Article image
Article image
Article image
Article image
Article image
This article displays in one automatically-generated column. View the full page to see article in its original form.

A CHAPTER FROM THE LIFE OF THE LATE EARL OF SEAFIELD.

The following is from an artlolo oommunioated to the ■' jSoocsman" auent the late Earl of SeafiaM :— •

s Upwards of twen'y yenra ae;o, when he was a strong-bouod lad of 18, he had iv the West Indies n remarkable misadventure. He was th^n a mdabipm«n on board the Ohallf>ug< r, nnder Captain Gordon. Permitted to po on shore at J -malca, he hti 1 another found the tir of the B!ae M tantains so p!eora t and exhilarating that they unpardonab'y exoeedtd their leav, and fouud on return to the ship their names struck off the bonks, and their effects sold to the urew. Grant was sent home m the Buzz rd, whlob oti Its way toaohed at Barbadocs, and here, being a free passenger, ho left the protection of friends, and, with only a few shillings m j hla pooket, and totally^, laexperienoed lc any means of pr< vid'tn'g the means of livelihood for the dap, he plunged into the dark chances of an over-peopled land, too advanced In olvlllea ion to take notice of the needs of a s ranger. Finding no rest In busy Barbadoej, he sailed westward In a drogher to one of those lovely Grenadines whlob, ps emeralds, rising out of the soft blue Oarr'bean Sea, more than rival the far-famed isles of Greece. Here, at OarUcou, the Scottish medical maD, Dr Lang, kindly gave him quarters ; but here b?gan his troubles, whloh caused no small stir and talk m the colony, and form a moat Interesting illustration of the great wren? that ttuy ccme oat of too ready a trust In nntcßted olroamstantial evidence. While Grtnt was being hospitably entertained by the f<*w families m Oarlaoou, Commander Franklin, of the Constance*, sent word to the authorities In Grenada that his body servant had run off with money and dressing case, and was believed to have gone to that ontlpiog island and dependency. As the Stipendiary Magistrate and head of the police, Mr Home, was reading the missive, a constable happened to come In from Oarlaoon, who was asked whether any stranger or white sailor was there at that time. The answer was that there wss one giving himself out as a naval officer. Things fitting so neatly, Home at once j imped to the conclusion that this muat be Oammander Franklin's ronaway servant, and nothing oould rid the worthy and kind-hearted man of this erros until events covered him with oonfuslon. At onoe he issued an order to bring him to St George's, the oblef town and seat of Governmeot, His host, Dr Lang, impressed that he was no impostor, resisted the execution of the warrant, and was subsequently reprimanded by the Governor for bo doing, while his neighbour, • major of Volunteers, was unnerved and horrified by the thought that he had entertained at loooheon such a waif of the sea as Commander Frankliu's runaway servant Barely the ghost of the grieved M» jor Milne will now oe do ably appeased on finding that he had at yams and whale s>eaks not merely the eldest son of Honorable James Grant of Grant, but an embtyo Earl of Semfisld and BcltUb Peer,

After gome Incidents by the way wbicb did not disabuse the constable or the idea of his prisoner's guilt, FraDois Grant was broagbt to town, and was next fouud m the guard-room of Fort George, then aaed •■ ft polloo station, deftly brushing bis boots on his feet, and olothed la a wollworn brown shooting salt. To a sympathising fellow-countryman he protested that he was a vkgim of a mlitike, and In orroboration showed photographs of his father and step-mother and othet members of his family ; bat as the theory was that the runsway as reported was very cunning and plausible, It was considered possible that he might have beoome poES-seed of these likenesses lv the capacity of servant, so that the more poor Grant said m vindication of b'mself the more were thoee most favorable to him ooo&trained simply to hold their judgment In suspense. Brought before the Magistrate and some members of Ooanoil who happened to be present, Grant, In a self posaessed and dignified w»y, asked him to read the deeoription which Commander Franklin Rave of his servant, and compare It with the person and features of himself, the prisoner at the bar, " Look at my eyev," said Grant, and sea if there be any resemblance." But so possessed was the Magistrate by his. first Illusion, and so pleased was he at being able to serve the Commander, that he abruptly terminated the proceedings "It's no use going Into those things my man," said he; "I can ' bring a washerwoman who can prove that you brought Commander Franklin's duty I clothes to her when his ship was here six weeks ago." Forthwith Mr Grant was taken to ihe common prison at the foot of Fort George to wait the arrival of tho first ship of war There he lay within 150 yards cf the Oirenage which Mr Froude has lately described m all its plotnreique beauty and tropical InflaoDoes as giving him a sensation of Paradise. Certainly Mr Grant's experiences were of another kind. Ttfe sweetest odour that reaohed him was that of chloride of lime strewed In the oonrts of the prison and Intensified In its'pangenoy by (he torrid heat. For a ormp'anlou through the day he bad a coolie waiting his trial for mutder and a fl'pper-fio limbed negro, a notorious {ftlef, who could not go oat with the penal .gang. After three weeks the Admiralty surveying ship Gannet s'lpped into the harbor to coal. Oiptain Ohlmme, well-known of th#Glasj?ow Gaiter Club, being communicated with, sent a sublieutenant and - quartermaster ashore to bring the prisoner on beard, bnt wh:>t was the surprise of the tub lieutenant (SnillvaD) aod bis henchman when they found In him n friend wi f h whom tbey both had formerly servtd. How delighted were they both to be the mea.ni of bis liberation 1 His first impulse on, gaining freedom was to go and express thanks to the only one who bad sympathised with him In his troubles, ana next to inveit bis lost half-crown Ip a horse whip for the magistrate and all bis other police tormentora ; but, on befog persuaded by the Sort'ißb minister (now of St. Andrew's Ohurob. Alloa) that all these functionaries were heartily grieved by what bad happened, and would be almost ready to andergo a horsewhipping If Vhls would be any satisfaction 'for an outrage on a solon of the noblest British arlstooraoy, he generously forgave them, and for three months, daring which he lived m the Scottish manee, paw them with equanimity eyery day. The period of his residence here became. In a way the turnIng point m his life.

With a pertain bs^e remoVed from his mind, and big regulative • pcluolpleo strengthened, he set out from Grenada resolved to make op for the past, nod next tfmo he is engaged m the ordinary battle of life wjtih, bpjo!(j ooqtectrnßnt m the ooqnlry of bi« adoption—then a candidate for * leat In the Oulonlal Parliament, and last of all, af^r the groatwt vioießltadeß of fortune, la which all the Birtngth of the mao came to the front, he readies the moat satisfying height of mortal embltton as a great hereditary head and Brlt'eh Baroa, and dies amidst the oulvcra*! t egrets of a people aocu«tomed to eiteem sll pig icoordlpg to tbf(? raeiltf,

This article text was automatically generated and may include errors. View the full page to see article in its original form.
Permanent link to this item

http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AG18890402.2.26

Bibliographic details

A CHAPTER FROM THE LIFE OF THE LATE EARL OF SEAFIELD., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2100, 2 April 1889

Word Count
1,255

A CHAPTER FROM THE LIFE OF THE LATE EARL OF SEAFIELD. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2100, 2 April 1889

  1. New formats

    Papers Past now contains more than just newspapers. Use these links to navigate to other kinds of materials.

  2. Hierarchy

    These links will always show you how deep you are in the collection. Click them to get a broader view of the items you're currently viewing.

  3. Search

    Enter names, places, or other keywords that you're curious about here. We'll look for them in the fulltext of millions of articles.

  4. Search

    Browsed to an interesting page? Click here to search within the item you're currently viewing, or start a new search.

  5. Search facets

    Use these buttons to limit your searches to particular dates, titles, and more.

  6. View selection

    Switch between images of the original document and text transcriptions and outlines you can cut and paste.

  7. Tools

    Print, save, zoom in and more.

  8. Explore

    If you'd rather just browse through documents, click here to find titles and issues from particular dates and geographic regions.

  9. Need more help?

    The "Help" link will show you different tips for each page on the site, so click here often as you explore the site.

Working