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Posts related to: shipboard work

Week 06 – a ‘perfect Hurricane’

An oil painting by Washington Allston of ships in a storm at sea, 1804.

On 26 March the John Pirie seemed to be making progress, as it finally cleared the English Channel and struck out for the Atlantic Ocean. But just west of the Bay of Biscay the weather worsened…

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Week 08 – adieu to old England

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 […]

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Week 09 – to sea at last

Model of the ship Duke of York

Clear of the Channel at last, the Duke of York was finally making progress, although conditions were still uncomfortable for the passengers.  Captain Morgan reported that the seas were high and that ‘great quantities’ of water continued to swamp the decks.  This was bad news for those below, who would have been wet, cold and […]

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Week 11 – ‘dangers stand thick all around’

1849 sketch of men bathing on deck.

At long last fair conditions prevail for the travelers and they make good progress.  But danger still stalks the Duke of York. Lucy Beare becomes dangerously ill and almost dies.  Reading…

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Week 14 – steady progress

Image of a ship's chronometer housed in its wooden box

All six ships are making steady progress, sailing south in the Atlantic. The weather is fine and conditions pleasant, but relations on board the John Pirie and the Cygnet are tense. On the John Pirie …

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Week 17 – wet weather and wild tempers

Both the Duke of York and the John Pirie are making good progress, as freshening winds drive the ships forward at speeds of between eight and nine knots The speed of ship or wind in nautical miles per hour. A float is dropped overboard and the speed is indicated by the rate at which the […]

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Week 19 – farewells and new beginnings

This week sees the unhappy passengers and crew of the Cygnet still anchored in Rio Harbour.  While Boyle Travers Finniss chafes under continuing delays, the crew mutinies, refusing all work. …

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Week 20 – infectious disease

The Duke of York is now in the Southern Ocean, making good progress. It is Captain Morgan’s wife’s birthday and he reflects endearingly on his love for her and his happiness in the married state….

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