Posted by: Karlee A. Turner | August 28, 2014

28th August 1849 – Storm at Sea!

Mary Brewster, TUESDAY [August] 23rd [1849]: “Wind shortly increased to a gale. I had not gone to bed having the toothache. At 10, put out the fire, too rough to boil [the whale blubber into oil]. At 12, wind got to the West blowing a hard gale with a very bad sea so I had to go below — had hardly got down when the cry of all hands on deck sounded — Soon I heard, all the boats gone, sir. I felt so wretched having had no sleep for some nights and such a toothache that this last cry did not frighten me — I felt as if I did not care — The boats were not all destroyed, lost one, davits, craft and all and stove the other two. Ship all broke out and in bad order for gale, lost one davit to the waist boat and had the second mate been a less active man should have lost that boat.  He made out to secure it. Split the foresail. Got the ship laying to, rolling heavily. Towards 6 AM wind moderated a little but sea increased which made the ship labor hard. Had snow squalls through the day with tremendous gusts of wind — Latter part wind subsided and sea got more regular. Ship on starboard tack, wind from West. This truly is a bad country and I shall be glad to have the weather better or leave it. I am getting nervous and dislike these gales, after such a time I feel sick and good for nothing. During the last one I have not suffered from fear; one can’t think of any greater trouble when they are half crazy with a toothache.”


Mary Lawrence’s husband’s ship, the Addison arrived at her homeport of New Bedford, MA at sunrise on June 14, 1860


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