Norman Maybrick Ellison HMS Cornwall WW1

3 July 2011

Dear Mr Gregory,

My Grandfather told me a story that has always puzzled me and I would like to find the facts of the matter.

You are a skilled person in research matters and so I thought that you might be able to help.

He said that the ship was in the South China Sea and that a creature was observed swimming along side it as it travelled to their next port of call.

It was the same length as the ship.(HMS Cornwall)

Everyone was summoned on deck to witness it.A drawing was made of it in the ships log.All on board signed their name to it.

My Grandfather drew it for me.Small head.Long neck.Long tail.Broad in the middle.

What was this?

It was WW1. His name was Norman.Maybrick.Ellison.The Captains name was that
of Ellerton.

Where do I begin to find out?

Thank you.



HMS Cornwall (1902) From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

As you can see, Cornwall was on the China Station from January 1916 to March of 1917.

Here are the ship logs at the National Archives KEW, and I would expect Cornwall’s logs for 1916 and 1917 would unlock the Monster mystery. The logs cannot be viewed online.


armoured cruiser, Monmouth-class, 9,800, 1904(c), 14-6in, 23kts, 678 crew, Falkland Islands 1914, Dardanelles 1915. Sold 1920


Dec 1913-Apr 1915, West Indies, South Atlantic, East Africa

Jan 1916-Mar 1917, China

Aug 1917-Aug 1919, West Indies, Atlantic convoys

Series reference ADM 51

Admiralty: Captains' Logs

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ADM Records of the Admiralty, Naval Forces, Royal Marines, Coastguard, and related bodies

Description: top of pageDivision within ADM Records of HM Ships

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Record Summary


Admiralty: Captains' Logs

Scope and content

These logs were maintained by the captain of each ship in commission, and kept in manuscript form on a continuous daily basis. They cover details of the employment and position of the ship and ship's company, details of weather encountered, and provide a full picture of the daily routine of a naval vessel under sail. Some occasionally provide a list of the crew.

Also includes a small number of lieutenants' logs.

PLEASE NOTE: digitised logbooks are available on the British Atmospheric Data Centre's website.

Covering dates



The series is arranged alphabetically, and in chronological order under each ship.

Held by

The National Archives, Kew

Legal status

Public Record(s)



Physical description

4563 volume(s)

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Access conditions

Subject to 30 year closure unless otherwise stated


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