Southampton City Council50 Years of City Status Stay connected logo

Stay connected

Our free email alerts service will help keep you connected to the things that matter to you.

Choose from a range of topics including:
Events, leisure and culture, library offers and community news,
job alerts, road works, city news and more...

Enter your email address below to get started or to edit your account.


You are here:home > Leisure > Arts and Heritage > Family and local history > Maritime history > Sources for the history of warships and merchant shipping

Sources for the history of warships and merchant shipping

War and Warships
You can find out about the history and development of naval ships through the ages. You can find information about Admiral Lord Nelson's ships, Henry the Eighth's flagship, Mary Rose, ships of the Line, wooden fighting ships and modern warships. We have many historic directories of warships including Jane's Fighting Ships back to 1898 and other Jane's publications.

You can also discover some of the nations rich naval heritage by reading the official histories the two World Wars at sea and accounts of other famous sea battles. We have many books on the merchant navy at war, including Lloyd's War losses for both World Wars.

Merchant Shipping
The history of merchant shipping is well represented in the library with good collections of books on all types of shipping, including coastal shipping, paddle steamers, tugboats, tramp fleets and passenger ships and ferries.

There are books on shipbuilding, ship design, marine engineering, navigation and seamanship. Up to date books on shipping law, shipping economics and international maritime codes are also kept.
For those interested in yachting and sailing there are books on yacht design, motor ships, harbour guides and pilots and nautical almanacs.

Contact information