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Title: A narrative of the sufferings, preservation and deliverance, of Capt. John Dean and company - in the Nottingham galley of London, east away on - Boon-Island, near New England, December 11, 1710
Author: Dean, John
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.

*** Start of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "A narrative of the sufferings, preservation and deliverance, of Capt. John Dean and company - in the Nottingham galley of London, east away on - Boon-Island, near New England, December 11, 1710" ***

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[Transcriber's Notes: Original spellings and formatting have been
retained as originally published. Italics are shown as (_italics_).]

                                OF THE
                     Preservation and Deliverance,
                    Capt. _John Dean_ and Company;

         In the _Nottingham Galley_ of _London_, cast away on
       _Boon-Island_, near _New England_, _December, 11, 1710_.

                 [Illustration: Title Page Decoration]

     _London_: Printed by _R. Tookey_, and sold by _S. Popping_ at
     the _Raven_ in _Paternoster-Row_, and at the _Printing Press_
                 under the _Royal-Exchange, Cornhil_.


                   *       *       *       *       *

                          TARRYTOWN, NEW YORK
                            WILLIAM ABBATT,

Being Extra Number 59 of The Magazine of History with Notes and Queries


                                TO THE

A Few Months past, I little expected to appear in Print (especially
on such Occasion) but the frequent Enquiries of many curious Persons
(as also the Design of others, to publish the Account without us) seem
to lay me under an absolute Necessity, least others less acquainted,
prejudice the Truth with an imperfect Relation. Therefore, finding
myself oblig'd to expose this small Treatise to publick View and
Censure, I perswade my self, that what's here recorded will be entirely
credited, by all candid, ingenious Spirits; for whose kind Opinion I am
really sollicitous.

I presume any Person acquainted with my Brother will readily believe
the Truth hereof: And for the Satisfaction of others, I would hope need
only offer, that both his Character and my own may be easily gain'd by
Enquiry. Likewise several of his Fellow Sufferers being now in Town,
their Attestations might be procur'd, if saw a real Necessity.

I have in the whole endeavoer'd a plain smooth, unaffected stile;
suitable to the Occasion, carefully avoiding unnecessary Enlargements,
and relating only Matters of Fact.

I must acknowledge to have (in composing from my Brother's Copy)
omitted many lesser Circumstances, least shou'd swell this Narrative
beyond it's first Design, and thereby exceed the Bounds of common

It's almost needless to intimate what Approbation the Copy has
receiv'd, from many Persons of the most curious and discerning
Judgments who have done me the Favour to view it, urging its
Publication, and (at least) flattering me with an Expectation of a
general Acceptance, considering it both as Novel and Real.

I cannot but also take Encouragement from the Value and Esteem it met
with when appearing under much greater Disadvantages, as to Particulars
and Dress in New England, North Britain, &c. So that adventure it
into the World, to receive its Applause or Censures, according to its
Demerrits or the Fancy of the Reader.

The Account I have receiv'd of those worthy New England Gentlemen's
Kindness to the poor Men in their Extremities, affected me in the most
near and sensible manner, and which to omitt making honourable mention
of, wou'd be the highest Ingratitude (an evil I hope, foreign to my

How generous, Christian-like, and worthy of Immitation, have these
Gentlemen behav'd themselves, to such Objects of Commiseration who must
otherwise (in all Probability) have been render'd unable to serve their
Families (methinks I am glad such a noble compasionate humane Temper
is still found amongst Men) and how happy wou'd it be for us, did this
kind and Publick Spirit more prevail among us, as on the contrary, how
much to be lamented is that barbarous and savage Custom of murdering
fellow Creatures (shipwrackt on our Coasts) in Order to plunder and
rifle them with the greater Ease: A Crime so brutish and agravated (and
yet so frequently practic'd as to be the common Disgrace of a Christian

I might offer Abundance more Thoughts (pertinent enough) on these and
other subjects in this Preface, but I am fearfull lest I shou'd make
the Porch too large for the House; therefore conclude, subscribing my
self (candid Reader) thine in all Friendly Offices,

                                                           JASPER DEAN.

Horsly-Down, August the 2d. 1711.

                                OF THE
                     Preservation and Deliverance
                         Capt. _John Dean_ &c.

The Nottingham Galley, of and from London, 120 Tons, ten Guns,
and fourteen Men, John Dean Commander; having taken in Cordage in
England, and Butter and Cheese, &c. in Ireland, sail'd for Boston in
New England, the 25th of September, 1710. But meeting with contrary
Winds and bad Weather 'twas the Beginning of December when first made
Land to the Eastward of Piscataqua, and haling Southerly for the
Massachuset's-Bay, under a hard gale of Wind at North-East, accompanied
with Rain, Hail and Snow, having no observation for ten or twelve
Days we on the Eleventh handed all our Sails, except our Fore-Sail
and Main-top Sail double reeft, ordering one Hand forward to look
out. Between 8 and 9 going forward myself, I saw the breakers ahead,
whereupon I call'd out to put the Helm hard a Starboard, but ere
the Ship cou'd wear, we struck upon the East End of the Rock called
Boon-Island, four Leagues to the Eastward of Piscataqua.

The second or third Sea heav'd the Ship along Side of it, running
likewise so very high, and the Ship labouring so excessively that we
were not able to stand upon Deck, and notwithstanding it was not above
thirty or forty Yards, yet the Weather was so thick and dark we cou'd
not see the Rock, so that we were justly thrown into a Consternation
at the sad Prospect of immediately perishing in the Sea. I presently
call'd down all Hands to the Cabin, where we continu'd a few Minutes
earnestly supplicating Mercy; but knowing Prayers without Endeavours
are vain, I order'd all up again, to cut the Masts by the board, but
several sunck so under Racks of Conscience that they were not able to
stir. However, we upon deck cut the Weather-most shrouds, and the Ship
heeling towards the Rock, the force of the Sea soon broke the Masts, so
that they fell right towards the Shore.

One of the men went out on the Boltspright, and returning, told me
he saw something black ahead, and wou'd adventure to get on shore,
accompanied with any other Person; upon which I desir'd some of the
best swimmers (my Mate and one more) to go with him, and if they
recover'd the Rock, to give notice by their Calls, and direct us to the
most secure Place; and remembring some money and papers that might be
of use, also Ammunition, Brandy, &c. I went down and open'd the Place
in which they were but the Ship bulging, her decks opening, her back
broke, and beams giving way, so that the Stern sunk almost under water,
I was oblig'd to hasten forward to prevent immediate perishing. And
having heard nothing of the men gone before, concluded them lost; yet
notwithstanding, I was under a necessity to make the same Adventure
upon the Fore Mast, moving gradually forward betwixt every sea, 'till
at last quitting it, I cast myself with all the strength I had toward
the Rock, and it being dead low water and the Rock exceeding slippery
I cou'd get no Hold, but tore my Fingers, Hands and Arms in a most
lamentable Manner; every wash of the sea fetching me off again, so that
it was with the utmost peril and difficulty that I got safe on shore at
last. The rest of the men running the same hazard yet thro' mercy we
all escap'd with our lives.

After endeavouring to discharge the salt-water, and creeping a little
way up the Rock, I heard the three men mentioned before and by ten
all met together; where with joyfull hearts we return'd humble thanks
to Providence for our Deliverance from so eminent a Danger; we then
endeavour'd to gain shelter to the Lee-ward of the Rock, but found it
so small and inconsiderable that it wou'd afford none (being but about
one hundred Yards long, and Fifty broad) and so very craggy, that we
cou'd not walk to keep our selves warm, the weather still continuing
extream cold, with Snow and Rain.

As soon as day-light appear'd, I went towards the place where we came
on shoar, not questioning but we should meet with Provisions enough
from the Wreck for our support, but found only some pieces of the Masts
and Yards, amongst some old junk and cables conger'd, together, which
the Anchors had prevented from being carried away, and kept moving
about the Rock at some distance: Part of the ship's stores with some
pieces of Plank and Timber, old Sails and Canvas &c. drove on shoar
but nothing to eat, except some small pieces of cheese we pick'd up
from among the Rock-Weed (in the whole, to the Quantity of three small

We used our utmost endeavour to get Fire, (having a Steel and Flint
with us, also by a Drill with a very swift motion) but having nothing
but what had been long watersoak'd, we could not effect it.

At night we stow'd one upon another (under our Canvas) in the best
Manner possible, to keep each other warm; and the next day the weather
a little clearing, and inclining to frost, I went out, and seeing the
main Land knew where we was, therefore encouraged my men with hopes of
being discover'd by fishing Shallops &c. requiring them to go about,
and fetch up what planks they could get, (as also Carpenters' Tools
and Stores &c.) in order to build a Tent and a Boat: The cook then
complaining he was allmost starved, and his Countenance discovering his
illness, I ordered him to remain with two or three more the frost had
seiz'd. About noon the Men acquainted me that he was dead, so laid him
in a convenient Place for the Sea to carry him away; none mentioning
eating of him, tho' several with my self afterwards acknowledged, had
Tho'ts of it.

After we had been there two or three Days, the frost being very severe,
and the Weather extream cold, it seized most of our hands and feet to
such a Degree as to take away the Sence of Feeling, and render them
almost useless, so benumbing and discolouring them, as gave us just
reason to fear mortifications. We pull'd off our shoes, and cut off
our boots, but in getting off our stockings, many whose legs were
blister'd, pull'd off Skin and all, and some the nails of their toes;
we wrap'd up our legs and feet as warm as we could in Oakum and Canvas.

We now began to build our tent in a triangular Form, each angle about
eight Foot, covered with what Sails and old Canvas came on shoar,
having just room for all to lie down each on one side, so that none
cou'd turn except all turn'd which was about every two hours, upon
Notice given: We also fix'd a Staff to the top of our Tent, upon which
(as often as weather wou'd permit) we hoisted a piece of cloth in the
Form of a Flag, in order to discover ourselves to any vessels that
might come near.

We began now to build our Boat of plank and timber belonging to the
Wreck; our tools the blade of a cutlass (made into a Saw with our
knives) a Hammer and a Caulking Mallet: Some nails we found in the
clifts of the Rock, others we got from the sheathing; we laid three
Planks flat for the bottom, and two up each Side fix'd to stanchings,
and let into the bottom timbers, with two short Pieces at each end,
also one breadth of new Holland Duck round the sides, to keep out the
Spray of the Sea. We cork'd all we could with oakum drawn from the old
junk, and in other places, fill'd up the distances with long pieces of
Canvas, all which we secured in the best Manner possible; we found also
some Sheet Lead and Pump Leather, which proved of use; we fix'd a short
Mast and square sail, with seven Padles to row, and another longer to
stear; but our Carpenter who now should have been of most use to us,
was (by reason of illness) scarce able to affoard us either assistance
or advice; and all the Rest so benumb'd and feeble as not able to
stir, except my self and two more, also the weather so extream cold,
that we could seldom stay out of the Tent above four hours in the day,
and some days do nothing at all.

When we had been there about a week without any manner of provisions,
except the cheese before mentioned and some beefe bones, which we eat
(first beating them to pieces); we saw three boats about five Leagues
from us, which may be easily imagined rejoyced us not a little,
believing our deliverance was now come: I made all creep out of the
Tent, and hollow together (so well as our strength would allow) making
also all the signals we could, but alas all in vain; they neither
hearing nor otherwise discovering us: however we receiv'd no small
encouragement from the sight of 'em, they coming from S. West, and
the Wind at N. E. when we were cast away, gave us reason to conclude
our distress might be known, by the wreck driving on shoar, and to
presume were come out in search of us, and that they would daily do so
when weather would permit; thus we flatter'd our selves in hopes of
deliverance tho' in vain.

Just before we had finished our boat, Providence so ordered it, that
the Carpenter's Ax was cast on the Rock to us, whereby we were enabled
to compleat our work; but then we had scarce strength enough to get her
into the water.

About the 21st (December) the boat just perfected, a fine day, and the
water smoother than I had ever yet seen it since we came there, we
consulted who shou'd attempt getting on shore, I offering my self as
one to adventure, which they agreed to, because I was the strongest,
and therefore fittest to undergoe the extremities we might be reduc'd
to. My Mate also offering himself, and desiring to accompany me, I
was allow'd him with my brother, and four more, so committing our
enterprize to Divine Providence, all that were able came out, and with
much difficulty we got our poor patch'd up boat to the water side; and
the Surf running very high, was oblig'd to wade very deep to launch
her, which being done, and my self and one more got into her, the
swell of the Sea heav'd her along shore, and overset her upon us,
(whereby we again narrowly escap'd drowning) and stav'd our poor boat
all to peices: Totally disappointing our enterprize and destroying all
our hopes at once.

And as that which still heighten'd our afflictions, and serv'd to
aggravate our miserable prospects, and render our deliverance less
practicable: We lost with our boat, both our Ax and Hammer, which wou'd
have been of great use to us if we should hereafter attempt to build a
Raft, yet had we reason to admire the goodness of God, in over-ruling
our disappointment, for our safety; for that afternoon, the wind
springing up it blew very hard, so that had we been at Sea in that
imitation of a boat, in all probability we must have perish'd, and the
rest left behind had no better fare, because unable to help themselves.

We were now reduc'd to the most deplorable and mallancholy Circumstance
imaginable, almost every Man but myself, weak to an extremity, and
near starved with Hunger and Cold; their Hands and Feet frozen and
mortified, with large and deep ulcers in their legs (the very smell
offensive to those of us, who could creep into the air) and nothing to
dress them with, but a Piece of linnen that was cast on shoar. No Fire,
and the weather extream cold; our small stock of Cheese spent, and
nothing to support our feeble Bodies but Rock-weed and a few Muscles,
scarce and difficult to get (at most, not above two or three for each
man a day). So that we had our miserable bodies perishing, and our
poor disconsolate spirits overpowered, with the deplorable Prospect
of starving, without any appearance of relief: Besides, to heighten
(if possible) the agravation we had reason to apprehend, lest the
approaching Spring-Tide (if accompanied with high winds) should totally
overflow us. How dismal such a circumstance must be, is imposible to
express; the pinching cold and hunger, extremity of weakness and pain,
racks and horror of conscience (to many) and foresight of certain and
painful (but lingring) death, without any (even the most remote) views
of deliverance. How heighten'd! How agravated is such Misery! and yet
alas such was our deplorable Case: insomuch that the greater part of
our company were ready to die with horror and despair, without the
least hopes of escaping.

For my own part, I did my utmost to encourage my self, and exhort
the rest to trust in God and patiently wait for his salvation; and
Providence, a little to aleviate our distress, and encourage our Faith,
directed my Mate to strike down a Sea Gull, which he joyfully brought
to me, and I equally divided every one a proportion; and (tho' raw and
scarce every one a mouthful) yet we received and eat thankfully.

The last method of safety we could possibly propose, was, the fixing a
Raft that might carry two men, which was mightily urged by one of our
men, a Sweed, a stout brave fellow, but had since our distress lost
both his feet by the Frost; he frequently importun'd me, to attempt
our deliverance in that way, offering himself to accompany me, or if I
refused him, to go alone. After deliberate thoughts and consideration,
we resolved upon a Raft, but found abundance of labour and difficulty
in clearing the Fore-Yard (of which it was chiefly to be made) from the
junk, by reason our working hands were so few and weak.

That done, we split the Yard, and with the two parts made side pieces,
fixing others, and adding some of the lightest Plank we cou'd get,
first spiking and afterwards seizing them firm, in breadth four Foot:
We likewise fix'd a Mast, and of two hammocks that were drove on shoar
we made a Sail, with a Paddle for each Man and a spare one in case of
necessity. This difficulty thus surmounted and brought to a period, he
wou'd frequently ask me whether I design'd to accompany him, giving
me also to understand that if I declin'd, there was another ready to
embrace the offer.

About this Time we saw a Sail come out of Piscataqua River, about 7
Leagues to the Westward, we again made all the signal we cou'd, but
the Wind being at N. West, and the ship standing to the Eastward, was
presently out of sight, without ever coming near us, which prov'd a
very great Mortification to our hopes; but the next day being moderate,
and in the afternoon a small Breeze right on shoar, also the Raft wholy
finished, the two men were very solicitous to have it launch'd, and the
Mate as strenuously oppos'd it, on account 'twas so late (being 2 in
the afternoon) but they urging the light nights, beg'd of me to have
it done, to which at last I agreed, first commiting the enterprize to
God's blessing; they both got upon it, and the Swell rowling very high
soon overset them as it did our boat; the Sweed not minding it swam on
shoar, but the other (being no swimmer) contin'd some Time under Water
and as soon as appear'd, I caught hold of him and sav'd him, but was so
discourag'd, that he was afraid to make a second attempt.

I desir'd the Sweed to wait a more favourable oportunity, but he
continuing resolute, beg'd of me to go with him, or help him to turn
the Raft, and would go himself alone.

By this time another man came down and offer'd to adventure, so getting
upon the Raft I launch'd 'em off, they desiring us to go to Prayers,
also to watch what became of them; I did so, and by Sunset judg'd them
half way to the Main, and that they might reach the shoar by 2 in the
morning; but I suppose they fell in with some breakers, or the violence
of the sea overset them and they perish'd; for two Days after, the
Raft was found on shoar, and one man dead about a Mile from it, with a
Paddle fastened to his wrist; but the Sweed who was so very forward to
adventure, was never heard of more.

We upon the desolate Island not knowing what had befallen them, waited
daily for deliverance, and our expectations was the more heightened by
a smoak we saw in the woods, two days after (the Signal appointed if
arriv'd safe) which continuing every day, and being willing to believe
it made on our Account, tho' saw no appearance of any thing towards
our relief, yet suppos'd the delay was occasion'd, by their not being
able to procure a vessel so soon as we desir'd; and this hope under
God, serv'd to bear our spirits and support us much.

But still our great want was Provisions; having nothing to eat but
Rockweed and a very few Muscles, and the Spring-Tide being (thank God
safely over) we cou'd scarce get any at all. I have gone my self (no
other Person being able) several days at low water, and cou'd get no
more than two or three at Piece, and have frequently been in danger of
losing my hands and arms by putting them so often in the water, which
when got, my stomach refus'd, and rather chose Rockweed.

At our first coming saw several Seals upon the Rock, and supposing
they might harbour there in the night, I walked round at midnight, but
cou'd never get any thing: We also saw a great many fowls, but they
perceiving us daily there, wou'd never come on the Rock to lodge, so
that we caught none.

Which disappointment was very greivous and still serv'd to irritate our
miseries, but it was more especially afflicting to a brother I had with
me, and another young Gentleman, who had never (either of 'em) been at
sea, or endur'd any severities before; but were now reduc'd to the last
extreamities, having no assistance but what they receiv'd from me.

Part of a green hide being thrown up by the sea, (fasten'd to a peice
of the Main-Yard) the men importun'd me to bring it to the Tent, which
being done we minc'd it small and swallow'd it down.

About this time, I set the men to open junck, and with the Rope-Yarn
(when weather wou'd permit) I thatcht the Tent in the best Manner
my strength wou'd allow; that it might the better shelter us from
extreamities of weather: And it prov'd of so much service as to turn
two or three Hours' rain, and preserve us from the cold pinching winds
which were always very severe upon us.

About the latter end of this month (viz. December) our Carpenter (a
fat Man, and naturally of a dull, heavy, Phlegmatick Constitution
and Disposition, aged about forty-seven) who from our first coming
on shore, had been always very ill, and lost the use of his feet,
complained of an excessive Pain in his Back, and stiffness in his
Neck: bring likewise almost choakt with phlegm (for want of strength
to discharge it) so that to our aprehension he drew near his End. We
prayed over him, and us'd our utmost endeavours to be serviceable to
him in his last moments; he shew'd himself sensible tho' speechless,
and that night died: We suffered the Body to remain with us 'till
morning, when I desir'd them who were best able, to remove it; creeping
out my self, to see if Providence had yet sent us any thing, to
satisfie our extreamly craving appetites: Before noon returning and
not seeing the dead Body without, I ask'd why they had not remov'd it?
And receiv'd for answer, they were not all of them able: Whereupon
fastening a rope to the Body, I gave the utmost of my assistance, and
with some difficulty we got it out of the Tent. But the fategue and
consideration of our Misery together, so overcame my spirits, that
being ready to faint, I crept into the Tent, and was no sooner got
in there, but (as the highest Addition of trouble) the Men began to
request of me the dead Body to eat, the better to support their Lives.

This, of all I had met with, was the most greivous and shocking to me,
to see my self and Company, who came thither laded with provisions but
three weeks before, now reduc'd to such a deplorable circumstance, as
to have two of us absolutely starv'd to death, other two we knew not
what was become of, and the rest of us at the last Extreamity and (tho'
still living, yet) requiring to eat the Dead for support.

After abundance of mature thought and consultation about the
lawfullness or sinfullness on the one Hand, and absolute Necessity on
the other; Judgment, Conscience, &c. were oblig'd to submit to the
more prevailing arguments of our craving appetites; so that at last
we determined to satisfie our hunger and support our feeble Bodies
with the Carkass in Possession: first ordering his skin, head, hands,
Feet and bowels to be buried in the Sea, and the Body to be quarter'd
for Conveniency of drying and carriage, to which I again receiv'd for
Answer, that they were not all of them able, but entreated I wou'd
perform it for them: A task very greivous, and not readily comply'd
with, but their incessant Prayers and Intreaties at last prevail'd, and
by night I had perform'd my labour.

I then cut part of the flesh in thin Slices, and washing it in
saltwater, brought it to the Tent, and oblig'd the men to eat Rockweed
along with it, to serve instead of bread.

My Mate and two others, refus'd to eat any that night, but next morning
complied, and earnestly desir'd to partake with the rest.

I found they all eat abundance and with the utmost greediness, so that
I was constrain'd to carry the quarters farther from the Tent, (quite
out of their Reach) least they shou'd prejudice themselves by overmuch
eating, as also expend our small stock too soon.

I also limited each Man to an equal Proportion, that none might
quarrel, or entertain hard thoughts of my self, or one another, and
I was the more oblig'd to this method, because I found (in a few
days) their very natural dispositions chang'd, and that affectionate,
peacable temper they had all along hitherto discover'd totally lost;
their eyes staring and looking wild, their Countenances fierce and
barbarous, and instead of obeying my Commands (as they had universally
and readily done before) I found all I cou'd say (even prayers and
entreaties vain and fruitless) nothing now being to be heard but
brutish quarrels, with horrid Oaths and Imprecations, instead of that
quiet submissive spirit of Prayer and supplication we had before

This, together with the dismal prospect of future want, oblig'd me to
keep a strict watch over the rest of the Body, least any of 'em shou'd
(if able) get to it, and this being spent, we be forc'd to feed upon
the living: which we must certainly have done, had we staid a few days

But now the goodness of God began to appear, and make provision for our
deliverance, by putting it in the hearts of the good people on Shore,
where our Raft drove, to come out in search of us; which they did the
2d of January in the morning.

Just as I was creeping out of the Tent, I saw a shallop half way from
shore, standing directly towards us, which may be easily imagin'd was
Life from the Dead; how great our Joys and Satisfaction were, at the
prospect of so speedy and unexpected deliverance, no tongue is able to
express, nor thoughts to conceive.

Our good and welcome friends came to an Anchor to the South West, at
about 100 Yards distance, (the Swell not suffering them to come nearer)
but their anchor coming home, oblig'd them to stand off 'till about
noon, waiting for smoother water upon the Flood: Mean Time our passions
were differently mov'd, our Expectations of Deliverance, and fears of
miscarriage, hurry'd our weak and disorder'd spirits strangely.

I give them account of our miseries in every respect, except the want
of Provisions (which I did not mention, least I shou'd not get them on
shore for fear of being constrain'd by the Weather to tarry with us):
Earnestly entreating them to attempt our immediate deliverance; or at
least (if possible) to furnish us with fire, which with the utmost
hazard and difficulty they at last accomplished, by sending a small
Cannoe with one Man, who with abundance of labour got on shore.

After helping him up with his Canoe, and seeing nothing to eat, I ask'd
him if he cou'd give us Fire, he answer'd in the affirmative, but was
so affrighted, (seeing me look so thin and meagre) that could hardly
at first return me an answer: But recollecting himself, after several
questions asked on both sides, he went with me to the Tent, where was
surpriz'd to see so many of us in so deplorable condition.

Our flesh so wasted, and our looks so ghastly and frightful, that it
was really a very dismal Prospect.

With some difficulty we made a fire, determined to go my self with the
man on board, and after to send for the rest one or two at a time, and
accordingly got both into the Canoe, but the Sea immediately drove it
with such violence against the Rock, that overset us into the water;
and I being very weak, 'twas a great while before cou'd recover my
self, so that I had a very narrow excape from drowning.

The good man with very great difficulty, got on board himself without
me, designing to return the next day with better conveniences if
weather wou'd permit.

'Twas a very uncomfortable sight to see our worthy friends in the
Shallop stand away for the shore without us: But God who orders all
our affairs (by unseen movements) for the best, had doubtless designs
of preservation towards us, in denying us that appearance of present
deliverance: For that night the wind coming about to South-East,
blowing hard and being dark weather, our good friends lost their
Shallop, and with extream difficulty sav'd their lives: But, in all
probability, had we been with them, we must have perish'd, not having
strength sufficient to help ourselves.

Immediately after their getting on shore, they sent an express to
Portsmouth in Piscataqua, where the good people made no delay in
hastening to our deliverance, as soon as weather wou'd allow: But to
our great sorrow, and for further trial of our Patience, the next day
continu'd very stormy, so that, tho' we doubted not but the people on
shore knew our condition, and wou'd assist us as soon as possible,
yet our flesh being near spent, no fresh water, nor any certainty how
long the weather might continue thus, render'd our circumstance still
miserable, tho' much advantag'd by the fire, for now we you'd both warm
our selves, and broil our meat.

The next day our Men urging me vehemently for flesh, I gave them a
little more than usual, but not to their satisfaction, for they wou'd
certainly have eat up the whole at once, had I not carefully watch'd
'em, designing to share the rest next morning if the weather continu'd
bad: But it pleased God that night the wind abated and early next
morning a Shallop came for us, with my much esteemed friends Captain
Long and Captain Purver and three more who brought a large Canoe, and
in two hours time got us all on Board to their Satisfaction and our
great comfort: being forc'd to carry almost all the men on their backs,
from the Tent to the Canoe, and fetch us off by two or three at a time.

When we first came on board the Shallop, each of us eat a bit of bread
and drank a dram of Rum, and most of us were extreamly Sea Sick; but
after we had cleans'd our stomachs, and tasted warm nourishing food,
we became so exceeding hungry and ravenous, that had not our worthy
friends dieted us (and limited the quantity for about two or three
days) we shou'd certainly have destroy'd our selves with eating.

We had also two other vessels came off for our assistance, if there had
been any necessity (so generous and charitable were the good People of
New England, in our distress) but seeing us all on board the shallop
made the best of their way home again.

At eight at night we came on shore, where we were kindly entertain'd,
myself and another at a private house (having Credit sufficient to
help us) all the rest at the charge of the Government who took such
care that the poor men knew not the least want of any thing their
necessitys call'd for or the kind and generous gentlemen cou'd furnish
them with (the care industry and generosity of my much honoured
Friends John Plaisted, Esq., and Captain John Wentworth, in serving
both my self and these poor men being particularly eminent) providing
them a good Surgeon and Nurses till well, bearing the charge, and
afterwards allowing each man sufficient cloathing; having themselves in
the whole with so much Freedom, Generosity and Christian Temper, that
was no small addition to their other services, and render'd the whole
worthy both of admiration and Imitation; and likewise was of the last
consequence to the poor men in their distress.

Two days after we came on shore my apprentice lost a great part of
one foot, the rest all recover'd their limbs, but not their perfect
use. Very few (beside my self) escaping without losing the benefit of
Fingers or Toes, &c. tho' thank God all otherwise in perfect Health;
some sailing one way and some another: my Mate and two or three more
now in England at the Publication hereof.


Having two or three spare Pages, we think it our duty to the truth,
and our selves, to obviate a barbarous and scandalous Reflection,
industriously spread abroad and level'd at our ruine, by some unworthy,
malicious Persons (_viz._) That we having ensur'd more than our Interest
in the Ship _Nottingham_, agreed and willfully lost her, first
designing it in Ireland, and afterwards effecting it at Boon Island.

Such a base and villainous Reflection scarce merrits the Trouble of an
Answer, were not Truth and Reputation so much concern'd: Therefore, as
to the Business of Ireland, 'tis really preposterous (the Commander
not knowing there was one Penny ensur'd) but being chac'd by two large
Privateers, in their Passage North-about to Killibegs, and standing in
betwixt the Islands of Arran and the Main, to prevent being taken; the
Commander and Mr. Whitworth agreed (if it came to the last Extremity)
to run the Ship on Shore and burn her (first escaping themselves and
Men, with what else they cou'd carry in the Boat) rather than be
carry'd into France and lose all. But being near, they recover'd their
Port, and proceeded on their Voyage.

And as for the other Part of the Charge, of willfully losing her at
Boon Island, one wou'd wonder Malice itself cou'd invent or suggest
any thing so ridiculous, and which wou'd certainly be credited by
nobody, that considers the extream Hazards and Difficulties suffer'd by
the Commander himself, as well as his Men, where 'twas more than Ten
Thousand to one, but every Man had perish'd: And wou'd certainly have
chose another Place to have effected it, if we had such a Design: But
alas, what will not vain impotent Malice say, when it intends Injury?
Were the Persons reflecting, but to suffer the like Extreamities (we
can't but think) they'd be feelingly convinc't. But this Matter
speaking so plainly for it self, we think it needless to add more,
therefore proceed to the last part of the Charge (viz.) Ensurance.

We presume Interest only can induce Men to such Villainies, (indeed
that pretended in this Case) therefore to let the World see how little
we gain (or rather how much we lose) by the Matter in Hand, as also
further to expose the malicious and injurious Scandal, we fairly and
voluntarily offer: If any Person can make out that Jasper Dean (who
own'd 7/8 of the said Ship, besides considerable in Cargoe) or Miles
Whitworth (who own'd the other 8th part) or John Dean Commander of the
said Ship, they jointly or separatly, or any others for (or on) their
Accounts, or for their (or any of their) Use or Advantage, directly or
indirectly, or they (or any of them,) for the Use or Benefit of any
others, in any Manner whatsoever, have ensur'd or caus'd to be ensur'd,
in Britain or elsewhere, any more than £250 to Ireland (which was not
paid the Ship arriving safe) and £300 from these to Boston in New
England (which paid, and Premium and Office Charges deducted, was no
more than 226£ 17s) if any Person can make out more, they are desired
to publish it by Way of Advertisement in some common News Paper and we
undernam'd do hereby promise to make the utmost Satisfaction, and stand
convict to be the greatest Villains in the Universe.

And now, let the World judge whether 'tis reasonable to imagine we
shou'd willfully lose a good Ship of 120 Tuns, besides a valuable
Interest in Cargoe in such a Place, where the Commander (as well as the
Rest) must unavoidably run the utmost Hazard of perishing in the most
miserable Manner, and all this to recover £226. 17s. how absurd and
ridiculous is such a Supposition, and yet this is the Reproach we at
present labour under, so far as to receive daily ignominious Scandals
upon our Reputations, and injurious Affronts and Mobbings to our Faces.
Yet we solemnly profess, we are not conscious of the least Guilt, nor
even in this Account, of the least Errours in Representation.

                                                        JASPER DEAN
                                                        JOHN DEAN
                                                        MILES WHITWORTH
                                                        (_lately dead_)


*** End of this LibraryBlog Digital Book "A narrative of the sufferings, preservation and deliverance, of Capt. John Dean and company - in the Nottingham galley of London, east away on - Boon-Island, near New England, December 11, 1710" ***

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