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THE DISMASTING OF THE SCHOONER ACADIA OFF EAST CAPE.

   
Grey River Argus, 27 September 1876, Page 2

THE DISMASTING OF THE SCHOONER ACADIA OFF EAST CAPE.

We are indebted to the shipping reporter of the Hawkes Bay Herald for files containing the following graphic narrative of the disaster :- The s.s. Pretty Jane which arrived at this port from Auckland via Tauranga, brought with her the hull of the schooner Acadia, which she picked up in distress off the East Cape on Thursday, August 24. We gather the following particulars of the disasters which befell this vessel from the narrative of the captain. The Acadia, a fore-and-aft rigged schooner, 58 tons measurement, about 20 months old, owned by D. H. McKenzie and myself, sailed from Mercury Bay on Thursday, August 10, with a cargo of 40 000 feet of timber for Lyttelton. After making a good run to Portland island, we encountered rough weather, and on Sunday, while under close reefed mainsail and foresail, a terrific sea struck her amidships, throwing her on her beam end, carrying away the masts, the deck load, the boat the galley, chain-locker, and every thing on deck, and worse than all the helmsman, W. Gooban, was washed overboard. We had no alternative but to leave the poor fellow to his fate. He struggled hard for his life, and shouted vigorously for help, but we could only see him die, for our boat was gone. For the rest of that day and on Monday the weather was rough, and the sea so heavy, that we could do nothing. On Tuesday the weather moderated sufficiently to allow us to rig up jurymasts, made of pieces of scantling which we had on board, and. as all our sails and gear had gone overboard, we made the best shift we could with tarpaulins blankets, and moleskin trousers, for sails. We shaped our course for Poverty Bay, but owing to the want of gear, and light winds prevailing, made very little headway. On August 23, the brig Clematis came up with us, and furnished us with a sail, which materially improved our position. We then shaped our course for Auckland, and on Thursday last fell in with the Pretty Jane, the captain of which vessel at once agreed to tow the schooner into Poverty Bay. We had plenty of provisions on board, but the fresh water was running short at the time we met with such timely aid. Our deck load consisted of 6000 feet of timber, which, together with 60 fathoms of chain cable, and the gear above mentioned, were all washed away. Captain McDonald speaks in the highest terms of the kindness of the captain of the Pretty Jane. The Acadia was insured for £900 the vessel and cargo are valued at £1500. At the investigation held by the Customs authorities yesterday, the facts adduced were mainly as above. In Captain McDonald's evidence, it appears that he held no certificate of service, and had never previously been in charge of any seagoing vessel. The cargo was uninsured, the vessel was insured as stated, and held, on the following proportions D. H. McKenzie, 50 shares Captain McDonald, 14 shares. The. following is a list of the crew on board the Acadia at the time of her disaster D. McDonald, master J. G. Thompson, mate; C. Smith, A.B. W. Howley, cook W. Goodban, A.B. (drowned). We learn that the Acadia is to be refitted at this port the spars, sails, and every other requisite will be obtained from Auckland, and in all probability she will be ready for sea in about three weeks time. Her cargo of timber has been sold to Mr J. R Morran, and Captain McDonald will probably load up with a cargo of timber from the Makauri Mills for Lyttelton. - New Zealand Herald.

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