Arrived at Falmouth – Passengers Duke de Montebello

Friday 4th December – at 10 oClock A.M. came to an anchor in Falmouth Harbour, and were told that our next destination was to be to the Mediterranean, on the 8th January 1830.

The following passengers we landed, viz. the Duke of Montebello and his body servant Monsieur Lorraine – Senhor Manuel di Casa, and a black servant named Manuel Basque – Henry John Ross and his servant George – Lieut.t Yolland R.N. – M.r George Williams – Whitehorne, her little child, Henrietta – and servant Sarah – a M.r Teague (captain of one of the mines) and his wife – and lastly two distressed subjects from Carthagena.

The Duke de Montebello was our passenger from Carthagena. He was a young man of about 27 – and the son of the celebrated Lannes one of Bonapartes marshals. This young Duke has travelled a great deal and not without advantage to himself. He has been thro’ England, Ireland and Scotland – Italy, France, Holland and Switzerland – the United States – Canada – and Columbia. His person is tall & handsome – his manners are polite and agreeable, but I did not remark in him that attention to the lady, which all Frenchmen, as they were associated in my mind, would have rendered. His conversation was spirited full of information – and carried on in fluent and correct English. He seemed to have [been] well acquainted with many celebrated characters, as Montilla, Bolivar & the brother of Bonaparte in America – the president of the United States &.c

The Duke’s servant Monsieur Lorraine had been a Grenadier in Bonapartes army for eight years and had been present at many of the most celebrated battles in the Peninsular War. His tall erect figure proclaimed at once his former occupation – and every thing he did was quite a la militaire.

Senor de Casa and Servant

Senhor Manuel di Casa is the next in order, and requires but little notice. He was a little short man, with a good natured physiognomy. – a successful player at piquet, against the Duke and the Captain – and a Merchant from Quyaquil in Columbia. He came on board at Kingston.

Di Casa[‘s] black servant was a greater original than his master. Manuel Basque, as he was called, was a faithful fellow and strongly attached to his master. He had been in England for 9 months on a former occasion and during that time had picked up a good deal of English. To my surprise I saw him every day studying a Spanish and English Grammar – as I had not expected to find reading and writing among the attainments of a Columbian black man, tho’ free. Among the sailors he went by the nickname of Captain Jack – because, as they said there was no other black in the ship except himself. This name however was changed on a remarkable occasion. One night during a gale of wind, the large cabin stove broke from its lashings and was capsized. It so happened that poor Captain Jack who lay on the Cabin floor close to it, had been unable to sleep on account of the motion – and was therefore sensible of the giving way of the lashings, when he immediately got out of the way – and not one moment too soon, for the corner of the stove grazed his ankle. In his account of the accident next morning, he said that had he not moved out of the way quickee, quickee, he would have been killed. Ever after till the end of our voyage, he was known by no other name than “Quickee – Quickee.”

M.r Ross and Servant

Our next passenger was an Englishman, a M.r Henry John Ross from Jamaica. He was in the profession of the law and had resided for more than 30 years at Kingston, without experiencing almost one day’s illness. His good fortune however was not destined to last for ever – and a new at last sickness came upon him, the attack was very severe and made upon the roots of life. In short he was seized with Asthma, which in his case is not the disease itself but indicative of a severe affection of the lungs. From all that I saw of him (for he was very shy of taking medicine) I should augur that his career was fast drawing to a close – and that is little or no probability of his ever revisiting Jamaica, as he fondly but delusively expects. He seemed to be a person of great good sense and of extensive reading, not merely professional but also general.

He was accompanied by a young man, as servant, called George, who was in constant attendance upon him, as he alone knew M.r Ross temper & habits . – and indeed he had enough to do, as his master had not lived so long in a hot country without having imbibed a little of the hot peppers – and besides he was so capricious in his tastes, that he would frequently want things in the space of the 24 hours. This George was an active fellow and far above the common run of servants in his manners & dress. He had been 4 years at Sierra Leone with Sir — Turner the Governor, and had been in different places with his present Master.

Senor Yolland R.N. [4]

The last Gentleman passengers whom I have to mention is M.r Charles Augustus Yolland, R.N. M.r Yolland came on board at Port Royal, and when I first saw him he had his chops tied up with a handkerchief, from which I judged that he would require my assistance. It was so – and I found a moderate size abscess bag or sac near the eymphysis menti which from inflammatory action was constantly filled and refilled with pus. This had been occasioned by an accident, which he had met on board the Barham of 40 guns in which he was senior lieutenant [5]. In consequence of the severe injury sustained, a concussion of the brain, lacerated wounds and exfoliations of the inferior Maxilla, he was invalided and sent home – much to his own regret, as he had expected to obtain promotion more quickly in the West Indies than on any other station. At the end of three or four weeks, and after the exfoliation of four smaller pieces of bone, the wound healed up soundly and nothing was observed but a slight scar. From the circumstance of the case I was consequently thrown much into the society of M.r Yolland – and I was much pleased with him. He was a complete sailor and appeared to have a high opinion of the present race of officers over the old Sons of the Navy – natural enough! He was a young man of about 24 years of age 10 or 12 of which he had spent in the Navy – and even amidst the duties of his profession had found leisure for reading, particularly in relation to Naval History.

Case of Whitehorne

At Jamaica we received on board a lady, about whom I was naturally very anxious, as her case was so peculiar and she had so long laboured under her present symptoms. I cannot do better in order to explain her case to you, than to copy here the letter addressed to me by her family practitioner, detailing the symptoms, treatment pursued &.c

To the Surgeon of the Packet Duke of York.”

You will see Whitehorne in various situations – sometimes she suffers from headache simply – but more commonly Shooting pains or an sensation in the head [which] is followed by a train of symptoms of very diversified character. You will sometimes find these symptoms to be acute pain in the face and teeth – pain in the throat & neck & when the latter is the case the muscles of the throat and neck are spasmodically affected, by which the respiration is seriously impeded. At times the affection of the nerves is more general – & she is attacked with pain in the side – or in the epigastric region, with sharp and violent contraction of the muscles of the Chest and Abdomen – the contractions continuing for a few seconds, relaxing again for a few seconds – then returning again and going off as before – the number of the attacks varying much according to the severity of the paroxysms. Sometimes all the muscles of the body are rigidly contracted, resembling, tho’ of short duration, the opisthotonos of tetanus – then the muscles of the throat, chest, abdomen, and diaphragm are rigidly contracted, producing a very alarming appearance as the respiration during the attack is completely prevented – until the relaxation takes place, when the breathing is again carried on, till the return of the spasmodic action.

There is another state in which you may be called to see Whitehorne – a sensation of faintness is experienced – two or three quick respirations follow, and she falls into a state of imperfect stupor. When spoken to she will answer questions, but the eyes are vacant or slightly distorted, & she appears unconscious of surrounding objects – talks to persons who are not present as if they were beside her, or gives utterance to thoughts that are not addressed to any one. This is the only form of delirium I have ever witnessed and it soon passes off. When this takes place there is a sudden start like a person awaking from a disturbed sleep – then the countenance assumes its natural aspect & the senses are perfectly at her command. I have related all these appearances to prevent the application of any violent remedies from an apprehension of immediate danger – yet it may be of her necessary to adopt measures to shorten or alleviate the various attacks, which have been described. When W. is suffering from severe pain we have been obliged to alleviate this by anodynes. These have been Battlays sedative – solution of Acetate of Morphia – Tincture of Hyosciamis, and Lactuca Hortensis – with all these medicines W. is supplied. – 30 to 40 drops of the Battleys sedative – 20 to 30 of the solution of the Acetate of Morphia – 51 of Tinct: Hyosciam: – 3 or 4 grains of Lactuca, have occasionally been tried and have answered the purpose. Her sudden and very severe pain in any part of the body, whether with or without spasms, the Morphia in the form above mentioned is on account of its immediate operation most to be relied on – but it is a medicine which on account of its debilitating effect on the stomach and ought not to be too frequently repeated. The same remedies to allay spasmodic action are also applicable & have been used for this purpose pretty successfully – and these with the pediluriem, & sinaposums to any part more violently affected than the next, I believe afford all the means we possess of allaying paroxysms. Blisters of a small size moved from one part of the head to another – where the usual means of keeping the disease in check should fail – would be advisable.

I think it only necessary here to enter into the practice of alleviation & I shall not touch upon the indications of cure. If removal from this unfavourable climate should not induce a change in the constitution favourable to subsequent treatment – little I apprehend is to be expected from Medicine.

I remain


Your Mo. Obed.t Serv.t

(signed) John Ferguson[6]

Such is D.r Ferguson’s circumstantial statement of Whitehorne’s case – and when I first read it I became much interested in the lady. On her first coming on board, she was extremely debilitated – nervous – and troubled with indigestion. The result, however, of the voyage was such as to exceed even the warmest wishes of her husband & friends. She had only one or two attacks of spasm and pain in the side – which were moreover very slight and easily yielded to the remedies alluded to by her Doctor. Her appearance soon became wonderfully improved – and her general health seemed to be completely re-established – and her appetite shared also in the change for the better. For the last four weeks of our voyage, she enjoyed good health, without a single paroxysm – such a good effect had been the sea air & the sailing upon her. With regard to her character &.c : tho’ far from being beautiful, she was pleasing and her manners were most amiable. She was of a very religious turn and distributed several tracts to our men – but her religion was not obtrusive or vainglorious – for except when religion was introduced as a subject of conversation by another she never voluntarily entered the lists as a supporter & advocate.

She read and wrote a great deal in her own cabin and from what I accidentally saw both exercises were connected with her religious opinions and feelings. In the course of conversation one day, I learnt that she had been in the practice, when her health permitted, of overlooking the education of the slaves on her husbands property. She was uniformly cheerful and lively – never sour or morose and reminded me strongly of my lamented Cousin Miss M.cK. – who did good and never let her left hand know what her right hand did to use the expressive terminology of the Bible – or according to one of our poets “who did good by stealth and blushed to find it fame.” Whitehorne had with her, the only surviving child of three, a little girl called Henrietta – and also an elderly mulatto named Sarah, who, I was told, often used to exercise the duties of our profession, among the slaves in her country.

M.r Teague & wife

Besides all these passengers, we had a M.r and Teague, whom we brought from Carthagena. Captain Teague (as he was by courtesy called) was one of the many instances in which thousands have been deceived with regard to the mines – leaving their home and friends in England, and expecting to make a fortune in a few years abroad. The history of his wanderings was this. He had been induced to one of the Columbia Mines, as a sub-agent, with a certain salary – but with a promise of immediate advancement and an augmentation of his pay. Upon arriving in Columbia, he found that he had been appointed a principal Mine Agent – but that tho’ the Company kept their promise of giving him a higher office, they neglected at the same time to increase the salary, which had been stipulated to be paid to him as sub-Agent. Notwithstanding all he could do, they were inflexible in their determination to pay him only the sum first agreed upon – and in this I think they acted with manifest injustice. M.r Teague however was contented to let matters remain as they were for some little time, intending on a future occasion to bring forwards his just claims – and in case they were not acknowledged, to resign and return home. But he left the situation sooner than he had anticipated owing to a particular cause. The Superintendent of all the mines, and M.r Teague could not agree at all in their opinions – the Superintendent wished M.r Teague to subscribe his name to a report drawn up by him in proof of his approval of it – which report was in direct contradiction to the opinion which M.r Teague himself held. He therefore strenuously refused his acquiescence in it, as he thought it was calculated to mislead the Directors and public – they quarrelled and in a moment of irritation M.r Teague threw up his post of Mine Agent, after having been only 7 months in Columbia.

From the mining district he came with his wife to Carthagena, a distance of some hundred miles – and took his passage along with us to England. He was of a very delicate constitution not at all calculated to stand long such a climate as Columbia. His manners were less subtle and as to education he had received one, which if not elegant, was solid and useful. Like many Cornish miners whom I have met, he was a Methodist and had occasionally held forth as a preacher, [which] when dressed in black, he very much resembled. He was not a cabin passenger – but I gave up my cabin to him and his wife – of whom little requires to be said. She was much stouter than her husband and indeed rather nursed or attended him than he her. When she first came on board, she was labouring under intermittent fever of the tertillian type – but it soon yielded to the use of the Quinine. During the rest of the voyage she enjoyed pretty good health.

Such is an account of all our passengers, with the exception of two distressed subjects, or poor Englishmen, whom we brought from Carthagena. The one had been twelve years in Columbia as a farrier in the army – and was returning home even poorer than he left it – the other was an Irishman and an old soldier who had accompanied his Master to South America and when he died, was forced to apply to the British Consul for a passage in our vessel to England.

Read on … Account of Expenses