Tags

090_Page 88Wednesday. 21. st. of December. 1842.

A mild, heavy rain, to carry off the snow I hope. We have a great change in the weather since Sunday, to.day it is quite like spring, the rain will clear our streets entirely. The “holidays” are approaching, and the children count every hour; I envy them their innocent anticipations; and the pleasure they feel in going to their grand parents house. Regrets for the past, or dread for the future, adds no sorrow to their cup, this alloy must mingle in the draught of those, who are older, and wiser. I must be happy; in their happiness;” Mr H. came up to dinner earlier than usual, the dull weather puts a veto on business. He romped with the children an hour; they love it better than any other amusement. Remmy’s hearty laugh is delightfull, and rings through the soul, like music. My bones, and back ached, but I kept on the even tenor of my way. A loud ring at the bell, and a note sealed with black, startled us but it was only an invitation to a party for Julie, from Sara Hassel. sent by Aunt Kate, through dispatched post. G. and I spent out evening toe.to.toe, he reading the papers, while I was busily employed plying my needle; and listening. The case of “Young Spencer” (1), hung at somersthe yard arm [yardam] for mutiny fills the paper at present. I sent a bundle of old clothes to a poor woman she is a stranger to me, but her distress awakens my sympathy. Simon, took them.
—————————————————–
(1) Philip Spencer (January 28, 1823 – December 1, 1842), a midshipman aboard the USS Somers, was hanged for mutiny without a lawful court-martial. In November 1842, during the return home from a voyage to Liberia, suspicion arose that Spencer had formed a plan to seize the Somers and sail her as a pirate ship or slave ship. His friendship with crew members Samuel Cromwell and Elisha Small was cited as evidence, as both these men were rumored to have sailed aboard slavers in the past. The circumstance of Spencer, Cromwell and Small’s deaths is one reason the U.S. Navy stopped training boys at sea and founded the United States Naval Academy. The event on the USS Somers may be the only mutiny on a warship in US Navy history. Philip Spencer and the USS Somers affair were almost certainly the model for much of the story Billy Budd, by Herman Melville, who was the first cousin of Lieutenant Guert Gansevoort, an officer aboard the ship.

Advertisements