WWII Merchant Ship "Chipawian" ???????

Adrian Ballard
24th January 2006, 14:06
What a great Site !!

Trying to trace my uncle's family History. Thomas Ballard.

Apparently he was a Captain on a Merchant Ship During the 2nd WW in England, and was in the Suez Canal duriing WWII.

Family legend has it that this ship was called "Chipawian" but I cant seen to find a reference for it, maybe I am spelling the name wrong, if anybody knows this Ship or one of a similar name could you please let me know

Adrian Ballard

24th January 2006, 14:15
Welcome Adrian to the site, somebody will come up with some sort of an answer, thats for sure.

Baltic Wal
24th January 2006, 17:00
Adrian, There was a CHIPPEWA PARK built in 1943, too many end in IAN to make a simple search but certainly none similaqr to your request.

Bruce Carson
24th January 2006, 17:24
There was a 'Fort Chipewyan', a wartime standard "North Sands" type, built in 1942 by West Coast Shipbuilders, Vancouver, and managed by Idwal Williams & Co., Cardiff for the MOWT.
Laid up in 1947 in the US and sold two years later to Indian owners and named 'Bharatraja'.
Broken up at Bombay in 1962.
7,136GT, 439.5' x 57', single screw, 3exp (24 1/2" x 37" x 70" by 48" stroke).

Adrian, welcome to the site.
I hope you have as much enjoyment here as most of us do.

Bruce C.

24th January 2006, 18:09
All surviving British Merchant Navy records from WWII are held at The National Archive in Kew. Depending on what year the person left the M.N. will depend on which files their records are kept. This will list the names of all the ships he served on.

1913 to 1940 Fourth Register of Merchant Seaman's Service. Classifications BT 364. Register of Seaman, Combined Numerical Index (CR1, CR2, & CR10). Microfiche of these three index series are held in the following classes BT 348: Register of Seaman, Central Index, Numerical Series (CR2), BT 349: Register of Seaman, Central Index, Alphabetical Series (CR1) and BT 350: Register of Seaman,Special Index, Alphabetical Series (CR10). (Source of ref. Records of Merchant Shipping & Seamen, PRO Readers Guide No. 20).

1941-1972 Fifth Register of Merchant Seaman's Service. These records are held at the TNA in classification BT 382. These records are held in alphabetical surname order. (Source of ref. MCA Information Leaflet and Historical Records).

The National Archive,
TW9 4DU,
Tel. 020 8876 3444.

Do you have his date of birth or Discharge Book No. as I can search for certain files online. You cannot view the files online, but I will be able to tell you file you need to access at the TNA if you decide to visit or order online.

Adrian Ballard
24th January 2006, 22:36
Thanks everybody for your welcome and responses, all appreciated !

Do you have his date of birth or Discharge Book No. as I can search for certain files online. You cannot view the files online, but I will be able to tell you file you need to access at the TNA if you decide to visit or order online.

He was born sometime between 1904 and 1924

sorry to be so vague on dates, this is the 3rd family of my grandfather i am researching. lol


25th January 2006, 11:09
Hello Adrian,

It depends on what lengths you are prepared to go to trace his records. Your best bet is to go with the Fourth & Fifth Register which I mentioned in my earlier posting. Without a Dis. A No. or date of birth it is hard to find anything on the TNA online database.

There is 1 copy of a "Seaman's Pouch" for this man 1108618 BALLARD T P 09/04/1908 WEST HAM in BT 372/2973/83. These pouches don't contain full service records but hold certain documents like ID cards.

Also if he served during the war, certain medal files can be downloaded from the TNA database for a cost of 3.50. I found one Thomas Ballard online. Ballard, Thomas W R235524 25 June 1909 BT 395/1. If you click on the link below it will take you to the BT file and then it's up to you if you wish to download to see if this is him. These files normally contain an address of the individual which maybe known to you or a family member.


Once again your best would be a visit to the TNA and the Fourth & Fifth Register.

Adrian Ballard
26th January 2006, 13:28
Thanks Billy,
I will follow this up..

Thanks for your help and advise


Adrian Ballard
31st March 2006, 17:15
Hi Billy,

I have done some further research and found that..

Thomas W Ballard, 25 June 1909, London, R235524. 132191.

Is the man I am researching, I have downloaded his medal details as follows and claimed

1939 (1939-1945 Star)
AT (Atlantic Star)
AF (Africa Star)
(WM) (War Medal)
CL (Clasp)

I am planning a trip to KEW next week, what should I go for I understand that pouches may even contain a picture

31st March 2006, 21:56
Hi Adrian,

Check this thread: http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/showthread.php?t=4825

There are some links to where you can get more information that may help you to prepare for your trip to Kew.

I would appreciate a personal message about your experiences as I hope to visit the place myself at some future date.



Adrian Ballard
2nd April 2006, 14:44
Cheers Brian,
Will do..........