Information about Captain Arthur Donald Davies and the ship Bellgold?
Captain ARTHUR DONALD DAVIES, WAS Capt: of the Bellgold, it was made with money from Belgian,gold and British oil, Winston Churchill asked for it to be made, they used it to try to rescue the Zar of PRUSSIA, CAPTAIN DAVIES MANNED THIS SHIP, HE WAS IN THE MERCHANT NAVY,IN ENGLAND. Please could you find anything out about this galant man, he was still alive in 1949, he was my Grandfather, he went to sea at 14 yrs in or about 1870 thru 1884 he was in sailing ships, to start, he also had a son named after him, and two girls, MARY DAVIES, AND Josephine Margaret Bertha Davies.
I cannot find any reference to either the Bellgold or your grandfather Captain Davies.
I have about a dozen books on Winston Churchill, none reveal the Bellgold, or any rescue attempt of the Tsar of Prussia.
You indicate that Captain Davies was in Bellgold, and that he was in the British Merchant Navy, you call the Bellgold, First Destroyer in your subject line.
Was she a Royal Navy ship and your Grandfather on loan from the Merchant Navy, or was this ship actually a Merchant Navy vessel? You say he was involved in a rescue attempt of the Tsar of Prussia, is that correct? or is it the Tsar of Russia?
Do you have any sort of time frame when Bellgold was used in this rescue attempt?
Do you know in which country the Bellgold was built?
Was your Grandfather born in England? and do you know the names of any other ships he served in?
Do you know what shipping line he served?
I realise I am posing a lot of questions, but any further information would be a great help in trying to track down your Grandfather.
But right now I have simply drawn a blank about him, the Bellgold, or any rescue attempt, but I would love to help.
An interesting page about Nicholas 11, he abdicated on March 17, 1917, in favour of his brother Michael.
Nicholas, his wife Alexandra, their 4 daughters and 1 son, Alexis were imprisoned in the Tsarskoya Seleo Palace in Petrograd for several months until in August of 1917 they were transported to Siberia. In July 1918 the total family were executed by local Bolsheviks. None of the above brings us any closer to finding out about your Grandfather, but I was exploring the facts about the demise of Nicholas, in the hope of uncovering some plan to try and rescue them by the British.
In the photo of Nicholas and King George V, the likeness between them is quite remarkable.
Have a nice New Year's eve and day, I have not given up in our quest, just it is frustrating not to be able to turn up something on your Grandfather. I have appealed to a friend in UK, who is good on Naval History in the hope he may know something about Bellgold.
Let's keep our collective fingers crossed Josephine.
Bye for now,
Think this must of been a very special adventure, think you are right asking U.K. friend,something else my Mother said always suprised me, she said," when young men where learning about the sea in the Navy they had to learn about the Bellgold first, it was part of their, first officers test exams, I wonder are any of those papers in a log book somewhere, maybe in an Archives somewhere?
This is sure interesting, thanks for the pictures, let's wait for your U.K.friend and see what he comes up with!!!!!!!!!
Bye for now.
My friend Mike in England has responded to say that: He did not believe that Bellgold ever existed, as she is not listed in any of the Naval Lists of ships. That is not good news, I must say, when I could not uncover the slighest sniff of any record of her in the Royal Navy, I was coming to that view.
It may just have been too secret to ever officially record. I will continue to probe.
Have a Happy New Year's eve.
Firstly Happy New Year!!
Yes please send your Brother's E.Mail address and his home address, I can look him up in the Melbourne Phone book and give him a call, you may have his Phone No. then if he agrees we can get together sometime.
I have not been able to find a ship of any kind named Bellgold, and Mike in England has just sent another message to me, making the same observation. It is strange, also, Winston Churchill loved to be involved in special or romantic operations, such as mounting a rescue of Nicholas 11, and he usually recorded such things. Just no where can I find the slightest hint of the Bellgold saga in any of his books, or in the biographies about him. I have Roy Jenkin's Churchill, the latest and one of the very best books on Winston. But not a single word to assist us to unravel this mystery.
You may find some useful references to follow up about him here.
April 19, 2012
Hello Mr. Gregory
Today I came across some correspondence on your site (your web blog) that dates back to 2004 so I am not sure if you will be able to help me or your correspondent, Josephine O Horner.
The article is entitled "Information about Captain Arthur Donald Davies and the ship Bellgold?". I find her correspondence interesting, although not correct, I believe.
The father of the children of Arthur D Davies that she mentions are children of Arthur Donaldson Davies who was born in 1871 in Buckfastleigh Devon. Arthur Donaldson Davies was a master mariner, but her dates are obviously incorrect and I believe he did not go to sea at age 14. In 1891 at the age of 19 he was living independently with his siblings in Guildford, Surrey, and he is listed as not having any voyages in 1895 and 1897 on the Lloyds of London's Captain Register. By 1901 he was a farmer in Heathfield Sussex, and by 1911 was a Tobacconist with his brother William Charles in Willesden, Middlesex. In 1930 he is listed again as a Master Mariner as the executor of his brother's Will. I cannot, therefore confirm or deny her other facts, but certainly he did not go to sea in 1870.
Arthur Donaldson Davies' father was Cmdr Henry Davies of the Royal Navy. In 1853 he was aboard the "Electra" in Australian waters. He subsequently served on HMS Spider and HMS Forward, eventually gaining the rank of Commander.
The purpose of my email is my hope that you will still have contact details for her, and able to pass my email address on to her in the hope that she might contact me. I realize the passage of time may make this difficult.
Thanks for taking the trouble to write to me.
I regret that I do not still have Josephne's email address, but on our URL:
"Information about Captain Arthur Donald Davies and the ship Bellgold?". on Ahoy that carries the interchange I had with her back in 2004,
We will add your letter.
As a stoke of luck, I found relations of hers. She has passed away. I have been in correspondence with them, and
My thanks for your information.