Shenandoah Down Under

Shenandoah Down Under Episode 43

As the Shenandoah continues through the Pacific on the way back to Liverpool, Captain Waddell’s behaviour grows increasingly erratic, and, to quote Surgeon Lining, things are going “from worse to worst”. First Lieutenant Debney Minor Scales is removed from his watch for the terrible crime of sleeping in, and then Lieutenant Cornelius Hunt is also removed from his command, because reasons. This leaves the ship so short of officers that the Captain takes a watch himself, a very bad state of affairs.

Rob and Mob then quote from Cornelius Hunt’s memoirs of happier times before the end of the war, when the Shenandoah captured the Abigail and it’s tremendous quantity of alcohol. On that occasion Captain Nye of the Abigail asked why the Shenandoah was so far north, and got the following reply:

“Why, the fact of the business is, Captain,” replied the officer, facetiously, ” we have entered into a treaty offensive and defensive with the whales, and are up here by special agreement to disperse their mortal enemies.”

What pretty sentiments from men now driven to bickering and fighting. Will the officers of the Ship pull themselves together? Find out in this weeks episode of Shenandoah Down Under.


Shenandoah Down Under Episode 25

With the Shenandoah about to land in Pohnpei in what is now the Federated States of Micronesia, Rob, Mob and guest Rick Meints step back a bit to consider events in early April in the sideshow theatre of the American Civil War that was actually happening in America, populated by minor and little known figures called Lincoln, Grant and Lee.

Also, in the present day, the Sea Shepard ship the Bob Barker claims the prize of an illegal fishing vessel, proving once again that while history doesn’t repeat, it sure does rhyme….

Shenandoah Down Under Episode 23

With the Shenandoah travelling through the equatorial Gilbert Islands, Rob and Mob reflect on the famously laconic declaration of victory made by the American General in the Second World War who took the main island, Makin, from the Japanese. The declaration was, of course, “Taken Maken”, which manages to be shorter than Veni, Vidi, Vici by one word (so take that, Julius Caesar).

Back in modern times, this episode has the second half of our interview with Barry Crompton, of the American Civil War Round Table of Australia, launching his Ebook “Dixie Down Under”. What Ship in the Sea Shepard fleet was originally going to be called the Waddell? How many US warships have been called the Shenandoah? What was US consul Blanchard’s connection to the Harriet Beecher Stowe’s massive hit “Uncle Tom’s Cabin”. Find out in this weeks episode of Shenandoah Down Under, and leave a comment by 13 April 2015 for a chance to win a copy of Barry’s Ebook.

Shenandoah Down Under Episode 22

Rob and Mob are joined by Barry Crompton from the American Civil War Round Table of Australia, to launch his intensively researched tome Dixie Down Under. Barry describes the efforts made to track down the Australian members of the Shenandoah’s crew, including William Kenyon, the only Australian born member of the crew, and the only Australian crewman whose grave has been identified. Find out what William did with the rest of his life (hint, it involved alcohol and ‘disorderly women’), on this weeks episode of Shenandoah Down Under.

Shenandoah Down Under Episode 21

With the Shenandoah heading through a patch of sea that Executive Officer Whittle calls ‘Oh, the terrible monotony’ Rob and Mob are lucky enough to have a listener alert them to the fact that they rather neglected the Shenandoah’s departure from Melbourne, which was much more exciting. In  full flashback mode  they describe the troubles of Union Consul Blanchard in trying to find a magistrate ready to stop the Shenandoah, when every magistrate in Melbourne is trying to avoid him….

Shenandoah Down Under Episode 18

After the excitement of the Ball serious events are brewing back in Melbourne for the crew of the Shenandoah. Union Consul Blanchard is busy building a case, and is accusing officers of the Shenandoah of recruiting British subjects. As this is precisely what they are doing it is not surprising that the police become involved. As the Ship lies helpless in dry dock 50 armed policemen surround it, and the Shenandoah is trapped, well, like a ship out of water. What happens next? Find out in the exciting eighteenth episode of Shenandoah Down Under!

Shenandoah Down Under Episode 16

The visit of the Shenandoah to Melbourne proves to be the social event of the year, with thousands flocking for tours of the ship, and the Officers hosted for dinner at the Establishment Melbourne club. But some among the populace are not happy about this, and are sending stern letters to the editor (and probably threatening to cancel their subscriptions).


One hundred and fifty years later Shenandoah celebrations have once more taken the city by storm (or at least, the part of the population that are Civil War buffs), and with a crowded lecture, re-enactment and conference program will Rob and Mob be able to stand the pace?


Finally, what on earth is Tofurkey, and what does it have to do with the 150th anniversary of the Shenandoah’s voyage?

Shenandoah Down Under Episode 15

On 25 January 1865, the Shenandoah arrived in Melbourne, Australia, on a day that will forever afterwards be known as the day before Australia day. So significant is this day that 150 years later, Rob and Mob were able to lift a tankard of Shenandoah Anniversary ale at the Seaworks museum in Williamstown, at the heart of Melbourne’s historic port district. Upon arrival the crew disburse their prisoners, with the redoubtable Mrs Nichols wishing they would come to harm at the earliest opportunity.

In the busy City of Melbourne news from afar is available after the long treck accross the Southern Ocean, and the crew learn that the Confederacy are still fighting and Abe Lincoln has been re-elected president. How will they spend their time in Melbourne? Will they party? Will they enjoy the favours of pretty ladies? Yup.