I found a website that gave full names of passengers lost at sea, including Childrens' names. I know that James John and Arabella Fitz-james were lost at sea on the sinking of the steam mail ship Solway in April 1843 but want the names of their four children who were also lost. can anybody help?

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    Welcome to G&FH SE! As a new user be sure to take the Tour to learn about our focussed Q&A format which is quite different from bulletin boards, discussion forums and other Q&A sites you may be used to. Where was the Solway travelling from and to?
    – PolyGeo
    Mar 18, 2018 at 23:50
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    Is this the website that you found? trove.nla.gov.au/newspaper/article/12410847
    – PolyGeo
    Mar 18, 2018 at 23:51
  • It seems that the Solway left Falmouth on 3 Apr 1843. Have you found the Fitz(-)james family in the 1841 Census?
    – PolyGeo
    Mar 18, 2018 at 23:55
  • Thank you for your responses. I know most of what you provided. I have their Wills. Not all of their children were on board. My gt grandfather wasn't. He was only two years old at the time of the disaster. I found a website which stated it named all the children on board and I cannot find it again. thank you for your assistance Mar 21, 2018 at 0:08

2 Answers 2


James Fitz James is listed in FindMyPast's Index to Death Duty Registers with a note "Ship Solway to Jamaica"

Arabella Theresa Fitz-James is listed in FindMyPast's Index to Death Duty Registers, a few rows below her husband, as being "Late on board the Solway Steam Ship".

The Executor for both is Judith Farmer of Peckham Grove, Worcester.

Perhaps they can be located near there in the 1841 Census, along with the names of 3-4 children whose births/baptisms can be found around the same time.

FindMyPast's Faculty Office Marriage Licences lists a licence for James John FITZJAMES and Arabella Theresa OFFLEY dated 12 Nov 1832.

The "Will of Arabella Theresa Fitz James otherwise Arabella Fitz James of Hornsey , Middlesex" is available as PROB 11/1984/16. I would expect that this might name at least some of her children.


I don't know if this is of much help, but want to share this. I was doing research on the sinking of the Lusitania recently and one article stated that the Cunard shipping lines did not list infants (usually 1 year or less) on the passenger list since it was not required to pay passage or landing tax for infants. This seemed to be a practice with many of the shipping companies during the 1800's into the 1900's.

That discovery solved a long-time mystery for me. My great-uncle, born in Ireland in 1870 immigrated to the U.S. with his parents within the first year of his birth. When I found my great-grandparents on a passenger list, their child was not listed. I did locate him on the first U.S. census they were counted in during for 1880, so I know he arrived with his parents.

Possibly if any of the Fitz James children were infants, they might not be listed on the Solway passenger list.

  • Excellent point! Always follow the money. If you happen to find the article again, you can add it to your answer using the edit link under your answer.
    – Jan Murphy
    Mar 21, 2018 at 19:50

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