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Merseyside Maritime Museum

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The Merseyside Maritime Museum is at Liverpool Docks, 1 mile southwest of the City centre and Lime Street Train Station, opened in 1980.

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The Merseyside Maritime Museum covers the history of Liverpool from the 1200s when it was just a small town, up to the Docks expanding from the 1500s, then the Docks closing in 1972 to be converted to housing, shops and tourism.

1100s - Liverpool was a real small town for farmers and fishermen.

1207 - King John made Liverpool a Borough, using the Port for troops to travel to Ireland. He was Lord of Ireland from 1177, having to conduct military campaigns to keep control.

1500s - the Port at Liverpool began expanding with trade around the world.

Imports of Tobacco, Sugar, Tea, Spices, Rum, Textiles, Timber and more led to huge Warehouses being built at Liverpool Docks and Canals to distribute the goods around England.

Exports from Liverpool included Salt, Coal, Earthenware, Textiles, Metal Products, Leather and Weapons.

1586 - Tobacco was being imported into Britain from Virginia in America, leading to a vast Tobacco Warehouse being built at Liverpool.

1600s - Liverpool ships were trading with Africa in goods such as Textiles and Guns.

1607 - Britain began taking control of America, where trade with Tobacco and Cotton became a huge industry.

1608 - the first British sail ships began trading with India for Spices such as Pepper, Turmeric, and Cumin.

1625 - the British took control of Barbados in the West Indies, off the southeast coast of Florida in America, setting up Sugar Plantations with poor whites from Britain and Ireland working there, basically as slaves.

The Sugar Plantations were also used to produce Rum, leading to a vast Rum Warehouse being built at Liverpool Docks.

1650s - the British began drinking Tea imported from China, expensive at the time as it was only imported in small amounts.

1860s - many Chinese people began working on Liverpool ships and settling in Liverpool.

1660s - Liverpool became a top departure port for many Emigrants traveling to America, Canada and Australia on Sail Ships that would take over 30 days to get to America, or 10 weeks to Australia.

Over 9 million people emigrated from Liverpool up to 1930.

1699 - the first recorded slave ship from Liverpool named the Liverpool Merchant, took goods to Africa, then picked up 220 African slaves to be transported to Barbados to work on the British Sugar Plantations, then the Ships would load up with Sugar and Rum to take back to Liverpool. Around 1.5 million African Slaves were transported by Liverpool ships to the West Indies and America. More Information.

1776 - America declared independence from Briton after refusing to pay Taxes to the British Parliament, setting off a number of battles.

1783 - America gained Independence, ending the battles with Briton.

1816 - the 127 mile long Liverpool to Leeds Canal opened taking boats up to 62 feet long.

1830 - the 34 mile long Liverpool and Manchester Railway opened, connecting these two large northern Cities.

1833 - the Slavery Abolition Act ended Slavery in the British Empire.

1840 - the 207ft long Steam Ship carrying 115 passengers - RMS Britannia of the Cunard Line, began operating between Liverpool and Boston in the US, cutting travel time down to 12 days to cross the 3,300 miles.

1845 - 1852 - the Irish Potato Famine led to over 1 million people leaving Ireland, many to Liverpool for work, and many emigrated on ships from Liverpool. The crossing from Dublin to Liverpool by boat is 134 miles.

1857 - Britain took control of India.

1860s - fast Clipper Sail Ships were being used to import vast amounts of Tea from China to ports in Britain such as Liverpool.

1860s - 1960s - over 100,000 British Children were sent to countries such as Canada and Australia, some orphans, some from poor families that could not care for them, to increase populations and provide cheep labour.

1865 - the United States abolished Slavery at the end of the American Civil War.

1894 - the 36 mile long Liverpool to Manchester Canal opened taking ships up to 600ft long.

1907 - the Port of Liverpool building was completed to run trade at Liverpool Docks.

1907 - the 787ft long Liners - Lusitania and Mauritania of the Cunard Line began operating between Liverpool and New York, cutting the crossing to 4 days, carrying 2,000 passengers, a time of mass migration to the US.

1911 - the Royal Liver Building was completed at Liverpool Docks for the Royal Liver Assurance group, for Life Insurance.

1917 - the Cunard Building was built at the Liverpool Docks as the headquarters of their shipping business, with the Cunard, Royal Liver and Port of Liverpool buildings becoming known as The Three Graces, the top photo of Liverpool.

1919 - Cunard moved their larger Emigrant Liners to the Port of Southampton on the south coast of England, closer to London.

1945 - 1985 - Australia offered financial assistance for European people to relocate to Australia, with about 2 million Britons moving, with the Liners taking between 32 and 40 days to make the crossing. The Second World War showed Australia they could easily be taken over during War, so decided to increase the population so they could defend themselves better.

1972 - most of the Liverpool Docks were closed to be sold for Housing, Shops and Tourism.

1980 - the Merseyside Maritime Museum opened at Liverpool Docks.

1988 - Tate Britain opened at Liverpool Docks.

1990 - the Beatles Story Museum opened at Liverpool Docks.

2007 - the Liverpool Cruise Terminal was opened at Liverpool docks capable of taking many of the largest Cruise Ships such as the 150,000 ton, 1,132ft long QM2.

2011 - the Museum of Liverpool opened at Liverpool Docks.

2014 - the Titanic Hotel was opened in a former Rum Warehouse.

2015 - Statues of the Beatles were erected at Liverpool Docks.

2015 - the British Music Experience opened in the Cunard Building at Liverpool Docks.

2021 - the Tobacco Warehouse at Liverpool Dock was converted into over 500 apartments.

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Merseyside Maritime Museum Photos