A British ship wrecked in paradise

Loss of the British ship Sunda

Naval Chronicle - by Pascal Kainic






The Canton papers contain a distressing account of the loss of the British Ship "Sunda", Capt. Greig



Bound from London to China, on the 12th of October, 1839, the "Sunda" was about 40 miles to the northward of Tenhosa, in the Island of Hainan.

A tremendous gale was blowing at the time and all the sails were blown away, with a most terrific sea running, five feet of water in the hold, and the ship, which was very deep, was labouring very much. It was thought best for the general safety to run the vessel on shore.

Mr. and Mrs. MacPherson, with their infant, were washed away off the poop and drowned, about three hours after the ship grounded. Mr.Ilbery, Mrs. MacPherson's servant maid, with some of the crew were also drowned in attempting to reach the land, but Capt. Greig, Mr. Newbury and others of the crew gained the shore in safety, on different parts of the wreck.

On the second day, the weather moderated a little, and Capt. Greig went on board, in the ship's boat, which had been accidentally washed ashore, to try and save the treasure, which he succeeded in getting upon deck. The boat was sent to fetch more men from the shore, but was swamped in the surf, after which they had no means of landing any of the treasure.

Towards evening, the storm recommenced so suddenly, and raged with such fury, that those who were on the wreck were obliged to try to regain the shore in any way they best could, and all succeeded except Mr. Newbury, who unfortunately perished.

Fifteen persons in all were saved and seventeen were drowned. The value of the "Sunda" was said  to exceed £ 200.000...


Another treasure wreck in paradise !!




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