roger dot kiwi dot nz

November 1873

Day 10 – Saturday November 1st

Passed a rough night. A great many sick and giddy. About 9am had a bit of a squall. A rough unpleasant day. Shipped a little sea at times. Sarah Ann bad with a bilious attack – very sick and went to bed in the afternoon. Going at the rate of ten knots an hour.

Day 11 – Sunday November 2nd

Passed a rough night. Many sick and giddy. Sea rather rough. Got wet through two or three times. Keep shipping seas. A very unpleasant day. About 2:30pm came on to rain. Sarah Ann better. A meat pie for dinnier, Mrs Hughes put into a swing berth very ill. Passengers falling and flying about in all directions. About the worst Sunday I ever spent in my life. People repenting over coming to sea. Ship rolling very much. Sighted no vessel.

Day 12 – Monday November 3rd

The sea not quite so rough. Scarcely any wind and that not very favourable. All the women except Mrs. Hughes up on deck. The sun shining. Cleaning up a little below. Store keeper selling lemonade at 6^ per bottle. Sold a great quantity. At 4pm, two ships in sight to windward. Passengers all seem better. Ship not rolling near so much. A turtle near the ship to windward was seen. Spend a very comfortable day after two rather rough ones. Singing, dancing and music. A fine starlight night.

Day 13 – Tuesday 4th November

Had a good run in the night. Wind in our favour. Sun shining bright. All the passengers better – Mrs. Hughes also. Everyone busy, this being the day for having the boxes up out of the hold. Everyone in good spirit having hte chance of getting some of the good cheer in store in the boxes.

At 3pm, three ships in sight to windward, one very near. More like a fair than being on board ship at sea. Fiddling and dancing going on. A fine night with a little more wind.

Day 14 – Wednesday 5th November

A fine hot mornning, not much wind. About 9am a large black looking bird about a quarter mile astern. Two ?barques? in sight – one an American looking, very near our own. About 11am, a little boy named Sutton fell down the hatchway and cut his chin open two inched. The doctor sewed the same up. Boy doing well. Mrs. Hughes getting better. Came on deck this morning for the first time. A ship in sight, homeward bound, making three altogether in sight. Washing day among the women. Music and dancing. A fine night. All going well.

Day 15 – Tuesday November 6th

A fine morning, wind in our favour. The same American vesel in sight, also a steamship and another vessel in sight. Got up at 3 o’clock. Had to keep watch until 6 o’clock. A fight nearly came off between the baker and one of the passengers – the latter calling the former a thief and liar – in the first place in the morning. In the afternoon, they began again about religion but made it up afterwards. Also a little of disturbance between some of the single men and the doctor and in the morning the Captain talked a bit to them with regards to the regulations of hte ship.

Dancing all the evening, afterwards, hanging up by the heels with a rope to each foot, and walking on the hands and chalk-marking the deck. Fine sport was this. Not much wind but a fine starlight night.

Day 16 – Friday November 7th

The American much further astern. A fine morning, not much wind. The little boy Sutton in the arms of his brother – the latter slipping down the steps again, which frightened him very much. This day had lime juice served out to us. Music in the evening.

Day 17 – Saturday November 8th

Passed a quiet night. Not much wind this morning. One vessel in sight, not very near. Beef, mustard and pickles for dinner.

John Barlow slipped down the steps with three pints of hot tea, spilling the same all over him. Received a few cakes from the baker. The ship’s steward killed one of the sheep, but none I think will come to our share. Lost a rice pudding and after a little loud talk it found it’s way back into the oven. Had a snarl with the ship’s cook on account of his incivility. Music, singing and dancing.

Day 18 – Sunday November 9th

A fine morning with a fair wind. A drove of porpoises in sight to leeward, also a full-rigged ship. Another woman fell down the steps. All the passengers mustered on the quarter deck at 10am before divine service, which was held by the doctor – two flags being wrapped round the capson for a desk. First chapter read was David in the lion’s den – no sermon was preached – most of the people coming out in their best clothes. This Sunday was a little better than the last. Some slipped back and did not attend the service. A fine day.

Day 19 – November 10th

A fine morning. Had breakfast on deck. A whale was seen to leeward, also one ship to windward. The Captain had words with the chief officer at 1am for having all hands furling sails with scarcely any wind blowing – the same being in his cups seven or eight times. After tea helped Lander Walter and O’Keef to put the storeroom to rights. In the morning and afternoon the Captain searched the single men for spirits. Plenty of noise in the evening. Had Wm. to tea.

Day 20 – Tuesday November 11th

A fine starlight morning. Got up at 3 o’clock to keep watch until 6am. Much sooner have been in bed. The baker is busy at 4:30am mixing the sponge for baking. Had some hot coffee with William in the forecastle. Also had a turn at the pump. Mrs. O’Keefe gave up being nurse to the sick. 12 noon, a vessel in sight astern. Washing day among the women. A little blow between O’Keefe adn little Joe, the doctor parting them – Joe . . . a loaf of bread. Joe reports the case to the Captain. O’Keefe is sent for to have the law laid down to him. also, if he strikes another passenger he will be put in irons. ?Kowa? seem to be going on all over the ship. I think another turn at sea-sickness would put a stop to all the quarrels for a time. Mrs. O’Keefe making a fuss about short weight in her bread. A day or two single girls had some words. Also a snarl between a tailor and a waiter about who knew most. In the evening a concert was held on the quarter deck – a pretty good attendance. Signals forward not lit, nor have they been for many nights. A good breeze having sprung up bids well for a fine run tonight.

Day 21 – Wednesday November 12th

A fine morning with a fair wind. Two vessels in sight. Some women washing again today. Very bad in my inside owing to drinking too freely of lime juice. In the afternoon several were practising hymn singing on the quarter deck. In the evening the signal lamps were lit. The wind still in our favour. Not many kicking up rows today. O’Keef moved his quarters to the single men’s place by the doctor’s permission. Robert bad with the tooth-ache. Jimmy Lind a little better. A very little music and less dancing. A very quiet evening.

Day 22 – Thursday November 13th

Ship rolled about a good deal in the night. A fine morning. Not very well this morning. This morning assisted Mr Lander and Walker in the storeroom for Mr. Wicks. Had a meat pie for dinner. In the afternoon to windward a Portuguese island was seen a few miles off. One passenger inclined to land if he had the chance. In the morning a full rigged ship was seen astern. Not quite so hot this evening. A flying fish was caught, and given to Mrs. Walker for her breakfast. A little music but no dancing. 9:30pm, still off the coast. Fancy I could see the lights on shore.

Day 23 – Friday November 14th

Fine morning, not much wind. Some islands in sight on the port side. One vessel in sight early this morning. While dressing this morning had the misfortune to break the glass of my watch, which was a very bad job, not having any watch maker on board. Cut Jimmy Lind’s hair, also little Harry’s. All very quiet today. The sailors all very busy at work about the rigging. Very warm, no wind. Very little music and dancing this evening.

Day 24 – Saturday November 15th

Fine morning, no wind. Very hot indeed. Two mountains in sight – one they say is seven hundred feet high. Slept near the storeroom door part of the night. Robert slept in a hammock on deck all night, which was the best place considering how warm it is. One of the single women in a fit for nearly an hour. One vessel in sight on starboard side. The sea like a sheet of glass. No concert. Old Mrs. Barlow very ill. The evening passed off rather quiet, with a little music and dancing. Some sharks were seen.

Day 25 – Sunday November 16th

A large ship in sight. A fine morning, the wind in our favour. Not quite so hot. Old Mrs. Barlow still very ill. Prayers at divine service offered up in her behalf. Two large brown birds were seen flying round the ship, some saying they were seagulls. An island in sight this morning. Crew, all dressed in their best clothes, attended service which was held in the evening for the first time. The wind still in our favour. We passed a quiet day. Fanny and Emma Jane had tea with us on the deck. Old Mrs. Barlow not expected to live.

Day 26 – Monday November 17th

The wind during the night in our favour, also this morning. We are making good way before breakfast. Saw a fish flying about like a bird. The children going to school on the ??? deck. Old Mrs. Barlow much better this morning. Four or five more flying fish about like birds. The old lady I named as “Barlow” is a mistake. Her name is “Howaith”. We had a concert in the evening and soon afterwards the poor old lady was taken for death and died at 10:15pm. Most of the passengers were up all night. This is a sad event.

Day 27 – Tuesday November 18th

Rose at 6am. A fine morning. The wind in our favour. At 7:15am poor Mrs. Howaith was buried in the sea. A sad sight to see her friends so cut up. “The Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away. Blessed be the name of the Lord”. At 1 o’clock had a heavy fall of rain. One vessel in sight to windward on the port side. At 4pm had another fall of rain. Several spoke to the doctor respecting the rations. Fat pork yesterday and nothing to eat with it. This is too bad.

Day 28 – Wednesday November 19th

Got up at 6am. Was woken at 3:15 by the smash of bottles. A little disturbance during the early morning. Rained hard all day until 5:30pm. Had to keep below nearly all day on account of the rain. The place is very wet and uncomfortable below. The doctor has had a great deal of trouble with Mary Saunders. In the morning saw a flock of boobies, otherwise seabirds. In the evening no wind – almost a calm. Had a drop of brandy from the doctor for mopping up the wet. All very quiet this evening.

Day 29 – Thursday November 20th

This has been a very hot and a very wet day. The hatches down and the place below like a pig stye owing to the wet dripping down. A few fish were seen and the Captain caught a pike.

Day 30 – Friday November 21st

Passed a very hot and restless night – no sleep. More rain again today. Nothing occurred afresh. The violin at work a little in the evening.

Day 31 – Saturday November 22nd

Slept a little better last night. Rather a squally night. AT 3:15am, in a squall, had narrow escape of being run down by anothe ship without any lights – so near that a biscuit could be thrown on board. Thanks be to God for preserving us. Busy part of the day carpentering, making lids for the barrels. Another row about tea time – O’Keef refusing to do his share of the work. Put in irons for 48 hours. Another man was nearly served the same – only the word “bread and water” made him alter to go to his work. Music this evening. Wet and dark.

Day 32 – Sunday November 23rd

Passed a rather dark and squally night. Turned out a bright morning, a good breeze of wind. Going a little out of our track. Held divine service on the quarter deck. After service had a little cake between us. Had meat pie for dinner. Spent the afternoon on deck with Robert and Wm. During the afternoon Robert had a tooth drawn. Not so hot, but the breeze we have got is quite a treat. Divine service was held in the evening. Still going out of our track.

Day 33 – Monday November 24th

Passed a very uncomfortable night – nearly stifled with the heat in our large bedroom. Yound Harry rather troublesome – had to take him in our bed to make it all better. A few birds were seen, also a fish. Not very well today, or Sarah Ann either. Pork, pea soup and rice for dinner. No vessel in sight. O’Keef out of custody at 5pm. Came back to live with the married people again. A little music and dancing this evening. Killed one of the sheep.

Day 34 – Tuesday November 25th

A fine morning. Slept on the locker all night. Not quite so hot. Sarah Ann washing this morning. I made the pudding for dinner then went into the store for Mr. Wicks. Had dinner, then went into the store again for a short time. In the evening Mrs. Hill danced a Scotch dance. A fine night. Mr. Sutton had a little ointment on his head – smelt well. We crossed the line at 9:50am. Not so hot as it has been.

Day 35 – Wednesday November 26th

Did not go to bed all night, neither the night before – too hot to do so. Made Sarah Ann a little tea over the lamp at 6am. Had breakfast on deck at 8:30am. A fine morning with a good breeze. After dinner, a fight between Joe Humphrey and the stowaway. A barque in sight on the weather brow, homeward bound. Another bit of a fight between O’Keef and the ship’s cook. This day Wm. Harris gave up being a quarter master. A few birds were seen this afternoon. A concert was held this evening.

Day 36 – Thursday November 27th

Passed another almost sleepless night, the berth being very much like an oven. After the bread had been drawn at 7:30am, a full rigged ship in sight on the weather bow. At 9:30 the Captain signalled to her. The stranger ran up five flags. Our brave Captain ran the ensign up twice, then left it up for five minutes only. A few fishes were seen, also a sea bird or two. A good breeze of wind on our port beam. Another vessel in sight on the lee side, also a few more birds to be seen. After tea, Mrs. O’Keef nearly washed away out of the cabin. A fine night. Not much amusement, only a little singing.

Day 37 – Friday 28th November

Slept on the locker all night. Had a little more sleep. A little shower first think in the morning. Washing day among the women. Nothing in sight this morning, only water. Pork and pea soup for dinner. This day, at 1pm, a vessel in sight on the port side. Took 20 drops of Mrs. Harris’s medicine. At 4:30pm a brig and a schooner on our starboard side, abreast of each other, homeward bound. About 7pm, a brig passed very close on our port side – gave them a cheer. A fine night – good wind – going about 8 knots. No concert or singing this evening. Took four pills and went ot bed.

Day 38 – Saturday 29th November

A fine morning, no vessel in sight. After breakfast, Joe’s wife and Mrs. Hughes had some words. Mrs. Walker lost her hat, also some of the single girls, making five lost altogether. The day passed very quiet. No concert held this evening. The doctor, chief officer and carpenter nailing up the hospital door and the store-room partition. Little Walter rather poorly. Went to bed about 10pm. The wind having a spell.

Day 39 – Sunday November 30th

About midnight a still breeze sprung up. Soon afterwards one of the sails was blown adrift. Going about 10 knots an hour. No service was held this morning. Shipped several seas. One during ____ came across the hatchway like a river. Another cap lost this morning, belonging to Jack, the deck-boy. A good breeze all day. No service held in the evening. Rather too rough. Joe and the doctor had some words in the morning.