Lewis Evan Jones Jr (1825 — 1910) — Sagging landmark survives at Wynot

The following is a faithful transcription of a photocopied newspaper page, one of many documents I received from D. L. Bond, of Raleigh, N.C., as part of a collection of memoirs and papers, as well as genealogical information related to Lewis Evan Jones Jr. (1825 – 1910), his antecedents and descendants, and the “Nebraska line” of the Jones family, originally of Dolgelly (Dolgellau), Wales and Carnarvon, Wales. Mr. Bond is a great-great-grandson of Lewis Evan Jones Jr. I have no information what newspaper this article originally appeared in, or the date of publication. If anyone can help me identify this article’s origin and date, please contact me.

B. Paul Chicoine, the “Journal correspondent” who authored this piece, is apparently the same person of that name who co-authored the book Sioux City – A Pictorial History, the Donning Company, 1982. He appears to have also authored or co-authored a number of other historical articles and text books.


 

“Sagging landmark survives at Wynot

Bow Valley Mills

Historic mill – The historic three-story Bow Valley Mill still stands near Wynot, Neb., although sagging underpinnings cause it to teeter toward the spillway dug more than 100 years ago. The addition at the right is used to store farm machinery. (Photo by B. Paul Chicoine, Journal correspondent) (Photo shown above is not original to the article. It was taken by an unidentified photographer at a later period.)

By B. Paul Chicoine
Journal correspondent

WYNOT, Neb. – Time and grazing cattle may be kicking the underpinnings from a massive three-story frame structure near Bow Creek, but the Bow Valley Mill is a persistent survivor.

Perched on the bank of a dried up millpond, Cedar County’s oldest surviving landmark hangs on to the future with slipping fingers – a sad state of affairs for a building which has survived time, technology, floods and efforts by one of Cedar County’s more colorful and industrious families to keep the ancient giant in production.

Situated a quarter mile south of bubbling Bow Creek, a major water course in the north Cedar County area, the Bow Valley Mill is a monument to this family and to the raw, untamed wilderness of the Nebraska frontier. It was founded by Lewis Evan Jones and is part of an industry bloodline which included the Christian Advocate.

In 1857, while Jones, founder of the Advocate, was still plying his trade and papers, he was intrigued by a company of town promoters involved in establishing a prairie city along the Missouri River in Nebraska Territory.

Family accounts and local records show Jones, a native of Carnarvon, Wales, was impressed by the immense acreages of hardwoods which lined the hills in this region and the available water power along its creeks.

Turning publication of his newspaper over to a colleague in St. Louis, he embarked upon a milling career which was to develop the huge mill at Bow Valley.

Mrs. John (Edith) Jones, grand daughter of the mill’s founder, maintains a careful collection of its records. She says the family business survived 100 years of prosperity and disaster by adapting to changing times and needs of Cedar County.

Those needs included making flour for the gold prospectors of Montana and later, generating electricity.

The mill is said to have helped supply the soldiers in the last campaigns against the Indians.

“There must have been thousands of tons of wheat through those old stone burrs,” says Mrs. Jones, a spry and effervescent woman in her 70’s. “A good share of it went to the government for outposts and reservations too.”

Riverboats upbound from Sioux City to Montana stopped regularly to take on fuel and freshly milled flour at the mill’s private landing, located a short distance north on the Missouri River.

Along with processing locally grown wheat and corn, a sawmill attached to the mill’s east side supplied planks, timbers, and framing for homes and farms in Wynot, St. James, nearby St. Helena and Yankton.

With the coming of the railroad and the founding of Wynot, the track’s terminus in 1907, the mill’s creeking side-shot water wheel was harnessed to an electric generator to power the town’s first electric lights.

Built of local hardwoods – maple, oak, and walnut – and mortised and tenoned throughout, Bow Valley Mills shows the work of skilled hands. Its records show the persistence of the Jones family in keeping it alive through three generations.

Wheat, hauled in by pack horse and wagon, was ground on the first floor by water-powered burrs, then sacked and stored in a “mouse-proof” flour house alongside.

Mouse-proofing was accomplished by overlaying walls with tin. The materials were shipped upriver by steamboat.

Water-powered elevators raised wheat to the two top floors for temporary storage.

A quarter-mile millrace delivered water from a rock and log dam across Bow Creek to the south. Later, after floods destroyed the first dam, Thomas Jones, son of the founder, constructed another dam of railroad iron and concrete further west. Mr. Jones recounts that the sheer weight of the second dam caused it to sink beneath the river bank, thus closing the mill for good.

Milling thus ended at the at the ancient landmark in the 1920’s. Subsequent attempts to revitalize the structure failed, ending in the mill’s conversion to Commodity Credit Corp. grain storage in 1939.

Today the giant wood structure stands in silence a dusty gravel road. The sawmill and mouse-proof flourhouse are gone. So is the great creaking waterwheel, and the shafts of machinery it turned. Spilled aots and assorted rubble litter the mill’s huge interior. Below and away a herd of black cattle graze quietly amid willows where head deep mill waters used to rush.

Like most of the Wynot community, Cedar County has voiced no plans to restore the venerable structure which now sags precariously toward the spillway its founders dug.

A local landmark, a Nebraska industrial relic, or just a memory, the Bow Valley Mill stands waiting for another stream of genius to harness its silent wheels.”


Bow Valley Mills — Wynot Nebraska — Edith D. Jones — A Brief Visit to the Past

The following is a faithful transcription of a photocopied page (partial article) that originally appeared in the Cedar County News, on January 29, year unknown (late 20th century, perhaps early 21st century). It is one of many documents I received from D. L. Bond, of Raleigh, N.C., as part of a collection of memoirs and papers, as well as genealogical information related to Lewis Evan Jones Jr. (1825 – 1910), his antecedents and descendants, and the “Nebraska line” of the Jones family, originally of Dolgelly (Dolgellau), Wales and Carnarvon, Wales. Mr. Bond is a great-great-grandson of Lewis Evan Jones Jr. The author of this article, Edith D. Jones, is the granddaughter of Lewis Evan Jones Jr. If anyone has any information on Edith D. Jones, please contact me so we can share information and I can document the connection.


 

“Circle Tour – A Brief Visit to the Past

Lewis Evan Jones, Jr.

Lewis E. Jones of St. Louis, Mo., came to the St. Helena area in 1858 and helped establish the town. He brought with him a printing press and a saw mill. He operated the sawmill at that place until 1868 when because of availability of water power from Bow Creek, he built the Bow Valley Mill, approximately      1 ½ miles north of Wynot, Nebraska.

Approximately one and one half miles north of Wynot is the Bow Valley Mills built in 1868 Lewis E. Jones as a flour mill. Oak timber from the Henson Wiseman timber was used in its construction – the frame was mortised and pinned with wood pins, no nails used at any time.

A dam was constructed across Bow Creek, approximately one fourth mile south of the Mill. A mill race was dug and water power was made available for running the mill.

On the west of the structure there was an addition called the “flour house”. On the east side was the saw mill equipment, and a scale house was attached on the south. These additions have been removed through the years. The main structure, which contained the flour milling machinery, is standing today – probably the oldest historical mark left in Cedar County today.

For many years flour milling and sawing of lumber were the main activities. The mill ground flour for half a century to feed the pioneers of Nebraska and Dakota Territory. Thousands of tons of flour and feed were ground by Bow Valley Mills and transmitted to the town. Still later this building was converted into government storage bins for scaled corn. Today it is used for storage of grain and farm machinery.

Bow Valley Mills

Bow Valley Mills, late 20th century.

 

Bad Village

A hill, approximately one-half mile northeast of the Bow Valley Mill, was the location of a major excavation by the University of Nebraska in the 1930’s. It revealed an early Indian village. It was unique among Indian Villages because it had a wall built around it. This led some to believe the Indians were hostile, and therefore some traditions say the village was called “Bad Village”. Lewis and Clark speak of this village as they journeyed up the Missouri River in 1804.

School District #1

Private schools were established by the early settlers in many areas. The first public school – before school districts were formed – was built by farmers in 1867 and the first session of school was held in the summer of 1868. At that time, school was held between the time crops were in (approximately May 1) and held until November when corn picking started.

The first school building was a log school with a dirt roof. It was located south and east of Bow Valley Mill and was called the St. James School. It was taught by Anna Schmidt, who later became Mrs. John Felber.*

She was the first teacher in this section of the state and one of the first north of the Platte River.

She had 35 pupils, some as old as she, and some walked as much as four miles. She taught this school two years.

In 1872, a school house was erected northwest of Bow Valley Mill – (approximately one-half mile) and the first teacher was Mr. J.J. Tullass.
On April 30, 1873, School Districts 1, 2, and 3 were organized. This area being in Disctrict #1.

In 1930, a marker was erected by the Home Culture Club of Wynot, assisted by the school children of Cedar County. Since the site on which the log structure (of 1868) stood was in an area which was flooded nearly every spring and fall, the marker was set on the grounds of the first school erected in 1872.

School District #1 was discontinued several years ago – the building was sold and moved from the area.

The marker, a large boulder weighing about 3300 pounds was found near Wynot and moved to the school grounds. This was set in a cement foundation. On the top is a miniature log school house fashioned out of cement and hand carved to resemble real logs. On the face is a bronze plate with the following inscription:

1868 – 1930
Erected to commemorate the first school in Cedar County
Mrs. Anna Schmidt Felber, first teacher.
Sponsored by the Home Culture Club of Wynot, Nebraska,
Assisted by the school children of Cedar County.

Fort Jackson

During the summer of 1864, “The Great Stampeded” took place. It followed the Wiseman Massacre near St. James and the murder of Dr. Lorenzo Bentz northwest of St. Helena. News of an uprising was brought by refuges that the Sioux and Cheyenne had organized an army of 10,000 to clean out all the white inhabitants from both sides of the Missouri river. Hasty consultations took place and settlers fortified themselves as best they could. The settlers at Old St. James immediately fortified themselves in the “Court House” by throwing up sand embankments and otherwise strengthening their position expecting momentarily to be attacked. They also dug a well inside the embankment.

At St. Helena, the mill house (one mile east of the town) was filled with fleeing settlers from up the river and particularly with many Norwegian families from “The Dakota Bottomlands” (across the river). All were welcome as they helped strengthen and fortify the place. Four families, all that remained in the town, congregated to occupy one four room house, the Felber House, one room for each family. They gathered all the arms and ammunition to be found.

The massacre was never carried out but there was good reason to believe that it had been carefully planned.

In the course of a few days, nothing having occurred, the scared settlers began to return home and everything soon quieted down.

Later, during the year 1864, Company B, 7th Iowa Cavalry was sent to protect the settlers against Indian attacks. A part of this Company was stationed at Niobrara and the remainder garrisoned at Fort Jackson to protect settlers of St. James and St. Helena.

Approximately two miles northwest of Bow Valley Mill is a fork in the road. Fort Jackson, named for its captain, once topped the high hill in the “Y” – on what was later known as the Harder farm.

The soldiers remained about a year and it is said the settlers were not sorry to see them go.

Dakota Bottomlands

As we catch our first glimpse of the spire of the St. Helena Catholic Church, it would be remiss if we did not pause at the top of the hill to view the Dakota Bottomlands.

This land, lying along Missouri River and bounded by the James and Vermillion Rivers, is known as “Strike the Ree” land – (land of the Dakotas).

In the fall, when the summer’s hunting ended, the Dakota usually set up their winter camp along the Missouri, near the James. It is here, that on August 28, 1804, Lewis and Clark made their camp.

Struck by the Ree

Struck by the Ree

There is no historical documentation but it is told that an Indian child, son of a head chief, was born that night. When Captain Clark learned of this he asked that the child be brought to him. He wrapped the baby in a U.S. Flag and declared him to be the first “Yancton” Indian citizen of the U.S. He prophesied that the child would become a great of his people. Strike-the-Ree led a life well in keeping with this prophecy. He became a chief of the Yankton Sioux tribe in his…

(continued on Page 15)”**


* John Felber is probably the son of Henry Felber, who traveled to St. Helena in 1858, with Lewis Evan Jones Jr., on board the steamboat Florence, to first settle in Cedar County.

** I do not have the balance of this article included in the papers passed to me from D. Bond. I have contacted the Cedar County News to determine if copies still exist. I will update this article to include the missing material if my inquiry is successful.


Lewis Evan Jones Jr (1825 — 1910) — History of Newspapers of Cedar County Nebraska

The following document is a faithful transcription from a photocopy of a letterpress set pamphlet style publication with colored paper wraps, measuring approximately 8 1/8” x 4 3/8”. The text pages count 20, un-paginated, but complete (all included).. There is no date of publication, but the text is dated Nov. 18, 1901 at the end of the story. The cover bears the following information; handwritten at the top of the wrap in ink (“No. 4.)”, title is indicated as “History of NEWSPAPERS of Cedar County Nebraska”. The author signs “L. E. JONES, SR.”* at the end of the text. There is no printers imprint indicated, and while the typesetting is somewhat different than the other pamphlets in the series, it is likely that the publisher was the Herald Printing House, Hartington, Nebraska, who produced the other documents in the collection.

* Note that Lewis E. Jones Sr. is actually indicated as Lewis Evan Jones Jr. for the sake of this archive, as his father’s name was also Lewis Evan Jones. Once in America, this author had a son, also named Lewis Evan Jones, who for the sake of this archive is denominated as Lewis Evan Jones III.


SteamboatNEWSPAPERS IN Cedar County, Neb.

EDITOR NEWS: Several inquiries have been made to me in regard to early newspapers published in this county. I am not conversant with papers published within the last ten or fifteen years in the southern part of the county, therefore can write only of those printed in the northern part, the first settled.

When living in St. Louis, Mo., I had a small printing office, and when I sold out there on account of ill health I kept enough material to print a small newspaper. After looking over the country for a healthier place to locate, I visited Nebraska in the spring of 1857, taking passage on the steamer TWILIGHT, engaged by the American Fur Company to go as far up as Fort Union, at the mouth of the Yellowstone river, the farthest point navigable at the time. We reached what is now St. Helena, in twelve days after leaving St. Louis. Here we found about a dozen men holding down claims, living in one or two shanties. The land had not been surveyed by the government at that time. I left the Twilight at that point. These men did all in their power to have us locate here. After few days viewing the country, I saw there were large possibilities in the fine water powers which could be utilized in the Bow Creeks and the magnificent forests lining the banks of the Missouri river. The drawbacks to locating here were the Indians, who still hovered in the vicinity, and the lack of settlers to cope with the savages, should they make up their minds to become hostile. Dakota, on the opposite side of the Missouri river was still the home of the Yankton Sioux Indians. Nebraska was bought by the government from the Omaha Indians, who were placed on a reservation at the Black Bird Hills, about a hundred miles below on the Missouri river. The only danger to fear was from the Yankton Sioux Indians across the river. In a few days I commenced my journey back to St. Louis, leaving St. Helena with an ox-team, reaching Sioux City (which at that time had about four hundred inhabitants) in two days. The Northwestern Stage Co. ran a four-horse stage coach from here to Council Bluffs, making the trip in two days. From there the same company ran another stage coach to St. Joseph, Mo., also making the trip in two days. Here I found a large trading steamboat plying between there and St. Louis, stopping to load and unload freight and passengers at every landing. It took her eight days to reach her destination. I was very glad to be home once more. One of my children having died during my absence.*

I had fully made up my mind to leave St. Louis for a more healthy location, and found Nebraska offered good inducement to ambitious young men with but little capital at their command, recollecting the advice of Horace Greeley, editor of the New York Tribune, gave to a young man making inquiries to him what best to do in order to make a start in life, the old editor wrote him this reply – “go west young man and grow up with the country.” This advice I accepted as if directed to myself. After reasoning with my wife and friends, pro and con, we came to the conclusion to make the sacrifice of a comfortable home in the heart of a refined city, for the distant prairies of the far west. After this a steam saw-mill, the first requisite of a new country, was the first thing to look for, then a practical and competent sawyer and engineer was found in the person of Jacob Branch, who worked in a machine shop in the city, who with his family were anxious to go to a new country. The steamboat OMAHA was then loading for upper river; the captain promising they were destined for Ft. Randal, and would take my freight to St. Helena. Mr. Branch left his position in the machine shop to go with his family. In the mean time a young printer named Augustus Nette, who had worked at my office in St. Louis, also wished to grow up with the country, offered to purchase a press if I would furnish the material I had already on hand, to print a paper. It seemed a wild vision to print a paper in an Indian country such as this was at that time. However, the office went on board, together with sufficient amount of provisions for a saw-mill hands and wood-choppers during the winter. I left my family in St. Louis, while Nette and I, and Branch and his family went up the Missouri river on the steamer OMAHA, loaded down to the guards with freight and passengers, destined to various points on the river. When we arrived at Sioux City, the captain informed us he was not going further. Here our stuff was dumped along the leves. After finding an empty house in the neighborhood for Branch and his family, Nette staying with them to care for the printing material, I walked six miles to Dakota City, where a ferry-boat that had been plying between Dakota City and Sergeant Bluffs was lying idle, to try and hire her to take us up the river, 150 miles by water. The owners of the boat would not consent to hire her for that purpose, so that enterprise failed. I next hired a dilapidated old buggy with an ancient horse, at Dakota City, and wended my way to St. Helena, which place I found second night after leaving the boat at Sioux City. I found everyone in bed here. I had hoped I could find a sufficient number of teams here to haul our stuff up. To my utter disappointment I could find but two ox teams there. Early next morning we started back with these two teams for Sioux City, which took two days to reach. Finding teams at Sioux City and vicinity but no one would let them go unless they went with them. In this way I had 17 teams (oxen, of course) and 17 teamsters) loaded up and crossed on the steam ferry to Nebraska. Here I found that oxen were the right thing to have, for if I had horses they would get out of sight of the mud. The weather had been very wet for some time previous and no road made through the thick timber at Covington worthy to be called such. We had terrible times all the way to St. John, a Catholic settlement a mile or two north of Jackson. We brought axes and shovels with us to make roads and build bridges as we went. In six days, after hard work, we reached St. Helena, not without breaking down wagons several times. The boiler (a large two flue, twenty feet long) was the most troublesome, for we ruined two truck wagons in its transportation. The first thing after a day of rest was to cut down oak trees and hew them for foundations for the mill and build shanties for the men, Nette and myself having found one end of a log cabin to use as a printing office.

After four weeks labor, we had the mill and printing office ready to work. After having sawed a few thousand feet of lumber and printing one issue of the St. Helena Gazette, of Nebraska production, (some six or seven numbers having been printed in St. Louis) I turned my face again towards home, dirty and ragged. Following the old road as before until reaching St. Joseph, Mo., where the Hannibal & St. Joseph railroad was building from both ends, the eastern end from Hannibal, Mo., on the Mississippi river, I took this route this time and was sorry for it, for there was a gap of about one hundred miles to be traveled in open lumber wagons for this distance, with rain pouring down in torrents the whole time. Arriving at Hannibal we found a steamer for St. Louis.

To tell the truth, after reaching home once more and finding everything cozy and comfortable, I wished the name Nebraska had never been mentioned to me, but now since I had my foot in it would be cowardly to back out.

The following spring (1858) found me and my family, Henry Felber, and Peter Jenal, with their families, on board the fine steamboat FLORENCE, loaded for Ft. Randall, by Frost, Todd & Co., who were settlers at that point, and also held several posts, trading with the Indians in Dakota. We had a pleasant trip up the river and landed at St. Helena in ten days. Finding the men left there anxiously awaiting our arrival, for their larder was getting very low and their clothing ragged.

My friend Nette had suspended publication of the GAZETTE, because, he said, the country was yet too green. After a short time helping us to build houses to live in, and build fences, etc., the best he knew how, he sold his interest in the office to me and left for St. Louis. It was money thrown away to think of reviving the publication of the paper. I stored the material away and took the white paper and ink, enough to civilize the whole North American Indians, to Sioux City, where friend Zeibach, now of Yankton, was there publishing a small weekly paper. I think it was called REGISTER, but do not exactly know the present SIOUX CITY REGISTER was built on its foundation or not. However, friend Zeibach wanted the ink and paper, but did not have the spondulix to pay for the same at that time, so I left it with L.D. Parmer, who kept a store there, to be sold as fast as the REGISTER could use it. You understand that printing supplies had to be got from St. Louis and freight was high. This was before the advent of railroads.

In 1891** the treaty with the Yankton Sioux Indians having been ratified, Dakota was opened for settlement. The territory filled up slowly and politicians began to loom up. Vermillion and Yankton became rivals for government power but Yankton got the lead and became the territorial capital.

A Mr. Clark, hailing from Sergeant Bluffs, Iowa, anxious for some important office, so as to grow up with the country, as it were, came over to see me in regard to purchasing my printing outfit for the purpose of starting a newspaper at Sergeant’s Bluffs. After considerable dickering, I traded him my material for a span of $500 mules. Instead of going to Iowa, as he promised, he took the plant over to Vermillion and started the Vermillion Republican, to oppose the friends I was backing at Yankton, but the trade was made, and I was not going to cry over spilled milk. I think the old press (a Washington) is at that place still, but the type must have been renewed. Such is the history and fate of the first attempt at publishing a newspaper in Northern Nebraska, then fresh from the hands of the Indians.

St. James, Neb., Nov. 11, 1901.

EDITOR NEWS: In my last letter to you I promised to give you the history of newspapers published in this county, from its formation to the present time. In that letter I deviated from my original purpose in order to get at the birth and demise of the first urchin, its burial and last resting place together with the trouble its founders had to give it nourishment in an uncongenial soil. Peace to its ashes as the forerunner of greater masculines.

Cedar County for some years after this had to depend for the world’s news through the medium of a horse-back mail once a month. Grasshoppers and civil war affected greatly to retard its growth, but not much greater than the surrounding communities similarly situated, continued to grow slowly, and in June, 1874, a young man from near Cedar Rapids, Iowa, made the venture of giving us our second paper, which he christened “Cedar County Advocate”. The county at this time could not give sufficient patronage for such ably conducted and neat workmanship as was given on this paper, printed at St. Helena, the county seat. If it had not been for the liberal advertising patronage from Yankton and Vermillion business houses, for these two towns were booming up all the surrounding country from the start, the paper could not have lived a day. These young newspaper men had not come here for their health, and soon got tired of working and spent their time in order to build up other enterprises, with what ability they possessed. W.L. Chandler, editor and proprietor having had better inducements from the people of Vermillion, discontinued the publication of the ADVOCATE and moved with his office to that enterprising little city. Thus Cedar County became the bereft of making herself known, for the second time, to the outside world. This catastrophe happening sometime in the fall of 1876.

On the 4th day of April, 1877, a young man of the name J.W. Sheppard, also from some part of Iowa, commenced publishing a paper at St. Helena, called CEDAR COUNTY BULLETIN. This as well as the ADVOCATE was well printed and edited, but the patronage was too small to justify Mr. Sheppard to continue publishing the paper there.

In order to keep a printing office in the county, I was induced to purchase the office from him on the 19th day of September, 1877. The paper was not suspended this time, but went on as usual. The paper not paying expenses and my time otherwise occupied, as soon as opportunity was offered, I sold the material and subscription list to Mr. P.C. Nissen, then county clerk, and he also disposed of the whole outfit to S.J. Johnson (a printer who had worked on the ADVOCATE and BULLETIN) and Nelson Teauto, who published it until Nov. 16th, 1879.

This company had on the 1st day of Jan., 1879, changed the name from the CEDAR COUNTY BULLETIN to CEDAR COUNTY NONPAREIL, at the solicitation of E.P. Drake, then living at St. Helena, who had formerly lived at Council Bluffs, Ia., and got his political education from that staid old Republican sheet.

John H. Felber, the next man who took hold of the wheel,, who was doing business at St. Helena, saw as well as others did that its doom was at hand, and purchased the whole outfit, in order that we could advertise out business at home and shape the country’s course from going into the wrong hands. In the course of time Mr. Felber and associated with him one Norman Rapalie, who had always been in the newspaper business at Chicago and elsewhere. About this time it hoisted the Populist flag to its mast-head. All the papers printed heretofore had preferred to be neutral in politics, but I must confess they leaned towards the men who owned them. I must say their columns were always open to all who wished to be heard on any subject.

People at that time were square and upright, not shams as many are at present. Times have changed, and I’m sorry to say not for the best. The dollar has become the political faith of many. You can count on your fingers’ ends many among us who have thrown away their old coats, in order to get a better one gold lined.

Mr. Felber soon after assuming control of the NONPAREIL, removed his business to Hartington, where he still lives, taking the paper with him, together with its printers, from St. Helena.

The NONPAREIL, after many vicissitudes, was sold to Mr. Bordwell, who knew nothing about the business, changed the name to LEADER, and later leased it to Z.M. Baird., sheriff elect of Cedar county. He for some unknown cause, in January 1898, put on his tiger hat and hied away to Chicago. In a couple of weeks he started up in Hartington with a brand new outfit and commenced publishing a new paper called the CEDAR COUNTY NEWS. He having become so popular with his paper saw at a glance the people would give him any office within their gift, sold his newspaper to another sound democrat, A.V. Parker, who is now editor and proprietor of the NEWS. Baird selected the office of Sheriff and the people of Cedar county, at the last election put him through with a rush, 490 majority. How do you do, Mr. Sheriff?

The old office, which was brought to the county to print the Bulletin, an independent paper, then printed the Nonpareil, a populist paper, and later the Leader, also a populist paper, was finally gobbled up by the omnivorous party which now publishes the Hartington Herald. The old outfit was taken to Iowa.

The democratic politicians being without an organ, H.B. Suing and others started a paper called the DEMOCRAT, at Hartington, the first number appearing in September, 1880, and continued to be published until April 1890, at which time it was sold to John H. Felber and consolidated with the NONPAREIL. This was a neat paper and ably edited while A. M. Gooding controlled its editorials. After he cut loose, for some reason unknown only to those interested, Mr. Grimes, a school teacher, undertook the task, but knowing little about writing political editorials, the paper went, as all such papers ought to go – – to oblivion.

The HARTINGTON HERALD was established
Oct. 4, 1883, by Huse, Powers & Co.,;
April 26, 1884, was published by Geo. Herb;
Jan. 9, 1885, by Z.M. Beard;
July 17, 1885, by Beard and Watson;
June 10, 1889, T.B.A. Watson;
June 10, 1889, by Herald Pub. Co;
March 4, 1892, W.F. Sinclair;
April 1, 1892, S.J. Young;
April 1, 1897, P.A. VanDorn;
Feb. 11, 1898, Geo. L. Nelson, the present editor and proprietor, became the chief owner of the very much bought and sold, bright little sheet.

There were other papers published in the country, but for the reason, as I stated to you, I was conversant only with those in the northern part. Coleridge, Laurel, Randolph, and maybe other places, have their full quote of these public necessities.

The Advocate, Bulletin and Nonpareil were all four-page papers, printed on good paper and handsome in appearance. Their sizes were 24×36 inches.

Yours very truly,
L.E. Jones, Senior
St. James, Nebr., Nov. 18, 1901.


* Louisa Cambria Jones, born August 8, 1854, died August 7, 1857. This is the child that died while Lewis was traveling, therefore it can be surmised that his first trip into the Nebraska territory took place between the middle/end of July and middle of August, 1857.

** The treaty with the Yankton Sioux Indians was actually ratified by congress and signed by President Buchanan in February, 1859. “1891” is an obvious typographical error.


Lewis Evan Jones Jr (1825 – 1910) — Story of the Sea

The following document is a faithful transcription from a photocopy of a letterpress set pamphlet style publication with light-colored paper wraps, measuring approximately 8 1/8” x 4 3/8”. Text pages number 31 pages. There is no date of publication, but the text is dated Dec. 20, 1899 at the end of the story. The cover bears the following information; handwritten at the top of the wrap in ink (“No. 3.)”, title is indicated as “STORY OF THE SEA”, author is listed as “By LEWIS E. JONES, SR.”*, and imprint is “Herald Printing House, Hartington”. The original appeared in the 1899 Christmas edition of the Cedar County News.

* Note that Lewis E. Jones Sr. is actually indicated as Lewis Evan Jones Jr. for the sake of this archive, as his father’s name was also Lewis Evan Jones. Once in America, this author had a son, also named Lewis Evan Jones, who for the sake of this archive is denominated as Lewis Evan Jones III.


 

Story of the Sea
By L.E. Jones, Sr.

Full-rigged ship before a gentle gale,
Sight for the gods to see:
Her sails well filled with nature’s breath,
Proud monarch of the sea.

Your last Christmas edition contained a story, not of fiction, but of facts, written by me, with the promise of continuation at some future time. With your permission, I continue that story.

I left your readers then at Charleston, South Carolina, but did not tell them what business brought me there. You will recollect I left there on the English brig Alpha, of London; that after reaching Liverpool I went with the same vessel to the gulf of Finland, that on our passage from there to Limerick, Ireland, we were ship-wrecked on the north coast of Scotland. After that catastrophe I worked my way to Liverpool and then home to Wales. From there I drifted over to France. There’s where my last story ends and this commences.

In the spring of 1845, as I was strolling leisurely along the docks at Havre-de-Grace, in France, looking at sail and steamships, going out and coming in the harbor, I spied one steamer I had seen before coming in. She had a large number of passengers on deck, all dressed in tight moleskin clothes. I could not imagine what they were. I soon learned they were English railroad builders, coming over to work on French railroads. After they had all landed I went on board and saw Capt. Geo. Evans, an old friend of my father, who owned and commanded this steamer, called the St. David. She made regular semi-monthly trips between Liverpool and Havre. I found that all the crew also hailed from my native town. I had never sailed with any of my acquaintances before, but Capt. Evans being short of a full compliment of hands, that the English board of Admiralty require, prevailed on me to make a trip or two with him for a change. I must acknowledge that I was very sorry I consented, for after unloading the vessel, her advertised to leave Havre for Liverpool had arrived, steam up and the wind blowing a gale, with tremendous waves against the piers in the harbor. No other steamer, not even first-class mail boats had made any preparations for leaving in the face of such storm. But Capt. Geo. Evans, owner of the vessel, was no seaman, and would take no advice from captains who had vessels far superior to ours.

Dare-devil fashion we steamed out of the harbor, in presence of several thousand Frenchmen. We had been taking in freight, until the last moment, which consisted mostly of French brandy in barrels. These barrels were hurriedly rolled on board by landsmen, so hurriedly that we had no time to properly fasten them. They were intended for deck load; the hold being full of finer goods. As soon as we cleared the harbor these barrels commenced dancing around the most fantastically, as the vessel plunged and rolled, as great waves dashed over us. Some of the barrels floated about, and we, poor devils, capturing one after the other, like police charging a mob, and secure them fast with ropes, for we had no calaboose like police. The wind, blowing from the north, square in our teeth, seemed to increase rather than diminish. We steamed with all the power of the engines. When dark came on, we had not made more than ten miles from the mouth of the harbor. About the middle of this dark and dismal night, I went to the cabin to see the captain, for he was a kind and considerate man, lacking only in seamanship. He was certain the old St. David would survive the storm, and, took me by the hand, saying as he did so, “There is a decanter of the best French brandy on the side-board, and should you become numb and cold, come down and help yourself.” I thanked him and asked if it would not be better to send it up to the men on deck, who suffered more than myself. He said “no.” Pointing to an ax that was close by, said “Take that ax and the tin can on the table and tell them to knock the head in of one of those barrels on deck, for I am not sure but Davy Jones will claim them before morning.” This name, Davy Jones, is what sailors give to the sea. Taking him at his word, I crawled over the brandy barrels to where the men were, and shouted at the top of my voice: “Here comes Samaritan.” Picking out a barrel in the dryest spot I could, gave Jack Thomas the ax and told him at the very same time, for he was a trust-worthy man, to give each one double allowance of this “Balm of Gilead,” and to be careful that none got too much, for we had hard work before us, when day appeared. To their credit, no one was the worst in the morning, after imbibing three or four times. When daylight made its appearance, we had made not more than about twenty miles from the French coast, the storm exhausting itself, when we could see the mail packets, having waited the storm to pass, steaming lively across the channel. We made as straight a course as we could for Falmouth, England, where we always replenished our coal bunkers. But lo! And behold, our coal was giving out rapidly, and we were about twenty or thirty miles from the English coast. The flood tide was coming in and we could hardly make headway against it with-out more steam. The only thing we could do was send a boat to Falmouth, where we could find a lighter that would bring us enough coal to bring us there. I was one of those who went in the boat, and finding a steam launch, hired her to take sufficient coal to St. David, lying off about fifteen miles, to enable her to steam in, having burned everything that would make steam, including most of the cabin furniture. With this coal we got to Falmouth. After coaling there, we went on to Liverpool, rejoicing.

After reaching there, two custom house officers came aboard and finding one barrel of brandy but half full, thought the crew had been committing larceny and were going to have us all arrested. I happened to be acquainted with one of these officers, explained the circumstances that caused the barrel to be but half full, that the captain had ordered it. After seeing the captain and he corroborating what I had stated, they sent for a liquor-gager to measure how much had been taken out. This settled, you understand there was a duty of one-hundred per cent on French brandy; other liquor fifty percent. The twenty gallons our men had consumed and splashed during the rolling of the vessel, was allowed to go free of duty. The other thirty gallons, that our boys did not care to drink, was charged 100 per cent – the captain paying the French price for the 20 gallons minus.

I had intended after every voyage to go home and finish my apprenticeship as printer, but more I saw of Capt. Evans more I liked him. Seafaring being pleasant and exciting life and myself young, my resolutions of going home were from time to time postponed.

I made some six or eight trips to France with the St. David. Nothing out of the ordinary happening, until one day on the dock in Liverpool, having arrived from France that morning, and everything in confusion, a neat, well-dressed elderly gentleman, wearing a white necktie, alighted from a carriage, asked me if the captain was on board. I answered in the affirmative by pointing him out. They were speaking together when I had occasion to pass them. I heard him ask if there was a person of the name John Brown among his crew. Capt. Evans answered there was not, and did not think a person had ever been on that vessel. Hearing that name mentioned, and knowing that I went under that name for years, but now had assumed my own name again, I stepped up and said that I had gone by that name some time ago. He then asked me if I was ever at Charleston, South Carolina. I said I had been. He then asked if I ever worked at a Karr & Bullocks cotton press. I answered in the affirmative. He then asked the captain if he would allow me to go to Mr. Dowling’s office, that he would bring me back in short time. The captain promptly asked him who this Mr. Dowling was. On learning that he was the chief police magistrate of Liverpool, the captain was alarmed and asked the gentleman if he had any papers to arrest me. On learning he had not, the captain asked by what authority Mr. Dowling wanted me to appear before him. He answered that the mayor of Liverpool had received an important letter from the mayor of Charleston; that it had been sent to Mr. Dowling for investigation, and assured the captain I would not be detained long, and that he would bring me back in his carriage. Upon hearing this I consented to go with the gentleman. Arriving at the office of Mr. Dowling, after stating who I was, he read the letter from Charleston, by which I learned a murder had been committed two days after I had sailed away from there. After finishing reading the letter, Mr. Dowling said that I was not implicated at all but wanted at Charleston as a witness, if I would go voluntarily. Finding by the letter that I was some 200 miles from the scene, I stated that I would go there if my salary and expenses were guaranteed. He stated that I was a British subject, and it was their duty to see that I should be properly treated. He spoke to me as a father and said it was my duty to save a human from the gibbet, if in my power to do so. I answered, “Enough said, I will go.” He then asked me to call on him at 10 o’clock next morning, and find what arrangement could be made for my voyage. The old gentleman took me back in his carriage to the St. David, as he promised he would. The captain, kind hearted man, would not consent for me to take this hurried step without further investigation; he would go with me next morning to Mr. Dowling’s office. We found there and old cotton merchant, who had offices both in Liverpool and Charleston, who was sent for to make arrangements for my passage and my comfort in Liverpool. He stated the ship, James N. Cooper of Bath, Maine, would sail for Charleston in about a week. He was instructed to make every arrangement as cabin passenger. Thus I left Liverpool and arrived in Charleston in about six weeks, having had pleasant weather during the whole trip.

During the passage I was a diligent student, having bought suitable books at Liverpool, as my education had been badly neglected, for the previous few years. Besides myself, there were three other passengers – a miller going to Savannah, Ga., to take charge of a mill there, and a young merchant of Charleston, who had been over to marry the girl he had left behind him. She was a delightful companion and happy to be my school teacher. From this young merchant I learned the terrible tragedy that caused me to be sent for by the state of South Carolina. The murder had taken place a year previous. A rich old Jew of the name Lyons, who kept a large jewelry store, had his throat cut from ear to ear, which was not discovered until late the next morning, and a large amount of money and jewelry carried away by the murderers.

This happened on the 12th of June, 1844. Many arrests were made, and Charleston was ablaze with excitement, but no clue could be had of the guilty parties. The city offered a reward of $1000 and a like amount by the friends of Lyons, for the apprehension of the guilty parties, but to no avail. One year after, a simple young man, who had been working about the cotton press where I had been engaged, swore out an affidavit that he and I saw the murder committed, at least said that we saw a young jeweler of the name Geo. W. Flash, with two Mexican officers, climbing the awning posts and gaining entrance to Lyons’ bedroom through the window, about 12 o’clock at night, and that articles from Lyons’ store were found at Flash’s store afterwards. This affidavit before the mayor was complete and voluminous. The only hitch made was that I was not with him that terrible night. Flash was committed to answer the crime. The only salvation his friends had was to find me. The mayor took the task upon himself, as you have seen how I was found in Liverpool. This I learned from my passenger friend.

On a Sunday evening our vessel dropped anchor in Charleston harbor. The young passenger and his bride went ashore in a yawl. We did not get to the wharf until next morning. The morning papers announced that the James N. Cooper had arrived from Liverpool and that the important witness in the case of Lyons was o board. When we came to the wharf it seemed to me that all the people in Charleston were there. The sheriff, Moses Levi, stepped on board and asked me if I was that witness. I answered that I was; then he asked me to come with him to the office of the district attorney. Arriving there, the officials expected us and had my bond ready. They asked me who were my bondsmen that I would appear in court, when it met. I was astounded and told them it was very unfair to make me give bonds, when I had come from England voluntarily. But this was the law of South Carolina; they could not violate it. Two gentlemen I had never seen before stepped forward and signed the bond. I had more invitations and visiting cards placed in my hand that day than I could fill in twelve months. The reason of all this was that the prisoner, Flash, was a German, and nearly one-third of the white population of the same nationality. It was no wonder they showed this friendship to me – a poor young man who had braved the tempest of the stormy ocean, to save their countryman, who was an entire stranger. I had a gala time during my short stay at Charleston, and was sorry my stay was so brief.

The second day, Tuesday, the court met, when the case was opened. I appeared at the sheriff’s office on time, but was informed by a deputy to stay there until my name was called as a witness. I was not allowed to know the other witnesses’ testimony. When adjournment for dinner arrived, the sheriff kindly took me with him to a hotel, where we both got excellent dinner. In the afternoon nearly all my acquaintances whom I had known there before, visited me at the sheriff’s office. The day passed by and many witnesses were examined but the time came to adjourn and my name was not called. The sheriff said my bondsmen were not there to renew my bond and the officers said jokingly that I would have to go to jail for the night. He stated this was the law and could not be obviated. He said he would give me a room as comfortable as any hotel. Nothing daunted, I went arm in arm with him through the streets, for the jail was about a mile from the court house. Arriving there, we had a good supper, and, as it was getting late, I was shown my room. It was a large room in the second story, containing about twelve or fifteen prisoners, committed there for debt. They had every comfort a rich man could wish – fruit, liquors, cigars, daily papers and latest magazines, in fact everything a man could wish, but liberty outside the walls. This was the most pleasant night I ever passed. They played cards, dominoes and whist until about midnight, when they all took to the downy cots and all slept comfortably, at least I did. In the morning the sheriff called on me and we both took a good breakfast at a restaurant, on our way to the court house.

Arriving at the sheriff’s office, there were a number of witnesses waiting to be called, as well as myself. About ten o’clock a gentleman with a young man entered the room. The gentleman was a turpentine manufacturer in North Carolina, who had gone bond for the chief witness in the case of Lyons. This bondsman had gone surety for the sole purpose of getting him to work making turpentine, in place of going to jail, which otherwise he would. His bond required him to produce this witness in court today. When they entered, I jumped up, extending my hand to this young man, saying “How are you Levi Messer.” He stood trembling like an aspen leaf. He had not heard that I had arrived, thinking I had left such a long time they would not be able to trace me up. He had sworn that himself and me had worked two months together at the cotton press. He had heard that I had gone to England on a certain ship, but he knew I did not go then. He stated that I owed him money, and that he went to look for me, in order to get this money, the very night Lyons was killed. He stated that I owed him three dollars and the least money I had was a ten dollar bill, that we both walked quite a distance before we could change this bill and pay him. East Bay in Charleston then (over fifty years ago) was a very prominent thoroughfare, the present street facing two wharves. One side contained a row of business houses. Here is where Lyons’ jewelry store stood. The office of the Charleston Evening News stood but a block distant on one side, and the French Coffee House, one of the most aristocratic saloons in the city, but few doors from Lyons. Both these places being lighted up all night so part of the street was almost as light as day. This witness swore that myself and him stood by a big pile of cotton on Magwood’s wharf straight across the street, when we saw three men. Flash, he said, he recognized as one, the other two as Mexican officer’s, as there happened to be a Mexican war ship in the harbor at the time, climbing up the awning posts in front of Lyons’ store, going in through the window of the room in which Lyons slept; that we heard scuffling in the room, and thought we heard some one choking, and that I proposed to run over and capture them. He swore that the young man he saw in the sheriff’s office was not the Lewis that was with him that night and worked in the cotton press, but some other young man of that name. Everyone in the court room knew he was a perjured liar. The proprietors of the cotton press, book-keeper, time-keeper, draymen, who hauled cotton to and from the press, half a dozen others who had worked with us, the man I boarded with and several others swore I was the one he swore was with him that night, for no other Lewis ever worked at that press, and all knew me when they saw me.

When I was called to the witness box, I stated my name, but when I left Charleston on the 10th day of June, 1844, more than a year since, I shipped on the brig, Alpha of London, by the name John Brown – that I worked at the cotton press over two months, and that Levi Messer worked about loading and unloading drays that brought cotton to the press. I never went by other name than Lewis while I worked at the cotton press. The state’s attorney asked me if I would know Levi Messer, if I saw him. “Yes,” said I, pointing my finger at him, “there he stands. I would know him among thousands.” Few more questions were asked me and answered. All the witnesses had testified that I was the one Lewis who worked for the cotton press, and the one referred to by Messer at the Mayor’s office.

I was not in the witness box more than from five to ten minutes before they were through with me, and I was at liberty to go where I pleased. The only thing I wondered as was that the state attorney or none of the lawyers questioned me about the reason I had for changing my names, as every one of the witnesses and all knew me only by the name of Lewis, and my leaving Charleston under a fictitious name of John Brown. If they had, I could have given them satisfactory reason.

Several witnesses were examined after me and night coming on, the court adjourned until next morning.

Next day arguments of lawyers consumed and continued most of the day, and Judge Evans, a very able man, announced that he would review the case and instruct the jury the next morning.

Friday morning arrived (the fourth day of this remarkable case). The court room corridors and streets were full of excited spectators. The judge at great length reviewed the case minutely and stated to the jury among other things that the presence of Lewis in person, broke down the eloquence of the state attorney, and instructed the jury to bring in a verdict of not guilty. The jury did not leave the jury box before they handed down a verdict of “Not Guilty.” The excitement in the court room and in the street baffles my powers to describe it. I managed to get out to the street through the great jam of excited people, when I was picked up and carried on the shoulders of several men a long distance down the street and landed in the parlor of the Charleston hotel, the most aristocratic hostelry in the city, where a lunch was spread for about fifty. Flash was also carried in like manner. I was bewildered by the popping of champagne bottles. I escaped as soon as I could. I was told that they kept it up nearly all night.

The next morning (Saturday) when I got up, the first thing I heard was that the police had to protect poor, unfortunate Levi Messer to get out of town, as the excited mob was determined to lynch him. The police took him quite a distance out of town, and his life was not safe, if he remained. Fool-like he came back and bought a bottle of whiskey in one of the many small saloons that are found in the suburbs of all large towns, and was found on the roadside as dead as a toenail. After breakfast I went out and avoided seeing those who had invited me to call on them. The first thing, I went to the sheriff to find how they were to dispose of me, as my mission was at an end. He stated that Mr. Brown, the mayor, was on point of death, and that he would see some of Flash’s friends and raise for me a purse to go home with. I turned around on him and said passionately: “You shall do no such thing. The people of South Carolina, or at least the people of the ancient city of Charleston, the descendents of those who held that fort (pointing to Fort Moultrie) against overwhelming odds, that inspired the ‘Star Spangled Banner,’ did not invite me here to become a beggar.”* The sheriff, and those with him in his office at the time, stared at one another, I inquired where the mayor lived and found the house. Mrs. Brown after I told her who I was, stated that her husband was very low, and did not think it safe to disturb him, however she took me to his bedside. He was the picture of death and could talk with great pain. With the assistance of his wife, he wrote a few lines with pencil, instructing me to take it to a friends of his, Capt. Cavendish, an old sea captain, keeping a ship-chandler store in East Bay street. Mrs. Brown stated her husband often spoke to her of me, and hoped I would be found, for he believed Flash was innocent. Mrs. Brown gave me a glass of wine in the sick-apartment when her poor husband fell back in a swoon.

Finding Capt. Cavendish a jolly old tar, the letter instructed him to make every provision to send me home. He stated it gave him great satisfaction of my coming and that he would deal liberally with me. I asked the old captain how he intended to send me home. He stated the ship Tyrone of Thomaston, Maine, was going to leave for Liverpool in a day or two and I could go with her. I asked him if he was going to deal liberally with me, as instructed by the mayor. He said, “Why not?” I stated that I had been idle then about fifty days, and if he would allow me forty days to go home, making ninety days in all and allow me fifty dollars, that the Tyrone would charge for my passage, I would find my way home in my own way and relieve them of the responsibility. The captain took me by the hand and said, “Bravo, boy,” I then turned round to him and said as the mayor had instructed him to deal liberally with me, he must have faith in him to do what was right. I would do the same, “Give me what you think my services have been worth to the people of this city and state, and I will be perfectly satisfied.” He went to his desk and drew me a check on the Bank of South Carolina for a sum that dazzled my eyes. After shaking hands with Capt. Cavendish and some others who were present, he said to his friends, who had been eye-witness to the whole negotiation: “Jack would sooner be before the mast than behind, sailor fashion.”

From there I went to a shipping office to inquire if the Tyrone had shipped all her crew. The answer was, they needed one able-bodied seaman. I asked to see the shipping list. It was from Charleston to Liverpool and from there to New Orleans. I signed it at once. She was to leave at eight o’clock that evening. I hustled around and saw all that I could in so short a time of the people that had befriended me. How disappointed they were that I did not stay a few days at least. They thought I was not satisfied with the welcome I had received at their hands. I told them I would have liked to stay with them at least for a month, if it had not been for one thing – I had left a mother prostrated with grief, for fear that I had come to some serious trouble in America, and that I would give all I had if I could send word to her that I was on my way home. We did not have telegraphs and but poor mail service at that time, and I could reach Liverpool as quickly as a letter could reach there. Many of these kind Germans that I have not seen since, saw me safe on board, with many tokens in remembrance of my visit to Charleston. Just before we left Capt. Cavendish came on board and informed me that the flag at half-mast, just hoisted on the court house, was in token respect of their kind and revered mayor, stating he had come down to inform me, by request of Mrs. Brown, that the last word he uttered was “Lewis.” Was it possible that my sudden appearance gave him such joy that his weakened frame could not withstand. I know that he had done much to discover the genuine Lewis, and that by his energy he was found. My mission at Charleston was at an end, and the good ship Tyrone arrived in Liverpool in thirty days. My joy knew no bounds when I arrived there, to tell the events and incidents of the short time I had been away, but imagine the first news I received when arriving there, was that the steamer St. David had been lost with all on board. There was joy and grief done-tailed together. It seemed that nothing but surprises followed me wherever I went. If it had not been for indefatigable exertions of the Liverpool police in tracing up the John Brown that left Charleston a year before, the next week after the discovery he too would have been among the list of those who went to their watery graves by the loss of the St. David, and poor Flash would most likely would have been sacrificed by rascally money mongers, for a reward of two thousand dollars. But providence would not have it that way. He would save me in order to save another.

God moves in a mysterious way,
His wonders to perform;
He plants his footsteps on the sea
And rides upon the storm.

The St. David left Liverpool on her regular trip to Havre, France, about the same time I left for Charleston. But not a word was heard of her after that time, or anyone on board. She could not founder in a storm, because for the first day or two after leaving Liverpool, she would not be very far from course, and the weather was fine and pleasant for a week after. The supposition was that he boilers had exploded, for they were not very safe, and that the vessel, with all on board, went to the bottom. When I learned this, I went on board the Tyrone and told this awful tale to Capt. Gardener, and asked for a furlough in order to go home for a few days, which he willingly granted. All on the St. David, mostly married men with families, were natives of that little town, all well-known to me – old shipmates. Imagine the surprise among the inhabitants of this little town, where I was born and brought up, known to every man and woman there, the only person alive from that jolly crew, and myself reported by some rascally miscreant to have been hung in America. Here, as in Liverpool, joy and grief intermingled. After visiting friends and the families of my old shipmates who were under the waters of the St. George or English channels, I had to return to my ship, after promising my parents that this was the last voyage I would make. My voyage, according to the articles signed, ended at New Orleans, and when I got there I was honorably discharged, I could come home on some English ship, and my voyage would expire as soon as we arrived at some port in England. You understand that when a vessel ship crew it is for the round voyage, to come back to your own country. When sailors leave their ships at foreign ports, they are deserters, but what does Jack care if he becomes dissatisfied, about the little wages due him. Of course he leaves this for the benefit of the ship-owners.

When Tyrone arrived at New Orleans my voyage was at an end. I was paid off, together with the remainder of the crew. I was not long there before I felt indisposed and needing rest. I went to the custom house and got a permit to go to the Marine hospital. I was not very sick, but needed rest more than anything else. This was a private hospital, for seamen only. Few doctors had built this with their own means, having contract with the government to furnish medicine, board, keep perfect vigilance and one or more doctors constantly in attendance. I prepared to be in this hospital, where everything was quiet, neat and clean, with a fine reading room. I was perfectly happy here. There were three wards, so that those not very sick, need not be in a sick room. The ward which I was in contained about twenty patients, some of whom were intelligent men. We would sit in the reading room for hours, narrating our experiences in different parts of the world. Some playing billiards, others dominoes, cards, etc. One evening in the month of April, 1846, all had retired to our clean, comfortable cots, most all had gone to sleep, when the greatest noise I had ever heard in this street (Circus street) broke out in our ears. We all jumped up and looked out through the windows, to see a large crowd of people shouting, dancing, and singing patriotic airs, with two men at the head of the lively crowd rattling away with fife and drum, calling for volunteers to go to the aid of Gen. Taylor, who was surrounded by Mexican soldiers at Point Isabel, mouth of the Rio Grande.

This news had reached New Orleans by relay riders, changing horses at every opportunity. There was no telegraph nor railroads in the whole country at that time. New Orleans had sent two thousand men by steamer down the Mississippi river and Mexican gulf before they had received the news at Washington. This was a lively night at New Orleans. Before noon next day two thousand men had enrolled their names as volunteers to relieve Gen. Taylor and his garrison; among those were the names of every one of my mess-mates in the third ward of Circus Street hospital, including myself. In front of the St. Charles hotel next day we were formed into companies and marched to the camp, formed two or three miles below the city. Next day was consumed in forming companies and selecting officers. Arms were brought down from the arsenal and steamers chartered. Drilling commenced as soon as arms were received and an army sprang up as large as Gen. Jackson’s near the place where he won his famous battle. Here on the third day I was taken down with yellow fever, the doctor stating I was not fit for this arduous campaign, and recommending me to return to my old quarters at Circus street hospital, with three or for others who were returned in like manner in the same ambulance.

He who fights and runs away
Will live to fight another day.

The volunteers left and reached Point Isabel in about two weeks from the time news had reached New Orleans. The siege was raised, the Mexicans retreating. In few days after this war against Mexico was declared, and on the 24th day of April, 1846, the first engagement took place. Most all your readers the disaster to Mexico after their capital city was taken, and they crushed to earth, poor in pocket, but rich in land. To pay the expense of that war they had to give us California, New Mexico, Arizona, and Utah.

To come back to my story, I stopped at the Circus street hospital, gained my usual health, the weather becoming very warm, I commenced thinking about going home, as I had promised. I took a stroll around the printing offices to find that all the newspaper offices were short of regular number of printers, and wages fabulous. The cause of all this – all the printers had gone to the Mexican war. Wages had always been higher here than any other place. My mind was now made up for good. I would go the first opportunity to finish my apprenticeship and return to this place. Next day I found a shipping office was shipping men for an English ship going to Liverpool. This was my chance, and signed articles to go on the large and splendid ship, the Magnificent, from New Orleans to Liverpool, where my voyage would be finished, and there paid off.

I may here mention the reason this English ship was here in a foreign port without hands. It has always been the habit of sailors to leave their ship, if they find wages higher in some other place. They can always find in large seaport towns plenty of boarding house keepers and runners to spirit them to leave their ships and stop at their houses until their money has gone. All men shipping from these houses are in debt, and the boarding house keeper collects their month’s advance, which is always a rule, and poor Jack made drunk, if possible, and taken with a bundle clothing, in a cab, with a bottle of rum in his pocket, often not knowing the name of the ship nor what part of the world he is going to. New Orleans was noted for this kind of work. The ship captains never troubled themselves to get them back, especially if wages were coming to them over the month advance. This was the case with all the crew shipped for the Magnificent. They would keep me from going with this vessel, because I came right from the hospital, and I did not enter any of their houses.

We left with a tug boat in the evening, going down the Mississippi all night, ready to cross the bar next day. It puzzled me to know how a vessel drawing 18 feet of water could cross a bar where there was but 16 feet of water. One tug boat took us down, but when we got to the Belize, the pilot station at the mouth of the river, two more tugs came out to us. Here one placed ahead of the ship, and one on each side, they tugged away, making tremendous puffs, actually lifting the vessel and dragging her through mud bottom. It took more than an hour to cross the bar. This was hot summer weather with light southerly winds. In the course of a week or ten days we were in the midst of terrible mountains of ice on the banks of Newfoundland, here in a gale of wind, running under bare poles, the wind so strong we could carry no sails, heavy fog and vessel rolling hard, as cotton those days was not pressed as it is now, and in danger of running on an ice berg, made one wish he were in some quiet hospital in the sunny south, or at home among friends. We made the run to Liverpool in about seven weeks and there were honorably discharged.

In the course of forty-eight hours after landing I was setting type for John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress, from the cases that had been always been reserved for me in my father’s office.

Farewell, dear Neptune – your beard is gray,
Perhaps we shall meet again some other day;
The sails are furled – my decks are clear,
The craft is staunch – I’ll tie up here.

Neptune replied in his old, gruff way,
Good-bye, my lad, we’ll meet on Christmas Day;
Your ship has freedom over my wide domain,
So, dear boy, we are bound to meet again.

Yours typographically,
L.E. Jones.
St. James, Neb., Dec. 20, 1899.

[The foregoing story was written by Mr. Lewis E. Jones, Sr. for the Christmas edition of the Cedar County News. We published one in the Christmas edition last year, when he promised to follow it up. It is written in his own peculiar style and vouched for every word to be true. – Ed.]

 

* While I suspect there is a great deal of exaggeration and hyperbole included in this story, I cannot let it pass without mentioning that Lewis got his facts patently wrong regarding the origin of the “Star Spangled Banner”. “The Star-Spangled Banner” is the national anthem of the United States. The lyrics come from “Defence of Fort M’Henry”, a poem written in 1814 by the 35-year-old lawyer and amateur poet Francis Scott Key after witnessing the bombardment of Fort McHenry by British ships of the Royal Navy in the Chesapeake Bay during the Battle of Fort McHenry in the War of 1812. Ft. McHenry is in the state of Maryland, nowhere near Charleston, S.C.


Lewis Evan Jones Jr. — A Christmas Shipwreck, 1844

The following article is a transcription from a photocopied document of unknown origin. My copy was obtained from D. L. Bond, great-grandson of the article’s subject, Lewis Evan Jones Jr. of Cedar County, Nebraska. I believe this item was originally published, in whole or in part, in the Hartington News, prior to 1901, as it is referenced in another story authored by Lewis Evan Jones Jr., that was written in 1901.
C.H. Jones
Raleigh, N.C.


 

Shipwrecked“Lewis Evan Jones Jr. – A Christmas Legend

In the year 1840, then about fourteen years old, I left my father’s printing office to see a little of the world. The first voyage took me from Liverpool to the headwaters of the Baltic Sea – Cronstadt, the seaport of St. Petersburg in northern Russia. Subsequent voyages were made to the Mediterranean and Black Seas, call at all the important ports.

The spring of 1844 found me working in a cotton press at Charleston, SC, the first, I believe, in the world to compress cotton, which reduced the bales to almost one-half the size of those coming from the plantations. I had visited all the principal seaports on the Atlantic and Gulf coast previous to this time, and had many adventures. However, the month of June, 1844, being unusually warm, I became acquainted with the captain of an English brig returning home from Galveston, Texas, and called at Charleston in search of freight for England. Here he found a cargo of cotton for Liverpool, and the weather becoming warmer daily, he induced me to go with him for a nice summer voyage, which turned out very pleasant and agreeable. From Liverpool I went to Wales to visit my parents, calculating to return to the US with some American vessel.

Returning to Liverpool I found the English brig Alpha, of London, with which I had left Charleston, loading a cargo of salt for the Russian navy at Revel, on the headwaters of the Gulf of Finland. The old Captain, whom I found on the passage from Charleston very agreeable, prevailed on me to go with him on this voyage expecting to be back in time to go to Charleston or New Orleans for the winter season, where the times were good and the wages high.

In this way I left Liverpool in the early fall, having come from South Carolina, where the thermometer stood at 100 in the shade, scantily clad, sailing for the Baltic Sea thus late in the year, but hoping to make a quick trip before the Baltic closed for navigation. We passed up the Baltic Sea and entered the Gulf of Finland in good season, unloaded our cargo of salt, which, by the way, was a valuable article in that part of the world, the reason that custom house officers searched every pocket on our persons every time we went ashore.

From Revel we sailed down the Baltic Sea, and called at several seaports in search of a back cargo, as ours was a tramp ship. Finally calling at Memel, Prussia, we found a Catholic church, already framed, waiting transportation to Limerick, Ireland. Thus we were in luck, for this was a large church building which gave us all we wanted to carry. Having all the men to load that could conveniently work, we left Memel in good spirits, hoping in good time to reach our destination, and again sail for Charleston or another southern city. Passing out of the Baltic and Cattegat Seas, we had made very fair progress approaching the Highland of Scotland, our men singing the familiar songs, “Annie Laurie” and “Bonnie Lassie”. When all was going on in the happy mood, and we had sighted Cape Wrath lighthouse, the most northern part of Scotland, a terrible gale came on from the south that continued to blow like fury for four long weeks, so much so that we could carry no sails, but close reefed main top sails, to keep us as much as possible to the wind, to save our deck being swept by tremendous waves in which we were engulfed.

Here we were, drifting helpless in the North Sea, in the month of December, going due north, and the days shortening rapidly, until we had but four hours daylight, not a stitch of clothes nor bedding dry, provisions giving out rapidly, until all hands from the Captain to the cook volunteered to go on short allowance of hard tack, which was about all we had left. Our water casks were nearly all empty, but by spreading sails on the deck we managed to save some hailstones which were continually pelting us. It was too cold to snow. If your could have seen me at that time it would have reminded you of Joseph, whom his brethren sold into Egyptian bondage, about every stitch of clothing I had of all shades and colors, were stitched together in one garment, which was about all I could carry. In the same way I had stitched together my four blankets, all wet through, which kept the biting winds from my body. Thus we drifted day after day in the bowels of the North Sea, with no intermission in the fury of the elements.

One morning, if I may call it such, the man on the lookout shouted “Land, land!” The Captain, who had become discouraged of ever seeing land again, said to me, who stood close to his side, “It is Greenland, sure; I did not think we had drifted this far North.” As we neared this rugged promontory we could see plainly that it was not a main land, but some rugged island in the midst of the waste of waters. Consulting our charts, we came to the conclusion that they must be the Faroe Islands belonging to Denmark, and four hundred miles north of Cape Wrath, Scotland. Our hearts leaped with joy, as these islands were known to be settled sparsely by a hardy race of people, said to produce oats, potatoes, etc, besides being daring fishermen. The wind also seemed to slacken in its fury. All our ambition then was to communicate with the people on shore in order to replenish our larder and fill our water barrels. As the wind slackened up we made sail to find some landing place. We could not come within four of five miles of the isles, as currents were whirling, and turned our vessel around several times. At one place the land sloped down to the water’s edge and looked like a small harbor. It was impossible to approach near. We hoisted flag of distress to entice these people to have compassion on our plight. It must have been the late storm that made it impossible for them to get their boats out from shore. Now it looked hard for us poor mortals to come in sight of the promised land, like the patriarch of old, and denied the pleasure of treading its soil.

While in this dilemma the wind changed for the first time in four weeks to the north, blowing about a half gale. Our old Captain gave the order to square the yards and set all the sail we dare carry, and sail back for the land we were blown from (Cape Wrath) four weeks previous. As the old Captain remarked “Boys, make our crackers last three days and I promise you, if this wind continues, to be in some safe harbor by that time.” We all did our duty, as this was a race between life and death. At the expiration of three days, at ten o’clock in the forenoon, we furled sail and tied our vessel up at a small sea port, the most northern harbor in the highlands of Scotland, called Stormness, and indeed it is rightly called, for this is a stormy coast and no mistake.

This was the 24th day of December, 1844, and our Captain, as they generally advised by ship owners when making long voyages, was very anxious to get to Limerick and deliver the church we had on board at as early a date as possible, concluded to get in provisions and water as fast as they could be got on board. Stormness is a small outfitting port for vessels calling, like ours, in distress. All was ready early in the afternoon, and we cast off with the well wishes of the sturdy of the small harbor. The wind had been blowing a gale so lately that the sea was not yet calmed. Our course after we left Stormness, was through and an archipelago of islands, some very small and not inhabited, called the Hebrides. Among this group is and important island called the Isle of Skye. Twenty miles northwest of this are a group of small islands called the Lewis islands. Through the channel between the Isle of Skye and the Lewis islands we had to beat up against head winds, the sea being very rough. About six o’clock in the evening, by moonlight, we got to near the Lewis group of islands, our craft becoming unmanageable and drifting very rapidly before the winds and waves toward dangerous and lofty cliffs where no ship or boat could live. As a man clinging tenaciously to life, the first thing I did was get out my knife, cut the lashings that fastened the long boat down to the deck. Just as I had the ropes all cut I wondered what next I could do, when a tremendous wave swept the deck clean of everything portable, including the boat I had just cut loose, and on which I thought our lives depended. We were now close to the rocky shore and the Captain shouted at the top of his voice through the terrible tempest of wind and wave crashing against the high, rocky cliff, to “take to the rigging”, as by this time every wave washed over the deck of the vessel. I had, after losing the boat, a good hold on the main mast shrouds. At the request of the Captain to take to the rigging, I found two of the crew crouched at my feet praying fervently. I will say here that at this moment, in the very jaws of death itself, I did not think we were lost. In mounting the rigging I shouted out to these two men, “This is no place to pray–save your lives!” Before I had gotten ten feet up the rigging a tremendous wave, in fact the largest I had ever seen, picked up the vessel bodily on its crest and landed it fifty feet above the low water mark. The other waves that came after were not of sufficient strength to move the great mass, lying as on a shelf on the side of a mountain. Another thing was in our favor: the tide was ebbing very fast, so much so the vessel was left above the reach of other waves. We did not wait for the tide to ebb, but everyone managed, some by jumping, and others by ropes, to reach the rugged rocks. There was but one accident, that of the mate who broke his leg by jumping on the rocks. While in the rigging, waiting to see if another wave would dislodge us, I had formulated a plan by which I could reach the rocks easiest. I came down from the rigging, ran out on the bowsprit and slipped down on the martingale, where I had but a few feet to drop. My first duty then was to help the mate, who had broken his leg, out of the reach of the receding waves. Finding that crew and officers were all saved, our next duty was to get ashore and secure provisions, water, and sails to build shelter, for we knew not how long we would have to remain here before we would be discovered and rescued, for this was a barren island, uninhabited, with cold and stormy weather. After the water had receded sufficiently to allow us to go on board safely, we unbent the sail, running riggings, provisions, our clothing and firewood ashore, for we knew not what kind of a home we had. We found 100 feet above our vessel the island gradually sloped off on the land side down to the water’s edge. Here we concluded to build our tent and spend Christmas day. By this time the flood tide was coming in rapidly, and a little before daylight the waves, one after another, began shaking our vessel, which stood there majestically, with her mast still standing. Like the big wave that carried her up to her perch, another came and took her away from her snug roost. When about 500 feet from the shore both her anchors dropped about the same time, and thus she rode with her head into the wind, her anchors holding her fast, while the waves overwhelmed her, and often we could not see her for some moments. Finally the anchors dragged and allowed her coming nearer the shore when all at once a giant sea struck her and dashed her, mast and all against the rocks, a complete mass of kindling wood, ship, church and all, and afterwards strewed for many miles on this and adjacent islands. It was a horrid spectacle to see the noble craft, which myself and the Captain had for a home from the time we left Charleston the previous June (balance of crew were shipped at Liverpool), and there we were in the dead winter, shipwrecked on a barren island in a stormy clime at the time our friends were visiting and feasting in their cozy and comfortable homes. It was fortunate for us the moon was full (and in these latitudes the tides at these times are much higher than any other) or I no doubt would not be here to relate this unfortunate catastrophe.

After the vessel had disappeared we went to work to prepare a home with what wreckage we could pick up, and the sails we had rescued from our doomed ship. Some of the crew had gone to explore the island, others were burning what dry wood there was to attract our neighbors from other islands, and the cook had seen a tremendously large rooster, the only living thing to be seen. Where he came from was a conundrum, but he likely escaped from some previous wreck. However this might have been, the rooster was there, big and fat. As superstitious as sailors are, I had no trouble to make them believe that Providence place him there for our Christmas dinner. This rooster, by some means, had his wing broken, or it is doubtful whether we could have captured him at all, for he jumped from crag to crag, and was as tired as ourselves when captured. The cook was instructed by the captain to make the best use of what was sent to us, no doubt, from above. One of the men, being religiously inclined, was requested by the captain to make a prayer before sitting down to this sumptuous Christmas dish. In this way, in our humble abode, we relished our humble dinner as we never relished a dinner before. Thus we spent Christmas on a barren island, cut off from all the world. In a couple of days, finding wreckage floating about, the sturdy fishermen of an adjacent island, when the wind and waves had exhausted themselves, seeing the beacon light from our retreat, came out and took us with them to their own island, about ten miles distant. Here we found a small colony of ten or twelve families, among whom was a Mr. McDonald, Justice of the Peace and owner of the island. They lived close together and farmed small tracts of land, besides fishing. Arriving there we were treated very humanely by Mr. McDonald. There being no vacant houses he had a very respectable barn cleaned, putting in a fresh load of straw for our comfort during our stay. We resided here about eight days, gathering what part of the wreck we could collect, awaiting the sea to calm, for our only chance to get away was an open fishing boat to the Isle of Skye, a distance of about 25 or 30 miles. When it was useless to stay here longer we expressed to Mr. and Mrs. McDonald our wishes to get away. Our Captain had no money to pay us our wages, but consented to stay there and dispose of what was saved of the ship and church. The kind justice advanced one pound ($5) each and paid the boatmen for taking us to the Isle of Skye. Thus we left these kind and humble people, dwelling in content on a rough and stormy coast. Our next journey was on foot across the Isle of Skye, to Oban, ten miles distant. Oban is a small town, having a little business in small vessels with Glasgow and other places. After waiting here two days a small steamer, which traded between these islands, came along, and as we were shipwrecked seamen, gave us free passage to Glasgow. Here was a large seaport with vessels lading for all parts of the world. Most of the crew shipped for different places, but myself and one other wanted to go to Liverpool, as we had friends there who would help us in the dilapidated condition we were in. A large steamer was making regular trips between the two places carrying passengers and freight. I made application to the captain of this steamer for free passage stating our condition. He did not answer and as he did not refuse I took it for granted. St. George’s Channel on this passage was very rough, the sea continually breaking over the vessel, keeping us continually wet. Here during a cold and stormy night, crouched down in one corner, as hungry as I had ever been, I passed the night. Getting to Liverpool in the forenoon my spirits revived as we entered the dock, soon to be among friends. As soon as the stage to land passengers was put out I was the first to step out on it with a bag of soiled and water-soaked clothing, which I saved from the shipwreck and packed across the Isle of Skye, but our uniformed officer grabbed it from my hand, saying I could have it when I paid my passage. This was the meanest act I had yet seen. What could I do to resent this indignity, especially when the police were there at the fellow’s service? But I soon found friends, and my sister gave me money to redeem my historic wardrobe. After spending a few days in Liverpool and with my parents in Wales, I crossed over to France and remained there during the summer, and the fall of 1845 found me again in South Carolina.

Lewis Evan Jones Jr.
Wynot, Nebraska”


Lewis Evan Jones (1825 – 1910) — Mutiny on the Ocean Waves

The following document is a transcription from a photocopy of a letterpress set pamphlet style publication with colored paper wraps, measuring approximately 8 1/8” x 4 3/8”. Text pages number 36 pages. There is no date of publication, but the text is dated 1901 at the end of the story. The cover bears the following information; handwritten at the top of the wrap in ink (“No. 1.)”, title is indicated as “MUTINY ON THE OCEAN WAVE”, author is listed as “By LEWIS E. JONES, SR.”*, and imprint is “Herald Printing House, Hartington”.

* Note that Lewis E. Jones Sr. is actually indicated as Lewis Evan Jones Jr. for the sake of this archive, as his father’s name was also Lewis Evan Jones. Once in America, this author had a son, also named Lewis Evan Jones, who for the sake of this archive is denominated as Lewis Evan Jones III.

Note: In handwriting at the end of the editors note (between brackets) in the introduction is written “age 17” to indicate that Lewis Evan Jones was only seventeen years old when he participated in this voyage.


 

Mutiny on the Ocean Wave.

[The following story was written by Mr. Lewis E. Jones, from memory, and is vouched by him that every word is true and happened as it is written. This voyage was made by him from Liverpool to New York, from there to Baltimore, from there to Rotterdam, Holland, from there to Liverpool, thence to Charleston, South Carolina, in the ship St. Lawrence of New York, during the years 1842 – 43. – Ed.]

Short stories told now and then.
Relieve the craniums of some men;
Such cumbrous stuff is not to save,
Then why carry them with you to the grave.

291One day while strolling leisurely along the dockside of Liverpool, I heard two boys converse together, which attracted my attention. One said to his companion that the American ship St. Lawrence, of New York, lying in the Princess Dock, wanted a boy; that he was going to see if he could secure the place. This was near dinner time. After dinner I went down to that ship, and saw the mizzen royal flopping in the wind. This is the loftiest of the fourth sail on the third mast. One of the big boys spoken of was on his way up the rigging to furl this sail. He seemed very clumsy and slow getting up the rigging, and when he got up did not know how to gather the sail together so as to make a neat job of it. I noticed a man whom I learned was the chief mate, watching him from the dock. After he had made several attempts, the mate called him down. The boy walked off crest-fallen. After he had disappeared, I walked up to the mate, thinking that this was his way of finding out what a boy could do, I asked him if I could go up and furl that sail. He asked where I had learned to furl such sails. Answering him that many times a day in the Mediterranean it was my business to furl the royals, while the men were at the heavier sails. He doubted that such a small boy as I was could furl such sails in heavy winds. It was blowing quite stiff at this time. Finally he said I could try. I went aboard, doffed my jacket, and went up the rigging one a trot, getting out on the royal yard, gathering the sail on one side and then the other, passing the gaskets around, gathering the slack of the sail in the center, passing around a netting made for that purpose, I had the bunt in the center like a drum, all in ship shape. I descended the rigging as lively as I went up, picking up my jacket and walked where the mate stood, watching my every movement. He also walked towards me without saying a word, handing me a card which instructed the shipping master who was shipping a crew for this ship, to place me on the list. There were many of these shipping masters in Liverpool, as well as every large seaport. When a ship has taken in all her cargo, the captain a few days previous instructs one of these shipping masters to ship so many men for his ship, to sail on such a day for such a place. Master-riggers with a gang of men having bent all the sails, examined all the rigging, replacing all the defective, you will understand this was an American ship, all hands had abandoned her, when in fact they had no right to leave until she arrived at some designated port in the United States. When men are not properly treated, they abandon their ships at the first opportunity. This was the case with the St. Lawrence. Not one left but the captain, first and second mates.

Mr. Moore I found was the name of the first mate, who had given me the card, instructing the shipping master to ship me at $10 per month, and come aboard next morning. The men received $15 per month. She was bound for New York with a general cargo and 300 Irish passengers.

Captain Brown I found in the morning, a perfect gentleman, looked more like a clergyman than a sea captain. He took me to the cabin and talked very kind with me, inquiring about my nativity, relatives, etc. He seemed to be well pleased with me, instructing me to come to him if I should want anything during the voyage. He asked me to take care of the cabin until he could engage a steward, and gave me perfect liberty to make the cabin my home should he get a rough crew – he knew not what kind of men the crew would turn out to be, for he had never seen one of them. I thanked him very much, but stated that I would like to be with the men as much as possible, that I went to sea not of necessity, but to learn to become a seaman. He commended my resolution and promised to assist me in my endeavors.

In three days after this ship was ready for sea, and the crew came on board as well as the passengers. We went out of the Princess Dock and dropped anchor in the Mersey. Next morning the captain came on board, ordered the anchor to be raised and sails set loose. I loosed the three sails on the royal masts, by order of the mate, for he had learned, he said, I was an expert with these light sails. Most of the men were heaving up the anchor. When I came down the rigging, I took hold of the long leaver, for she had what was then called patent windlass – two long levers working up and by 15 or 20 men. When I took hold of the lever the next man to me was a splendid, fine looking man. His bronzed face indicated he had seen service in the tropics. This was the first time I had ever seen him, but he struck me as an ideal seaman, such as I would like to pattern after. He wore a red flannel shirt, white duck pants and a jaunty straw Manila hat on his head. He smiled on me as I took hold of the leaver by his side. I was glad to be noticed by such a powerful and perfect man as I considered him to be. Whilst I was doting on him the mate came along with loud curses on his lips, telling the men that they were not half heaving; passing along after abusing nearly all the men, he came to where I was. He was rolling up his shirt sleeves, for he had taken off his coat before. He roared out, “you man, with the red shirt, why don’t you heave?” This shipmate, for I was glad to call him such, answered he was doing his duty. At this the mate jumped about with his clenched fist, saying he was the first man he would commence on when we got under way. The man with the red shirt paid no attention to his threats, only he turned to me and thanked the mate for this timely warning, so that he could be on his guard. After the mate had left, he smiled on me and said, “if I am the first he is going to pick on, he will have a tough chicken to pick.” Thus we left Liverpool with fair wind and all sails set.

The first thing when a ship is well underway is to divide the crew into two watches, when all the men are assembled on the quarterdeck. Thus we were all ordered to come aft, and the division was made, by the captain having the first choice, named the man at the wheel. The mate then selected the man whom he called “the man with the red shirt.” Then the captain made another choice, then the mate, and so on until whole crew were selected, and the watches formed. On this particular occasion the men were all selected, the mate had to take me, for I was the last. I was glad that the man with the red shirt was on the same watch with myself. I had taken a great liking to him and he also to me. We were strangers to one another. I had never seen one of them before. However, that night, when on watch, I learned from my newly made friend, the man wearing the red shirt, was a countryman of mine, who lived in a small seaport only twelve miles from my home. He also informed me there were two other men on board from the same place, one of whom was on our watch. He stated they always sailed on the same ship – they had been together in the English and American Navies, and had been together for many years in vessels of both nations. I was glad to learn I had countrymen on board, the first I had since I went to sea. The name of my friend with the red shirt was Jack Thomas, the other in our watch was named Dick Lewis, and the one in the captain’s watch was named John Evans. There was another young man in our watch that I had taken a liking to. He was a native of New York City, named Wm. McFarlane, whom we called Yankee Bill. All this crew were more intelligent than the common run picked up in foreign ports.

After a few days out from Liverpool we had very high winds and disagreeable weather. The sea was very rough. The poor passengers were very sick and suffered much. The captain had appointed me store keeper to deal out water and provisions to the emigrants. At that time steerage passengers in sailing vessels had so much water and provisions dealt out to them daily. At night I had to stand watch like the balance of the crew. It is the custom on all ships to wash the decks every morning at six o’clock, whether they need washing or not. On the third or forth morning out of Liverpool, the weather was very stormy and the sea running high. Buckets, scrubbing brushes, brooms, etc., were brought out for that purpose, when the mate came forward and ordered Yankee Bill to go out on the fore poop deck to wash to pump water to wash decks. We had a small hand pump, such as is used in cisterns, for that purpose, on the larboard bow. The wind was blowing almost a gale on that side, and sea splashing over continuously. The men all wondered at the mate giving such an order, when water was plentiful on deck. Bill told him he could furnish all the water required from lee-scuppers, as the water was almost knee deep as the ship careened over. This would not satisfy the mate. Bill dipped up water in buckets as fast as required. The mate became boiling mad because his orders were disobeyed. He walked back to the stern of the ship and took an iron belaying pin out of the rail. These pins were used where very heavy weight is to be sustained, otherwise wooden pins are to be used. These iron pins are about a foot in length and one and a quarter inches in diameter. With one of these pins in his hand he rushed to where Bill was filling water buckets. He aimed a full blow with this weapon on Bill’s head, but the ship plunged at the moment and he only received a light blow on the side of his head. Bill was bleeding profusely. At that moment Jack Thomas came like a flash of lightening, grasping the iron bolt from the mate’s hand and threw it overboard, telling Bill he was a better man than Mr. Moore, to settle his grievance there and then, and he would see no one should interfere. By this time Bill had the mate more than a foot of water with his foot on his neck. The ship was rolling and plunging, the water rushing backward and forward, so that occasionally Mr. Moore could see about him. He saw and begged me to call the captain, for I was an eye witness to the whole transaction.

The cooks gally was close by. The cook, a large negro hailing from Sierra Leone, a British West African Colony, rushed out of the galley with a large carving knife in his hand, to the assistance of the mate. Dick Lewis, who had come on the scene, saw the negro rushing into the fray, gave him such a blow under the ear, that he also fell in the water by the side of the mate, while Dick Lewis disarmed him of the knife, throwing it overboard.

They did not mutilate the two prostrate me, but made them swallow their fill of salt water. At this time I thought it my duty to call up the captain and the second mate, who were asleep in the cabin, informing captain Brown the men were killing Mr. Moore. He hurriedly slipped on his pants, boots, and coat, rushing on deck with a cutlass in his right hand (a short sword about a foot and a half long) and a book containing the riot act in the other. By the time he came on deck the men had released the half drowned bullies. Mr. Moore, like a drowned rat, went to his room to put on dry clothes. The negro went to the gally, where he barricaded himself, swearing he would scald the first man who came there.
The captain instructed me to tell the first watch to come on the quarterdeck. All the men came cheerfully. The first thing the captain did was to read the riot act, from the book he brought with him from the cabin, whilst I held his cutlass. After this reading he commenced to examine witnesses to get at the origin of the riot. Jack Tomas was the first witness to the whole affair. While he was explaining the mate’s actions, gentlemanly and cool, Mr. Moore leaped on deck, passing the captain and myself, who were standing before the men, pulled out a heavy claw hammer from under his coat-tail, and made a desperate attempt to strike Jack Thomas in the head with the hammer. Dick Lewis, who stood by the side of his friend, saw the mate’s movements, jumped to the front of him, receiving quite a cut on his head. In less time than it takes to write this, Jack Thomas knocked him down. Whilst both him and Dick Lewis, who was bleeding, took the cutlass from me and threw it overboard, together with the hammer taken from the mate. After this the men carried Mr. Moore to the cabin and placed him in bed.

Here were men well formed by nature
In deadly combat for their rights;
The elements above and the waters below,
Protesting against these unholy fights.

The men after this went forward to consult the other watch, which was called yup for breakfast, who knew nothing of what had taken place during the morning watch.

After learning all that had taken place, and fully argued among themselves, they came to the conclusion to send word to the captain, through me, for I was the only confidant both sides had, and to tell the truth I had seen the whole trouble, besides hearing Mr. Moore’s threat while hoisting anchor at Liverpool, that the whole affair rested on his shoulders, and that he received nothing more than he deserved.

The decision of the men of both watches was that the mate should be put out of commission, that the captain could find a man among the crew fully as able as Mr. Moore, to take his place until we arrived at New York, and if they violated any law they were willing the courts to decide.

Receiving this message, I went to the cabin, to tell him the decision of both watches. He tried hard to pump out of me if Jack Thomas and Dick Lewis were not the leaders, and that they were bad men. I told him what Mr. Moore had said and threatened the first time he ever saw them when hoisting anchor in the river Mersey. I told him also that the two men he mentioned were gentlemen in every sense of the word, and by what I had seen of them, they had a perfect right to defend themselves as they did, and if they did not, I would consider them craven cowards, that all this unfortunate affair was entirely the work of Mr. Moore.

He sent the second mate on deck to take charge of the ship, and told me after breakfast to come to him, so that I could carry his decision to the men. After breakfast the men waited to know what to do, and I went to find out what the captain had decided on. He inquired of me which of the men I thought the most capable for the position of mate, for he had seen very little of them. I told him that I had never seen a single one of them in my life before they came on board his ship, and it was not right for me, a mere boy, to give advice to a man of his mature age, but if he would allow me to give my opinion, – if it had not been for the unfortunate occurrence that had happened, Jack Thomas or Dick Lewis could have filled the position with honor, but since neither of the two could be considered, there was a man in his watch that I thought well suited to take the place. He is of a mature age, a sailor every inch of him, had the appearance of having seen much service. He is of course in your watch, but you should take one from the mate’s watch, to keep the division even. If you want my advice, I have but formed little friendship with the crew thus far, I would appoint Mr. Mitchell, second mate, to be first mate, in place of Mr. Moore, and take a man from your own watch for the place of second mate, who will always be under your eye. That man, I opine, you already have in your mind – it is old John Evans, the oldest and one of the most able among your crew.

The captain seemed surprised at the able advice given him by a person of my age. He, however, seemed to be pleased with my logic. He considered for a moment and then told me he would like to speak with John Evans. In passing out of the cabin I had to pass Mr. Moore’s room, and saw that he had been listening to our conversation, for the door was partly open. He had partly recovered from the terrible beating he had received. Arriving on deck I saw the men sitting on some spare spars always carried in case of accidents. They were conversing about the output, which they called “Mutiny”.

I told John Evans the captain would like to speak with him. He went down to the cabin. He was down about half an hour and arranged with the captain to work his watch while Mr. Mitchell would take Mr. Moore’s place. When this became known to the crew they were delighted, for everyone on board loved and respected old John Evans, the oldest man on board, and the one who had seen the most service on all the oceans of the world. From this out we had a pleasant voyage, but sometime very rough. We arrived in New York in four weeks, dropping anchor in the river, the captain going ashore in a boat. While in harbor at anchor two men at a time keep watch all. I was on watch from 10 to 12. In the morning it was discovered that six barrels of the cook’s grease (this grease is part of the cook’s emoluments) the brass bell on the poop deck, several ropes and light sails had disappeared during the night. No one seemed to know anything about them. Ten men had been on watch during the night, no one seemed, or pretended to know anything about them. The captain came in a tug-boat which took us to the wharf. A dozen or more boarding house runners with hacks ready to dispatch the crew with their respective baggage to their respective houses were on the dock. In less than ten minutes all the crew had abandoned the ship, and no effort was made to trace the robbery of the night before, as there were several bum-boats visiting vessels at anchor that night, likely it was sold to them more for revenge than depravity. The crew had received as they always do, a month’s wages in advance at Liverpool, therefore they had no pay coming to them. Mr. Moore did not appear on deck after he was deposed. I went ashore with the men, since the voyage was at an end, therefore not wanted. In this way I boarded for about a week, the boarding master promising me he would get a good ship in short time. I was getting tired and did not know how to pass the time away.

One fine morning sitting on a bench in Central Park, Capt. Brown came and sat by my side, asking me what made me leave his ship in the way I had. I told him it was my understanding that all crew leave when the voyage is at an end. He said he did not want me to leave, and asked if I would not like to go with him another voyage. I asked if Mr. Moore was still with him. He said he was, that Mr. Moore was a good man, but once in awhile a little hot-headed, that he would be kind to me. I told him if Mr. Moore would treat me right I would go with him another voyage. He was pleased and gave me ten dollars to pay what I owed my boarding house and bring my clothes on board. Next morning I went down to where the St. Lawrence was. I did not see anyone on board, so I took my clothes down to the forecastle, took off my best clothes and put on a working suit. Coming on deck the first person I saw was Mr. Moore. He asked me what business I had on board. I told him Capt. Brown had hired me, and asked what he had for me to do. It seemed that my presence was not agreeable to him. He walked off without saying another word. I picked up a broom and commenced sweeping the deck, seeing nothing else I could do. I went over several times, thinking that he could see I was only killing time. After some time thus employed, I went down the forecastle, intending to change my clothes and go ashore, for I did not deserve to be treated in this way.

After sitting down a short time thinking of how to act, I heard the voice of Captain Brown on deck giving some orders. I went up and told him I was there according to promise, what work did he want me to do. He asked me to come with him to the cabin, where he told me that he was going to take in ballast and sail for Baltimore, for he had engaged to take a cargo of tobacco to Rotterdam, Holland.. All he had for me to do was to act as watchman and take care of the cabin until the crew were shipped, when he would have a steward employed, or if I wished he would keep me as steward. I thanked him for his kind offer, but declined for the reason I stated to him before, that I went to sea for the purpose of learning to be a seaman, not a steward or sea cook. He saw my point and said I was perfectly right. For the present he hoped I would take care of the ship and gave me the keys of the state room. He said that Mr. Moore was perfectly satisfied that I would take care of the ship, which would give him more time to visit his relatives for he had many in New York. By degrees Mr. Moore and myself became friends, for the reason I never had been his enemy. When he had trouble at sea with the men, he knew it was his own fault and I told him so more than once. Because I lived with the men forward I did not consider I lived with brutes, but with men who knew their rights and were able to maintain them. We lived thus about ten days. I always showed him civilities his position entitled him to receive.

On Sunday morning, the second I had spent in New York, I walked along the wharves on East River, looking on all the large ships lying there, I spied a number of drays bringing provisions to a large, full rigged ship, according to amount, I thought she was destined for a long voyage. By inquiring I found the ship was called Columbia, bound for New Zealand on a trading which might take several years before her return. I was surprised to see my old friend John Evans in full command. He saw me and invited me to come on board. I found by him that through the influence of some captains he had sailed with before, he got the position of chief mate, that Jack Thomas was second mate, Dick Lewis, boatswain, their newly made friend, Yankee Bill, was with them before the mast. In remarking what strange coincidence that they should be together again on the same ship, old John Evans, who had been with them for many years, said he could not go without them, they were as worthy as any men who ever trod a ship’s deck, and as true as steel. I saw the whole four in prime health and spirits. Jack Thomas jokingly remarked to old John Evans that he should share the extra pay he got from the St. Lawrence as mate, with me, for it was me who got him the position. The old man put his hand in his pocket and handed me a ten dollar gold piece, which he insisted on me to take. I was never more glad than to see those men on a good ship, but in all probability, would never see them again. The ship soon after cleared the harbor with fair wind and all sails set. I made up my mind never to mention their names when Mr. Moore was present.

In the course of ten days we shipped a new crew at New York for a run to Baltimore. These men were all foreigners, Sweeds, Danes, Norwegians, and all from the northern part of Europe. There was not an American or Englishman among the crew. The weather was stormy and the passage rough. Mr. Moore as usual finding there was not an Englishman nor an American among the crew, commenced his brutality on them as he had done before. I felt sorry for them but knowing they came from military empires, where a poor man has no right to protest against their superiors. However the poor fellows were glad to reach land, for they had only shipped for the run from New York to Baltimore.

Having discharged ballast and taken on a cargo of tobacco for Rotterdam, Holland, we shipped another crew, a duplicate of the last, Mr. Moore had a lively time kicking and knocking these men to his entire satisfaction. I was treated humanely, and as these men had no spirit to defend themselves I had nothing to do but pity them. It took us two months to reach Rotterdam. As usual the men all deserted, leaving a months wages behind. I was pleased to find that some of the men were acquainted here, who went to an old Jew merchant and made arrangements with him to pawn all their wages, half cash and half clothing, this accomplished they all deserted. In a few days the old merchant came down to the captain with the bills, which he refused t pay because they had deserted. The old fellow did not seem to care much for this refusal, but smiled and took considerable snuff.

This vessel made considerable money by making it untenable for the men to stand the abuse. We had shipped in Baltimore two Chinamen, one for cook the other steward. They were fine, quiet, gentlemanly and remarkably clean, understanding their business thoroughly. The mate found they were packing up to leave, had them put in irons and fastened to the ringbolts below decks, for he did not want them to leave as they were experts at their business. They called me to the cabin to act as steward while we remained at Rotterdam. I had these two men to wait on as well as the officers. The second mate acted as cook. The first opportunity I had, my resolution was put in force. I went straight to the American Consul and told him there were two American citizens, for such they had become on board the American ship St. Lawrence in irons. He told me very surely he would see to it. The next day he came down in his carriage, and arm in arm with Captain Brown, went down to the cabin, drank a bottle of champagne, then both came on deck, the captain taking him to his carriage, and shook hands very cordially. In an hour or two the Chinamen were released. The first opportunity they had (the mate having gone ashore on business) they left the ship, thanking me, for they suspected I had been the cause of their release, and said I could have all their effects left behind, consisting of fine clothing, hair mattress and fine blankets to the value of $200. In a couple of weeks we had unloaded our cargo and taken in ballast for Liverpool. A new crew had been shipped, something of the same character as the last. Just as we were ready to cast off two officers came on board and told us not to touch the cables with which the ship was fastened. They told the captain that the Jew merchant had got a judgment against the ship for the sailors wages which had to be paid before we could leave. Nothing could be done but pay the judgment with costs. Captain Brown told me, for I was the only confidant all hands had, that it was preposterous to make him pay when the men were deserters. I reminded him that when in Venice we had to comply with the laws of Venice. We were delayed a long time in a canal coming out of Rotterdam on account of stormy weather and head winds. We made a long voyage to Liverpool, but when we reached there, the crew, as usual, deserted. I could not leave for I had too much wages coming to me. They treated me kindly, and all I had to do was act as watchman. I was allowed to board with a friend, and night watchman hired. No fires are allowed in Liverpool docks, consequently everyone has to board ashore.

Here we found a cargo of general merchandise for New York, and I made up my mind to leave when we reached there, as my voyage would expire then. The crew we got here were but little better than the last two or three we had run across, for we had few Americans and Englishmen among them. We did not have such men as Jack Thomas, Dick Lewis and John Evans, who dared to do right in any position they were placed. Mr. Moore had many of these men under his thumb. We had a long and stormy voyage. Our masts were sprung, so that we could carry but little canvas. Provisions and water giving out rapidly. Many vessels spoke us and offered. We refused every offer. The mate getting uglier daily. I was determined to make some effort to get better treatment. I spoke with several of the men that we should go boldly and inquire of the captain the reason for refusing assistance when offered, and we on short allowance. I could get no one to go with me, but went alone. Captain Brown had always been my friend, and was not averse to speak with me on the subject. He stated the reason he refused assistance was that we had been long on the passage and the voyage had been disastrous to the owners financially. He asked me to inform the men that if the wind continued in the same direction it was in for two days longer we would be in Charleston, S.C., for we had already passed the stormy Cape Hatteras, that in the condition the masts were in he had to run in the direction the wind blew. We had sailed more than one thousand miles beyond our destination – New York, he begged the sympathy of the men in his unhappy condition. He thanked me for acting as medium between him and the crew.

I went forward where the men were waiting the result of my visit. I passed Mr. Moore on the way. He looked daggers at me but said nothing. I explained to the men what the captain informed me, with a great deal of sympathy in my words. All were glad to know were we were, but were surprised that we were near Charleston in place of New York. They all agreed to take things as they were, for a few days at least, hoping soon to be ashore. That evening when our watch was on deck from eight to twelve o’clock, Mr. Moore came forward and ordered me to fore top sail yard to keep lookout for land. Thinking nothing wrong, as this is always a rule when nearing land at night. I felt very sleepy and fearing to fall asleep I tied myself to the halliards so I could not fall off, finding a gasket on the yard for that purpose. I had been there about two hours and thought it was near twelve o’clock when the watches changed, and a man come to relieve me. All at once the yard went down without notice given, and came down with a thud. It was well I had the foresight to lash myself to the halliards and went down with it, as the sudden jar would sure throw me overboard. When I came down on the deck the bell struck eight bells and the watch relieved. Mr. Moore was jumping about the deck saying he would kill the man who let go of the top sail halyards if he knew who he was. I said nothing, but suspicioned it was him who was guilty.

Next day in the forenoon watch he came to me, said he thought next day we would be in Charleston, all the hands were busy cleaning the paint work as was the custom. He ordered me to get a pail of water and ashes and scrub the martingale. I knew this was a risky job with the swell that was then in the sea. This martingale reached within five or six feet of the water and when the ship plunged it often dipped. The voyage was then so near up that I did not wish to disobey my superior officer, willingly went at it. The vessel often plunging until my feet was in the water, and dozens of dog fishes, a species of shark, trying to get at them. Little scrubbing was done by me and glad to hear the sound of the eight bells, when I came up on deck and the other watch coming on duty. I pretended to be cheerful, but my mind was far from being so. That evening we sighted land, and the next forenoon we landed at one of the wharves of Charleston, S.C. having been ninety days out from Liverpool. The captain soon went ashore.

I was glad this unpleasant voyage was at an end. As soon as the vessel was fastened I went down to the forecastle to change and pack up my clothes and go ashore. Mr. Moore came to the companionway and said that the Captain wanted me to came and take care of the cabin, for the sheriff had taken the cook and steward to jail during the vessel’s stay in port. This was the law then, when slavery was in full force, and half the city’s population being slaves, free negroes talked too much politics to the slaves therefore, would have no access to them. He told me the ship had to have new masts and rigging, which would consume about seven or eight weeks, the captain was going to New York, there would be only him, second mate, and myself in the cabin, and the captain had gone ashore to find a negro woman for cook and my work would be light. I told him this was the opportunity I had been looking for, that I could help and learn to rig a ship and that it would be a school for me. He would not listen to this philosophy, but must come to the cabin. I told him plainly that I could not think of it, as it had come to this my voyage was up, and I was going ashore. He said I could be arrested as a deserter. I then stated I had signed articles in New York to go from there to Baltimore, from there to Rotterdam, from there to Liverpool then to any port in the United States and thought I was now in a port of the United States and my voyage at an end. He went back to the cabin, got the articles, but I discovered and told him that those were the articles signed by the present crew to go from Liverpool to New York. I agreed with him that the voyage of these men was not up until they reached New York. Finding he could do nothing with me he walked off with curses on his lips, I walked ashore.

My first inquiries was for the Mayor’s office, and after walking quite a number of streets found the Mayor at his office in the court house. This was the same Mayor Brown, who a year after, sent to Liverpool for me as witness in a state case which I described in a story written to the News last Christmas. I explained to the Mayor that I wanted to part with my ship, and gave him my reasons for doing so, and whether I could collect the wages due me. He said the St. Lawrence was in the hands of the Underwriters, that the captain or owners had nothing to say until she was thoroughly repaired and ready for sea. I then asked the status of the men who shipped from Liverpool to New York. He answered that their voyages was also up as well as my own.

After I learned this I hired a spring wagon and went down after my clothing. I also informed the men of the result of my inquiry. Every man quit work and followed me up to town. We had not gone more than a quarter of a mile when the second mate overtook us and said the captain had sent him to inform us to come down next morning he would pay us all off. This was a jolly night for the crew of the St. Lawrence. All happy it terminated as it did.

Next morning we all went down on board the ship and settled with the captain satisfactory. I was the last and expected a good lesson for the part I had played, but the captain did not mention a word on what had passed. He had given me money on several occasions. I had kept an account of all sums I had received and told him the amount. He said, “never mind, that was my gift and not charged to you.” We shook hands on parting. He hoped I would prosper as I deserved.

In a few days the hands had scattered on different vessels and different destination. I found employment in a cotton press, where I often met Captain Brown. One day sitting down in the office he told me his ship repairs would soon be completed and asked me if I would go with him to Liverpool, as the ship was loaded with cotton and the riggers had nearly completed their work, another vessel had taken his freight to New York. I told him I would be glad to sail with him, but as long as Mr. Moore was on her I would not set a foot on the deck, not because I feared him physically, but feared his treachery. I told how he tried to throw me overboard from the topsail-yard and the way he sent me to scrub the martingale, hoping no doubt that sharks would get hold of me. Captain Brown was horrified at such villainy. He told me the reason for his being mate that he and his friends in New York were in New York were nine-sixteenths parts of the ship, while he and his friends owned but seven-sixteenths parts (you will understand that a ship is divided into sixteen parts or ounces as they are called, so that one man may own hundreds of ounces in different ships without owning a whole one.) The captain told me that he had tried many times to sell his interest but ship owners were so well acquainted with Mr. Moore, that they would not buy as long as Mr. Moore and his friends owned controlling interest. He also told me that the friends of Mr. Moore did not want to elevate him as captain. After hearing this I told him that as poor as I was I would not change positions with him. With this he left the office, parting as friends.

To finish this story I must tell what happened a few years after, when working on a weekly newspaper in a small town on the west of England – a watering resort. Many of the aristocracy living in the neighborhood, having parks and gardens extending down to the seashore, with sailing yachts anchored before their doors. With these they go on pleasure excursions often during fine weather in summer. They generally keep an old seaman by the year to take care of and the sail the small crafts. In summer they have regattas at the different water resorts, and set time to run at the different circuits. The editor of the paper on which I worked went around to report the incidents of the races. He asked me to go with him in his buggy, there was an exciting race to take place next day about fifteen miles from our town. Arriving there the little town was in its holiday attire, the yachtsmen in uniforms were the lions of the day. The morning turned out fine, but the wind blowed hard and the sea was rough for the small crafts that were there to test their valor. The course to run was about twenty miles. A ship was anchored at both ends which they had to go around. Twenty yachts were booked for the race. The programs were printed and held by most of the excited crowd, naming the yachts and captains of each by the flags displayed. Thousands from the surrounding country lined the shores and housetops and every avenue from which the race could be seen. At the firing of a gun they all started. The friends of each yacht straining every nerve to keep track of his favorite. The wind blew hard. Before the wind we could not judge which was making the best time. In coming back they had to beat against the wind, and here the tug of war was displayed. They had to tack more than twenty times from one side of the narrow straight to the other, for it was not more than a mile wide. One yacht would gain on the other and their positions changed often. The men on shore becoming excited and bets were changed from one craft to the other continually. In the last half hour a yacht called Arvonia and another called Dolphin seemed to gain gradually. It was a grand sight to see these small cutters ploughing through the water, carrying such large sails that they were almost on beam ends, covered literally by foam. On and on they came, changing positions often. Experts could see the Arvonia and Dolphin, though not the fastest, but better handled, stood good chance of winning. The best were high on these two boats. Sometime these boats could not be seen for the foam they made. When the Arvonia once came in sight it was with the topmast carried away. There was excitement, among those who had bet heavy on her, that can hardly be described. Just at this moment the wind freshened to about a gale. The top mast was quickly cut away, and the Arvonia, relieved of too much canvas, rushed forward like a wounded bull. She rounded the ship anchored for mark, the cannon fired as the signal, then the other slow craft Dolphin, in two seconds had the gun fired for her. The other yachts steered away and gave up the contest. That evening the people of the town gave a grand banquet to the yachtsmen. Our editor was presented with two tickets to the banquet, one for him and one for me. The mayor of the town presided at the table, with Capt. Thomas, of the yacht Arvonia, on the right and Capt. Lewis, of the Dolphin, on the left. In a neat speech he presented the first prize, a handsome gold goblet, to the gallant master of the cutter Arvonia. Capt. Thomas in a patriotic speech acknowledged the great honor done them by the hospitality of the little town. The second prize was then presented to Capt. Lewis, of the Dolphin, a miniature ship made of ivory, with rigging of gold thread. He also made a neat little speech in acknowledgment of the kindness they had received during their stay by the kind and happy of the town and surrounding country. Many others made patriotic speeches, commemorating the innocent and recreative pleasures of yachting. After the inner man had been satisfied the meeting broke up, with all present singing “Brittania Rules the Waves”.

In breaking up all the present took the two gallant captains by the hand, with great praise for the manner of handling their crafts.

I was considerably excited and waited till the last, when I took those two gallant tars by the hand, never having given a thought until I heard their voices that they were my shipmates on the ship St. Lawrence. Jack Thomas and Dick Lewis. I spent the next day with them on their yachts, for they were as glad to see me as I was to see them.

To end this story. They told me that when I saw them leaving New York, on the ship Columbia, they went to New Zealand and traded in the Orient about three years: that our old friend John Evans had died with cholera at Calcutta; that Yankee Bill had fell from the yard arm off Cape of Good Hope, and lost: that they were both married and settled down at their old home and lived comfortable and both were happy.

Peace to their ashes is the tribute of an old shipmate who has also retired from the hardships seen at sea.

Dear friends I’ll keep your memory green.
You were men when I was sweet sixteen:
No doubt you’ve paid the debt of nature.
Like gallant chiefs at last surrender.

Yours respectfully,

L. E. Jones, Senior
St. James, Nebraska, January 1, 1901.


Lewis Evan Jones Sr. (1795 – 1860) – Evidence of his radical affiliations and practices

Lewis Evan Jones Sr. (1795 – 1860) – Evidence of his radical affiliations and practices.

1] From the London Express: Saturday, July 26, 1817 – Page 4

“NORTH WALES CIRCUIT—Beaumaris, July 23.

Before Mr. Justice Maule. Libel. — The Queen on the Prosecution of John Lloyd against Joseph Davies and Robert Williams. — This was an indictment for libel. The prosecutor (plaintiff) is the surgeon at Llangefin, the defendant Davies a medical practitioner in the same neighbourhood, and the other defendant a schoolmaster at Newborough. The declaration charged the defendants with having caused to be written, printed, and published a false, scandalous, and malicious libel, reflecting on the character and skill of the plaintiff as a medical practitioner. — Mr. Welsby and Mr. Temple appeared for the prosecution, and Mr. Townsend for the defence. The libel was read at length, and never perhaps was so extraordinary a production produced in a court of justice, under cover of a dialogue between an Anglesey man and a Carmarthenshire man, replete with monstrosities and hyperbolical figures of speech of the most ludicrous description tending to the ridicule, and it might be to the injury, of the prosecutor. — On the part of the prosecution, the printer (Lewis Evan Jones Sr.), his son*, and wife were put into the box to trace the MS. (manuscript) and act of printing the same to the traversers. Other witnesses deposed to their having given publicity to the document so printed, and Mr. Lloyd, the prosecutor, swore that the libel in question had reference to himself. — Mr. Townsend addressed the jury with much force on the part of the traversers, and although he had no instruction to assail or call in question the character or skill of Mr. Lloyd, he much doubted bis good sense in not treating with indifference and contempt a pointless and unmeaning squib. The learned counsel next impeached the credibility of the witnesses for the prosecution, whose testimony he would overturn on the evidence of highly respectable witnesses. At the close of his address to the jury, Mr. Townsend called three witnesses, each of whom distinctly swore that Lewis Evan Jones, the printer, and first witness examined for the prosecution, admitted in their presence that Isaac Harris was the real author of the libel, and that Dr. Davies was an injured man — Mr. Temple replied, and the court summed up. The jury retired, and in a short time returned with a verdict of Guilty against both traversers. After some conversation between thee court and counsel, the verdict was taken. Guilty on the first five counts. Not guilty on the sixth. Mr. Temple prayed for judgment. — The sentence of the court was, that Davies be imprisoned for the space of four calendar months, and pay a fine of 60s; and that William be imprisoned two months. The term of Davies’s imprisonment was, at his own request, commuted to two calendar months, the fine being increased to 100s.”

* It is impossible that Lewis Evan Jones’s son was called as a witness at this trial, which occurred on July 23rd, 1817, as his eldest son, Lewis Evan Jones Jr. was not born until 1825. It is possible that the witness indicated here was an apprentice, possibly William Ellis Jones II (aka “Cawrdaf”) who was then about 22 years of age. It’s possible also that the witness in question was Cawrdaf’s younger brother, David Ellis Jones (born 1804), or his middle brother, Thomas Norcliffe Jones (born 1803), both of whom apprenticed at Lewis’ Carnarvon printing firm, and either one of whom could have been mistaken for Lewis Evan Jones Sr.’s sons.

 

2] From Ifano Jones – History of Printers and Printing in Wales and Monmouthshire, page 67.

“…That Robert Jones had left Conway to to settle at Pwllheli by 1828 is proved by the appearance of his name in Pigot & Co.’s directory for 1828 as ‘Jones Robert, stationer, printer, and sheriff’s officer, Penlan st.’, while his imprint appears on a book1 as early as March, 1829.

That he removed from Pwllheli to Bangor in 1834 is certain, for whereas his Pwllheli imprint appears in 1833 on ‘Natur Dyn… gan Griffith Jones’, his Bangor imprint appears in 1834 on ‘Galarnad… William Barnett… a fu farw… Gorphenaf yr 22, 1834 … Gan William Morgan, Caergybi.’ By 1835 he was printing at Bangor a satirical English newspaper entitled ‘Figaro in Wales’ a demy-folio sheet of four pages, treble columns, price 2d. No. 7 dated ‘Tuesday, September 1835′, bears the imprint, ‘Printed and Published for the Proprietors, by Robert Jones, at the Albion Office, Friars’ Place, Bangor,…where the Printing Business is carried on in all its departments.’ The scurrilous personal attacks of Figaro in Wales’, with its caricatures engraved by John Roberts, the Holyhead printer (son and successor of Robert Roberts, the Holyhead almanacer and printer, and grandson of Shon Rhobert Lewis), soon resulted in the publication of a similar paper, entitled ‘Anti-Figaro’, issuing from the printing-office of Lewis Evan Jones, Carnarvon2. Subsequently Robert Jones issued his paper ‘Philo-Figaro’3. The editors became so abusive of each other in their respective journals, that the officers of the Law put an end to the existence of both2, Robert Jones being proceeded against for libel ; and the Merionethshire Assizes held at Bala in March, 18364, he was mulcted in damaged to the tune of £2505.”

 

3] From the A Merioneth Family of Printers in Wales and the U.S.A. by Dr. Lewis Lloyd – The Journal of the Merioneth Historical and Records Society, Vol. XII (iv), 1997, we have the following insightful detail that captures the point of view expressed by Lewis Evan Jones Jr., son of Lewis Evan Jones (the elder), and is summarized by the author:

“…The reform agitation regarding parliamentary representation and local government at Caernarfon in the 1830’s, in which his father was actively engaged with the surgeon O.O. Roberts and other radicals, clearly made a lasting impression upon the growing boy…”[9]

A good deal later in Lewis Evan Jones Jr.’s reminiscences, writing from his new home in the Nebraska Territory after having traveled the world and having seen much of the United States, he recounts that he bought “…a steam sawmill and had a small printing office … the two most important things to civilize a new country…” [10]

 

4] Controversial Books Published that have survived the censors:

1832
1] Authors: Lloyd, Evan, 1734-1776.
Title: The curate
Description: 27 p.
Imprint: Printed at the Arvonian Press by L.E. Jones for Owen Owen Roberts, 1832
Annotation: Originally published about the year 1766.

1841
1] Authors: Uncredited
Title: Address to electors accusing William Buckeley Hughes of bribery
Description: 1 sheet 17 x 21 cm. Broadside
Imprint: Lewis Evan Jones, Printer, 1841
Annotation: Dated 1 July 1841. Probably published against the Conservative candidate, W. Bulkeley Hughes, by supporters of the Whig, Lord George Paget, in the Caernarvon Boroughs constituency at the 1841 election.

 


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The Daily Dahlia

Not so daily, but definitely Dahlia.

Irish in the American Civil War

Exploring Irish involvement in the American Civil War

To Preserve Family and Farm

A True Story of a Family's Encounter with Sherman's Army

Adventures in North Carolina Culture

The official blog of the N.C. Department of Cultural Resources

Crutchfield's Orthoglossary

Notes & Comment on Language, Spoken & Written

stillness of heart

MUSINGS : CRITICISM : HISTORY : PASSION

Fredericksburg Remembered

Musings on history, public history, and historic Fredericksburg

Stumbling in the Shadows of Giants

For the sins of your fathers you, though guiltless, must suffer. - Odes of Horace

Cenantua's Blog

As a Southerner and native of the Shenandoah Valley, I offer reflections on the Civil War-era South... and sometimes a little more. But... expect the unexpected

Southern Unionists Chronicles

Reflections on the lives and experiences of Southern Unionists, during and after the American Civil War

Daily (w)rite

A Daily Ritual of Writing

Mark Coakley

Author of "Hidden Harvest" and "Tip and Trade"

Eye-Dancers

A site devoted to the Young Adult sci-fi/fantasy novel The Eye-Dancers

Break Room Stories

Service Industry Stories and More Since 2012

Renaissance Richmond

Finding Architectural History and Following Historic Preservation in Richmond, Virginia

CardiffCataloguers

Cataloguing at Cardiff University

Alec Nevala-Lee

Thoughts on art, culture, and the writing life.

Virginia Historical Society's Blog

exhibitions, education, research, tours, bus trips, lectures, classes, collections, outreach, library, shop, and everything Virginia history!

chronicles of harriet

Steamfunk * YA Fiction * Sword & Soul

Raising Milk and Honey

The Farm at Middlemay

Mysteries and Conundrums

Exploring the Civil War-era landscape in the Fredericksburg & Spotsylvania region. Note: this blog is unoffical. All opinions expressed are those of the writers, and do not necessarily reflect the views of the NPS or its management.

Cultural Heritage & Information

Blog and Portfolio of Stacey Redick, Information Professional

jamesgray2

A discussion of interesting books from my current stock A WordPress.com site

Special Collections and Archives (SCOLAR) Casgliadau Arbennig ac Archifau

Showcasing Research Resources / Hyrwyddo Adnoddau Ymchwil

Vulpes Libris

A collective of bibliophiles talking about books. Book Fox (vulpes libris): small bibliovorous mammal of overactive imagination and uncommonly large bookshop expenses. Habitat: anywhere the rustle of pages can be heard.

Historic Collections at Senate House Library

Showcasing our rare books, manuscripts, archives, historic maps, artefacts and artworks

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