Hurricane and loss of the Jamaica


Hurricane and loss of the ship Jamaica

Annual register - by Pascal Kainic

A private letter from Bristol gives this narrative, about the "Jamaica", one of the ship of the Jamaica fleet...

After describing the hurricane of the 9th of  August 1814, and a narrow escape from having perished, in consequence of running foul of another vessel, the writer proceeds: 

"Towards the next day (the 10th) a calm came on, but the water kept increasing in the hold, notwithstanding all their pumping, till it rose to twelve feet high. About that time, they discovered two vessels at a distance (the brig "Hartley" and the ship "Friendship"). They immediately fired their guns as signals of distress, and they throw them overboard; the ship all this time water-logged and lying on her side.

In a short time, a not reached them from the brig with her captain, who very kindly, came to assist in rescuing the passengers and crew; two boat load of whom were sent off, part put on board the "Hartley" and part on board the "Friendship". The ship was sinking fast, however, they filled the boat the third time  and then captain Clement and Edmund (his nephew), left the ship, the captain of the brig insisting on remaining on board till all were out.

They had not left a minute before they were hailed by the cry that the ship was going down, and before the boat could reach her, she was completely out of sight and all the people in the water.

Those who could swim were saved, but the captain of the brig and three others were lost. Captain Clement's mate at one time felt the captain clinging to him in the water, but he was obliged to shake him off, or both must have been drowned, and they had so many in the boat that they were obliged to throw almost all the things they saved from the ship overboard.

One lady, a passenger, had a box of jewels worth upwards of a thousand pound was lost, but I am sure they can never be sufficiently thankful that their lives were preserved. Captain Clement, with 20 others, were taken on board the "Frienship", were he was a forth night without taking off his clothes, but the chief mate and height besides, went on board the "Hartley", which it was understood, was to sail for London, but she has not since been heard of, therefore it is greatly feared that they are gone to the bottom...

Captain Clement was put on shore at Weymouth, about nine o'clock  on Sunday evening, and arrived at Bristol  on the morning of Tuesday. None of the other ships have yet been heard of.

In the storm

In the hurricane

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