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From: Trisha McLeod <>
Subject: [ZA-EC] CAPE AND NATAL NEWS 01 AUGUST 1861
Date: Sat, 11 Feb 2012 22:32:17 -0800 (PST)
01 AUGUST 1861
The Royal Mail steamer Norman arrived at Plymouth on the evening of July 30 and 54 passengers. The following are their names :-
Hon. J. MOSENTHAL
Hon. Mr. BARRINGTON and 2 masters
Mr. HOPEWOOD and child
Miss. Anne EAGLE
Mrs. NISBET and 2 children
Colonel and Mrs. HILL
Colonel and Mrs. Kent MURRAY and child
Colonel FARRAN and 2 children
Assist. Com.-Gen. SMITH
Lt. and Mrs. CURRIE and child
Miss. Ellen HUGHES
Mr. John Owen SMITH and Mrs. SMITH
Messrs. BRANDISH (2)
Captains WEIGHILL and McQUEEN and 3 servants.
Trading was unusually dull. The stocks of wine were low. The losses sustained by the wool speculators in the Eastern Provinces were considerable. There was a good demand for shipping.
The usual festivities of the Queen's birthday were, in a measure affected by the news of the death of the Duchess of Kent. The ball at Government House was postponed to the 12th of the present month, and the levee indefinitely. Still, on the bay a regatta had been contrived, and here the members of the rival rowing clubs the "Union" and "South African" - exhibited their prowess.
The Roman Rock light, at the entrance to Simon's Bay was to be lit on the 16th September, from which time it would substitute the floating light now moored within a cable's length of the north end of the rock.
The Law of Inheritance Bill is still before the Assembly in Committee, but its fate, since the League leaders have combined to oppose it, is at best but dubious.
In the theatrical world this month things have been brisk. Mr. PARRY has got a capital little working company together, and the Cape public appear for once inclined to support them properly.
It is proposed to organise another rowing club, to be termed the Civil Service Rowing Club, and on the principle of "the more the merrier," the Cape Town people like the prospect of having three rowing clubs to enliven the dull monotony of Cape Town life by giving occasionally an exciting race on the bay.
A cricket club has been recently formed at Simon's Town.
Mr. OLIFF, whose wife was drowned from the wreck of the Bernicia, was about to conduct the new school at Constantia.
THE WRECK OF THE BERNICIA : - The following are the details of the wreck of the bark Bernicia on Robben Island, and the loss of seven lives, on the 16th June. "On Sunday night, a quarter of an hour before midnight, and when the captain calculated he was about fifty miles from land, the ship, running for Table Bay, struck near Shell Bay, on he outside of Robben Island. The night was pitch dark and the rain fell heavily. The Green Point light could not be seen nor was anything visible by which the position of the ship could be made-out. There was a very heavy sea and the breakers broke over the ship at a tremendous height and swept the decks the moment she struck. The passengers jumped out of bed instantly and rushed upon deck, it was with difficulty that some of them were got out of their cabins. Mrs. PRITCHARD was dragged up through the skylight.
The ship was not on the rocks ten minutes before she parted. The fore-part of her, with four of the sailors on it, drove on the reef near the shore, and a large quantity of the cargo was swept on to the beach.
This part of the ship was so near the rocks that the sailors were able to get upon them, and clambered their way over them to the beach.
Amongst the cargo was a large quantity of wines, spirits, and beer, and these sailors no sooner found themselves safe than they broached the casks and commenced drinking. The after-part of the ship, on which were the captain, mate, the passengers, and the steward, instead of washing in with the fore-part of the ship, settled down further out, and any attempt by the captain to get the passengers off would have been worse than futile. Had such an attempt been made every one of them must have been lost. There was nothing left but to watch for daylight. There were two lady passengers with three children each, one of them, Mrs. PRITCHARD, the wife of Mr. Pritchard, secretary to the Admiral, the other the wife of Mr. OLIFF, whose husband was by her side. These ladies were only just able to reach the deck in their night dresses before the ship parted. All then got upon the raft. Within a half-hour after she struck the sternmost portion, on which were the
passengers and others, heeled over and all on it were obliged to get over from the deck upon the side. Even this part of the ship was, in less time than it takes to tell the story, a heap of broken timbers. But for a quantity of flooring boards belonging to Searight and Co., a part of the cargo, having floated under the lee of the wreck and rested upon the rocks, and
formed a kind of raft, all hands must have been drowned. Upon this raft all hands got. For six dreary hours did these people, passengers and sailors, watch for the daylight to come. They were drenched to the skin, breaker after breaker fell upon them with tremendous force, and they were only kept from a watery grave by clinging with all their might to the raft.
One of the children, the youngest of Mrs. PRITCHARD's, was washed out of its mother's arms within an hour from the time the ship struck. The unfortunate lady is said to have remained surprisingly collected, and she bravely exerted her best efforts to save the other two. She suffered in silence and never once complained. In a short time the second of her children was washed off the wreck and seen no more, in spite of all she could do to prevent it. These were followed by two of Mrs. OLIFF's children, who perished instantly, and the mother, unable to hold on longer, was swept away too. The captain found the oldest of Mrs. PRITCHARD's children quite stiff and apparently dead, lying some distance from her mother. He snatched it up and wrapped it in his coat, and nursed it into life. Piece by piece of the wreck was torn off by the raging sea, and the planks upon which they stood quivered at the shock of every wave, and their hope of succour was frail indeed.
Every minute seemed an hour as the crashing timbers were torn away. At daylight the captain saw where his ship had gone ashore, but still nothing could be done. As the morning broke he saw his men lying about drunk upon the rocks and on the beach. Neither the captain nor the mate liked to leave the ship until the passengers were on shore, but not being recognised, they jumped into the sea, and with difficulty reached the beach. The captain was nearly lost. They went immediately to Dr. MINTO, and several of the lunatics rushed to the scene of the wreck to give assistance. One of them, McKENNA, who is a lunatic convict, jumped into the sea at the risk of his own life, and got Mrs. Pritchard on shore with a rope, and with the assistance of his companions all the passengers were saved, and it was not until she reached the shore that her spirits gave way. All the passengers met with the greatest sympathy from Dr. MINTO and his family. The sailors remained
drunk and drinking all the time. The lunatics and paupers joined them, and they all got drunk together on Monday. On Tuesday and Wednesday they were locked and prevented from getting near the liquor again. Captain Jamieson no sooner heard the melancholy account of the wreck than he pushed off with his crew and rendered all the assistance in his power, and a watch was placed over the cargo. The water police finally took charge of the crew.
The drowned were :- Mrs. PRITCHARD's two children, Mrs. OLIFF and two children, Mr. VAN BOORK, and one sailor, the saved were - Mrs. PRITCHARD, daughter, and servant, Mr. OLIFF and son, Mr. NICOLL, and Mr. HASALL.
During the past month the agricultural districts of the Western Province have lost one of their warmest advocates by the death of Dr. GIRD. Dr. Gird came to the colony during the regime of Lord Charles Somerset, intending to enter the Civil Services, but in all the political questions of the day, and especially devoted himself to the advocacy of everything likely to advance the prosperity of the colony. He gained what he justly earned, the respect of all who knew him.
The obituary of the month also contains the name of Dr. MORGAN, whose death occurred at the residence of Sir. W. CURRIE, Graham's Town. Dr. Morgan was commissioned in 1818, and had served with distinction in this colony, India, and the West Indies. He received the Kafir medal for his services in the frontier wars.
There has been an entertaining newspaper correspondence on the subject of "nobs and snobs," bearing on the Union mail steamers. A complaint has been made, it is said, by a snob, that too much deference is paid to nobs on board the mail boats. The popularity of the boats can bear a little ill-natured criticism, and the general testimony borne to the excellence of the accommodation and to the courtesy of the commanders is a sufficient answer to a silly and ill-tempered complaint which is not sustained by an atom of evidence.
At Graham's Town a grand concert by Mr. WEISBECKER, assisted by the Musical Society, was about to be given.
The bank at Montagu has been resolved on.
An unfortunate young man, a Dutchman who had accomplished the whole distance from the Free State to within a few miles of Karoo Poort, there the effort proved too much for him. He begged the driver of the cart to stop, he dismounted raving mad, and shortly afterwards perished miserably in the veldt.
A young whale calf was caught in Algoa Bay on the 20th inst., it measures 18 feet in length. A cow was in company with it, but made off.
G. WOOD, of Graham's Town, has, it is said, purchased the whole of Mr. W.A. THOMPSON's sugar estate and plantations at Natal for 10,000pounds cash!
The enemy of the sheep farmer, Xanthium Spinosum, is making great ravages in Natal. English pheasants have been landed in a healthy state, and an endeavour is being made to localise this favorite bird in the wide veldts of Natal.
The erection of King William's Town into a borough is now a great fact. The Chancellors have elected Mr. Henry Leonard HEAD as mayor.
The electric telegraph erected between King William's Town and East London is doing good service, occasionally the wires get broken or disturbed by carelessness of waggoners in using their whips while passing under them.
The report of the Albany General Hospital has been published, it had 204 patients during the preceding twelve months.
The committee of the Botanical Garden is disseminating and planting trees and shrubs through the whole of the frontier, and even beyond the colony as far as the Free State, so that Graham's Town is being looked upon as the great botanic nursery of the Eastern Province.
BIRTHS, MARRIAGES, AND DEATHS
May 23, at King William's Town, the wife of Mr. E. WARRINGHAM, of a son
May 30, at Port Alfred, the wife of Adolph ARENHOLD, of a daughter
June 5, at Alexandria, the wife of Captain W.H. GIBBON, of a son
May 21, at Cape Town, Mrs. Charles Peter LANE, of a son
May 24, at Cape Town, Mrs. A.C. BERRANGE, of a daughter
May 25, at Cape Town, Mrs. ORPEN, of a daughter
May 26, at Cape Town, Mrs. F. HAMILTON, of a daughter
June 14, at Cape Town, Mrs. G. HUGHES, of a daughter
May 27, at Cape Town, Mr. Jacob Daniel Johannes BOSMAN, to Miss. Phillippina Helen POEZYN
May 30, at Port Elizabeth, B.G. LENNON, third son of Mr. E.S. LENNON, of Ireland, to Elizabeth, fourth daughter of the late Mr. Richard SMITH, of Yorkshire, England
June 3, at Cape Town, Mr. Gabriel Jacobus LE ROUX, to Miss Aletta Catharina Sibella LIEBNITZ
June 3, at Cape Town, Captain Dugald FERGUSON, to Mrs. Clarissa Annie TELLET
June 4, at Cape Town, Mr. Samuel Thomas JONES, to Miss Emily Harriet STONE
May 22, at Zonnebloom, Miss Adelaide Mary AINGER, Mission Teacher, aged 25 years
May 30, at Graham's Town, William Emanuel Knight, only son of Mr. J. COLEMAN, aged 27 years and 9 months
June 5, at Graham's Town, the wife of Mr. Joseph Short, of Salem, aged 73 years and 4 months
June 6, at Queenstown, Joseph, eldest son of Mr. Joseph WEAKLY, of Graham's Town, aged 44 years and 24 days
June 7, at Cape Town, Mrs. Catharina Elizabeth Scholtz, relict of the late J. DAY, aged 71 years
|[ZA-EC] CAPE AND NATAL NEWS 01 AUGUST 1861 by Trisha McLeod <>|