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Thomas Whitton Andrews (?-1813)


Thomas Whitton Andrews sailed on Cook’s Second Voyage in Adventure as the surgeon.  Details of his birth remain unknown.  He had recently qualified as a ship’s surgeon having gained his diploma on 3 August 1769 and passed his examination for surgeon first rate on 8 February 1771.1  He joined the ship on 25 December 1771 from Somerset


During the voyage Captain Tobias Furneaux took on board Mai (known as Omai in Britain), a Raiatean, in order to take him to Britain.  Andrews had become reasonably proficient in the Polynesian language, and he was entrusted with looking after Mai.  This work continued after the voyage during Mai’s time in Britain.2  


Thomas Andrews married Elizabeth Falconar on 6 July 1775 at Stoke Damerel, Plymouth. She was the sister of John Richard Falconar who had also sailed in Adventure.  Thomas and Elizabeth Andrews had one son, Magnus Whitton Andrews born on 22 June 1776 at Haverfordwest in Pembrokeshire, Wales.  He was named after Elizabeth’s father, Magnus Falconar.  


Andrews later served in Thetis, Russell, Buffalo, Monarchia, Nabob, Orford and Catherine the Great.  He left the last named ship in October 1790 and, presumably, then retired from the navy.

Elizabeth Andrews died on 14 October 1802, and was buried in Chatham churchyard, Kent.  Thomas Whitton Andrews died on 9 December 1813 in Gillingham, Kent, leaving a will.3  He was buried with his wife. 


Magnus Whitton Andrews married twice.  His first wife was Catherine French, a daughter of Robert and Mary French of Dover in Kent.  The Andrews moved to live on Madeira where they had four children.  Catherine died, and Magnus married Maria Day on 18 August 1831 in Watford, Hertfordshire.  The Andrews lived at 7 Arlington Street off Piccadilly in London.  Magnus trained as an apothecary and a surgeon.  On 11 March 1833, he was appointed Her Majesty’s Apothecary in Ordinary to Queen Adelaide, wife of King William IV.  Magnus died on 9 January 1835.  His will was proven on 6 April 1835.4 


My thanks to Jane Maw Cornish, who assisted in the compilation of this piece. 


John Robson


  1. Cook’s Log, page 39, vol. 33, no. 2 (2010).  
  2. Cook’s Log, page 1634, vol. 22, no. 3 (1999) and page 1704, vol. 23, no. 1 (2000).
  3. PROB 11/1551.
  4. PROB 11/1845. 

Originally published in Cook's Log, page 9, volume 34, number 3 (2011).

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