The Great Voyage:
Forbes to Australia
Going 13 Nots all Night. A very sharp Squall
about 2 0 Clock this morning which carried away one of our Jib Stansels going
well all day. We were I I - I I S of the Line which is well. Rather Hot. A few
fights and Music closed the day.
Going first rate the same as yesterday at 12 0 Clock
15-1 So of the line going 220 miles in the day. Prayers on Board as usual. A
very fine day and this morning was like an August one in England.
5am. 6th. Sunday.
An American Trader crofs our
Bows just now.
Going first rate
averaging 10 Nots an Hour. A little Squall at times. Met an Homeward Bound Ship
for London from Melbourne. The Northern Balance with a number of Pafsengers on
board besides 2 more that we could not Signal. A lovely day. Very hot. Music
etc. and they played very nicely.
Gone 1st rate all night Squally as usual. Wann with
Showers. We are now off Trinadad and very near Rio Janeiro. We are going a
little to much West about 22 Degrees South of Line making a good pafsage so far
S.E. Trades has done well for us. I took out my Raceing game for the 1st time.
The Captn and Pafsengers much took up with it.
Going 1st rate all Night and in a right Course. Royal
Helliaides and Hansells set one of Jews got nearly put in Chains this afternoon
for being Saucy to the Mate. A fine day but warm. We got out of the tropics
this morning. Music cards and Gambling the order of the day as well as Auctions
on Deck. People getting short of cash. There is no more beer and porter to be
got and but little Wine. I dont think its all gone only stopd for a While to
let their pockets recover.
are now out of the S.E. trades going pretty well. I got up a raffle for the
Captain today. The 4 Mate won the watch. Steering S.E. by E. the wind keeps
Not going so well to
day. The Breeze slack and much colder. We can all sleep in our Births now. Got
wet last night in a Squall. It flow to my legs and Have Layd a Bed all day.
Better in the Morning. I hope I can Hear her canvafs FLapping so we are not
going much. We are now abreast of the Cape and expect R. Weather. Cape Hens and
flying fish Has been seen today (Rows with the Irish). One got in Chains for
threatening the life of Mrs McDonald [wife of the Chief Mate].
Steering S by East going 12 Nots nearly all day.
Held a Court Martial on the Irishman. Was on the Jury. We found Him Guilty. Was
sentenced to 9 days in Irons and Kept on Bread and Water. A very wet afternoon.
Music and singing in the Cabin and a cold evening. We are now South of Cape G
Going 12 Nots all day. S by East with a Cloudy
atmosphere and enclined to be foggy. A plenty of Birds and fish to be seen.
Prayers on Board and this is our 7th on Board and shall think ourselves well
off if do not get more than 4 more. She told me this morning I was to go to the
Saloon and get Grog when I required it for the Loan of my Boards. A Ship in
sight this afternoon. I walked the Deck all morning as there was a Sail AHoy
about 11 We burnt Blue lights to each others and let up Rockets. We came close
up to Her about 2 and spoke Her. The Ship Harry Fielding with pafsengers on
Board for Melbourne. She left Liverpool 7 days before us and Had fever on
Board. It was a very pretty sight in the night.
A fine Breeze all day. S. S.E. Another man in chains.
Sighted another Vefsell ahead. Got up by Her. She was the Eagle from N York.
Sailed the 25th July. Being 90 days out bound for Botnay Bay. A squall took
away our main Hansen for us. The sea Has been rough all day. Albatrosses, Cape
Hens and Pigeons are plenty here.
A fine Breeze all day. Going well at 2 Points of
East. A great deal of shouting goes on now at the Birds around the Ship But I
Have seen none Killd. We are now a long way from the Cape. The Captain is on
Deck almost night and day watching the Sails and Helm and theres no doubt but
we shall make a quick pafsage. Music on Deck and night most of the people are
below as its so cold. Cards and Singing are the Amusement with
Nearly a Calm all day. The
Breeze Sprung up towards the evening. A Heavy Swell made the Ship very uneasy.
Warmer today than it has been. Music and every kind of fun going on. Managing
the Gals and such like one Had a deal too much and fell down the Hatchway. From
the 27th April up to the 4th of May on Wednesday nothing of any consequence
occurred, there being a fine Breeze all the time. Sometimes 1/2 a Gale and a
Heavy sea which made us Roll awful. Breaking Plats (Dishes upsetting forms
giving Young Ladies Black Eyes by being thrown from their births, Upsetting
Soup, Breaking Legs, Heads and so forth. Pafsengers tumbling from one end of
the Deck to the other and sometimes flowing with Soup Belonging to the Lower
Deck Pafsengers. Halld before the Captain for Fighting as Have many others.
Fights and Rows are the order of the day. A1 through Whiskey. We are now in the
Latt 44.38 and Long 16 1/4. We have Had 4 extraordinary days Sailing in
succession averaging nearly 300 miles per day going 14 Nots now. Therm stood 52
on Deck this morning which made a change of 80 degrees in 16 days - Had a good
Dinner to day and an Hour of Punch after its required. Now we are getting so
cold. South Great Coats and Shawls are in great request. The 2nd May we Had a
severe Hail Storm Here while you Had a Beautiful May day in England. The next
time I wright my log I expect Snow will be on the Deck as I intend doing it
only once a week for the future. We are going on so nicely I should say we must
be in Melbourne the latter part of May.
the 4th of May up to Wed the I I th one week Friday night last we had very
rough wind. 1/2 a Gale it took away 4 Sheets from us, the fore sail fore top
Sail, Main Staysail and with the wind being too rough to put up Fresh Canvas we
were oblidged to lay too which threw us out a Day nicely but since then Have
made up for it. We Have Had a strong Breeze all this week and likely to
continue. Averaged our 300 miles to day. 342 miles one day. It has been very
cold. Snow, Rain and Sleet. Its snowing fast now, Saturday, with the Lat.
44-20, Long 34.50 and today Lat 50, Long 50. The man that Broke His Leg died on
Sunday from the effects of it and was Buried the same evening. This has been a
very quiet week as regards rows. They have been more Happy together. We were
out 8 weeks on Sunday. I fancy its only so many Days and the Idea of my being
in Melbourne the week after next. There is not much going on Deck now, its so
cold. Music and singing, reading and such like is the order of the day, with
concerts in the evening. We stay in our Births all day and Bum 2 Lamps to heat
it and read and write. I am now reading the Mysteries of London, and its
Horried for a young man to read it, being a funny affair. I can stick to it any
From May the I I th to Wed. May the l8th we Have Had
a lovely week of weather as fine as a Sailor can wish for and as good a Breeze.
Squalls and snow. Sleet and Cold. The order of the week.
We sighted the Island of Desolation on Saturday about 4 in the afternoon, the
exact time the Captain said we should, which proves that Hes a good navigator.
Just as we sighted it a tremendous Hail Squall sprung up which lasted some
time. Had we not at that time within 10 Minutes we must Have been on the Rocks
as we were going at a precious rate. Its a long and large Island with Mounds of
Rocks laying out in the Sea, which Has the appearance of Iceburghs at a
distance. We saw 2 Wales last Sunday very near the Vefsel. We were Lat 50, Long
70 East Saturday/Long 94 1/2 today Wednesday. Made 314 Miles the last 24 Hours.
The thermometer stands 30 on Deck this morning. Decks covered with Snow and
Bitter and cold this morning. Snowballing the order of the morning. A man put
in chains for Striking the Captain also the Baker and Cook in Limbo. Nothing
else particular Has occurd. The Captain Has guaranteed to land us and our
Luggage to Melbourne wharf for I0s each. I hope we shall sight Land this day
From Wed 18th up to Wed 23rd May this has been a
very rough week of Weather. We Had Had one Sharp Gale of wind this Week taking
away more of our Sails which we are very short of, which detained us again a
little. We saw a very large Ice Burgh on Sunday about 10 times as big as the
Marco Polo. A grand sight it was. Just at day break with the Breakers flying
again and it is Lat 51, Long 104 East. It Has been much warmer this week.
Another man died last night and was buried this morning in the usual way - (in
a Decline). All the live stock is used up, the last of the Mutton and Pork
today with the exception of a Sow and a few Half Starved Fowls. There has been
2 large black swans seen today supposed to have come from the Swan river in
Australia. They are all now getting anxious for sighting of Land and Betting
officers open Backing against the steamers. A Source just reached me 20 to 1
that Lord Scots River wins the Derby in 1853.
23rd to Sunday May 29th the Good Sailing and nothing particular occurd until
Satturday Evening when we sighted the light House at Cape Hottaways at 8 0
Clock in the evening. Wind right aft and 10 0 Clock Shortened Sail and in the
middle of the night A Cry of a Sail at which we soon got up too and Spoke Her.
The first Vefsel we had seen for a month or 5 weeks and twas quite Cheering.
She proved to be the Hallifax from London 116 Days out and the Dutch Captain
was quite flabberghasted when He was informed we were out only 73 days. Got
through the Heads at 8 in the morning when a pilot got on Board and Cast Anchor
Hobson's Bay at 2 0 Clock on the Sunday amidst the
deafening Cheers of the Crew and pafsengers thus ending one of the quickest
pafsages on record, beating his last voyage by a few hours only and for 12 days
on the Line we did not go more than 120 miles, beating the Antelope the
Australian Steamer and about 10 other Vefsels that were raceing for very Heavy
Bets. But its no use in trying to beat the Marco Polo Steering East and N East.
The bay is full of ships. There was a Chines Vefsel went down last night in the
Bay. 180 lives lost. Melbourne is now in sight and quite a sight to see the
tents pitched along the Beach. The Country appears very level and very green
considering its now within 3 weeks of the Midst of their Winter. We all go
ashore to Morrow in Hopes of getting hold of some Dust as there is good news
from Melbourne and the Diggings. Machey near Melbourne is the last Discovery.
Lodgings are plenty.
Captain Mackay of the Ship Sea that
backed us yesterday a great friend of Capt Forbes and boasting that he never
required a pilot made a mistake this morning in going out from the Heads
completely wrecking His fine Vefsel and loosing all Hands on Board as well as
The Earl Chan-nonds is also a total wreck that
left Liverpool a few Hours before us. No lives lost. The Flask, the Monument
about 100 Lost. The Hellespont Steamer likewise a complete wreck. No lives lost
with about a dozen other The first 2 weeks of Landing beating the Earl
Charmonds 9 weeks the Dutch Vessel by a month, the New York Eagle by 2 months
and we Had news of the Marco Polos arriving in Liverpool the same day as the
Antelope signald at Melbourne.
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