This is the first installment of a three part story which will be our last look at the book as we will then move on to other places . . .
. . . so enjoy and be edified!
A Sailor’s Providential Story
Four years ago, I left the port of Boston, the master of a fine ship bound for China. I was worth ten thousand dollars, and was the husband of a young and beautiful bride, whom I had married six months before. When I left her, I promised to return to her in less than a twelvemonth. I took all of my money with me, save enough to support my wife in my absence, for the purpose of trading when in China. For a long time we were favoured with prosperous winds, but when in the China Sea a terrible storm came upon us, so that in a short time I saw the vessel must be lost, for we were drifting on the rocks of an unknown shore. I ordered the men to provide each for himself in the best possible manner, and forget the ship, as it was impossible to save her. We then struck, a sea threw me upon the rocks senseless, and the next would have carried me back into a watery grave, had not one of the sailors dragged me further up the rocks. There were only four of us alive, and when morning came we found ourselves on a small, uninhabited island, with nothing to eat but wild fruit. I will not distress you by an account off our sufferings there; suffice it to say that we remained sixty days before we could make ourselves known to any ship. We were dropped at Canton, and there I had to beg; for my money was at the bottom of the sea, and I had not taken the precaution to have it insured. It was nearly a year before I found a chance to come home, and then I, a captain, was obliged to ship as a common sailor. It was two years from the time I left America that I returned to Boston . . . . . .
To be continued on Saturday.