A QUAKER WALK AROUND MILFORD HAVEN
Lord Hamilton, the local land owner, had petitioned parliament for permission to build a new town and port and an Act was passed in 1790 granting permission. He gave the job of overseeing the project to his nephew, Charles Greville MP.
Greville offered the opportunity to settle the new town to some whalers who has migrated to Nova Scotia from Nantucket Island in New England as a result of the American War of Independence. The war, and the trade embargo that followed, had cut them off from the main market for their whale products. Sperm oil for lamps and spermaceti candles being especially valued in London.
They arrived in five of their tall ships in August 1792, bringing their families and the trades men needed onshore to service the ships, such as sail makers, coopers, chandlers, rope makers and shipwrights.
They soon set too building the homes, warehouses and port facilities they needed.
2A: CUSTOM HOUSE & WHALE OIL STORE
In 1792 a group of Quaker whalers, originally from Nantucket Island in New England, arrived with their ships in Milford Haven to settle with their families in the new town.
Creating the new town and port had been the idea of Lord Hamilton who had inherited the land all about from his first wife, Catherine Barlow, the daughter of Hugh Barlow, Member of Parliament for Pembroke Boroughs.
His agent, Charles Greville, invited the Quaker whalers to settle because he realised they were hard working, honest, enterprising people capable of developing the port.
Fifty arrived in five ships in 1792. Prominent among them were three ship owning Quaker families – the Starbucks, the Folgers and the Rotches.
Samual Starbuck senior was the spokesman for the colony. He built his house, Priory Lodge, inland. The other whalers preferred to have their homes overlooking the sea and the new port. An American influence is noticeable in the architecture of their houses and in the strict grid-iron layout and width of the streets.