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Historical Records of New Zealand

Rev. S. Marsden to Rev. J. Pratt

page 598

Rev. S. Marsden to Rev. J. Pratt.

Bay of Islands, 20th Sept., 1823.

Revd. and dear Sir,—

As it is probable that a letter may reach you from New Zealand before I can write to you from New South Wales I have judged it prudent to drop you a few lines. I sailed from Port Jackson on the 23rd of July in the Brampton, with the Revd. Mr. Williams and family, and we arrived in the Bay of Islands on Sunday, Aug. 3rd.…Mr. Kendall consented to return with me to Port Jackson. I took a passage for him and his family in the Brampton, and when the ship was ready they all embarked. On Sunday the 7th of Sepr. we attempted to get out of the harbour. There was a strong gale from the east. In working out the ship missed stays, and was driven amongst the rocks, where she was wrecked. No lives were lost, tho’ our situation was very awful. This was a very distressing calamity to all. The bottom of the vessel was soon beat out, so that we had no hopes of ever returning in the Brampton. There was no other vessel in the harbour, nor none expected for some time. In a few days we were all landed again with our baggage, as the vessel did not go to pieces. We met with no loss excepting the ship. The natives behaved exceedingly well, and did not take from us the smallest article. Upon the whole it was a merciful shipwreck. I shall send you the particulars from N. S. Wales. I had also Mr. Cowell and family on board. The whole number under my charge were 16 Europeans and 12 natives. We have had a very anxious time.…

I am, &c.,

Saml. Marsden

Rev. J. Pratt, &c., &c.