Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 9, Number 3, September, 1999 Page: 154
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Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal
Balize, ere we arrived at Galveston. During all
this time I was very sick. Our kind hearted cap-
tain would take me in his arms and carrying me
up the gangway would place me on the little cot
which was prepared for me on deck, where I
would lie and look at the great billows rolling in-
cessantly, one after the other, an eternal rolling
without intermission, and the ship keeping mo-
tion with the waves, kept alive that sickening
nausea which with me could not be checked.
During all that time I ate nothing. One afternoon
the man at the masthead announced that a strange
ship was approaching us. As Mexico had not
recognized the independence of Texas, there was
danger to be apprehended from that quarter. Our
ship was mounted with cannon and all hands pre-
pared for action. The stranger which turned out
to be a French vessel, approached very near, so
near that I plainly saw the figurehead at her bow.
The captains of the respective ships saluted
through speaking trumpets, and each sailed qui-
etly on its course.
Another time my mother called my at-
tention to the waves. The captain had said that a
storm was coming. I looked to starboard and saw
afar a mountain of water, apparently approach-
ing our ship, its immense bulk illumined with a
yellowish light from the declining sun, as it came
rolling in majestic grandeur towards us. The pas-
sengers were ordered below, the hatchways
were closed down upon us, and ere we could
realize the full sense of our danger, the wind
came in one fierce tornado, and the huge wave
poured its mountain of water over our ship which
was struggling for life in the boiling cauldron of
howling winds, and roaring waters. She was but
a plaything for the giant waves that tossed her
now in the trough of the sea, now on the crest of
the billow. Dark was the night, so dark that it
was painful in its blackness. In the cabin there
were pale faces, and anxious hearts, where but
an hour ago was laughter and careless merri-
ment. During the whole of that night the storm
raged, and among the passengers silence reigned
supreme, broken only by one question and an-
swer. A lady cried out to her brother, "what shall
we do, brother N?" "Trust in the Lord, little sis-
ter," was the answer. I lay that night in the berth
with a young lady whose lips moved continually
in prayer. The trust reposed in that mighty and
faithful power was not in vain, and as day began
to break, the morning star in fresh and smiling
beauty, looked brightly down upon our rescued
ship. We were driven out of our course to a point
near Matagorda bay. We were in two storms
during our voyage, but the Eldorado was a good
ship, and on the morning of the eleventh day I
was carried on deck to look at Galveston. Yes,
there it lay, long, and low, an emerald gem on the
far sweeping ocean. There was only one house
upon it, which was on the east end, and which
was used as a fort. About a hundred tents and
huts situated further back, contained the Mexi-
can prisoners who were guarded there. The is-
land was occupied by a hundred Texian troops,
who garrisoned the place. Our brig did not cross
the bar, but was anchored outside and she lay
rolling in the waves while hundreds of porpoises
floated around her. At last the wished-for order
to land was given, the passengers were assisted
down the side of the vessel by our faithful and
hardy sailors, and placed in a yawl in which we
were safely conveyed to the island. As we neared
the shore the water became so shallow that our
boat could not reach the strand, so the ladies
were taken up by the sailors and carried ashore.
Some of the officers who inhabited the fort had
waded out to meet the boat, and Col. Morehead,
acting commandant, dressed in handsome naval
uniform, picked me up and carried me ashore. I
was very much alarmed as he had about a hun-
dred yards to wade through the shallow water,
and asked him if we would not be "drownded."
He very quietly and encouragingly quieted my
fears and told me that he would take care of me.
The passengers were cordially received and
welcomed by the Texian soldiers. We rested here
for some hours, waiting for a boat to convey us
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Nesbitt Memorial Library. Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 9, Number 3, September, 1999, periodical, September 1999; Columbus, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth151407/m1/26/?q=nesbitt%20memorial%20library%20journal: accessed September 19, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Nesbitt Memorial Library.