Sailing Alone Around The World
I was recently writing an article about Learning to develop your sixth sense at sea and in the first paragraph I mentioned Joshua Slocum, and his epic yarn "Sailing Alone Around The World". This encouraged me to dig out the book and reread it. I'd completely forgotten what a fantastic read it is, so for your benefit, dear reader, here it is.
For those that haven't read it it was first published in around 1900 and tells of Captain Joshua Slocum's epic around the world voyage in a boat he constructed himself, "The Spray".
The stories are all told in a deceptively light-hearted manner, but the feats he accomplished must have taken steely determination and outstanding seamanship. From being chased by pirates, constantly harassed by cunning natives demanding "Yammerschooner !", and meeting all kinds of weather with fortitude, this rifle toting sea captain of Nova Scotia was the first to sail all around the world in a small boat.
For those with a love of the sea or adventure in their hearts this book is a "must read". It is presented here chapter by chapter in PDF form for easy reading and printing... unfortunately we do not have the illustrations that came with the original book.
The photograph however is of the original boat, the lines of which have launched hundreds of modern-day imitation "Sprays". Most often built in steel nowadays and found roaming in far flung places, the design has stood the test of time making a safe comfortable voyaging boat.
A blue-nose ancestry with Yankee proclivities==Youthful fondness for
the sea==Master of the ship Northern Light ==Loss of the
Aquidneck ==Return home from Brazil in the canoe Liberdade ==The
gift of a "ship"==The rebuilding of the Spray ==Conundrums in regard
to finance and calking==The launching of the Spray .
Failure as a fisherman==A voyage around the world projected==From
Boston to Gloucester==Fitting out for the ocean voyage==Half of a dory
for a ship's boat==The run from Gloucester to Nova Scotia==A shaking
up in home waters==Among old friends.
Good-by to the American coast==Off Sable Island in a fog==In the open
sea==The man in the moon takes an interest in the voyage==The first
fit of loneliness==The Spray encounters La Vaguisa ==A bottle of
wine from the Spaniard==A bout of words with the captain of the
Java ==The steamship Olympia spoken==Arrival at the Azores.
Squally weather in the Azores==High living==Delirious from cheese and
plums==The pilot of the Pinta ==At Gibraltar==Compliments exchanged
with the British navy==A picnic on the Morocco shore.
Sailing from Gibraltar with the assistance of her Majesty's tug==The
Spray's course changed from the Suez Canal to Cape Horn==Chased by a
Moorish pirate==A comparison with Columbus==The Canary Islands==The
Cape Verde Islands==Sea life==Arrival at Pernambuco==A bill against
the Brazilian government==Preparing for the stormy weather of the cape.
Departure from Rio de Janeiro==The Spray ashore on the sands of
Uruguay==A narrow escape from shipwreck==The boy who found a
sloop==The Spray floated but somewhat damaged==Courtesies from the
British consul at Maldonado==A warm greeting at Montevideo==An
excursion to Buenos Aires==Shortening the mast and bowsprit.
Weighing anchor at Buenos Aires==An outburst of emotion at the mouth
of the Plate==Submerged by a great wave==A stormy entrance to the
strait==Captain Samblich's happy gift of a bag of carpet-tacks==Off
Cape Froward==Chased by Indians from Fortescue Bay==A miss-shot for
"Black Pedro"==Taking in supplies of wood and water at Three Island
From Cape Pillar into the Pacific==Driven by a tempest toward Cape
Horn==Captain Slocum's greatest sea adventure==Reaching the strait
again by way of Cockburn Channel==Some savages find the
carpet-tacks==Danger from firebrands==A series of fierce
williwaws==Again sailing westward.
Repairing the Spray's sails==Savages and an obstreperous anchor==A
spider-fight==An encounter with Black Pedro==A visit to the steamship
Colombia ==On the defensive against a fleet of canoes==A record of
voyages through the strait==A chance cargo of tallow.
Running to Port Angosto in a snow-storm==A defective sheet-rope places
the Spray in peril==The Spray as a target for a Fuegian arrow==The
island of Alan Erric==Again in the open Pacific==The run to the island
of Juan Fernandez==An absentee king==At Robinson Crusoe's anchorage.
The islanders of Juan Fernandez entertained with Yankee doughnuts==The
beauties of Robinson Crusoe's realm==The mountain monument to
Alexander Selkirk==Robinson Crusoe's cave==A stroll with the children
of the island==Westward ho! with a friendly gale==A month's free
sailing with the Southern Cross and the sun for guides==Sighting the
Marquesas==Experience in reckoning.
Seventy-two days without a port==Whales and birds==A peep into the
Spray's galley==Flying-fish for breakfast==A welcome at Apia==A
visit from Mrs. Robert Louis Stevenson==At Vailima==Samoan
hospitality==Arrested for fast riding==An amusing
merry-go-round==Teachers and pupils of Papauta College==At the mercy
Samoan royalty==King Malietoa==Good-by to friends at Vailima==Leaving
Fiji to the south==Arrival at Newcastle, Australia==The yachts of
Sydney==A ducking on the Spray ==Commodore Foy presents the sloop
with a new suit of sails==On to Melbourne==A shark that proved to be
valuable==A change of course-The "Rain of Blood"==In Tasmania.
A testimonial from a lady==Cruising round Tasmania==The skipper
delivers his first lecture on the voyage==Abundant provisions==An
inspection of the Spray for safety at Devonport==Again at
Sydney==Northward bound for Torres Strait==An amateur
shipwreck==Friends on the Australian coast==Perils of a coral sea.
Arrival at Port Denison, Queensland==A lecture==Reminiscences of
Captain Cook==Lecturing for charity at Cooktown==A happy escape from a
coral reef==Home Island, Sunday Island, Bird Island==An American
pearl-fisherman==Jubilee at Thursday Island==A new ensign for the
Spray ==Booby Island==Across the Indian Ocean==Christmas Island.
A call for careful navigation==Three hours' steering in twenty-three
days==Arrival at the Keeling Cocos Islands==A curious chapter of
social history==A welcome from the children of the islands==Cleaning
and painting the Spray on the beach==A Mohammedan blessing for a pot
of jam==Keeling as a paradise==A risky adventure in a small boat==Away
to Rodriguez==Taken for Antichrist==The governor calms the fears of
the people==A lecture==A convent in the hills.
A clean bill of health at Mauritius==Sailing the voyage over again in
the opera-house==A newly discovered plant named in honor of the
Spray's skipper==A party of young ladies out for a sail==A bivouac
on deck==A warm reception at Durban==A friendly cross-examination by
Henry M. Stanley==Three wise Boers seek proof of the flatness of the
earth==Leaving South Africa.
Bounding the "Cape of Storms" in olden time==A rough Christmas==The
Spray ties up for a three months' rest at Cape Town==A railway trip
to the Transvaal==President Kruger's odd definition of the Spray's
voyage==His terse sayings==Distinguished guests on the
Spray ==Cocoanut fiber as a padlock==Courtesies from the admiral of
the Queen's navy==Off for St. Helena==Land in sight.
In the isle of Napoleon's exile==Two lectures==A guest in the
ghost-room at Plantation House==An excursion to historic
Longwood==Coffee in the husk, and a goat to shell it==The Spray's
ill luck with animals==A prejudice against small dogs==A rat, the
Boston spider, and the cannibal cricket==Ascension Island.
In the favoring current off Cape St. Roque, Brazil==All at sea
regarding the Spanish-American war==An exchange of signals with the
battle-ship Oregon ==Off Dreyfus's prison on Devil's
Island==Reappearance to the Spray of the north star==The light on
Trinidad==A charming introduction to Grenada==Talks to friendly
Clearing for home==In the calm belt==A sea covered with sargasso==The
jibstay parts in a gale==Welcomed by a tornado off Fire Island==A
change of plan==Arrival at Newport==End of a cruise of over forty-six
thousand miles==The Spray again at Fairhaven.
Her pedigree so far as known==The lines of the Spray ==Her
self-steering qualities==Sail-plan and steering-gear==An unprecedented
feat==A final word of cheer to would-be navigators.