Tuesday 7 March went on board the Yorkshire 1,000 tons burthen for New Orleans.
8th 3 o'clock started from the Princess Pier with a fair wind & cloudless sky.
9th Head wind very rough - made no way. Saints all very sick
10th A dead calm - very mild. Saw several small birds.
11th At noon made 44 miles within the last 24 hours. At 4 p.m. spoke the Iris [UNCLEAR] of York from Orleans to Liverpool. Stiff breeze from southwest. [- - -] passed several vessels throughout the day and many small birds above.
12th Sunday - Strong breeze from southwest. At noon steering south, southeast at 42 knots an hour. No vessel in sight, sky clearing up. At late afternoon, close by Ireland. At sunset steering due south. Saw south of Ireland. 8 sail in sight & 1 lighthouse, a most splendid evening & at night administered sacrament to the [-]. Henry Rushton called to his [-] & and [SIC] while a brother was bearing his testimony [- - - ] & Rushton laid his hands on him and he died at 10 minutes to 10 on 12 March.
13. Sailing south, southeast. At 11 a.m. buried Henry Rushton in latitude [-] longitude [-]. Read the burial service and sang an hymn. Afternoon wet, at night rain & rough sea.
14th Sailing west, northwest. Sailing fair, afternoon dull & rain, a head wind.
15 - Steering south, still a head wind. At one p.m. off the Isle of Kinsale [Ireland] south side. Stiff breeze, even southwest, northwest.
16 Dull all day. Saw Ireland due north tacking south, southeast & [-]. At night a very stiff breeze. Saw several ships.
17 At m. [ABBREVIATION UNCLEAR, POSSIBLY mile] 8 saw Point Clear about 8 miles off tacked to south, southeast. At 4 p.m. tacked to west. Gentle breeze, afternoon delightful. Evening got rather dull. Steering all night southwest by west [p. 1].
Sat.18th All night & day steering right in direction of west by south. Strong breeze at 10 past 4 p.m. Spoke a schooner who hoisted No. "9.20." We hoisted aboard "11 40." Both carried the British colors even [-] sea. Saw a many porpoises.
Sunday 19 All day steering south, southwest. A delightful day, spray [-] decks. At 4 saw a schooner etc. Sacrament. Exhorted the Saints on the principles of the Bible.
20th At m. [UNCLEAR, PROBABLY mile] 8 tacked to the south. No sail [-] since Fri. evening. At m. 8 the wind [-] veered to the northwest. We tacked to the south. At 12 steering due south at 6 knots an hour. A vessel in sight, bright sun and good breeze. Wind very fresh 8 knots an hour. 4 o'clock, a squall came on sea, very rough. All afternoon watch south. A rainbow at the bow of the vessel, very beautiful to see it rise from the white [-] spray like a stream. [-] the bow before it also saw part of a rainbow in the zenith, circumstances I never saw before and at 4 the squall began. Close reefed the sails.
21st All night & day very strong breeze from northwest steering southwest by south. At 1 o'clock great part of the day going at 10 knots an hour. Night very rough.
22nd Still steering south, southwest til about 10 when the wind [-] changed. We veered to northwest by west. At 12 we were in latitude 44.52 north, longitude 19.10 west. Steer south at [-] knots an hour [-]. We have had head winds all the time [-] hour til Tuesday. Head wind again today.
23 A terrible stormy day. Sea ran mountains high, mountains roared. Spray like snow drifting up hills. Sea dashed over side of the vessel. At 10 at night an awful wave came over from [UNCLEAR, POSSIBLY windward] [-] came down hatchway and alarmed all the people very much. Smashed "the Bor" [UNCLEAR] to pieces. Vessel endeavoring to keep to the southwest. Wind [-] some of the waves 5 to 10 yards high.
24 Had a very stormy night. Vessel still hoisted to the south. Waves come very high and weigh and continued all day. At 9 in the morning saw another vessel buffeting the waves like ourselves, a dismal sight.
25 The wind settled down and rather a mild day. Saw a "Portugese man of war" fish at night. Clear evening. Waves still rather high, steering to the south [p. 2].
Wed. April 19 at break of day came in sight of the Island of Guadeloupe bearing south, southwest when there was a general rejoicing at once more beholding land. Sailing along its northern side could distinguish trees, windmills, sugar boilers &c. &c. Saw a many flying fish, several birds, & also a small vessel sailing towards the Island Guadalupe lies in latitude 16.30, longitude 67.30. There is a burning mountain which abounds with sulphur. The negroes who sell sulphur fetch it from the mountains. This island produces about 46 million pounds of sugar, 21 million of coffee, 300,000 of cotton &c. 45 miles long 38 broad. I saw clearly the smoke issuing from the top of the mountain which is in the highest at 5,500 feet above the level of the sea. The nearest was about 8 or 9 miles off. The cliffs were very rugged. We then came in sight of Antigua which is 20 miles broad & 20 long in circumference. While inhabitants 10,000 it raises at present 16,000 kegs heads of sugar. We are about 15 miles off, it appears to be in succession of small irregular hills. It is in [-] [64.0 west 17.30 north CROSSED OUT] One bird that I saw was really beautiful - long [-] wings. We came to the Island of Montserrat latitude 16.41 longitude 62.18 - is 9 miles long & as much in breadth. The mountains are covered with cedars & other trees. We passed within 10 miles off - the top of the mountain was enveloped in clouds & appears a very big mountainous island, particularly on the east. On the west it is more gently sloping & there [-] plantations on it [-] coffee or sugar - many trees. At 12 o'clock I saw a [-] which flew round & over the ship that it might have easily been shot. This day was a most delightful day not only on account of the joy at once more beholding land but also the pleasant breeze that accompanied us. We also saw the Rock [UNCLEAR, POSSIBLY Redondo] & the island of St. Christopher's which were at least 60 miles off. At 12 o'clock we were off Montserrat. St. Cruz 17.40 north 66.36 west.
20 In the morning I saw at a distance the Isle of St. Cruz. In even, I saw a many birds & flying fish.
21 Throughout the day saw a deal of moss &c floating by the vessel - caught a piece which was a great curiosity, also saw a many birds. A pleasant day (18 sails set at night [-] when I went to bed).
22 At 4 in eve Isle St. Domingo and gave the cheer cry of land when I was very sharply contradicted - but in a short time they were glad to allow that I was right - a very hot day and a blurry storm in sight.
23 Sunday in sight of land all day saw a small vessel of 250 tons which we soon passed - I was very merry to see a vessel in full sail - in even. I had sacrament. [-] of the day.
24 [-] of the way as well [-] 22nd. We were becalmed & on each night it freshened in the night . There was a very heavy fall of rain, by far the heaviest since we left England. At sunset it was really beautiful to see. Sun set in red - the clouds on the south brightly speckled [-] large clouds above the hills. In the day the sea was as still as [-] small lake. 16 sails set at night [-] [p. 3].
Monday 24 In afternoon passed within 8 miles off part of the Isle. That near the [island the] sea was nearly level & covered with trees. On the west side was a bay then again a gently inclined hill & which also appeared covered with wood & coffee trees. Smoke was coming from a many places which I suppose was from the sugar boilers. The hills in the background were very bold and the tops were covered with beautiful large white clouds in all manner of fantastic shapes. At the same time the sky was a beautiful ethereal blue, with not a cloud by what was in the horizon. The sea very gently rippled and of a bright blue color while the breeze was gently wafting the languished sails or the bosom of the mighty deep. In afternoon saw a fish which was called the Barracuda - or long & thin fish with large brown & reddish spots on his back. He was about ten feet long - with a broad tail. In the bay of the island the smoke was continually rising and according to its distance. I should expect there was a largish town on it. At night we were going about 3 or 4 knots an hour. I saw lights on the shore & the reflections of light over the town - also saw lightening 8 times from the East. The sun set in a most awfully grand manner being between the horizon and a very black cloud which poured down rain in [-] - while the space between the cloud & the sea appearance of a deep buried red glare, & the clouds in the top of the high hills was red & wild in the extreme - Steer 5 in morn. West & by north at night west & by south.
25 When we arose we were on the southwest point of the Isle which were a very hilly & rugged mountains and not the least breath of wind to stir the souls being a dead calm, the water not a ripple on it nor a cloud in the sky but it was of a most beautiful azure blue. About 6 in even the wind began to ripple the sea & we once more started on our voyage in a very gently manner in direction of north of southwest by north.
26th At 6 in morn. we come in sight of the Island of Jamaica which appeared from 30 to 40 miles off - steered to the north side of it (about 20 miles) we could distinguish smoke arising in two or three places which was supposed to be Kingston & the northeast part was bold hills but on the west part of it appears to be more level or rather very gentle hills & regular - going about 6 knots an hour west by north.
About noon I saw a whale (grampus) blowing water but [-] to the distance. Could not tell its size. Saw a many curious birds - chiefly white bellies & red to brown backs with very long wings. Caught a piece of curious sea weed with a many very small shells on it. At sunset I discovered Cuba about 60 miles off. A dullish day and fine evening. [p. 4]
27 When I arose I could see the Isle of Cuba on the right hand about 40 miles off c [UNCLEAR, PROBABLY ABBREVIATION FOR Cuba]. Also saw Jamaica - the south about some distance. I also for the 1st time saw the sun rise at sea which was very grand this morn. Was a very troublesome one in regard to water. At noon saw a vessel apparently steering in the same direction as our ship going about 3 knots an hour - fine day.
28 At 1 o'clock we were on the north side of the Grand Cayman Isles going about 7 knots an hour in north. Most splendid day in evening had a land bird in the rigging.
29 Nearly a calm all day - & very fine - in morn. I saw a drive of flying fish & afterwards a very large drive of tortoises.
Sunday 30. April- a dead calm, very hot, the hottest day at sea. In evening saw a new moon being [-] hours old. Shy, very sea like, gold red lightning at night.
May 1st A dead clam all day. Very hot, lightning at night.
2nd Had a meeting. A fair wind in our favor all day. At night lightning very much for more & quicker than ever I saw at noon. Saw a steamer and through the day several vessels steering in same direction. In morning a woodpecker was shot. Saw several dolphins.
3rd At 1/4 past 2 in the morning we were much alarmed by a crash and on awaking I was told that all the masts & sails were blown over. I found that the lightning was flashing in an uncommon manner & a wind came & [-] carried away the fore-topmast & all the topmasts & jib & all the upper sails, left us a perfect [-] object. All day we were getting in the sails - broken spars &c and we were drifting away with the current. Saw land to the north. In evening managed to get four sails set & we sailed about 2 or 3 knots an hour. Saw several dolphins, the most beautiful fish I ever saw.
4th In morning came in sight again of Cape Antonia.. Saw also several vessels. We were sailing about 4 knots an hour. Afternoon rain & afterwards a dead calm again. Evening sprung up a sweet breeze.
5th Breeze still continuing sailing northwest 6 knots an hour. In morning caught two dolphins, the most variegated fish I ever saw. A vessel passed us about 11 o'clock sailing from London to Mobile out 59 days offered us assistance & provisions, but we did not need any. It was a beautiful and cheering sight to see the vessel in full sail & to hear their kind voice to us. A beautiful day & sailing well.
6th Hoisted a foretop sail, we went delightfully. The vessel not yet out of sight. At noon saw a large black bird sailing like a kite over the water. It had a beautiful swallow tail going when I went to bed. 8 knots.
7th Sailing well all day. Saw several vessels at night. Saw the lighthouse [ABRUPT END OF THE DIARY]. [p.5]
BIB: Bullock, Thomas. (Ms 1385, fd. 1), pp. 1-5 (CHL)