Port Royal (2)

Friday 10th May – at 10 A.M. we anchored off Port Royal. Here we landed several passengers, of whom I shall make a very cursory mention.

M.r Thomas T. Liddal came on board our Packet and took his passage with us over to Carthagena, whither some particular business called him. I soon found out from his accent that he was a countryman, and was not long in learning from himself that he was a Glasgowegian – & that at present he was a Merchant at Havannah, which place he had lately left in order to go to Carthagena. I was highly delighted with him. Tho’ engaged in active business, his mind was not like that of so many of similarly circumstanced full only of mercantile details & ideas & without an a [sic, but ‘any’] particle of interest for any thing beyond profit & loss – but was surprisingly lively & imaginative. I have tried him on a good many points Theology, Poetry, History, &.c & I found him passably acquainted with one & all. He had a great taste for reading & it would appear that at Havannah after business hours, that was the only amusement he enjoyed. With such character as his I always find myself instructed and amused – & I always keep in mind the observation (if I mistake not of Franklin), that to converse with a man on the his [sic] particular trade or profession is a certain means of deriving much information in a pleasant & easy way.

During the time we remained at Carthagena, M.r Liddal was very busy – so busy indeed, that he managed to get all his affairs settled there & to return with us to Jamaica on his way back to Havannah. All of all [sic, but ‘us’] were extremely glad of this as we were mutually pleased with one another. Whilst we were at Kingston I was told by M.r L. that he found it impossible to get direct to his destination in consequence of the prevalence of Cholera there – & that thus he was compelled to seek a circuitous route by going to Belize in the Mexican Packet Skylark[1] where if he could not obtain a direct passage Havannah he would be compelled to go along with the Packet to Vera Cruz, & Tampico. Success follow him!

The next whom I shall speak of is a Spaniard or I should rather say, one who talks Spanish alone – being a native of Coracoa but educated entirely at Carracas. His name was by courtesy Sen: Don Jose A. Apellaniz. He was a Clerk, as I understood, to the brother of the young lady whom we took to Carthagena, & had been sent by his Master from Havannah for the purpose of escorting her in safety to her destination. He was a little thin fellow and amused us more by his actions than his words. He suffered much from sea sickness – but like all Spaniards, no sooner were the contents of the stomach ejected, than he took in a liberal supply to fill the vacuum. We left him at Kingston waiting for an opportunity to go to Havannah.

We brought again from Carthagena the young female black, named Teresa, the servant of Senora Magdalena –

The other passengers require no description being neither good, bad, nor indifferent viz. a M.rs da Costa & her boy – a M.rs Isaacs with two children & servant girl, both ladies being Jamaican Jews.

Thus I have enumerated our passengers – and have left little more to be said of our voyage. During our stay at Port Royal I generally went up to town every day and as generally returned tired exhausted at night.

Read on …