White Wings Vol II. Founding Of The Provinces And Old-Time Shipping. Passenger Ships From 1840 To 1885
"Thursday, August 4.—The second mate went down into the hold and missed some articles. After making inquiries he found out that two young men had been guilty of taking some sugar, a bottle of gin, some cases of salmon, etc., for which the captain gave them the limited punishment of not getting any sugar, tea, or coffee for a month… I think the cases of fever are all over, and that all the patients are recovering. We had dancing to-night, and I think we will go on our way rejoicing."
"Friday, August 5.—The captain took me in a corner and told me that Mr. D. was jealous of me forming an attachment with his wife, and that in future I had better be on my guard… Such an idea of forming an attachment with Mr. D.'s wife, or any other man's, never for a moment entered my head… Mr. D.'s mind must be in a very strange state. He cannot rest five minutes anywhere. He says the doctor is going after his wife for the money be has with him, which he says is eight hundred sovereigns, and that I am going after her for the property, which he says is considerable, and that we have arranged with the doctor to poison him. I am certain that such ideas never entered the doctor's head or mine. What this may end in I know not, but for the present it has caused a great deal of talk throughout the ship."
"Monday, August 8.—Another case of pilfering has been observed, but the transgressors have not been found. A barrel of tobacco had been down about the hold, and was found to be minus 30 or 40lb of tobacco."
"Wednesday, August 10.—Mr. D. went back to his cabin with his wife. He has her crying every night. When she will be crying he is generally whistling or singing some Irish song. So strong is the suspicion that any of us go in that when he comes out he locks her in and has the door that enters into the bathroom sealed with wax. It is my opinion that he will murder her."
The ship was now getting down into the colder regions, with occasional rough weather. "Wednesday, August 17: I went down into the 'tween decks to-day, and it is a laughable scene to see some of the people down on their knees praying, and not two yards away others singing and dancing Jim Crow. Pots and pans tumble over their heads and roll from side to side with the rolling of the ship, and those who do not get boiling tea over their legs consider themselves fortunate. I got the benefit of some poor fellow's tea about my legs."
"Thursday, August 18.—We mustered our young female friends very early to-night, got Snowball to work, and spent an evening of capital dancing, everyone making themselves merrier than another for the want of exercise. I danced for an hour and a-half, and feel so tired I could scarcely lift one leg over the other."page break page 41
Contrary to the usual experience down in those latitudes, the ship struck several days of calm, and the diary speaks of lowering a boat and going shooting Cape pigeons and other sea birds. They also caught several by trailing baited lines over the stern. When on this strange boating excursion in the Southern Ocean the diarist writes of the appearance of the ship, "the Jane Gifford had a beautiful appearance. She had all the sails she could carry. The rigging was crowded with passengers, and the poop was crowded, all enjoying the bird-shooting as well as I did myself."
"Friday, August 19.—An accident happened to one of our sailors to-day. They were hoisting a crosstree when the rope broke and the beam fell on the poor fellow's leg, jamming it between a pike about an inch thick and four inches long, which went through the calf of his leg, and was within an ace of breaking his leg."