Sir Alfred Lewis Jones
Sir Alfred Lewis Jones
William Thomas
William Thomas
<em>Colony</em> built for William Thomas in 1885
Colony built for William Thomas in 1885
<em>Crocodile</em> built for William Thomas in 1892
Crocodile built for William Thomas in 1892
<em>Metropolis</em> built for William Thomas in 1887
Metropolis built for William Thomas in 1887

Wales has a 1,200km (750 mile) coastline and a long tradition of seafaring. Welsh sailors travelled around the world, exporting Welsh goods and importing raw materials for industry. Welsh shipping lines were among the best-known in maritime trade and the company owners were amongst the richest.

With the large and important Atlantic port of Liverpool being so close to north Wales, it is no surprise to find that a number of important shipowners in the city were Welsh.

Sir Alfred Lewis Jones, originally of Carmarthenshire, was an apprentice at the African Steamship Company from the age of 12 in 1857. By 1900 he owned the majority of the company. He founded the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine.

By the nature of their work, Welsh mariners travelled the world and many of them settled in other countries. William Jones of Newborough in Anglesey sailed on his uncle's ships to Australia and settled in Burnie, Tasmania in 1872 aged 30. He became the most prominent shipowner and industrialist in the area.

William Thomas

William Thomas was born in Llanrhuddlad, Anglesey in 1837. He moved to Liverpool as a clerk in 1854 and six years later had his own shipping company, despite hating sailing himself. He retained strong links with north Wales and Anglesey but became Mayor of Bootle in 1892 and 1899. He died in 1915.

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