[p. 67] fur trade was the brig Charon, two hundred and thirty-eight tons, built in 1890 for P. P. Jackson of Boston by T. Magoun. In 1811, in command of Captain Whittemore, she is mentioned as one of the hunting craft, which carried north eighteen hundred skins and was found at the Farallones the next year.1 The Northwest fur trade was extremely dangerous in the early days. In 1800 the captain of the ship Globe was killed by the Indians. The next year, the officers of the ship Boston and all but two of the crew were killed by the natives at Nootka sound. The vessel was afterwards accidentally burned. A few years later the captain, officers and many of the men of the ship Atahualpa were killed by the Indians at Millbank sound.2 ‘Seldom, indeed, did a vessel from the United States complete her voyage in that ocean without losing some part of her crew by the treachery of those with whom they were dealing.’3 The dangers, also, from pirates on the China coast were great. On the evening of August 22, 1809, Capt. William Sturgis anchored in Macao roads. Early the next morning he sent a boat with his first officer and four seamen ashore for a pilot to take his ship up the river to Canton, leaving but ten men on board. Hardly had they started, than the vessel was furiously attacked by a fleet of twenty-one pirate junks manned by two thousand men and led by the admiral's junk itself of twenty-eight guns. The pirates attempted to set fire to the ship but were unsuccessful. They then tried to board, but Captain Sturgis keeping up a hot fire from his six six-pounders, which did fearful execution, cut his cables and succeeded in setting some sail, by which he worked his way over under the guns of the fort.4
This text is part of:
Table of Contents:
Views of Medford .
Women of the Mayflower and Plymouth Colony.
Mr. Stetson 's notes on information wanted.
Old ships and ship-building days of Medford .
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