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> Issue 18 > Page 14 - The Wreck of the "Auguste", 1761

Page 14 - The Wreck of the "Auguste", 1761

Published by Ronald Caplan on 1977/12/1 (399 reads)

after many attempts in making a fire. It was nearly time, for already the poor fel? lows could hardly move or talk. They would certainly have perished without assistance. The heat soon brought them round. The cap? tain, seemingly the most affected, came to himself and told me he was not at all sure of where we were, but that he thought us to be in the vicinity of Louisbourg. He gave himself entirely to my direction, and the confidence he seemed to have in me encour? aged me to carry on. We had been thrown ashore between two and three o'clock in the afternoon. Between five and six the ship went to piece's on the shore, and we beheld the distressing spec? tacle of lifeless bodies washed ashore, ll4 in all. We spent a night of great sadness. Our dis? may was so heavy that we could scarcely speak. Our utter exhaustion.should have put us to sleep, on the contrary we were not able to close an eye. On the morning of the l6th we went down to the beach, where we found the bodies of our unfortunate compan? ions in disaster. Some were naked, having doubtless thrown off their clothes the bet? ter to swim to safety. Others had legs and other limbs broken. We spent the day in giv? ing them what burial our desperate straits and our strength made possible. We decided we must leave this place where we had always before our eyes the spectacle of death. On the 17th, having gathered pro? visions strewn along the shore, we loaded ourselves with rations for eights days on? ly • all except the soldiers who, thinking themselves not too far from inhabited re? gions, took food for only three or four days. In spite*of our warnings, they load? ed themselves with useless articles that they had to throw away after three or four days. I did my best to convince them that I had had too much experience riot to fear the fatigue and hardship I could see lay in store for us. Obsessed with greed, they were deaf to all advice. neither where we were nor vrtiere we were go? ing. We travelled four days • over sheer cliffs whose hideous aspect dismayed us; through forests whose denseness frightened us; over rivers whose swiftness hindered our march; over mountains so difficult to climb that we lost all heart. On the 21st, as a crowning misfortune, snow covered the land. In spite of careful ra? tioning, our supplies were near depletion, and we were weakened by a journey so ardu? ous. Courage was at a low ebb, and three of the party, weakened by too little food and on their last legs from weariness, resolved to stay where they were. They preferred certain death to sufferings to which they could see no end. I was able by my exhortations, and by hopes that I held out to them that our ordeal would soon be ended, to get them going a- gain. We came on the 25th to Niganiche (Ingonish), where we found some small de? serted houses in which lay the bodies of two dead men. It seemed that bad luck would never weary of pursuing us. The man called Etienne fell sick of pleurisy. The only remedy I could think of was to bleed him, and I repeated 'the treatment six times during the night, using the point of a knife. I also made him sweat three times. By those hazardous meas? ures he was considerably relieved. He was too feeble, however, to continue the jour? ney .... He had to be left behind. Monier offered to stay, with him; he was by no means as sick as Etienne, but was at least as tired and discouraged. We left them on the 26th, after assuring them that at the first inhabited region we reached I would arrange for all necessary help to be sent to them, and that I would spare nothing in rescuing them. I left them about four pounds of flour, two cooked fowls, about a pound and a half of lard, and half a pound of broken biscuits. They had no pot for cooking, but they did have a silver goblet. We started off quite at random, for we knew During the night some_tejnL_or twelve inches SYDNEY SHIP SUPPLY cA*R??mer' Creed I believe a man's greatest posses? sion is his dignity and that no calling bestows this more abun? dantly than farming. I believe hard work and honest sweat are the building blocks of a person's character. Ibriieve that farming, despite its hardships and disappointments' is tbe most honest and honor- aUe way a man can sptnA his dajrs on this earth. I believe farming nurtures the doee family ties that make Itfe ridi In wmyt money can't buy. • . I believe my children are learning values that will last a lifetime and can be learned, in no other way. I believe farming provides educa? tion for life and that no; other occupation teaches so much about birth, growth and matu> rity in such a variety oi wmy% I l>elieve many of the best flings in life are indeed free: the splen? dor of a sunrise' dM rapture of wide open spaces, the exhilarat? ing sight of your land greening each spring; I believe true happiness comes from wfltddiig your crops ripen in tfie ft' your diildreB grow tan in ti?? soi' your wlMk lamp ily feel the pride that springs from their shared experience. I believe that by my toil I am giv- .ing more to the world than I am taking from it, an honor that does not come to all men.. I believe my life will be measured ultimately by what I have done for my fellowman, and by this standard I fear no judgment Ibelieve 'i'ien a man groivs oM and sums up his days, he should be able to stand tan and feel pride in the life he's lived. Ibelieve in farming because it makes aU diiis pos'de. Sydr'y arxl Port Hawkesbury
Cape Breton's Magazine
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