Admiralty fonds [textual record (chiefly microform), cartographic material] [Great Britain]
Notice descriptive – Brève
Admiralty fonds [textual record (chiefly microform), cartographic material] [Great Britain]
- Niveau hiérarchique :
- Date :
- 1677, 1689-1996.
- Référence :
- R11630-0-0-E, MG12-ADM
- Genre de documents :
- Documents textuels
- Trouvé dans :
- Archives / Collections et fonds
- No d’identification :
- Lien vers cette page :
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- Contexte de cette notice :
Notice descriptive – Détails
- Fonds comprend :
31 description(s) de niveau inférieurVoir description(s) de niveau inférieur
- Date(s) :
- 1677, 1689-1996.
- Lieu de création :
- Étendue :
518 microfilm reels mostly negative and positive.
27.794 m of textual records transcripts and photocopies.
- Langue du document :
- Langue du document additionnelle :
- anglais, français
- Portée et contenu :
The Admiralty records document British exploration and expansion overseas as well as the naval side of the growth and defence of the British Empire. The role of the Royal Navy in the development and defence of British North America is also documented.
The Admiralty fonds is composed of records generated by the Board of Admiralty, the Navy Board, the Transport Office and the Harbour Department, the Board for Sick and Wounded Seamen, the Royal Marine Office and Marine Pay Office, the Greenwich Hospital etc., and the antecedents and successors of these and other authorities concerned with the administration of naval affairs. The Admiralty records are organized into several hundred numbered classes of records and the foundation of the system is the Admiralty as reorganized after 1832.
The National Archives has copied those classes or selections of classes which pertain to the administration of naval affairs in the colonies in North America and the Dominion, from the seventeenth to the early twentieth centuries, with an emphasis on the British North American colonial period. Acquired as transcripts, photocopies or microfilm, this material is available on microfilm. Reel numbers are identified at lower levels of description or in the finding aid.
Types of documentation include, for example: despatches and correspondence letterbooks, reports and memoranda; orders and instructions, subject files, lists such as pension lists and lists of officers and men, returns of officers' services, ships, and personnel; contingent accounts, registers and indexes, journals and ships' logbooks, medical journals, pay books, ships' muster books and proclamations.
- Provenance :
- Biographie/Histoire administrative :
Great Britain. Admiralty : From the late seventeenth century until the reforms in naval administration of 1832, the system of directing and managing British naval affairs involved more than a dozen different departments and offices. The system was headed by the Admiralty Board with its secretary, followed by the Navy Board with its four principal officers, and a series of lesser boards and offices which had grown out of the two main boards. These subordinate departments included the Treasurer's Office, the Navy Pay Office, the Victualling Board, the Board of Transport Service, the Board for Sick and Wounded Seamen, the Prize Office, the Rendezvous Office, the Board of Longitude, the Royal Naval Academy at Portsmouth and Greenwich Hospital. General direction was provided by the Lord High Admiral and the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty with their secretary. The Board of Admiralty implemented the government's policies, including the movement of ships. To facilitate naval business, the Admiralty Board was in frequent communication with the Navy Board as well as with other subordinate departments on a variety of matters including convoys, manpower, transport and supplies. The Board also corresponded with other government offices including the Secretary of State, the Treasury, the Commissioners of the Customs, the General Post Office, the Secretary at War, and the Ordnance Office. The Colonial Office provided the Admiralty with valuable information while the Admiralty in its turn provided the means of enforcing regulations and of transporting officials and communications. The Navy Board, while older than the Admiralty Board and theoretically superior in prestige to the numerous subordinate departments, could not, as a rule, deal directly with any other office. Its communications usually had to be directed through the Admiralty Board. The Navy Board did, however, have responsibility for much business relating to the navy. The most significant reform in naval administration came in 1832 when the First Lord of the Admiralty, Sir James Graham, abolished the Navy Board and the Victualling Board and created five departments headed by: the Surveyor of the Navy, the Accountant General, the Storekeeper General, the Controller of Victualling and Transport Services, and the Physician General. The whole system was coordinated by the Admiralty Board whose membership varied from six to twelve including the First Lord of the Admiralty, one or more civil lords and a parliamentary secretary. All these members served for limited terms and continuity was provided by a permanent secretary. Despite refinements there were no further major reforms in the administration of the navy until 1963 when the Admiralty Board disappeared. The Queen became Lord High Admiral with effective direction of the Royal Navy handed to the Minister of Defence. The Royal Navy was the cornerstone of the British colonial system. However, to protect British interests in North America it was not normally considered necessary for the Royal Navy to maintain a large force in American waters. The security of the colonies and the fisheries rested on the preservation of the command of the sea, the key to which was control of the western approaches. So long as the Royal Navy controlled the English Channel, the Bay of Biscay, and the Straits of Gibraltar, British interests were in little danger from the French, the principal rivals of the British in North America. The North American station, which included divisions for Newfoundland, Halifax, Bermuda, Barbadoes and Jamaica, generally had few ships to protect the Newfoundland fisheries, the Atlantic seaboard of North America, and the West Indian islands. Small forces only were assigned to the North American station. The stationing of ships in the waters of the northwestern Atlantic meant that officers and seamen of the Royal Navy had frequent contact with North America. For most of the eighteenth century and all of the nineteenth century, Halifax was the headquarters for a division of the North America and West Indies station and St. John's performed the same function for another, virtually autonomous part of the station. In these centres, the Royal Navy had a wide variety of contacts with the colony and the local population with the result that information was sent back to London about all aspects of life there. Similar work by the Royal Navy, in peace and war, was undertaken in other areas: on the St. Lawrence River and Great Lakes under the Commander-in-Chief, North America and West Indies station; and off the coast of present-day British Columbia, under the Commander-in-Chief, Pacific station, where Esquimalt became the important naval base. Even before the advent of a separate station for the Pacific, the Royal Navy touched the western coast of North America through the endeavours of such officers as Captain James Cook and Captain George Vancouver, whose exploration in the Pacific brought them to the waters of British Columbia in the late eighteenth century. With the expansion of British and American trading companies in the nineteenth century, the Royal Navy protected British commercial interests and territorial claims in British Columbia. Under men such as Sir John Barrow, Secretary to the Board of Admiralty, 1804-1845, the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty engaged in Arctic exploration to discover the northwest passage. The first Arctic expedition sent by the Admiralty was commanded by Christopher Middleton and William Moor who searched unsuccessfully for the northwest passage in 1741-1742. This started a long line of Admiralty initiated expeditions which climaxed in the middle of the nineteenth century with the last and tragic voyage of Sir John Franklin in 1845 followed by the numerous expeditions sent to solve the mystery of his expedition's disappearance. A map of the Canadian Arctic testifies to the part played by the Admiralty and the Royal Navy in Arctic exploration.
- Instrument de recherche :
(Papier) Most finding aids are described at lower levels of description.(Papier) A major source of information about the Admiralty records copied from the Public Record Office is the General Inventory, Manuscripts, Volume 2, MG11-MG16, Ottawa, 1976.
- Information additionnelle :
- Note générale :
- The microfilm of original documents of the Admiralty are located on "B" microfilm reels; transcripts are located on "C" microfilm reels. Microfilm reels are available for consultation through the inter-institutional loan service offered by the National Archives of Canada. Information about our microfilm loan service may be found on the website of the Archives. Loans must be requested by institutions participating in the loan service on behalf of their patrons and must specify the microfilm reel numbers required.
- Historique de la conservation :
- The National Archives of Canada began the transcription of a limited number of Admiralty papers in 1907, concentrating initially on specific items of interest to Canadian scholars. Reproductions in the form of transcripts, photocopies and microfilm were acquired from the Public Record Office until 1992. After 1950 an extensive and continuing microfilming programme was undertaken to acquire copies of many of the most important Admiralty records relating to Canada.
- Note sur le classement :
The Admiralty records are organized into more than 150 numbered classes, apparently with the intention of retaining the basic principles of the original order as far as possible. Consequently, there are several separate numbered classes for each of the subsidiary departments, often under the headings: In-Letters, Out-Letters, Minutes, Accounts, Registers, and Miscellanea (e.g., ADM 2, Admiralty and Secretariat: Out-Letters; ADM 104, Medical Departments: Registers, Various; and ADM 49, Accounting Departments: Miscellanea, Various). Usually the records of an earlier quasi-independent board are included with those of the department which superseded it. The Navy Board is an exception: some if its papers ended up under Accountant General, but most can be found in one class, ADM 106, Navy Board Records, which includes separate series for In-Letters, Out-Letters, Minutes, Registers, Miscellanea, and Passing Certificates. The nature of the Royal Navy and its administration necessitated other exceptions, notably in the case of log books and station records (e.g., ADM 51, Captains' Logs and ADM 128, Station Records: North America and West Indies, Correspondence, Etc.), Within classes or within individual volumes there are few common principles of arrangement. The most usual order for in and out-letters is, however, chronological, by correspondents, or some combination of the two. Some classes, such as those containing log books, are arranged according to the names of ships. Perceptible variations from these approaches, where readily discernible, are noted in the descriptions of the relevant classes.
- Note de citation/référence :
- A major source of information regarding the classes which compose the Admiralty records is: Current Guide, produced by the Public Record Office, London, England, in a number of separate editions, on microfiche.
- Note sur la citation préféree :
- Cite as: National Archives of Canada (hereafter NA), Manuscript Group 12 (hereafter MG 12), Admiralty. A citation for a specific microfilm reel would be, for example, MG 12, ADM 1/1503, microfilm reel B-2607.
- Note sur l'emplacement des originaux :
- The originals are located in the Public Record Office, London, England.
- Note sur la langue :
- Most records are written in the English language. However, a small number of records are in the French language.
- Note sur les autres formats physiques disponibles :
- The transcripts are available on microfilm.
- Groupes de documents reliés :
There are numerous fonds which overlap or complement the Admiralty fonds. Records of the Colonial Office (MG 11) and the War Office (MG 13) are among the records copied from the Public Record Office, London, that complement the Admiralty records (MG 12). Records of the Governor General's Office (RG 7) and British Military and Naval Records (RG 8) both contain documents relating to naval questions in British North America., In addition, the private papers of politicians, civil servants, and naval personnel frequently include letters to and from naval offices in Britain, as well as other documents of interest to naval historians. Such fonds or collections can be found in the copied records of the British Library (MG 21); Pre-Conquest papers (MG 18); Late Eighteenth Century Papers (MG 23); Nineteenth Century Pre-Confederation Papers (MG 24); Prime Ministers' Papers (MG 26); and archival papers classified in MGs 29 and 30., Because of the particular interest of naval officers in surveying, researchers are also directed to the Map collection of the National Archives of Canada.
- Source :
- Ancien no de référence archivistique :
Pour réserver ou acheter des documents
- Conditions d'accès :
- Modalités d'utilisation :
Textual records: Transcripts may only be consulted on microfilm. Reel numbers for the transcripts are identified at lower levels of description.
Textual records: There are no restrictions on the consultation of the microfilms of original documents. Requests for photocopies for research purposes are permitted. However, requests for photocopies, photographs, etc., for the purpose of publication or exhibition must be directed to the Public Record Office, Ruskin Avenue, Kew, Richmond, Surrey TW9 4DU, England.
- Date de modification :