by Jon Malings

Henry owned ships in his own name, H Samman and Co., in the name of the Deddington Steam Ship Company, the Middleton and, so it appears, the Sturton Steamship Company too. They were all “tramp” steamers, designed to carry bulky materials like coal,  iron ore and grain. 

Bonnie Kate
Built 1870, 827 tons. Henry Samman bought  Bonnie Kate in 1876 and sold her in 1883.  The ship sank in 1900.

Built in 1871  11172 tons. Bought in 1880 and sold in 1889. Elf was wrecked near Knopper-on-harboe March 31 1900  

Built in 1883  1432 tons  The Oxon was wrecked September 16 1889 near Storgrundet in the Gulf on Bothia 

Deddington (1)
Built in 1889. According to The Sydney Morning Herald, the Deddington was “A fine steel steamship of 2145 tons gross weight…her principal dimensions are: length  230 ft; beam 39 ft. 2 in.; depth of hold 18ft. 8in.  The engines are on the triple expansion principle…the indicated horsepower is 209.”  She spent much of her time in the far east transporting coal from Australia to Batavia, as well as carrying wool back to England before being sold-on in 1899.  She was wrecked in 1944 near the Sabbskars lighthouse in Sweden.    

Built in 1889, 1959 tons. Sold-on in 1898, she was wrecked in 1903 near Soderhamn in Sweden

Built in 1889, 2198 tons. Wrecked at Fatouville, at the mouth of the Seine, in 1896. The Ship’s Bell was recovered recently and now adorns a private house in France.

Built in 1891, 2177 tons,. Sold-on in 1903, wrecked 5.18N/9.30W in 1904.

Built in 1892, 1966 tons. Originally the “Burton Constable”, Henry bought this ship in 1893 and sold it in 1906 when it was renamed s.s. Lilian Drost. On a voyage from Blyth to Copenhagen, carrying a cargo of coal and coke, it was torpedoed by U-36 (Ernst Graeff) and sank at 56.37N/3.40E on May 8 1915. 

Knight Templar
Built by Austin & Hunter of Sunderland in 1874. 1567 tons, schooner rigged, 2 x compound engines. Enroute Odessa to London carrying grain, the vessel ran aground off Brest 18/12/1888 and was wrecked.

2734 tons. Launched at West Hartlepool on March 7 1895.  The naming ceremony was performed by Mrs. Bailey of Southfield Hessle.  The vessel was sold-on in 1912 and was finally broken-up at Aviles in 1963.  This appears to have been the only one of Henry’s ships that “stayed the course.”

2506 tons. Owned by the Middleton Steamship Company managed by H. Samman and Co., Middleton was launched on May 9 1895 by Henry’s daughter.  Sank on the November 30 1915 at 33.58N/22.56E by gunfire from an enemy submarine.

Arlington (1)
3092 tons. Launched at West Hartlepool on March 31 1897. “The ceremony of naming her ‘Arlington’ was gracefully carried out by Miss Gibson, daughter to Mr. E. Gibson, manager to H. Samman and Co.”  Wrecked off Ponto del Sol, St. Antonio, March 16 1919. 

Launched in 1899. 2128 tons. Torpedoed 33.10N/9.37W March 17 1918

3381 tons. Launched at Stockton in March 1899.  “As the vessel left the ways she was christened Clinton by Miss Elsie Sage, daughter of Mr. W. A. Sage of Hull, engineers superintendent for the owners. ”  Sank after a collision at Trevose Head, May 5 1918

Deddington (2)
Launched in 1903, 2827 tons. Sold on in 1918, wrecked at Corcubion bay May 20 1925. 
The National Archives in Kew contains several Deddington crew lists from WW1:

Launched in 1905, 2831 tons.  Sank on September 20 1916 at 67.36N/41.20E having hit a mine laid on August 4 of that year by U-75.

Launched 1906, 3142 tons, wrecked in the Artic October 12 1916.

Launched in 1906, 2961 tons. Sold in 1912 subsequently wrecked at Quelimane on February 15 1917 and beached at Tangalane. 

Launched 1912, 4286 tons.  Sold in 1919,  Scuttled as a block-ship in Leghorn in 1944

Arlington (2) 
4262 tons. Launched as the County of Carmarthen in 1916, leased almost immediately by Henry for one year as Arlington.  Torpedoed (UC-50) at 49.57N/5.08W on July 26 1917.  The second Deddington was sold to the owners of Carmarthen in 1918 and renamed Cardigan.