Previously…

 Herring heist 

The Jolly Roger flag with a cats skullSeafurrer Bart shares a tallish tale of enterprising Chelsea pier “pirate” cats, Tumtum and Cheechee, who first bolted down the watchman’s Bismarck herring supper, then headed up White Star liner Arabic’s gangway and downed two red herrings cook had reserved for the boatswain’s mate’s breakfast.   Read more

 

 Baby boom 

A knitted toy kittenWithout any fuss or bother, the ship’s cat calmly delivered a litter of nine healthy kittens in a cosy corner of the chart room while BHP steamer Iron Monarch was riding through a storm off Wilson’s Promontory and huge seas were breaking all over the ship.   Read more

 

 Overboard 

An albatross with a wicked glint in its eyeJoseph, an intrepid ginger tomcat, fell in the sea from the mizzen channels, heroically paddled around the Pacific for 20 minutes, and punched a predatory albatross with a paw before finally being rescued in this nail-biter from Alan Villers.   Read more

 

 Get me out of here! 

Life ring“Get me out of here” springs to mind on a sinking ship. U.S. Life-Saving Service’s Captain Henry E. Ketcham and his surfmen obliged, hauling the crew and Tim, the ship’s cat, to safety in a breeches buoy in time for Christmas dinner reports Able Seacat Bart.    Read more

 

 Eating etiquette 

Vintage flatwareTrim dined well thanks to his (mostly) good manners as almost every officer and man on board fed him. Able Sea-cat Bart reveals Trim’s successful table strategy and the fact that Matthew Flinders may have trimmed a couple of years off his age and shares Bruce Watson’s musical tribute to Trim the circumnavigating cat.   Read more

 

 There’s a bear in there 

Not seafaring felines but seafaring bearsNot all seafurrers were ships’ cats, says Able Sea-cat Bart, regaling readers with entertaining tales of the mischief, mayhem and misdeeds wrought by “honorary seafurrers” – in this case seafaring bears.   Read more

 

 Paper trail 

Sneaky rats the enemy of paper the world overShips’ cats discovered rodents are big paper fans when Sam Cunard’s Britannia carried the Royal Mail says Able Sea-cat Bart with the inside story on negotiations for an allowance for post office cats and a tale of mice and manuscripts.   Read more

 

 I taut I taw a puddy tat! 

A highly sought-after canaryAble Sea-cat Bart turns this tall tale of a seafaring feline and a shipment of canaries on its head as a reminder that friendship can be where you least expect it.   Read more

 

 Big cats on board 

A tiger tattoo - a memento of a really BIG ships' cat?Able Sea-cat Bart shares two tales of friendship, fun and frolics with tiger cubs on board as honorary ships’ cats. He also reveals the role model for William Blake’s “Tiger, tiger burning bright” …   Read more

 

 Friend or foe? 

Charles Darwin's study of emotions in animals - an angry ships' cat and a submissive sea dog.When ships’ cats met seadogs was it war or peace? Depends, says Able Sea-cat Bart sharing happy families snaps of shipboard life plus Matthew Flinder’s Trim being rather a troublemaker to prove he was the undisputed master of the dogs onboard. Read more