White Wings Vol II. Founding Of The Provinces And Old-Time Shipping. Passenger Ships From 1840 To 1885
The African completed three voyages to Auckland, under the command of Captain Joseph Gibson. She was a full-rigged ship of 774 tons, sent out by the Shaw, Savill Co. On her first voyage she sailed from London on the 7th, and from Plymouth on the 11th October, 1859. She experienced contrary winds for several days, and did not pass Lisbon until ten days out. Light northerlies then followed, and the equator was crossed on the 20th November. The meridian of the Cape was fetched on the 17th December. On the 26th January the ship encountered a very severe gale with torrents of rain, and was under close reefed topsails for the first time since leaving Plymouth. A favourable run was then made to Tasmania, which was passed on the 19th January. Seven days later, when approaching the Three Kings, a circular storm was encountered, but the ship suffered no damage. The North Cape was rounded on the 27th January, and Auckland was reached two days later—the 30th January, 1860.
The African on this occasion brought 286 passengers, all being landed in good health. Captain Gibson reported three births and two deaths during the voyage.
The following year, 1861, the African sailed from Portsmouth on February 8th, and reached Auckland on June 8th. She brought 40 passengers and various military detachments, 17 soldiers' wives, and 24 children. During the voyage there were three deaths and three births.
The African once more under the command of Captain Gibson, completed a third voyage to Auckland in 1862. She sailed from the Downs on the 12th May, and arrived at her destination on the 27th August, after a remarkably pleasant passage of 107 days. The equator was crossed on the 13th June, and the Cape rounded on the 13th July. She ran down her easting between the parallels of 39 and 41 deg. S., with fine, steady westerly Winds, passing Tasmania on the 17th August, and sighting the Three Kings eight days later. She brought out 105 passengers.