19th December 1878 – 84th day

“Up at 8.30. Another beautiful day & this morning they had every sail set; in all 26 & I should have liked to have seen her at a distance for she must have looked nice I am sure.

Clipper sailing ship painting

The wind has fallen off again this morning & we are doing 5 knots an hour now. I should like to be in London port now to go to the cattle show for our stock of animals is rather small just now: 2 pigs, 1 sheep & a cat. All the fowls are eaten & the kitten which has been ailing for some time has been thrown overboard for a fair wind. I have been amusing myself by sharpening my knives this morning & cutting up some tobacco. I am now pretty confident that if we do not get to Melbourne by the end of 3 weeks at least we shall have shared the fate of a good many other ships & have gone to the bottom. Bed at 11.15”

Extract from A.Whelen’s Australia travel journal sailing from England in 1878 aboard the iron clipper ‘Hesperides’


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