Page 21 - Wrecked on the Cheticamp Coast, 1823
ISSUE : Issue 26
Published by Ronald Caplan on 1980/8/1
painful necessity of leaving the cook, who had unfortunately had his leg broke, and in a very bad state, behind us;, we heard his heart-rending cries for a long time, and it was our intention, if we were so fortunate as to find a house, to send for him as soon as possible. In travelling on, we passed several trees that had been burnt, which gave us great heartening to go forward. We came to several high moun? tains, which we found very difficult to get up, being so close to the sea, and some of them nearly perpendicular, so that we had to pull ourselves up by the trees. The pilot...being the best on foot, always kept the lead, and picked out the best road for us. Night making its approach, we cut down branches of the trees to lie down on. We took a little of our raw pork, and each of us took a drink out of the kegs of wine and gin with our mouths, not having any thing else to drink out of. It still continuing to snow and blow very hard, I kept walking about all the night to keep my feet from freezing, and I sometimes fell down by the side of a tree, overpow? ered with sleep as I walked. Through the course of a long dreary night we took a little spirits; each bemoaning his hard fate. The pilot came and walked by me, when he persuaded me to lie down a little while, and I found myself very stiff when we got up., Nov. 25 .--Partaking of some raw pork and a little of the spirits, we began to travel up the mountains. Having to pull ourselves through the trees and bushes, we suffered for want of mittens: only Mr. Collinson had a pair of gloves amongst all our company. I cut part of the comfortable, which was round my neck, to wrap my hands in; others took pieces of their handker? chiefs, or pieces of old cloth. We saw no wild beasts, but discovered several of their foot marks, and scarce a bird was to be seen on the island. Towards meridian we had light airs and fine weather; we dir? ected our course down by the sea shore. We saw two ships becalmed and haul down to the northward, which made us all regret having left the wreck, as we knew there was no possible means of attracting their notice where we were situated, though we kept our eyes anxiously fixed upon them for a considerable time, supposing we might not live to see another ship pass that way; in short, such was our fatigue and absolute distress, that the meanest Indian hut was all I prayed for. We were obliged to go farther up the mountains, as there was no possiblity of getting along the sea shore. We partook of a little of the raw pork, our wine and spirits being quite exhausted, but we always found plen? ty of water.--My feet now began to swell prodigiously, so that I was obliged to cut my boots open to ease them.... Soon after this I found the blood coming through my stockings, occasioned by the intense frost; I also saw the blood stream? ing from the feet of Edward Taylor, and one of his toes turned very black. John Simpson's shoes were nearly worn off his feet, and in a very bad state. The master, Mr. Collinson, had on a pair of half boots, and it was with sorrow I observed that his pantaloons were much torn, and his knees scratched with making his way through the bushes; yet, in the midst of all this com? plicated distress, I never heard him com? plain. . . . We made down to the water side to see if we could discover the low land of Cheti? camp, but there was none to be seen, nor could we discover the smallest prospect of finding a house to put our heads in....We all agreed, and turned back. We had not travelled far, however, before Mr. Collin? son said to me, "Mr. Burrows, I am per? suaded we are doing very wrong in turning back, I am sure we cannot be far from the houses now." I with him was of opinion, that as we had got so far it was the best to go forward; as such, we turned our? selves about again, and travelled forward. We came to a run of water, and here we stopped and partook of the pork, but our company not being able to eat it, in con? sequence of being so faint, we kept a lit? tle of it in our mouths, and this served to keep us from drinking so much cold wa? ter. All our small stock of wine and spir? its being done, we were sore grieved, and I prayed earnestly to the Lord, in his great mercy, to conduct us to a house, or we soon must perish. We travelled on, but not the least prospect of finding one, and night coming on fast, we began to look for a place to rest in for the night, where the best shelter was to be found from the trees. We cut down the branches to lie on; it being so very cold, and so much snow falling from the trees upon us, made us tremble excessively, and shake all the night long, and earnestly pray to the Lord for the morning light.... Wednesday, Nov. 26.--As soon as day-light appeared, we began to proceed forward as before, but we were all very stiff and sore. My feet swelling yet more, I got Thomas Crompton to cut my boots open in several places; they were a pair of boots which I had to Davis' Straits for seven years, and being so hard, they would scarcely bend to my feet. My right hand being frozen, and the middle finger of my Isle Royale Beverages Limited Your aufhorized COCA-COLA boHi?r 564-8130 562-4439 24S Walton St. if4nef, N. S. Genuine Down East Hospitality Keddy' Motor Inn 600 King's Road, Sydney, N.S. Ph
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