(HIST035) The Lost World of the Sailing Ships 1780-1880

Sailing Ship John C MunroTyco99  CC BY-SA 4.0 


Course start date: To be confirmed
Course end date: To be confirmed
Price: £150 

Tutor: Dr Helen Doe
Course Code: HIST035
Level: Non-accredited, non-credit bearing
Assessments/Exams: None. Throughout the course you will be given ideas and questions to respond to in the online discussion area. Participation in online discussion is encouraged, but not compulsory.
Duration: 10 weeks
Estimated Student Study Time: 2 – 4 hours per week are recommended, but time spent is flexible and at your discretion.
Fee: £150.00
Pre-Requisite Course(s): None
Delivery: Online Distance Learning
Late Entrants: If this course is not full by the start date then late entrants will be accepted for up to two weeks after the start of the course. As a late entrant you can choose to catch up on the material you have missed or you can skip the missed weeks and concentrate on the material at the point where you join the course, but unfortunately we cannot offer fee reductions or course extensions for late entrants.

This course was previously taught by Dr Helen Doe when it was offered by the University of Exeter*. Although some material will be the same, it has been comprehensively rewritten with more examples and new research.


“I found the subject and breadth of the course really interesting. It also gave me the incentive to delve more deeply into the history of some of the smaller ports and harbours with which I am already familiar. This has already uncovered some family heritage and background about which I was completely unaware. Thoroughly recommended. ” – Peter, April 2021.

“The course added further aspects and resources to my family research. I started the course because of my family history and wanted to know more about their life and work in the docks and ports. The material and resources provided throughout the course were excellent and helped a great deal with my research. It was also good to add your own bits of research and input. Helen Doe, the course tutor is extremely knowledgeable about all aspects of maritime history and will gladly help with any questions you might have. I can happily recommend this course to anyone with any interest in maritime Britain.” – Marion, April 2021.

Syllabus Plan

Week 1: Introduction to the Nineteenth-Century Maritime Economy

Week 2: Maritime Communities: Structures, Changes and Influences

Week 3: Ships and Trades

Week 4: Shipbuilding: The Business of Shipbuilding, Men and Materials

Week 5: Ancillary Trades: Sailmakers, Blockmakers, Ropemakers and Brokers

Week 6: Mariners: Education, Conditions and Career

Week 7: Investors: Who They Were and How They Made Profits

Week 8: Ship Management

Week 9: The Role of Women in the Maritime World

Week 10: Ports: Definitions, Facilities, and Their Rise and Fall