Collision at Sea: The Juno 1835


The Juno was a 125 ton brig built in Newfoundland in 1820 and owned by Philippe Nicolle of 9 Pier Road, St Helier, Jersey. In 1834/5 her captain was Mr Hammond and while on a voyage from Newfoundland to Trieste she was in collision with a Dutch vessel about 40 miles off the coast of Spain. This letter is by one of the crew to his mother in Jersey to inform her that he was safe.


Mrs Payn




Gibralter, 9 January 1835



As we have had the misfortune of losing our vessel on Tuesday night at half past one o'clock I will let you know, that we are all saved, thank God but have lost all our clothes, but however, we have saved our lives that is the greatest thing. This misfortune has happened to us 5 weeks after we had sailed from Newfoundland. I dare say that you will be uneasy about me, but I have had the luck of finding a good friend of finding Captain and Mrs Simmons and Mr F Le Grand here which have supplied me with clothes and besides that Captain Simmons will have the goodness of finding me a passage home. And so you may think that he has been so good to me as if he was my own father. When he has heard of our misfortune he instantly sent for me, and has secured me like his own child by which he has given me a pen and ink, so that I may write to you. The packet will sail tomorrow, so I dare say that you will receive this letter in 7 or 8 days. I will let you know how our misfortune happend in we were standing about 40 miles from Gibralter and the wind being contrary so that we were obliged to beat off and in amongst a crowd of vessels and so that we were boarded by a Dutch ship which instantly sunk the Juno. One had just time to save our lives by jumping on board the said vessel some of us quite naked and some not. But it was such good people on board the Dutch vessel that they have supplied us with clothes and provisions like at the present.

Mrs Simmons is quite well and desires me to remember her to you. Mr F Le Grand is also very kind to me and was telling me this evening that you told him that you had dreamed a sad dream about me and I dare say that this dream is accomplished but however I am save and not the least bit hurt neither me nor nobody of the crew. I dare say that I will be the only one that will write and so you will be so kind as to let those know that will inform themselves of the crew that they are all quite well and intend to go home as quick as is possible. Excuse the letter for being before strangers and not having time to think about many trifling things. I hope that we will have the pleasure of meeting again in a fortnight's time.


I remain Dear Maman

Your most true son



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