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BOAT ACCIDENT-IN WELLINGTON HARBOR.

TWO MEN DROWNED.

MIRACULOUS ESCAPE OF A WOMAN.

WELLINGTON, October 23. A sad boating accident happened in the, harbor last night, in whioh two men named Gum and James Stewart lost their lives. It appears that the men named engaged an open boat, and, accompanied by a young woman named Spackman, went for a sail. All went well uctil about 7.30 p.m., when they were returning from Petone. A sudden squall then capsized the boat, which was a fourteen-footer, with a centreboard. The boat at this time was off Rocky Point, near Ngahauranga, and cries of distress were distinctly heard at Ngahauranga and Kaiwarra, and several boats went off. A constable was also despatched from town, but no trace could be found. Later in the evening the Petone Navals, when leaving Wellington for Petone after being inspected by Major-general Edwards, heard of the accident, and on arriving home decided to launch their cutter and make a search of the harbor. They left their shed at a quarter past eleven, and searched the harbor until about 12.30 a.m., when they were rewarded by finding the boat bottom up with Miss Spackman clinging to the keel. She was at once placed on beard the cutter, and all haste made for Ngahauranga, where the young lady was taken to the hotel, and, although very exhausted, soon recovered. I She states that the boat capsized about I 7.30, and all three occupants managed to get on to the bottom of it; but the men soon lost their hold and disappeared. Gum is believed to be ex-boatswain of the steamer lonic, and Stewart is a painter. The Petone Navals deseive every credit for their life saving. The errant boat was recovered at Point Halawell this morning. In the course of an interview this morning Miss Sarah Spackman (aged nineteen), the survivor of last night's boat accident, states that they left Petone before seven o'clock, and at about 7.40 the boat capsized, j owing, she believes, to it jibing in a squall. All three occupants got safely on the boat, she helping Stewart, who a rather delicate man. They cried lustily for help, but saw none of the boats sent out to rescue them. After half ah hour Stewart's strength gave out, and he fell back into the water, and was never seen again. Gunn, who was a strong, powerful young man, showed signs of exhaustion after being an hour on the boat, and fell acroßS the bottom, with his head almost touching the water. Miss Spackman pulled him up and said : "Be a man; hang oh like me." He, however, was too far gone, and a few minutes later fell off, and Miss Spackman saw him floating alongside the overturned craft for some time, but could do nothing to help him. For three hours after this Miss Spackman, who was straddle across the boat, was by herself, and apparently with little hope of being rescued, and was fast drifting towards the Heads. At last the Petone Naval cutter came near, and she called "Shall I throw you the painter." The men called to her to cling to the boat and they would come alongside, which they did, and took her ashore. Miss Spackman feels very little effects from her exposure. John Gum was a single man, about twenty-four years of age, and James Stewart was a widower with three children and with friends at Cambridge (Auckland). .., „

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/ESD18891023.2.18

Bibliographic details

BOAT ACCIDENT-IN WELLINGTON HARBOR., Issue 8045, 23 October 1889

Word Count
575

BOAT ACCIDENT-IN WELLINGTON HARBOR. Issue 8045, 23 October 1889

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