Narratives of Shipwrecks of the Royal Navy; between 1793 and 1849 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 346 pages of information about Narratives of Shipwrecks of the Royal Navy; between 1793 and 1849.
Hoppner and the other officers were therefore of opinion, that an absolute necessity existed for abandoning the Fury.  My own opinion being thus confirmed as to the utter hopelessness of saving her, and feeling more strongly than ever the responsibility which attached to me of preserving the Hecla unhurt, it was with extreme pain and regret that I made the signal for the Fury’s officers and men to be sent for their clothes, most of which had been put on shore with the stores.

’The Hecla’s bower-anchor, which had been placed on the beach, was sent on board as soon as the people came on shore; but her remaining cable was too much entangled with the grounded ice to be disengaged without great loss of time.  Having allowed the officers and men an hour for packing up their clothes, and what else belonging to them the water in the ship had not covered, the Fury’s boats were hauled up on the beach, and at two A.M.  I left her, and was followed by Captain Hoppner, Lieutenant Austin, and the last of the people in half an hour after.

’The whole of the Fury’s stores were, of necessity, left either on board her or on shore; every spare corner that we could find in the Hecla being now absolutely required for the accommodation of our double complement of officers and men, whose cleanliness and health could only be maintained by keeping the decks as clear and well ventilated as our limited space would permit.  The spot where the Fury was left is in latitude 72 deg. 42’ 30”; the longitude by chronometers is 91 deg. 50’ 05”; the dip of the magnetic needle, 88 deg. 19’ 22”; and the variation 129 deg. 25’ westerly.’

There now remains little more to be told—­the accident that befel the Fury, the lateness of the season, and the crowded state of the Hecla, deprived Sir Edward Parry of all hopes of being able that season of accomplishing the object for which the expedition had been despatched.

Under all these untoward circumstances, he determined to return to England, and on the 2nd of September the crew of the Fury were taken on board the Hecla, the boats hoisted up, the anchor stowed, and the ship’s head put to the north-eastward.

After a prosperous voyage, the whole of the Hecla and Fury’s crews, with but two exceptions, returned in safety to their native country, arriving at Sheerness on the 20th of October, in as good health as when they quitted England eighteen months before.

Lieutenant, now Captain Austin has, since these pages were written, been appointed to the command of an expedition in search of Sir John Franklin and his brave companions.

Captain Sir Edward Parry at present holds the appointment of Superintendent of the Royal Clarence Victualling Yard, and Haslar Hospital, Portsmouth.

FOOTNOTES: 

[17] The loss of the Fury is taken from Sir Edward Parry’s Voyage to the North Pole, published by Mr. Murray, who has kindly allowed it to be inserted in this work.

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Narratives of Shipwrecks of the Royal Navy; between 1793 and 1849 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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