Tales of Salvaging, Life-Saving & Smuggling 1850 -
THE ESSEX STANDARD - Friday 1 November 1850 - LOSS OF AN EMIGRANT SHIP ON THE GUNFLEET SANDS. On Saturday last, about two o’clock, the smack Eagle, Capt. Easter, arrived at Wivenhoe from sea, with about 40 emigrants, and the captain and mate of a vessel which had been wrecked on the above fatal sands. From the account given by the captain, it appears that the ill-fated vessel was the Johann Frederick, Capt. Whieting, of and from Bremen, about 305 tons burthen, bound to Charleston, South Carolina. She sailed from Bremen on Monday, the 21st ult., having on board about 160 emigrants, the majority being females. After leaving Bremen the weather became boisterous and hazy, so that it was impossible for the captain to take any observation; and at the time the vessel struck the Gunfleet Sand (which was on Thursday, at 10 o’clock p.m.) he considered that they were over on the French coast. The shock caused the greatest consternation among the emigrants, most of whom had just retired to their berths. During the night the vessel continued to strike heavily on the sand, the water gaining upon her considerably. Blue lights were burnt, with other indications of distress, in the hope of obtaining assistance, but none appeared. A great part of the ship’s spars were cut away to prevent the vessel falling on her broadside. At day break colours were hoisted on each of the masts as signals of distress; these were happily seen by the smacks Louisa, Benevolence, Mary, Eagle, and Elizabeth, who immediately proceeded towards the ship, when, having manned their respective boats, they, at the imminent risk of their own lives, passed through the breakers, and succeeded in getting alongside the vessel. Instant measures were taken to save the lives of the passengers and crew; about half the number were got on board the different smacks, with the intention of returning for the remainder, but, as the flood made, the wind and sea increased so much that it was considered impossible for a boat to get through the beakers. There were at least 100 persons still on board the wreck, as many of the smacks’ men had remained on board the vessel in order to make room in the boats for a greater number of the emigrants. During this trying period the vessel began to heel a great deal, the sea continually breaking passage over her decks; to prevent her falling over on her broadside the mainmast was cut away, and ropes secured across the decks for the emigrants to hold on, to prevent their being washed overboard. A few trunks, &c., belonging to the emigrants were got upon the deck, but they were almost immediately carried away by the waves, and the vessel filled to such an extent that the lives of all those on board were considered in the greatest jeopardy. Providentially at the turn of the tide the sea became less violent, and the smacks’ men renewed their exertions; as boats could not come alongside without incurring the greatest risk, they were kept at some little distance, and the emigrants drawn through the surf by means of ropes. In this way every life was preserved, the captain (who behaved admirably throughout) being the last to leave the vessel.
The greater portion of the emigrants were taken to Harwich by the smacks during Friday and Saturday, and about 40, as before stated, were landed at Wivenhoe in a most deplorable condition - hungry, wet, and cold. Mr. J.G. Chamberlain, agent to Lloyd’s, lost no time in providing for their comfort; the females were placed at Mr. Durrell’s, the Rose and Crown Inn; the men were lodged and fed by Mr. Chamberlain, where they remained until Monday, when they were conveyed to Colchester, and, by the kindness of the directors of the Eastern Counties Railway, forwarded to London free of expense to the care of the Bremen Consul.
Many of the unfortunate persons - men as well as women - lost everything except what they had on. Great credit is due to the smacks’ men for their united exertions in saving the lives of the poor emigrants, many of whom, if not all, would otherwise have met with a watery grave. It is hoped that the German Government will not suffer such exertions to go unrewarded, they not having risked their own lives only, but also their property, to save those of their fellow creatures.
Very soon after the passengers had been got off the vessel became a total wreck. She belonged to Messrs. Glogstein and Son, of Bremen, and, besides passengers, had a general cargo, valued at 2,000 dollars.
Messrs. Billingsley and Co., the Bremen vice-consuls at Harwich, paid every attention to the emigrants landed at that port. They remained at Harwich till Tuesday, when the Adonis steamer arrived from London to fetch them.”
THE SUFFOLK CHRONICLE - 13 August 1853 - “WRECK OF A COLCHESTER VESSEL. We regret to announce the loss of the schooner Amethyst, 100 tons burthen, belonging to Mr. Harris, shipowner, of East Donyland. This beautiful new first-class vessel which left Liverpool a few months since with a cargo to the West Indies, intending to bring home fruit, foundered on the rocks while outward bound, about 20 miles from Vera Cruz, but fortunately all the crew were saved. Captain Harris, son of the owner, despatched particulars of the melancholy catastrophe from Vera Cruz, dated 4th July last, which have just been received by his father. We understand the vessel is insured for about 1,500l., partly in the Colchester Ship Insurance Society.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 28 October 1853 - “SALVAGE CASES - The Anjer from Amsterdam to Batavia, having unshipped her rudder at the Longsand, and been taken to Sheerness by the smacks Atalanta and Prince of Orange, of Colchester, the owners and underwriters have we understand settled the claims of the salvors by paying to their solicitor, Mr. H.S. Goody, £500 for the services of the two smacks.- On Tuesday last John Bawtree, Esq., and J.W.E. Green, Esq., two of the county Magistrates, sat at the Cups Hotel, Colchester, for the purposes of deciding a salvage claim by the masters and crews of the smacks Good Agreement, Joseph, and Snowdrop, all of the Port of Colchester, for services rendered to the Neptune, of Norway, when in distress on the Whitaker Sand, on the night of the 18th inst. It appeared that the ship was bound from Hornesand for London, laden with timber, and had taken a Trinity pilot on board at Yarmouth, but, with the wind blowing hard from the S.S.E., she got ashore on the spit of the Whitaker. The three smacks went to her assistance, got her off the sands, conducted her by a very intricate channel round the Buxey Sand, and eventually brought her into the Colne. The ship and cargo were valued at £2290, and the salvors after asking a higher figure reduced their claim to £200, so as to bring the case within the jurisdiction of the local justices.- Prior to the case being called on Mr. Goody, who appears for the salvors, and Mr. Chamberlain, of Wivenhoe, agent for the owners and underwriters, retired to arrange the matter, which was eventually compromised at £147. 10.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 21 December 1853 - “COLCHESTER CASTLE - Dec.17. FURTHER SUMMONSES FOR CONCEALMENT OF WRECKAGE - [First case mentioned: Daniel Collison, master of the smack Benevolence, of East Donyland, Wm. Stiles, John Ames, and John Brown of the same vessel]... THIRD CASE- There were five similar informations against Ambrose Walford, of East Donyland, master of the smack Industry; Daniel Harvey, Henry Simons, Joseph Talbot, and Isaac Ellis, for concealing a barometer, some cut rigging, &c., of the value of £1, on the 9th of December.- Policeman Moffat proved serving the summonses at the defendants’ houses, but said all the men were at sea.- Under these circumstances the hearing of the case was adjourned till next Saturday.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 30 December 1853 - “COLCHESTER CASTLE.- Dec.24. THIRD CASE OF CONCEALEMNT OF WRECKAGE - In reference to the information against Ambrose Walford, of Rowhedge, and five of the crew of the smack Industry (the hearing of which was adjourned from the previous Bench, upon the supposition that being at sea, they might not have heard the summons), Mr. Neck, who appeared for the prosecution, said there was ample time for the friends of the parties to have communicated with them, and, as the forfeiture was small, perhaps the Bench would think it right to deal with the case in their absence.- In reply to the Bench, Mr. Chamberlain said the parties were cruising in the Swin, but as there were constantly smacks going out there intimations might have been sent to them.- The Chairman thought where partied did not appear to a summons the preferable course was to bring them up by warrant.- Mr. Neck said he was quite prepared to take that course; and made application for the warrant, which was granted.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 4 January 1854 - “COLCHESTER CASTLE - Saturday Dec. 31st. Before T. L. Ewan Esq., Chairman; J. Bawtree, Esq., E. Brett, Esq., and C. H. Hawkins, Esq.- Another Case of Concealment of Wreckage - Ambrose Walford, of East Donyland, master of the smack Industry; Henry Simons, Daniel Harvey, and Joseph Talbot, mariners; and Isaac Ellis, apprentice (who it will be recollected did not appear to the summons on the previous Bench day), were brought up under a warrant, charged upon information laid by Mr. Raggett, Comptroller of Customs, with concealing on the 9th of December a barometer, cabin lamp, some spun yarn, and cut rigging, of the value of £1, salved from a wreck, whereby they had forfeited double the value of the goods and a penalty not exceeding £100. The information against the boy Ellis was withdrawn.
Mr. Neck, as before, appeared in support of the information; and Mr. Goody for the defendants.
Mr. Goody said before the case was gone into he wished to remove the impression which the Bench were probably labouring under, that proper respect had not been paid in their summons - a point which he should be also satisfactorily to explain. The men had been at sea ever since the summonses were issued, and were not aware that they were to be charged with this offence until so informed by the smack Eagle, on Friday, the 23rd. They at once prepared to return; but, from the violent gale blowing the smack split her foresail and was not able to reach the port till late on Saturday afternoon. With regard to the information itself, two of the defendants, Walford and Talbot, belonged to the smack Industry, and he should advise them to plead guilty to the charge; but the others, as he should be in a condition to prove, were utterly innocent, they having been merely taken on board from their own smack, the Elizabeth, which had proceeded to London with a schooner, on which salvage services had been rendered in the Black Deeps. This was some days after the wreck of the vessel to which these stores belonged, and the Elizabeth had duly reported everything which she had picked up from it. The only excuse which Walford and Turner (sic) had to offer was the small value of the articles; but with regard to the others, they were entirely ignorant of any wreckage being on board.
Mr. Neck said he could not entirely adopt the appeal made on the part of the prosecution because he was informed that it was a frequent practice with these smacks to change hands; and as the men he believed joined in the denial that there was any wreckage on board they were clearly particeps criminis, and had as guilty a knowledge as the other defendants.
The Chairman said if the statement made by Mr. Goody had been admitted by the prosecutors or borne out by evidence, the Bench would have been happy to have released the parties named, but instead of that admission it was insinuated that smacks were in the habit of exchanging hands with a view to deceive the officers. The parties must therefore plead guilty or not guilty.
Mr. Goody said it was due to Mr. Heath(?) that he should deny that insinuation as regarded his vessel and crew. He would appeal to Mr. Chamberlain whether it was not a fact that the Elizabeth had previously made a report of stores picked up from the wreck.
Mr. Chamberlain said it was true that some stores had been reported, but he could not go to the extent which Mr. Goody suggested.
Mr. Goody said he should be sorry to do anything that looked like flying in the face of the authorities; and rather than occupy the time of the Magistrates further he would advise all the parties to plead guilty.
The Chairman said the matter might be put to very strong proof by calling one of the Revenue officers. If these parties took upon themselves to answer that there was nothing of the kind on board he would infer that they were guilty, because their simple course would have been to have said - “We do not belong to the ship, and know nothing about the matter.”
Mr. Neck said, with submission to the Bench, the men having pleaded guilty, he did not think it desirable to go into the evidence.
The Chairman, You think the old adage may be true in this matter - “Least said, soonest mended.”
Mr. Neck wished to mention, publicly, as a caution to smacksmen, that the Receiver and Comptroller (Mr. Chamberlain and Mr. Raggett) were determined in future to prosecute in all these matters very strictly.
After some further discussion between the legal gentlemen, whether each defendant should be fined double the value of the goods found, or whether the £2 should be divided.
The Chairman thought as this was one of a series of cases they must deal with it in the principle adopted with regard to the others, and divide that portion of the penalty, but the amount of fine in addition was in the discretion of the Bench. Addressing the defendants, he and the Court adjudged each of them to pay 30s., including 6s. fine and 14s. costs, which was very lenient treatment compared with what they had made themselves liable to. With regard to their being brought up by warrant he advised that course in the first place, because although the law gave the power he did not like to convict in their absence, in the second place, because he wished to have the opportunity of saying something to them personally, and so that they could give any explanation it might be in their power to offer. They might, probably, have heard or read the observations addressed to the parties summoned on a former occasion, and he wished to repeat that for the future they should not allow these cases to be passed over so leniently. The allowance of one-third the value of any goods they might pick up he thought very good pay; and they might depend it was much better to earn one shilling honestly than 4 or 5 times the amount by doing what was wrong. If a neighbour’s house was on fire and they were able to rescue some of the goods they would not think themselves entitled to keep them; and a wreck was a very similar case. To appropriate such goods, however they might have been accustomed to look differently upon it, was nothing more nor less than a robbery in usual point of view; and although the law did not make the act a felony, it nevertheless visited it with severe penalties, and he was glad his brother Magistrates agreed with him in the determination not to pass over future cases of the kind in the superficial way they had been in the recent instances brought before them. The captains especially would be severely dealt with, because they were the most responsible parties and ought to set a good example to those under them.
Mr. Bawtree expressed his concurrence in the views of the Chairman.
The fines, &c., were paid.
There was no other business before the Bench.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 23 June 1854 - “SALVAGE QUESTION.- Henry Crickmore and others v. Henry Powell, East Donyland.- This was an action to recover £7.17.9. claimed by the plaintiffs as their share of the salvaging of a Dutch vessel, the plaintiffs and defendants all being smacksmen of the above place. There was another action by the plaintiffs for the same amount against a mariner called Ponder. This case appeared to create considerable interest among the seafaring population of Rowhedge, a large number of whom - both sailors and their wives - were in Court.- Mr. Jones appeared for the plaintiffs, Mr. Goody for the defendant Powell.- Mr. Jones, in opening the plaintiffs’ case, observed that the plaintiffs were the owner, master, and crew of the Blue Eyed Maid smack of this port; the defendant Powell was master of the Gipsy; and Ponder, the other defendant, was one of the crew of the Prince of Orange; and the present claim arose in consequence of the salvage money in which all parties were alike interested, having been paid to the former. The three vessels went into partnership as it was customary for them to do, agreeing to share their earnings, whatever they might be, whether derived from fishing, salvage, or any other source. The master of the Blue Eyed Maid, in February, received directions from the masters of the other two vessels to keep within the Swin; while it was arranged that the others - the Gipsy and the Prince of Orange, were to go sweeping higher up the channel. The two latter, following out this arrangement, fell in with a Dutch vessel, the Hendrika Jantina, which they saved, and received a total sum of £296 salvage, which the defendants of course now claimed their share of, though actually absent at the salvage.- Mr. Goody here interposed, observing that, although concerned for the defendant, Powell his client was really anxious that these parties should recover; but an important legal question was involved in the matter which it was necessary should be settled; and there were a large number of smacksmen interested in the decision of it. The smacksmen had no doubt been in the habit of contracting partnership in this way, and, until a question was raised upon the understanding, had always been honourably observed. The question he referred to had been raised at Rochford: it had been agreed to submit it to the opinion of Mr. Lloyd, who was of course a man of great experience in such matters. The law, as he (Mr. Goody) urged, was that in salvage a man could have no partner who was actually at the wreck.- His Honour said that a very different rule had certainly been observed at Southend. If it were a question of partnership it did not follow that all the partners must be present to entitle them to their share.- Mr. Jones said the Blue Eyed Maid claimed a share of the salvage, at which she was not present, and that he should contend was under an agreement to share everything by whichever of them taken.- Mr. Goody said he was afraid his view of the law was correct, and the reason of it was that it was against public policy to allow participation in salvage to smacks not present, because it was thought that the sailor would not risk his life in saving, when he knows that he has to share the booty with a number of partners not there. Mr. Goody repeated that if His Honour could take a different view in favour of the plaintiffs no one would be more glad than his client, the defendant.- Without going into evidence the facts of the case were admitted by Mr. Goody as proved, and the question of law was left for His Honour’s consideration, Mr. Goody giving him the cases upon which he relied in support of his opinion.- Ponder, the second defendant did not appear, being now at sea in the Margaret, of this port; but his wife, who attended for him, consented to abide the same result.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 14 July 1854 - “IMPORTANT SALVAGE QUESTION - Crickmar and others v. Powell.- In this case the action had been brought for £7.17.9. the plaintiff a share in the salvage of a vessel. The plaintiff, defendant, and others, it may be remembered, were smacksmen, and, as is customary with them, had agreed to divide their earnings whether derived from fishing, salvage, or otherwise. At the last Court the facts had been admitted by Mr. Goody, who then appeared for Powell, and judgment was entered against him, and also against a second defendant Ponder, subject to a point of law, viz., whether the agreement into which the parties had entered was a legal one, so as to entitle them to share money earned at salvage, except where all the partnership vessels were actually present at the wreck.- Mr. Jones again appeared for the plaintiffs; but Mr. Philbrick on this occasion represented the defendants.- Mr. Philbrick being under the erroneous impression that judgment had not been given, and that the point of law remained for argument today, his Honour suggested that the case should be heard in the nature of a motion for new trial.- Mr. Jones consented to waive the usual notice of motion, provided Mr. Philbrick would give him the grounds upon which it was based.- Mr. Philbrick said the ground of the motion would be that the agreement was void.- The question, he observed, was one of great importance, affecting a large body of persons. The action was brought by the plaintiffs to recover a share of money received by the defendants on account of the salvage of a vessel. Now the intention of all the statutes giving rewards to parties engaged in salvage was, that those rewards should be for services actually rendered by the claimants to the ship in distress, they being present and taking part in the salvage. That was the general policy of the law; and therefore, if, as in this case, parties agreed to share their earnings, whether present at the salvage or not, such an agreement would be in contravention of that policy, and therefore not to be upheld. The Judge at a Court of Admiralty had, in his judgment upon a salvage case in February 1843, condemned such agreements as repugnant to public policy and highly injurious, as taking away from the actual salvors the motives to enterprise and energy, where they had to share the proceeds of an enterprise upon which they risked their lives. Mr. Philbrick quoted the 7th and 8th Vic. and the 13th and 14th Vic., the Merchant Seamen’s Act, the latter of which enacted that in case of any stipulation by which any seaman consented to abandon his right to wages or earnings, any such abandonment of his right should be wholly inoperative. This, he contended, was in the same spirit as the judgment he had referred to in the Court of Admiralty, and that the Merchant Seamen’s Act of 1850 had been framed to prevent the mischief which was calculated to arise from such agreements. It had been indeed against the whole policy of the law to sanction an agreement such as these parties had entered into; and he submitted that upon the principle laid down in the Court of Admiralty it could not be upheld.- Mr. Jones, in behalf of the plaintiffs, observed that the only point upon which he could agree with his friend was in the important character he had given to the question, for if this practice of partnership were interfered with, the effect must be to almost annihilate these little fishing villages, and reduce the greater part of its smacksmen to beggary. He submitted that the Merchant Seamen’s Act referred to was never intended to apply to a case of this kind; but referred only to an agreement supposed to be entered into by the seamen at the time they were hired. It clearly referred to agreements between the owners of vessels and crews who were about to sail in them; and in the case of the present agreement he submitted that the plaintiffs never abandoned nor thought of abandoning or foregoing any right. With regard to the judgment of the Court of Admiralty in the case of the Louisa, in 1843, he reminded his Honour that the Admiralty Court was not a court of law, and therefore a decision there could not bring with it any weight upon a point of law. Mr. Jones was pursuing his argument, when he was stopped by an intimation from his Honour, who, after dwelling upon the terms of the several acts of Parliament, was of opinion that they did not apply to such an agreement as the present. He thought the case of the Louisa was not parallel with the present one, and he could not see that it was either against the law or public policy that three boats, being employed fishing in different places, should divide their earnings where one portion of the partnership happened to be called into a more profitable trade - a trade at the same time very serviceable, and one which ought to be encouraged, viz., in saving the lives and property of their fellow creatures when wrecked. He therefore refused the motion for a new trial.- Mr. Jones applied for attorney’s fee for opposing the motion, which was granted.- In the case of Ponder, the defendant in the second action, the money had not been recovered under the judgment, and his Honour said he could not allow the motion. It was therefore struck out.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 11 October 1854 - “SALVAGE DIVISION.- Henry Crickmar, Wardley, and others v. William Watson.- This was another of the several actions brought to recover the sum of £7.17.9., the plaintiff’s share of money received for the salvage of the Dutch vessel Hendrika Jantina (sic, Justina). The circumstances under which the plaintiffs claimed partnership with the salvage smacks engaged have already been more than once before the public; and the claim was strenuously resisted by those who have received their share in the division.- Mr. Jones appeared for the plaintiff; Mr. Philbrick for the defendant.- Mr. Jones again explained that the plaintiffs were the master, owner, and crew of the Blue-eyed Maid, and the defendant Watson was sued as a mariner on board the Prince of Orange, both of this port. The plaintiffs claimed their share of the sum of £286.5. paid to the Prince of Orange and the Gypsey, for the salvage of the Dutch vessel Hendrika Jantina. In October last the plaintiffs made a bargain with the master, owner, and crew of the Prince of Orange to share whatever they earned, whether by salvage, sweeping, or otherwise; and in the February following a third vessel, the Gypsey, was taken into the partnership. The Blue-eyed Maid received directions to remain in the lower part of the Swin, while the other two went higher up the river. While thus together the Prince of Orange and the Gypsey fell in with this Dutch vessel in distress; and they, being the actual parties engaged in the salvage, had received the amount above named from Mr. H.S. Goody, to whom the division was entrusted. At the division of the money the plaintiffs also attended to receive their share, but the defendant and his companions acted upon the principle that “Those should take who have the power, And those should keep who can;” and taking all the money themselves, they left the unfortunate plaintiffs to pursue the present troublesome remedy. Since this time the Blue-eyed Maid had picked up some timber, and articles of not much value, and in the division of that the three smacks had shared; which, he submitted, was the strongest proof of partnership.- Evidence was then given by Mr. Goody as to the amount of salvage money divided; and by witnesses on both sides as to the partnership which existed. The evidence of the latter was confused, and of no public interest in detail. It was proved by William Wardley, the master of the Prince of Orange, that the vessel and the Blue-eyed Maid were, as before stated, in partnership, and that they subsequently took in the Gypsey. The defendant’s witnesses repudiated any connexion with the Blue-eyed Maid. The case occupied several hours, and His Honour, after hearing the evidence, said he had no doubt that there was a partnership between the three vessels; the Prince of Orange having made it, and the Gypsey subsequently ratified it; and that it was only an after-thought on the part of these men to refuse them their equal share in the salvage. He gave judgment for £7.12.8., the amount arranged.- In consequence of want of time to-day Mr. Philbrick is to move at the next court for an arrest of judgment, on the ground of the illegality of the partnership, as argued before the court on a former occasion. There are other cases pending the result.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 22 November 1854 - “COLCHESTER COUNTY COURT. Nov.20.- At the monthly sitting of this Court on Monday the business was slight, and was concluded before one o’clock. Geo. Frederick Levett v. Wm. Wadley, East Donyland.- In reference to this case (an action by the plaintiff to recover £11.9. the half share of the defendant’s son, who was lost whilst rendering salvage service to the Dutch vessel Hendrika Justina), which, it will be remembered, was adjourned by his Honour at the last Court for the purpose of considering a point raised by Mr. Philbrick, solicitor for the plaintiff, the Judge now said, that having well considered the Acts of Parliament upon the subject, he felt very decided that a verdict must be entered for the defendant.”
ALSO - “Henry Crickmore v. Thomas Ennew, mariners, East Donyland.- Action for £2.16.1.- Mr. Jones, for the plaintiff, said the case stood over from the last Court, when defendant admitted the debt in writing, but he had since claimed a set off. Plaintiff was now at sea, and under these circumstances he (Mr. Jones) felt that he should not be doing justice to him in his absence.- Defendant being sworn, admitted the previous acknowledgment of the debt to be in his hand-writing; and his Honour said he would give judgment for the plaintiff for the present claim; allowing Ennew the opportunity of entering an action for the set-off.- Mr. Jones said, if his client on his return home found defendant’s claim correct, it should be settled without further proceedings being taken.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 16 May 1855 - “COLCHESTER COUNTY COURT. 7 May.- Thomas Lay, smack-owner, v. Daniel Taylor, jun., mariner, of East Donyland.- An adjourned action for the balance of a partnership account.- Mr. Jones appeared for the plaintiff.- The parties had been concerned together in some salvage transactions in the smack Industry, of which plaintiff was the owner and defendant the master. The earnings of the vessel were to be divided into shares, and the present action was for a balance of £1. 13.1d., due to plaintiff.- The case, it will be remembered, stood over from the last Court to enable the parties to come to an arrangement. Each now produced an account in writing of the transaction, and, there still being a difference between them as to certain items, his Honour said the better way would be to enter a verdict for 13s. 7d., the amount admitted to be due, and refer the disputed sum to some friend for investigation, as it was impossible for him (the Judge) to come to a decision upon the matter as it at present stood. He would recommend that in future, before entering into such a transaction, an agreement should be drawn up in writing between the parties.- Mr. Willett was named as the referee: and in case the parties should not be able to effect a settlement it was arranged that a new trial be granted.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 29 June 1855 - “SALVAGE CASE - Yesterday (Thursday) a Salvage Court was held at the Cups Hotel, by G.H. Errington, Esq., and G.E. Tompson, Esq. county magistrates, to determine a claim for salvage services rendered to the galliot Roland by the masters and crews of the smacks Eagle, Prince of Orange, and Concord, all belonging to the port of Colchester, on the 20th inst., on the Essex coast.- Mr. Goody appeared as solicitor for the salvors; and Mr. W.A. Neck for the owners.- The case on the part of the salvors was that about 9 on the morning of the 20th of June, whilst riding under the Gunfleet sand, they observed a foreign vessel proceeding up Barrow Deeps. Seeing she was out of her course they went to her assistance; the crew were unable to speak English, but they so far welcomed the salvors as to hold out a rope for them, and threw a ½ pound of tobacco into the boat. When the first boat boarded her she was making for the Knock John of the Sunk and, the wind at the time blowing hard E.N.E., with a heavy sea. The smacksmen offered to take charge of the vessel, which the captain declined; they signalled him to alter his course to avoid the Knock, which he did; but in doing so steered for the Barrow Sand, upon which the vessel struck. The captain then took hold of the first smacksman, and gave him the helm; and as the wind would not allow of her backing off the salvors found their only alternative was to cross the sand. They accordingly steered her through a swatchway, known to those in the habit of navigating the locality, and after striking three times she got safe into the Swin. While steering her for the Maplin light, the Captain, who had become exceedingly excited after giving up the charge of the vessel, insisted upon again taking the helm. This was refused in the first instance, and a scuffle ensued, but eventually he was allowed to do so; and after ascertaining the destination of the vessel the smacksmen left on her entering the Thames. The claim for the services rendered was £150, the value of the ship and cargo being from £900 to £1,000.- On the part of the owners the Captain and mate, who were examined through an interpreter, both positively swore that the captain never gave up charge of the vessel; that he crossed the Barrow Sand without assistance, and that, in fact, the smacksmen were intruders. On cross-examination he admitted the gift of the tobacco; and that he afterwards provided tea for them; but alleged that he did so from fear, although at the time besides his own crew he had two Thames watermen on board. He also admitted that it was the first time he had ever been up the Swin, and that he had got out of his course, but repeated his assertion that he steered the vessel over the sand without any information from the smacksmen, and that she only struck once in crossing. The evidence being of such a conflicting character - the three smack-masters swearing one way and the captain and mate the other, the Magistrates, after a three hours’ sitting, adjourned the case to Monday next, in order that any additional evidence that could be got in the meantime on either side might be brought before them.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 7 July 1855 - “SALVAGE CASE - At the adjourned sitting, on Monday, upon a claimed £150 for services alleged to have been rendered to the galliot Roland, in the Barrow Deeps, by the smacks Eagle, Concord, and Prince of Orange, of Colchester, the only additional evidence was that of a man and boy, part of the galliot’s crew, called by Mr. Neck, which was similar to that of the captain taken on Thursday; after which Mr. Goody replied upon the case at considerable length.- Mr. Errington, in giving the decision of the Court, observed that the evidence was of so conflicting a nature that it had been with very considerable difficulty they had arrived at what they conceived to be the most satisfactory conclusion in their power. Masters of smacks on the Essex coast, which, it was notorious, was of an exceedingly dangerous nature, invariably boarded vessels which they saw deviating from their proper course, and the Magistrates were of opinion that this was the motive which these men had on this occasion. They considered that, although the labour in saving the vessel had not been very great, the men were entitled to some remuneration, and they had therefore resolved on awarding £50 to the salvors, with the expenses incurred in the case, amounting to £19.14.6.”
THE SUFFOLK CHRONICLE - 25 August 1855 - “TIMBER. MR. GEORGE TURNER Is instructed to SELL by AUCTION, on Thursday, August 30th, at 12 o’clock, at Daniell’s Wharf, Rowhedge, near Colchester. A LARGE AND VALUABLE CARGO OF DEALS, BATTENS, BOARDS, AND other Timber, in Lots, quite unreservedly.- Catalogues at the Offices, Providence Street, Ipswich.”
THE SUFFOLK CHRONICLE - “FROM THE LONDON GAZETTE - Friday, Jan. 4. 1856 - BANKRUPTS.- Henry Crickmar, East Donyland, Essex, shipowner.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 28 May 1856 - “At the County Magistrates’ Clerk’s Office, on Monday, John Tuddenham, of Donyland, was charged before T.J. Turner, Esq., with neglecting his work and refusing to proceed with the smack Joanna, Daniel Taylor master, on the 24th inst.- Remanded.”
THE SUFFOLK CHRONICLE - 15 November 1856 - “IMPORTANT SALE OF DEALS, EAST DONYLAND, Lying opposite the Brewery, near Colchester, On Friday, the 21st day of November, 1856, By Mr. W.K. Dawson, Auctioneer, For the benefit of the Consignees, Underwriters, & Salvors. Sale to commence at 11 o’clock.
1,662 DEALS of first quality, 11 by 3, and 9 by 3 inches, the whole will average 18 feet in length.
Salved from the Brig “TRENT,” of Shields, Allen, master, wrecked in the Swin, on her voyage from Archangel to London.
For the accommodation of Purchasers, they will be Sold in Lots of about 20.
The whole are lying very conveniently for Land or Water Carriage.
Catalogues may be had and further particulars known on application to John G. Chamberlain, Esq., Wivenhoe, Agent to the Consignees and Underwriters; or to the Auctioneer, St. Mary’s, Colchester.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 19 November 1865 - “WIVENHOE, Nov.12.- The schooner David, of Dundee, from Archangel for London, was totally wrecked yesterday on the Gunfleet Sand, near the light-house; crew saved and landed here by the smack Phoenix.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 26 December 1856 - “ADMIRALTY COURT.- Dec. 19. THE VIKIN - SALVAGE. This was an action brought by six fishing smacks to procure salvage reward for services rendered to the schooner Vikin on the 9th of June last. The smack Phoenix, while cruising in the North Sea for the purpose of assisting vessels in distress, seeing the schooner between the Kentish Knock and the Long Sand, with a signal flying for a pilot, made towards her. The master of the smack, assisted by the salvors, told the schooner’s master that he was not a pilot, and at the same time cautioned him that if he did not mind his ship would be ashore, as she was in a dangerous place. Shortly afterwards the schooner struck the Long Sand, when her master gave up the charge to the master of the Phoenix. The other smacks subsequently came up, and their services being engaged by carrying out a kedge anchor and heaving upon it, they succeeded in about an hour in getting her off, and afterwards conducted her to Harwich. The services lasted about seven hours. The value of the property saved was £2,400; the number of survivors 24. A tender was made of £100, which the salvors refused. On the part of the owners it was contended the schooner was exposed to no danger whatever.
Mr. Deane and Mr. Wambey were heard for the salvors; Dr. Addams and Dr. Twiss for the owners.
The learned Judge considered the tender ample , and therefore pronounced for it, and condemned the salvors in costs from the time it was made, the antecedent costs to be borne by each party.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 30 January 1857 - “HARWICH TOWN HALL. Jan.20 - SALVAGE CASE. A salvage case, under the provisions of the Merchant Shipping Act, was adjudicated before P.W. Freshfield and F. Hales, Esqrs.- Mr. Goody appeared for the salvors, viz., William Ponder, master, and four hands, belonging to the smack Jemima; Daniel James, and four hands, smack Beulah; William Gridley, master, and four hands, smack Good Agreement; Philip Cool, master, and four hands, smack Blue-eyed Maid; Joseph Talbot, master, and four hands, smack Elizabeth; Charles Crosby, master, and four hands, smack Running Rein; Reuben Howlin, master, and four hands, smack Eagle, all of Colchester: and Adam Pinner, master, and three hands, smack Agenoria, of Harwich. Mr. O.J. Williams appeared for the owners of the vessel.- The value of the vessel, with the remainder of her cargo (coke) and stores, was agreed, on the valuation of Mr. Taylor, Lloyd’s surveyor, Ipswich, to be taken at £1,300.- Mr. Goody, in introducing the case for the salvors, explained that various means had been used to bring the matter to a settlement. An arrangement had been made for an arbitration, which was afterwards refused by the owner, who sent instructions up that unless the salvors would agree to go before the Magistrates by bringing the demand to £200, the matter should go to Court; that consequently he had prepared for the Court, and an Admiralty warrant had been issued, the expenses incurred in consequence of the course pursued by the owner, which he complained of as unfair, as they were compelled either to bring their demand to £200 or go to Court, by which the men would be kept perhaps some months out of their money; and, that the men might have it in their pocket instead, the case had been brought here, and he hoped that the Magistrates would award the full sum of £200, as well as the costs that they had been put to, viz., £24.11.6.- The facts of the service appeared to be that the barque Robert Watson, of Sunderland, 380 tons burthen, laden with coke, bound to Carthagena, went ashore on the Long Sand on Saturday week, wind N.W., with a heavy swell of sea; and the smacks and crews before-mentioned were employed by the master, William Sheriff, to get her off, to do which they discharged a great part of her cargo overboard, and carried out anchors hove upon them; and, after these endeavours, which occupied two days and two nights, they succeeded, on Monday morning, in getting her afloat, and she was assisted into Harwich about two o’clock of that day. It appeared that the master, in making his report of the accident, stated that smacksmen, instead of carrying out a kedge anchor, as they did, should have run out the ship’s boat lower anchor, by which means the vessel might have been got afloat sooner. This report appeared in the Shipping Gazette, which Mr. Goody read in Court; and it was answered by the salvors evidence that, in consequence of the heavy sea, no boat could live with so large an anchor; and at the time they first went to her it was impossible, on the same account, to take a smack alongside the ship to take the anchor from her bows; but that it was done next tide, when the sea had gone down a little.- Mr. Williams, on the part of the owner, stated that, although an arrangement had been made by the parties here to go to arbitration, a telegraphic communication was received from the owner objecting to it, which was made known to Mr. Goody the same day, before he left Harwich; and, with reference to the service, an opinion was entertained that the salvors had not exhibited that alacrity to get the vessel afloat that might have been expected, but that there had been an evident desire to lengthen the services.- Depositions were then read and sworn to by Wm. Sheriff, the master; James Reid, mate; Richard Cumming, second mate; Wm. Hunt, carpenter; and Lewis Vanning, seaman. There appeared to be no material difference in the evidence of the salvors and the crew; the only difference appeared to be as to the mode of carrying out the services.- The Magistrates, after a short consultation, awarded to the salvors £180, and £6.6. costs.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - Supplement - Friday 6 February 1857 - “COLCHESTER CASTLE - Jan. 31. CONCEALING WRECKAGE - Philip Cook, master of the Blue-eyed Maid, of East Donyland, was charged with having on the 19th day of January unlawfully secreted certain wreckage, whereby he had incurred a penalty not exceeding £50.- Mr. A.W. Neck appeared in support of the charge, and Mr. Goody for the defendant.- Mr. Goody said his client threw himself upon the clemency of the Bench, and trusted that his previous good character would tend to mitigate the penalty.- Mr. Neck said Mr. Raggett, at whose instance the information was laid, was compelled to bring the case forward in consequence of directions from the Board of Trade; but he had no wish to press the case severely.- The Chairman said the Bench would only inflict the mitigated penalty of £5 and 17s. 6d. costs.- There were similar informations against the crew of the vessel of which Cook was master, and in consideration of their position as servants, they were fined 2s. 6d. and 17s. 6d. costs, viz., John Cheek, Robert James, John Green, George Rayner, Robert Wilkins, Isaac Rudlin - Informations had also been laid against George Cook, master of the smack Beulah, and the following crew - Henry Simons, Isaac Wakeling, John Dyer, and Henry Wisbey; and a plea of guilty having been taken, the penalty of £5 in the case of the master, and 2s. 6d. in that of the men, was ordered to be paid, together with the costs.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 13 February 1857 - “COLCHESTER TOWN HALL.- Feb.5.- “REWARDING SAVING LIFE.- The Board of Trade has granted £5 to the crew of the smack Orwell, of Colchester, (being £1 each for the five men employed), as an encouragement for the services rendered in saving the crew of the Pomona, of Hartlepool, which came in collision with the Zosteria, of Colchester, in the Swin, on the 10th November, 1856.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 27 March 1857 - “WRECK.- Last Friday morning, at four o’clock, the Hamburgh (sic) barque Phoenix, A.S.H. Wenatt master, from Hamburgh, bound for St. john’s, Newfoundland, laden with provisions, got on the Long Sand, beat off her rudder, and shortly afterwards filled with water. The crews of the smacks Running Rein and New Gipsey, of Colchester, at great risk of their own lives, the sea running very heavy, succeeded in saving the master and crew of the barque. The master and 12 of the crew were brought in here during the afternoon by the Running Rein; and the second mate, comprising the remainder of the crew, were left on board the New Gipsey, to watch the breaking up of the barque, and since taken to Colchester.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 15 May 1857 - “COLCHESTER CASTLE. 9 May 1857. SMUGGLING - John Aldridge and Wm. Aldridge, father and son, were charged with unlawfully conveying 4½ lbs. of tobacco and 3 quarts of brandy, on the 4th inst.- Mr. Raggett, Collector of Customs, conducted the complaint; Mr. Jones appeared for the elder defendant, and Mr. H. Goody for the younger.- Mr. John Christopher, tide surveyor, said on the day in question he went on board the smack Kate, of which the elder defendant was the master, and his son one of the crew. On asking for a clearance the master said while discharging oysters at Langstone, a creek near Portsmouth, a coast-guard officer came on board and told him that he did not give a clearance nor expect one.- John Tranham and Edward Wire, officers, spoke to finding in the cabin a quantity of Cavendish and Shag tobacco.- In reply to Mr. Goody, Mr. Christopher said the elder defendant told him he had particularly cautioned his son and the crew against concealing any contraband spirits or tobacco.- Mr. Raggett explained to the Bench that the officer, who was a coast-guard at Langstone, was not authorised to give a clearance, but the defendant ought to have gone to another port.- Mr. Jones submitted to the Bench that there was no case against his client, inasmuch as he was not aware of the concealment of the tobacco, or that he ought to have had a clearance from another port, and that the section under which the charge was laid authorised the officers to detain the defendants, and have them at once examined before a Justice of the Peace, which, in this instance, had not been done.- He called Chas. King who spoke to hearing the remark of the coast-guard officer, at Langstone.- Mr. Goody contended that the quantity found did not exceed that allowed, and that the defendant ought not to suffer for the ignorance of the officer at Langstone.- Mr. Havens thought it would be a hard thing to convict the defendants if they were misled by the officer.- The Chairman said the case was clearly proved against the defendants, and the Bench fined them £2.14.6., the value of the tobacco and spirits, and 7s. 6d. costs.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 3 June 1857 - “SALVAGE.- A Court held on Friday, at the Cups Hotel, by J. Bawtree, Esq., and W.R. Havens, Esq., for the purpose of awarding salvage to Capt. John Glover and the crew of the smack Liberty, of Colchester, for rescuing the captain and crew of the brig Sarah, of London, the property of Mr. J.T. Smith.- Mr. Goody appeared for the salvors; Mr. Philbrick for the owner.- It appeared that about day-break on the 6th January, the Sarah, which was bound from Sunderland to London, with coals, ran upon the Whitaker Sand, where she was seen by the captain of the Liberty, who, after the going down of the tide, boarded the vessel, when he found that the sea had completely broken over it, and that the longboat, which was then lowered, had been injured. The captain and crew, ten in number, got into the longboat, and were towed to the Liberty, when, there being no accommodation on board to keep the men, they at once proceeded to Wivenhoe, where he landed them. The vessel became a total wreck; but by other parties certain stores were saved to the value of £89, from which expenses were deducted and £17. 16. paid as salvage to those who had saved the stores, leaving £28.9.1. in the hands of Mr. Raggett, receiver of droits. Capt. Glover claimed £20; which the owner refused to pay.- Mr. Philbrick submitted that as the ship was totally lost the owner was not liable; but Mr. Goody pointed out that £52 was stated to be the value of the stores, which must be considered part of the ship.- Mr. Philbrick withdrew his objection, and addressed the Bench in mitigation of the amount of award, urging that the services rendered were not of so great a value as stated, as the long boat could have taken the crew ashore.- The Magistrates then consulted, and on the public being re-admitted the Chairman said the Bench considered the £20 claimed by the captain not too large a sum for the services rendered, and they consequently awarded that sum, with £8.9. costs altogether the exact amount in hand.”
SUFFOLK AND ESSEX FREE PRESS – 15 October 1857 – “At the castle, on Saturday (before T.L. Ewen, Esq., chairman: S.G. Cooke, and W.R. Havens, Esqrs.) – Henry and Samuel Wisbey, Wm. Mason, and John Blackall (sic), mariners, of East Donyland, were convicted of unlawfully secreting wreckage stores from a foreign vessel at Brightlingsea, on the 25th ult. It was urged, in mitigation, that defendants had contributed to the wants of the wrecked sailors of the foreign vessel. Henry Wisbey (who had been previously convicted) was fined 5l.; the others 1l. each.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 23 December 1857 - “SALVAGE CASE - On Friday J. Bawtree, Esq., T.J. Turner, Esq., and W.R. Havens, Esq., held a Court at the Three Cups Hotel, for the purpose of assessing the remuneration to be paid to Capt. Glover, of the smack Increase, of this port, for the salvage of the French schooner Folle, on the night of the 24th of November.- Mr. Goody appeared for the salvor, and Mr. J.G. Chamberlain for the Captain of the Folle.- It appeared from the opening statement of Mr. Goody, and an affidavit put in by the salvor, that the Folle ran on the north of the Sunk Sand, salvor’s vessel being on the south side. At daybreak, on the 25th, he proceeded on board with four of his men, and found the Captain alone, the crew having left in the boat. They got out an anchor and lightened the vessel. The crew came back about eleven o’clock, but the rudder having become unshipped the salvor was obliged to call in the assistance of the smack Snowdrop to tow it into the Colne. The vessel was laden with coals, and the salvor and his men got out nearly 30 tons to lighten the ship. The value of the vessel and cargo was stated to be £575, and the amount claimed by Capt. Glover was £200.- the sum offered by the other side being £75.- After hearing the case the Magistrates awarded the sum of £145 to Capt. Glover with £8.18.8 expenses of the reference.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 7 April 1858 - SALVAGE CASE - On Wednesday afternoon G.H. Errington, Esq., and W.R. Havens, Esq., sat as Commissioners to asses the amount to be awarded to the captain and crew of the Colchester smack New Gipsy, for the salvage of the French schooner Pere Etienne, of Nantes.- Mr. Goody appeared for the salvors; Mr. Surridge, from the office of O.J. Williams, Esq., of Harwich, represented the owners; and Messrs. Garrad attended as agents for Messrs. Hanbury, to whom the cargo belonged.- The Pere Etienne was bound for the port of Colchester, and had taken on board a pilot in the Downs, who, on Sunday morning, the 28th ult., had got the vessel to the Black Deeps, where it ran on the Sunk Sand. The master of the New Gipsy, Joseph Wade, went on board, and at high water the ship floated, when the pilot began to steer her towards the highest part of the Sands, where in all probability she would have become a total wreck. The salvor directed the pilot what course to steer, and the vessel was brought safely to Colchester, the pilot afterwards admitting that he was five miles out of his way.- The value of the vessel and cargo was by agreement set down as £1,500.- The Magistrates, having consulted awarded £75 as salvage and £9.2.2 expenses in connexion with the adjudication.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 30 December 1857 - “COLCHESTER CASTLE - Dec. 26. CONCEALMENT OF WRECKAGE. John Simons, master of the smack Ann Maria, of Rowhedge, and Henry Simons, John Bright, and William Wordley, crew of the same vessel, were charged with unlawfully secreting wreckage, contrary to the statute, on the 30th November, whereby they had severally rendered themselves liable to penalties not exceeding £50.
Mr. W. A. Neck appeared for Mr. Raggett, Receiver of Droits, and Mr. Goody for the defendants.
Henry Hawkins, extra-officer of Her Majesty’s Customs, said on the 30th ult. he saw the smack Ann Maria come in from sea, and approach the guard-boat. Witness boarded her and asked defendants if they had anything to report. They replied that they had nothing on board but firewood. He proceeded to rummage the vessel, and found the firewood was a spar or jib-boom, cut in pieces, and on rummaging a large bag of biscuits from the mouth of the bed cabin, he found the latter filled with pieces of cut rigging, partially wet. Underneath was some more, and in the aft bed cabin the main part of a large jib-sail, suited for a vessel of about 120 or 130 tons burden, while defendants’ smack was not above 20 tons. He found the remainder of the jib-sail in the forecastle, and on asking where the things came from, defendants said they did not know.
Mr. Raggett said the articles which he received from the last witness were certainly wreckage.
Mr. Goody contended that this was a case to which the 428th section of the Act of Parliament, under which defendants were summoned did not apply. That was a section which related to wreckage property unlawfully plundered from vessels. but in this case it was not pretended for a moment but that the defendants were lawfully in possession of the goods, and would have been entitled to salvage upon it. He could have urged, if they had been summoned under the salvage clause, section 450(?), that they were not bound to report wreckage at a guard boat.
Mr. Gower, as a nautical man, said they were compelled to report wreckage at the earliest opportunity, and keeping it longer would constitute a breach of the law.
Mr. Goody said there was necessity for him to contend that point here [as] defendants were summoned under the 428th section, which related to plundering vessels, and there had been nothing of the kind in this case.
The Court was then cleared, and on the re-admission of the public the Chairman announced that the Bench considered that the case had been established, and asked if either of the defendants had been previously convicted.
Mr. Raggett said Henry Simons was convicted of a similar offence in January last.
The Chairman fined John and Henry Simons 40s. each, and the others 20s. each and costs 9s.
Mr. Goody intimated his intention of availing himself of the requisition of a recent Act, enabling him to present a special case before the Court of Queen’s Bench, for the purpose of having this decision reviewed.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 5 May 1858 - “HARWICH - SALVAGE ADJUDICATION.- The case of the Unity, of Rye, J. Morley, was held on Thursday at the Three Cups Hotel, before the Mayor (J. Stephens, Esq.), and J. Patrick, Esq.- This vessel, coal-laden, got ashore on the Long Sand during a fog on the 26th inst., at 1.30 a.m., and was assisted off by the smacks Running Rein, of Colchester, and Celerity, of Harwich, the bower and kedge anchors being carried out and afterwards slipped from. She was about nine hours on the sand, and on coming off made very little water.- Mr. Wm. Fletcher, of Gravesend, appeared for the owner; and Mr. H.S. Goody, of Colchester, for the salvors. The justices awarded £90 to the salvors, with costs. The value of the ship and cargo was between £500 and £600.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 5 August 1859 - “SALVAGE CASE - The following salvage case was heard on Thursday (before John Bawtree, Esq., and W.R. Havens, Esq.), at the Cups Hotel:- Daniel James, master of the smack Beulah, of Colchester, and John Manning, master of the Celerity, of Harwich, claimed £200 for services rendered on the 18th July to the schooner Ajax, of Gefle, (Johann Nordenberg master), bound from Stettin to Bordeaux, with a cargo of timber and staves. The value of the ship was laid at £570 and that of the cargo £425.- Mr. H.S. Goody appeared for the salvors, Mr. E. Chapman, of Harwich, for the owners,- It appeared from the evidence adduced that on the 18th ult., as the salvors were in their smacks in the Swin on the look-out for ships in distress, they saw the Ajax run upon the “Knock John,” a dangerous part of the Sunk-sand. They boarded her as soon as they could, and, finding that she was heavily laden with immense baulks of timber, they suggested that these should be cut away so as to prevent the vessel going on her side. The captain assented to this, and the timbers by means of fastenings were formed into a raft and thrown overboard. Entertaining misgivings of the weather, they carried out an anchor and ninety fathoms of warp, and, by heaving upon the anchor, got the vessel into a swatchway known only to smacksmen, and by that means into the Barrow Deeps. The raft, however, beat so violently against the vessel’s side that it was obliged to be sent adrift; and the next morning, notwithstanding a violent tempest raging at the time, the ship leaking, and being obliged to anchor again, they brought the vessel safely into the Colne.- Mr. Chapman contended that though no doubt the ship was out of her course, and that she struck on the sand, the claimants were employed rather as pilots than as salvors, and therefore a very trifling reward would meet their services. The captain and crew of the Ajax were also of opinion that the crew of one smack only came on board. The cargo was of a description that could save itself, and therefore not like one of a perishable nature. Though prepared to admit that such men were worthy of reward, yet he contended that that reward should be only adequate to the services rendered.- Mr. Goody, in reply, pointed out that no attempt had been made on the other side to show that the parties in the schooner could have extricated themselves from the difficulty in which they were placed.- The Court awarded £100 and costs.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 24 August 1859 - “SALVAGE CASE - A Salvage Court was held on Friday afternoon (before T.J. Turner, Esq., and G.H. Errington, Esq.), to award compensation for services rendered to the brig Cuba, 145 tons (Weir, master), bound from Riga to London, with timber and spelter, by the smacks Five Brothers, Beulah, and Increase, of Colchester; and the Alma and Elizabeth, of Leigh.- Mr. Goody appeared for the salvors; Mr. Church for the owners.- The value of the ship was laid at £700; and the cargo at £854.- Mr. Goody, in stating the facts to the Court, said the Magistrates ought not to have been troubled to adjudicate in this case. The matter was agreed to be left to arbitration in London, and he (Mr. Goody) accordingly appointed as arbitrator on his side, and the arrangement was agreed to on behalf of the owners; but the under-writers (the property being insured) refused to accede to it, and wished it to go to the Admiralty Court; but this being the long recess, which would involve the matter being left over till February, he (Mr. Goody) was obliged to bring it before the present Court; and in doing so he was obliged to admit to a very great disadvantage, as the Act of Parliament would not allow him to ask for more than £200 for compensation. The facts were these; on the 11th instant the Cuba got into a swatch-way on the Maplin Sand, and the salvors offered their services. The captain refused to accept them till he could see what he could do himself. The wind, however, turned, and consequently shifted his position, and the tide receding left him on the sand at high-water mark; the captain then found he must have assistance, and accepted the services of the salvors. The brig had a very heavy deck load, which it was found necessary to lighten, and the timber was taken off and rafted together, and got on board the smack. Her bower anchor was then carried out and a warp fastened to one of the smacks, and about midnight they succeeded in heaving her off into deep water. The timber was again put on board the brig, and the understanding was that the matter should be left to arbitration in London.- These facts having been proved in evidence, Mr. Church contended that the services rendered were very slight, that they required no skill or judgment, and that there was no danger involved in their execution. He submitted that the men were only employed in labour, and that a small amount would amply compensate the salvors. He called Capt. Weir and Alan Macdonald, the mate, who swore that the salvors were only employed for their labour, and that on their first application a steam-tug had offered to take them off for £30; and they said they would do it for less.- Mr. Goody replied; and the Magistrates, after consulting, awarded £100 for compensation, and £15.9.4 costs.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 1 February 1860 - “ADMIRALTY COURT, JAN. 26. (Before Dr. Lushington, Judge) - THE CUBA - SALVAGE. This was an appeal from the decision of two magistrates of the county of Essex, who had awarded to five smacks and 18 hands, who, in the month of August last, assisted the brig Cuba, laden with sleepers, off the Maplin Sand; their services extending from the middle of one day to the evening of the following one; a sum of £160, which was alleged by the appeal to be excessive.
Mr. V. Lushington appeared for the appellants, the owners of the Cuba; Dr. W. Samuel for the salvors.
The Court, in giving judgment, said that the sole question to be decided was whether the sum of £160 awarded by the magistrates was, with reference to the value of the ship and cargo, and with regard to the services performed, so exorbitant that the Court was bound to reverse the decree, and award the salvors a smaller sum. Upon the whole of the evidence it appeared that although the sum might be large as compared with the service rendered, yet it was not so extravagant that the Court ought to apply a correcting judgment, and therefore it was his duty to dismiss the appeal.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - “HARWICH - At the Town Hall, on the 20th February, a claim, made by the smacks Pheasant, Prince of Orange, and Scout, of Colchester, for services rendered to the Margriatha Elizabeth on the 20th of November last, was adjudicated; and the Magistrates awarded £200 and costs.- Mr. Goody, of Colchester, appeared for the salvors; Mr. Chapman for the schooner.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 4 July 1860 - “HARWICH - The barque Carolina, of Amsterdam, L. Struyk, commander, from Nieu Diep for West indies, with passengers and a general cargo, went ashore on the Longsand on Sunday week, and was assisted off and put into this port by the smacks Eagle, Qui Vive, and Laura, of Colchester.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 17 October 1860 - “SALVAGE CASE.- A special sitting of the County Magistrates was held on Tuesday, the 9th inst., at the Cups Hotel, Colchester - present, John Bawtree, Esq., and Geo. E. Tompson, Esq., to adjudicate upon the claims of the masters and crews of the smacks Industry, Qui Vive, Faith, and Concord, of Colchester, for salvage services rendered to the schooner Hoppet, of Norway, whilst in distress off the coast of Essex.- Mr. H.S. Goody appeared as the solicitor for the salvors; and Mr. Chapman, of Harwich (instructed by Mr. groom), for the owners.- The smacksmen deposed that early in the morning of Saturday, the 29th Sept., they observed the schooner making direct for the Gunfleet sands, the weather at the time being extremely bad; that they were unable for some time to reach her, but succeeded in preventing her from getting upon the Sand by waving a flag, and the schooner immediately steered away. She was fast making for the sunk sand, when the smacksmen boarded her; the captain was quite out of his course, being bound for a foreign port with a valuable cargo of iron, and he declined for some time to accept the services of the salvors; but, the weather becoming more boisterous, the smacksmen were employed to get him into harbour, which they succeeded in doing, and brought the schooner into safety at 9 o’clock that evening, near the guard-boat in the river Colne.- Mr. Chapman, in addressing the Court for the owners, contended that the services of the smacksmen were not of such importance as represented, but admitted that the captain had mistaken the lights upon the Sands; and he called the captain and mate of the schooner, who swore that the salvors had agreed to take them into the harbour for £10.- Mr. Goody having replied and re-called the smacksmen, who denied that any such arrangement had been made, the Magistrates, in deciding the case, said they considered that important services had been rendered, and awarded the salvors £100, together with costs.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 14 November 1860 - “BRIGHTLINGSEA, Nov.7.- The Swedish barque Caledonia, of Gothenburgh, bound for London, wood laden, got on the Gunfleet sands on the 5th instant, and is likely to become a total wreck. The crew were brought in by the smack Pheasant, of this port, and landed at Wivenhoe. A quantity of deals, &c., have been landed here, and placed in charge of Mr. Christopher, the deputy receiver of wreck at this place.”
THE ESSEX STANDARD - 30 November 1860 - “COUNTY MAGISTRATES’ SITTING.- Nov.24. ILLEGAL DETENTION OF WRECK.- Benjamin Dove, of East Donyland, master of the smack New Unity, appeared to an information by Mr. R. Raggett, Collector of Customs and Receiver of Wreck for the Port of Colchester, charging him with having on the 6th November neglected to deliver to the Receiver of Wreck 30 deal boards, of the value of £4, contrary to the provisions of the Merchant Shipping Act.- Mr. Neck appeared in behalf of the Crown, and Mr. Goody for the defendant.- Mr. Neck briefly narrated the facts of the case, and stated that the information was laid under the 450th section of the 17th and 18th Vict.- The Merchant Shipping Act, by the provisions of which any person, not being the owner, finding or taking possession of wreck was compelled to deliver it as soon as possible to the Receiver of Wreck; the penalty incurred for neglect of this being double the value of the articles detained, a fine not exceeding £100, and a forfeiture of the salvage money. He further informed the Bench that, acting on their recommendation at the hearing of a former case some time since, Mr. Raggett had caused to be circulated printed bills in Brightlingsea and other places, in which were given extracts from the Act to which he had referred, so that it could not be an excuse by mariners offending, as in this instance, that they were acting in ignorance of the obligations imposed upon them.- John Tranham, an officer of Customs, stationed at Brightlingsea, said he was in the habit of receiving wreckage at the Guard-boat, and alongside was placed a lighter for the purpose. On the 6th November he was engaged in rummaging a smack, when the smack New Unity came in from sea. She passed the Guard-boat without bringing to, and proceeded up the entrance of the river, and witness then gave chase in another boat, and in about half-an-hour came up with her, she having anchored. Witness boarded the smack, and found on board 30 deals in a wet state, and which exactly corresponded by the mark at the end with a quantity which had been brought in from a wreck on the Gunfleet Sands. The defendant was in charge of the smack, and witness asked him what he had on board, and he replied “Some deals,” and alleged as his reason for passing the Guard-boat that he could see no one on board. Witness asked him to take back the deals, but he said they were short of provisions and wanted to get up the river as soon as possible.- Cross-examined. No one was in the Guard-boat at the time the smack passed; the defendant told him the crew had had no provisions that day; the smack was anchored in the centre of the river, and there was no communication with the shore; the deals were not secreted. Defendant asked to be allowed to get provisions before depositing the deals on the Guard-boat, and witness allowed him till night to do so; would not swear that he did not extend the permission till the morning; might have done so, but did not remember it.- by Mr. Havens. The smack had furled her sails, and had, he believed, dropped her anchor, before he started in pursuit. The deals were in the hold.- Mr. Christopher, Deputy-Receiver of Wreckage, proved that the deals were not delivered till salved from the wreck on the Gunfleet.- Mr. Raggett spoke to an - [text jumbled up, may be a line missing] - the 7th inst., and that they corresponded with those which had been interview he had with the defendant and the owner of the smack on the previous Tuesday when the latter asked to let the defendant off. Witness told him he could not do so, and the defendant acknowledged that he had done wrong; and that as soon as he reached Rowhedge he informed his owner of what he had done. he said he could not rest about it; and before daylight the next morning he proceeded to Brightlingsea, and delivered up the property.- Mr. Goody addressed the Bench at some length for the defendant, contending that there was no intention on the part of the defendant to defraud the Customs, but that, being short of provisions, he was anxious to reach home as soon as possible. Had the officer insisted on his returning immediately he would have done so; but, according to the officer’s own statement, an indulgence was granted him; and therefore he continued his voyage. He also submitted that legally no offence had been committed; the Receiver resided at Colchester; and if the defendant chose he could deliver the property at that place.- Mr. Havens inquired if the Deputy-Receiver, or any one acting under him, was not the same, for the purposes of the Act, as the Receiver?- The Chairman entered into an explanation of the circumstances, under which they had recommended the circulation of bills, and said their object was that wreckage should be delivered at the first possible place. Certainly the bill might have been drawn up more explicit on that point.- Mr. Havens asked if Mr. Raggett pressed for a conviction?- Mr. Raggett said he was only acting under the orders of the Crown, and must do so; but doubtless a memorial to the Commissioners, if the defendant were convicted, would be attended to, and the penalty reduced.- Mr. Havens. But the officer in this case giving a qualified permission made the case, in his opinion, different.- Mr. Raggett said he did not press for a severe penalty, but that, considering the good conduct of the man, the Bench would deal as lenient as possible with him.- Mr. Havens still thought a conviction ought not to be pressed for; but Mr. Raggett assured the Bench that he had no option in the matter.- Mr. Havens said, technically speaking, no doubt an offence had been committed, but, looking at all the circumstances attending the case, he thought it would be a case of injustice to convict.- The Magistrates consulted, and the Chairman was about to announce their decision, when Mr. Havens said he wished to raise a question of jurisdiction. The worthy Magistrate on his left (Mr. Bacon), although he took the same view of the case as himself, had been absent during the delivery of a portion of the evidence; and he (Mr. Havens) wished to take the opinion of the Bench whether he had jurisdiction in the case.- Mr. Bacon said he merely left the Court for two or three minutes for the purpose of signing a document.- Mr. Havens wished to take the opinion of the Bench on the point. It was a case of summary jurisdiction; and the hearing of the evidence was most important.- Mr. Bacon felt quite capable, from what he had heard, of giving an opinion on the case; and he had no wish to have anything to do with what had occurred on previous occasions,- Mr. Gower. you do not wish the evidence to be re-opened?- Mr. Bacon replied in the negative.- Mr. Havens submitted that the Bench must decide this question by a majority.- The Chairman said the question was not raised by either of the parties.- Mr. Havens. I raise it.- The Chairman said the bench were equally divided on the case, and therefore the prosecution must fall to the ground, though he supposed he was entitled to give the casting vote.- Mr. Havens said the Chairman could only vote once.- The Chairman. i do not wish to do so if I could.- Mr. Gower remarked that an offence had clearly been committed, though it might not have been the intention of the defendant to commit it.- Mr. Havens. summum jus summa injuria.”
THE SUFFOLK CHRONICLE - 25 October 1862 - “SAD CATASTROPHE AT SEA. ELEVEN LIVES LOST. HARWICH, Friday.- A deep gloom has been thrown over our town this morning by the arrival of the dreadful news that 11 men employed upon a wreck at Goldwer’s Gatway, on the West Rocks, have been drowned whilst engaged in saving what property they were able from the wreck of the C.S.M. schooner, of Maldon.
It appears that on Wednesday, the C.S.M. got on the Gunfleet, and a smack was employed to get her off. This they succeeded in doing, but she subsequently got on the West Rocks, where she was abandoned. This morning, at low water, four smacks, the Koh-i-Noor of this port, the Cyrene and Ranger of Pin Mill, and smack belonging to Rowhedge, on the Colne, were engaged in stripping the stores from the wreck. Thirteen men were off at the wreck in the smacks’ boats, which were at the west side of the vessel, she having a “lust” to the east. When the flood tide began to make from the eastward, it ran with so great force that the wreck suddenly turned completely over on to the boats, upsetting or smashing them all, and in an instant all the men were floating in the water. They got clear of the wreck, but, notwithstanding the efforts of those who had been left on board the smacks, only three out of the thirteen were got on board the Cyrene; the others, ten in number, were all drowned. The three that had been got on board the Cyrene alive were utterly exhausted and one has since died, so that the total loss of life by this most melancholy accident is eleven. We have not been able to obtain a full list of those who lost their lives, but two named Clarke and Pilcher, belonging to this port, have left large families to deplore their loss. Several of the unfortunate men belonged to Pin Mill - indeed, we are told the greater proportion, there being two smacks from that place engaged at the wreck. These poor fellows all belonged to a class who put to sea at the most perilous times and risk their lives in saving their fellow creatures and their property from wrecks. Very few instances are recorded of loss of life among those daring men, but this has proved a melancholy exception, and one which will throw many families into mourning.”
ESSEX STANDARD - 18 December 1862 - Brig Thomas Rusbridge ashore. Three of the crew taken off by Thomas Barnard's New Unity. Brig floated , slipped cable and proceeded to London shorthanded.
To be continued.....