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Title: A True Account of the Voyage of the Nottingham-Galley of London,

Author: Christopher Langman

Nicholas Mellen

sailor on the Nottingham galley George White

Release date: August 10, 2016 [eBook #52769]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Leonardo Palladino and the Online Distributed
Proofreading Team at (This file was
produced from images generously made available by The
Internet Archive)


Nottingham-Galley of London,
John Dean Commander,
River Thames to New-England,

Near which Place she was cast away on Boon-Island, December 11, 1710. by the Captain's Obstinacy, who endeavour'd to betray her to the French, or run her ashore; with an Account of the Falsehoods in the Captain's Narrative.

And a faithful Relation of the Extremities the Company was reduc'd to for Twenty-four Days on that desolate Rock, where they were forc'd to eat one of their Companions who died, but were at last wonderfully deliver'd.

The whole attested upon Oath, by

Christopher Langman, Mate;
Nicholas Mellen, Boatswain; and
George White, Sailor in the said Ship.

LONDON: Printed for S. Popping at the Raven in Pater-noster-Row, 1711. (Price Six Pence.)


We having been Sufferers in this unfortunate Voyage, had reason to believe, from the Temper of our Captain, who treated us barbarously both by Sea and Land, that he would misrepresent the Matter, as we now find he has done in a late Pamphlet by him publish'd, intituled, A Narrative of the Sufferings, Preservation, and Deliverance of Captain John Dean, and Company, in the Nottingham Galley of London, &c. London, Printed by R. Tooky, and Sold by S. Popping at the Raven in Pater-noster-Row, and at the Printing Press under the Royal-Exchange.

Our Apprehensions of this made us refuse the Encouragement which was offered us in New England, and resolve to come home that we might have an Opportunity to lay before the World, and before those Gentlemen and others who have lost their Estates and Relations in this unhappy Voyage, the true Causes of our own and their Misfortunes, and how they might, humanely speaking, have been easily avoided, had Captain Dean been either an honest or an able Commander. This we think ourselves oblig'd to do in common Justice, and to prevent others from suffering by him in the like manner.

We cannot but in the first place take notice of a notorious Falshood he asserts in his Preface. That he might have had the Attestation of several of his Fellow Sufferers now in Town to the Truth of what he has wrote, since he very well knows that Two of us did positively refuse it in publick Company, after reading a part of it, and told him to his Face, that it was not true.

In the next place, as to what he says of the Encouragement his Narrative met with in New England and North Britain, where it appeared under much greater Disadvantages as to the Particulars and Dress, We think fit to reply, That the Acceptance it met with in New England was occasion'd by our being confined from appearing in publick during our Sickness, and that he compell'd us to sign what our Illness made us uncapable to understand; but when it pleas'd God that we recover'd our Health, and made our Affidavits here subjoin'd before Mr. Penhallow, a Justice of Peace, and Member of Council at Portsmouth in the Province of New Hampshire, New England, in the Presence of the said Dean, who had not the Face to deny it, his Character appear'd in a true Light, and he was cover'd with Shame and Confusion.

The Captain has reason indeed to commend the Charity of the Gentlemen of New England, which is no more than their due, both from him and us, tho' we were unhappily deprived of the chief Effects of it by the Captain's Brother; who being the Person that received it, took care not to be wanting to the Captain and himself, whereas we had nothing but what was fit for such miserable Wretches, who were glad of any thing, since we were then uncapable of working for better.

As to what he says in his Postscript about Insurance, we know nothing further of that matter than what we heard on Board, as will appear by our Narrative, viz. That there were great Sums insured upon the Ship, the truth of which is more proper for the Inquiry of others than us who are only Sailors.

We come now to the Narrative, wherein we shall represent nothing but the Truth, of which we our selves had the Misfortune to be Witnesses, to our great Sorrow, and the manifest Danger of our Lives.

And since what we deliver is upon Oath, we hope it will obtain Credit sooner than the bare Word of Captain Dean, his Brother, and Mr. Whitworth, who were all Three interested Persons, and but One of them acquainted with all the Matter of Fact, which for his own Reputation and Safety he has been obliged to set off in false Colours. Besides, Mr. Whitworth is since dead, so that the Captain has no Vouchers but himself and his Brother; and how little Credit they deserve will sufficiently appear by what follows.

[Pg 1]


The Nottingham-Galley of 120 Tons, 10 Guns, and 14 Men, John Dean Commander, took in part of her Lading in the River Thames, which was Cordage, and the rest in Butter and Cheese, at Killybags in Ireland. But Captain Dean in his Narrative has omitted to acquaint the World that 4 of the Guns were useless, and that not above 6 of the Men were capable to Serve in the Ship, in case of bad Weather. She Sail'd from Gravesend the 2d Day of August, 1710. to the Nore, and from thence on the 7th, with 2 Men of War, and several Merchant-Men under their Convoy, towards Scotland. When we came off of Whitby, the Fleet brought to, and several of the Ships were a-stern. We having a fine Gale, the Captain said he would Run it, and make the best of his way for Ireland,[Pg 2] which we did. And when we were on that Coast, the 12th of August, we saw 2 Ships in a Bay, towards whom the Captain would have bore down, but the Men would not consent to it, because they perceiv'd them to be French Men of War. Upon this we stood off to Sea till 12 at Night; when the Captain coming upon Deck, we Sail'd easily in towards the Shore, by the Mate's Advice, till Daylight, and came so near Land that we were forced to stand off. The next Day we saw the two Privateers again, and the Captain propos'd to stand down towards them, or to come to an Anchor; but the Mate and the Men oppos'd it. The Captain was seconded in this by Charles Whitworth the Merchant, who said in the hearing of the Boatswain, and others, That he had rather be taken than otherwise, tho' he had an Eighth Part of the Ship, because he had Insured 200 l. And the Captain said, He had rather run the Ship ashore than perform his Voyage, if he thought he could be safe with the Insurers, because his Brother had insur'd 300 l. upon her. Accordingly he put in towards the Shore, to find out a proper Place for that purpose, and ordered the Boatswain to get the Tackle upon the Boat[Pg 3] and hoist her overside, that she might be in readiness to go ashore. At the same time the Captain and Charles Whitworth went to the Cabbin to get out the best of their Goods in order to carry them with them; and putting them up in a Chest, commanded the Men to carry them into the Boat, which they did. The Captain promis'd that we should want for nothing, and resolv'd to go ashore; so that we all plainly saw he was resolv'd to lose the Ship. But he was opposed by the Mate Christopher Langman, who wrought the Vessel through between the Main and an Island, and she arriv'd safely at Killybags in Ireland that same night.

We took in the rest of our Lading there the 25th of September, being 30 Tons of Butter, and above 300 Cheeses, and sail'd for Boston in New-England; which we were very uncapable to do, because the Captain, by his barbarous Treatment of our Men, had disabled several of 'em, and particularly two of our best Sailors were so unmercifully beat by him, because they oppos'd his Design abovemention'd, that they were not able to work in a Month. This gave us a very melancholy Prospect of an unfortunate Voyage, since we perceiv'd[Pg 4] he would either lose the Ship, or betray her to the French, because she was insured for much above the Value. Besides, he put us to short Allowance, so that we had but one Quart of Water per Head in twenty four Hours, and had nothing to eat but salt Beef, which made us so dry that we were forc'd to drink the Rain Water that run off the Deck. And the Captain was so barbarous that he knock'd down one of our Men for dead, because when he found the Hold open, he went and drew a Gallon of Water to quench our Thirst. In the mean time he wanted nothing himself, tho' he pretended to us that he confin'd himself also to short Allowance, yet we knew the contrary.

When we came to the Banks of Newfoundland we saw a Ship which made all the Sail she could towards us, and soon came up with us. The Captain and Mr. Whitworth hoping she was a Frenchman, put on their best Apparel, and gave us as much strong Beer and Brandy as we could drink: But it prov'd to be the Pompey Galley of London, Captain Den Commander, at which we rejoic'd, tho' our Captain was melancholy. We continu'd our Course towards New England; and[Pg 5] the first Land we made was Cape Sables, which is about 50 Leagues from Boston in that Country.

We made the best of our way for that Port, but the Wind blew hard, so that we were several Days without sight of Land, and were forced to hand all our Sails, and lie under our Mizzen-Ballast till Daylight; when the Boatswain having the Morning Watch discover'd Land to the Leeward, with which he acquainted the Captain and the Mate, who both came upon Deck. The Captain said that was the first Land we had made, wherein he was justly contradicted by the Mate, which caus'd some Words between 'em: For in Truth we made Cape Sables a Week before; and if we had kept our Course then, according to the Opinion of the Mate and Ship's Company, we had, in all Probability, arriv'd safe the next Day at Boston, but the Master laying the Ship by, and the next Day proving moderate Weather, and the Wind coming to the West, we stood away to the North, and so it was a Week before we made Cape Porpus, which was the same Day we were lost; so untrue is it what the Captain says, that the first Land we made was to the East of Piscataqua.[Pg 6] After those Words had pass'd with the Mate, the Captain went down to serve us with Water, according to Custom, and in the mean time the Captain's Brother took a Bottle of Water from the Mate, and struck him; upon which the Captain coming out of the Hold, he took up a Perriwig Block, with which he came behind the Mate, and struck him three Blows on the Head, upon which he fell down and lay as dead for several Minutes, all in Blood. This was very discouraging to the Seamen, who durst not speak to him for fear of the like Treatment. Soon after this barbarous Action we perceiv'd the Ship in Danger by being so near Land; upon which the Boatswain being on the Watch call'd the Captain, and the Mate, who being scarce recovered came on the Deck all in Gore, and told the Captain he had no Business so near the Land, except he had a Mind to lose the Ship, and therefore desir'd him to hawl further off, or else he would be ashore that Night. The Captain answer'd, That he wou'd not take his Advice though the Ship should go to the Bottom, threatned to shoot the Mate with a Pistol, and told him, he would do what he pleas'd except they confin'd him to[Pg 7] his Cabbin. It fell out according as the Mate had said; we run ashoar that Night, being the 11th of December, between 8 and 9 a Clock, when the Ship struck upon Boon Island, a Rock three or four Leagues East from Piscataqua. And here the Captain is false again in his Narrative, when he says p. 2. that he saw the Breakers ahead, upon which he call'd out to put the Helm hard on the Starboard; for he was then undressing himself to go to Bed, according to his usual Custom. When the Ship struck, the Boatswain told the Captain, he had made his Words good, and lost the Ship on purpose, whereas had he taken the Mate's Advice, he might in all probability have been safe at Boston Ten Days before. The Captain bid him hold his Peace, He was sorry for what had happen'd, but we must now all prepare for Death, there being no Probability to escape it. Upon this several of our Men went on the Deck, but cou'd not stay there, because the Sea broke in all over the Ship. Then the Captain, who had been Cursing and Swearing before, began to cry and howl for Fear of losing his Life. The Boatswain and another went into the Hold to see if there was any Water there, and finding there[Pg 8] was, we went all into the Cabbin to Prayers, being in hopes the Ship would lie whole till Daylight. Soon after this the Mate, though hardly able, went with some others above Deck; for this Surprize made him forget his Pain. He spoke to the Captain, and told him, It was his Business to encourage the Men, and not to dishearten them: Yet still he insisted it was impossible for us to save our Lives. However, the Mate with three others cut down the Main-Mast and Fore-Mast, which by God's Assistance prov'd the Means of our Preservation; for the Fore-Mast fell on the Rock with one End, and the other rested on the Ship. The Mate went afterwards into the Cabbin, and desired the Captain to use his Endeavours to save the Men, for the Ship would immediately sink, and it was not time to think of saving any thing, but to get ashore as light as we cou'd. By this Time the Water came out of the Hold, and the Sea beat over the Deck, so that there was no standing upon it. The Mate got first on the Mast, and with great Difficulty escap'd to the Rock. He was follow'd by two others, who likewise got on Shore, but were scarce able to stand on the Rock, from whence they hallow'd[Pg 9] to us to follow them, and we not hearing them any more than once, were afraid they were wash'd off by the Waves. This put us into a mighty Consternation, so that we knew not whether it were best to follow them, or to stay on board till it was Day. The Captain was for the latter; but it being dead low Water, the Tide of Flood coming on, and the Wind beginning to blow hard, the Sea beat into the Cabbin while we were at Prayers, which forced us to go upon Deck: Some more of our Men escap'd to the Shore by help of the Mast, as the others had done, and call'd to us to make haste and follow them, which we did, and by the Blessing of God got safe to the Rock, though not without much Danger, being forced to crawl upon our Hands and Knees we were so heavy with Water, and the Rock so slippery.

Here again the Captain is false in the second Page of his Narrative; for he neither call'd us down to Prayers, nor order'd us up again, nor did he either command or assist at cutting down the Mast. We know not whom he points at, where he says, several of the Company did so sink under Racks of Conscience, that they[Pg 10] were not able to stir; for he himself had as great Reason to be under Terror of Conscience as any Man, since he was the Cause of all our Misfortunes. Accordingly he cryed heartily, and begg'd the Mate to do what he cou'd to save us, for he himself cou'd do nothing. Nor was the Captain ever upon the Deck but once, when he held by the Long-Boat, cryed out, and presently went down again, which greatly discouraged us, so that had it not been for the Mate, &c. who cut down the Shrowds, &c. as abovemention'd, we had all perish'd. He is also unjust to the Mate in his third Page, where he says, That one of the Men went out on the Boltsprit, and returning, told the Captain he saw something black ahead, and would adventure to get on Shore, accompanied with any other Person; upon which the Captain pretends he desired some of his best Swimmers, the Mate and one more, to go with him, and if they recover'd the Rock, to give Notice by their Calls, and direct the rest to the most secure Place; for it was the Mate who went on the Boltsprit and discover'd the Land. After which he desired the Captain and the rest to go ashore before he attempted it himself; but finding[Pg 11] them all dead-hearted, the Mate, who cou'd not swim, as the Captain alledges, got on Shore by the Mast as abovemention'd. The Captain is also false in asserting that he attempted to save his Money, Brandy, Ammunition, &c. for our Relief, since he had not the Value of one Guinea aboard in Money. It is equally false that he tore his Arms and Fingers in such a lamentable manner in climbing up the Rock; for not one Man was hurt in getting ashore. Nor was the Captain in danger of being wash'd off from the Yard, the Water there being no deeper than our Middle.

When we got ashore we found it to be a desolate small Island, without any Shelter; and being wet, and having but few Clothes, some began to despair of being able to live there till the Morning; and besides, we were not certain but it might be over flow'd at high Tide. We comforted our selves however, the best we cou'd, and though we expected to perish there, return'd God Thanks for giving us some more Time to repent. In this dismal Condition we continued till next Morning, without any thing to refresh us: But being in hopes that the Wreck would remain[Pg 12] till Daylight, and that we might recover some of our Provisions, we sent a Man down to see what was become of her, but he brought us Word that he cou'd see nothing of her. When Daylight came we went to look for the Wreck in a cold and hungry Condition; but found nothing except one half Cheese, entangled in a Piece of a Rope, and this we equally distributed among us. Soon after we found a Piece of fine Linnen and Canvas, of which we endeavour'd to make a Tent, and effected it at last by the help of the Boatswain the second Day, and this preserv'd us from being all frozen to Death, as our Cook was in a little Time to our very great Grief, since we look'd upon it as a certain Presage that we should all have the same Fate. We carried the Corpse to the Seaside, from whence it was soon wash'd off by the Flood. Here the Captain publishes another Falshood in his fifth Page, when he says he knew where he was; for he declared to us that he knew not: Nor is there any more Truth in the Compassion he there alledges that he shew'd to the Cook when he was a dying.

[Pg 13]

When the Weather clear'd we discover'd the main Land, which we suppos'd to be about a League from us. This fill'd us with Hopes that by the Providence of God we should soon be deliver'd, for which we return'd him Thanks, and immediately set about building a Boat out of part of the Wreck which was drove ashore, and heartily pray'd, that God would give us Success. We were so cold, hungry and feeble, that it was scarce possible for us to do any thing, nor could we walk on the Rock in order to keep us warm, it was so craggy, uneven and slippery. We made shift however to finish our Boat, the Bottom of which was made of Three Planks, and the Side was Half a Plank High. We cork'd and lin'd it with Canvas the best we could, and made it about Twelve Foot Long and Four Foot Wide, thinking it sufficient to hold Six of us.

After this some Controversie happen'd who the Six should be. The Carpenter pleaded his Right to be one, because he built it; the Captain pleaded to be another, which was agreed to; and the Boatswain was thought fit to be one, because he spoke the Indian Language; but at last[Pg 14] it was concluded that the Mate, the Captain's Brother, Charles Whitworth, and George White, should be the Men; and we carried the Boat to the Shore, where we launch'd her, putting on Board such of the Carpenter's Tools as we had sav'd from the Wreck, in order to build a better when we came on Shore. We begg'd the Assistance and Direction of God, and some of our Company went into the Boat, taking leave of the rest, and promising to bring them Relief as soon as possible. But the Boat overset, by which our Men were almost drown'd, and narrowly escaped again to the Rock. The Boatswain held the Boat almost an Hour with a Rope in hopes to save her till the Weather grew more calm, and the Gunner came to his Assistance, but soon after she was stav'd to pieces, which was a great Mortification to us. We thank'd God however that he was pleas'd again to preserve so many of us, tho' the Time for our Relief was not yet come. The Captain is out in his Account, pag. 7. when he says, our Boat had a Mast and a Sail, for she had neither.

[Pg 15]

The Wind blowing hard, and there being a great Snow, we betook our selves to Prayer, and earnestly begg'd that God would have mercy on us, and consider our deplorable Condition. Being wet with our Endeavours to launch the Boat, our Cloaths freezed to our Backs, which proved fatal to our Carpenter, who died a few Days after. The next Day prov'd fair Weather, so that we could see the Houses on the main Land, and several Boats rowing to and fro, which rejoyc'd us very much; and after praying that God might direct some of them to us, we shew'd our selves on several Places of the Rock, and hallow'd to them, but they could not hear us. This quite discourag'd us again, for we had no Provisions but some small pieces of Cheese, four or five pieces of Beef, and one Neats Tongue that we recover'd out of the Wreck, and a small quantity of this was distributed among us every Morning when we went round the Rock to see if it would please God to send us any further Provisions. At last George White, one of our Number, found some Muscles at Low Water, for which we return'd God Thanks, and we found about as many for two or three days[Pg 16] as six or seven came to each Man's share; but the Weather was so cold, and the Tides fell out so late in the Night that we could get no more. The Captain then told us, We must shift for our selves, there being nothing now for us to trust to but the Mercies of God. There being a piece of a Cows Hide on the Fore Yard of the Wreck, we cut it into small pieces and swallow'd it down, which reviv'd us a little. Some of our Company got Sea Weed, which was also shar'd among us, and this was all the Entertainment we had for several Days; but still we liv'd in hopes of being deliver'd from this dismal Place; and the Captain told us, If we were, he would sell the Cables, Anchors and Guns that were cast ashore, for our Maintenance. In this Distress our Mate perceiving a large Sea Gull in a Hole of the Rock, he knock'd it down with the Handle of a Sawce Pan, brought her into the Tent, and shar'd her among us, to our great Relief.

Perceiving no hopes of any Boats coming to us, a stout Dutchman, one of our Company, propos'd the making of a Raft, and proffer'd to endeavour to get ashore with it himself, if no body else would.[Pg 17] This Proposal being well relish'd, such of us as were able clear'd the Fore Yard of the Rigging with a great deal of Trouble, for want of sufficient Strength and necessary Instruments; and having split it in two to make the Sides of the Raft, and fastning the End pieces with Nails, we put a Plank in the Middle, with a Mast, and a Sail made of two Hammocks, and accordingly launch'd her, with George White and the Dutchman upon it, giving them Orders, if they got ashore, to acquaint the People with our Distress, and to beg their hastening to our Assistance. But the Raft overset, by which the Men were almost drown'd, so that none would venture upon it again except the Dutchman and another. We pray'd heartily for their Success, and saw them paddle along till the Sun was down, and they appear'd to us to be so near the Shore, that we hoped they might Land safely.

That Night it blew very hard, and the next Day our Carpenter died as abovemention'd, and in the Morning we hawl'd him out of the Tent. That same Day the Captain and George White went out to see what they could find, but return'd empty handed.

[Pg 18]

Upon this the Captain propos'd the fleying and eating of the Carpenter's dead Body, and told us, It was no Sin, since God was pleas'd to take him out of the World and that we had not laid violent Hands upon him. He ask'd the Boatswain to help to skin and cut him up, which he refus'd because of his Weakness; whereupon one Charles Gray help'd the Captain to do it, and brought in several pieces of the Corps into the Tent, where some of our Men eat of it; but the Mate, the Boatswain, and George White would not touch any of it till next Day that they were forced to it by Extremity of Hunger.

Here the Captain is guilty of several Heads, and particularly pag. 11, &c. for he was so far from offering to go ashore on the Raft, that he said, Let who will go, 'twas all one to him. Nor did the Dutchman or Swede ever desire the Captain to go with him or help him to turn the Raft; nor did the Captain assist George White to get ashore when he was overset in the Raft. It is likewise false, that the other Man who went off in the Raft was found dead with a Paddle fastned to his Wrist, for his Corps was found about 300 Yards from the Shore, and no Paddle to his[Pg 19] Wrist. 'Tis likewise false, that the Captain went several times out alone to look for Provisions, for George White was always with him. Nor is it true, that the piece of Cow's Hide beforemention'd was brought into the Tent by the Captain's Order, for George White brought it without his Knowledge. It is likewise false, that the Men first requested the Carpenter's dead Body of the Captain to eat, for he himself was the first that propos'd it, and the Three Deponents refus'd to eat any of it until the next Morning that the Captain brought in some of his Liver and intreated 'em to eat of it; so that the Captain's Pretensions of being moved with Horror at the Thoughts of it, are false, for there was no Man that eat more of the Corps than himself. It is likewise false, that any of the Men removed the dead Body from the Place where they laid it at first. It is also untrue, that the Captain order'd his Skin, Head, Hands, &c. to be buried in the Sea, for these we left on the Island when we came off. Nor is there any more Truth in the Care which the Captain ascribes to himself, in hindring us to eat too much of the Corps lest it should prejudice our Health, for we all agreed, the[Pg 20] Night before we come off, to limit our selves, lest our Deliverers should be detain'd from coming to us. And as to our Tempers being alter'd after the eating of humane Flesh, as the Captain charges us, p. 16. we can safely declare, that tho' he says, There was nothing to be heard among us but brutish Quarrels, with horrid Oaths and Imprecations, all the Oaths we heard were between the Captain, his Brother, and Mr. Whitworth, who often quarrel'd about their Lying and Eating. And whereas the Captain often went to Prayers with us before we had the Corps to eat, he never, to our hearing, pray'd afterwards, but behav'd himself so impiously, that he was many times rebuked by the Mate and others for profane Swearing.

Having agreed with the Men we sent off on the Raft, that they should kindle a Fire if they got safe on Shore, we were rejoic'd upon the sight of a Smoke, hoping that had been the Signal they promis'd, but it was not. Soon after that we perceiv'd a Boat coming towards us, which made our Hearts leap for Joy, and we return'd Thanks to God for the Prospect of a speedy Deliverance. The Boat came to an Anchor along the side of the Rock, but[Pg 21] could not get ashore; and we call'd to 'em for Fire, which the Master sent us by one of his Men in a small Canoe, but no Provisions. This was the 22d Day after we had been on this desolate Rock, so that the Man was frighten'd at the sight of so dismal a Spectacle. We all got about him, and cryed for Joy. He told us, that the Reason of their coming to the Rock to see for us, was their finding a Raft on the Shore, with one Man frozen to Death about Two or Three Hundred Yards from it, but they heard nor saw nothing of the other, from whence 'twas supposed that the Man found dead ashore having landed there in the Night Time, and not knowing where to go, he was frozen to Death under a Tree where they found him. After this Discourse, our Captain went to go off in the Boat, but it overset, so that we were forc'd to take up the Canoe, and carry it all over the Rock, to seek for a smooth Place to put her off again, which we did after the Man had staid with us Two or Three Hours. He promised to come with a better Boat to carry us off, but lost his Vessel as he came near the Shore, and narrowly escaped with his own and his Mens[Pg 22] Lives; upon which he sent an Express to Piscataqua for Relief to us. This Night we had a prodigious Storm, but kept a great Fire, which was seen on the Shore, and prov'd very comfortable to us, both for its Warmth, and by Broiling Part of the Dead Corps, which made it eat with less Disgust.

The next Day it blowed very fresh, so that no Relief could come to us; but on the 4th of January in the Morning, the Weather being fair, several Sloops came towards us, and one Canoe came ashore with Four Men, Two of which were Captain Long and Captain Forbe, Commanders of Ships, and soon carried us all off on board their Vessel; for several of us had our Legs so frozen, and were so weak that we could not walk. These Gentlemen took great Care of us, and would not suffer us to eat or drink but a little at a time, lest it should do us hurt. Night we arrived at Piscataqua in New England, where we were all provided for, and had a Doctor appointed to look after us. We were Ten who came ashore. Two of us having died on the Island, and Two being lost that were sent off on the Raft. The Names of those that were sav'd[Pg 23] are John Dean, Captain; Christopher Langman, Mate; Christopher Gray, Gunner; Nicholas Mellan, Boatswain; George White, Charles Whitworth, Henry Dean, Charles Graystock, William Saver, and the Captain's Boy, who had Part of his Foot cut off to prevent a Mortification, and several others were lame. Thus we were delivered by the Goodness of God (for which we praise his Name) after we had been Twenty Four Days upon that Desolate Island in the Distress abovementioned, having nothing to shelter us but a sorry Tent that could not keep us from wet, and was once in Danger of being carryed off by the high Tide, which obliged us to remove it to the highest Part of the Rock. We had nothing to lie on but the Stones, and very few Cloathes to cover us; which, together with our Hunger, made our Lives a Burden to us.

Some Days after our Arrival, the Captain drew up a Protest, which was sign'd by the Mate, being then very ill of a Flux and Fever; and also by the Boatswain Geo. White, who was also ill, and declared that he did it for fear of being put out of his Lodgings by the Captain, while he was both sick and lame. But as soon[Pg 24] as the Deponents recover'd, they declar'd the Captain's Protest to be false, &c. as may be seen by the Depositions hereunto annex'd.

The Captain falsly ascribes to himself, p. 17, the first Discovery of the Sloop that came to relieve us, whereas it was first discover'd by Christopher Gray, the Gunner, he being sent out on purpose by the Mate, who the Night before had dreamt of the Sloop's Arrival. The Captain likewise falsly magnifies his own Danger of being drowned, when the Canoe was overset, since the Water then was scarce half a Yard deep; and instead of being thankful to God for his own and our Deliverance, he returned with the Dog to his Vomit, and behav'd himself so brutishly, that his Friend Captain Purver was obliged to turn him out of his House. He was so little sensible of the Merciful Deliverance from the Danger he had escaped, that he barbarously told the Children in his Lodging, he would have made a Frigasy of them if he had had 'em in Boon Island; which frighten'd the People that heard him, and made them esteem him a Brute, as he was. He likewise wrong'd us of what the Good People gave us towards[Pg 25] our Relief, and applyed it to his own and his Brother's Use; and particularly when Captain John Wentworth gave several of our Men good Cloaths, Captain Dean came and order'd them the worst that could be had, and was likewise so barbarous as to get us turn'd out of our Lodgings, before we were able to shift for our selves.

All this we avouch to be Truth, and have no other End in publishing it, but to testify our Thankfulness to God for his Great Deliverance, and to give others Warning not to trust their Lives or Estates in the Hands of so wicked and brutish a Man.

For the Truth of what we have deliver'd, we refer to the Affidavits subjoined, which we made concerning this Matter both in New England, and since our Arrival at London.

[Pg 26]

An Account of our intended Voyage, and some Accidents that happen'd therein from the River of Thames to Ireland, in the Nottingham-Galley, John Dean Master.

August the 7th, 1710. we sail'd from the Nore in company with her Majesty's Ship Sheerness, she then being appointed a Convoy for the North Britain Fleet, which we parted from off of Whitby, and made the best of our Way.

The 21st ditto we saw two Sail, and that they gave chace to us, they being to the Leeward of us about Three Leagues. It being then the Master's Watch on the Deck, he called the Mate, and told him, That he saw Two Privateers. As soon as[Pg 27] the Mate came on the Deck, he desired the Master to run in Shore to the Windward of the Island of Arran, we then being about Two Leagues to the Windward of it. But the said Master would have gone in to Leeward, which we could not have done without speaking with the aforesaid Ships; and he proposed it several times; but the Mate nor none of the Ship's Company would consent to it, but told him, That if he did, we could not possibly escape the Enemy. Charles Whitworth then said in the hearing of the Boatswain and some others of the Ship's Company, That he had rather be taken than not, for he had Two Hundred Pounds Insured; he having an Eighth Part of the Ship, as he said.

The Master the next Day would have gone ashore and left the Ship, and put a Chest and several other things in the Boat. The Mate told him, That he would not consent to any such Thing, for he then saw no Danger of being Taken, and told the said Master, That it was early in the Morning, and but Seven Leagues from our Port, and a fair Wind to run along the Shore. The said Master was then heard to say by the Boatswain and several of the Ship's Company,[Pg 28] That if he thought the Insurance would be paid, he would immediately run her ashore. So that we all plainly saw that he was willing to lose the said Ship. The Mate told him, That if he would, by God's Assistance he might fetch his Port before Night, if he would make Sail; but he had a Design to give the Ship away, he might. The said Master found the Mate was not willing to what he proposed, and that he could not obtain his Desire, he made Sail, and about Six or Seven in the Evening we arrived at our desired Port Killybags, where we took in 30 Tons of Butter and 300 and odd Cheeses.

September 25, 1710. we sail'd from this Port, bound for Boston in New England.

December 11, 1710. we being then on the Coast of New England, and close on Board of Cape Porpus, the Mate told him, That he did not know any business we had so nigh the Shore, and that it was his better way to hawl further to the Southward. The said Master would not take his Advice if the Ship went to the Bottom.

At or about Eight this Morning the said Master came to the Mate and knock'd him down with a Block, such as Barbers make Wigs on. We all thought that he had[Pg 29] kill'd him, for he lay dead some time, and lost a great deal of Blood.

Between Eight and Nine this Night the Ship run ashore, the Wind at E. S. E. and a moderate Gale. The Mate being then in his Cabbin, and hardly done bleeding, got on the Deck, tho' badly able, and ordered the Masts to be cut away, which we did, and by God's Assistance got all ashore, it being a desolate Land, about Three Leagues from the Main. We then steer'd W. and by S. so that if we had miss'd it we should have run ashore on the Main. This Island is called by the Name of Boon Island. We remained on it Twenty-four Days, and suffered a great deal of Hardship; at which time we were fetched off by a Piscataqua Boat, and carried ashore.

Some Days after the Master drew up a Protest, which the Mate and Boatswain signed, the Mate being then very ill with a Flux and Fever, and the Boatswain and George White declares, That the Protest was false, and hardly a Word of Truth in it, but for fear of being put out of his Lodging, he then being very Sick and Lame, sign'd it.

[Pg 30]

As soon as the Mate recover'd, we all and every of us declare, and give our Oath, That this is the real Truth, and the said Master's Protest to be false; which we now before the Worshipful Justice of the Peace disavow and give our Oaths, That this is the Truth and that if the said Master had taken the Mate's Advice, the Ship, with God's Assistance, might have been in Boston Harbour several Days before she was lost.

Christopher Langman, Mate.

Nicholas Mellin, Boatswain.

George White, Sailor.

Christopher Langman, Nicholas Mellin, and George White, personally appeared before me the Subscriber, one of Her Majesty's Justices of the Peace at Portsmouth in the Province of New Hampshire in New England, and Member of Council within the same, this 9th Day of February, 1710-11. and made Oath to the Truth of what is above written, Captain Dean at the time of taking this Oath being present.

Samuel Penhallow.

[Pg 31]

Christopher Langman, late Mate of the late Ship called the Nottingham, of the Burden of about 120 Tons, whereof John Dean was Master, Nicholas Mellon Boatswain, and George White Sailor, all belonging to the said Ship, do severally make Oath as followeth, viz. And first, the said Christopher Langman for himself saith, The said Ship being designed on a Voyage from London to Killybags, and from thence to New England, she departed from the Nore, the 7th of August, 1710. in company with her Majesty's Ship Sheerness, which they left off of Whitby. That on the 21st of the same Month they saw Two Sail to the Leeward, which gave chace to the said Ship Nottingham for about the Space of Three Leagues; in which time, (notwithstanding this Deponent told the said Dean they were Enemies) he often would have bore down upon them; that the Day fallowing they saw the Privateers again, when the said John Dean (contrary to the Will of this Deponent) would have brought the said Ship Nottingham to an Anchor; which if done, she would in all probability have been taken. That they then left the said Privateers, and arrived[Pg 32] with their said Ship that Night at Killybags aforesaid, where they deliver'd what Goods were thereto consigned. That on the 25th Day of September, in the Year aforesaid, they departed with the said Ship Nottingham from the said Port for Boston in New England. In Prosecution of which Voyage, being on the Coast of New England, the said John Dean, without any Provocation, came to this Deponent and knock'd him down after a very barbarous and inhumane manner, and between Eight and Nine of the Clock at Night of the same Day, the said Ship Nottingham was run on Shore on the Coast of New England, (contrary to the Advice of this Deponent) where she, with the chiefest Part of her Cargo, was utterly lost. And lastly, This Deponent believeth, that the said John Dean, according to his Working of the said Ship in the said Voyage, design'd to lose her.

Christopher Langman.

And the said Nicholas Mellin for himself saith, That the several Allegations, Matters and Things contained in the aforegoing Deposition of Christopher Langman, are just and true in every Particular thereof.[Pg 33] And this Deponent saith, That at the Time they were chased by the said Privateers he was present, and did hear Mr. Charles Whitworth (then on board the said Ship, and adjudged Part Owner thereof) say, That he would rather the said Ship should be lost than obtain her design'd Port in Safety, having made 200 l. Insurance. And this Deponent saith, That the said John Dean at the same time declared, That his Brother Jasper Dean had made 300 l. Insurance; and immediately after said, If he thought he could secure the Insurance, he would run the Ship on Shore; and upon the same order'd this Deponent to hoist the Boat over the Side of the Ship, which done, the said John Dean put therein all his valuable Effects, with a Design to run the said Ship on Shore, but was prevented by the Deponent Christopher Langman, by whose Assistance the said Ship arrived at her Port of Killybags, and having reloaded departed for Boston in New England, upon which Coast making the Land, the Deponent being on the Watch, call'd up the said John Dean, and told him there was Land just to the Leeward of them, and the Deponent Christopher Langman being call'd up also, desired the said Ship might be put[Pg 34] off from the Shore, which the said John Dean refus'd if she went to the Bottom; and for the said Langman's Advice threatned to fetch up a Pistol and shoot him, and did go down, and came up behind him and knock'd him down with a Loggerhead, by means whereof he lay dead for several Minutes, and the same Night the said Ship Nottingham run ashore upon a desolate Rock, and was stav'd in Pieces; And this Deponent saith, That if the Ship had missed that Misfortune, she would have run ashore on the Main Land, which he believes was the Master's Design: And on the said Rock we should have been lost our selves, had not the Mate Langman, who was then bleeding and cutting down the Mast (under God) sav'd our Lives; in which Island the Cook was frozen to Death, and the Carpenter dying next having been reduced to Hunger, the Master skinned him and cut him up, and they eat him, when Two of the Ship's Company went on Shore on a Raft; one of which was never heard of, the other was found dead in the Woods, by which means the Country understanding a Wreck, came off with a Shallop, whereby they had a Fire after the 22d Day, with which they broiled the[Pg 35] rest of the Man, until the 24th Day after their being arrived on the Island before they were relieved.

Nicholas Mellen.

And the said George White for himself saith, That on the 7th of August 1710, they departed with the said Ship Nottingham from the Nore, on the Voyage to Killybags and New England, that in Prosecution of the Voyage on the 21st Day of August, in the Year aforesaid, there appear'd off the Coast of Ireland two Ships to the Leeward, to which the said John Dean would have bore down, but that the Deponent Langman and the Men believ'd they were Privateers, and advis'd to the contrary, and would not consent to his bearing down. And this Deponent saith, That Mr. Charles Whitworth, then on board the said Ship, and said to be a Part Owner thereof, declared, That he had rather be taken than not; and the next Day the said Master John Dean would have run the said Ship Nottingham on Shore, provided he thought the Insurance would be paid, and then declared his Brother had 300 l. assured, and Mr. Whitworth 200 l. assured, and, so put out some Goods into the Boat (which was[Pg 36] then in the Tackle) to save, altho the Deponent Langman and the Men declared the said Ship was within so small a way of her Port, and might escape, which she did accordingly. That after her departure from Killybags, when she came on the Banks of Newfoundland was chaced by the Pompey. Captain Den, at which the said John Dean and Mr. Whitworth seem'd to rejoice, believing him a Privateer; but proving otherwise, they appeared disappointed. That when they came on the Coast of New England, falling in with Cape Porpus, the Mate and the Men declared that it was not convenient to stand in for the Shore, but to bear away to the Southward. That upon some Words arising John Dean with a Perriwig Block struck the Mate Christopher Langman Three Blows on the Head, which made him lie bleeding. That the same Day the said Ship Nottingham was run ashore upon a most desolate Island, call'd Boon Island, (which had they miss'd they must have run ashore on the main Land in a few Hours, which makes this Deponent believe in his Conscience the said Ship was designed to be lost) where the Men had been lost had not the Mate, who was then bleeding, came on Deck, and the Mast being cut down, under God saved their Lives. In which Island one of their Company, being the Cook, died, and the Carpenter dying next, they being reduced to Hunger, eat him, when Two of the Ship's Company went on Shore with a small Rafter, one was never heard of, the other was found dead in the Woods, by which the Country understanding a Wreck, came off with a Canoe, whereby they had Fire after the 22d Day, by which they broil'd the rest of the Man until the 24th Day after their being on the Island before relieved.

George White.

Predict. Depon. Christopher Langman, Nicholas Mellen, and Geo. White, Jurat. fuerunt 1st Die Aug. Anno Dom. 1711. Coram me,



Transcriber's Note:

Punctuation and type-setting errors have been corrected without note.
Corrections in the spelling of names were made when those could be verified.
Otherwise the variations were left as they were.

Other errors have been corrected as noted below:
page 16, If <unclear> were ==> If we were
page 17, and the Dutchman upon upon it ==> and the Dutchman upon it
page 34, Ship Nottingham <unclear> ashore ==> Ship Nottingham run ashore