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A Middys Recollections 1853 1860

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This caused a gloom. After a bit, we tried to put a sail over the leak ; but this failed, and no time could be spared troubling over it.
THE 'RALEIGH' WRECKED 113 Officers were cheering the men, who were singing ; and it seemed to give them encouragement and assist them in their work. The ship now began to sink by the bows ; the ports were all barred in ; and every gun that could be so placed was run to the after part of the ship. Shot, shell, and every movable weight were brought aft, to count
...eract the weight of water in the bows.
On we sailed, hoping against hope ; but to no purpose. Her bows began visibly to droop, and, matters having assumed a serious aspect, the Com- modore attempted to get her to take the ground on the first small island that lay in our path. Minute guns were now fired, and the ensign at the peak was reversed, in the hope that some sail might possibly come to our assistance. A few old trading junks were about ; but they took no notice. We passed an easy stone's throw off the point of one small island, hoping she would take the ground ; but nine and ten fathoms of water was called in the chains close to the shore, and on we went.


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