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Week 03 - Waiting on the wind

[ 6th of March 1836 to 12th of March 1836 ]
[ View related 'school content': Week 03 - Waiting on the wind ]
[ View related 'school content': Week 03 - Communication ]

One week after the storm the Duke of York was still at the Isle of Wight, held there by ‘adverse winds’. Captain Morgan made use of the time to repair the ship and replenish his stores, providing fresh meat for both passengers and crew while he had the chance, but his passengers fretted at the delay.  He also sent two letters, one to his employer, George Fife Angas of the South Australian Company explaining why he was delayed, and one to his wife. A note on the letter to Angas suggests that it was received the next day, which seems amazingly prompt. At a pragmatic level Captain Morgan’s letter reflects the dependence of sailing vessels on favourable wind and tide, but in writing to fellow Christian George Fife Angas, Morgan also emphasises his religious faith, expressing a conventional belief in individual ‘destiny, were [where] we all fulfill our station of life’. Captain Morgan was clearly concerned about the adequacy of the ship’s ‘A coffer is a strongbox for holding valuables and money. It is also a treasury or a fund. Cofer ’, but his principal anxiety remained his more private concern for his wife.  By 12 March, with still no word, he was seriously worried: ‘I tenderly love the partner of my life,’ he wrote in his diary, ‘parting…felt like cutting the tender string of life or the divideing [sic] of vine and branch’.

Ship progress, weeks 2 to 3.

Will the Duke of York manage to get underway again?  And will Captain Morgan learn his wife's fate before he must leave for the other side of the globe? Read on next week.

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