Archive for Captain’s servants

A Beating of Another Type…Laundry

Posted in How to with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 7, 2013 by creweofthearchangel

Laundry

A brief discourse on the methods of laundry aboard ship. Penned by Mae Harrington, a servant, indentured to John Sterling; he being captain of the Archangel, a private ship of war.

Duties
As ship’s laundress to the captain and his officers, all matters of washing, ironing, and mending fall to my care. Though I am achingly weary after a day at the tubs, there is something soothing in the repetition which makes my task less daunting.

Materials
The tools are my trade are few, and simple in their construction. Two large wooden tubs, slatted and heavy. One for washing, the other for rinsing. A basket of straw, loosely woven. A wooden paddle, or “beetle”, long of handle, broad and flattened at one end.

Methods
Though chamber lye or a mixture of ashes and animal fat will produce the desired cleanliness, I prefer to use lye made from the ashes of a hard wood such as oak, apple, or cherry. As fires aboard ship are hazardous and limited in their use, I procure a fair amount of ash before we leave our port. I fill the basket with layers of straw, gravel, and ash, then filter the ash through the weave of the basket by pouring hot water over top and letting it drain into the tub.
Piling dirty laundry into the tub, I allow it to soak for a period of time- pushing it to and fro with the end of my beetle. It is then heaped up or spread out on whatever is at hand…I prefer to use the deck of the ship, if a quiet corner may be found. Beating each piece of laundry with the paddle loosens the weave and helps to free the dirt trapped in the threads. It is then returned to the tub for a final scrub in the lye water, then rinsed in the barrel of clean water, wrung out, and hung or spread out to dry.

Sources:
http://www.oldandinteresting.com/history-of-laundry.aspx
http://www.mnwelldir.org/docs/misc/soap.htm

Copyright October 2013/J. Ashing

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Beaufort Pirate Invasion 8-10 August

Posted in Event Journal with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 17, 2013 by creweofthearchangel

To Mistress Murin McDonough
The Selkie’s Hyde
Hampton Roads
Virginia
11 August

My dearest Cousyn Murin,

Once again I hope that this Missive finds you well. The Merriweather Lads are in good Health. Captain has been under the Care of the Doctor but is feeling nearly himself now. I myself am at this writing in a weakened State as ill Spirits attack but, with God’s Grace and not the Doctors prescribed “Pine Tears” I will recover quickly.

Earlier in the Month the Captain received Word that there were Spanish Pirates in the Area of the North Carolina Colony harassing the Citizens of the Town of Beaufort. I know that ye are well aware of Captain Sterling’s opinion of Criminals who ride the Waves so it will come as no surprise that we have made haste to that Towne to lend Assistance in any way we might.

On Wednesday, the seventh of August, we approached the Shore Town of Beaufort with English Colors flying high. We anchored the Archangel then rowed to Shore. The Captain his Sons, Sean and Joshua Merriweather and I were first to Land. The locals appeared cautious as we approached but once Captain Sterling offered to help protect the Town against the invading Spanish we were greeted heartily and all manner of People from the Towne offered to help us.

We quickly brought Camp Gear and one Great Gun (always Gabriel is with us) ashore and set up the beginnings of a small Encampment near the Town’s Gaol with the Captains Tent and a smaller one for the Midshipmen. We also made use of what was left of an old Spritsail to create a Lean-to to Lodge Sailors at night and under which we might find additional Shade throughout the day. The Moisture in the air was great and our Clothes were soaked through by the effort put forth!

Amongst those in the first Shore Party was a newly recruited young Sailor Mitchell O’Sionnach. Happy am I that the wise Captain has found himself yet another skilled Irish Lad! Sterling made good use of him in assisting with the set-up of the Encampment and running Errands. I must say that the Lad O’Sionnach is a hard Worker eager to learn and help when he can and has already proven himself an asset to the Crewe. Grateful were we that the Locals offered to ease our Burden by offering a Hand in set-up for it made our Work go quickly.

Once settled we found an Establishment willing to serve us at a late Hour and had a meager Meal. Watches were set and we slept as peacefully as we could throughout the hot Night.

Thursday Morning came far too quickly in the hot Weather for my liking. Shortly thereafter Master Gunner Lasseter and his Indentured Servant Josephine Leguard were brought ashore and the Encampment grew by one Tent. The Officers met with the town’s folk as O’Sionnach, Josephine and I continued to set up the Encampment, filling the Cisterns with fresh Water, gathering Wood for Fire and tending to the needs of the Camp.

Captain asked that we also erect a small Wedge Tent for Master Blacksmith Cyphers. Master Cyphers, usually quite happy to string up his Hammock, had this past week, fallen when the Ship pitched unexpectantly and injured his Knee. The Doctor has prescribed that he stay off of it, a Prescription that Master Cyphers is quite unaccustomed to following. He has, however, suffered through the Horror of being waited on and may actually be allowing himself to enjoy the fact that the Crewe does indeed care for his well being and comfort.

Doctor Geiger and the Heathen Pilot Blackhorse brought Provision of Food to the Encampment. The Doctor is insistant that we eat a variety of fresh Foods, Fruits and Vegetables when available so he had the Heathen take him about the Area to see what might be found. Beaufort is a small and thinly inhabited Town. Outside the Towne there are still some native Peoples, having Blackhorse with him proved to be an asset in trading for the Crewe Nutritional needs. Tis a good change from Hardtack and Fish Stew. Doctor Geiger was also able to acquire a few Leaches in his search stating that they will not likely live long at Sea but he is glad to have them when he can. I watched him use one to help O’Sionnach with his ill Humors, rather interesting that was.doc and leeche tup

Once Camp was set the Captain ordered that one more small Tent be set up for the Ships paying Passenger Princess Jülide and her Child “Kitty” be brought to the Encampment feeling that she would be safer there. He also gave orders that the Laundress Mae Harrington be brought into Camp. I believe that he prefers her where we might keep watch over her given her questionable mental stability. Quite frankly, if I could, I would avoid her all together but my Work requires that I interact with her almost daily. I would rather reattach a Button on my own before I would ask her to do so. It is best to tread lightly with that one since the Accident.

The Encampment remained quiet all Evening with everyone going about their own activities. The Evening turned to night, watches were once again set and all were abed early.

On Friday, the ninth Day of August we were up and about our work early as usual. The Officers met with the local Constabulary to discuss how we might help against the Invasions by the Spaniards. Many of the Towns Inhabitants came to visit our Encampment and found interest in Camp Activities so we shared what Knowledge of Weapons and Tactics, and Navigation. The doctor was able to impart some Wisdom to those who showed interest in his Skills. The Children found the Heathen’s Tales highly fascinating. The Laundress also made a few extra Pence washing Laundry for a few of the Sailors in Port. Josephine was able to find some of the Ingredients for her Apothecary Stores and even had some of the Children in the Towne assist in the making of some Concoction.

The Afternoon brought an Attack by Spanish Pirates who were defeated before coming ashore. The Archangel sent Word from the Ship with Custis Makemie and Shaughnessy Barnidge to the Captain and the two Men then remained with us on shore, gladly lending a Hand as needed. Aye, two more Irishmen, the Captain attracts good Folk! The Towne was in celebration after turning away the Spanish once again. The Princess was asked to Dance. I know that the Captain was not pleased by this. Her dance, shameful by some standards. Please say nothing to the Captain for I would not disgrace him by admitting that such beauty and grace is indeed pleasing to watch.

Later that evening much of the town, still in Celebration, gathered for a Meal and some Entertainment. Many of the Ships in Port offered up someone to sing or play. I was asked by the Captain to sing “Over the Hills and Faraway” as part of the entertainment. I was not in my best Voice due to a soreness in my throat but I believe that I managed well enough. Would that you were there for your Voice has always been more pleasing than mine dear Cousyn.

Saturday followed Friday, as it is want to do, and I found myself having to defend the Captains Breakfast from little miss Kitty who came in with wooden Sword drawn. I was forced to draw the largest wooden Spoon I could find do fight her off! The Lass brightens even the darkest Day. She is a sweet one with a Smile that lights up the Camp, fair of Face like her Mother. Not once on the Voyage have I seen or heard her complain or misbehave.

The Day once again grew hot quickly. The Lass, Kitty, was able to keep cool in the Laundress’s wash Tub, would that I too would fit! The Crewe’s Work on shore was nearly done and the Captain’s Things set in order when the Call went up from the town that Spanish were once more making way to attack. The Master Gunner called for me to man the great Guns that had been brought ashore along with Blackhorse, Joseph, and the Doctor, who ran the Powder so that he could be on the Field and available if any injuries needed tending. One small Vessel with only three or four rowdy Spaniards came forward and were easily thwarted with a few shots across her Bow and a few local Women throwing rotten Fruit at them. We scoffed at the Attack but did not lay off the watch for a larger Ship had been reported earlier. Sure as the Sun will rise, the larger Ship sailed into our range and the true Battle began. Great Guns ringing on both sides. A few of the Pirates manage to make it to Shore. The Casualties on both sides were few but the Doctor’s Services were indeed needed. With our aid the local Militia and towns folk were able not only to save the Town but also captured two of the Pirates to bring into town for a Trial.

I myself was charged with keeping the prisoners in line. We made good use of the Gaol and the towns folk were able to come “pay their respects” to the pirates who awaited trial. I tell you there was no love there and the Gaoler was able to make a few shillings for himself.

With the governor out of town it fell to Captain Sterling to officiate at the trial. The first Lad, one Thomas Smyth, brought before the good Captain claimed to have been pressed into service claimed to be an apprentice to a “felter”. The boy swore to sign on to the Archangel at least until he was able to earn passage back to his homeland so the Captain released him into the custody of the Master at Arms. As to the second prisoner I am sad to report the man, Lochlainn Tiarnach, also from our beloved Ireland was defiant through it all. He, being Irish, I had hoped to would find some remorse in him but there was none. He had no defense just defiance. The crowd began to call for him to be hanged . The Captain passed sentence, death. Tierney’s last drink, which Captain Sterling granted him, was used not to quench his thirst but to spew on the Captain! He looked at me as if I were the traitor not he. I can not say that this surprises me given the history between the English and the Irish but attacking innocent Townsfolk, no matter who he serves, makes him a criminal. Finally the Captain could stand it no longer and the crate that held him above the crowds for all to see was kicked from beneath him. The life choked out of him slowly. Dearest Cousyn, I will never become accustomed to watching someone hanged. Never.

The Evening allowed some Time to relax and the Captain and his Boys, along with Kitty played nine pin. The Locals once again, fed us as they celebrated the Engagement of two of their own. The Feast gave those who call the Archangel home another chance to socialize. The Captain even extended his Table and invited all to join in the Meal.

The Weatherglass rose so all was made ready for the impending Storm. As is often the case, these Instruments of prognostication are not always easily read and what was to be a Storm was but a short period of Rainfall that barely dampened the Canvas and did not dampen the Spirits of the Crewe and Guests at all. Thus the Celebration continued until Midnight

Sunday brought new Orders from Captain Sterling. The Towne now in the Hands of its Citizens and the Spanish defeated, the Encampment was packed and loaded once again onto the Archangel. We bad farewell to the Town of Beaufort and weighed Anchor at about two Hours past noon.

It is my hope that the Captain will be making for Hampton soon and then to his Plantation, Migdal-El, not far from there in Virginia. If that be the case then I am sure he will take Time to visit ye at the Hyde while in Hampton. I then shall ask leave of him to visit with ye, for it has been far too long since I have taken the Time to enjoy yer Company.

Your humble Servant & devot’d Cousyn,
James Fionntan Murtaugh

Copyright September 2013/M. Fleckenstein
Special Thanks to Diane Shultz & Jason Goldsmith for the use of their photographs

Thinking back: Fionn Murtaugh, Captain’s Steward

Posted in Crewe Reflections... with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 3, 2013 by creweofthearchangel

Who are you?

James Fionntan Murtaugh, from Galway Ireland. Most just call me Fionn.

What are your dealings with the Archangel?

I’m d’capins Steward. Tis my responsibility to see to the capin’s personal needs. I take care of him, Lord knows someone must! I tell ye he would work hisself to death tendin’ to the running of the ship and the care of the crewe if left to his own. I also do what I can t’help make im appear his best at all times, especially where business is concerned. Tis said I set a fine table which has made my captain proud and many another act as if bitten by the green-eyed monster.

What is your most memorable event concerning that relationship, and do you have any prized possessions connected to the event?

When d’capin, decided t’ included me in his household staff, having me assist him not only on d’ship but in his home. It was then I knew, with no uncertainty, he appreciated my work and my attention t’detail, although I tell ye, oft times he is obviously irritated by what he calls my “fussing” over him and his tings. In that one decision he showed that he trusted me with his most prized “posession”, his family. He pays me well, not only in wages but in respect. He serves our crewe well, I do my part in service to him.

Prized possession? I’ve none. I nil give tings much value. Tis m’reputation, my integrity what I value most. That and the reptation of the Capin and ship he serves. He is a devote master and serves us well.

copyright 8/2013 M.Fleckenstein

Note:

“Having thus wriggled himself into his captain’s good graces, he endeavours to fix them, by following his leader in all his paces; which he does so exactly, that in less than a twelvemonth he obtains the garland of praise, Like master, like man.”
The Wooden World Dissected; In the Character of a Ship of War, by Ned Ward

The Captain’s Steward is hired by the captain not by the ship. He is often the only domestic servant on the ship. He tends to the needs of the captain only. He has exclusive access and control of the captain’s pantry, taking charge of and obtaining all the provisions for use in the great cabin. These distinctions usually find him an enemy in the mate, who does not like to have anyone on board who is not entirely under his control; the crew do not consider him as one of their number, so he is left to the mercy of the captain.

Fionn Murtaugh

Beaufort Pirate Invasion 8-10 August

Posted in Event Journal with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 19, 2013 by creweofthearchangel

Excerpts from the Journals of Alice Mason and Mae Harrington
Alice Mason and Mae Harrington

Alice Mason
Thursday

After a long but uneventful journey, we are docked in the town of Beaufort. Credible reports of invading ships from Spain led the captain to make this detour. The townspeople welcomed the arrival of reinforcements against the Spanish pirates and have been most accommodating. Other ships already wait in the harbor, lines and sails prepared for the invasion, whenever it comes.

Being civilians, the laundress Mae Harrington, Kitty, and I were some of the last to disembark the Archangel and arrive in camp. Already present were Mr. Dorian Lasseter the Master Gunner, Josephine Legard his indentured, Matthew Black Horse the heathen pilot, Mr. Adam Cyphers the blacksmith, Sean Merriweather and Joshua Merriweather, Dr. Gerome Geiger, Mr. Mitchell O’Sionnach, Fionntan Murtaugh the captain’s steward, and of course, Captain John Sterling himself.
pennant new
The night is humid and heavy, the heat of the day lingering long after the sun has set. Kitty and I, together with the unsettling laundress, have been given temporary quarters in an unused portion of the goal until our tent can be readied on the morrow. T’is time we got some rest, but I will be sleeping with one eye open…

Mae Harrington
Friday

My eyes open to sunlight filtering through the bars of the gaol windows. Mistress Mason and the child have begun to stir, and I hear the sounds of the camp awakening outside. I arise and dress quickly. Hurrying down the stairs and out of the gaol, I encounter the steward. Fionn directs me to where our cargo was unloaded the previous night, and I sort through crates until I locate my belongings, as well as those of Mistress Mason and Kitty. With the assistance of a few members of the crewe, our tent is quickly erected and our belongings stowed away.

Now the day’s work begins in earnest.
487968_201140483388648_1991909703_nCaptain Sterling, Mister Lasseter and the men-at-arms are engaged in checking and rechecking the state of their weapons and discussing plans of action. The steward is preparing breakfast and tidying the Captain’s tent.

Mlle. Legard is at work with her herbs, laying in stock any medicines that may be needed after the battle. Likewise the good doctor is taking stock of his implements and preparing for an influx of the wounded.

Mistress Mason settles herself on a cushion beneath the shade of a tree with a delicate bit of sewing as Kitty explores the encampment. 581751_10151796609088497_1698029913_nHaving suffered an injury to the knee prior to our departure, the Blacksmith reclines on a rug and keeps us company as we go about our duties. I enlist the help of the heathen guide and one of the midshipmen to fill the large washtubs and call for dirty laundry.

As the day wears on, there is a constant stream of both militia and civilians through our camp. The reputation of the Archangel’s Captain and crewe has indeed preceded us. Gunners stop to admire our great guns and ask questions as to their operation and care, civilians walk past with wide-eyed children clinging to their hands, curiosity eventually prodding them to say a few words or ask questions. The doctor’s instruments, the heathen’s trappings, ship’s navigational equipment, the games played to pass long voyages at sea, even the mundane methods of laundry are of great interest to some. Kitty drew smiles and laughter when she decided that my tub of clean water was the ideal place to escape the heat and dust.
63690_201141206721909_2115225926_n

The hours pass quickly. As the evening approaches, a call for entertainment is made throughout the encampments. The best talents are nominated to represent each crewe, and a stage is set up. The steward, Fionn, has a magnificent singing voice and is elected to represent the Archangel’s crewe. Singers, musicians, poets, actors…a diverse lot of entertainers join together and give us a most enjoyable evening.

Dinner1003508_201137613388935_651941966_n is a quiet affair. Tomorrow will most likely bring a battle, and rest is needed. We sit together in groups of twos and threes, talking quietly until the call for lanterns-out is given.

543412_10151805320263497_209061262_nMae Harrington
Saturday

Saturday morning broke hot and humid. All over the encampment preparations for battle continue. Breakfast is hurried, appetites are small. Mid-morning, the boom of a distant cannon echoes across the water, and a shout goes up. Spanish warships have been sighted far out in the bay and are advancing toward the town with great speed.1176244_10151805228993497_1000591672_n Mistress Mason, Kitty and I bid the Captain and gunners farewell as they gather their weapons and hasten to join the other defenders along the waterfront. Long hours pass with no news of how the battle fares. 1174745_10151805316268497_1901944436_nShouts, the boom of the great guns and staccato bursts of fire from the small arms provide a persistent background to our mornings’ work. At long last the noise subsided, and our crew returned bringing tidings of victory. The Spanish are defeated, those remaining alive have returned to their ships and fled, and the handful taken prisoner are swiftly confined in the gaol. 1000941_10151805322838497_1335752218_n

Alice Mason
Saturday

There is much celebrating after the battle, with music and dancing all along the waterfront. Due to my Turkish attire no doubt I was invited to participate in one of the dances for the amusement of the militia and townsfolk, and found that I enjoyed it a good deal, though I am certain the captain did not approve.
1170736_10201020510614047_860802453_na
The festive mood lingered even hours later, when the captured pirates were brought forth to be hanged. Captain Sterling as the proper authority heard the men plead for their lives. The first two were pardoned, 535869_618261141527606_1726804475_nhaving been pressed into service by the pirates. The third was not so fortunate. 1174982_618264384860615_1972795270_nAn Irishman by name of Laughlin Tierney, he was defiant from the start. When offered a final request he asked for a tankard of water, of which he only drank a small portion and then flung the greater part into Captain Sterling’s face. After that little time was wasted. 1186861_618267444860309_1640788118_nrobinAmid the raucous demands of the crowd, the crate that supported the man was kicked from beneath him and he danced about on the end of the line before finally hanging slack.

The remainder of the afternoon was spent about our duties. Numerous townsfolk still filtered through the camp, discussing the events of the day amongst themselves and with various crew officers. As the sun began to sink lower and the heat of the day began to ease, everyone gave themselves to more pleasurable amusements. The captain arranged a game of Skittles, or Nine-Pins, with the Merriweather boys and Kitty and it was difficult to tell whom enjoyed the game most. skittles game tupMost of the crew gathered to watch, and afterward we all sat down to another fine meal prepared by the townsfolk.

That is always the best part of any day, when the crew and passengers such as myself and Kitty sit together at the captain’s table, to fellowship and enjoy the harmony we find amongst ourselves. Even the captain and I have learned to put aside our differences for those couple of hours, and the conversation and laughter flows freely. 1150258_201741913328505_1748179776_n

As night came on the weather glass indicated incoming weather, so the camp was a flurry of activity as tents were secured, belongings covered, and all made ready for the storms. In the end there was only a little rain instead of the squall line that we feared, but for the duration of it the majority of the crew sheltered in another unused portion of the goal, to continue the fellowship begun at the dinner table until it was time to retire for bed.

Alice Mason
Sunday

Today we are to return to the Archangel and continue on our voyage. The day is as sweltering as the two previous. By mid-morning trunks are packed and tents lowered. When all the canvas is folded and stored away we say our final goodbyes to the townsfolk. The noon hour passes before we finally go on our way in the afternoon, leaving this small town that has found a place in all our hearts. 935937_10151796661063497_1558886659_n1170771_201295210039842_431509565_n734345_10151803396053497_1107213202_n

Copyright8/2013S.W.Permenter/J.Ashing
With special thanks to Diane Shultz for the use of her photographs.

Military Through the Ages, Jamestown Settlement, Williamsburg, Virginia

Posted in Event Journal with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 2, 2013 by creweofthearchangel

josephine

Josephine’s Journal
The Account of an Indentured Servant’s Adventures with the Crewe of the Archangel

Friday, 28, April 1719
I stood on the deck as the Archangel moor’d just off of the western shore of Ile de Ré around midday. As the crewe load’d the boats, which would ferry the burial party and our necessary goods ashore, I could not help but admire the beauty of the island. Somewhere in my mind, I recall’d being a little girl and overhearing my father talk about the religious siege that took place long ago on the island. It was hard to believe that such a beautiful spot held such a violent past. My thoughts were broken by the Master Gunner’s voice calling me to his side. It was time to go disembark.
Those of us going ashore climb’d into the boats and made our way to the beach, along with several injured and two dead crewe members, one of whom was Lieutenant Hazzard. Images of the most recent battle in the Mediterranean flash’d through my mind and I shuddered as I tried to remove it from my head. The cloudy weather add’d to the somber mood as we work’d to set up camp and build a fire before darkness fell. The dead men were laid out under a canopy within our camp, the Lieutenant in his burial clothes and the seaman in his hammock. The Archangel, having suffer’d minor damages during an attempt on a merchant ship during our latest conflict, the War of Quadruple Alliance in the Mediterranean, made way for La Rochelle on the mainland for quick repairs. Although we hope it to be a short stay, the officers intend to remain until the wounded, the captain being one of such, recuperate. We had removed several great guns from the ship when we left, bringing them on shore with us as a means of protection. Having set up camp and eaten a light dinner, we have retired to our tents for the night. Tomorrow begins the burial process.

Saturday, 29 April, 1719
We awoke early, as there was much work to be done, and found that the weather had deteriorated further. The clouds overhead open’d up around mid-morning, forcing several crewe members to maintain the fire and the rest of us to move as much of our chores under canvas as possible. I, myself, moved my basket under the canopy with the doctor and the dead, and began attending to my remedies. Josephine and Matt by the fire With the injured members of the crewe among us, I was only too happy to assist Dr. Geiger. I had brought along several simple herbal physicks for injuries, both internal and external, and spent the day prepping the herbs and administering them to the crewe members who were in need. Doctor Geiger was prepared to amputate if necessary, but thankfully the amputation needs were few. The Master Gunner, Dorian Lasseter, and the Master at Arms, Constable Heartless, maintained the guns and kept a close eye on the sea for any Spanish ships that may appear. The Bosun and the blacksmith were busy throughout the day making repairs that would be needed once we were back on board the Archangel,

Adam making nails

while Mister Merriweather the Younger attended to the food with the assistance of Mister Merriweather the Elder, our pilot Matty Black Horse, and ABS Atlas. Fionn and Sean at lunch Captain Sterling had received a wound to the head, when a powder chest on the quarterdeck accidently ignited during our last encounter, and was being given time to relax near the fire while the wound healed. The Capitaine’s Steward, Fionntan Murtaugh, managed to have Mon Capitaine kept comfortable, fed, and even had him seated a couple times throughout the day. This is no small task!
Although we were standing on French soil, I felt out of place. I missed my home, my brother, and my father, but having been away for so long I now wonder’d if I could even continue to call it home. I found that I had grown attach’d to the crewe of the Archangel, and I was looking forward to returning with them to England and resting up from our endeavors in the Mediterranean. I do not believe that I will ever grow accustom’d to battle, and to losing members of our crewe. How lucky these men are to receive a proper burial! (and how fortunate we are as well that they shall be well grounded)The Lieutenant being an officer, Mon Capitaine did all in his power to find land in which to bury the body. Burial at sea, where the fish and other sea creatures destroy your remains, makes it impossible for you to enter heaven upon your death. The crewe always makes every effort to find land when an officer dies. The seaman that we are burying was brought along as we were already burying one; we figured we should bury the other on land as well. Had it been just the seaman who passed, he would have been sent to the depths. It is all just too horrible to imagine. I hope their remains will rest easy, as both being Protestant, they have been turned away from our Catholic cemeteries on the main land.
The rain has picked up, and exhaustion is setting in. Tomorrow, we bury the dead, and soon, the wounded permitting, return to the Archangel.

J. Otte © 2013 All rights reserved

special thanks to Krystian Williams for her photographs

Ringing in the New Year

Posted in Event Journal with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on January 8, 2013 by creweofthearchangel

Josephine’s Journal
The Account of an Indentured Servant’s Adventures with the Crewe of the Archangel

January 1

snotties 1

It seems there was an incident this past afternoon just prior to the New Year celebration. The ship is moored in Hampton Roads area for a few months due to the winter weather. And though, close to home many of the crewe have remained on board. The Master Gunner prefers to stay on board to keep watch and maintain the guns, and being indentured to him, I remain as well. Should the weather become too much to endure, we always have the comfort of The Sealkie’s Hyde nearby; an ordinary owned by one of Capitaine Sterling’s friends. Yesterday, the weather was cool but dry so the Merriweather boys were sent ashore to retrieve the Capitaine’s mail bags from several coffee houses and the Hyde. After arriving at the Hyde, the boys helped themselves to food and punch…apparently too much punch.

As the afternoon wore into the evening, Capitaine Sterling seemed to grow concerned that some evil had befallen the Merriweather boys. I had brought hot tea and laudanum to the Capitaine several times and could not help but notice the worried look he wore upon his face. He called for the Master Gunner to accompany him ashore to search for the boys, starting with their destination at The Sealkie’s Hyde. When they arrived at the Hyde, Mistress McDonough greeted them and recalled the arrival of the midshipmen and the retrieval of the mail packet, but with the increased business in the afternoon she could not recall their leaving. A quick search of the premises revealed the two midshipmen in a corner of the establishment; face down in their food and punch. snotties 2

From what the Master Gunner related to me upon his return, Sean Merriweather had to be carried from the ordinary back to the ship whilst Joshua Merriweather was able to stagger his way back on foot with the assistance of Mon Capitaine. Needless to say, they were sequestered in the great cabin for some time, no doubt receiving a severe scolding for their actions. snotties 3

And thus, with the midshipmen safe on board, we had Gabriel announce the New Year with plenty of shot and powder and then retired to our own share of punch and sweetmeats.

The Merriweather Lads

Posted in Crewe Member Bios with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 7, 2012 by creweofthearchangel

Joshua and Sean Merriweather, Captain’s Servants or, more commonly known later as, Midshipmen. Born sometime during the late 17th century in Bristol, England.

Misters Joshua Merriweather (the Younger) and Sean Merriweather (the Elder) serve as midshipmen on board the Archangel. Their father, Thomas Merriweather, worked as a sailing master for William Sterling’s trading company. Thomas was on board the Hart when a violent tempest sent her crashing onto the shores of Algiers.
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