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.