Posted by: Karlee A. Turner | March 2, 2014

2nd March 1849

Through most of 1849, Mary Brewster made nearly daily journal entries. However, most of them are very brief.  Oftentimes, Mary’s journal entries are reflective of 19th-century whaling ships’ logs entries that typically would have been made by the captain or first officer of the vessels.

Mary Brewster, FRIDAY MARCH 2nd 1849: “Came to anchor at Umatac [at Guam] and find it a fine water place – but we fear we shall get nothing in the way of recruit — The island has been visited by 80 ships who have taken all that could be spared which it seems was not much as they have had no rain during the season. Consequently the vegetation is very scarce and to add to their distress a week ago they experienced an earthquake which had thrown down their buildings and destroyed trees and done them much damage. The Governor has been on board, talks a little English, on asking him if he went up to the upper town he said, no, for if I go they put me in the fort — who would envy him his title –”

NOTE: First picture below – the location of Umatac Bay at Guam in the southern Pacific. Second photo – Umatac Bay.

File:Guam map Umatac.png

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During the 19th century, Guam was a frequent port visited by many American whaling vessels, including the Charles W. Morgan. The Morgan visited Guam twice (1865 and 1866) during its seventh voyage (1 December 1865 – 12 June 1867).

During January 1866, Captain Thomas Landers accompanied his young wife, Lydia Ann Goodspeed Landers, onto shore where their first child was born, 26 January 1866. Federal Census and birth records confirm their son’s birth at Guam. A journal entry dated “Saturday, 20th January 1866” made by First Officer Charles C. Chace, left in charge while the captain was ashore, wrote, “Charles C. Chace, Master. Anchored at Guam.” A second entry made by Chace reads, “26th January 1866 ….Capt. came [returned to the ship] and took charge….”  A third entry was made, “23rd February 1866….took Capt. and wife [and newborn son] on board….”

The Morgan, now owned by Mystic Seaport in CT, recently underwent a multi-million dollar overhaul to make it seaworthy. The Morgan is expected to depart Mystic for its 38th voyage on May 24, 2014. As it tours northern New England, it will make stops at various ports and be open to the public at: New London, CT; Newport, RI; Martha’s Vineyard (Vineyard Haven), MA; New Bedford, MA; Boston, MA; and MA Maritime Academy. As part of its educational dockside tour about northern New England, a minimum two seaport staff role players are scheduled to accompany the Morgan at most of the ports.

The Charles W. Morgan will return to Mystic Seaport approximately August 9, 2014. For a full schedule of the Morgan’s 38th voyage, go to www.mysticseaport.org

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