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Week 08 - adieu to old England

[ 10th of April 1836 to 16th of April 1836 ]
[ View related 'school content': Week 08: Employment ]

By 10 April the Duke of York was on its way once more, although not without anxiety on Captain Morgan’s part. The recent storm still weighed on his mind. He and the mate prayed together for guidance and then he sought extra consolation in reading the 121st Psalm. Reassured, he gave the order to get underway again.

With far more extensive repairs to complete, the John Pirie was delayed in port for another six days. Captain Martin also had three crew members to replace. He finally sailed on 16 April, although without the cabin passenger Stephen Sessions, who left the ship after the storm never to return. It is probably a miracle that more passengers didn’t join him! We can only wonder at the feelings of those on board as they set out into the ocean once more.

Both the Cygnet and the Lady Mary Pelham were also on the water, although we have no sources from either ship this week.

Journals from passengers at sea:

Sunday 10 April 1836

[, on board the wrote.]

I rose this morning under some stress of mind
conserning the path of duty the wind fair
from the NE all ships out of the harbour
but our own I have experianced what it is
to be here in destress blowing from the SE
with a heigh sea I went on my knees and prayed to be
directed in the right way I afterwards consulted with
the mate we went on our knees togather and prayed
fervently to be directed the right way …

…  the wind blow
ing in the bay and likely to increase I felt my
mind easey when I thought of sailing out but
otherwise when of staying I read the 121th Psalm
and gave orders for gitting under weigh we weigh
ed anchor and made sail down chanel with a
fine and pleasant breese from the eastward all
on board seemd to enjoy the fine weather and fair
wind after upwards of six weeks contrary winds

I bid adewe to old England again
and those I love dearly as my own soul home is
all that sweetings like it speaks the warm affection
of a wife or the lisping babe that pratles on the knee with
all the joys of infantcy
at 8 PM the edistone light bore by compass ENE distance
about 6 A league is a measure of distance in the imperial system. At sea a league equals three nautical miles or 5.56 kilometres. leagues fine plesent weather all sail set

[ Read the full journal extract ]

Wednesday 13 April 1836

[, on board the wrote.]

During this Afternoon we got on board, 2 Rams
2 Ewes, 1 Sow, 1 Boar, and 4 small pork Pigs,
also a lot of Fowls, and 3 Turkeys, besides 3 Bags
of Oats, 3 Bags of Barley, and a quantity of A swede or yellow turnip. Swe-
-dish Turnips

[ Read the full journal extract ]

Thursday 14 April 1836

[, on board the wrote.]

At half past 3 AM Ships could not sail directly into the wind, but they could sail across it at angles. So, to move forward in the direction of the wind they set a zigzag course, sailing across the wind at alternating angles. That course was called tacking. Tackd ship to the SWd signalaized
a ship named ganges bound to Mauritius bark
rigged we The action or process of measuring the depth of water with a sounding line, a line marked at intervals of fathoms and weighted at one end. A fathom is a unit of length equal to 6 feet (1.83 metres). sounded at 85 A fathom is a measure of depth in the imperial system. One fathom is equal to six feet or 1.83 metres. fathoms water sand and
shells              Lattd Obsd 48.41 N Longd 6.30 west

[ Read the full journal extract ]

Saturday 16 April 1836

[, on board the wrote.]

This 24 hours cloudy weather though plesent wind
ENE increaseing employd putting down the salt
provisions we had on deck in the place of in the room of water we
got up we unbent the chain from the Anchor put
the cables below and cleaned down the decks
Lattd Obs 46.48 North Long 9.26 West

[ Read the full journal extract ]

Saturday 16 April 1836

[, on board the wrote.]

The repairs of our Vessel being completed, and every
thing got on board, with two fresh Sailor’s, and a Cook,
to fill the situations of those who decamp’d (but no One
in the room of Stephen Sessions), we When the crew weigh anchor they raise or lift it from the ocean floor so they can put the ship in motion. weigh’d Anchor at
10½, A,M, and proceeded to Sea once more, with the Wind
from S,S,W, which contd until 5, P,M when a fine
Breeze sprang up from the Northward, and remain’d so
all Night  ________  In the Afternoon our Capt order’d the
Ewe to be kill’d, which I spoke of Yestdy, as it was in
extreme Misery, and at 4 P,M, one of the Turkey’s,
unfortunately flew overboard and was drown’d  _____

[ Read the full journal extract ]

Next week: Although the weather had moderated, all of the ships continued to battle high seas and strong winds. Extensive wreckage floating in their path reminded them all of the peril they had recently escaped.

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2 Responses to “Week 08 – adieu to old England”

  1. Allison November 10, 2011 at 7:58 am #

    Hi Lori.

    You can subscribe to our email newsletters by filling in your details in the box that says ‘Sign up for our email updates’. It’s on the right hand side of the page about half way down.

    Allison – History SA


  1. Lori Bongiovanni - November 9, 2011


    Where is the feed button, so I can subscribe to your updates?…

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