U.V.S. diary

U.V.S. diary
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Here we have part of a diary kept by Rev. Ulpianus on board ship after leaving Holland in 1746. What I have starts with page 3.

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This is a translation of the diary kindly provided by a VanSinderen cousin: rev. Marinus den Dekker of Dordrecht, Holland.

diary from 2 November 1746 until 10 February 1747

by the rev. Ulpianus van Sinderen jr.

written during his journey from Amsterdam to America;

the part below was kept by descendants in the US,

starting with page 3 and ending with page 14


page 3

With a south wind we arrived at the isle of Tessel[], after about 10 hours of sailing. We sailed another two and a half miles[] and dropped our anchor. But as we arrived we had to experience with regret that our captain was not yet there. I decided to go on land at Tessel, and I did so on Sunday afternoon between 3 and 4 o’clock. I stayed there during that day, and also the next Monday and a part of Tuesday November 1. Then, in the morning between 9 and 10 o’clock our captain came to me at Tessel, and I was very glad about that. We took some food and drink, and we left Tessel about 11 o’clock, and went on board. But the wind was against us, being south-west, so we stayed there that day.

Wednesday November 2: At 2 o’clock in the afternoon we left Tessel with a south-south- west wind. Our pilot left the ship at 5 o’clock in the evening.

Thursday November 3: The Northsea was so rough that I stayed at my berth during the whole day. That day I did not eat a thing. And we sailed about 9 miles.

Friday November 4: I felt a little better, so about 12 o’clock I left my berth and came on deck, and I was surprised about the Northsea. That day, at 6 o’clock in the morning, it had been so rough that it seemed everything should break to pieces, - as we experienced with dishes, china-ware and wine-glasses. We sailed 11 miles.


page 4

Saterday November 5: The weather was very nice again and then we got England within sight (but I myself I could not see it was land) at 11 o’clock. But the wind was very calm, so we only sailed 8 miles.

Sunday November 6: With a stiff south-west wind we sailed 13 miles. In the evening the wind became very strong, so we had to shorten sailes very much. At midnight our boatsmen had to take in all sailes. And we got out of sight again the land that our ship’s crew had seen the day before.

Monday November 7: We did not see a ship at all on the Northsea untill now. But this day at 11 o’clock we got a ship within sight. Everybody was ready, because we did not know if it was a friend or an enemy. But at last our ship’s crew supposed it to be a Dutch galliot, so no troubles at all. This day we got England within sight again. They showed me, but I could not see for sure if it was land or not. But at 3 o’clock in the afternoon I really saw land, and also a tower, of Malgrou Castle. At 4 o’clock we had a very nice view of a fleet, between 40 and 50 ships, all sailing before the wind. We also hoisted the flag, showing we were English. But we had against the wind, being a north wind, so we only sailed 8 miles.


page 5

Tuesday November 8: The weather was fine, we sailed before the wind, being south, and we sailed 6 miles. Then for 3 bottles of brandy we bought fine fish, about a thousend, from a certain seaman. We had a delicious meal! A short time afterwards we fired three shots and got a pilot on board, who should bring us to the harbour of South-Shields[]. But at the moment we just came in front of the harbour of this place (not far from New-Castle[]), we had a run of bad luck running aground at the sands in front of the harbour, by the inexperience of the pilot. It was 3 or 4 o’clock in the afternoon then. It is impossible to say, what happened: everybody was ready, a large crowd of people were running all over the ship, all trying to help us. And we came free from it (thanks to God!) when the flood rised, at about 10 or 11 o’clock. It costed us quite a lot of drinks, wine and brandy. There was a lot of conversation

on board, but I hardly could understand anything of it, excepted a gentleman speaking Latin, which I understood a little. I know it was a bad day for the pilot mentioned above. I suppose he got more strokes than money, and he was glad as he could leave the ship.

Wednesday November 9: I went from board on land, for some sight-seeing. I have seen more with surprise than I ever saw in Holland. The people, the streets, the land, and especially the ruins of an old castle. You can spend a whole day there, if you want so see in every hook and corner, etc. During the walk that day I had a meal, at cost price of 1-2-0 Dutch.

Thursday November 10: The weather still was very fine and I went


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on land together with my captain. I had a meal with him, and we payed for ourselves. In this occasion I spent 1.0.0 Dutch that day. And I sent off four letters: one to my father and one to Pedro de Wolf and Dirk de Wolf.

Friday November 11: It was a rainy day, so I quietly stayed on board. During this day the ship was visited, but there was more of eating and drinking, in stead of searching what was in the ship.

Saterday November 12: A rainy day again and I stayed on the ship.

Sunday November 13: I went on land and in the afternoon I attended the English church, but I did not take a lot along with me. During the whole next week I walked here and there, sight- seeing in North as well as in South-Shields. Then our ship was visited for the second time.

Sunday November 20: I went on land again and I visited a certain boatman from the town of Workum in Friesland. I had a cup of tea etc. with him with pleasure.

Monday November 21: Together with our ship’s crew I went on foot to New-Castle, which was about 8 English miles. But when I arrived there I wanted to eat roasted lamb, but I could not get it, because I did not speak the language. So I was obliged to


page 7

use the old Frisian saying: "Buter, brea en chies is goed Engelsch en goed Fries"[]. I was delighted this proved to be true, because they put on the table: butter, bread and cheese, with a bottle of wine. I had a good meal with it. I walked around the town, and in the afternoon I returned to North-Shields and to our ship. The next four days of the week I spent on board now and on land another time.

Saterday November 26: Together with our captain I went on horseback from North-Shields to Newcastle. A gentleman, living overthere, asked us for dinner. As the night was falling suddenly we stayed there overnight.

Sunday November 27: My captain left alone, and I stayed a part of the day overthere. In the afternoon at 3 o’clock I left for North-Shields.

Wednesday November 30: In the evening our ship left North-Shields. But we left behind two of our boatsmen: one because of the Spanish smallpocks, as one said; the other one just left the ship leaving behind his trunk. But when we opened the trunk, we found it empty.

That night and the next day we sailed with pleasure, very well before the wind, and we did not think about any trouble. But our luck was turning completely, and in stead of a good wind with us we got a stiff wind against us.

page 8

So I stayed at my berth during almost three days, not eating neither drinking anything. Because of the strong wind we had to take in all sails. And at last, with regret, we were obliged to put into the harbour of North-Shields again at December 6 (Saint-Nicholas day). We left it November 30, so we were back again at the same place where we arrived from Amsterdam 4 weeks before.

In the mean time we saw a certain boat drifting, from which our boatsmen took 4 sculls and a hook. The boat itself they left drifting.

After spending some days in the harbour of North-Shields, we left again at Sunday December 18, about 4 or 5 o’clock. We left behind one of our sailors, who went to another ship the night before, - at least this was what one supposed. So in a short time we lost 3 of our ship’s crew and it was necessary to complete the number with 3 again. But our captain only got 2, one of them an old man, about 60 years old, and because of that not very useful. This old man had to feed a large number of little animals-on-six-feet, said lice, on his top. The lice were so many they almost ate him.

Besides these two sailors our captain ordered a pilot to bring us to Duens


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or to another harbour if need be. We did not want to return to North-Shields for a second time. We left North-Shields again December 18, and by Gods grace we arrived in front of the harbour of the town of Yarmouth December 22. Because of the wind we were obliged to anchor there and we did in the evening at 4 or 5 o’clock.

Sunday December 25, being Christmas-day: We went on land at Yarmouth and did some sight-seeing in this place.

Monday December 26: Early in the morning, at 4 o’clock, being the wind north-west to west, we weighed our anchor. At 1 o’clock we had to drop it again, because of the shallowness in front of Harwich. We had to wait for the flood-tide. The weather was nice and fine that day.

Friday Decemer 30: At 8 o’clock in the morning we weighed our anchor again, and with a south-west wind we arrived at the harbour of Harwich. We anchored there, but at 3 o’clock in the afternoon we were obliged by the shallowness to weighed our anchor again immediately and to drop it at a deeper place, as we did. That same day


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there was some disagreement between me and the captain. The reason of this: I replaced my tun of butter to another place. I supposed it would be more safe there against the privateers. I had the right to do that, because it was mine and I took it along with me from Friesland. 1747, at January 1, I went to Harwich, and after some sight-seeing I went on board again.

Monday January 2: Together with the captain I travelled by ship to Ipswich. This is about 12 English miles from Harwich. There are 12 churches in this town, little ones and larger ones. We went back from this town to Harwich at December 4[]

Between January 7 and 8, we lost by night our anchor, and the ship’s crew had a lot of work bringing back the ship at the place from which it drived away.

Tuesday January 9: This was a very stormy day, with a lot of snow. We tried to refind our anchor with ropes. At last we did find it, and late at night we got it on the ship again, with a lot of trouble and pain. We all were glad it succeeded!

Friday January 12: The wind was north-east and it seemed we could continue our difficult journey. But unfortunately: in stead of that our captain, who was on land then, returned on board with two women. He went (but first he took some bottles of wine from my cellar!) with them to Ipswich and the other day he returned on board with one of those women at 5 o’clock in the morning. To my great surprise he took her to his berth, and handled with her as a married man does to his wife. After the show was done, he take her from board on land again. It is my great abomination! I punished him heartily about this, but he held his tongue.


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January 17 a boat came towards our ship and brought a letter from Londen for the captain. And again they took of my wine, against my will, and they drunk etc.

The captain left together with those people and returned on board in the evening. I was angry with him. I told him not to take my wine, because I wanted to keep my own duds for the purpose I bought those for and took those with me on this journey. We had words with each other for quite a long time. Then I declared to the captain, that I intended to leave the ship, instead of all this. At that moment he started to listen and to be quiet, promising to behave better in future.

Wednesday January 18: When I came from my berth in the morning, again I declared seriously to the captain, that I intended to go on land and leave his ship, searching another opportunity to continue my difficult journey. He gave me a calm reaction, saying I should not do like this, and promising he would be as a friend to me in future. After this promise I stopped the intention to leave. But how it will go farther on this matter, - only the good God knows, whose work this is, made known long ago, - Acts 15, verse 18.

Thursday January 19: Our captain came on board again at 3 o’clock at night. He was intoxicated and I was obliged to leave my bed because of his foolishness.

In this place, mentioned above, we got two sailors again, but they did not want to stay with us for a long time, so they both left the ship after about two nights.


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We got a sailor on board from Boston, who shipwrecked at the isle of Tessel. But when we should leave and saile away from there, he was ill.

Sunday January 29: At 2 o’clock we weighed our anchor again. But with a lot of trouble, for first we got entangled in the ropes of another ship. After that we sticked fast completely. But at 3 o’clock we got loose beyond expectation. That night we sailed 5 miles and then we dropped our anchor again, because of the shallowness near to a reef. The land beyond was very high.

Monday January 30: At 8 o’clock in the morning we weighed our anchor again. The wind was south-west, so completely against us. All our waiting at Harwich during the time of 4 weeks was fruitless. Because of the wind against us, and the stream, and the shallowness we dropped our anchor again at 4 o’clock. A short time afterwards a large war-ship came along and took our ship’s crew in our boat with them, and they charged 25 Dutch guilders.

Tuesday January 31: The wind was south-east. The weather was quiet and misty. We weighed our anchor again at 8 o’clock in the morning and drifted a bit on the stream. But in the afternoon the wind changed and was with us. So that day we sailed before the wind, which was quite stiff, and we came in front of the mouth of the river leading to London. There we anchored at 4 o’clock in the afternoon. That day I have seen the largest war-ship known all over the world, - at least they told me this.




page 13, damaged, especially in the top and in the bottom

The name of the ship was "the King - - - ". The other day from this war-ship - - - which was at anchor not far from ours, came a - - - with some boatsmen to our ship, saying - - -

they were 1800 strong, men, women, children, to - - - 1500 men, 200 women, 100 children, 100 cannons. They needed 4 beasts every day as stock for slaughter etc.

Wednesday February 1: At 11 o’clock we weighed our anchor again. Before the wind and the weather being nice and fine we continued our course to Dover. We anchored at 4 o’clock, after we sailed 8 miles.

Thursday February 2: We weighed our anchor again at noon. And we sailed, with a stiff wind, being north-west. We sailed 10 miles and dropped our anchor at 5 o’clock in the evening.

Friday February 3: At 6 o’clock in the morning we weighed our anchor and a good wind with us we arrived in front of Dover at noon. The ground there is like white crayon, which can be used to write with, - at least they told me this. And after we arrived at Dover on February 3, we were, because the wind was very - - - - - nice fleet of ships, reinforced with some war-ships, left from there at 3 o’clock in the afternoon, at which occasion we - - - - - - - - -

saw France in the evening - - - - - - - - a French privateer - - - - - - - - before - - - - - - - - - the

- - - - - - - - take, but - - - - - - - - - - in a hurry - - - - - - - - - -


page 14, damaged, especially in the top and in the bottom

Saterday February 4: Early in the morning of that day I - - - - a nice fleet of ships, in number over 50, small and large - - - - - reinforced with some war-ships, which was a beautiful sight

- - - - - -

We sailed that day quite a distance with a fine breeze, so - - - - - - - - about noon it was completely calm, and during the next night as well, so we did not make any advance at all.

Sunday February 5: In the morning it was still calm. All ships that sailed with us from Dover were out of our sight. But in the afternoon the wind rised again, and soon we sailed with a south-east wind a good distance through the Canal.

Monday February 6: At night the wind came against us completely, so we were obliged to return quite a distance. That day at 4 o’clock we arrived at East- and West-Cows, and there we anchored.

Tuesday February 7: The weather was very rough, so we all stayed in the ship quietly.

Wednesday night between 7 and 8 o’clock we lost our boat, because the strong wind broke the rope on which the boat had been tied up. This Cows is a place at the isle of Wight. This isle is 26 miles long and 14 miles wide, - at least they told me this.

Friday February 10: According to the English calendar this was January 30[]. There was also to us - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - of the decapitation of King C - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - which

King Charles [] - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ded had - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - we have - - - - -