Sunday, June 23, 2024

The castaways who built a city out of their wrecked ship


As Chipp watched, Bulkeley, Byrne and the small team of recruits boarded a boat; The welfare of the entire group was now in his hands. as they lined up with pieces of stake, The waves slammed them. Once their boat was towed to the man-of-war, they slumped over the wreckage, crawling along caved-in decks and cracked beams, which continued to break even as the men sat on top of them. Were.

As the explorers entered the sunken ruins, they saw, below in the water, the bodies of their compatriots floating between the decks; One wrong move, and they’ll join them. Byrne wrote, “The difficulties we encountered on these voyages to the wreck cannot easily be described.”

He unearthed some barrels among the wreckage and transferred them to his boat. “Many casks of wine and brandy were found,” said Bulkeley excitedly. At one point, he reached the captain’s storeroom and opened the door: “brought out several casks of rum and wine, and brought them ashore.”

Cheap soon sent more parties to help with the excavation. “By the captain’s orders we were working on the wreck every day except when the weather would not permit us,” wrote Midshipman Campbell. All three boats were deployed. Cheap knew that the castaways needed to salvage as much as possible before the wreck was completely submerged.

They tried to bore deep into the hull, into the flooded chambers. Seepage water pooled around them as they penetrated layers of debris, like shipworms eating through the hull. Labor hours often have little value. Finally, the men broke open part of the hold, taking out 10 barrels of flour, a cask of peas, several casks of beef and pork, a container of oatmeal, and more casks of brandy and wine. They also obtained canvas, carpentry tools, and nails – which, Campbell said, “were of infinite service in our situation.” There was more: several boxes of wax candles, along with bales of cloth, stockings, shoes, and several watches.

Meanwhile, the hull had become further apart—”blown away” as Bulkeley put it. And as climbing the wreck became too dangerous, with only a few rotten planks sticking out of the sea, the men devised a new strategy: they hooked long wooden poles and, reaching over the gunwale, blindfolded Try fishing out extra supplies.

On the shore, Sasta had pitched a tent near his dwelling, in which all the provisions were kept. as they did on stake, he relied on a strict hierarchy of officers and petty officials to enforce his orders. But, amid the constant threat of mutiny, he relied primarily on an inner circle of associates—a structure within a structure—which included Hamilton, a marine lieutenant; Surgeon, Elliott; and Purser, Harvey.

Cheap also secured all the guns and ammunition in the store tent; No one was allowed to enter without his permission. The captain always carried a pistol, and he authorized Hamilton, Elliott, and Harvey to do the same. With their guns blazing, they met the transport boats as they came ashore, making sure everything was properly transferred to the tents and recorded in the pursuer’s accounts. There will be no theft—another thou shalt not be in the articles of war.

Cheap found that, at times, Bulkeley violated all rules and regulations. When the moon came out at night, Gunner sought to continue mining the wreck with his friends, but Cheap refused because of the risk of theft. Bulkeley wrote in his journal Cheap and complained to his inner circle, “They were so circumspect about the embezzlement of anything that they would not suffer the boats to work by night. … By this we kept provisions and other useful things.” Missed many opportunities to get things out, which we’ll soon need a lot.