Narrative of a Voyage to Senegal in 1816 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 267 pages of information about Narrative of a Voyage to Senegal in 1816.



At the moment that we publish a Second Edition of our Narrative, we learn that Mr. Sevigny [A] is going to publish a pretended Account, by Mr. Richefort, an auxiliary Ex-Officer of the French Marine.

Our readers will not have forgotten a certain pretended sea-officer who was partly the cause of our misfortunes, and who, when on board the Medusa, gave such unhappy advice to the captain, who still more unhappily, followed it too closely; well; this ex-officer, this fatal auxiliary, who conducted the frigate upon the bank of Arguin, is no other than Mr. Richefort!

Having gone on board the governor’s boat, he remained a stranger to the disasters which he had partly caused, and consequently, knew nothing of what passed, either upon the raft, or on board the boats which stranded, or in the desert.

We make no farther remarks; the public will judge of his account and ours.

Correard and Savigny.

[A] This Mr. Sevigny must not be confounded with Mr. Savigny, one of the authors of this narrative.

This Mr. Sevigny is one of the directors of an anonymous company, which one of the King’s Ministers has recommended in the following manner: 

“The keeper of the seals has informed the magistrates, that an anonymous company, which had formed itself under the name of the Colonial Philanthropic Society of Senegambia, and which announced the project of procuring for all those who should confide in it, colonial establishments on the coasts near Cape Verd, has received no authority from the government, and that, on the steps which it has taken, to obtain such authority, it has been found that it was not in a condition to fulfil its promises, which, therefore, were a kind of snare, for those whom they might have seduced.  It has been, consequently, prohibited from making any enterprise, or any expedition.  The agents of this Society having no other object than to deceive the public credulity, must be denounced to his Majesty’s Attorney-General, who will take against them the measures prescribed by the law.”

(Journal des Debats, Novembre 24, 1817.)


The annals of the marine, record no example of a shipwreck so terrible as that of the Medusa frigate.  Two of the unfortunate crew, who have miraculously escaped from the catastrophe, impose upon themselves the painful and delicate task, of describing all the circumstances which attended it.

It was in the midst of the most cruel sufferings that we took the solemn resolution, to make known, to the civilized world, all the details of our unhappy adventure, if heaven permitted us again to see our dear country.  We should believe that we failed in our duty to ourselves, and to our fellow citizens, if we left buried in oblivion facts which the public must be desirous to know.  All the details of the events at which we were not present, have been communicated to us by respectable persons, who have warranted their authenticity.  We shall, besides, advance nothing which cannot be proved.

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