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THE WRECK OF THE GARSTON.

SUFFERINGS OF THE GREW.

(PBB PRESS ASSOCIATION,)

Auckland, September 17 The deaoriptloQ of the sufferings of the nine castaways from the wreck oE tho ship Oarston who have arrived m Auckland, haa been supplied to the '• Herald " by Mr Julian Thomas. He states : — After rowing for thirty-tir hours Captain Pye determined to make southwards, m the hope of striking the Hervey or Cook Islands, or falling m with aome vessels bound to San Francisco. As a matter of fact they aroused the track of the mall stetmers to Sydney, and bo the little boat commenoed to Bail southward, an oar for a mast, a bed-quilt or counterpane (pqt m the gig by the steward) for a sail, a white shirt on a split stretcher for a topsail. Watches were set, relieved every two hours— one man at the look out forward, one man at the helm. Bruoe and Annesley, second and third mates, took their turn with the men. Captain Pye navigated the boat and issued rations. A tin of meat was to last three days, about lloz * day amongst nine men, or l£oz per man. The blsouit, which soon got wet and mouldy, was served out m sma'l portions by Brnoe twice a day. Half a gill of water waa given to eaoh man; All shared alike. The captaia shared his tobacoo with the rest. Very uncomplainingly did the men endure their lot. For many days they stood their alternate two hours of duty, and four hours of sleep or of rest, Always wet through by the seas, which often swamped tbe boat, always ahungered, always athiret— they bore this lot like men. They had not space to lie down ; they were cramped m every movement. The tropioal sun beat on them daring the d<»y ; at night their bonea were often raokod by cold, yet the warmth of these southern seas eayed them. In higher latitudes, under similar conditions, they must have perished. 80 the ninth day came. Nearly half the provisions were gone. They had ruD, Captuin Pyke reckoned, over 500 miles, but could not make a southerly oourse. Eaoh day they were going westward. Now tboy oould make no headway, so he changed his oourse to the west, hoping to strike Tonga os Samoa, On the fourteenth day tho mouldy blaoultwas all gone Thore waa nothing but tbe meat left; On tho seoond day that a tin was opened the meat would be rotten, but It was eaten with avidity The ratn laqklly enabled thorn to fill their beaker, and the small allowance of water was never lacking. The men did not suffer so muoh from thirst aa from hunger, although some drank small quantities of salt water without evil effect. They got woaker and weaker, and tbe devil of despair entered Into them. Who oan wonder at It ? Day after day no sail, no land, no .hopes, nothing to the men but the aeabirda on their traok, no obange, no variation, a: mouthful of rotten meat to-day, the same to-morrow. All got up and lay down hungry. They chewed tbe leather from their oip llntugs, tho roods and pith from tbe oapttin's sun helmet. They tried to eat their sea boots, but these were far too tough. Waking and sleeping, they thought of but one thing—food. Twenty days from the wreck the men became desperate. Only two tlaa of beef were left. .»« Give us it all and let us have a. meal," they said. " No," said the Captain " What if we come and take it," «ald one; "there are but two of you .'! Annesley lay too weak to move at ihe bottom of the boat, and tne captain would only have the seoond mate, Bruee, to help him, but Gaptain Pye looks a strong powerful man,. " I will throw it overboard first.," said he. "You fools, our only chance lain making 1 his food last as long as possible. If you eat this today what will you do to-morrow?" "Then," said one of the foreigners letting out the devil that was ia him and others, "there are plenty of two-legged animals m the boat." All pity was choked within them by their sufferings. Lota must be drown, aud one ufter the other must become a sacrifice to support the lives of the rest. We all laugh when Mr W. S. Gilbert's ballad of "TheNanoy I$»lg" Is sung, little reckoning th*t auoh experlonces have been real ones on the ocean, Captain Pye now qava h.e would bavo overturned the bo,at aod sent all hands to "Davy tones' looker " before he would agree to such a thing. "I had still my wits about me, and we should all have died together ;" but he would not oast lots— the skipper might bo a sacrifice. On the twenty seoond day there waa only a pound and a half of meat loft, but when near sundown Wallls Island was sighted, the sallmaker calling out "Land. 1 Another hour and they would have changed- their oourao and mfswd this, passing it In tho night, as they did the Samoaa Isles. They stood off for a time to avoid the reef, but guided by tbe fu.ll light of the moon the castaways landed on Wallls Island at 4 a.m. on the morning of August 9th, th.c twenty-third day after the wreob; of the Garston, after sailing over 160$ miles m an open boat.

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Permanent link to this item

http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/AG18890918.2.13

Bibliographic details

THE WRECK OF THE GARSTON., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2229, 18 September 1889

Word Count
905

THE WRECK OF THE GARSTON. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2229, 18 September 1889

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