Sunday, January 31, 2010

January 31, 1820

January 31, 1820 - This day is also a season of rejoicing.  The voice of health contentment and praise, gives the cheerful response to the breeze of properity.  Peace without and peace within, while we are rapidly borne westward into the waters of the Pacific.  Lat. S 58° Lon. W. 68°.  The days are long, having about 17 hours sun, and the twilight continues through the short night, keeping along the Southern horizon.  At sunsetting the mercury stands at 46 Fahrenheit.  Though it is but little past midsummer here, it requires a winter dress to make us comfortably warm.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

January 30, 1820

January 30, 1820 -  Lord's Day. - This region of terror we find to be the place of our rejoicing.  No Sabbath, perhaps, since our embarkation has been more interesting or happy than this, or deserves a more grateful rememberance.  This day we double Cape Horn.  and write upon it "Ebenezar."  We enjoyed our meeting in the morning as usual.  At 4 P.M. as it was too cold and rough to meet on deck, we assembledd in the cabin and attended a public lecture by Br. B.  from I Sam. 7:12, in which after giving an exposition of the passage he endeavored to show the prevalence of the ancient practice of wording special favors, and perpetuationg their memory by significant names, grateful songs or monuments of praise.  2ly. The utility of the practice as it tends to promote gratitude; - to waken a sence of obligation when inclined to murmur; - to give comfort in adversity; - to promote confidence in God; - to increase the knowledge and the praise of God; - 3 ly That it is suitable and important that we should this day record the distinguishing goodness of our God to us and here erect our monument of praise.  The service was closed by singing the following original Hymn designed as our monument and entitled,

Jan. 30. Cape Horn. 1820.                                       1 Sam. 7.12.

1. With joyful hearts and grateful praise,
           our Helper, God, thy name we hail,
    Our Ebenezer here we raise,
           While round thy stormy Cape we sail.
2. Conducted by thy sovereign hand,
            Mysterious, mighty, wise and good,
   We left our friends and native land,
            To toss upon the raging flood.
3. Then adverse winds our course delayed
           And dangerous currents rolled below,
    Thy voice the roaring tempest stayed,
           And made the breeze propitious blow.
4. From want, from pestilence, and death,
          Defended by they gracious care,
    To thee we raise our tuneful breath
          Our Rock of Help forbids our fear.
5. This waymark in the trackless seas,
          Fixt by his hand who rules above,
    The tempests of six thousand years
          Have ne'er been able to remove.
6. So shall our grateful record stand,
           That, "Hither by thine aid we come"
    No will we trust thy constant hand
           To bring our souls in safety home.

Having thus publicly erected here our Ebenezer, of praise, as we hope, to the God of our Salvation, we desire forever hereafter to remember his signal and undeserved goodness.  We desire that the name of our divine Helper may be glorified by future navigators when they double this cape; by our Patrons and benefactors when employed in the same work; by our Patrons and benefactors when they see that their prayers are thus far answered, by the rising and future generations both in heathen and christian lands, when they look on the map of the world and remember that the first Christian Mission to the Sandwich Isles passed the dangerous region of Cape Horn, singing the praises of the God of Zion, for his smiles upon the enterprise and for his gracious assistance thus far.

January 29, 1820

January 29, 1820 - Soon after the last evening sacrifice, and at the very hour of prayer among our friends in our native land, the arm of the Lord was stretched forth for our help, and the winds began to blow favorably.  This morning we find with no small satisfaction, our loss speedily and entirely regained.  The unexpected appearance of the Cape cheers every heart and calls forth our praise and gratitude to him "whom winds and seas obey."

(12 o'clock) While looking out for the Island south of C. Horn, a sail heaves in sight, tossing like ourselves upon a rough sea, but on a different course, sometimes full in view, and sometimes entirely below the waves.  We trust she is American and most gladly would we send communications to our friends if possible.  (3 o'clock P.M.)  The sail discovered passed rapidly a few miles to the Southeast of us, and is out of sight, on her way doubtless to our native shores, where our friends and helpers dwell, and we hasten our march upon the mountain wave towards a foreign land.  The Brig sails nobly in these seas.  It was remarked by one of the mates, that no vessel was ever in better trim for passing the cape.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

January 28, 1820

January 28, 1820 - "The sea wrought and was tempestious" during the night, and the wind and current continued strong from th West during the day.  Too, the last 24 hours we have made nearly 2 degrees Easting, and 40 or 50 miles Southing.  The former is considered as a lose.  Our hearts were somewhat tried to be driven away from our course, and as it were from our object. just at the moment when we seemed to be turning the goal to bend our way toward the Northwest.  But though we had an almost sleepless night, and though the commotion of the elements continuous, we are not denied the comfort of a good degree of calm resignation, and unshaken confidence.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

January 27, 1820, 10 o'clock P.M.

January 27, 1820, 10 o'clock P.M. - At 8 this evening while our vessel was tossing upon the rising billows, her sails close furled, her decks washed with a heavy spray continually breaking over, and while a strong west wind from it roared through her rigging drifted her towards the South East, we assembled, as usual for evening prayers, read the 46th Psalm, and sung the 83rd hymn of the Select.,  acknowledged the good hand of our God upon us in his past undeserved favors, endeavored to lay ourselves peacefully at the feet of divine soverignty, and to implore the kind protection, the sure guidance, and the continued presence and blessing of his whose unfailing goodness constrained us unitedly and devoutly and joyfully to say "Hitherto hath the Lord helped us."  (Closed this interview with the 84th Select. H. Hothen).  Though even now his waves and his billows are going over us we have great cause for gratitude that we are now so far from land as to be comparatively free from danger.  This gale, had it been commissioned a few hours sooner might have dashed us on the rocks of Staten Land.  But the Captain of our Salvation is our pilot, and we will not fear.  "The Lord of Hosts is with us, the God of Jacob is our Refuge."

January 27, 1820

January 27, 1820 - 10 o'clock.  A.M. - With a fine morning, and a fair breeze which sprang up soon after last evening sacrifice, we find ourselves delivered from the dangers of Le Maire and rapidly and pleasantly advancing toward our turning point, the place of hope and fear.  (One o'clock)  While at the rate of 8 knots an hour, the Brig serenely cuts her way, the long looked for cape rises full in view and all our hearts leap for joy.  But in the midst of congratulations, which we gratefully acknowledge that our times and seasons are at the disposal of an allwise providence, it becomes us to rejoice with trembling lest we should not sufficiently glorify God.  (2 o'clock, P.M.)  The wind rises - dark clouds hover round. - the approach of a whirlwind is announced - all hands are ordered on deck - the sails are filled, - the dead lights in, - the companion way closed, and we are imprisoned below deck, - For a moment our Heavenly Father seems to hold the rod over us. (1/2 past 2 P.M.) The wind subsides - a gentle rain descends, - and light breaks in again.  We know that he who made Cape Horn, and placed it as a waymark which the tempests of 60 centuries have not been able to remove can conduct us around it in safety. - nor shall whirlwinds nor storms prevent us from erecting upon it, in the name Jehovah, the "Rock of our Help," the Ebanezer of the Owhyhean Mission. (3 o'clock, P.M.)  The wind rises again, - All hands are called.  The waves lift themselves up. - and our little trembling, tottering bark with its invaluable freight, yields to the opposing currents and lightly bends her course towards the South.  (4 o'clock, P.M.) The sun breaks out in the clear western sky, while the dark tempest, passing off to the East, bears down upon the waters of the Atlantic, and leaves us running briskly South, and the cape gradually sinks behind a pleasant sea. - (6 o'clock, P.M.)  A stiff breeze and heavy sea from the west. (1/2 past 6)  The sun shuts in behind the cloud.  A squall approaches. (7 o'clock, P.M.)  The sun breaks out again and smiles.  Thus rapid are our changes.  Thus transitory are our scenes, and thus fluctuating the joys and sorrows of mortal life.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

January 26, 1820

January 26, 1820 - Last night Capt. B. chose to lie by rather than proceed lest falling into the "straits" of Le Maire he should be becalmed in the night and drifted ashore.  We are now in the "Straits" of L.M. - Del Fuigo on our right and Staten Land on the left, on both of which among their towering rocks, we can discover banks of snow now in the midsummer.  We have a little hail today.  The mercury in our thermometer stands at 58 f          .   We entered the strait early in the morning with a fair wind which, however, subsided at 10 A.M. before we had quite passed through and we were carried back by the current 19 or 20 miles.  During this recess we were much interested by discovering two men kindling a fire on the beach.  Our attention was first attracted by the rising smoke; then by the help of our glasses, the men could be very distinctly seen.  But whether they were natives of the Island about their ordinary business, or endeavoring to attract our notice, or whether they were ship-wrecked mariners making the usual signal of distress, and imploring our aid, we could not tell.  Of what name or nation soever they may be, they have awakened our compassion, and were it in our power we would gladly extend to them the hand of kindness and the voice of consolation, and affectionately tell them that a Savior lives in heaven all powerful and gracious, who died for them, and who is ready to afford his aid, and if they will obey him, to give them eternal life and receive them from these tempest beaten shores to the peaceful mansions of heavenly rest.

Monday, January 25, 2010

January 25, 1820

January 25, 1820 - About 11 A.M. , one of the mates aloft cheered us with the grateful note of "Land ho!"  The smiles of joy and glow of animation appeared through our little circle, and at 1 P.M. our eyes were gratified with a full view of the North Eastern part of Terra Del Fuege, stretching along 6 miles or more on our right.  This is the first we have seen during three months, since our dear native shores receded from our view.  But alas, how unlike our beloved N. England.  Here no temples of the living God left their lofty spires to heaven in honor to him who of old laid the foundations of these snow-capt mountains, and weighed their rugged hills in his balance.  No joyful sound of the church-going bell invites the wretched inhabitants to the feast of the gospel. - No sun of righteousness softens their icy hearts, while they not only cover themselves with the skins but actually wear the nature of the wild beasts of the forests.  When we think of our highly favored country we are ready to exclaim, "We shaall never look upon its like again!"  But while we have occasion to weep over the wickedness of men who dwell in these dark and dreary wilds and contrast their condition with our countrymen, we remember with grief that even there are many thousands who derive no saving benefits from the gospel, thousands who obey not nor even hear a preached gospel, thousands whose ears are saluted from Sabbath to Sabbath with the sound of the inviting church bell, whose feet never enter the santuary of God to worship in his presence, and thousands more who seem to breathe the atmosphere of Christianity, inhale the contagion of death, and labor to obscure the glory and prevent the efficiency of the life-giving doctrines of the cross.  But we are comforted with assurance that many thousands there will not stumble nor rest until all our coutrymen, and all the inhabitants of America from the northern to this southern extremity, and all the dwellers in the sea shall enjoy the best means of grace and salvation.  Is it too much to hope that a stream from that benevolence now rising in the American church will soon roil through South America, carrying health and salvation even to the cold regions of Cape Horn.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

January 24, 1820

January 24, 1820 - no entry.

January 23, 1820

January 23, 1820 - Blessed with a peaceful and delightful day, with favorable seasons for worshiping God, and with the preaching of the everlasting gospel while coasting along the regions of Patagonia which are denied the blessings which we and our friends at home enjoy.  In a discourse from Amos 4.12. "Prepare to meet thy God." Bro. Thurston explained and enforced the duty of preparing to meet God in judgment.  We believe it was a word in season to our souls.

Friday, January 22, 2010

January 22, 1820

January 22, 1820 - no entry.

January 21, 1820

January 21, 1820 - no entry.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

January 20, 1820

January 20, 1820 - Another whalesman appeared but we had not the opportunity to her though we passed very near her.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

January 19, 1820

January 19, 1820 - Just obtained the first sounding since we left Boston, in 65 fathoms of water, off cape Helena.  Three vessels are now in sight.  Two of them appear like men-of-war and the third is a Brig.  Whether friends or foes we know not: but we are always gratified to see a sail, and when one appear we never fail to think of home. - P.M.  A huge spermaceti whale has just appeared and approached very near our Brig.  His head seemed to be covered in part with sea-shells.  After elevating the upper part of his head and monstrous back above the surface of the water repeatedly, and through the large orifices on the back part of the head, blowing up the briny spray, he descended and passed our stern, and after rising again to the surface, tossed his broad tail high into the air, and went down again to the chambers of the deep, thus he obeys the voice of God. - The maneuvering of the three vessels indicate that they are whalemen, probably English.

Monday, January 18, 2010

January 18, 1820

January 18, 1820 - no entry.

January 17, 1820

January 17, 1820 - no entry.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

January 16, 1820

January 16, 1820 - no entry.

January 15, 1820

January 15, 1820 - no entry.

January 14, 1820

January 14, 1820 - no entry.

January 13, 1820

January 13, 1820 - A school of whales appeared, extending along two miles, sporting and spouting and making the deep to boil like a pot.  Heavy gales from the S.W. have given several of the family severe colds.
Lat. 42

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

January 12, 1820

January 12, 1820 - no entry.

Lucia Ruggles Holman, a member of the pioneer company of missionaries, made the following entry in her personal journal, "Cold, stormy day, off the coast of Patagonia, opposite Cape St. Joseph's Lat. 42 -40.   Begin to feel the effects of C. Horn.

Cold. blustering winds and high seas which seem as if they would throw poor Thaddeus on her "beam-ends" as the sailors say.  Not unfrequently a sea takes her broadside, and breaking, overflows the whole deck, sweeping all before it - and one time came well-nigh taking our Captain overboard.  It might be called a hairbreadth escape.  The report is "like the thundering cannon of the day of judgment."

I sometimes feel a little afraid because there is danger of our masts being taken away- but generally feel composed, and as safe as on Terra-Firma.  He "who holds the seas in his fist and taketh up the Islands as a very small thing," can, and will surely protect all such as put their trust in him.

My health is better to-day than it has been in a month past.  I am consequently very happy - I have learned 6 sentences in Owhyhee, read 2 pages in the "Materia-Medica," written 3 pages in my journal, drank a toast with Capt. Blanchard, besides spending a half hour in idle chit-chat with Mr. Loomis about our want of room and convenient accommodations, as our neighbors have, our station being in the cabin where all the commotion and news of the day is passing.  I have accomplished all this since breakfast and is the greatest day's work done since I came on board.  Dined on baked pork and beans - nothing wanting but a good appetite and a thankful heart."

Journal of Lucia Ruggles Holman, reprinted by the Congregational Church of Brookfield Center, Connecticut in 1992.

Monday, January 11, 2010

January 11, 1820

January 11, 1820 - no entry.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

January 10, 1820

January 10, 1820 - no entry.

As our authors did not make a journal entry on this day, I thought it might be interesting to share a bit of  information about the ship on which the missionaries were sailing.  The Thaddeus was a brig.  This brig measured 85 feet 5 1/2 inches long, 24 feet 7 1/2 inches wide and 13 feet 2 inches deep.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

January 9, 1820

January 9, 1820 - We have been gratified today by the exhbition of some of the works of God in the mighty deep, particularly the appearance of several whales, the first we have seen, a shark, and a multitude of porpuses.  But the manifestation of divine favor to sinners, the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ is still more interesting.  This is a favored Sabbath.  The comfort and aid of the Spirit seem to have been enjoyed by the covenant people of God, in good measure.  The broad and benevolent design of Christ's kingdom: the certainty of its universal prevalence, and the duty of promoting its interests were set forth in a sermon from John 10, 16 by Brother Thurston.  After a tossing boistrous week the Lord of the Sabbath speaks peace to the winds and waves and peace to our souls.
Lat. S. 40.  Lon. W. 50

Friday, January 8, 2010

January 8, 1820

January 8, 1820 - no entry.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

January 7, 1820

January 7, 1820 - no entry.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

January 6, 1820

January 6, 1820 - no entry.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

January 5, 1820

January 5, 1820 - Last evening as we were retiring from prayers in the cabin, a tremendous sea broke over the stern of the vessel.  It disengaged a large coop filled with vegetables and bottles carrying it over the tiller or helm with such force as to beat off the boards from the opposite side of the Brig, and the next moment sending it back to the side from which it was first taken.  By the same sea Capt. Blanchard was almost instantaneously dashed twice across the quarter deck from side to side with considerable bruising and with manifest danger of being carried overboard.  Capt. Chamberlain had nearly reached the top of the stairs, and Mrs. Bingham who stood at the bottom, about to go on deck, both received a pretty heavy shock and showering from the torrent which poured down the companion way.  But the glorious and omnipotent arm of our Savior afforded kind and seasonable protection.  May our hearts be filled with adoring and unceacing gratitude to him,
   "Who rides upon the stormy skies
    and manages the seas."

January 4, 1820

January 4, 1820 - Off the mouth of the Rio De La Plate. - We are this morning experiencing a gale from the north.  The violence of the wind has split several of the sails.  We are now running under bare poles at the rate of 7 or 8 miles an hour.  We reel to and fro and stagger like a drunken man.  The tossing mountains around us skip like rams, and the hills like lambs.  The foaming surges lash the trembling sides of our little bark and drench her decks; while the rain like hail pelts the poor sailors as they cling to the whistling rigging and the spray of the sea sweeps over the surface like the driven snow on a northern winter's day.  But he who said to the raging tempest, "Peace be still," can and does afford us protection, and give us peace within.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

January 3, 1820

January 3, 1820 - Yesterday, "The Holy Rest," was in the morning somewhat disturbed by the catching of a large turtle, for which purpose it was necessary for the ship's company to let down a boat and spend considerable time  The afternoon was pleasant.  We had service on deck where a New Year's sermon was delivered by Brother Bingham from Luke 4, 19, "To preach the acceptable year of the Lord."  After an introduction and an explanation of the text, he endeavored to show that by a due regard to our sins.  our mercies, our engagements and our instructions of the past year, we might reasonably expect the New Year would be to us and to those with whom we may have intercourse, an acceptable year of the Lord.  Mrs. C. is threatened with a fever.
     This evening we have attempted to join with the Christian world in the great monthly concert of prayer for the prosperity of Zion, and the salvation of the Heathen.  A letter dated in Boston and signed A.G. containing an earnest request for our prayers in behalf of the writer when we should be far from her, also the farewell letter of Brother Cornelius to the mission, were read and made the foundation of some remarks with respect to the feeling which our American friends cherish towards us, and to our correspondent duties.

Friday, January 1, 2010

January 2, 1820

January 2, 1820 - no entry.

January 1, 1820

January 1, 1820 - This day we joyfully hail the New Year with the hope that it will be to ourselves and our friends and the church an acceptable year of the Lord, and to the Heathen nations, especially to the Sandwich Islands the year of Jubilee, of spiritual emancipation from sin after the gloom of servitude of Fifty Centuries. The day is exceedingly fair, and the family generally in health with the exception of slight indisposition in the case of Brothers Ruggles and Whitney.
Lat. 8, 32°, 30', Lon. W. 43°

December 30, 1819

December 30, 1819 - no entry.