renamed GROVEDENE. 1936 purchased by Clydesdale Navigation Co. Ltd. (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.) renamed BLAIRLOGIE. 11.9.1939 torpedoed and shelled by German submarine U.30, abandoned and sank.

BLAIRCLOVA (1939-1961)
O.N. 165762 5,083g 9,050dwt
Triple expansion steam engine 11 Knots
1938 completed by J. Readhead & Sons Ltd., South Shields Yard No. 512 as SUTHERLAND for B.J. Sutherland & Co., Newcastle upon Tyne. 1939 purchased by Clydesdale Navigation Co. Ltd. (George Nisbet & Co. Ltd.) renamed BLAIRCLOVA. 1961 sold to T.Y. Chao renamed OCEAN VENTURE. 1.9.1962 wrecked north side Harbour Island, Tolo, Hong Kong.

tigercub33
10th February 2011, 16:47
Hi Keith ,i left the vindi on friday13th july ,jioned the blairspey on saturday 14th july as a catering boy at Northfleet Paper Mills, done three trips in her,to Seven Isles in Canada, loading pulp most of the deck cargo was washed overboard on the trip home, i cant be quiet sure but i think it was either the Queen Mary, or the Queen Elizabeth, passed us three times on the last outward trip that i made in her , with a message, Keep Going Blairspey You Will Make It. that last trip the outward voyage was rough as the best she could do was two knots backwards, looking at my discharge book the captains name looks like G.W.Grant and i signed off her 30 november 56,then jioned the M.V.Llandaff a week later p.s.the meat fridge was along side No 3 hold and down six rungs on a ladder trying to get any thing large out was a nightmare. tigercub33

Billieboy
10th February 2011, 18:46
Hey Tigercub33! Yet another Radcliffe's man?

Don Matheson
11th February 2011, 20:13
For some reason no one could ever explain, my school in Glasgow had a shipbuilders model of the Blairspey on display.
It was the best part of the day, nipping out for another look at some part of the ship.
Wonder what would happen to such a model?

Don

MacUalraig
18th February 2011, 08:42
Hello Keith

George Nisbet was the first owner of my yacht Stroma, launched in 1929 and I would be fascinated to know more about him. If you can share anything please let me know, either in this topic or by a private message. I blog about these yachts on www.scottishislandsclass.blogspot.com

Best wishes

Ewan

ibydit
28th February 2011, 15:58
Keith

Strangely I am following/producing the family tree of George would you like it?

ibydit@hotmail.com

regards

M Nisbet

Donald McGhee
2nd May 2012, 03:25
Researching the Blair boats I came across this thread. My Father, Harry McGhee was apprenticed to Nisbets in 1932 and his first discharge entry was for the Blairatholl as 3rd mate in 1937. He stayed with Nisbets as 3rd mate until the outbreak of war, then sailed on the Scottish Monarch, Albert Le Borgne, Dixcove, Adda and Calabar (some of which were torpedoed, lost) mainly as 2nd Mate, before transferring to the Nigerian Marine in 1942, where he was commissioned Lieutenant in the Nigerian naval Defence Force.
An interesting company Nisbets. Can anyone tell me the funnel colours etc, as I am a water colour painter and want to paint the Blairatholl, but she is in black and white?

maritiem
2nd May 2012, 06:16
Hallo Donald
Funnel Geo Nisbet & Co. black with small white band and Northern Navigation Co. Ltd Red funnel with white band and black top
Regards

oceantramp
2nd May 2012, 19:21
There ia a short history of the CLYDESDALE NAVIGATION CO. LTD. (GEORGE NISBET & CO) in Travels of the Tramps Volume 2 by Norman L. Middlemiss

raybroad
6th January 2013, 16:37
hello keith i sailed on the s.s. blairdevon in 1955. triple expansion coalburner with chain steering. the chief engineer was mckensie the second engineer was croll from paisley who had been superintendent engineer for nisbet in the past. no love was lost between them. i was 4/engineer then. if i remember there was a sail up forrard which could be used for better steerage. nisbet office was in sauchihall street glasgow,apart from myself 3/mate chief and second engineer the rest of the crew including the captain were highlandmen.