cayzer family

The Cayzer Family Archive

Welcome to the Cayzer Family Archive. This website charts the history of the family firm, Cayzer, Irvine & Company Limited, which was founded by the energetic and indomitable Charles William Cayzer (1st baronet) in 1878.   It shows how, from small beginnings, the Company grew to dominate international shipping, at its zenith boasting among its number such household names as Clan Line Steamers and the Union-Castle Line Company.     

The history of Cayzer, Irvine and its associate companies is a long and rich one. Not only is it that of a sea-faring business, but one that embraces Britain and  her Empire.  On this website the Company's development can be traced from the days of steam to those of oil;  through the depression, two world wars and into the modern age.  

The collection also contains many family letters, which throw considerable light on Sir Charles Cayzer's personal and political life and on the lives of his children and grandchildren.  

We are in the process of digitalising the Archive and hope to make as many documents as possible available online.   It should be noted however that viewing original material from the collection is strictly by prior appointment.