Sunday, May 17, 2009


Several weeks ago I posted the company flag for Grinnell & Minturn's Red Swallowtail shipping line, the company that operated the packet ship, London, on which my great great great grandparents sailed the London to New York leg of their 1855 emigration from East Brandenburg in Prussia to Wisconsin.

A recent visitor to my blog found my post through a Google search for the terms "Grinnell & Minturn swallowtail line". The visitor didn't post a comment or send me an e-mail, but there was no real need to do so. Sitemeter records the URL for the sites from which my blogpost is accessed and in Google's case the search terms the visitor used. One of the search results listed on that page was a webpage headed Ship Yorktown, which is one of a number of pages that are part of the Forster Family Genealogy website.

It seems the first Forsters to come to America in their line arrived on the Yorktown in 1852. The Forsters weren't able to locate a portrait of the Yorktown, but they were able to find a painting of her sister ship, the London, built by Webb & Company at the same time and in the same location at the East River shipyards in New York. The two ships, according to their webpage, were identical in all but a few small details.

If you look carefully at the painting of the London you can see the Red Swallowtail colors flying from the top of the mainmast. You can see it up close if you click your mouse once on the picture.


Unknown said...

Thanks for this post -- it's exactly what I was looking for! My great, great, great grandparents also did the London to New York leg in 1855, immigrating from Baden-Wurttemberg. I'm not able to find much else on the clipper ship London -- do you have any more info or photos?

stu said...

Send Kirby your email, please...