Portaferry was indeed once a ship building town and was a centre for commerce and trade so lots of ships would have started here.
Newtownards Visitor Information Centre is based just 20 miles from Portaferry and there is a seasonal Visitor Information office open in Portaferry.
In the years 1812-1822 thirty ships were built, including the largest ship in Ireland at the time. These ships sailed from the ports of Portaferry and Strangford and took passengers, emigrants and cargo to North America and many other areas. Ships' captains from Portaferry were known all over the world. The grand houses along the shore are testament to the shipbuilders, merchants and master mariners who lived there. Sailors, ferrymen and boatmen lived on every street.Local family names such as Curran, Murray, Tweedie and Brown are all associated with building smaller craft such as creel fishing, boats, to collect dulse, for leisure and for racing. “The St. Brendan”, built by John Murray, is well known as a heritage tour boat on Strangford Lough.Hugh Tweedie was a Portaferry cobbler and boat builder. His expertise was later used by Billy and Dickie Brown who designed and built boats at Ballyfoundry.Some contacts that may be able to assist further are listed below:http://www.downcoastalrowing.org/portaferry https://www.facebook.com/portaferrypast https://www.portaferryandstrangfordtrust.org/
This is another site to browse although the name “Small” does not appear – http://rosdavies.com/WORDS/Ships.htm
I hope you have success in tracking the name down.
Let us know how you get on.
Kind Regards Alex