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Shipbuilder: John Rogerson & Co, St Peter's
John Rogerson (1828-1894)
John Rogerson was born at Morpeth, Northumberland, on the 9th of September 1828. At sixteen years of age he entered the office of Sopwith and Scott, civil engineers, of Newcastle-on-Tyne. He was then for a time in the service of the Northumberland and Durham Coal Mining Co. Shortly before the Crimean War he was fortunate enough to make some shipping investments which turned out to be very successful and led to his becoming considerably interested in shipping property. In 1856 and following years he secured large contracts in America for railroad materials.
In 1862 an Act was obtained for the regulation of the passenger traffic of the Tyne and Mr Rogerson turned his attention to the improvement of the ferry-steamers on that river. He introduced improved steamers known as the Red Star Line and subsequently opened a shipbuilding and repairing yard at St Peter's. These steamers were afterwards taken over by the Tyne General Ferry Co, of which Mr Rogerson was for some years managing director. In 1875 they were stated to be carrying four million passengers per annum.