« ΠροηγούμενηΣυνέχεια »
as well as astonishment, we perceived, that we were driven upon a sandy beach, instead of a rocky shore.
Soon after this, the day began to dawn, and we saw that our ship was high upon the beach. We were enclosed by rocks, but at such a distance as not to endanger our safety. When the morning came the storm subsided, and soon after sunrise, the sky was entirely clear of the clouds, which had spent their fury upon us. The sea gradually assumed a state of tranquillity, and we were left to take a calm survey of our condition.
We had been thrown upon the shore at no great distance from the water: so the captain entertained hopes that, in the course of two or three weeks, we should be able to get off the vessel. :
While we were considering these things, we heard a prodigious groaning at a considerable distance. We looked in the direction of the sound, and there we saw a very large whale,
that, like ourselves, had been driven upon the beach by the storm. Several of us left the ship and went to look at this huge creature. · It had been thrown upon the sand by the waves, and when the sea retired it left the helpless monster at a great distance from the water. There it lay moaning piteously, once in awhile slapping the earth with its tail, producing a sound more terrible than thunder. I went along side of this creature. Its bulk was truly astonishing. I believe a coach and two horses could have been driven into its mouth.
We soon returned to the ship, and began to make preparations to get her off. I need not tell you, that we all felt great anxiety on account of Jenkins and the two sailors. Whether they had gone back to the shore, or been lost in the sea, we could not tell, but the latter seemed by far the most probable. But it was in vain to indulge useless fears, and we continued to work at our ship with the greatest industry.
After all our exertions, five weeks elapsed before we got the ship into the water, and repaired the damages that had been done by the gale. Although winter was now approaching we steered to the north, intending to go to the cove where Jenkins and his companions were last seen in the boat, in the hope of still finding them alive.
We reached the spot in a day's sail; but the Indians had all removed to some other place to spend the winter, and we could learn no tidings whatever of our companions. We could see nothing of the boat, and we could find no trace that enabled us to form any opinion as to their fate. We fired several cannon, but the wild geese and ducks that rose from the water, seemed to be the only living things that heard the sound. At length we were obliged to leave the place, under the sąd conviction that our hearty friend and ship mate, and the two seamen, had found a watery grave.
CHAPTER IX. The vessel goes to Nootka. Something about Jewitt,
About the Indians. Shooting Walruses. The Marquesas islands. Easter island.
We now continued to sail to the northward along the coast, and stopped at various places to trade with the Indians. We went near Nootka sound, but a very short time before, a vessel from Boston had been taken by the Indians there, and the captain and all the crew but two were murdered. We did not like, therefore, to go among these savages. The two individuals of the crew who were not killed, were named Jewitt and Thompson. They remained in captivity with the Indians for two years. They were at length set free, and taken back to Boston, Jewitt wrote a very interesting book, giving an acconnt of his captivity. I advise you to read this book, if you can find it. If not, you can read the story in a little volume written by my friend Solomon
Bell, called Tales of Travels west of the Mississippi.'
We continued our course to the north, until we began to find large masses of ice in the water. The weather was now extremely cold, and there were few Indians on the coast. Those whom we saw were very short, and looked very much like the people of Lapland. of whom I have told you, in my Tales of Europe. .
One day we saw several strange animals upon the shore, and some of us went in a boat toward the place. As we came near to them, we saw that they were Seahorses or Walruses. We fired our guns at them, but they were too large to be killed by our bullets. They all scrambled into the water, and disappeared from our view. These creatures are very common on the northern coasts, and the people who dwell there, kill a great many of them for food.
Having now obtained a large quantity of