Quaker Studies

Nantucket Quakers and the Milford Haven Whaling Industry, C. 1791–1821*

Quaker Studies (2010), 15, (1), 6–31.

Abstract

The advent of the American War of Independence not only saw a shift in mid-Atlantic politics but also occasioned a transformation in the economic networks that had existed from the opening up of the American colonies in the seventeenth century. One particular community affected by these tensions was the Nantucket Quaker-whalers whose determination to carry on their trade while attempting to maintain neutrality led to sequestration of their goods and ships, occupation of the homes and ultimately a repositioning of their industry. This article explains the reasons for their migration, the protracted negotiations with the British government and the eventual settlement of a number of the Quaker-whalers at Milford Haven in west Wales. It also explores the central roles of Sir William Hamilton, Sir Charles Greville, William Rotch Snr and his decision to briefly relocate his business in France as well as the personal experiences of Rotch, his daughter-in-law, Elizabeth, the diarist, Abiel Folger and the other settlers at Milford.

Nantucket Quakers and the Milford Haven Whaling Industry, C. 1791–1821*

Abstract

The advent of the American War of Independence not only saw a shift in mid-Atlantic politics but also occasioned a transformation in the economic networks that had existed from the opening up of the American colonies in the seventeenth century. One particular community affected by these tensions was the Nantucket Quaker-whalers whose determination to carry on their trade while attempting to maintain neutrality led to sequestration of their goods and ships, occupation of the homes and ultimately a repositioning of their industry. This article explains the reasons for their migration, the protracted negotiations with the British government and the eventual settlement of a number of the Quaker-whalers at Milford Haven in west Wales. It also explores the central roles of Sir William Hamilton, Sir Charles Greville, William Rotch Snr and his decision to briefly relocate his business in France as well as the personal experiences of Rotch, his daughter-in-law, Elizabeth, the diarist, Abiel Folger and the other settlers at Milford.


Details

Author details

Allen, Richard C.