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Halifax, Nova Scotia, was founded by the British in 1749; I am interested in the commercial trade during the French Revolutionary Wars, 1792 thru 1798, which is the period of the First Coalition.

 British trade routes as shown by ship logs between 1750 and 1800.

The source of the map is James Cheshire at Spatial Analysis, who took the log data from the CLIWOC project database. The database itself is no longer accessible. But see here. I was able to track down a copy of the database, but it requires MS Access 2000 to read the data, and I have not been able to find a tool to convert the data to the more recent MS Access format.

Map shows British trade routes as derived from ship's logs between 1750 and 1800.

I am interested in learning which ports, American and British, were active in the shipping trade, both to and from Halifax, during this time period.

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I have now downloaded the CLIWOC15_2000.zip file, unzipped it to CLIWOC15_2000.mdb, and successfully opened it with MS-ACCESS 2016 by holding SHIFT down while doing so (This disables any startup macros.) I then declined the option of enabling active content.

The following query

SELECT
    ShipName,
    ShipType,
    VoyageIni,
    VoyageFrom,
    VoyageTo,
    Company,
    Nationality,
    Name1, Rank1,
    Name2, Rank2
   ,count(*) as Records
FROM CLIWOC15
WHERE ( VoyageFrom Like "HALIFAX*"
     OR VoyageTo   Like "HALIFAX*"
      )
  AND  Year BETWEEN 1792 and 1798
GROUP BY
    ShipName,
    ShipType,
    VoyageIni,
    VoyageFrom,
    VoyageTo,
    Company,
    Nationality,
    Name1, Rank1,
    Name2, Rank2
ORDER BY
    ShipName,
    ShipType,
    VoyageIni
;

(where Year is that of the log entry) then returns these five Royal Navy voyages:

enter image description here

  • Changing ( CLIWOC15.VoyageFrom Like "HALIFAX*" OR CLIWOC15.VoyageTo Like "HALIFAX*" ) to ( CLIWOC15.VoyageFrom Like "*HALIFAX*" OR CLIWOC15.VoyageTo Like "*HALIFAX*" ) made no difference to the results. – Pieter Geerkens Jan 24 at 10:56
  • This is a fantastic hands-on approach, and about historical data. But I wonder whether all this is not really better placed at SuperUser? // Please add the links to your source files./ To really make me happy this needs an alternative to MSAccess, which eg I do not have. + – LangLangC Jan 24 at 11:01
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    @LangLangC: The OLEDB Provider "Microsoft.ACE.OLEDB.12.0" is available for 64-bit environments through the redistributable (free) fownload of the MS_Access database engine. This should allow one to query the MDB data through another application such as EXCEL or SQL Server. – Pieter Geerkens Jan 24 at 11:38
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    @LangLangC: NB: the Access Database Engine has always been free - what you pay for is the suite of design tools. Once the Access Database Engine Redistributable has been installed, any database-aware software (even EXCEL, though performance will be a pig because EXCEL is NOT a database engine) can read ACCDB and MDB files using it as the provider. Also any Access application built using the design suite can be run locally. – Pieter Geerkens Jan 24 at 11:55
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    @PieterGeerkens, Looking at the Spanish logs, those too appear to be from naval vessels rather than merchant ships. I suspect that the legend on the map ("British Trade Routes") is somewhat inaccurate. Also Halifax served as a Royal Naval Dockyard, and the headquarters for the Royal Navy's North American Station, from 1759. – Steve Bird Jan 24 at 16:19

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