Page:Paine--Lost ships and lonely seas.djvu/22

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as the stuff with which to make stout ships and the straight masts they "stepped" in them.

Nowadays, such a little craft as the Polly would be rigged as a schooner. The brig is obsolete, along with the quaint array of scows, ketches, pinks, brigantines, and sloops which once filled the harbors and hove their hempen cables short to the clank of windlass or capstan-pawl, while the brisk seamen sang a chantey to help the work along. The Polly had yards on both masts, and it was a bitter task to lie out in a gale of wind and reef the unwieldy single topsails. She would try for no record passages, but jogged sedately, and snugged down when the weather threatened.

On this tragic voyage she carried a small crew. Captain W. L. Cazneau, a mate, four sailors, and a cook who was a native Indian. No mention is to be found of any ill omens that forecasted disaster, such as a black oat, or a cross-eyed Finn in the forecastle. Two passengers were on board, "Mr. J. S. Hunt and a negro girl nine years old." We know nothing whatever about Mr. Hunt, who may have been engaged in some trading "adventure" of his own. Perhaps his kinsfolk had waved him a fare-ye-well from the pier-head when the Polly warped out of her berth.

The lone piccaninny is more intriguing. She ap-