Friday, May 22, 2009

Master William Morris & William Kloot Mate. 1805.

The merchant seamen had to face many dangers at sea, not only the dangers of the sea itself but the many different foreign powers that roam the high seas looking for any foreign ships to attack. Many merchant ships headed out of Newburyport Massachusetts for foreign lands like the Island of Martinico. This is the protest of the Brig Lucretia, which was on it’s way to the Island Martinico, but never reached the Island as they were attacked and robbed the ship of it's cargo and rigging, when the Master and mate finely returned to Newburyport, they give a statement of protest, the following is that statement.

Commonwealth of Massachusetts Port of Newburyport:

By this public instrument of protest, be it known and made manifest, that, on this second day of December, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and five, and in the thirtieth year of the independence of the United States of America, personally came and appeared before me, Michael Hodge, Notary Public, by legal authority admitted and sworn, dwelling in the town of Newburyport, in the Commonwealth aforesaid, William Morris, master of the brig Lucretia, of Newburyport, William Kloot, mate of the said brig, who, being duly sworn according to law, did severally solemnly and sincerely depose, testify, and declare.

That they sailed in the said Lucretia from Newburyport on the 24th day of August last past, laden with a cargo suitable for the West India market, and bound for the island of Martinico. That on the 20th day of September following, being then in latitude twenty-one degrees north, and longitude fifty-eight degrees vest, they saw at five P. M. brig bearing southeast, steering northwest; at half past five they fired a gun and were brought to, hailed, and ordered tam Morris to veer round under his stern, and he would send on board his boat, which he accordingly did, and took Captain Morris out of the brig, and left a prize-master and one man on board the Lucretia; at about half past six P. M. they again sent their boat on board with four more men, armed with pistols and cutlasses; they went immediately below, and began to break open every thing in their way, in search, as they said, for naval stores, though it evidently appeared plunder was their object.

They robbed the brig of all her new canvass, all her candles, pump nails, locks, and gimlets; all the beans, coffee, and tea, and all the cabin stores: they broke open the medicine chest, and took several things out of it: they went down into the run, broke open several boxes of sweet oil, and broke a number of the bottles, took half a tierce of bread, several buckets of potatoes, and the bucket. They also robbed the said William Morris, the master, of his watch, great coat, a new pair of boots, a new hat, and a pair of blue trousers: they also robbed the mate, William Kloot, of twenty-three pair of shoes, twenty-four morocco skins, and one pair of trousers, and the cooper of eighty pair of shoes, and all the people’s clothing they could find.

That at about ten o’clock, they took William Gilbert, one of the Lueretia’s hands, and tied him up to the main rigging: they presented. a pistol to the said mate, and declared that if he offered to move, or to speak, they would blow his brains out: they twice went with the plunder they took, and returned the third time, and Captain Morris with them, it being then about eleven o’clock, bringing with them clubs instead of their weapons as before; that they began plundering again, and on the peoples entreating them to leave their clothing, they began to beat them with their clubs, and three of the people were most inhumanly beaten; that they struck Captain Morris twice with their boat’s tiller in his face for only requesting them to cease plundering them any more; that during all this time, they on board the armed brig kept up a constant firing with their musketry. That at about midnight, they permitted the Lucretia to proceed on her voyage.

That the brig which abused and plundered them carried eighteen or twenty guns, from Africa bound to Jamaica; they told Captain Morris, the brig’s name was the Andromeda, of London, commanded by Captain Carrot. Wherefore, the said William Morris, the master as aforesaid, doth require me, the said notary, to protest. I, the said notary, do, therefore, at the request aforesaid, and on behalf of the said William Morris, the master as aforesaid, and of the owner or owners, shippers, freighters, insurers, and all others in anywise concerned or interested in the said brig Lucretia, or her lading, as aforesaid, or of any part thereof, solemnly protest against the owners, captains, officers, and crew of the said brig Andromeda, for the robbery of the said brig Lucretia, by the boat’s crew of the said Andromeda, as is particularly set forth in the body of this protest, and their abusive and inhuman conduct while on. board the said Lucretia, for all losses, costs, charges, damages, and expenses whatsoever had, borne, suffered, and sustained, or to be had, borne, suffered, and sustained by the said master, owner or owners, shippers, freighters, insurers, am! all others in anywise concerned or interested in the said Lucretia, or her lading, as aforesaid, or any part thereof, for or by reason of the matters and things as aforesaid. Thus done and protested at Newburyport, in the Commonwealth aforesaid.

In faith and testimony whereof, as well the said William Morris, and William Kloot, the deponents, as I, the said notary, have to these presents subscribed our names. And the said notary have hereunto set my hand, and affixed my notary seal, at Newburyport aforesaid, the day, month, and year aforesaid.
M. HODGE, Notary Public.
William Morris, Master.
William Kloot, Mate.

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