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White Wings Vol I. Fifty Years Of Sail In The New Zealand Trade, 1850 TO 1900

The Rescue

The Rescue.

"The vessel was quivering," says Mr. Leitch, "and everyone feared the final plunge would be made into the many fathoms of water between the peaks of rock all along the dangerous coast of North Ireland. One of the officers cried out, 'Well, boys, what is to be done, are you going to take in sail?' The men all went off with a will to the orders given, and immediately they had completed the work the main mast went crash, snapping off at the deck, tearing the bulwarks away, the lot falling into the sea. This appeared to steady the ship, as the yards rested on the reef. We passed a long weary night, and being midwinter there was no daylight till 8 a.m. All were thankful to see land, and the coastguard boats approaching the ship. The women and children were the first taken off, and the sea moderating, as many of the ship's boats as were available, landed the crew.

"The other passengers were then all safely landed and all were thankful for their almost miraculous deliverance from a watery grave. We landed at a small fishing village named Cloughey, County Down. Over 300 persons were billeted on the generous hospitality of the residents. The Presbyterian Church and Manse was thrown open and all the cottagers played their part in supplying food and shelter. Meanwhile arrangements were made to take us overland to Belfast. For this purpose all the jaunting cars for miles around were requisitioned, and the shipwrecked people, over 300, in their various garbs, presented a curious sight driving along the country roads of Ireland. Arriving at Newtownards we were taken by train to Belfast, thence by steamer to Glasgow, arriving there just one week from the day we went on board. The emigrants were lodged there until another ship was ready—the Caroline, a vessel of 1,515 tons, Captain Hardy."

the Caroline sailed from Greenock on February 19, and finally left Scilly on the 27th. She made a good run to the equator, and landed her passengers safely at Port Chalmers on May 23 after an uneventful passage. After the wreck a few of the passengers, including Mr. Leitch, transferred to other ships, Mr. Leitch coming out in the Union Company's steamer Waihora on her first voyage. The following year, 1884, he came to Auckland and several other passengers by the Caroline are also now residing in that city.

the Wild Deer on all occasions sailed from Glasgow. Below are the dates of her sailings and of her arrivals at Port Chalmers.

To Port Chalmers.
Sailed. Arrived. Captain. Days.
Mar. 23 June 21, '71 Cameron 89
Feb. 9 May 9, '72 Whitson 88
*Jan. 22 May 1, '73 Whitson 99
Dec. 10, '73 Mar. 5, '74 Cowan 84
Oct. 31, '74 Jan. 20, '75 Malcolm 81
Nov. 4, '75 Feb. 10, '76 Malcolm 98
Dec. 29, '76 Mar. 29, '77 Fullerton 90
Dec. 31, '78 Apr. 2, '79 Kilgour 92
Land to land 88
July 15 Oct. 15, '80 Kerr 92
Land to land 85
June 8 Sep. 18, '81 Kerr 100
Land to land 89
April 20 July 7, '82 Kerr 77