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!! Ballina Chronicle; Jan 30, 1850 "Hottinger Wreck"

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  • Cathy Joynt Labath
    BALLINA CHRONICLE Ballina, Mayo, Ireland Wednesday, January 30, 1850 THE NEW YORK LINERS - Liverpool, Wednesday - We regret to state that the accounts received
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 22, 2005
      Ballina, Mayo, Ireland
      Wednesday, January 30, 1850

      THE NEW YORK LINERS - Liverpool, Wednesday - We regret to state that the
      accounts received this morning respecting the packet ship Hottinger, Captain
      Bursley, are far from satisfactory; on the contrary, they hold out no hope of
      the ship's escape, and what is still worse, it is feared that the captain and
      part of his crew have lost their lives in their zeal and anxiety to try and save
      the ship. A letter from the Receiver of Droits at Dublin (Mr. Walsh) to the
      consignee, Messrs. Fielden, Brothers, was received here this morning. It is to
      the following effect- that yesterday pieces of ship and cargo were drifted on
      shore near Dublin. Her masts were still standing, but Mr. Walsh thought she must
      go to pieces; four or five men were to be seen in the maintop. Every exertion
      had been made by Captain Bursley to save life; and he, with twelve of his crew,
      determined to remain as long as there was a chance of doing so. Mr. Walsh's
      informant feared that the captain and his crew on board had lost their lives, as
      he could not hope they would be able to survive the gale and severity of the
      previous night (Monday). The Guy Mannering is again in dock, and does not make
      much water.

      THE LOST AMERICAN PACKET SHIP - As Captain Bursley stood deservedly high in
      the estimation of all who knew him, and as he was one of the oldest captains
      frequenting our port, we have gleaned a few particulars of his life, which may
      not be uninteresting to our readers. The gallant captain was born at Cape Cod,
      Massachusetts, in the year 1798, and consequently was in his 53d year when he
      died. He seems to have imbibed a desire for a maritime life from his infancy,
      for before he was twelve years of age he entered the mercantile marine of the
      Port of Boston, and so quick was his progress in his chosen profession that
      before he attained his 21st year he commanded an East Indiaman, from Calcutta to
      Boston. It is now upwards of twenty-one years since he first entered the Mersey
      as Master of the Dover, a first class vessel of the original Boston line of
      packet-ships, since when he has been a frequent visitor to our port. At a
      subsequent period he became connected with the Black Bell or New York line, in
      which he commanded the Silas Richards and the Orpheus, and afterwards the
      Cambridge, belonging to the same line. It will be in the recollection of many of
      our readers that the Cambridge was severely tried, as were also the nautical
      skill and judgment of her commander, during the great gale of 1839. On that
      occasion, Captain Bursley could not obtain a tug boat to tow him out of the
      river, and when the storm arose in its violence and might, his ship slipped her
      anchors and was driven on towards the Prince's pier. Every exertion was made by
      both master and men to arrest the threatened destruction of the ship; trusses of
      hay were lashed over her sides to protect her, hawsers were made fast where
      available, and when every other inducement failed in procuring a steam-tug, the
      commander excalimed with his accustomed liberality, "one thousand pounds for a
      tug." But none would venture, so imminent was the peril. In this emergency the
      remaining anchors were tried and as they held, the noble ship was preserved,
      from becoming an immediate wreck. He has often experienced the hardships of a
      seaman's life. About 14 years ago (in company with Captain Marshall, now of the
      Republic) he was nearly wrecked in the Orpheus, on which occasion he had to put
      back to this port for extensive repairs. Fifteen years ago his brother, then
      captain of the Lyons, was lost off Port Butrick, where he was interred, and a
      monument erected to his memory by the subject of this sketch. They now sleep in
      death within 80 miles of each other. At the close of his career with the Black
      Bell line he took an active part in the organization of Fielden's line, to which
      he has since belonged, as master of the Hottinger , a fine vessel, about seven
      or eight years old. No better sailor left this port; and it is affirmed of him,
      that no man knew the Channel better than he did; and therefore the cause of the
      calamity referred to remains a mystery at present. We believe that he intended
      that this, if successful, should have been his last trip; and that he felt
      delighted at the prospect of enjoying in ease and happiness, amidst his friends
      and in the bosom of his family, that otium cum dignitate to which a long,
      laborious and well spent life eminently entitled him. The deceased was highly
      esteemed by all who had the pleasure of his acquaintance as a sincere friend, an
      honest man, and a good Christian. He has left a wife and children to mourn his
      loss. -- Liverpool Albion.

      Cathy Joynt Labath
      Ireland Old News
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