Sources of information for sailing barge research are mainly official records, and others where events in the life of the barge or crew are recorded.
There are no offical records exclusive to sailing barges, and as they come under Merchant Shipping, a useful gude to those available has been published by the PRO - "Records of Merchant Shipping and Seamen" by Kelvin Smith, Christopher T Watts and Michael J Watts, ISBN 1 873 162 49 9. (see also their website)
The main centre for relevant documents are the PRO* at Kew, The National Maritime Museum, Greenwich , some County Record Offices in the relevant areas, and the Guildhall Library, London, also holds useful records (e.g. Lloyd's "Captains Registers" (1869-1948) relating to the careers of master mariners)
Other information about the barges often only occurs if something particular happens that is subsequently recorded. Newspaper archives can therefore often be a source in information, especially if you know of an event, the date it occurred and the area where it happened.
for list of recognised books published about sailing barges. Many
of them may be out of print, but some of them can be obtained through
second hand outlets ( also, contact SSBR/TBST
or Dolphin Yard Museum Trust
contacts for a list of their current holdings).
of published information are the journals of the Thames
Sailing Barge Trust and the
Society for Sailing Barge Research, and anyone interested may
find it useful to join one or other of these groups and take part
in the exchange of information through their publications.
reliably informed that the documents most relevant to sailing barges,
held at Kew are: