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HM Sloop Penguin collection, 1814-1815

0.25 linear feet

The HM Sloop Penguin collection contains watercolor illustrations, photographs, a crew member's letter, and a journal, all related to the British cruiser that was sunk by the American Navy, just after the end of the War of 1812.

The HM Sloop Penguin collection consists of 4 watercolor illustrations, 2 photographs, 1 letter, and one journal.

The Watercolor illustrations series contains four scenic views, presumably of St. Helena or Tristan da Acunha, tall ships in a small harbor, two distinct land masses, and a small settlement with fortifications.

The letter, dated February 18, 1815, is from a HM Sloop Penguin crew-member, writing to his sister, Mrs. Samuel Trigge, in Chelsea, England. The letter recounts many of the Penguin's movements as they search for an American privateer that had recently captured an English ship. The letter describes the Penguin's upcoming trip, which they did not complete, from the Cape of Good Hope to St. Helena, then on to the Island of Ascension and Tristan da Cunha, and finally back to the Cape of Good Hope. The letter describes the author's employment prospects and the possibility of returning to England, as well as his observations of life at the Cape of Good Hope.

The photographs are reproductions of a silhouette of a military man, presumably James Dickinson, and of a fine pen and ink drawing of a ship in a storm.

The journal has a monogram on the spine reading "S B." The volume's 81 pages (148 blank pages) document the Penguin's voyages from August 17, 1814-March 22, 1815. The author dutifully noted wind and weather conditions and often included important events on the ship and ashore. The journal's daily entries vary from a few lines to an entire page, and ends on March 22, just one day before the Penguin's capture.


William Bentinck logbooks, 1783-1800

2 volumes

This collection consists of two manuscript notebooks kept by William Bentinck, a British naval officer, that document three voyages exploring the harbors, rivers, and settlements around Nova Scotia.

This collection consists of two manuscript notebooks kept by British Naval Officer William Bentinck. These notebooks document three voyages. The first was H.M.S. Atalanta from Halifax, Nova Scotia, to Charlotte Town, Prince Edward Island, July-August, 1784; the second voyage was H.M.S. Felicity from Halifax to Cape Breton Island in 1784, conveying Lieutenant Governor Des Barres and his suite; the third was H.M.S. Temeraire and is a partial log with sailing instructions for a number of North American and West Indian harbors, February-July 1800. These logs chart days, courses, distances (in miles?), latitudes and longitudes, bearings (noting destination) and distances in leagues, and are accompanied by remarks on the journey. The Atalanta's log describes harbors, rivers, and settlements at Knowles Harbor, Pope's Harbor, Liscomb Harbor, Chedabucto Bay, and Pictou Harbor. Bentinck made several sketches throughout the volumes, including a simple pencil sketch of "Bald Island,” Nova Scotia, and two maps of the area. The maps have been individually cataloged and include:

In addition to the journal content are seven correspondence entries of Sir James Hawkins Whitshed, 1799-1800. In the middle of the second volume are ten pages of copied transcriptions of contemporary literature, including several excepts from A Political Receipt Book, from An asylum for fugitive pieces, in prose and verse (Volume 2, 1785, edited by John Almon), and a copy of a poetic epitaph by Mr. Pulteney, Earl of Bath, among other entries. These entries are in a different hand from the Bentinck logs.