British Long Distance Mail Packets 1793-1815

By Colin Tabeart

500 + viii A4 pages. Hardbound. 

After 4 years of research this new study covers this uniquely British service in depth. Using it students should be able to ascertain what packet carried the cover under consideration in 95% of cases for the Falmouth packets, with about a 75% chance for the North Sea packets from Harwich or Yarmouth to Europe. They should also be able to work out why their cover was charged the British postage rate it was.

Each chapter covers a year of packet sailings across the North Sea from Harwich or Yarmouth, and the Falmouth packets to their various destinations. 

Read about: packets frozen in at Cuxhaven or Gottenburgh for up to 12 weeks; ice extending into the North Sea for miles beyond Heligoland; packets windbound in Falmouth for weeks on end. Read about the Harwich captain who deliberately shot one of his crew dead, was found guilty of manslaughter, and fined a shilling. Read about heroic defences against superior odds; about the packet ransomed from her captors by the passengers; of horrendous hurricanes, lightning strikes, and men washed overboard. Learn about the ravages of yellow fever in the West Indies, New York, Philadelphia etc, with packet crews decimated homebound. Read about the “quasi war” between the USA and France; Britain’s oldest ally, Portugal, declaring war on Britain. 

Hardbound in the Author’s usual format, and offered at the remarkably low price of £45 for a book of this size and complexity. The printing will be very limited so those interested are urged to put their orders in early. Books will be available from end June. Because of the size and weight regrettably packing and postage will be expensive. To save postage I can bring copies to: 

The Forces PHS Fair at Banstead, Surrey, on 10 August;

The Society of Postal Historians Meeting at Sherborne on 18 August.

To avoid disappointment in case the limited printing is sold out please order your copy in advance. I can accept: Payment by cheque drawn on a UK bank payable to C Tabeart; or Paypal to colintabeart@btinternet.com. If paying by Paypal please add £2 to cover the Paypal charges.

If paying by cheque please post this form with your cheque to: C Tabeart, 238 Hunts Pond Road, FAREHAM, PO14 4PG. If by Paypal please ensure Paypal supplies your correct postal address.

Screenshot 2019-11-15 at 11.12.53
Screenshot 2019-11-15 at 11.13.02
Screenshot 2019-11-15 at 11.18.05


© Forces Postal History Society 2020