The Journey to St. Jago

—From this place we set sail with our cargo about the middle of June 1813, for New Bedford, where we arrived in fifty-seven days. When off Block Island we saw the keel of a brig, upon which were marked the names of a number of persons who undoubtedly belonged to her and had died upon the wreck.

We were about five days unloading ship, after which the hands were paid off and discharged. After this I went again to visit my parents at Westport, where I stayed but two weeks before I went to Philadelphia across land, and shipped aboard the Dorothea, a Letter of Marque brig, Captain Aaron Pitney, bound to St. Jago, loaded with flour and hoop-poles. This brig mounted ten guns. When out two days we fell in with an English brig of ten guns, to which we gave chase, and fought her for about two hours, when she got away from us, we being unable to gain upon her in consequence of having our rigging badly cut to pieces. In this action we lost two men killed and the Captain badly wounded.

About three days after the above action, about 4 o’clock A.M., we discovered an English frigate, which gave chase to us, and fired several guns, none of which reached us. This vessel we outsailed and left far behind by 2 o’clock P.M. Eight days after this chase, we reached St. Jago, and discharged our freight. Here we tarried three weeks and sold the brig to a Spanish gentleman. We then took passage in the American schooner Mary, bound to Alexandria, in the District of Columbia, upon the river Thames. This vessel had been trading under an English license, and had been taken by the schooner Rollo of Baltimore. Her captors were sending her home as a prize. Of this we were not made acquainted until we had got out to sea. When we set sail, we had nine men sick with the yellow fever, six of whom died and were consigned to the vasty deep, after the usual ceremony of the reading of prayers…


Go Back

Keep reading