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it to make it fast alongside, and to tell the people to jump overboard and cling to it; then, finding the fames approaching so rapidly that I could neither get forward nor aft, I was obliged to heave myself overboard, and cling to the spar for a short time, but finding that there were too many already clinging to it, I swam to a board which fortunately floated near us.* At this moment “the scene which was presented was of the most appalling and harrowing description, the flames were bursting with immense fury from the stern and centre of the ressel. So great was the heat in these parts that the passengers, male and female, men, women, and children, crowded to the fore part of the ressel. In their maddened despair, women jumped orerboard with their offspring in their arms, and sank to rise no more. Men followed their wives in frenzy and were lost. Groups of men, women, and ehildren also precipitated themselves into the water, in the rain hope of self-preservation, but the waters closed over many of them for ever. No pen can describe this awful scene. In a few minutes the mizen-mast went overboard, a few minutes more and the main-mast shared the same fate. There yet remained the foremast; . . . . . . the passengers and crew of course crowded still further forward ; to the jib-boom they elung in clusters as thick as they could pack, even ode lying over another; at length the fore-mast went over board, snapping the fastenings of the jib-boom, which, with its load of human beings, dropped into the water."
Still the fire continued—the deal boards, which constituted the fittings of an emigrant ship, fell an easy prey ; and as the volumes of smoke ascended, the flames burst out again and again, and more of the pressengers fell orerboard with a wild and frantie ery which was heard above the howling of the wind or the crackling of the burning timbers.
But now is the “arm of the Lord " stretched out
for deliverance, and his own redeemed ones amongst those on board remember his holy word : “When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee ; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee; when thou walkest through the fire thou shalt not be burned, neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.”
On that morning a beautiful yacht-the Queen of the Ocean--sailed from Beaumaris Bay, the property of a gentleman, whose name is worthy of record-Mr. Littledale, of Liverpool. The owner was on board, together with a party of his friends--and gaily and lightly did she scud o'er the main, dipping in the trough of the sea," and then rising on the crested billows, till rounding the bold and bluff Ormshead, she altered her course and stood right for the Mersey, “ homeward bound."
And now the crew of this little yacht get the first glimpse of the Ocean Monarch, and they look with admiration upon her stately form; but in another moment they see the signal of distress flying at her mast-head, and smoke and flames ascending from her deck. Instantly the Queen of the Ocean bore down upon the burning ship-a boat was lowered, and by means of Mr. Littledale's exertions and those of his friends and crew, the Captain and thirty-one others were saved from a watery grave. Not far distant at the time was a ship of war belonging to a foreign crown, the Affonso, Brazilian steam-frigate, out on a pleasure trip, and having a distinguished company on board, including the two French Princes, de Joinville and d'Aumale.* This frigate also bore away for the scene of the disaster, and sent her boats to assist. And here, all distinctions of rank and nation were lost in the cause of a common humanity, Brazilian
The Commander de Lisboa was the captain of this frigate; there were also on board at the time the Chevalier de Lisboa, Admiral Grenfell the Brazilian Consul-General and family, the Princesses d’Aumale and de Joinville, and Mr. and Mrs. Lynn.
nobles, French princes, together with the English on board, all united their efforts and were the means of rescuing 156 persons more. Now also the mate of the Ocean Monarch returned. In the first burst of the flames he had jumped overboard to save a crowded boat from being swamped, and was carried away by the wind and tide. The following is his statement:
“ After drifting about four miles to leeward a sloop picked us up; we were thirteen in number. I do not recollect the name of the schooner; I put the passengers on board, and having got four oars and four men of the ship's company, I pulled with all energy for the ship. After proceeding about a mile the Prince of Wales steamer came alongside and took us in tow, and steered for the Ocean Monarch. When within about a mile of the ship, we saw a passenger holding on to a life-buoy. I picked him up and put him on board the steamer.”
Amongst those who nobly exerted themselves, one name must not be forgotten. The vessel was now burned nearly to the water's edge, every exertion had been used; but in the confusion and terror which reigned on board, more than one hundred had sunk to rise no more; still seventeen clung to the bows and to the figure-head. Mr Blagdon, the mate, came close and endeavoured to save them. Strange infatuation! All but two refused to leave the ship, preferring the danger of remaining to that of jumping into the boat. But by and by a man is seen buffeting the waves, and swimming to the wreck-he carries a little rope—no sense of danger deters him from his purpose. The flames burst out afresh, and the fifteen remaining passengers gaze with horror on the fire now close behind them, while the gulf of waters is beneath. But this man comes nearer and nearer still, and catching at a piece of broken tackling, he raises himself up, he climbs the wreck, and by means of the little rope he lowers all the fifteen in safety to the boat, himself the last to
leave the sinking ship. This man was Frederick Jerome, a sailor, of the New World Packet-ship; his name will long be remembered by those fifteen.
At a little distance is the Affonso, safely riding at anchor; and on board of her an interesting scene is taking place. 156 individuals, men, women, and children, strew her decks; some have legs broken, the arms of others are injured:--not a few are badly burned ; and all are faint and nearly naked ; but the hand of kindness is busy in relieving their distress. Clothing is freely and liberally given to them, the noble company attend to the sufferers. A little girl has lost her mother; her flaxen tresses are matted with the salt water, and her eyes suffused with tears, and she weeps and looks around in vain for her beloved parent, and then she weeps again. The lady of the Consul-General is herself soothing the sorrows of that child, and telling her, perhaps not without truth, that her mother will yet be found.* The Princesses attend to others, while Mr. and Mrs. Lynn give soup and warm drinks to those still dripping with the water, and cordials to those who are weak and faint-gratitude seems depicted on their countenances, though in some it is mingled with sorrow for the loss of their friends, whose corpses are now drifting with the tide. At this moment two men ascend the deck of the Affonso, and the French Princes, with a hurried step go to meet them, and cordially shaking them by the hand, commend their valour and success.
Those men were Frederick Jerome and Mr. Blag. don ; and a cry from the rescued emigrants, bless you, you have saved our lives”-closes this interesting scene.
The mother of the child, a very beautiful one, of which the lady of Admiral Grenfell had taken charge, was subsequently found at one of the hospitals. The meeting between mother and child was most affecting.
The Affonso weighed anchor, and following in the wake of the Queen of the Ocean, reached Liverpool in safety, and soon after this the Ocean Monarch, with a hissing noise and fresh burst of flames, sank in Abergele bay, in fourteen fathoms water.
The greatest care was bestowed upon the sufferers wlien they reached Liverpool and Birkenhead, by the police authorities and private individuals. handsome subscription was entered into, and those who desired it were forwarded to their destination those who now preferred remaining in England had the passage-money returned to them.
“When a party of sailors landed, some of their messmates, who had arrived in the yacht, greeted the new comers in the most tender terms, and the meeting of these hardy sons of Neptune is described as one of the most affecting. The men inquired eagerly after others of their comrades, and tears, both of joy and sorrow, ran down their cheeks."
“There has been considerable discrepancy in the state ments published as to the number of persons on board the Ocean Monarch at the time she left the Mersey, but the following is collected from authentic sources:Steerage passengers
322 First and second cabin
32 Captain and crew
Queen of the Ocean, yacht . 32