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WRECK OF THE ROYAL CHARTER. DISASTER OFF THE ANGLESEY COAST FIFTY YEARS. AGO. NARRATIVE OF THE WRECK. Continued. The two investigtations. connected with the loss of the Royal Charter, concluded by acquitting Captaiin Taylor of being any way accessory to, or responsible for, her loss. A base attempt had been made to urge, intemperance on his part as a cause, of the sad catastrophe., but, this was disproved to the: satisfaction of a just and impartial jury. The saloon passengers, who were exam- ined, and who had daily opportunities while on board the Royal Chai-teir, of ob- serving! his habits, were unanimous, in their teaifcmony to his uniform sobriety; and those of the crew who were examined and acquainted with nautical operations, were unanimous., aAso, in declaring that he had done all that. an experienced officer could, in the emergency, to save the ship. It has been asserted by those practised in channel navigation, that, had Captain Taylor kept his ship, more to sea, the re- sult wouild not, have been attended with such disaster. But when we reflect on the observations made by some, of the wit- nesses, we are inclined to believe that the, screw of the ship was strained, and occasioned her' weakness and final loss in the hour .of trial; as it has been admitted-, when iit, Ibew a hurricane,, she became un- m2.na¡geablef-ThescTe,w propeller1 was at work, but the. ship notwithstanding was drifting" rapidly to. leeward." One of the witnesses examined, stated they were a>l.l day in the, vicinity of Holyhead; he could not. account, for' ifc, but it struck him and several of the. passengers1 that the ship was making no way, and this testimony was partially substantiated! by one of the crelw examined, who acknowledged that they were four hours there. We copy the following extract from an article. which, the, recent rapid voyagei of the "Great Britain," from Liverpool to Australia, elicited from the "Times" Cor- respondent at Melbourne:—, "The, "Great Britain' made her passage out in fifty-five days and sixteen hours. I believe the 'Simla' made her first voyage out to. join the Red Siea, Line in fifty-five days and fifteen hours; but, there is a dispute between the respective owners and agents of these vessels about an hour or two. In the meant,ime, the unhappy fate of the Royal Charter and of her liv- ing freight has raised the objection by many that thei intense greed of the own- ers of rival 5,ineis to. accomplish 'the shortest pass-age on record' must greatly increase, the riiisfc of life. Of this there can be no doubt.* It is really awful to, put, the proposition broadly—that the wholesale sacrifice of life in the Royal Charter was paTlt, of the price the world pays for enormous speed." Though it be far from our intention to insinuate that Cap-tain Taylor was in- strumental in producing the destruction of life that resulted from the wreck of the Royal Charter, istS.ll it, must ever con- tinue a source of domestic regreti that he did not, when the gale increased to a hurricane, avail himself of his .contiguity to Holyhead, and put back to' that- port for shelter. From a calm retrospect of all the circumstances connected with this deplorable calamity, we must infer that Captain Taylor was not prepared to meet, in a, narrow sea., a tornado, peculiar to the great oceans of the equator; but finding himself betrayed into. the fatal cyclone, he exerted every means that his nautical proficiency enabled, him, to save hiis val ua,bel freight of life, .and protect his vessel from the fate that menaced it. Three time-si we hear of his having been prostrated on the. deck by the force of the prevailing waves, .and, yet, from amidst this scene, of darkness and danger, he pro- ceeded, to. the sailoon, calm and collected, to tranquilize. the. terrified passengers; but, he lived to see the 31" worst, fears realised, and his own hopes broken up like the ship he ,commanded, for he went down to his. watery grave with the frag- ments of her ruins in his hands, and the deatiih wail of the perishing passengers in hi Is ears; .and if the agony of those mo- ments could have been rendered more in- tense, it must have, arisen from memories of fair and favourite forms—household treasures, that might never more make gllad the heart or home of the lost mariner! Rear Admjiral Fitzroy explains the nature of the storm which wrecked the Royal Charter. Combining the various reports, he has ascertained it, to have been a complete horizontal cyclone, travelling1 bodily northward; the area, of its sweep was scarcely 300 miles in diameter, while the central portion was advancing northward, not uniformly, but at an average rate of about twenty miles an hour, the actual velocity of the wind, circling (as against watch hand) around a small "lull," was from fifty to a, hun- dred milie-s a hour. At p aces westward of its centre, the Wind appeared to "bark" or "retro gade," shafting from east through south-east, south, south-west, and, west to north-west. Our channel squadron, not far from the Eddystone, had a rapid-indeedi almost a sudden- shift from south-east to north-west, being in or near the central Jull; while at Guernsey, the wind veered round regular- ly. The sudden shift, off the. Eddystone occurred .aibout three, or soon after,' and about, half-past five it took place- near Reigate, from eastern parts of England; the central places on the east and north coasts of Scotland having strong easterly and northerly gales a day later than the middle of England. When the Royal Charter was wrecked, Elgin and Banff- shire were not disturbed by wind; when it blew hard from east to north on that- exposed coast the .storm had abated, or almost,cea,sed in the .channel and on the south coast of Ireland. We copy from the "Liverpool Albion" of March 26th, 1860, the following paragraph "It appears from the annual report, of Captain Robertson to the Board of Trade, that the ships and lives lost on the British coasts, during; last year, were greatly in excess of the numbers recorded as lost in 'any previous year. As com- pared with 1858, there were 1,416 casualties against 1,170, and 1,645 lives lost against 340.. This increase is chiefly attributable to the violent gales of October 31st and November 1st and 2nd. In the former gale there were 133 total wrecks and 90 casualties, resulting in serious damage, and 798 Rives, were lost; this number includes the loss of 480 lives in the Royal Charter. In the latter gale, there were 27 total wrecks and as many ,casualties, with a loss of 51 lives. It is computed that the, loss, of property caused by wrecks and casualties during' the year was, in cargoes, 2893,000, and in ships, £870,0.0.0, making, a total loss of nearly two millions." The following interesting letter is from Mr W'. Giimour, of Aylesbury—for two years surgeon superintendent of the Royal Charter:- "Having been surgeon of the un- fortunate vessel during four voyages from Liverpool to. Australia and back, I feel myself called upon to, glive a few remin- iscences of the ill-fated ship, and her late officers who are now no more. Almost every one, of the, late officers was most intimately known to. me, as we were more a 'band of brothers' than anything' else; but, poor fallows they are gone, and they deserved a, better fate. To begin with Captain Taylor-,a better commander and seaman never had charge of a ship. He was a strict, disciplinarian with his offi- cers and crew—almost too much so. He was very fond of .c-arryin-g all the sail he l could possibly have spread out; he took every advantage of the wind, but it was > thought, by some that, he. sometimes car- ried too much saiil, which strained the ship more or less; but of this, from my own knowledge of nautical affairs, I can- not give, an opinion; but I can safely say that, when at sea, I never, on any occa- sion, felt the least nervous or uneasy at the quantity of canvass, he had on her1—■ I mean as 'long! as we had plenty of sea-room. But I felt rather nervous the voyage before, last I think it was thait, I was in her coming up channel. We were steaming, and there were a great many vessels passing us, and one ran right across our bow—so close that I could have, almost stepped on board of her—but this, was no fault of Captain Taylor. What I used to say of him was, that he was a 'rough diamond'— as almost everyone is who has risen from the ranks of the forecastle. He never had been a gold-laced, kid-gloved middy, with more money than brains, but had got up to what, he was by his own per- severance, and proficiency. He has left, a widow, and, I thing he, told me, he. had nine children. "The chief officer was W. B. Stephens- a more gentlemanly, better educated, cool-tempered chief-officer there did not exist. He was one who had always a pleasant word for everybody, and who did everything in his power to make, all on board happy and comfortable. He was the life of all the deck during; his watch aloft, as very many of the passengers, who sailed in her will remember. He had been twice shipwrecked; before, and was in the steamship 'Cleopatra' as chief- offi,cer all the time she was employed in the transport service during; the Crimean war. Poor fellow! if he had been spared he would have been an ornament, to the mercantile marine service.; but it was willed otherwise. Many—very many hours have I spent in his company, and;, I can safely say, a, better young man I never knew. He was a good christian, a good seaman, a fond and tender hus- band, an honourable, and true son of the ocean. He has left a widow and two children, who, are residing in Bootle. He was a, native of Scotland. "The second officer, Andrew Cowie, was also a very promising' young man, a good seaman, well educated, and feailless of danger. He was once shipwrecked on thecoaslt, of South Australia. He came home wiith Captain Taylor in the old 'William Murney,' which showed that he wiais fearless of danger in trusting himself in such a, eiraft. He was also a Scotch- man, and married; his wife resides at 'Go,van, near Glasgow. "The third officer, Mr Bean, I did not- know much of. He was of a more re- served and quiet, disposition, but always pleasing; and .agreeable to thei passen- gers and he. always did his. duty on all occasions as a, true British seaman. I cannot. say if he wa,s married or not. "The fourth officer, John Croome, had J been a ;c,adet, or middy, on board ever
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mon sailors—.when any of them were ill; | well do I remember her attention and j kindness to one poor fellow, a sailor, who j one night fell, from the mainyard on to. j the deck, and had one of his arms taken off. She tried to take him the nicest part of her meails, and nursed him like a sis- ter till he was able to go about again. "And now for Joe Rogers, the Maltese, who swam ashore with the rope to which the hawser was attached that was the means of saving several lives,. He was a hero, indeed, to overcome the death- dealing waves. This feat will be ever remembered by every true British sea- man. But many a time have I seen him go out on a yard arm when it was blow- ing 'great guns,' when no other sailor would venture. He has often told me that he never knew what fear was, and I bless God that such a brave fellow has been spared to perform more deeds of daring. "I will now dlose with a. few words of Piping Judd; though but a sweeper be- tween decks, he often delighted the pas- sengers on board the Charter with his tin whistle. He was able to play some of the most, delightful pieces from cele- brated operas." The fearless bravery which Mr 'Gilmour was accustomed to see evidenced by Joe Rogers has now obtained for him a lasting notoriety. In November he was pre- sented by the commititee of the National Life-boat Institution with a valuable gold medal, £ 5, and a suitable vote of thanks engraved on vellum. The presentation was made at Liverpool, and Mr Graves, the chairman of the Local Marine Board, in addressing Rogers, dwelt eloquently on the heroicconduclt, of this distinguished seaman. Rogers, in a brief reply, said he should be glad to, perform the same duty again under similar circumstances. i George Suaiear. a, Maltese seaman, also, whom it may be remembered, was the first that made the attempt to swim ashore with a liine, but failed, has been present- ed with a silver medal, at the Liverpool .Sailors' Home, in presence of the board- ers of that establishment. Suaicar was boatswain's mate of the Royal Charter at the time of her unfortunate wreck, and rendered great assistance in saving the lives of those who escaped by means of the hawser.
-i 11 o, "Was your husband good to you during your long illness ?" inquired the kind lady who was making a, charity call. "Oh, yes, indeed, ma'am! replied the poor woman; "as good as could be—he was more like a, friend than a husband." was more like a, friend than a husband."
DANCING CLASSES IN WALES. PUBLIC PROTESTS AT F EST IN IOG. The action of the Festiniog Inter- mediate School Governors in granting the use of the (School for a dancing class has raised a storm of protest from dfferent. Free Churches and quarry eating-houses. The Festiniog Town Council a month ago passed a resolution of protest, and at Fri- day night's meeting a letter was received from the Governors stating that they had passed no resolution on the Council's letter. Mr Cadwaladr Roberts, vice chairman of the Council, who brought the matter up, proposed that, the Governors should be now asked to reconsider their de- cision. It was often said by those in. favour of dancing that it was difficult to find more respectable people than those who patronised a dancing class. The people of Ffestiniog; should look at this matter as their forefathers did. He was glad to find the Methodists taking up the matter and passing1 resolutions of protest. Other denominations had taken it up very, little. Mr E. M. Owen I second the proposi- tion. There is no question Mr Roberts is right on this matter. Nine voted for the resolution, which was declared carried. Five abstained, from voting. Mr Powell said he did not vote be- cause this was an excellent way of adver- tising! the class. The Clerk said 'there were three times more in the class since the discussion at the last Council meeting. Mr Powell said there would be more again now. He did not favour the class, but lie felt this matter was raised in order to kick the ministers and the deacons. Mr Roberts said there were two opin- ions on everything, He might say that he felt it an honour to differ from some people.—(Laughter.)
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r since she first started from Liverpool. Hie was appointed as fourfLh officer the voyage previous to the last. At the Z7, time of the, appointment he had not- served out his ime, but he was a very clever draughtsman, which talent he in- herited from his father, who is a mechanical draughtsman to the firm of Penn and Son, the ce,l,ebrated marine engine-boilermakers, of London. He was a mere youth in years, but. a man possessed of sterling nautical qualities. "The purser, Mr John Lewis, com- menced his sea. life on board the. steam- ship 'Great Western.' In her he made several trips- across the Atlantic. He afterwards- -entered on board the 'City of Pittsburgh' steamer, belonging- to an American company; she- was burnt, to the water's edge, and he lost his all, and suffered much privation, both bodily and mentally. He afterwards, entered on board the steamship 'Great Britain,' and in her was; promoted to the post of chief steward, which he filled without com- plaint all the time he was in her, more especially while she was in the transport service, when he came more, especially under my notice. 'On her being paid off by the, government, he was transferred to the Royal Charter as purser, which situation he has well and truly filled to the satisfaction of all—owners, passengers and crew. He was allowed to. he, the best purser that, ever sailed on the, sea; he weill knew how to make the most of every- thing on board. He was most gentle- manly -in his manner; he was very engaging and most, pleasant in his con- versation, and many—very many—pas- sengers will remember the pleasant hours spent .in his cabin, after the business of the day was over. He belonged to Bristol. and has left a widow and two children. "I üome now to a person whose talents and edurat.inn were of a different kind— poor John Rogers, the chief engineer. He wa,s the second engineer on the 'Great Britain' whiLel in the transport, service, and for some time previous, I believe. He had made altogether six trips to Australia, and this unfortunate one was the seventh. On the Rioyal Charter being ready for sea, he was promotedl chief in her, which situation he has filled ever since. He was a, good practical engineer, Z, and one who was complete master of every part, of his. trade. He was very fond of. his- violin, and, when not steaming, many a pleasant hour have I spent, in listening to the beautiful Scottish alirs he used to play; but his, little engines were, his chief deCight; he used to called them his chil- .diren, and often, in the midst of our amuse- ment, would he say—'Come and see, how my children look.' He was a Scotch- man, born in Edinburgh, but, for many years his family have been residing in Liverpool. He has left a widow and six children to mourn their loss. "The second engineer's name I cannot recollect, but his..christian name was 'Frank.' "The third engineer was named Hos- kins, son of the, Captain Hoskins, who was in command of the 'Great Britain' when she was wrecked in Dundrum Bay. He played very well on the cornopean, and, when the ship was lying in Port, Phillip Bay, used to enliven the tedium with the strains of his music. He was a very gentlemanly young man, and atten- tive to. its duty. "The; fourth, a bioilermaker, whose name was Wilson, I did not, know much of, only that, he was a Scotchman, and could 'spin a good yarn.' "The principal .storekeeper, Robert. Clu-cas, will long be remembered by the many passengers ,and others who were, 'acquainted with him. He always gave satisfaction to every person, and when the toils of thei day were over, the many invitations he had to the passengers' concerts and parties, told how he was be- loved. He could sing a, good song, and tell a good story. He belonged to the Isle of Man, and had a brother living in Liverpool. "The barkeeper was Edward Lewis, brother to the purser. He had been at, sea many years. I think he told me that he had been shipwrecked on the coast of South America,. His situation was a, diffi- cult one to fill, more especially on board a passenger vessel, and to give satisfac- tion to all was a most;, difficult, ta.sk; but, yet, he managed to. please every one, and to carry .out the regulations to the. best of his ability. He was also married, and had a son in Australia, and a wife and several children in BristojL "And now for one solitary middy on board, whose name was Frederick Foster, an orphan. He, was fonder of his bunk than the deck. He never would have made a good sailor, but now all his troubles are over. "The chief steward, Mr Emery, I did not know much of. He was of a reserved dispoisi'tiion, but always paid pairticular attention to his duties, as the excellent table that, used toO be spread in the Charter could testify. He belonged to Liverpool, and was married. "The chief steward of the second-class saloon was Mr Allen; he had been first, steward to. the, officers' mess-room. On being promoted) to the saloon the officers presented him with a purse, in remem- ,lbrance of his kindness and attention to' them. He was afterwards promoted to the situation of chief of the second-class, which situation he ably filled during several voyages. He was one of the smartest stewards thai ever were on board a ship, and the many presents he received fully testified as to how he did his duty. He has left a widow and family, who re- side on the Cheshire side of the Mersey. "The stewardess, was Miss Wareing" whose father has been in Mr B-nght's employ very many years. She was a very good modes, young woman. She had made two, trips in the ship, and was uni- versally 'liked, by all the lady passengers in the saloon; but her services and at- tention were very often given to the second-class a,s well; and often have I seen her in the very bows of the, ship visiting some poor third-class passenger who was sick;—indeed;, even to the com-