Philander Chase



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Recounting the dangerous parts of his voyage to England, but Good Providence and prayer kept him safe.




Liverpool, England


England voyage, Orbit, Ireland, Captain Tinkham, London, Manchester, Bp. Bowen, Thomas Osborne


Liverpool Nov 3rd 1823

My Dear Son;

This morning at 12 we got our good ship Orbit safety moored in Princes Dock in this commercial town. You will not be surprised at the length of our voyage when you are informed of the opposing winds which rendered a shorter impossible. All however has ended well: and gratitude for our preservation is now and I hope ever will be the predominant passion of my soul. On Sunday, the 19th [?] we had a dreadful storm of rain and wind. It shook the hearts of the stoutest of us and called us to our prayers. But this though tremendous was nothing to what followed after we had entered the channel.

As we passed round Cape Clear a favourable wind promised a happy and speedy termination to a, hitherto, boisterous voyage. The green hills of En. by day, and her sparkling lights on the promontories by night, enlivened the moments as we passed rapidly on: till on the [?] of the 19th of Oct the Brilliant Lighthouse of the HolyHead on Anglelsea revolving on its axis and shewing every minute its incomparable blaze, rose to our view. “Our wind is favourable” said our good Capt. Tinkham. “The wind is favourable for us to pass round this, the most difficult point to pass in the channel.” We indeed did pass it and got up with point [Linus] by the break of day.

The wind changing to the N East and coming on to blow to guns were fired for a pilot (for we were on the ground which they traverse;) but none appeared. We stood off in hopes to return and find them better prepared. But it was otherwise ordered. The wind continued to increase to a gale before noon, and by night the whole channel was in a present foam. Thursday night and all Friday the 30th and 31st were days of terror never to be forgotten. Hemmed in between two dangerous shores and blown at the mercy of the unpitying winds who could but reflect on the fate of the Albion? What was singular the sea shown the peculiar brilliancy and both in the morning and the evening of the 31st. The foaming waves were so much taken up into the air that there was nearly one unceasing rainbow. This seemed verification of the promise in reversion, not in mercy but in terror. The “Bow was in the cloud” but the cloud was formed not from above but from below even from the angry deep.

We were driven down the Channel and again had to retrace our steps round The HolyHead. On the same ground from which we were driven on Thursday we got a pilot on Sunday, and on the same day dropped anchor 6 miles below the town for want of water: and on this morning we came up unto Dock as related.

We learn that the gale has been very severe and considerable damage done.

We learn also (what you will smile to read) that the very day on which we were driven off from the pilot ground - [?] Thursday, the Meteor by reason that she had passed up a few miles the night before with a pilot got up to Liverpool. I hear that the Little Man passed rapidly on to London. May the Good Providence ever thus bless and protect him. At the same time I pray for a blessing on those few sheep which I have left in the Wilderness and I trust in the goodness and mercy of God that He will not leave them destitute.

It has been a busy afternoon with us in getting our baggage passed at the Customhouse. I am now at the quiet and very comfortable Boarding Inn; and intend with the leave of Providence on the morrow to go to Manchester on my way to London.

My Dear Dear Son if you thought of me as I have thought of you during my passage, we have mingle our hearts and our prayers. Don’t forget to mention me with great respect and love to Bp. Bowen and Mr. Osborne. Say every thing that is tender to them for me.

Above all let me have your prayers continued for the good cause in which I am engaged. Who knows but that thro’ your fervency I have thus far been preserved?

Your loving Fa.

P Chase

Letter to Philander Chase Jr



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