Outward Bound eBook

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The departure of the guests had a saddening effect upon the crew of the Young America, as they missed the children and the ladies very much; for, during their presence on board, the ship had assumed quite a domestic aspect, and all the idlers on deck found pleasing companions in the little boy and girl.

The limits of this volume do not permit a full detail of the entire voyage across the ocean.  Enough has been given to show the discipline of the ship, and the daily life of the boys on board of her.  For the next ten days the weather was generally favorable, and she laid her course all the time.  Some days she made two hundred miles, and others less than one hundred.

On the sixteenth day from her departure, she was in latitude 51 deg., 4’, 28” N.; longitude 31 deg., 10’, 2” W.; course, E. by N. In going from Cape Race, the southern point of Newfoundland, to Cape Clear, the southern point of Ireland, the Young America did not lay a straight course, as it would appear when drawn on a map or chart.  La Rochelle, on the western coast of France, and Cape Race are nearly on the same parallel of latitude, and the former is exactly east of the latter.  But the parallel on which both points lie would not be the shortest line between them.  A great circle, extending entirely around the earth in the broadest part, going through both, would not coincide with the parallel, but would run to the north of it a considerable distance at a point half way between the two places, the separation diminishing each way till the great circle crosses the parallel at Cape Race and La Rochelle.  The shortest course between the two points, therefore, would be the arc of the great circle lying between them.  A skilful navigator would find and follow this track.  This is called great circle sailing.

The Young America followed a great circle from Cape Race to Cape Clear.  Off the former point, her course was two points north of east; off the latter, it was half a point south of east.  On her twentieth day out she sailed due east.

After the excitement of the wreck and the departure of the passengers, Shuffles and his confederates resumed their operations in the Chain League, assisted somewhat by a case of discipline which occurred at this time.  When the ship was sixteen days out the Chain consisted of thirty-one links, in the cabalistic language of the conspirators, and Shuffles was in favor of striking the blow.



The business of the Chain had been managed with extreme caution by the conspirators, and more than one third of the crew had been initiated without the knowledge of the principal and professors, or of the officers and seamen who were not members.  Pelham and Shuffles ordered the affairs of the League, and no “link” was allowed to approach an outsider for the purpose of inducing him to join without the consent of one of these worthies.

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