Imágenes de páginas

we have conversed, mention several such instances, but the Smith Sound ice combinations are rarely if ever seen by them in these seas we have been traversing.

[graphic][merged small]


l'age 210.


* *

* O Piloto, desta não era Inglez, bom Cosmografo, e com algum conhecimento da Astrologia ; se servira o principe de Orange * * e que da derradeira vez, que foi o anno de noventa e sinco (1595) chegára a oitenta e dous gráos do norte ; e que com ser a força do verão, e os dias quasi continuos, por não haver noite, senão se era de duas horas, achou os frios tão excessivos e tantos caramolles e neves, que se des faziam por aquelle estreito abaixo, que dando de rosto na sua não, a fizeram voltar.”—DIOGO DE Couto, Decad. xii. cap. ii.

That the Greenland whaling men also experience the kind of disasters recorded in the Smith Sound expeditions we had ample opportunity of collecting. One out of many such we give.

Here is the account of a vessel in search of Sir John Franklin in the year 1851, furnished by Captain Cator, who kindly gave us the information. He was at this time in company with Captain Sherard Osborn. The Intrepid was moored to some land ice ; a sudden gale came on; for a long time the hawsers held, and the ship was likely to ride out the storm, when suddenly the land floe they were fastened to broke with a loud crash and bore down, taking the ship with it. There was no time to extricate themselves, and as it came, crushing all before it (a tongue of ice jutting out

[ocr errors]

from a huge iceberg that lay aground close by), with terrific force she was lifted up, as piece after piece was forced over the others. As they reached the edge, the enormous pressure of the ice against the berg they were upon lifted the Intrepid high above the sea. Her keel was within forty feet of the surface she had been floating upon, and though but slightly injured herself, some of her boats were miserably crushed. In one short half-hour this misadventure fell upon them, and the men busied themselves in preparing for their escape in such boats as were left; and when everything that could be thought of had been done and all was ready for a final leave-taking of their ship, the ice gave way with a crash that destroyed everything within reach. The boats and their stores were lost. At last the ice on which the ship rested settled again into its position, and the ship slipped down off the ledge upon which she had been resting.

Our object in recording this disaster here is to prove the danger of ice when driven on a coast such as the east coast of Greenland, or the entrance of Smith Sound by some strong gale of wind. Each piece as it arrives careers over the field already there ; the huge obstruction soon grows top-heavy, and overbalancing carries annihilation to everything beneath its influence. The men sailing to Pond's Bay and

« AnteriorContinuar »