East India Company Ships at Deptford

Image credit: National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, London

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This depicts the East India Company's Yard and buildings near Deptford Creek. Several ships are on the stocks and their striped ensigns identify them as Indiamen. The ships initially used by the Company were purchased privately. However losses from wear, tear and wreck took their toll and large ships suitable for the Eastern trade were soon at a premium. In 1607 the Company therefore decided to build its own ships and they leased a yard in Deptford. Initially, this change of policy was fully justified, but the shipbuilding and maintenance of these yards at Deptford soon proved highly expensive to run. Later in the seventeenth century the Company reverted to the practice of hiring vessels, many of which were built in the private yards at Deptford and Blackwall.

National Maritime Museum



East India Company Ships at Deptford




oil on canvas


H 91.5 x W 186.7 cm

Accession number


Work type



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