Thursday, August 8, 2013

24 August 1859

24th. We had fair weather this morning with a little sun. The wind moderate and the sea swelling very much. A counsel was held this morning before the Captain and saloon passengers. The mutinous seamen appeared before them but I cannot hear that any was humbled on account of the previous conduct. Drunkenness on land is bad but it is worse here where we have not a civil power either for our protection or for the restraint and punishment of those whose furious conduct as made them a terror to the ship. Anything on board is manageable except the drink. It is always in fault. It as been foremost and generally the sole cause of disturbance since we came on board the Tornado. Sometimes it gets in the captain's head and they say he forgets that this is a three masted ship and he becomes as nasty and awkward a piece of humanity as we would wish to see anywhere. We have have also seen this drink dispossess a woman of all that is womanly and she would begin to talk without bidding would not give over with and say anything but what was prudent and becoming. Every one was low lived and dirty and wrong but herself but poor soul she could not discern her own depth in the mire. She would work like a slave and drink like a fool and then curse and rave like a demon.
Booth, Thomas. Papers, 1857 - 1859. Auckland War Memorial Museum Library. MS 2002/56

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