The Clyde Training Ship 'Cumberland'

Contributed by Robert Pool

The Clyde Training Ship 'Cumberland'

A 1873 character reference letter from the Captain of the Clyde Industrial Training Ship 'Cumberland'. The purpose of this vessels was 'to provide care for homeless young boys, petty offenders, truants, etc' mainly from the Glasgow area. Life was strict aboard the training ship but many hundreds of boys left with skills and discipline that prepared them for life in the Royal and Merchant Navy. A good character reference letter went a long way to securing employment when their time was finished on the 'Cumberland'. Some boys clearly did not enjoy their time on board and in 1889 some of the boys set fire to the ship and destroyed it; it was soon replaced by the 'HMS Revenge' which was renamed the Clyde Training ship 'Empress'. Property of Robert Pool

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