The stockless anchor, patented in England in 1821, represented the first significant departure in anchor design in centuries. Though their holding-power-to-weight ratio was significantly lower than admiralty pattern anchors, their ease of handling and stowage aboard large ships led to almost universal adoption.
This Union stockless type anchor is an Admiralty Pattern anchor with a folding stock (designed to be folded when not in use so that anchor can be stored on deck). It came into common use during the mid to late 1800’s.
In contrast to the elaborate stowage procedures for earlier anchors, stockless anchors are simply hauled up until they rest with the shank inside the hawse pipes, and the flukes against the hull (or inside a recess in the hull). These types of anchors were often stored aboard a vessel as a back-up anchor.