CLIWOC: A climatological database for the world's oceans 1750-1854

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We have compiled a meteorological database over the world's oceans by digitizing data from European ship logbooks of voyages in the period 1750-1854. The observations are carefully reviewed and transformed into quantitative data. The chief contents of the database are wind direction and wind force information, from a period without standardized scales. It is found that the information content of these so-called non-instrumental data is much higher than previously believed. The 105-year CLIWOC database extends existing meteorological world ocean databases like ICOADS back in time by a full century.
© Springer 2005. This work was supported by the European Commission, DG XII, Programme 2.4.1: ‘Better exploitation of existing data and adaptation of existing systems’, EC Framework V Project EVK2-CT-2000-00090 (CLIWOC). The authors thank David Parker for his many suggestions during the preparation of this paper. Scott Woodruff is thanked for providing the US Maury data of Figure 5. The CLIWOC database is accessible via Internet via, from which links are included to allow for consultation of the imaged logbooks.
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