Read all about USS Rodgers' general description, specifications and time line.

Notes:

1. Latitude/longitude, including for days in port, show representative decimal positions for each day, as calculated by the Old Weather project's analysis program. As such, they differ by varying amounts from the positions recorded, usually at noon, in the log pages. In addition, some latitudes/longitudes have been amended in edited logs for errors in the logs, for errors in identifying locations by the analysis program, or simply for greater accuracy. In all cases, refer to the log-page scans for the positions as originally recorded. Not all log pages contain this information and the ships' positions have therefore often been estimated.

2. Full account of any day is available by clicking on the link above that day. Any groups of links may refer to log book covers and introductory information; some may be blank.

Editor's Notes:
All positions shown in italics are provided by the Editor.
Contemporary spellings and abbreviations are sometimes used, such as 'fiers' for 'fires', 'corvet' for 'corvette'.
~ means not deciphered


COVER PAGES

 

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OFFICER/CREW LISTS

dated 16 June 1881

Position: San Francisco

Lat 37.71, Long -122.28

 

List of Officers attached to and on board the USS Rodgers at the time of leaving the anchorage.

R. M. Berry, Lieut.

H. S. Waring, Master

C. F. Putnam, Master

H. J. Hunt, Ensign

G. M. Stoney, Ensign

M. D. Jones, P. Asst. Surg.

A. V. Zane, P. Asst. Eng.

J. D. Castillo, Asst. Surg.

W'm Gilder, Pay Clerk

H. de Tracey, Acting Carp.

Crew members on board of the USS Rodgers from 30 May to 1 December 1881. Compiled list of all names mentioned either in logbook, William Gilder's book 'Ice Pack and Tundra' or "Our Lost Explorers".

Berry, Robert M., Lieutenant

Castillo, Joaquin D., Assistant Surgeon

Gilder, William, Pay Clerk (Journalist NY Herald)

Halsey, William F., Master – hospitalized 14 June 1881

Hunt, Henry J., Ensign

Jones, Meredith D., Passed Assistant Surgeon

Putnam, Charles F., Master

Stoney, George M., Ensign

Tracey, H.P., de, Acting Carpenter

Waring, Howard S., Master

Zane, Abraham V., Passed Assistant Engineer

 

Burk, Frank (Quartermaster)

Booker, Dominick (Steward)

Bruch, Frederick (Boatswain's Mate)

Bush, Richard

Cahill, Patrick (Machinist)

Derring, W.H.

Grace, William (Cook)

Gardner, George

Hodgson, Joseph (Paymaster)

Huebner, Julius (Fireman)

Johansen, Jacob (Seaman)

Lloyd, Arthur (Fireman)

Loudon, Thomas (Seaman) 13.6.1881 from USS Pensacola

McCarthy, Owen (1st Class Fireman)

McShane, Frank (Seaman)

McShean, Charles (Seaman) promoted to Quartermaster 30.9.1881

Melms, Frank F. (Fireman)

Morelli, Robert (Cook)

Morgan, William F. (Master-at-Arms)

Morrison, S.W. (Machinist)

O'Leary, Albert (1st Class Fireman) 13.6.1881 from USS Pensacola

O'Leary, Edward (1st Class Fireman)

Petersen, Olaf F. (Fireman) 13.6.1881 from USS Pensacola

Polter, Otto (Seaman)

Quirk, Joseph F. (Carpenter's Mate)

Roach, J. (Seaman) AWOL since 9 June 1881

Rohde, William (Quartermaster) [Rohdy] disrated to seaman 30.9.1881

Schumann, Hans (Second Mate)

Smith, Fred

Smith, J. (Seaman) AWOL since 9 June 1881

Smith, William (Seaman) AWOL since 9 June 1881

Tatarenoff, Constantine 'Peter' (Dog Driver) joined crew at Petropavlovsk

'Liverpool' (Native Dog Driver) joined crew at St. Lawrence Bay on 18 or 19 August 1881

'Cockney' (Native Dog Driver) joined crew at St. Lawrence Bay on 18 or 19 August 1881

 

Total number of men on board at departure from San Francisco: 38

 

plus

 

 

who sadly went down with the ship

 

 

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List of Officers Who Died

Position: San Francisco

Lat 37.71, Long -122.28

List of Officers who died commanded by Lieut. R.M. Berry, USN during a cruise for the search of the Jeannette

Station from June 15 1881 to end of cruise Nov. 30th 1881.

Cha's F. Putnam, Master – Lost by drifting to sea on floe of ice out of St. Lawrence Bay Siberia Jan 11th, 1882

 

 

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Complement

COMPLEMENT of Petty Officers, Seamen, Ordinary Seamen, Landsmen, Boys, and Marines on board of the USS Rodgers at first commissioning May 30th 1881

Master at Arms 1

Machinists 3

Pay. Yeoman 1

Blacksmith 1

Capts of Forecastle 2

Capts of Tops 4

Quarter Masters 4

Carpenter's Mate 1

Ships Cook 1

Cabin Steward 1

Cabin Cook 1

First Class Firemen 3

Seamen 3

 

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THE VOYAGES OF USS RODGERS 1881
(More detailed plots follow in the text)

JP map overview

(Maps prepared using Journey Plotter, developed by Maikel. The Plots can only be approximate. They are made by joining-up positions on successive days, and sometimes positions are not given. There will therefore be occasions when the ship appears to have travelled overland)

LOGS FOR MAY 1881

 

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30 May 1881

Position: Mare Island Navy Yard

Lat 38.09, Long -122.27

In the presence of the Captain of the yard, Commanding Officer and crew broke the pennant and put the ship into commission.

 

Editor's note: The whaler 'Mary and Helen' was renamed 'Rodgers', after R. Adm. John Rodgers, the president of the Jeannette Relief Board, and commissioned under the command of Lieutenant Robert M. Berry. Among the volunteer crew were William Gilder and Frank Melms. Both men have accompanied Frederick Schwatka's expedition of 1878-80. Gilder, a correspondent of the New York Herald, wrote a detailed report about the cruise of the Rodgers. His book 'Ice Pack and Tundra' provided much of the information that is absent in the logbook.

 

The Rodger's primary mission was to conduct a search for the USS Jeannette and the lost whalers Vigilant and Mount Wollaston in the area of Wrangel Island and a stretch along the Siberian coast. The whalers were last seen in fall 1879 off Point Barrow, Alaska. The second task was to chart the region of Wrangel Island, still deemed part of a greater landmass extending further to the north, and nearby Herald Island. Before they could begin with their search they had to resupply at Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia, and replenish coal at St. Michael, Alaska.

 

The Jeannette expedition under the command of Lieutenant George DeLong attempted to reach the North Pole, but got stuck in the ice near Wrangel Island in 1879. The Jeannette drifted 500 nautical miles to the westward before she was crushed by the ice on 12 June 1881 and sank on the next day. Now the crew began their long trek across the ice, hauling sleds and boats for hundreds of miles towards the Siberian coast. Only about one third of them survived. Before their departure from San Francisco DeLong announced that he would leave cairns with information either on Wrangel Island or the nearby Herald Island if possible, making these islands the obvious starting point for the search of the Rodgers. However, the Jeannette wasn't able to reach these islands.

 

 

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31 May 1881

Position: Mare Island Navy Yard

Lat 38.09, Long -122.27

No weather readings taken yet

Receiving stores and provisions on board.

 

 

LOGS FOR JUNE 1881

 

 

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1 June 1881

 

Position: Mare Island Navy Yard

Lat 38.09, Long -122.27

Receiving stores on board. Constructors gang at work about ship.

 

 

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2 June 1881

Position: Mare Island Navy Yard

Lat 38.09, Long -122.27

Receiving stores and provisions on board.

 

 

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3 June 1881

Position: Mare Island Navy Yard

Lat 38.09, Long -122.27

Receiving stores on board.

 

 

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4 June 1881

Position: Mare Island Navy Yard

Lat 38.09, Long -122.27

Receiving stores provisions and coal on board.

 

 

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5 June 1881

Position: Mare Island Navy Yard

Lat 38.09, Long -122.27

Lying alongside Navy Yard wharf

 

 

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6 June 1881

Position: Mare Island Navy Yard

Lat 38.09, Long -122.27

Full weather recordings commence at 1am

Commencing and until 4am: Lying at wharf Navy Yard. Pleasant weather light airs from South-South-West.

4 to 8am: Making preparations for hauling out in steam. Getting stores on board.

7.00am: Started fiers. [fires]

7.40am: Began hauling out to buoy. Pleasant weather light fresh breeze from South-South-West.

8.10am: Made fast to buoy.

9.30am: Spread fiers.

10.10am: Started ahead. Slipped from buoy under charge of pilot

11.15am: Sighted US Flag Ship 'Pensacola', made ship number. Flag ship returned her number. Standing down bay under pilot

Meridian to 4pm: Clear and pleasant with fresh breeze from the South-West by South. Under way standing down bay in charge of pilot. Set fore and aft sails when they would draw. Set all fore and aft sails.

3.30pm: Came to anchor off San Francisco, with port anchor, in 5 fathoms water. Veering to 15 fathoms on chain. Soft bottom. Took in and furled all fore and aft sails.

4 to 6pm: Riding to ebb tide. Appearance of rain. Light airs from South-West by South. Ships draught 15 feet 6 inches forward, 16 feet 10 inches aft.

6 to 8pm: Riding to ebb tide. Light air from South-West by South.

8pm to Midnight: Riding to wind. Raining and disagreeable. Light airs from the southward.

 

 

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7 June 1881

Position: San Francisco Cal

Lat 37.71, Long -122.28

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast and raining whole watch. Light South-South-East breeze, hauling to southward and westward. Barometer steady at 30.00.

4 to 8am: Overcast. Raining during first hour. Clearing off and barometer rising after 6am. West by South breeze. Ebb tide.

8am to Meridian: Fine weather. South-West breeze. Engaged in setting up standing rigging. Barometer steady at 30.00.

Meridian to 4pm: Clear and pleasant with fresh breeze from South-West. Ship riding to the wind

4 to 6pm: Clear and pleasant. Fresh breeze from the South-West. Ship riding to the wind.

6 to 8pm: Clear and pleasant. Fresh breeze from the South-West. Ship riding to the wind.

8pm to Midnight: Clear and pleasant. Light breeze from the South-West

 

 

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8 June 1881

Position: San Francisco Cal

Lat 37.71, Long -122.28

Commencing and until 4am: Clear and pleasant; light westerly wind, bright star light.

4 to 8am: Clear and pleasant. Light variable winds.

8am to Meridian: Overcast and pleasant. Steady barometer. Received on board for transportation to Fort St Michaels, Alaska, five (5) boxes from the US Signal Corps office, and one (1) box addressed to Petropaulowski, Russia. [Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky]

Meridian to 4pm: Pleasant weather. South-West breeze. Steady barometer. Received on board in Equipment department eighty nine (89) cases of coal oil, two (2) cases of glass ware + two (2) barrels of glass ware.*

4 to 6pm: South-West breeze. Steady barometer. Sent liberty party ashore.

6 to 8pm: South-West breeze. Steady barometer.

8pm to Midnight: West-South-West breeze. Steady barometer. Closed clear and pleasant.

Editor's note: *It was not uncommon to transport glassware in barrels of molasses to prevent damage.

 

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9 June 1881

Position: San Francisco Cal

Lat 37.71, Long -122.28

Commencing and until 4am: Day opened clear and pleasant, with light West-South-West breeze and slightly falling barometer. The following men were absent without leave viz: J. Roach (sea), Wm Smith (sea) J. Smith (1st cF) O. Polter sea.

4 to 8am: Pleasant. Light breeze from West. Barometer falling slightly.

8am to Meridian: Light airs and light breeze from West by South and South-West. Barometer steady. Received stores in equipment department. O. Polter returned aboard.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to strong breeze from South-West. Barometer falling slightly.

4 to 6pm: Blowing fresh from West-South-West. Barometer steady.

6 to 8pm: Blowing fresh from West-South-West. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Fresh breeze from West-South-West. Barometer rising.

 

 

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9 June 1881

Duplicate pages

 

 

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10 June 1881

Position: San Francisco Cal

Lat 37.71, Long -122.28

Commencing and until 4am: Blowing fresh from West-South-West.

1.30am: Ship commencing to drag veered to 30 fathoms and brought up.

4 to 8am: Light to moderate breeze from West-South-West to West. Pleasant weather. Barometer steady.

8am to Meridian: Overcast and pleasant, fresh breeze from West-South-West to South-West. Got under way and shifted anchorage, using jib and spanker. The following men absent without leave, viz;, W. Roach (sea), J. Smith (sea), Wm. Smith (sea).

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast and pleasant. Light breeze from the West-South-West. Got up steam and shifted anchorage. Received on board 1500 lbs of bagging.

4 to 6pm: Overcast and pleasant, cold. Wind from the West-North-West.

6 to 8pm: Overcast and pleasant, cold. Wind from the West-North-West.

8pm to Midnight: Overcast and cold. Light variable wind.

 

 

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11 June 1881

Editor's note: Dated as 10 June

Position: San Francisco Cal

Lat 37.71, Long -122.28

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast and cold. Light breeze from the West to West-South-West.

4 to 8am: Overcast and pleasant. Light breeze from the West-South-West.

8am to Meridian: Light breeze from West-South-West. Barometer falling slightly. Found out that the stores had come from New York were in bad condition. Commanding Officer ordered a board of survey and the detailed report will be appended.

Meridian to 4pm: Fresh breeze from West-South-West. Barometer falling slightly. Received on board 1 box containing clothes for officers. Also several boxes of sheep skin clothing.

4 to 6pm: Blowing fresh from West-South-West. Barometer steady.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from West-South-West. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Light airs and light breeze from West by South and West-South-West. Barometer steady.

 

 

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12 June 1881

Position: San Francisco Cal

Lat 37.71, Long -122.28

Commencing and until 4am: Clear and pleasant, West-South-West breeze. Barometer steady 30.16. Cirrus clouds.

4 to 8am: Weather fair. Barometer steady at 30.14. Cirrus clouds.

8am to Meridian: Clear and pleasant. South-West breeze. Rising barometer.

Meridian to 4pm: Clear and pleasant. West-South-West breeze. Barometer 30.16.

4 to 6pm: Moderately fresh breeze from West-South-West. Barometer falling. Cirrus clouds.

6 to 8pm: Moderately fresh breeze from West-South-West. Barometer falling.

8pm to Midnight: Closed pleasant. West-South-West breeze. Barometer 30.05. Cirrus clouds.

Editor's note: This page bears an arrow pierced heart in the top right hand corner.

 

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13 June 1881

Position: San Francisco Cal

Lat 37.71, Long -122.28

Commencing and until 4am: Fresh breeze to light air from South-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer falling.

4 to 8am: Light airs from the South-South-West. Misty around horizon.

8am to Meridian: Light air from South-South-West first hour of watch. Light breeze from the West-North-West remainder of watch. Engaged in receiving stores on board.

Meridian to 4pm: Fresh breeze from the South-South-West. Clear and pleasant. Finished receiving aboard. Great many ladies visited the ship.

4 to 6pm: Fresh breeze from the South-West. Clear and pleasant.

6 to 8pm: Fresh breeze from the South-West. Clear and pleasant.

8pm to Midnight: Pleasant. South-West breeze. Rising barometer. Stratocumulus clouds. Misty horizon. Received on board with bag and hammock, by transfer from USS Ship 'Pensacola' the following men viz: O. L. Peterson (sea), T. Louden (sea), Albert O'Leary (1st c.F.). Ensign H. J. Hunt returned on board ship from duty at Navy Yard Mare Island, Cal.

Editor's note: On this day the Jeannette sunk after being severely damaged by ice floes on the previous day

 

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14 June 1881

Position: San Francisco Cal

Lat 37.71, Long -122.28

Commencing and until 4am: Began overcast and cloudy, with fresh breeze from South-West, moderating after 2am. Barometer steady at 30.04. Stratocumulus clouds.

4 to 8am: Overcast. Rising barometer. South-West breeze.

8am to Meridian: First part of watch fresh breeze from South-West. From 9 to 11am stiff breeze from West-South-West. From 11 to 12m stiff breeze from the West. Received fresh provision aboard. Revenue cutter came alongside.

Meridian to 4pm: Stiff breeze from the West. Clear but misty around horizon. Master Wm F. Halsey, USN, was sent to hospital at Mare Island Cal, by order of Commanding Officer on recommendation of medical jury. Ship dragged at 3.30pm. Veered to 30 fathoms on port chain.

4 to 6pm: Fresh to moderate breeze from West-South-West. Clear and pleasant. Hove in to 15 fathoms on port chain.

6 to 8pm: Fresh to moderate breeze from West-South-West. Clear and pleasant.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate breeze to light air from West-South-West to West by South. Clear and pleasant, misty around horizon.

 

 

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15 June 1881

Position: San Francisco Cal

Lat 37.71, Long -122.28

Commences and until 4am: Light variable airs from southward and westward. Misty around horizon.

4 to 8am: Light variable airs from the southward and westward. Misty around horizon.

8am to Meridian: Clear and pleasant. Light variable airs. Barometer rising slightly. Cirrus clouds.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate South-West breeze. Falling barometer. Cirrus clouds.

4 to 8pm: Moderate West-South-West breeze. Barometer falling slightly. Cirrus clouds.

8pm to Midnight: Clear and pleasant. Light breeze from West-South-West first two hours, hauling to South-West last two. Barometer steady at 30.08 until last hour when it rose to 30.10. Cirrus clouds.

 

 

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16 June 1881

Position: San Francisco Cal

Lat 37.71, Long -122.28

Commences and until 4am: Clear and pleasant. Light breeze from South-South-West hauling to westward. Barometer steady at 30.10. Cirrus clouds.

4 to 8am: Light South-West breeze. Pleasant weather. Barometer steady. Cirrus clouds.

8am to Meridian: Light airs to fresh breeze West to West-South-West. Made all preparation for going to sea. Master C. F. Putnam USN reported on board for duty. Many people visited ship.

Meridian to 4pm: Stiff breeze from West-South-West.

3.00pm: Called "All hands up anchor". Hove up anchor and stood out of harbor, in charge of pilot, accompanied by several steamers. Great many people were on the dock to witness our departure. We were cheered by all. Made all preparations for sea. Secured every thing, boats etc. Steamer left for the city. Draught of ship: Forward 14 ft 10in. Aft 17 ft 9 in.

4 to 8pm: Moderate breeze from West-South-West. Clear and pleasant. In charge of pilot, standing out of harbour.

7.30pm: Pilot left ship. Changed course and made all plain sail to top gallant sails. Close hauled on starboard tack.

8pm to Midnight: Weather clear and cool. Light to moderate breeze from North-West by West.

8.30pm: Took departure. Point Bonita Light bore North by East 1/2 East (pc) distant 6 miles.

9.30pm: Stopped engine, blew down boilers and hauled fires.

Midnight: Farallon Light bore one point forward of starboard beam. Heavy swell from the westward.

 

Editor's note: On the same day when the Rodgers had left San Francisco, the USS Alliance left Norfolk, Virginia, to conduct a search for the crew of the Jeannette in an area to the north of Spitsbergen, in the case that they have successfully reached the North Pole and took the shorter route to either Greenland or Spitsbergen instead of returning to Wrangel Island. After an unsuccessful search the Alliance returned to New York in November after having reached 80 degrees 10' N on 21 August 1881.

 

 

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17 June 1881

Position: at sea

Lat 37.69 Long -123.00 Farrallon Light Station at 4am.

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Editor's note: No further position given until they reach the Aleutian Islands on 10 July

Commences and till 4am: Fresh wind from North-West by West. Steady barometer. Cirrus clouds. Moderate sea.

4.00am: Farallon Light bore broad off starboard quarter.

4 to 8am: Stiff and fresh breeze from North-West by West. Clear and pleasant. Rough sea. Wind coming in puffs.

8am to Meridian: Weather clear and pleasant. Fresh North-West wind. Rough sea.

10.00am: Set upper topsails.

Meridian to 4pm: Clear and pleasant. Fresh North-West breeze. Steady barometer. Cirrocumulus clouds.

4 to 6pm: Fresh and stiff breeze from North-West by North. Clear and pleasant. Barometer steady.

6 to 8pm: Cloudy and squally. Fresh North-West squalls. Cumulus clouds.

8pm to Midnight: Squally. Fresh breeze from North-North-West. Barometer steady at 30.10. Cirrocumulus clouds.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000f8d (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0024__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000f8e (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0024__1.jpg)

 

18 June 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commences and till 4am: Fresh breeze to moderate gale from the North-North-West. Overcast and pleasant. Barometer falling.

4 to 8am: Cloudy and squally. Wind fresh from North-West by North. Rough sea. Steady barometer.

8am to Meridian: Squally. Overcast and cloudy. Fresh breeze from North-West by North. Barometer rising. Moderate sea.

8.20am: Set mainsail and main topgallant sail.

9.20am: Took in spanker.

11.20am: Set fore topgallant sail.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to stiff breeze from North-West by North. Squally. Overcast and pleasant. Barometer rising.

4 to 6pm: Cloudy and squally. Moderate breeze from North-West by North.

5.40pm: Took in main sail to a squall and at 5.50 reset it. Heavy sea from North-West.

6 to 8pm: Overcast and cloudy. Moderate breeze with occasional puffs from North-West by North. Rain squalls around the horizon. Barometer steady at 30.20.

8pm to Midnight: Light airs to gentle breeze from the North-West. Except last hour from the North-West by West. Threatening all the watch. Light rain squalls during first two hours of watch.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000f8f (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0025__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000f90 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0025__1.jpg)

 

19 June 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commences and till 4am: Weather cloudy but pleasant. Light breeze from North-West by West. Occasional moderate squalls.

4 to 8am: Cloudy. Pleasant. Light breeze from North-West by North. Barometer steady. Smooth sea.

5.00am: Set royals and flying jib.

6.00am: Set spanker, gaff topsail, mizzen topsail, staysail and main topgallant staysail.

8am to Meridian: From 8 to 9am light to gentle breeze from West by North. From 9 to 10 light airs from North-West to westward. From 10 to 11 light to gentle breeze from North-West by West. From 11 to 12 light to gentle breeze from North-West. Clear and pleasant.

Meridian to 4pm: Clear and pleasant. Light breeze from North-West by West. Smooth sea.

4 to 6pm: Clear and pleasant. Passing rain squalls. Light North-West breeze. Steady barometer. Smooth sea.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from North-West by North. Clear and pleasant.

8pm to Midnight: Clear and pleasant first part; cloudy latter part of watch. Wind light from northward to westward. Smooth sea.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000f91 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0026__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000f92 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0026_1.jpg)

 

20 June 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commences and till 4am: Light North-West breeze. Passing rain and wind squalls.

1.00am: Hauled up main sail.

2.00am: Set main sail.

4 to 8am: Light airs and gentle breeze from northward and westward. Passing rain squalls.

5.00am: Took in all light sails and main sail for passing squalls.

5.30am: Set all light sail.

8am to Meridian: Weather clear. Light breeze from northward and westward. Smooth Sea.

Meridian to 4pm: Cloudy but pleasant. Light breeze from the North. Rising barometer. Cirrocumulus clouds. Smooth sea.

1.00pm: Started fires.

3.20pm: Started ahead under sail and steam. Hauled up courses, ~ the foot ropes on foot of sails for chafe and reset them.

4 to 6pm: Light breeze from the North, overcast and pleasant.

5.10pm: Stopped engine to key up.

5.15pm: Started engine ahead.

6 to 8pm: Weather pleasant. Light airs from northward. Smooth Sea.

7.30pm: Took in and furled all square sail.

8pm to Midnight: Pleasant. Light breeze from North by West.

11.00pm: Set the fore sail.

Midnight: Furled the fore sail. Closed pleasant.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000f93 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0027__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000f94 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0027__1.jpg)

 

21 June 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commences and till 4am: Clear and pleasant. Light breeze At Light and gentle breeze from North by West. Clear and pleasant.

1.25am: Moonrise

4 to 8am: Weather clear and pleasant, light airs from North by West.

5.30am: Hauled up foresail, broke out sail room and stored kerosene in it. Smooth sea.

8am to Midnight: Clear and pleasant, light airs and calms.

11.00am: Hauled down fore and aft sails.

Meridian to 4pm: Light airs from West by North. Clear and pleasant. Braced yards around sharp up starboard braces. Sighted full rigged ship on port beam. Standing North on port tack.

4.15pm: Commenced to swing ship, finished at 5.55.

5.00pm: Stopped engine to key up. Clear and pleasant light West-North-West breeze. Smooth sea.

6 to 8apm: Clear and pleasant, light West-North-West airs and calms. Steady barometer. Smooth sea.

8pm to Midnight: Light airs to light breeze from the North. Clear and pleasant.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000f95 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0028__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000f96 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0028__1.jpg)

 

22 June 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commences and till 4am: Clear and pleasant. Light West-South-West breeze.

12.10am: Set fore and aft sail.

1.50am: Moonrise

4 to 8am: Cloudy, pleasant West-South-West breeze light and hauling to southward. Barometer steady.

5.00am: Set gaff topsail.

7.00am: Set foresail.

8.00am: Set mainsail.

8am to Meridian: Light to gentle breeze from South-West to West-South-West. Passing rain squalls from South-West to West-South-West first part of watch, clear and pleasant at end of watch.

9.00am: Set all sail to royals.

Meridian to 4pm: Cloudy with light passing rain squalls last half of watch. Wind light from West-South-West. Smooth sea.

2.40pm: Took in royals and flying jib.

3.00pm: Set them again.

4 to 6pm: Moderate breeze from West by South, cloudy. Steady barometer. Cirrocumulus clouds.

6 to 8pm: Moderate breeze from West by South. Passing rain squalls. Barometer falling. Smoky looking weather.

8pm to Midnight: Cloudy with passing rain. Smooth sea.

8.30pm: Took in royals, flying jib and main and mizzen topgallant staysails.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000f97 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0029__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000f98 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0029__1.jpg)

 

23 June 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commences and till 4am: South-West breeze with passing wind and rain squalls. Barometer falling. Overcast. Barometer falling. Nimbus clouds.

4 to 8am: Gentle to moderate breeze from South-West by West. Passing rain squalls.

7.00am: Hauled fires and stopped engine.

7:20am: Sighted bark on port beam standing to the northward. Cloudy weather.

8am to Meridian: Light breeze from West first part and West by North afterwards. Passing rain squalls. Exchanged colors and G.M.T. with English bark standing to the northward.

Meridian to 4pm: Light breeze from West by North, hauling to the northward. Barometer steady. Cumulus clouds.

2.00pm: Talked ship to southward and westward.

4 to 6pm: Light to gentle breeze from the North-West. Cloudy to windward and sun occasionally visible. Barometer rising.

6 to 8pm: Light North-West breeze. Light passing squalls with rain. Smooth sea.

8pm to Midnight: Light airs from North-West and calm. Overcast, cloudy and drizzling. Steady barometer. Smooth sea.

10.00pm: Hauled up courses.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000f99 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0030__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000f9a (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0030__1.jpg)

 

24 June 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commences and till 4am: Calm first three hours of watch. Light airs to light breeze from South-West from 3 to 4am.

1.20am: Hauled down staysails and squared main yards.

3.00am: Wove ship and stood on port tack. Barometer steady.

4 to 8am: Wind light from South-West first part and from West-South-West latter part of watch. Light passing rain squalls. Smooth sea.

8am to Meridian: Light South-South-West breeze. Barometer steady. Cirrocumulus clouds.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle to stiff breeze from South-South-West. Weather cloudy and misty around the horizon.

3.40pm: Braced in with port braces. Barometer steady.

4 to 6pm: Cloudy and squally. Fresh breeze from South-West by West.

6.00pm. Took in royals, gaff topsail and flying jib. Smooth sea.

6 to 8pm: Fresh breeze from South-West by South.

7.30pm: Took in spanker. Barometer steady. Moderate sea.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate to stiff breeze from South-West by South. Overcast and dirty weather.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000f9b (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0031__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000f9c (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0031__1.jpg)

 

25 June 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commences and till 4am: Strong South-West wind. Moderate sea. Barometer falling. At took [sic!] in upper topsails and jib. Rain squalls during latter part of watch.

4 to 8am: Strong South-West by South breeze. Barometer steady at 30.06. Moderate sea.

4.30am: Set upper topsails.

6.00am: Set topgallant sails and jib.

8am to Meridian: Stiff to fresh breeze. First part of watch dirty weather, last of watch clear and pleasant.

Meridian to 4pm: Fresh South-West by South breeze. Moderate sea. Overcast. Steady barometer.

4 to 6pm: Fresh breeze from South-West by South. Moderate sea. Steady barometer. Cumulonimbus clouds.

6 to 8pm: Fresh breeze from West-South-West. Cloudy weather with mist around horizon. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Fresh West by South breeze, moderating towards end of watch. Moderate sea. Weather overcast.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000f9d (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0032__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000f9e (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0032__1.jpg)

 

26 June 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Moderate West-South-West breeze. Fresh squalls during second hour.

1.00am: Set topgallant sails.

2.10am: Took in topgallant sails.

3.00am: Reset them. Barometer rising. Overcast and cloudy. Nimbus clouds. Moderate sea.

4 to 8am: Moderate to fresh breeze from West-South-West. Squally weather and cloudy to windward. Reduced sails and topsails for passing squalls. Set them soon as squall over. Set royals during watch and found wind too heavy to carry them. Barometer rising.

8am to Meridian: Fresh West by South breeze, cloudy and squally first part of watch, clear and pleasant afterwards. Moderate sea.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to fresh breeze from West-South-West hauling to northward. Slightly squally during second hour. Barometer rising. Moderate sea.

12.45pm: Set main topgallant staysail, royals and flying jib.

4 to 6pm: Fresh to stiff breeze from the West. Clear and pleasant. Ship working beautifully.

6 to 8pm: Clear first part, overcast afterwards. Wind fresh from West first hour, West by South afterwards. Squally. Moderate sea.

8pm to Midnight: Squally. Steady barometer.

10.00pm: Took in and furled topgallant sails. Very brilliant comet* in sight to the northward and eastward. Commanding Officer shifted course to West. Ship full and by on port tack.

10.30pm: Hauled down and furled mizzen top staysail.

11.00pm: Hauled up mainsail, hauled down jib and furled them.

Editor's note: *Comet Tebbutt c/1881 K1, 'the great comet of 1881'

 

500dc366cd0db40002000f9f (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0033__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fa0 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0033__1.jpg)

 

27 June 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Fresh to moderate breeze from the West. Overcast most of the watch. Very brilliant comet visible to the North.

4 to 8am: Moderate breeze from West. Squally.

6.30am and 7.00am: Took in topgallant to squall. Reset them when squall passed.

8am to Meridian: Moderate breeze with passing rain squall. Rising barometer. Cumulus clouds.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to stiff breeze from the West. Overcast and cold. Cloudy with the sun occasionally visible. Ship rolling easily. Water filled with animal life. Barometer falling last hour of watch.

4 to 6pm: Cloudy and cold. Fresh breeze from West. Moderate sea. Squally with passing rain.

5.30pm: Took in royals and flying jib to squall.

5.45pm: Reset them when squall passed.

6 to 8pm: Moderate breeze from West. Barometer falling. Occasional squalls.

8 to Midnight: Moderate to stiff breeze from West. Cloudy and cold. Took in topgallant sail and mainsail to squall, reset them after squall. Barometer steady. Squally weather.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fa1 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0034__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fa2 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0034__1.jpg)

 

28 June 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Fresh breeze from West by North. Weather overcast and squally with passing rain. Moderate sea.

4 to 8am: Squally from North-West. Falling barometer. Took in and reset topgallant sails several times during the watch.

6.00am: Set main topgallant staysail.

7.45am: Wove ship to southward and westward.

8am to Meridian: Moderate to fresh breeze from North-West to West-North-West. Partially overcast and cold. Dirty looking to windward. Flying scud coming from the northward and westward. Took in spanker. Barometer steady. Long sea.

Meridian to 4pm: Fresh breeze from West-North-West. Weather squally. Cloudy occasionally clear spot. Fresh squalls with rain at intervals. Took in topgallant sail to squall at 2.10, 2.40 and 3.20 and reset them when squalls passed. Moderate sea.

4 to 6pm: North-West by West breeze with frequent fresh squalls. Barometer 30.20. Took in and reset topgallant sails several times.

6 to 8pm: Moderate to fresh breeze from North-West. Cloudy and squally. Dirty to windward. Barometer rising. Took in topgallant sails.

8pm to Midnight: Overcast raining and squally. Wind fresh from North-West. Moderate sea.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fa3 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0035__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fa4 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0035__1.jpg)

 

29 June 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Moderate breeze with occasionally fresh squalls during first two (2) hours. Steady and hauling a little to the northward after 2am.

1.30am: Hauled down mizzen top staysail.

2.30am: Reset it.

3.00am: Set topgallant sail and main topgallant staysail.

4 to 8am: Moderate to gentle breeze from the North-West by West to North-West. Overcast and cold. Clouds steady and hard looking. Set royals and flying jib. Barometer rising.

8am to Meridian: Wind moderate to light variable in direction from West-North-West to West by South. Smooth sea. Cloudy with pouring rain.

10.45am: Started fiers.

Meridian to 4pm: Light South-West by South breeze freshening and hauling to southward. Steady barometer at 30.44. Sky overcast. Smooth sea.

Noon: Took in and furled all square sails.

1.00pm: Started ahead under steam and fore and aft sails on course West.

2.00pm: Set fore sail.

4 to 6pm: Gentle breeze from the South-West by South. Overcast and pleasant.

6 to 8pm: Overcast and raining.

6.35pm: Shortened and furled all sails. Wind light from West-South-West to West. Moderate sea.

8pm to Midnight: Freshening breeze from West by North. Barometer rising. Foggy during first three hours of watch. Comet in sight to the northward during last hour. Smooth sea. Ship under steam alone.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fa5 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0036__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fa6 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0036__1.jpg)

 

30 June 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Light to gentle breeze from West by North. Foggy and dirty weather. Few stars visible first hour of watch. Comet visible first hour of watch bearing (p.c.) North. Barometer falling.

4 to 8am: Moderate breeze from West first three hours of watch and from West by South last hour. Thick fog first two hours overcast and misty afterwards. Smooth sea. Several fur seals were observed near the ship.

8am to Meridian: Moderate West by South breeze. Barometer rising. Overcast and foggy. Fog lifted at noon permitting noon observation.

11.00am: Kept ship off to North-West by North and set all fore and aft sails which increased her speed from 2.4k to 3.4k. Broken sea.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle breeze from West by South. Clear and pleasant. Broke out and cleaned fore passage. Barometer steady. Bent and set mizzen topmast staysail.

4 to 6pm: Wind moderate from West by South. Clear and pleasant first part. Foggy last part of watch. Smooth sea.

6 to 8pm: Moderate breeze from West by South. Clear and pleasant last part of watch. During first hour foggy. Clear sunset. Barometer steady. Smooth sea.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle breeze from West by South. Overcast and very foggy. Barometer steady.

 

 

THE VOYAGES OF HMS RODGERS
Unalaska to St. Michael, Alaska

JP map Rodgers South

LOGS FOR JULY 1881

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fa7 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0037__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fa8 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0037__1.jpg)

 

1 July 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Moderate West by South breeze. Weather overcast and foggy. Smooth sea. Long swell from westward.

4 to 8am: Light breeze from West. Barometer rising. Overcast and foggy. Smooth sea.

6.00am: Tacked ship to southward and westward.

8.00am: Furled sails and steamed ahead on course West.

8am to Meridian: Light breeze from West-South-West. Overcast and foggy. Very dirty weather. Long sea from the South-West. Ship rolling easily.

Meridian to 4pm: Light South-West breeze.

1.00pm: Set fore and [aft] sails. Foggy. Sea smooth.

4 to 6pm: Freshening breeze from South-West. Foggy. Steady barometer.

5.00pm: Made all sail and stood away to West-North-West 1/2 West.

6 to 8pm: Moderate breeze from South-West by South. Foggy dirty weather. Long sea from South. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate breeze from South-West first two hours, hauling to West by South third hour and to West last hour of watch. Foggy first part cloudy overhead last hour. Smooth sea.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fa9 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0038__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000faa (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0038__1.jpg)

 

2 July 1881

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Foggy. Light breeze from West. Barometer steady.

12.10am: Tacked ship to southward and westward.

4 to 8am: Gentle breeze from West to North-North-West. Foggy and wet.

4.30am: Wind shifted from West by North and hauled to North-North-West. Barometer rising.

8am to Meridian: Light North-North-West breeze first part, shifting to North-East last hour. Foggy, clear last hour.

11.45am: Braced in. Smooth sea.

Meridian to 4pm: Light breeze from East at beginning of watch. Freshening and hauling to southward. Engaged during watch in breaking out and stowing fore hold.

12.30pm: Hauled up mainsail, took in spanker, flying jib and staysails and squared away before the wind.

2.00pm: Barometer fell suddenly from 30.64 to 30.58 and wind shifted from East-South-East to South-South-East. Foggy. Smooth sea.

3.00pm: Set flying jib and mainsail, spanker and gaff topsail and braced up by starboard braces. At close of watch ship going large on port tack.

4 to 6pm: Moderate breeze from the South. Foggy dirty weather. Barometer steady.

6 to 8pm: Fresh South by West breeze. Foggy.

7.00pm: Commenced distilling. Smooth sea. Barometer falling rapidly.

8pm to Midnight: Fresh breeze from South-South-West. Barometer falling and wind increasing.

8.00pm: Took in and furled royals and flying jib.

9.00pm: Hauled down and stowed main topgallant and mizzen topmast staysail.

10.30pm: Hauled up mainsail. Took in and furled topgallant sails.

 

Editor's note: Ship hit 8 knots at 5pm and 9 knots from 7 to 10pm.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fab (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0039__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fac (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0039__1.jpg)

 

3 July 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Stiff breeze to moderate gale from South-West to West. Blowing hard at intervals. Barometer falling rapidly first half hour of watch remained steady for two hours and commenced to rise. Ship labouring hard. Distilling.

1.30am: Took in jib and main topmast staysail.

3.40am: Took in upper topsail.

3.55am: Wove ship.

4 to 8am: Strong wind from North first two hours hauling to North by West and North-North-West last two hours. Weather cloudy. Rough sea. Barometer rising rapidly. Distilling.

8am to Meridian: Fresh breeze from North-West by North. Moderating and hauled a little to the westward.. Barometer rising. Sky overcast. Long swell from the Northward.

9.20am: Set jib, main top staysail, main topgallant staysail, mizzen top staysail, fore topgallant sails and mainsail.

10.00am: Set flying jib and spanker. Distilling.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate breeze to light air from West-North-West to North-West by West. Overcast and pleasant.

3.00pm: Took in all square sails and stood on course West. Barometer steady. Clouds steady and threatening looking.

4 to 6pm: Light North-West by West breeze. Weather cloudy. Smooth sea.

6 to 8pm: Light North-West by West breeze. Steady barometer. Sky overcast. Sea smooth.

8pm to Midnight: Light air from North-West first hour, calm remainder of watch. Overcast and threatening. Barometer steady. Hauled down all fore and aft sails.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fad (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0040__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fae (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0040__1.jpg)

 

4 July 1881

Position: at sea

Lat: 41.50 at sunrise

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Light air from West by North. Cloudy. Smooth sea.

3.30am: Set jib

4 to 8am: Light air from the North. Working to the eastward and finally setting down to a gentle breeze from East. Barometer steady at 30.72. Sky overcast. Took amplitude at sun rise North 41 degrees 30' East. Ship head (pc) West.

4.30am: Set fore and aft sail.

6.00am: Made all square sail except mainsail and hauled down all fore and aft sail except jib. Hoisted the ensign at daylight.

8am to Meridian: Gentle breeze from East. Overcast and pleasant. Clouds steady and hard looking.

Meridian to 4pm: Light to moderate breeze from East. Smooth sea. Cloudy.

3.40pm: Changed course to West-North-West and braced up by port braces. Set flying jib and spanker, gaff topsail and lee clew of mainsail.

4 to 6pm: Moderate breeze from East. Steady barometer. Smooth sea.

6 to 8pm: Moderate breeze from East-South-East to South-East. Overcast and pleasant. Braced up with starboard braces.

8pm to Midnight: Weather cloudy. Moderate to fresh breeze from South-East. Weather cloudy but pleasant. Smooth sea.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000faf (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0041__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fb0 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0041__1.jpg)

 

5 July 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast, foggy and cloudy. Raining during 3rd hour. Fresh breeze from South-South-East hauling to southward. Barometer falling. During the watch ship logged 11 knots under all steam and sail.*

2.00am: Took in royals to light squall. Reset them.

3.00am: Set all staysail.

4 to 8am: Stiff breeze from South. Foggy and wet. Barometer falling.

8am to Meridian: Fresh South-West breeze. Thick foggy weather.

9.15am: Changed course to West by North.

9.20am: Stopped engine and banked fiers. Commence distilling. Moderate sea increasing toward end of watch. Barometer falling.

Meridian to 4pm: Fresh breeze from South by West. Fog and drizzling rain throughout watch.

1.00pm: Hauled down main topgallant and mizzen top staysail. Barometer fell .08, remaining steady at 30.08.

4 to 6pm: Stiff to fresh breeze from the South. Foggy and raining. Barometer steady.

6 to 8pm: Moderate breeze from South by West to South-South-West. Foggy and raining. Rough sea.

8pm to Midnight: South-South-West breeze. Falling barometer. Overcast and raining. Nimbus clouds.

Editor's note: *And the ship could hold steady 9-10 knots from midnight to 4pm according to columns.

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fb1 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0042__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fb2 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0042__1.jpg)

 

6 July 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Moderate breeze from the South-West to West by South. Overcast and cold. Took in all sails. Barometer steady.

4 to 8am: Moderate West-South-West breeze. Cloudy with rain at intervals.

4.30am: Set all fore and aft sail, except gaff topsail and changed course to full and by.

7.00am: Set gaff topsail. Large heavy squall from South-West.

8am to Meridian: Fine weather. Rising barometer. Moderate West-South-West breeze. Cirrostratus clouds.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from West by South. Overcast and pleasant. Sun visible occasionally. Sea moderate. Gaff topsail out haul carried away. Took in the sail, rove new gear on set sail. Barometer steady.

4 to 6pm: Wind moderate from West by South. Heavy swell from West-South-West. Weather cloudy.

6 to 8pm: Moderate West-South-West breeze. Steady barometer. Long swell from South-West.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate breeze from West-South-West. Overcast and cold. Heavy swell from South-West. Barometer steady. Comet visible for a short time bearing (p.c.) North.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fb3 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0043__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fb4 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0043__1.jpg)

 

7 July 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Moderate to light breeze from South-South-West to South-West. Cloudy and cold. Long swell from West-South-West.

4 to 8am: Overcast and cloudy. Drizzling rain during the second and third hour. Light South-South-West breeze, freshening and hauling to southward. Barometer falling slowly.

4.30am: Made all square sail and took in main trysail.

8am to Meridian: Moderate breeze from South to South-South-West. Overcast and foggy. Braced sharp up with starboard braces. No observation at noon. Sea going down. Barometer steady.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate breeze from South-South-West to South-West by South. Cloudy and foggy first part. Misty afterwards. Smooth sea.

4 to 6pm: Light South-West breeze. Steady breeze. Smooth sea.

6 to 8pm: Stiff breeze from South-West to South-West by South. Overcast and cold. Registered mercurial barometer from 8pm.

8pm to Midnight: Fresh breeze from South-West with a moderate sea. Wind and sea increasing toward midnight. Weather cloudy.

9.00pm: Took in and furled royals and flying jib.

9.40pm: Took in and furled topgallant sails, main topgallant staysail, mizzen top staysail and gaff topsail and spanker.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fb5 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0044__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fb6 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0044__1.jpg)

 

8 July 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing: Strong breeze from South-South-West. Increasing to strong gale at close of watch.

12.00am: Hauled up and furled mainsail.

1.00am: Hauled down and stowed jib.

3.00am: Took in and furled upper topsail. Heavy sea running.

4 to 8am: Fresh breeze to strong gale from the South-West to South-West by South. Clear and pleasant. Very heavy sea from South-South-West. Barometer unsteady. Ship laboring very hard. Shipping great many seas.

8am to Meridian: Fresh South-West gale with heavy sea. Weather clear and cold.

10.00am: Took in and furled foresail and brailed up spanker.

10.05am: Wove ship to southward and eastward and brought by on starboard tack.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate gale from South-West. Heavy sea. Rising barometer. Cumulonimbus clouds.

4 to 6pm: Stiff to fresh breeze from South-West by South. Partially overcast and pleasant. Sea moderating. Barometer falling.

6 to 8pm: Fresh breeze South-West by South first hour. South-West by West last hour of watch. Partially clear first hour, cloudy afterwards. Sea rough, moderating toward end of watch.

8.00 to Midnight: Moderate breeze from West-South-West. Rising barometer. Cumulonimbus clouds.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fb7 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0045__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fb8 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0045__1.jpg)

 

9 July 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Moderate breeze from West-South-West. Overcast and pleasant. Cleared up between 2 and 3am. Comet visible in the North. Very dim.

4 to 8am: Light westerly breeze. Weather cloudy. Long swell from West-South-West.

8am to Meridian: Overcast first two hours and pleasant last two hours. Light West by South breeze. Steady barometer. Smooth sea.

9.30am: Tacked ship to northward and westward.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from South-West by West to South-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising. Smooth sea.

6 to 8pm: Clear and pleasant. Light West-South-West breeze. Steady barometer. Smooth sea.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle to moderate breeze from West-South-West to South-West by West. Clear and pleasant. Bright moon light.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fb9 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0046__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fba (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0046__1.jpg)

 

10 July 1881

Position: at sea

Lat 53.50, Long -166.40 approximate position – bearing line to peak of Mount Makushin given at 2.20 am, assuming distance of 30 nm

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Clear and pleasant. Light breeze from West-South-West to South-West by West.

2.20am: Sighted highest peak of Ounalaska [Mount Makushin on Unalaska Island] bearing (p.c.) North-West by North. Smooth sea.

4 to 8am: Light South-West by West breeze. Barometer steady. Clear sky. Smooth sea.

8am to Meridian: Light breeze from South-West by West. Clear and pleasant, but hazy around horizon. Land in sight along starboard beam. Under steam.

Meridian to 4pm: Light South-West by West breeze. Clear and pleasant. Smooth sea. Land in sight along starboard bow and beam during watch.

4 to 6pm: Light South-West by West breeze. Steady barometer. Cirrocumulus clouds. Smooth sea.

4.40pm: Changed course to South-West and at 5.30 to West-South-West again by order of Commanding Officer.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from South. Clear and pleasant. Barometer unsteady.

8pm to Midnight: Clear and pleasant. Light airs from South. Ounalaska Isld. and the Islands of Four Mountains in sight during watch.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fbb (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0047__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fbc (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0047__1.jpg)

 

11 July 1881

 

Position: at sea

Lat 52.50, Long -172.00 Amukta Pass at noon

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Commenced pleasant with light airs from South-East.

1.30am: Light breeze sprung up from East-South-East freshening and hauling to eastward.

2.00am: Made all plain sails to topgallant sails. Land all along starboard beam. Overcast and drizzling rain during last hour of watch.

4 to 8am: Moderate to stiff breeze from East. Overcast and raining. Very dirty and raining. From 4 to 5am land in sight on starboard beam and quarter.

5.00am: West end of of Younanska Island [Yunaska Island] bore (p.c.) North-West by North distance about 15 miles. Changed course to South-West by West 1/2 West. Took in flying jib.

6.49am: By order of Commanding Officer changed course to South-West by West.

7.00am: Passed through a chopping sea; resembling the sea seen on a bank. The water had a peculiar color, having every appearance of shoal water. Got a cast of lead, no bottom at 17 fathoms. Barometer falling very rapidly.

8am to Meridian: Foggy and raining. Fresh breeze from East to South-East. Standing through Amoukhta Pass.

8.20am: Changed course to North-West by West.

10.50am: Changed course to West.

11.50am: Sighted Seguam Island on port bow. Moderate sea in the channel. Large patch of floating kelp.

Meridian to 4pm: Pleasant light breeze from North.

2.00pm: Passed out from under lee of land, got a fresh breeze from South by East and wove around on port tack.

2.40pm: Set mainsail, main top staysail and mizzen top staysail.

3.00pm: Stopped steaming and hauled fiers. Set flying jib to ease the helm. Changed course to West by South by order of Commanding Officer.

4.00pm: Made a high peak on port beam bearing (p.c.) South 25 West.

4 to 6pm: Moderate breeze from South by West to South-South-West. Overcast and pleasant. Land in sight on port bow and beam.

6.00pm: Changed course to West.

6 to 8pm: Cloudy. Fresh southern breeze.

8.00pm: Cape Sevennai* bore (p.c.) South-West 5/8 West. Smooth sea.

8pm to Midnight: Pleasant. Moderate breeze from South during first hour. Breeze lessening, falling calm at 10.00. Ship fell off to North-North-East and light air came out from West. Braced round on starboard tack. Light air came out from North. Chappeled ship and headed course at 11.

Editor's note: *Possible misspelling of Mys Severnyj or North Cape on Akta Island.

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fbd (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0048__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fbe (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0048__1.jpg)

 

12 July 1881

Position: at sea

4.00am: Wind force 0. No steerage way

Lat 52.50, Long -174.50 approximate position N of Akta Island – bearing line to North Cape (?) given at 4am

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Light air from South-East to South-West. Overcast and pleasant. Very high air, the light sail would be full and the courses becalmed.

3.10am: Wove ship.

4.00am: Cape Severnoi [Editor's note: see 11. July at 8pm] bore (p.c.) South-East by East.

4 to 8am: Cloudy. Light variable airs and calm. Smooth sea.

8am to Meridian: Cloudy but pleasant. South-South-East breeze.

8.45am: Started fiers.

11.00am: Started ahead under steam. Barometer falling. Smooth sea.

Noon: Changed course to West 1/2 South.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from South to South-South-East.

4.00pm: Partially overcast and pleasant. Island bore (p.c.) South by East. Barometer falling.

4 to 6pm: Light South-South-East breeze. Weather clear and pleasant. Smooth sea.

6 to 8pm: Clear and pleasant. Light airs from South-South-East.

7.00pm: Fell calm, with occasional light airs from North-East. Shortened and furled sails.

8pm to Midnight: Light air from South by East. Overcast and raining last hour of watch. Set all plain sails to royals. Barometer falling.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fbf (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0049__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fc0 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0049__1.jpg)

 

13 July 1881

 

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast and foggy with rain last hour. Light variable airs and calm. Smooth sea.

2.30am: Hauled up mainsail.

4 to 8am: Overcast, cloudy and raining the during the whole watch. Light variable airs, working all around the compass. Rising barometer. Nimbus clouds. Braced around the yards several times.

4.30am: Hauled up courses and clewed down royals.

5.30am: Reset royals and foresail.

8am to Meridian: Light variable air. Overcast and raining. Took in all square sails.

Meridian to 4pm: Light variable air and calm.

1.30pm: Hauled down fore and aft sails. Foggy and raining. Smooth sea.

4 to 6pm: Freshening breeze from South-West by West. Barometer falling. Smooth sea. Raining throughout the watch.

5.00pm: Set fore and aft sails and headed West.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from West by South. Overcast, foggy and raining. Took in fore and aft sails. Barometer falling.

8pm to Midnight: Light breeze from South-West by South to South-West by West. Foggy and raining, smooth sea.

9.20pm: Made all fore and aft sail.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fc1 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0050__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fc2 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0050__1.jpg)

 

14 July 1881

Position: at sea

Long 180.00

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Editor's note: While no exact position is given, Gilder mentioned that they have passed the 180th meridian on this day. To avoid confusion the date wasn't changed though, because the ship would cross the date line several times. It should also be mentioned that after the Alaska Purchase of 1867 the date line was congruent with the 180th meridian in the Arctic Ocean and the Bering Sea, which is running through Wrangel Island. With the International Date Line this is no longer the case.

 

In Gilder's own words: 'Thursday, the 14th of July, we crossed the 180th meridian, and were in east longitude. Here is where the mariner takes up one day when sailing toward the west, or drops one if going east. As we return in a few days and re-cross the same meridian, we would have to make two changes in our calendar, but Lieutenant Berry concluded that we might as well retain our old reckoning. The only difference it made is that we found the religious people of Petropaulovski holding service on Saturday instead of Sunday, and we are constantly in doubt as to whether to-day is really to-day or to-morrow. And yet this constantly dropping and taking up a day every time we cross the 180th meridian, would make it exciting for us in case of wintering on Wrangel Land, as that meridian passes directly through the island; so that we would be constantly crossing and re-crossing it, involving ourselves and our journals in the most inextricable confusion. We could not go hunting and reach the hunting-grounds until the next day, no matter how short the time occupied in the journey, and, in returning, would always arrive the day before we started. No well-balanced mind could exist under such circumstances.'

http://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/21/mode/1up

Commencing and until 4am: Light breeze from South-West by West. Steady barometer, until last hour when it fell .09. Smooth sea. Overcast and hazy around horizon.

4 to 8am: Gentle breeze from South by West to South-South-West. Overcast and pleasant. Barometer falling.

8am to Meridian: Light South by West breeze. Overcast and hazy with fog at times.

9.20am: Made all plain sail. Smooth sea.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate South-West by South breeze. Falling barometer. Cumulus clouds. Foggy during greater part of watch. Sea smooth.

4 to 6pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from South-South-West. Overcast and pleasant. Barometer very unsteady.

6 to 8pm: Light to moderate breeze from South-South-West. Cloudy and hazy. Smooth sea.

8pm to Midnight: Overcast and drizzling rain during the whole watch. Moderate breeze from South by East. Cumulus clouds. Smooth sea.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fc3 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0051__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fc4 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0051__1.jpg)

 

15 July 1881

 

Position: at sea

Lat 52.80, Long 173.20 near Massacre Bay on Attu Island at noon

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Gentle to moderate breeze from East-North-East to North-East by East. Very foggy and wet. Braced yards as wind hauled. Hauled down main top and mizzen top staysail. Barometer steady.

4 to 8am: Moderate breeze from North-East by East first part hauled gradually to North and North-North-West. Overcast and foggy. Smooth sea.

6.30am: Set weather clew of mainsail and mizzen topmast staysail, main topgallant staysail.

8.00am: Sighted land on port beam.

8 to Meridian: Foggy. Light North-North-West breeze hauling to westward.

10.15am: Fog lifted, disclosing Attou Island on port bow. Changed course to South by East and at 11.30 to South-West passing to the southward of the island. Fixed the position of a reef extending from the South-East point of Attou Island. 2.5 miles direction (p.c.) South 71 East (not marked on chart).

Meridian to 4pm: Calm from 1 to 3pm. Light air from North-West last hour of watch. Clear and pleasant.

1.00pm: Changed course to West-South-West.

3.00pm: Changed course to West 1/4 South. Bearings at time (pc) Viz Rock at West end of Attou Island North 50 degrees W, East end of Attou Island North 47 degrees East. Running between the Islands Attou and Aghatou during the entire watch. At end of watch; West end of Attou Island bore (pc) North-West 1/2 North. Highest peak of Aghatou Island bore (pc) East-South-East.

4 to 6pm. Moderate North-West breeze. Cloudy weather. Long swell from southward.

5.00pm: Changed course to West by South.

5.30pm: Fog set in Attou and Agattou Islands.

6 to 8pm. Light West-North-West breeze. Rising barometer. Long swell from northward and westward.

8 to Midnight: Light to gentle breeze from North-West to North-West by West. Foggy and drizzling rain first three hours of watch. Overcast and pleasant last hour. Barometer steady. Long swell from southward.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002000fc6 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0052__1.jpg)

 

16 July 1881

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Light West-North-West breeze first three hour. West by North last hour. Overcast with fog first part. Long swell from southward.

4 to 8am: Light West-North-West breeze. Steady barometer. Overcast during whole watch. Smooth sea.

8am to Meridian: Light breeze from West to West by South. Overcast and pleasant. No latitude and longitude at noon. Barometer steady.

Meridian to 4pm: Light West-South-West breeze. Easy swell from southward. Weather cloudy.

4 to 6pm: Overcast and cloudy. Light West-North-West breeze, hauled to northward. Barometer rising. Smooth sea.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from West by South. Foggy and cold. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Light breeze from West by South first three hours and from South-West by West last hour. Weather overcast and foggy. Clear overhead at intervals last hour.

10.40pm: Stopped engine to key up.

11.45pm: Set fore and aft sail. Smooth sea.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002000fc8 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0053__1.jpg)

 

17 July 1881

 

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast and foggy. South-West breeze. Smooth sea. Barometer rising.

3.00am: Made all sail excepting mainsail and kept ship full and by on West-North-West 1/2 West.

4 to 8am: Gentle to moderate breeze from South-West to South-South-West. Foggy and pleasant.

5.00am: Took in all square sails.

8am to Meridian: Moderate breeze from South-South-West to South by West. Cloudy with fog around horizon. Smooth sea.

9.00am: Made all sail.

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast and foggy. Moderate breeze from South. Barometer steady. Long swell from southward and westward.

2.30pm: Changed course to West 1/2 North by order of Commanding Officer.

3.00pm: Took in gaff topsail.

4 to 6pm: Moderate to stiff breeze from South. Foggy and raining. Barometer steady.

6 to 8pm: Fresh South by East breeze. Overcast and drizzling rain. Moderate sea. Barometer falling.

8pm to Midnight: Overcast and raining during the whole watch. Moderate breeze from South by East. Falling barometer. Moderate sea.

10.00pm: Banked fiers.(sic)

Editor's note: Ship maintained steady 8 knots from 11 am to midnight. Hit 9 knots twice.

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fc9 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0054__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fca (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0054__1.jpg)

 

18 July 1881

 

Position: at sea

From San Francisco to Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia

Commencing and until 4am: Moderate to light breeze from South to South-West. Raining from midnight to 3am. Foggy remainder of watch.

1.00am: Spread fiers.

1.40am: Started ahead under steam and sail.

3.30am: Took in all square sails.

4 to 8am: Light South-West breeze. Overcast and foggy. Long swell from southward. Furled all square sails.

8am to Meridian: Overcast and foggy, drizzling rain during last hour.

10.00am: Hauled down fore and aft sails.

Meridian to 4pm: Light air from North. Foggy and ~.

12.30pm: Changed course to West by North. Passed great many whales.

4 to 6pm: Light airs from northward and calm. Overcast, raining and foggy.

6 to 8pm: Light North-East breeze. Barometer rising.

7.45pm: Loosed all sails. Set topsails.

8pm to Midnight: Light to moderate breeze from North-East by East. Overcast and raining.

10.25pm. Changed course to West-North-West 1/2 West. Set all square sails to royals. Took in spanker and gaff topsails.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002000fcc (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0055__1.jpg)

 

19 July 1881

Position: at sea

Noon to 6pm: Changed course – work into land, working into harbour.

Lat 53.00, Long 158.70

Reaching Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky

Commencing and until 4 am: Moderate East-North-East breeze. Overcast and raining. Moderate sea.

0.40am: Brought by the wind on port tack, with main topsail to the mast. Took in main and mizzen top staysails, main topgallant staysail, flying jib and royals. Hauled up courses and set spanker. Banked fiers.

3.10am: Filled away set foresail and royals. Took in spanker.

4 to 8am: Foggy. Moderate breeze from North by East. Barometer falling.

7.00am: Took in and furled royals.

8 to Meridian: Gentle breeze from North by East. Foggy and cold.

11.00am: Sighted land on starboard bow and ahead. Took in all sails and stopped engine in order to determine position. Standing off and on until noon. Got cast of lead in 52 fathoms. No noon observation.

12.20pm: Got cast of lead in 52 fathoms.

12.40pm: Pyramid Point bore (pc) South 1/4 East. Fifth point to northward of Pyramid Point bore (pc) West-North-West 1/2 West. Set course North by East 1/2 East and started ahead under steam.

3.30pm: Sighted Brothers ['Three Brothers' or 'Kamni Tri Brata'] bearing (p.c.) North 1/2 West standing in to entrance of Avatcha Bay. Foggy. Calmed and light variable airs.

4 to 6pm: Foggy. Falling barometer. Light South-South-East breeze. Standing in for Petropaulovski in conn of Commanding Officer. General course North-North-West.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from South-South-East. Foggy and raining. Working into the harbor. Piloted by Captain.

7.00pm: Mate of 'Alexander' came aboard and piloted ship to anchorage.

7.15pm: Came to with port anchor in 5 fathoms of water veering to 30 fathoms of chain. Bearing from anchorage (pc) church spire in city North. Center building of Alaska Fur Company building South-West by West. Hauled fiers. Governor of Kamchatka visited ship. All so boarding officer from Russian man-of-war 'Strelock'.

8pm to Midnight: Light air from South-South-East. Foggy and raining.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002000fce (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0056__1.jpg)

 

20 July 1881

Position: at Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky

Lat 53.00, Long 158.70

Commencing and until 4am: Calm. Overcast and foggy.

4 to 8am: Light air from North by East. Foggy and raining at intervals.

8am to Meridian: Light variable air from South-South-East to South by West. Overcast and raining.

Meridian to 4pm: Calm. Overcast and drizzling rain. Commanding Officer paid official visit to the Governor and the Russian Man-of-War "Strelock".

4 to 8pm: Calm. Cloudy weather. Granted liberty to starboard watch.

8pm to Midnight: Calm and cloudy.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fcf (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0057__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fd0 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0057__1.jpg)

 

21 July 1881

Position: at Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky

Lat 53.00, Long 158.70

Commencing and until 4am: Calm. Overcast and pleasant.

4 to 8am: Light airs and calm. Master C.F. Putnam left the ship with working party to secure dogs. Took two boats with provisions for two (2) days.

8 to Meridian: Light breeze from North. Engaged in restowing deck load of lumber.

Meridian to 4pm: Light to moderate breeze from North-West. Engaged as previous watch.

4 to 8pm: Same a previous watch.

8 to Midnight: Day closed clear and pleasant. Light North-West breeze. Steady barometer.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fd1 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0058__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fd2 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0058__1.jpg)

 

22 July 1881

 

Position: at Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky

Lat 53.00, Long 158.70

Commencing and until 4am: Light airs and calm. Rising barometer. Pleasant weather.

4 to 8am: Engaged during the watch in restowing deck load and cleaning ship. Weather same as previous watch.

8am to Meridian: Pleasant weather. Number of visitors on board from the Alaska Fur Co., steamer 'Alexander' and Russian Man-of-war.

Meridian to 4pm: Pleasant. Light breeze from North-East to North by East. Barometer rising.

2.45pm: Master Cha. F. Putnam with party returned on board. Received on board 22 trained dogs.

4 to 8pm: Light breeze from the North first 2 hours. Calm last two. Weather pleasant. Received on board a quantity of dried salmon for dog food.

8pm to Midnight: Calm. Steady barometer. Cirrocumulus clouds. Pleasant weather.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fd3 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0059__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fd4 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0059__1.jpg)

 

23 July 1881

 

Position: at Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky

Lat 53.00, Long 158.70

Commencing and until 4am: Pleasant and calm. Barometer steady. Cirrocumulus clouds.

4 to 8am: Calm and pleasant. Barometer falling slightly. Crew engaged in shifting and restowing deck load.

8 to Meridian: Light airs from North-West and calm. Working party on shore for wood and water. At noon working party returned.

Meridian to 4pm: Calm and pleasant. Steady barometer. Sent working party on shore. Received on board a quantity of skin clothing and dried salmon. The latter for dog food. Six head of cattle. 22 train dogs. Six cords of wood. Received full tanks of fresh water.

4 to 8pm: Calm and pleasant. Finished securing deck load as follows, viz., in the waist is stowed as follows, eleven thousand feet of lumber, six (6) cords of wood piled to a height of eight feet amidships, tapering to a little below the rail on each side, extending from the main hatch aft, forward to the deck house. Abaft of the lumber, on each side on the main hatch, are the dog pens. Forward of the lumber on the port side the cutter, on the starboard, the spare rudder and water casks. The decks are completely choked up, only room enough next to the pipe and fife rails to belay the ropes.

8pm to Midnight: Overcast and cloudy, but pleasant weather. Calm with steady barometer. Cir-Nim clouds.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fd5 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0060__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fd6 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0060__1.jpg)

 

24 July 1881

Position: at Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky

Lat 53.00, Long 158.70

Commencing and until 4am: Clear and pleasant. Calm. Cirrocumulus clouds. Steady barometer.

4 to 8am: Clear and pleasant. Calm.

7.00am: Started fiers.

9.00am: Hauled fiers and emptied boilers to repair a leak.

8 to Meridian: Calm. Received on board fresh ~ (600lbs).

Meridian to 4pm: Light breeze from South-South-East.

2.00pm: Started fiers.

4.00pm: Got underway and steamed out of port.

4 to 8pm: Clear and pleasant. Light South-South-East breeze. Steady barometer.

7.45pm: Set course East-North-East 1/2 East.

7.50pm: Took departure of Petropaulovski. Lighthouse bore (p.c.) North by West 1/2 West distance of 4 miles.

8pm to Midnight: Light air to light breeze from East. Overcast and pleasant. Hazy around horizon. Barometer steady.

Editor's note: Captain de Livron, commanding officer of the Strelok, offered to join their search for the missing ships. Upon their return from St. Michael the Rodgers was supposed to meet the Strelok at Plover Bay, but was delayed. They met the Strelok at St. Lawrence Bay instead, but after their departure they lost sight of the Strelok at Cape East and they didn't see the ship again.

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fd7 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0061__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fd8 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0061__1.jpg)

 

25 July 1881

 

No position given

From Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia to St. Michael, Alaska

Commencing and until 4am: Light breeze from the East. Cloudy and pleasant. Smooth sea.

4 to 8am: Light breeze from the East. Overcast and cloudy. Steady barometer. Land in sight along port beam. Cumulus clouds.

8am to Meridian: Light airs to light breeze from East-North-East to North-East. Overcast and raining first 2 hours of watch. Pleasant remainder.

10.00am: Changed course to North-East 1/2 North. Set fore and aft sails, but would not draw. Left them up today.

Meridian to 4pm: Light breeze from North to North-East. Cloudy but pleasant. Hauled down fore and aft sails. Smooth sea.

4 to 6pm: Light North-North-East breeze. Barometer rising. Cirrocumulus clouds. Overcast but pleasant.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from the North. Overcast but pleasant. Barometer rising.

8pm to Midnight: Light breeze from North-North-East to North-East. Weather cloudy but pleasant. Swell from North-East.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fd9 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0062__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fda (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0062__1.jpg)

 

26 July 1881

No position given

From Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia to St. Michael, Alaska

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast and cloudy during first and last hours. Clear and pleasant rest of watch. Barometer falling. Light breeze from North by West to North by East. Set all fore and aft sails.

4 to 8am: Light breeze from North by East to North-East by East. Overcast but pleasant. Hauled down all fore and aft sails.

8.00am: Land bore (pc) North-West by North.

8am to Meridian: Light airs from North-East and calms. Weather cloudy but pleasant.

10.00am: High Peak in sight on port beam. Smooth sea.

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast and cloudy. Steady barometer. Smooth sea.

1.00pm: Set fore and aft sails. Light airs from East to East by South.

4 to 6pm: Light airs from East. Overcast but pleasant. Smooth sea.

6 to 8pm: Light airs from East by South. Cloudy but pleasant weather. Smooth sea.

8pm to Midnight: Light airs from East and calm. Overcast but pleasant. Barometer falling.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fdb (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0063__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fdc (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0063__1.jpg)

 

27 July 1881

 

No position given

Lat 55.30, Long 166.30 approximate position at 4pm

From Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia to St. Michael, Alaska

Commencing and until 4am: Light air to light breeze from East. Overcast but pleasant.

4 to 8am: Light breeze from East-South-East to South-East. Pleasant weather.

6.00am: Sighted Behring Island on starboard bow. Center of western part bearing (pc) East 3/4 North. Made all square sails except mainsail.

7.28am: Changed course to East-North-East.

8am to Meridian: Clear and pleasant. Light South-East breeze; hauling to South-South-East after 10am. Barometer steady. Smooth sea.

Meridian to 4pm: Light airs to light breeze from South-East by East to South-East. Clear and pleasant.

4.00pm: Highest peak on Behring Island bore (pc) South 1/4 East distance between 15 and 18 miles. Also high land bore (p.c.) North-West by West.

4 to 6pm: Light South-East breeze. Clear and pleasant. Smooth sea.

6 to 8pm: Light airs from East-South-East. Barometer 29.96. Smooth sea.

8.00pm: Changed course to North-East 1/4 East by order of Commanding Officer.

8pm to Midnight: Light airs from East-South-East. Overcast but pleasant. Smooth sea.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fdd (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0064__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fde (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0064__1.jpg)

 

28 July 1881

 

Position: at sea

From Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia to St. Michael, Alaska

Commencing and until 4am: Cloudy but pleasant. Light airs from East-South-East and calm.

0.30am: Took in mainsail and mizzen topmast staysails.

3.30am: Reset them.

4 to 8am: Calm and light airs from East-South-East. Light breeze from North-West after 6am. Barometer steady. Smooth sea.

8am to Meridian: Light airs to light breeze from South to South-East. Overcast but pleasant. No observation at noon. Commenced serving out lime juice to each man aboard ship. Each man to take daily one ounce. To be taken in the presence of the officer of the deck. By order of the Commanding Officer.

Meridian to 4pm: Cloudy. Light airs from South to South by West. Smooth sea.

3.00pm: Hauled down mizzen topmast staysail.

4 to 6pm: Cloudy. Light breeze from South. Barometer steady.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from the South. Overcast but pleasant. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Cloudy but pleasant. Light airs from South-South-West.

11.00pm: Stopped engine to key up.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fdf (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0065__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fe0 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0065__1.jpg)

 

29 July 1881

Position: at sea

From Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia to St. Michael, Alaska

Commencing and until 4am: Cloudy. Light South-South-West breeze, hauled to West last hour. Steady barometer.

4 to 8am: Light airs to light breeze from West-South-West to South-West. Overcast but pleasant.

6.00am: Commenced distilling. Barometer steady.

8am to Meridian: Light airs and variable from South-West to West-North-West. Cloudy but pleasant. Easy sea from North-West.

Meridian to 4pm: Light breeze from West. Cloudy. Smooth sea. Barometer falling. Ship under all sails and steam.

4 to 6pm: Gentle breeze from the West. Overcast and cold. Distilling.

6 to 8pm: Moderate breeze from West. Weather cloudy. Distilling.

8pm to Midnight: Cloudy. Light to moderate breeze from West. Smooth sea. Closed pleasant.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fe1 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0066__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fe2 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0066__1.jpg)

 

30 July 1881

Position: at sea

From Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia to St. Michael, Alaska

Commencing until 4am: Gentle to moderate breeze from West-North-West. Overcast but pleasant. Distilling. Barometer steady.

4 to 8am: Moderate West-North-West breeze. Cloudy and cold.

7.30am: Set weather clew of mainsail.

7.50am: Stopped distilling. Smooth sea.

8am to Meridian: Moderate breeze from West-North-West. Rising barometer. Smooth sea.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle breeze from North-West. Overcast but pleasant.

Noon: Changed course to North-East 1/4 North. Barometer steady.

4 to 6pm: Light North-West breeze. Cloudy. Smooth sea.

6 to 8pm: Cloudy. Light North-West by North breeze. Steady barometer.

7.00pm: Fell calm with occasional light airs from North-North-West. Hauled up courses. Took in royals and topgallant sails.

8pm to Midnight: Calm. Overcast and hazy around horizon. Took in and furled all square sails. Barometer steady.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fe3 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0067__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fe4 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0067__1.jpg)

 

31 July 1881

Position: at sea

From Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia to St. Michael, Alaska

Commencing and until 4am: Calm and cloudy.

2.00am: Hauled down fore and aft sails. Smooth sea. Barometer falling.

4 to 8am: Clear and pleasant. Calm first hour. Light breeze sprung up from East.

6.00am: Set fore and aft sails.

7.00am: Breeze hauled ~ ~ to the southward. Made all sails. Close haul on starboard tack.

8am to Meridian: Gentle breeze to light airs from East-South-East to South-East by East. Overcast but pleasant. Near noon the sun was visible for a short while.

Meridian to 4pm: Light airs from North-East to East-North-East. Cloudy and hazy. Smooth sea.

12.40pm: Took in all square sails and furled them.

12.45pm: Changed course to North-East by North.

3.00pm: Took in all fore and aft sails.

4 to 6pm: Overcast and cloudy. Light airs from North-East. Barometer rising. Smooth sea.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from North-East by North. Overcast but pleasant.

8pm to Midnight: Cloudy and misty. Light airs from North-East by North to North-East by East.

 

 

LOGS FOR AUGUST 1881

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fe5 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0068__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fe6 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0068__1.jpg)

 

1 August 1881

Position: At sea

From Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia to St. Michael, Alaska

Commencing and until 4am: Cloudy and pleasant. Light breeze from North by West.

1.30am: Set fore and aft sails.

3.00am: Breeze freshened and hauled to westward. Made all sails.

3.30am: Wind hauled to West by North. Took in all square sails.

4 to 8am: Light to gentle breeze from North to North by West. Overcast and cold. Barometer steady.

8am to Meridian: Weather overcast and drizzling rain. Light North by West airs. Calm last hour.

Noon: Changed course to North-North-East 3/4 East.

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast and calm. Barometer steady. Cumulonimbus clouds. Smooth sea.

4 to 6pm: Light airs from North-North-West. Overcast and raining. Barometer falling.

6 to 8pm: Overcast and drizzling rain. Light North by West airs. Smooth sea.

8pm to Midnight: Light air to gentle breeze from North by West to West. Overcast with little blue sky last hour. Drizzling rain first hour.

11.00pm: Set all square sails. Barometer falling.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fe7 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0069__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fe8 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0069__1.jpg)

 

2 August 1881

Position: At sea

Lat 63.00, Long -169.00 approximate position at 3.45 pm

From Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky, Russia to St. Michael, Alaska

Commencing and until 4am: Light air from West to West-South-West. Partially overcast and pleasant.

4 to 8am: Clear and pleasant. Light breeze from West-South-West first two hours and from West afterwards. Smooth sea.

8am to Meridian: Warm and clear, with light West breeze hauling West-South-West.

9.30am: Changed course to North-North-East 1/4 East by order of Commanding Officer.

10.00am: Barometer steady. Smooth sea. Land in sight on port bow.

Meridian to 4pm: Light breeze from the South-West. Clear and pleasant. Between 3 and 4pm temperature of water at surface dropped 4 degrees from 48 degrees to 44 degrees . Barometer steady.

3.45pm: South-East cape bore (p.c.) South 70 degrees West. East cape North 5 degrees East. Passing St. Lawrence Island; distance 7 to 9 miles.

4 to 6pm: Clear and pleasant. Light South-West breeze.

5.10pm: Changed course to North-East by East and at 6pm to North-East 3/4 North.

6.00pm: North Punuk Island bore (p.c.) North-West 1/4 North distance 3 miles.

6 to 8pm: Clear and pleasant weather. Light Southern breeze. Steady barometer. Cirrocumulus clouds. Smooth sea.

8pm to Midnight: Light breeze from South to South by East. Clear and pleasant. Set spanker, gaff topsails and all staysails. At end of watch North-East portion of St. Lawrence Island bore (p.c.) West-South-West.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fe9 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0070__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fea (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0070__1.jpg)

 

3 August 1881

Position: At sea

Lat 63.50, Long -162.10

Reaching St. Michael, Alaska

Commencing and until 4am: Clear and pleasant. Light South-South-East breeze. Smooth sea.

4 to 8am: Clear and pleasant weather. Light South-East breeze. Hauling to eastward and freshening at 6am.

6.00am: Took in gaff topsail to ease helm.

7.00am: Noticed appearance of shoal water, sounded and found 7 fathoms. Shoal water extended a mile, sounding showing respectively 7, 7, 9, 9, + 13 fathoms.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to moderate breeze from South-East by East. Clear and pleasant. Taking sounding at 15 minute intervals; depth varying from 13 to 9 fathoms. Gray sandy bottom. Water showing considerable difference in temperature as per column.

Meridian to 4pm: Got cast of lead at 1.30 in 9 fathoms. At 2 in 9 3/4 fathoms. At 3 in 9 3/4 fathoms. At 3.30 in 9 3/4 fathoms. At 4 in 9 3/4 fathoms. Gray sandy bottom. Clear and pleasant first part squally, cloudy with passing showers latter part of watch. High lump of land one point forward of port beam.

1.40pm: Took in and furled all square sails. Set spanker.

2.00pm: Changed course to East by North.

4 to 6pm: Overcast cloudy and squally. Moderate to fresh breeze from South-East. Steady barometer.

4.30pm: Made all plain sail to topgallant sails, except mainsail, and all fore and aft sail.

5.45pm: Changed course to East-North-East 1/4 East by order of Commanding Officer.

6.00pm: Took in spanker and mizzen top staysail to ease the spanker.

6 to 8pm: Moderate breeze from South-East by South. Overcast with rain squalls. Water still showing great difference in temperature.

7.20pm: Stuart Island was sighted in horizon, bearing (pc) North-East by East. Got cast of lead at half hour intervals. 9 fathoms water. Gray mottled sand.

8pm to Midnight: Wind fresh from South-East first two hours and from South-South-East afterwards. Overcast with passing rain. Occasional sharp squalls.

9.00pm: Took in and furled all square sails and changed course to East by North.

10.30pm: Made Egg Island 1/2 point on starboard bow.

10.50pm: Took in fore and aft sails, hauled up to wind and anchored in lee of Stuart Island in 9 fathoms of water; Sticky mud bottom. Veered to 36 fathoms at water edge on starboard chain. Strong tide setting East-North-East. Ship riding to tide. Banked fiers.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000feb (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0071__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fec (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0071__1.jpg)

 

4 August 1881

Position: At anchor St Michaels Bay

Lat 63.50, Long -162.10

Commencing and until 4am: Moderate breeze from South-South-East. Barometer falling. Smooth sea.

4 to 8am: Moderate to stiff breeze from South. Foggy with rain squalls.

5.20am: Commencing heaving up anchor.

6.00am: Got under way. Standing up for St. Michael.

8.15am: Came to off North-East end of Stuart Island in 3 fathoms water. Black mud bottom. Veering to 15 fathoms on starboard chain.

11.10am: Got under way and stood in for St. Michael. Wind from South until 11 o'clock when it hauled to South-South-West blowing in fresh squalls. Fore and aft sail set when it would draw.

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast and drizzling. Light to moderate South-South-West breeze. Rising Barometer. Smooth sea. Standing in for St. Michaels.

2.20pm: Came to in 3 1/2 fathoms water. Veering to 15 fathoms on starboard chain. Sent a boat with officer to sound out harbor, and planting buoys to work ship higher up harbor.

4 to 8pm: Light South-South-West breeze. Barometer falling towards close of watch. Sky overcast. Nimbus clouds. Long sea.

8.20pm Got underway and stood half mile nearer the trading post. Anchored with starboard. Anchored in 3 1/4 fathoms water, veering 15 fathoms chain.

Editor's note: Unable to get closer to the trading post than a 3/4 mile they had to transport the coal with a lighter instead. This delayed their departure for several days.

http://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/48/mode/1up/

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fed (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0072__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000fee (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0072__1.jpg)

 

5 August 1881

Position: At anchor St Michaels Bay

Lat 63.50, Long -162.10

Commencing and until 4am: Light airs from South-West first 2 hours. Calm remainder. Overcast and raining.

4 to 8am: Calm to light airs from West. Overcast. Raining first two hours.

8am to Meridian: Light breeze from West-South-West. Overcast and pleasant. Engaged in coaling ship. Sent lighter ashore in tow of whale boat.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate breeze from West-South-West. Overcast and pleasant. Lighter returned and discharged 162 bags of coal.

4 to 6pm: Light to gentle breeze from West-South-West. Overcast and pleasant. Sent lighter in tow of whale boat for coal.

6 to 8pm: Gentle breeze from South by West. Overcast and pleasant. Lighter returned and discharged 187 bags of coal.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle to stiff breeze from South by West. Overcast with rain at intervals.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fef (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0073__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000ff0 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0073__1.jpg)

 

6 August 1881

Position: At anchor St Michaels Bay

Lat 63.50, Long -162.10

Commencing and until 4am: Stiff breeze from South by West to South-West. Overcast and threatening.

4 to 8am: Stiff breeze from South-South-West. Overcast and drizzling rain. Sent party ashore to buy coal, too much sea to tow off lighter.

8am to Meridian: Stiff to fresh breeze from South-South-West. Drizzling rain first hour of watch. Working party ashore bagging coal. Working party returned at noon.

Meridian to 4pm: Fresh South-West wind. Sent party ashore to buy coal. Swell from North-West. Overcast with drizzling rain.

4 to 8pm: Fresh wind from South-West first part and South-South-West afterwards. Working party ashore bagging coal. Overcast with drizzling rain.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate to light breeze from South-South-West to South by West first hour. Overcast and drizzling rain.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000ff1 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0074__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000ff2 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0074__1.jpg)

 

7 August 1881

 

Position: At anchor St Michaels

Lat 63.50, Long -162.10

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast and misty. Light breeze from South-South-West first three hours and South-West last hour.

4 to 8am: Light South wind. Coaling ship. Overcast.

8am to Meridian: Light air to light breeze from South to South-South-East. Overcast and misty. Coaling ship. Barometer steady.

Meridian to 4pm: Light airs from South-West. Overcast. Engaged in coaling ship.

4 to 8pm: Light airs to light breeze from South-West to West by North. Overcast. Engaged in coaling ship.

8pm to Midnight: Light airs from West by North. Overcast. Engaged in coaling ship.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000ff3 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0075__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000ff4 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0075__1.jpg)

 

8 August 1881

 

Position: At anchor St Michaels

Lat 63.50, Long -162.10

Commencing and until 4am: Light breeze from West by North to West. Overcast. Barometer rising. Nimbus clouds.

4 to 8am: Light airs from South by West and South-West by South. Overcast. Engaged in coaling ship.

8am to Meridian: Light airs to light breeze from South-West to West. Partially overcast and pleasant. Engaged in coaling ship.

Meridian to 4pm: Light airs from North-North-West to North-West. Overcast. Engaged in coaling ship.

4 to 8pm: Light airs from North-West. Partially overcast and pleasant. Engaged in coaling ship.

8pm to Midnight: Light airs to light breeze from North-West. Partially overcast and pleasant.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000ff5 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0076__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000ff6 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0076__1.jpg)

 

9 August 1881

Position: At anchor St Michaels

Lat 63.50, Long -162.10

Commencing and until 4am: Light airs to gentle breeze from North by East. Partially overcast and pleasant.

4 to 8am: Gentle breeze from North by East. Clear and pleasant. Engaged in bagging coal ashore.

8am to Meridian: Gentle breeze from North by East. Clear and pleasant. Engaged in coaling ship.

Meridian to 4pm: Wind light from North by East first three hours, then North-West. Engaged in coaling ship. Clear.

4 to 8pm: Light North-West breeze. Coaling ship. Clear and pleasant.

8pm to Midnight: Clear and pleasant. Wind light North-North-West first three hours South-West last two.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000ff7 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0077__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002000ff8 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0077__1.jpg)

 

10 August 1881

Position: At anchor St Michaels

Lat 63.50, Long -162.10

Commencing and until 4am: Clear and pleasant. Light South-South-West breeze. Fog last hour.

4 to 8am: Foggy first hour. Clear and pleasant afterwards. Coaling ship.

8am to Meridian: Calm first three hours. Light airs from West-North-West last hour. Clear and pleasant. Coaling ship.

Meridian to 4pm: Light airs to gentle breeze from North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Engaged in coaling ship.

4 to 8pm: Light breeze to light airs from North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Coaling ship.

8pm to Midnight: Calm to light airs from North-North-West. Overcast and drizzling rain.

 

THE VOYAGES OF HMS RODGERS
Operations from St. Michael, Alaska

JP map Rodgers North

 

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500dc366cd0db40002000ffa (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0078__1.jpg)

 

11 August 1881

Position: Between St. Michaels and Plover Bay*

Lat 63.60, Long -161.70 at Egg Island at 8.20am

Editor's note: *to meet the Strelok

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast and cloudy. Light breeze from the South. Barometer falling. Cumulonimbus Clouds. Smooth sea.

4 to 8am: Overcast and drizzling. Light South-West breeze. Made preparations for getting under way.

7.40am: Got under way and stood out of St Michaels Bay in conn of Commanding Officer.

8am to Meridian: Overcast, light breeze from South-West. Steady Barometer. Cumulus clouds. Steaming out of St Michaels Bay.

8.20am: Ship going under steam from 3.5 to 4 knots per hour, grounded on a shell and gravel hump, on tide an hour ebb. At first touch put helm hard a port and reversed the engine without effect. Ship drawing 17 ft 6 in. aft. 15 ft 6 in forward. On course (p.c.) North-West by West 1/4 West from 1.5 to 2 miles from nearest land on port beam. Bearing (p.c.) Egg Island North 42 degrees E, South-East pt. Whale Island South 44 degrees West. Made sail braced aback and steamed astern but failed to back off. Lowered a boat and found from 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 fathoms water a ships length ahead, astern and on either bow. In sounding around the ship from the rail found on starboard quarter 18 ft, on port quarter 16 1/2 ft. On starboard beam 15 ft, on port beam 13 ft both in wake of fore royal backstays. On starboard bow 16 1/2 ft, on port bow 15 ft, ahead 18 ft. Astern 19 1/2 ft. Got out stream anchor on starboard beam, but failed to haul off. Tide running ebb. Heel of ship at close of watch about 20 degrees . Smooth water. Sounded well and found all tight.

Meridian to 4pm: Light to moderate breeze from South-South-West. Overcast and threatening. Ship aground. Ebb tide.

3.00pm: Bilge took the ground and ship ceased to heel at 29 degrees . Throw overboard deck load of wood to lighten ship. Got lighter of coal from deck and sent it ashore. Water smooth with moderate breeze from stern. Sounded well every half hour. Found to surface of water. Sent boat out to sound. Tide fell five feet. Least water under ship was abreast port fore chain 11 ft. Took very careful sounding, showed rocky and sandy bottom. Rocks 1 to 2 feet above bottom.

4 to 6pm Gentle breeze from South-South-West. Overcast and unpleasant. Ship aground. Making all preparations for getting ship off when the tide rises. Got two lighters of coal ashore. Ship still on bilge.

6 to 8pm: Light South-South-West breeze. Steady barometer. Carried out starboard bower on starboard beam in readiness to heave off when tide should rise.

8.00pm: Began righting rapidly.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle to moderate breeze from South-South-West. Overcast and threatening. Ship still aground. Laying easily. Tide rising slowly. Heel of ship at 8pm 26 degrees , at 9pm 20 degrees , at 10pm 20 degrees , at 11pm 16 degrees , at midnight 16 degrees . Lowest water under port fore chain at midnight 16 ft. Sounding well every half hour no increase in water.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002000ffc (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0079__1.jpg)

 

12 August 1881

Position: Between St. Michaels and Plover Bay

Lat 63.60, Long -161.70

at Egg Island

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast with moderate South by West breeze. Ship lying easily.

1.00am: The tide slacked and the lead astern showed 16 ft. At the same time the heel of the ship was 17 degrees 30'. Depth of water abreast of fore rigging at 1am 14 ft. At 4am depth aft 17 ft.

2.30am: Heel of ship 20 degrees .

3.25am: Tide turned flood.

4.00am: Heel of ship 16 degrees 30'.

4 to 8am: Light to moderate South-South-West breeze. Steady Barometer. Tide and ship rising.

6.00am: Heel of ship 8 degrees .

7.30am: Made sail and braced all aback. Came up the hawser from main top head. Shifted stream anchor to starboard quarter and brought a strain on it. Hove in on large hawser from bower anchor.

7.55am: Ship break away and swung to her anchor in 3 1/2 fathoms water. Sounded well and found ship tight. Hauled up kedge. Shortened sail and proceeded to heave up anchor.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to light breeze from South-South-West. Overcast and drizzling rain. Got kedge aboard. Hove up starboard anchor, unbent hawser from anchor and bent starboard chain. Got lighters along side and discharged them.

11.00am: Came to anchor with port anchor. 5 fathoms water veering to 15 fathoms on chain. Hoisted boats and made all preparations for going to sea. Sounded the well frequently, no increase in water.

Meridian to 4pm: Light to moderate breeze from South-West three hours and South-South-West last hour.

1.20pm: Got underway and steamed out on course North-West. Made fore and aft sails.

2.30pm: Egg Island bore (p.c.) East-North-East distance 5 miles

3.40pm: Changed course to West-North-West (p.c.)

4 to 6pm: Overcast and drizzling. Barometer falling slightly. Light South-South-West breeze. Smooth sea.

5.00pm: Took departure. South-West point of Stuart Island bore (p.c.) South-South-West distance 8 miles. Ship on course West-North-West under steam and fore and aft sails.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from South-South-West. Overcast and drizzling rain. Made all plain sails to royals. Got cast of lead at 10 minute intervals. Hard sandy bottom 10 fathoms water.

8pm to Midnight: Wind moderate from East-North-East first three hours; freshening and shifting to South-South-East last hour. Overcast and raining.

8.15pm: Took in main and mizzen topmast staysail and main topgallant staysail and spanker.

11.36pm: In accordance with night orders changed course to West by South having run 20 miles from 8pm. Set spanker and braced up by starboard braces. Smooth sea. Barometer falling rapidly.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002000ffe (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0080__1.jpg)

 

13 August 1881

Position: St. Michaels to Plover Bay

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast and drizzling. Moderate South by West breeze; hauling to South-South-West during the second hour. Barometer falling.

0.15am: Set main top and topgallant staysails.

1.45am: Took in and furled all square sails. Ship on course West by South as per night orders of Commanding Officer.

4 to 8am: Moderate to light breeze from South-South-West to South-West. Overcast and misty. Land in sight on starboard beam.

8am to Meridian: Moderate breeze from West. Partially clear first hour. Overcast with light drizzling rain and fog. Moderate sea. Rising barometer.

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast cloudy and foggy, with occasional patches of clear sky. Smooth sea. Light South-West breeze falling and hauling to southward.

2.30pm: Set fore and aft sails.

3.45pm: Made sail. Changed course to West 1/2 South. At 3.40 by order of Commanding Officer.

4 to 6pm: Light to gentle breeze from the South-South-East. Overcast and raining. Set all square sails.

6 to 8pm: Moderate breeze from East. Overcast with drizzling rain.

7.00pm: Hauled down main and mizzen topmast staysails and main topgallant staysail and brailed up spanker and gaff topsail. Hauled up lee clew of mainsail.

8pm to Midnight: Overcast and raining throughout watch. Moderate breeze from East. Freshening and hauling to southward. Smooth but gradually rising sea.

9.30pm: Braced up a little and set mainsail.

10.30pm: Set spanker.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002000fff (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0081__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001000 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0081__1.jpg)

 

14 August 1881

Position: St. Michaels to Plover Bay

Lat 64.40, Long -172.20 off Mys Chaplina at 6pm

Commencing and until 4am: Moderate to stiff breeze from South-South-East to South. Overcast and cold. Barometer falling. Temperature of water fell 9 degrees between 2am and 3am, rising 4 degrees from 3am to 4am.

4 to 8am: Fresh breeze from the South first hour and from South by East afterwards.

6.00am: Took in royals and flying jib. Overcast and misty. Moderate sea.

8am to Meridian: Overcast and drizzling. Fresh South-South-East breeze, hauling to eastward. Distilling. No noon observation.

8.15am: Banked fiers.

9.30am: Took in spanker and weather clew of mainsail and hauled down staysail.

10.30am: Set royals.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle breeze to light airs from East-South-East to North-East by North. Overcast, foggy and raining.

4 to 6pm: Light baffling air from North to West-South-West. Thick foggy weather first part.

5:00pm: Heard breakers on port bow. Wove ship to southward and eastward and brought by the wind on port tack heading North-East. Fog partially cleared and showed Isabel Island bearing West-South-West distance about 1/2 mile.

6.00pm: By cross bearing plotted position off Tchaplin Point. Got cast of lead in 25 fathoms. Blue mud bottom. Set course South-South-East.

6 to 8pm: Light West-South-West breeze hauling to southward. Barometer rising. Changed course to southward.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle to stiff breeze from South-West to West-South-West. Partially overcast and pleasant.

9.00pm: Set course South by West, Point Tchaplin bore (p.c.) West distance about 2 1/2 miles. Got cast of lead at short intervals getting bottom from 11 to 17 fathoms. No bottom at 12m in 20 fathoms. Long swell.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002001002 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0082__1.jpg)

 

15 August 1881

Position: St. Michaels to Plover Bay

Lat 63.90, Long -172.30 approximate position between St. Lawrence Island and the Siberian coast at 5am

Commencing and until 4am: Fresh South-West by West wind. Long swell from South-West. Overcast with light drizzling rain at intervals.

2.00am: Hauled down main topgallant staysail.

4 to 8am: Clear and pleasant. Moderate breeze from West-South-West, hauling to westward. Barometer rising. Course full and by on starboard tack, standing off the land.

5.00am: Sighted St. Lawrence Island on port bow.

7.00am: Tacked ship to westward.

8am to Meridian: Moderate to gentle breeze from the South-West by South. Clear and pleasant. Standing into the land.

Meridian to 4pm: Fresh breeze and long swell from South-West by South. Clear and pleasant.

4 to 6pm: Clear and pleasant first hour. Fog rising during second hour. Barometer steady. South-West breeze.

4.15pm: Hauled down and furled fore and aft sails.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from South-West by South. Clear overhead and foggy around horizon. Working along the land under steam.

8pm Midnight: Light breeze from South-West to South-West by West. Partially clear first half hour.

8.10pm: Set course West by North.

8.40pm: Thick fog shut in, brought ship to course South-South-West. Standing from the land, keeping just steerage way.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002001004 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0083__1.jpg)

 

16 August 1881

Position: St. Michaels to Plover Bay

Lat 64.37, Long -173.35

at Reyd Plover

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast and cloudy. South-West by West breeze. Steady Barometer. Ship under steerage way, waiting off entrance to Plover Bay for daylight.

1.00am: Headed North by East 3/4 East.

2.00am: Headed South-South-West.

2.15am: Headed into the land by order of Commanding Officer.

4 to 8am: Light breeze from South-South-West to South-West by South. Foggy dirty weather. Standing along coast, waiting for fog to lift to run in. Long swell from South-West.

8am to Meridian: Wind light from South-West to South. Overcast, foggy and raining. Shore occasionally visible. Standing off shore. Long heavy swell from South-West.

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast and drizzling. Barometer steady. Moderate breeze from South. Long swell. Ship in conn of Commanding Officer. Standing along the coast for Plover Bay under steam.

4 to 6pm: Gentle breeze from the South. Foggy and disagreeable weather. Working into Plover Bay. Kept the lead going: found very different soundings from those on the chart. Much less water.

6 to 8pm: Light South-South-East breeze. Long swell from southward. Overcast with drizzling rain and fog. Standing in to Plover Bay.

6.50pm: Came to anchor in 16 fathoms water. Veering to 45 fathoms on port chain. Communicated with shore and found the H.I.R.M. Ship 'Strelock'* had been here and sailed August 13, for St. Lawrence Bay. No dog food obtainable.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate South-South-East breeze, fresh in squalls. Foggy and raining.

Editor' note: *'His Imperial Russian Majesty's Ship' was the designation of a Ship-of-the-Line (usually 2-3 gun decks). The correct designation of a corvette like the 'Strelok' was H.I.R.M.C.

 

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500dc366cd0db40002001006 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0084__1.jpg)

 

17 August 1881

Position: Plover Bay to St Lawrence Bay

Lat 64.40, Long -172.20 off Mys Chaplina at 2pm

Commencing and until 4am: Foggy and raining. Fresh wind from South-South-East. Squally.

4 to 8am: Moderate breeze from South-South-East first two hours and South afterwards, overcast and misty. Drizzling rain first hour.

5.40am: Called 'all hands up anchor'. Got under way and steamed out of Plover Bay. Long heavy swell outside.

8am to Meridian: Overcast and foggy first hour. Cloudy during second and third hours, cleared away during last hour. Moderate breeze from West. Barometer steady.

9.00am: Set fore and aft sails.

10.00am: Made all sails.

11.00am: Headed course North-East by East. Hauled down main top and topgallant staysails, mizzen topmast staysail and brailed up spanker.

11.40am: Changed course to North-East by North.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from West-South-West. Clear and pleasant.

2.00pm: Took departure. Point Tchaplin bore (p.c.) West-North-West distance 3 miles. Set course North 1/4 East.

3.20pm: Changed course North by East. At end of watch Ittygram Island [Ostrov Itygran] bore (p.c.) South-West by West 1/4 West. Got cast of lead no bottom at 10 fathoms.

4 to 6pm: Moderate South-West breeze. Clear and pleasant.

4.50pm: Changed course to North 1/4 East.

6.00pm: Banked fiers and stopped steaming.

6 to 8pm: Clear and cool. Moderate West-South-West breeze. Steady barometer. Long swell from the southward.

7.45pm: Changed course to North by order of Commanding Officer.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle to moderate breeze from West-South-West. Clear and pleasant.

11.00pm: Reduced sail to topsails, fore topmast staysail and set spanker. Hove to on starboard tack, with main topsail to the mast to await daylight. Got cast of lead in 21 fathoms water.

Cape Krelengran [Mys Kryguygun] bore (p.c.) North-West by West distance about 6 miles.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002001008 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0085__1.jpg)

 

18 August 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commencing and until 4am: Moderate breeze from South-West clear and pleasant. Hove to first part of watch.

2.30am: Sighted schooner on starboard beam standing to eastward.

2.45am: Spread fiers and headed in for Cape Krelengoner [Mys Kryguygun].

4 to 8am: Clear and pleasant. East-South-East breeze. Rising barometer. Long swell from South-East. Ship on course North-West by West. Standing in for St. Lawrence Bay.

6.35am: Came to in 15 fathoms water veering to 31 fathoms on port chain. Russian corvet 'Strelock' at anchor close by. She sent an officer to tender service.

8am to Meridian: Light breeze from the South-East to East-South-East clear and pleasant. Captain Livron Comanding Officer of "Strelock" came aboard.* Great many natives came aboard, traded with them getting seal skin boots.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle to light breeze from East to South-East. Overcast and pleasant. Russian ship sent over and received on board one cow and hay for same. Presented by Commanding Officer of "Strelock".

4 to 6pm: Light breeze from East-South-East to East. Overcast but pleasant.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from the eastward. Overcast and pleasant. Commanding Officer visited Russian vessel.

8pm to Midnight: Light to moderate breeze from South-East to East-South-East. Overcast and raining.

Editor's note: *They were informed by Captain de Livron that the crew of the Revenue Cutter Corwin investigated numerous artefacts taken by natives from a stranded shipwreck. They believed that these artefacts belonged to the lost whaler Vigilant.

http://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/61/mode/1up/

 

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19 August 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay to Herald Island

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

Commencing and until 4am: Wind fresh to moderate from South-East. Overcast and raining.

4 to 8am: Light South-East breeze. Foggy and raining.

8am to Meridian: Light breeze from South by West first two hours and South-South-East afterward. Falling barometer.

Meridian to 4pm: Light southerly breeze. Overcast, foggy and raining.

2.00pm: Fog lifted. Spread fiers.

2.30pm: Fog shut in again; banked fiers.

4 to 8pm: Light breeze from South-South-East. Fog and drizzling rain.

8pm to Midnight: Light South by East airs. Calm second hour.

9.50pm: Spread fiers.

10.20pm: Got underway and steamed out of St Lawrence Bay.

10:30pm: The "Strelock" followed passing us at 11.40. Made fore and aft sails.

Midnight: Took departure.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db4000200100c (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0087__1.jpg)

 

20 August 1881

 

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 66.08, Long -169.65 near Mys Dezhneva at 7.20am

Commencing and until 4am: Clear and cool. Rising barometer. Light breeze from the South; freshening and hauling to West and West-North-West. Ship on course East by North.

1.00am: Banked fiers.

1.45am: Started ahead again under steam and sail. Russian corvet "Strelock" keeping in company.

2.00am: Changed course to North-North-East.

4 to 8am: Moderate to stiff breeze from West. Clear and pleasant.

7.20am: East Cape bore (p.c.) West. Russian corvet "Strelock" on port beam about six miles distance.

8am to Meridian: Clear and pleasant. Fresh breeze from West.

8.20am: Stopped engines. Banked fiers. Commenced distilling.

11.00am: Lost sight of "Strelock". *

Meridian to 4pm: Clear and pleasant. Fresh breeze from West and West by North. Ship full and by on port tack.

3.00pm: Took in flying jib, main top staysail and spanker.

4.00pm: Wove ship to southward and northward. At close of watch ship on starboard tack close hauled under all plain sail to topgallant sail except spanker, also main and mizzen top staysail.

4 to 6pm: Moderate breeze from the West. Clear and pleasant. Stopped distilling. Moderate sea from North-West.

6 to 8pm: Fresh breeze from West first hour, West by North second hour. Overcast and foggy.

8pm to Midnight: Overcast and foggy. Light breeze from West by North, hauled to North. Wind died away. Smooth sea. Rising barometer.

10.00pm: Got cast of lead in 20 fathoms. At 11pm 24 fathoms, at 12pm 22 fathoms.

11.30pm: Spread fiers.

Midnight: Shortened sail and started ahead under steam course North-West by West by order of Commanding Officer.

Editor's note: *The Strelok landed two German scientists at the East Cape. This was the last time when they saw the Strelok. She didn't show up at their meeting point at Cape Serdze Kamen.

 http://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/68/mode/1up/

 

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21 August 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 66.91, Long -171.64 near Mys Serdtse-Kamen at 7.45am

From Mys Serdtse-Kamen to Ostrov Vrangelya

Commencing and until 4am: Calm until 3.40am then light airs came out from South-East. Very foggy until 3.30 then fog lifted. Got cast of lead each hour of watch. Depth of water as follows; 1am 24 fathoms, 2am 24 fathoms, 3am 25 fathoms, 4am 22 fathoms. Hauled down all fore and aft sails. Long sea from the North-West.

4 to 8am: Light to gentle breeze from South-South-East. Foggy first hour, clear and pleasant afterwards.

4.00am: Made all sails to topgallant sails except weather clew of mainsails and spanker.

5.20am: Sighted high land on port bow. Got cast of lead as follows: At 5am in 20 fathoms, 6am in 20 fathoms, at 7am in 19 fathoms, at 7.55am in 18 fathoms.

7.45am: Cape Serze Karmen on port bow bearing west (mag).

8am to Meridian: Clear and pleasant. South-South-East breeze. Rising barometer. Smooth sea. Swung ship for compass correction.

11.00am: Received a visit from natives who described a wreck in accordance with information received. Stood along the coast towards their village on course West 1/2 North.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle breeze from South-West to South-South-West. Clear and pleasant. Took soundings as follows: 1pm 15 fathoms, at 2pm in 14 fathoms, at 2.50pm 13 1/2 fathoms.

12.30pm. Shifted course West-North-West 1/2 West.

1.00pm: Shifted course West 1/2 South. Spoke and took aboard native and canoe. Native directed way to suppose wreck.

2.50pm: Hove to and sent whale boat ahead to sound out the harbor. Ship following in. Whale boat went ashore.

3.10pm: Took in all sails.

5.35pm: Whale boat returned.

6.00pm: Took departure. Kelunchin Island* [Ostrov Kolyuchin] bore South-South-West (mag) distance one mile. Set course West-North-West and made sail. Clear and pleasant. Light South-South-West breeze.

6 to 8pm: Clear and pleasant. South-South-West breeze. Steady barometer. Smooth sea.

7.45pm: Stopped engine and banked fiers and changed course to West. Got cast of lead as follows: at 7pm in 16 fathoms, at 8pm in 17 fathoms.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle breeze from South-South-West. Partially overcast and pleasant. Got cast of lead every hour. Depth of water as follows, viz: 9pm in 15 fathoms, 10pm in 13 fathoms, 11pm 14 fathoms, midnight 13 fathoms. Smooth sea.

8.40pm: Changed course to North-West by West. Cape Onman** bore (p.c.) West-North-West resembling an island.

10.00pm: Hauled fiers.

Editor's notes: *The name of the island has the words Eel Eelthtan written above it, which is probably Eeteetlan Island mentioned in WM Gilder's book: 'Icepack and Tundra'. However, Eeteetlan is not Ostrov Kolyuchin, but Ostrov Idlidlya 25 miles to the west of Cape Serdze Kamen, according to their own measurements: 'The position of the island was established by numerous observations of the stars before the weather became too cold to use the necessary instruments, and ascertained to be 67 degrees 03' north latitude and 172 degrees 45' west longitude.'

http://archive.org/stream/icepackandtundr01gildgoog#page/n158/mode/1up

 

Gilder noted that their maps weren't reliable: 'To one accustomed to the accurate surveys of southern coasts, the irreconcilability of Arctic shores to the chart lines is somewhat bewildering, and a discrepancy of from forty to sixty miles in the location of Koliutchin Island by the various charts made it rather doubtful that we had reached that point. Knowing the name to be the native one for the position, I appealed to our guide and asked him if it was Koliutchin Island. At first he seemed to be in doubt, but, after consultation with his friends ashore, he came to me and pointing at the island pronounced the name. I was then satisfied that he was correct, but his mere assent to my question, I felt, amounted to nothing; he would undoubtedly have said '' yes" had I asked him if it were Staten Island. His volunteered information was much more satisfactory; but, like all these good-natured savages, he seemed willing to agree to anything suggested to him.'

archive.org/stream/icepackandtundr01gildgoog#page/n94/mode/1up/

 

**It's unlikely that they could see Cape Onman from their position

 

 

 

500dc366cd0db4000200100f (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0089__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001010 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0089__1.jpg)

 

22 August 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

From Mys Serdtse-Kamen to Ostrov Vrangelya

Editor's note: Hourly soundings noted in margin by all other hourly recordings

Commencing and until 4am: Moderate South-South-West breeze. Weather pleasant. Partially clear. Got cast of lead as follows: 1am 17 fathoms, at 2am in 17 fathoms, at 3am in 19 fathoms, at 4am in 20 fathoms. Bottom fine dark gray sand. At end of watch high lump in sight on port quarter bearing South (mag). Light scud passing to southward.

4 to 8am: Overcast. Raining first two hours. Barometer falling slightly. Moderate breeze from South-South-East hauling to eastward. Got cast of lead as follows: viz: At 5am 20 fathoms, at 6am in 20 fathoms, At 7am in 21 fathoms, at 8am in 23 fathoms.

8am to Meridian: Moderate breeze from South-East. Partially overcast and pleasant. Long swell from the southward. Passed drift wood during the watch. Got cast of lead as follows, viz: at 9am 22 fathoms, at 10am in 24 fathoms, at 11am in 25 fathoms, at meridian in 25 fathoms. Bottom blue mud and sand.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate South-South-East breeze. Cloudy and raining. Got cast of lead as follows, viz: 1pm in 26 fathoms, 2pm in 26 fathoms, at 3pm in 26 fathoms, and at 4pm 26 fathoms. Soft blue mud bottom.

4 to 6pm: Fresh breeze from South-South-East. Falling barometer. Brilliant rainbow visible last hour. Moderate sea. Hauled up lee clew of main sail. Cast of lead as follows, viz:, 5pm in 26 fathoms, 6pm in 26 fathoms. Fine dark gray sand.

6 to 8pm: Moderate to light breeze from South-South-East. Clear and pleasant. Long sea from the southward. Got cast of lead as follows, viz: 7pm in 26 fathoms, 8pm in 26 fathoms. Blue mud and sand.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate to light breeze from South-South-East. Got cast of lead as follows, viz: at 9pm in 27 fathoms, at 10pm in 27 fathoms, at 11pm in 27 fathoms, at midnight in 27 fathoms.

10.25pm: Started fiers.

Midnight: Commenced steaming ahead.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002001011 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0090__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001012 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0090__1.jpg)

 

23 August 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

9pm: Working in towards Wrangel Land through ice. Hove to [Editor's note: Entry in knots/sea direction columns]

Lat 70.88, Long -177.46 about 12nm South-East of Cape Hawaii, Ostrov Vrangelya at 7pm

http://archive.org/stream/ourlostexplorers00blisrich#page/60/mode/1up

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast but pleasant. Light South-South-East breeze. Calm during last hour. Barometer steady.

4 to 8am: Light air to light breeze from North-West to North-North-West. Overcast and foggy. Passed drift wood. Saw some strange birds around ship. Long sea from the southward. Depth of water as follows, viz:, 5am in 28 fathoms, 6am in 28 fathoms, 7am in 29 fathoms, at 8am in 29 fathoms. Blue mud. At last cast very soft mud.

8am to Meridian: Wind fresh from North-North-East. Long swell from North-North-East. Overcast and raining. Depth of water as follows, viz:, at 9am in 26 fathoms, at 10am in 26 fathoms, at 11 am in 26 fathoms, at meridian in 26 fathoms.

Meridian to 4pm: Fresh breeze from North hauling to North-West and falling light.

3.20pm: Tacked ship to northward. Set topgallant sails, mainsail, main and mizzen top staysails. Depth as follows: viz:; at 1pm in 25 fathoms, at 2pm in 24 fathoms, at 3pm in 23 fathoms, at 4pm in 23 fathoms.

4 to 6pm: Light breeze from the West. Overcast and raining. Passed some drift wood and a blade of an oar. Passed through water resembling tide rip. Saw many birds around ship. Ducks and other water fowls. Depth of water as follows, viz:, 5pm in 22 fathoms, at 6pm 22 fathoms. Bottom hard.

6 to 8pm: Wind light from West to West by North. Cloudy. Smooth sea.

8pm to Midnight: Light air to gentle breeze from North-West by West to North-West by North. Overcast and cold. Depth of water as follows, viz: 9pm in 21 fathoms, at 10pm in 21 fathoms, at 11pm in 17 fathoms.

6.45pm: Sighted Wrangel Land bearing from right ahead to 4 points forward of port beam, the South end making down to a low cape and the greater part high mountains sloping gradually to the North-end. Ice in sight between the ship and the shore. Land distant about 15 miles. The edge of ice about 6 miles.

8.30pm: Made out a black mass in ice near shore and commenced working towards it in loose ice. It prove to be a piece of dirty ice. Continued on to within 8 miles or nine miles of the land, then headed course North-North-East. Working through the loose ice.

11.00pm: Hove to to leeward of pack to wait for day light.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002001014 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0091__1.jpg

 

24 August 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 71.39, Long -175.65 Ostrov Geral'd at 1.30pm

Commencing and until 4am: Gentle to moderate breeze from the West. Partially overcast and pleasant.

Midnight to 2.20am: Ship in pack ice partially. Hove to under spanker and jib.

2.20am: Started ahead slowly under steam to work ship out of ice. Ship struck several times against heavy cakes.

3.00am: Stood on course North-North-East

3.30am: Shifted course to avoid ice, making good North-East. Set fore sail. Wrangel Island in sight on port beam. At end of watch South end of land bore (p.c.) West-South-West 1/2 West. North end of land bore (p.c.) North-West 1/4 West. Depth of water as follows, viz: 1am in 21 fathoms, 2am in 21 fathoms, at 3am in 21 fathoms, 4am in 21 fathoms.

4 to 8am: Moderate to stiff breeze from West to West-North-West.

5.00am: Sighted Herald Island. Passed through some loose ice. Pack ice along port beam.

6.00am: Set foresail and lower topsails.

8am to Meridian: Clear and pleasant. Fresh breeze from West by South hauling to southward. Rising Barometer. Wrangel Island visible on port beam and quarter. Herald Island on starboard bow. Ship on course North.

10.00am: Made all sails to topgallant sails except mainsail. Depth of water: 10am 21 fathoms, noon 18 fathoms.

1.30pm: The whale boat with party in charge of Master H.S. Waring, USN, left the ship to examine Herald Island for cairns or other indications of the 'Jeannette' party having been there. Standing off and on with the ship, weather pleasant and wind moderate from the South-South-West. Heavy breakers on the reef extending out from the North-West point of the island.

6 to 8pm: Moderate breeze from the South-South-West. Clear and pleasant.

6.00pm: Whale boat returned having landed and found nothing to indicate that the 'Jeannette' party had ever visited the island.

6.15pm: Stood along the island to the East end to see if any cairn were left. But saw no sight of any.

7.00pm: Set course South-East 1/2 East. Made sails to topsails. East end of Herald Island bore (p.c.) North 3/4 East, West end North-West by West distance from center of Island about 6 miles. Banked fiers and commenced distilling.

8pm to Midnight: Light to moderate breeze from South-West by South to South by West. Clear and pleasant.

9.00pm: Set topgallant sails. Got sounding as follows, viz: 10pm 31 fathoms, midnight 36 fathoms. Hard bottom. At end of watch Herald Island bore (p.c.) North-West by West. No ice in sight. Long sea from southward and westward.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002001016 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0092__1.jpg)

 

25 August 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 71.27, Long -178.92

at Ostrov Vrangelya

Commencing and until 4am: Wind light and variable from South to West.

2.40am: Spread fiers and shortened sail. Commenced steaming on course South by West. Herald Island in sight bearing (p.c.) North-North-West. Standard compass very erratic.

4 to 8am: South-East breeze. Steady barometer. Full and by. Working towards Wrangel Land. Pack in sight ahead and on starboard beam.

11.00am: Sighted Wrangel Land bearing (p.c.) North-West by North 1/2 West. At noon the Southern point of Wrangel Land bore (p.c.) West-North-West. Ice pack in sight on starboard bow.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to light breeze from South-South-East. Standing in towards Wrangel Land on course West-North-West 1/2 West. Large ice pack to northward. Smooth sea.

4.30pm: Shortened sail and stood into pack. Working towards Wrangel Land. Set spanker and jib to aid steering. Edge of pack about 12 miles from beach. Ship at close of watch about 6 miles from nearest point on shore.

6 to 8pm: Calm clear and pleasant. Working in toward Wrangel Land through the pack under steam. Ice in some places quite heavy. Passed great many walrus. At end of watch in 4 miles of beach.

8pm to Midnight: Weather pleasant and calm. Working in through ice.

10.00pm: Came to anchor off Wrangel Land in 7 fathoms water. Veered to 15 fathoms port chain. Landing party went ashore. Banked fiers.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002001018 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0093__1.jpg)

 

26 August 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 71.27, Long -178.92

at Ostrov Vrangelya

Commencing and until 4am: Calm. Steady Barometer. Ship at anchor off Wrangel Land 1/2 m from shore. Strong tide. Large masses of ice drifted by ~ it necessary to use the helm.

4 to 8am: Calm, clear and pleasant

6.00am: Master H.S. Waring left the ship with whale boat to hunt a harbor or safe anchorage. Ebbtide running 1 knot per hour. Very little ice along shore. Heavy pack one mile from shore.

8am to Meridian: Light airs to gentle breeze from West-South-West to South. Clear and pleasant. Master H.S. Waring returned and reported a good harbor inside sand spit ~ of ship anchorage. Current running along beach to the westward 1,2 knots per hour. Flood tide. Ship swung to the flood at 10am. Ice pack tending to the eastward showing a different current from the one the ship anchored in.

Meridian to 4pm: Light to moderate breeze from South to South-West. Clear and pleasant. Ice flow settling to the eastward.

2.15pm: Spread fiers.

2.30pm: Got under way and stood into harbor under steam.

3.45pm: Came to anchor in harbor in 4 fathoms water veering to 30 fathoms on port chain. Soft mud and gravel.

4.00pm: Hauled fiers. Ice working to eastward. Commenced fitting out boats for expedition.

4 to 8pm: Gentle breeze from South-West by South to South-West. Partially overcast and pleasant. Ice pack working to the eastward. Engaged in fitting out boats.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle breeze from South-West. Overcast and cold.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db4000200101a (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0094__1.jpg)

 

27 August 1881

Position: At Wrangel land, Arctic Ocean (Rodgers Bay)

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Commencing and until 4am: Gentle to moderate breeze from West. Partially overcast and pleasant.

4 to 8am: Gentle to moderate breeze from West to West-South-West, clear and pleasant. Engaged in fitting out boats. Pack setting to eastward. No ice along the shore.

8am to Meridian: Weather clear and pleasant. Moderate breeze from West-South-West first two hours and from South-West last hours. Engaged in fitting out and provisioning exploring parties.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate South-West breeze. Partially clear. Exploring parties were organized as follows: Viz: Land party. Lieut Robt M. Berry, P. A. Surgeon M.D. Jones, Thom Loudon (c.F.c), Frank Melms (c.F.), O. Peterson (cF) & D. Booker (cS) with provisions for 10 days.

The 2nd whale boat; Master H.S. Waring in charge, Asst. Surgeon J.W. Castillo, F. Bruch (BM), F. Berk (QM), J. Huvner (cF) [Huebner], Owen McCarthy (I.c.F), W. Grace (sc) with 20 days provisions. 4th whale boat Ensign H.J. Hunt in charge Asst. Eng. A.V. Zane, A. Lloyd (cT), J. Johansen (sea), J. P. Quirk (CM), Ed. O'Leary (IcF), Frank McShear (Sea) [McShane] with 20 days provisions. The whale boats left the ship at 3.30pm. 2nd whale boat going to the northward and eastward. 4[th] whale boat to the southward and westward. Both boats ordered to be back by the 10th of Sept. The party in charge of Commanding Officer left the ship at 4pm struck across the land and were to attempt to reach the opposite coast. Those remaining aboard Master Chas. F. Putnam, Ensign Chr. M. Stoney and pay clerk Wm Gilder were ordered to make magnetic observations and survey the adjacent coast and harbor.

4pm to Midnight: Moderate to light South-West breeze. Clear and pleasant. Ice outside setting to the northward & eastward.

 

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500dc366cd0db4000200101c (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0095__1.jpg)

 

28 August 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Commencing and until 4am: Calm until 9pm. Then light North-East airs through remainder of day. Clear and pleasant weather. Fog from 7 to 9pm.

9.00am: Set up tent and established magnetic observations on shore. Got observation for Latitude by meridian altitude of sun and for Longitude by p.m. time sight. Set up tide gage which was knocked down by floating ice in inside harbor.

Ebb tide from 3am until 9am, then flood until 6pm. No apparent tidal current from 6 to 9pm when ship again swung to the ebb.

Ice inside mooring with tide.

In the afternoon made observations for magnetic inclination and set up declinometer.

Ensign Stoney engaged in setting up signals on the shore and cutting in ~ peaks.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db4000200101e (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0096__1.jpg)

 

29 August 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Commenced clear and pleasant. Calm and light westerly airs as per columns.

Tide apparently very irregular today. The ice outside setting to southward and northward.

The ice inside the harbor breaking up somewhat and going out with the tide.

Ensign Stoney and party engaged all day in measuring base line and cutting in signals. Got observations for magnetic inclination.*

Set up self registering tide gauge, but was knocked down by drifting ice.

Weather cloudy towards noon and remaining cloudy till 6pm when thick fog set in lasting during remainder of day. Light drizzle last three hours.

Sent party after walrus and shot two large ones. Party reported having killed ten, but were unable to tow them home.

*dip 79 degrees 15', variation 19 degrees 49'

http://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/82/mode/1up/

 

500dc366cd0db4000200101f (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0097__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001020 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0097__1.jpg)

 

30 August 1881

 

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Commenced cloudy with light drizzling rain and light North-East airs. Calm from 2am until 7.30 when light North-East breeze sprung up.

Ice in harbor breaking up and going out with tide and no ice coming in. Ice outside setting to the northward.

Ensign Stoney and party at work in surveying.

Sent party after walrus. Succeeded in killing two small ones.

Determined constant of magnets.

In the afternoon wind from East-North-East to North-East and freshening to a stiff breeze at Midnight.

Cloudy, with drizzling rain and fog last part.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002001021 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0098__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001022 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0098__1.jpg)

 

31 August 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Blowing fresh from North all day, rendering magnetic work in the tent ashore impracticable.

Cloudy, snowing from 4pm to midnight. Heavy pack ice setting along shore to the southward and westward.

Ship riding to the wind all day. No moving ice inside the harbor.

At 4 started fiers under donkey boiler for purpose of heating ship. At 8pm hauled fiers.

 

 

LOGS FOR SEPTEMBER 1881

 

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500dc366cd0db40002001024 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0099__1.jpg)

 

1 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast and cold. Strong wind from the North; Squally with occasional passing snow fall.

No observations on account of high winds.

Started fiers under donkey boiler at 6am for heating purpose. Hauled them at 8pm.*

Heavy ice flow passing to southward and northward. Ice nearly all out of harbor. Very high water at 5am and again at 6pm.

Editor's note: *Temperature by barometer at 6 am is 56 degrees Fahrenheit, it drops to 52F at 8 am, but by midday it is 70F, spends most of the afternoon at 75/76F, and finally falls away to 65F by midnight. Meantime the dry air temperature has hovered around 32F all day.

 

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500dc366cd0db40002001026 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0100__1.jpg)

 

2 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Commenced with fresh breeze from the North. Occasional snow squalls. Generally cloudy with clear space at intervals. Ship riding to the wind.

Ice outside all morning to the southward and westward. Surf breaking heavily at times on outside of sand spit.

No observation owing to high winds.

Started fiers under donkey boiler at 9am for heating ship. Hauled fiers at 8pm.

10.00pm: The Commanding Officer and Thos Loudon (cF) returned on board, having left the remainder of party and came on to get a boat for them. Sent a boat up the harbor for them.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002001028 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0101__1.jpg)

 

3 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

3.00am: The boat returned with O. Peterson (cF) and W. Booker (c Cook) [Editor's note: Booker was steward (cS)]

4.00am: Sent another boat with Ensign Stoney in charge. Started fiers under donkey boiler.

10.00am: Dr Jones and Frank Melms (cF) were made out on beach opposite the ship on main land. Sent a boat for them.

1.00pm: Ensign Stoney with boat and crew returned.

8.00pm: Hauled fiers.

Overcast during the day, with snow during the greater part.

Wind fresh from North first part, moderating towards noon and dying away to light airs from North-North-East at 11pm. High water at 9am and 10pm. Low water at 3am and 3pm. Rise and fall of tide 5 feet.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db4000200102a (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0102__1.jpg)

 

4 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Wind unsteady in direction during the day. Varying from North to South going round by the eastward. Survey party went out for work. Master Putnam ashore for magnetic purpose.

6.00pm: Master HS Waring, Dr JW Castillo and men returned to ship on foot having to leave their boat. The latter having been shut in by the ice. The following articles were left with the boat: viz:, 1 whale boat complete, including spars, rigging, sails, oars and paddles. 3 water breakers, 1 boat anchor, 1 boat box, containing: 1 axe, 1 hatchet, 1 lantern, nails &c, 1 harpoon, 1 shovel, 1 alcohol stove, 1 A tent and gear, 5 sheep skin sleeping bags, 3 buffalo robes and 3 day provisions for seven men.

Master Waring reported that he had found a "cairn" left by the U.S. Revenue Cutter "Corwin", the records showed that she had landed on Herald Island August 9, 1881 and Wrangel Land 12 August 1881, "Corwin" landed about 17 miles to the northward and eastward of our anchorage. Dense fog at intervals during the day. Great deal of ice outside of sand spit, working to southward and westward.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db4000200102c (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0103__1.jpg)

 

5 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Day commenced with light breeze from South-West. Calm remainder of day. Very gloomy weather. Surveying party out at work. Master Putnam ashore taking magnetic observations. Commanding Officer and Dr Jones out most of the day, examining the country. Ice scattering outside of spit. Heavy ice some distance from shore. Used donkey boilers for heating ship during the day. Hauling fiers at night. Overcast all day.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db4000200102e (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0104__1.jpg)

 

6 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Weather very unsettled, light airs from East-South-East to East from 10 to 12m and from South-East from 7 to 8pm. Calm remainder of day. Very dense fog most of day, snowing at intervals. Fog would lift for short intervals. Ice outside in considerable concentration. Breaking at times and making loud noise. Sounding out harbor. Master Putnam ashore for magnetic observations. Mountains covered with snow. Used donkey boiler for heating purpose. Hauling fiers at night.

Editor's note: After a cool day by the barometer yesterday (about 52F all day), the temperature leapt from 53F to 71F today between 11am and midday. Top temperature for the day was 82F at 8pm. Snug!

 

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500dc366cd0db40002001030 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0105__1.jpg)

 

7 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

The day opened with some snow but cleared up during the latter part of the morning. Great moderate in the weather. Snow nearly all melted by night. Ice very heavy on sip ['ship'?] and extending out to sea as far as the eye could reach. Master Putnam ashore. Engaged in determining magnetic deviation. Finished sounding out harbor.

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002001032 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0106__1.jpg)

 

8 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Day opened with gentle breeze from the North and freshened until 6pm when it shifted to North by West and lessened. All ice was blown from the spit, but heavy ice could be seen out at sea to the southward and westward. Surveying party out. Master Putnam ashore determining magnetic deviation.

11.00pm: Very brilliant display of Northern light covering the Eastern heavens. The effect of it could be noticed on the declinometer. Brightest of Northern light was in the southward and westward. High water at midnight.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002001033 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0107__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001034 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0107__1.jpg)

 

9 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Light wind from the northward and eastward most of the day. During the later part of day southerly winds. Swung ship for deviation of compass. Ice well out to sea in small quantities. Finished surveying. Master Putnam ashore taking magnetic observations.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002001035 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0108__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001036 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0108__1.jpg)

 

10 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Commenced calm, then light breeze from North and North-North-West. Calm at 8am. Light airs from South-South-East and South till 3 when it shifted to North-North-West and continued light from North-West and North throughout the day.

Weather overcast and calm clearing partially from 5 to 7pm snowing during afternoon. Made observations for magnetic declination. Started fiers at 7am under donkey boiler and hauled them at 8pm.

High water at 12.30 and at 1pm. Low water at 6am and 7pm.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002001037 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0109__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001038 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0109__1.jpg)

 

11 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Commenced calm. During first part light airs from North-West to North then moderate breeze from North-North-West till 3pm, afterwards moderated from North.

Weather cold and partially clear greater part of day.

Made observations for magnetic declination.

High water at 1am and 1pm. Low water at 7am and 8pm. Rise and fall of tide 4 feet. Ice outside ~ outside.

Made observations for set of tide inside of harbor. The flood tide set to northward and ebb tide to eastward.

7.00pm: Ensign Hunt and party returned on board, having passed the Northern point of the island, when they were blockaded by ice and compelled to return.

During the day heated ship with donkey boiler.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002001039 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0110__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db4000200103a (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0110__1.jpg)

 

12 September 1881

Position: At Wrangel Land Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.97, Long -178.42

at Rodgers Bay, Ostrov Vrangelya

Light to moderate breeze from North during the day except from 5 to 6 pm when wind was North by East.

High water at 3am and 3pm. Low water at 9am and 9pm. Rise and fall of tide 4 feet.

Weather cold and partially clear.

Brought instruments aboard and made preparations for sea.

Editor's note: On this day the three boats of the Jeannette crew were separated in a storm. The boat of Lt. Chipp was never seen again.

 

500dc366cd0db4000200103b (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0111__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db4000200103c (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0111__1.jpg)

 

13 September 1881

Position: At Wrangel Land Arctic Ocean

Lat 71.27, Long -178.92

at Ostrov Vrangelya

Commencing and until 4am: Light North-North-West breeze. Weather pleasant, partially clear.

4 to 8am: Light airs from North-North-West to North. Partially overcast but pleasant. Engaged in preparing for sea. Got all dogs aboard. Started fiers.

8am to Meridian: Light airs from North to North-North-East. Partially overcast but pleasant. Preparing for sea.

9.30am: Got under way and stood out of harbor.

Meridian to 4pm: Light airs from North-East. Overcast and pleasant. Preparing for sea. Standing along Wrangel Island to the northward and eastward. Shifting course so as to keep about 3 miles of shore.

4 to 6pm: Calm. Overcast except overhead, but pleasant. Secured every thing for sea. Standing along Wrangel Island about 3 miles of shore. Passing through loose ice.

6 to 8pm: Calm. Overcast but pleasant. First part of watch standing along Wrangel Island about 3 miles of shore.

6.50pm: Stood off setting course North-East by North. Got cast every half hour. 10 fathoms at 7, 10 fathoms 7.30, 10 fathoms 8pm. At end of watch land in sight bore (p.c.) as follows, viz:, northward end of Herald Island North-East, South end of Herald Island North-East by East. Point Waring in Wrangel Island South by East. Cape Hawaii on Wrangel Island South-West by West 1/2 West.

8pm to Midnight: Clear and pleasant. Bright moonlight last half of watch. Light air from North-East by East to East-North-East. Long swell from North-East.

10.00pm: Lost sight of Wrangel Island bearing (p.c.) South-South-West. Herald Island in sight on starboard bow. Aurora last part of watch. Got cast of lead as follows: viz:, 9pm in 12 fathoms, 10pm no bottom at 12 fathoms, 11 and 12m in 14 fathoms. Bottom soft mud.

 

 

500dc366cd0db4000200103d (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0112__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db4000200103e (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0112__1.jpg)

 

14 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 71.27, Long -178.92

at Ostrov Vrangelya

Commencing and until 4am: Clear and pleasant. Light North-East breeze. Barometer steady. Cirrocumulus clouds.

3.00am: Sighted a bright light on port bow. Stood for it, and made it out be a whaler trying out*.

4 to 8am: Calm. Partially overcast and pleasant.

5.00am: Stopped engine and set a boat with carpenter in charge to communicate with the whaler 'Coral' of New Bedford. Rest of watch stood by whaler, while making out official report to the Hon. Sect. of of the Navy. Could hear nothing of the 'Jeannette' or crew. Heard some reports of the missing whalers.

8am to Meridian: Cloudy and pleasant. Calm. Steaming just fast enough to keep up with the 'Coral'. Stopping at intervals. Three whalers in sight during watch. Got cast of lead at 10 and 12m in 22 fathoms. Soft mud.

Meridian to 4pm: Clear and pleasant. Light East-North-East airs and calm. Barometer steady. Smooth sea. Lying to near whaler and preparing mail to go on board.

4 to 6pm: Calm. Partially overcast and pleasant. Laying to off whaler 'Coral'. Waiting to finish official reports to the Hon. Sect. Of the Navy.

5.20pm: Boat with Commanding Officer and mail left ship for whaler 'Coral'.

6 to 8pm: Calm. Lying to.

8.00pm: Started ahead on course South-East by South for Herald Island.

8pm to Midnight: Clear and pleasant. Calm. Steady barometer. Cumulus clouds. Standing on course South-East by East under steam for Herald Island.

11.00pm: Stopped engine and lay by to wait for daylight.

Editor's note: *'trying-out' means boiling oil from blubber. For a detailed description follow this link: http://www.neh.gov/humanities/2010/marchapril/feature/whaling-the-old-way

 

500dc366cd0db4000200103f (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0113__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001040 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0113__1.jpg)

 

15 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 71.39, Long -175.65

Ostrov Geral'd

Commencing and until 4am: Calm. Partially overcast and pleasant.

1.40am: Started ahead slowly and run on course until 2.25 when stopped engine.

3.25am: Started ahead again on course. Got soundings every half hour 22 fathoms until 4am got 21 fathoms. Soft mud bottom with pebbles. Long swell from the southward. Herald Island bore (p.c.) at end of watch as follows; viz;, South-West end South-East 1/2 S, North-East end South-East 3/4 East. One whaler in sight at daylight bore North. During the watch could see the lights of two whalers bearing northward and eastward.

4 to 8am: Calm first three hours. Light East-South-East airs last hour. Standing in to Herald Island.

6.50am: Sent whale boat to shore to search for the 'Corwin' cairn at North-East summit. Two whalers in sight to eastward. Smooth sea. Got cast at 5 in 21 fathoms and at 7 in 18 fathoms.

8am to Meridian: Overcast and cloudy. Rising barometer. Light East by South breeze. Master Waring returned on board with whale boat without having made the landing. Made sail and filled away at 10am on course North-North-West. Then stood for whalers to the northward and eastward. Hove to alongside of a whales carcass and procured dog food from it.

9.00am: Got cast 18 fathoms. At 11 in 28 fathoms, at noon no bottom at 33 fathoms.

Meridian to 4pm: Light air to light breeze from East-South-East. Overcast and pleasant. Along side whale carcass.

2.30pm: Started ahead under steam and sail, all plain sail to topgallant sail.

4.00pm: Got cast of lead. No bottom in 28 fathoms. Seven whalers in sight on starboard beam and ahead.

4 to 6pm: Light East-South-East breeze. Smooth sea. Cloudy but pleasant.

5.45pm: Stopped engine to communicate with whaler 'Coral'*, which had just struck a whale.

5.50pm: Ahead again. 

6.00pm: Changed course to North by West 1/2 West. Got cast in 36 fathoms, soft mud bottom.

6 to 8pm: Cloudy. Steady barometer. Smooth sea.

8.00pm: Sounded in 31 fathoms water. Mud bottom.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle breeze from East-South-East. Overcast with light drizzling rain. At intervals quite clear. Got cast at 10pm in 28 fathoms. Soft sandy bottom. At 12m in 29 fathoms black hard sand. No ice in sight.     

Editor's note: *They asked Captain Coon of the Coral if he could spare them a boat to replace the one that they abandoned at Wrangel Island, but he declined the request. The Rodgers then returned to Wrangel Island on 22 September and retrieved their boat. http://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/95/mode/1up/

 

500dc366cd0db40002001041 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0114__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001042 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0114__1.jpg)

 

16 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 72.90, Long -174.50 *

Editor's note: *After an unsuccessful search so far the Rodgers commenced searching along the pack ice to the north of Wrangel Island. Positions between 16. and 27. September marked with a '*' are derived from the following chart by William Gilder:

http://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/n19/mode/1up

Commencing and until 4am: Light East-South-East breeze first two hours hauling to East third hour and East-North-East last hour of watch.

2.00am: The temperature of water at surface was 34 degrees , a fall of 4 degrees during the hour. Overcast with drizzling rain first three hours. Snow last hour. Got cast in 32 fathoms.

3.50am: Ran into small broken ice and at 4 sighted the pack ahead and on starboard bow and beam distance 1/4 mile. Slowed down and headed away from the pack.

4.00am: Got cast in 40 fathoms, soft brown bottom.

4 to 8am: Overcast and snowing. Light North-East breeze. Barometer falling slowly. Ship lying to to leeward of ice pack distance 1/4 mile. Furled sail and kept distance from pack under steam alone, waiting for clear weather.

6.00am: Got cast in 52 fathoms.

8.00am: Got cast in 54 fathoms, soft blue mud.

8am to Meridian: Light airs from North-East. Overcast and snowing at intervals. Standing along large field of ice (very heavy) 4 feet out of water.

10.00am: Got cast in 66 fathoms, soft blue mud. Saw along the ice small ducks and a few gulls.

11.30am: Started up into a pocket heading North-West.

Meridian to 4pm: Light airs from North-East first hour, light breeze from North second, third calm. Moderate North-North-West breeze last hour. Changing course first two hours to clear ice field.

2.00pm: Passed the end of heavy ice field showing about 5 feet above the water. Headed course East and ahead fast. Got cast at 2pm in 60 fathoms, 4pm in 52 fathoms, soft mud bottom. Temperature of water rose 6 degrees last hour. Weather overcast and foggy greater part of watch. Clear last half hour.

4 to 6pm: Overcast and foggy. Freshening breeze from North-North-West. Barometer steady. Stood East by North first hour then lay to to wait for clear weather.

6.00pm: Got cast in 42 fathoms, soft blue mud.

6 to 8pm: Moderate breeze from North-North-West. Overcast and moderately clear. Wind very cold, ship lying to under spanker and main trysail, heading from North by East to North-East by East.

8.00pm: Got cast in 42 fathoms. Soft bottom.

8pm to Midnight: Fresh North-West breeze. Smooth sea. Overcast. Lying to under main trysail and spanker.

10.00pm: Got cast in 42 fathoms. At 12m in 40 fathoms. Soft blue mud. Ship drifting slowly to southward and eastward.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002001043 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0115__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001044 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0115__1.jpg)

 

17 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast. Fresh North-West breeze. Barometer steady. Smooth sea. Lying to to leeward of ice pack under spanker and main trysail. Got cast at 2am in 37 fathoms, at 4am in 32 fathoms. Soft blue mud.

4 to 8am: Fresh to moderate breeze from North-West. Overcast and cold, but clear until 7am when it set in thick.

5.30am: Spread fiers.

6.00am: Started ahead North-North-West. Whaler trying out bore South by East about 8 miles.

6.30am: Changed course to North. No ice in sight. Few birds in sight; gulls and ducks. Passed two walrus in ice second hour of watch.

8am to Meridian: Moderate North-West breeze. Foggy first hour, pleasant and partially clear afterwards.

10.00am: Made the ice ahead. Got cast in 31 fathoms.

Noon: Got cast in 35 fathoms. Soft blue mud.

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast and cloudy. Light breeze from the North. Ship under steam standing through loose ice to the northward. Ice heavier and closer after 2pm forcing her to the northward. Ship in conn of Commanding Officer.

4 to 6pm: Calm. Overcast and quite thick. In heavy ice working to the northward through leads. New ice forming on the water. Ship experienced several heavy strikes.

5.15pm: Ship came to heavy ice headway stopped. Tried to force her through full speed, but could make no headway. Started back working to southward through lead.

6 to 8pm: Calm. Weather overcast. Working to southward through heavy ice. New ice forming.

8 to Midnight: Light airs and calm. Barometer steady.

8.00pm: Pack became solid. Ran alongside of a large field and planted ice anchor. Got out another with ~ from port quarter and sprung ship around to protect rudder from large cake coming up astern. Ice closing in fast. No clear water in sight, but indications of it showing in clouds to South-West. Banked fiers.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002001045 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0116__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001046 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0116__1.jpg)

 

18 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 73.20 at noon

Commencing and until 4am: Light airs to light breeze from East, from 12.30 to 3am. Calm from 3 to 4am. Temperature moderating. Misty not able to see far ahead about 1/4 mile.

2.30am: Spread fiers.

3.45am: Got in ice anchors and started ahead working through ice. Ice very compact, but not very heavy. Made three ship length 1st hour going most of the time full speed. Saw polar bears on the ice. Indications of open water ahead to the southward and eastward.

4 to 8am: Light South-East by East breeze first hour, then moderate from East. Fresh squalls between 5 and 7am. Working through the ice first part.

4.40am: Extended a lead which continued as far as the open water. Passing between the East and West pack, the former tending to eastward and the latter to southward and westward as far as the eye could reach.

5.20am: Propeller struck block of ice propelling under the water and stopped engine. During first part in working through thick ice held ship head to ice and steamed ahead full speed.

7.00am: After reaching clear water changed course to North-East 1/4 East to skirt along the Eastern pack.

8.00am: Finding the ice tending to northward changed course to North 3/4 East. Weather cloudy and cold. Passed two walrus in ice second hour of watch.

8am to Meridian: Overcast and cloudy, but clearing away. Plenty of loose ice. Ship making Northing and Eastings. Heavy ice pack to northward and westward. At noon meridian altitude showed latitude 73 degrees 12' North. Ship on (true) course North by East steering through loose ice on edge of pack. Got cast at 10am in 51 fathoms, at noon in 54 fathoms. Soft blue mud.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from East-South-East. Cold and setting in thick at intervals and snow squalls. Lighting up occasionally showing a little blue sky. Clear intervals around the horizon. No land in sight. No ice in sight to the North-North-West from the deck, but ice reported from mast head heavy ice on both beams. Passed through several smooth places with light skin of ice on it. Got cast at 2pm 49 fathoms, at 4pm in 78 fathoms blue mud. Shifted course as per column.

4 to 6pm: Moderate East-South-East breeze, weather cloudy and cold. Snow falling at intervals. Changed course to skirt ice pack. Heavy ice to northward and eastward. Got cast at 6 in 64 fathoms, soft blue mud.

6 to 8pm: Overcast and thick. East-South-East breeze. Barometer steady.

8.00pm: Hove to, to await daylight. Got cast at 8pm in 59 fathoms, mud bottom.

8 to Midnight: Gentle breeze to light airs from East-South-East to South-East by South from 8 to 11pm. Calm from 11 to 12pm. Very changeable, at intervals light rain snowing and misty. Occasionally lighting up, stars coming out very bright overhead, but misty around horizon. Very brilliant display of Northern light, brightest in the South-West. It would extend across the entire heavens, in a bow shape, changing its form very rapidly. Then suddenly shoot off in every direction, so bright as to have the appearance of day breaking. Passing fine ice cakes. No heavy ice in sight, young ice forming. Ice blink to northward and westward. Got cast at 10pm and 12m in 47 fathoms. Soft blue mud.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002001047 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0117__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001048 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0117__1.jpg)

 

19 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 73.73, Long -171.80

http://archive.org/stream/ourlostexplorers00blisrich#page/69/mode/1up

Commenced and until 4am: Weather overcast and foggy. Light South-East airs first hour. Calm afterwards. Passed several large pieces of ice between 1 and 2am. Got cast at 2am in 54 fathoms, at 4am in 56 fathoms.

4 to 8am: Commenced overcast and foggy. Fog clearing away after 6am.

5.00am: Started ahead on course North-North-West.

6.00am: Made the pack on port bow and beam.

8.00am: Made heavy pack on starboard beam. Ship steaming through lead several miles wide passing occasionally large detached masses of loose ice.

8am to Meridian: Light air to light breeze from North-East. Weather overcast and foggy. Snowing at intervals, lighting up occasionally, with blue sky overhead. Ice on both beams and ahead. Ice very compact, large cakes piled on each other.

9.40am: Got to sound of lead, stopped engine, got cast of lead 82 fathoms, hard bottom. Turned around and set course South-East. Detached cakes of ice to South-East in lead.

11.15am: Saw a polar bear in water just ahead of ship. Shot bear and got it aboard for dog feed. Passed great many birds: ducks, gulls and sand snipes. Also great many seals.

Meridian to 4pm: Light to moderate breeze from North-East to East-North-East. Snowing first two hours. Fog last two. Got cast at 2pm in 62 fathoms, at 4pm in 65 fathoms. Soft bottom.

4 to 6pm: Clear and pleasant. Steady barometer. East-South-East breeze. Open sea. Made all sails and set course South by West.

6 to 8pm: Overcast and pleasant. Steady barometer. Gentle to stiff breeze from East. No ice in sight.

8pm to Midnight: Cloudy first part. Clear afterwards. Fresh East-South-East breeze. Under steam and sail. Took in mizzen topmast staysail to ease helm.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002001049 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0118__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db4000200104a (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0118__1.jpg)

 

20 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Returning to Herald Island

'After cruising along the pack so far without discovering any traces of sledge parties from the Jeannette, and our further progress being cut off, we steamed toward Herald Island to anchor there for the purpose of making observations upon the current reported to flow in a north-westerly direction.'

http://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/99/mode/1up/

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast and cloudy. Fresh breeze from East. Steady Barometer.

1.00am: Made a whalers light on port bow. Took in and furled topgallant sails. Passed through the whaling fleet during the watch. No ice close at hand.

4 to 8am: Gentle breeze from the East. Overcast and foggy. Very thick, with light rain at intervals.

5.00am: Lost sight of whalers.

5.40am: Set in very thick, could not see a ship length ahead. Reduced sails and lower topsails and jibs, ran engine as slow as possible. Sounded whistle at intervals.

6.20am: Think we passed a sail close aboard on starboard beam. Did not see it myself, although took every precaution to do so, but was reported twice by reliable lookout. Moderate sea. Got cast at 6am in 28 fathoms, at 8am in 23 fathoms. Sandy bottom. Barometer falling.

8am to Meridian: Overcast and foggy, with drizzling rain.

10.00am: Changed course to South by West 3/4 West. Got cast as follows; viz:, At 9 in 20 fathoms, at 10 in 18 fathoms, at 11 in 17 fathoms, at 11.30 in 16 fathoms and at noon in 15 1/2 fathoms. Hard bottom gravel.

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast. Thick fog. 16 fathoms water. Ship under lower topsails and jib with steam up. Got starboard anchor of bow and ready for letting go.

2.40pm: Shortened sails and came to in 16 fathoms water. Veering to 45 fathoms on starboard chain at water edge. Indicator showed surface current of .5 knots per hour setting (p.c.) North-West by North. Banked fiers.

4 to 6pm: Light breeze from East-South-East. Very thick fog. Long swell from East-North-East.

4.00pm: At anchor 16 3/4 fathoms water. Put over current log could get no decided rate of current. Ship tended to East-South-East. Tried current log at 5pm and 6pm with same result. Neither was there any change in the depth of the water. Barometer steady.

6 to 8pm: Foggy, with light breeze from East-South-East. Long swell from East-North-East. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Thick fog. Light breeze from East-South-East to East.

9.00pm: Veered to 60 fathoms on starboard chain. Current indicator showed .2 knot per hour East-South-East at 9pm, at 10pm, at 11pm and midnight. The surface current seam due entirely to tide. For while the depth as shown by the lead remained constant, there was no appreciable current, which as the depth increased the current increased and tended to the northward and westward by compass and as the depth decreased the current increased but tended to southward and eastward.

Editor's note: 'The weather grew thicker as night approached, and a strong wind prevailed while we held our course toward Herald Island. During the night we passed in view of the lights of some of the whalers, who were still holding their position near where we had left them when going toward the north. As the fog continued we dropped anchor in fifteen fathoms of water at half -past two o'clock on the afternoon of the 20th. During the following twenty-four hours the observations of the current were continued, which indicate a tidal current setting toward the northwest as the water is deepening, and toward the southeast when shoaling, while at high and low water there was no current perceptible. The measurements were made at the surface, and at a depth of ten fathoms.'

http://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/99/mode/1up/

 

500dc366cd0db4000200104b (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0119__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db4000200104c (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0119__1.jpg)

 

21 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 71.39, Long -175.65

Ostrov Geral'd

Commencing and until 4am: Light breeze to light airs from midnight to 2.45am from East by South to East. Calm at 3am, last hour light airs from North-East by East. Very thick fog lifting at intervals. But at no time could see over three ship length ahead.

2.00am: .5 knot current setting West-North-West. Depth of water 15 fathoms 1 foot, at 3am .6 knot current setting West-North-West. Depth of water 15 fathoms 3 feet, at 4am .5 knot current, setting West-North-West. 15 fathoms 4 feet depth of water. Swell moderating during the watch. Barometer steadily falling. Swell from eastward.

4 to 8am: Light East-North-East breeze. Dense fog. Surface current setting East by North force .3 knots per hour. Easy swell from eastward.

8am to Meridian: Thick fog. Falling barometer. East-South-East breeze. Current (10 feet below surface) setting East-North-East at 9am .4 knot, at 10am .5knot, at 11am .3 knot, at noon .2 knot West-North-West (p.c.).

Meridian to 4pm: Light airs from South-East from 12m to 2pm. Calm from 2 to 3pm. Light airs from West last hour. Very dense fog with drizzling rain. Fog lifting a little at intervals, but most of watch not able to see two (2) ship length ahead. Hove current log every hour showing as follows; viz:, 1pm .5knot, 2pm .85 knot, 3pm .75 knot, 4pm 1. knot per hour setting West-North-West. Tried the current log at a depth of 10 feet at each time noted for surface current and got same rate. Got depth of water each hours as follows; viz:, 1pm 16 fathoms 4 feet, at 2pm 17 fathoms 1 foot, at 3pm 17 fathoms, at 4pm 17 fathoms several pieces of drift wood floated by ship in direction of current, also some whale feed. Barometer steady last three hours. Swell moderating to little swell from the northward.

4 to 6pm: Light breeze from West. Foggy with drizzling rain. Lighted up to latter part of watch. Current at 5pm setting North 1.1 force 1.1 knots 10 fathoms depth.

6 to 8pm: Overcast and cloudy. Moderate breeze from West. Barometer steady.

6.00pm: Spread fiers.

6.15pm: Got under way and started ahead under steam course South by West 3/4 West.

7.00pm: Set topsails and jib, got cast of lead in 16 1/2 fathoms water. Sand and gravel bottom.

8.00pm: Sounded depth and bottom.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate breeze from West-North-West. Overcast and misty. Snowing, sleeting and raining at intervals. Barometer steady. Got cast as follows; viz:, 9pm 17 fathoms, 10pm 17 fathoms, 11pm 18 fathoms, 12m 20 fathoms.

9.45pm: Set in very thick, slowed down, engine very slowly turning over.

11.25pm: Stopped engine and banked fiers and hove to on port tack, with main topsail to the mast. Settled away upon fore topsail and set spanker. Passed during the watch considerable whale feed.

 

 

500dc366cd0db4000200104d (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0120__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db4000200104e (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0120__1.jpg)

 

22 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean off Wangel Land

Lat 71.27, Long -178.92

at Ostrov Vrangelya

Editor's note: Knots column notes 'Drifted about 2 miles to eastward' for the hours midnight to 4am.

Commencing and until 4am: Moderate breeze from West-North-West. Weather overcast. Light snowfall first two hours and foggy around horizon. Hove to during the watch under jib, lower fore topsail, spanker and main topsail to the mast. Moderate sea.

4 to 8am: Overcast and cloudy. Moderate North-North-West breeze, hauling to westward. Ship hove to on port tack.

4.45am: Wove ship to southward and eastward, bringing her full and by on starboard tack heading West by North. Made sail to topsails and started ahead under steam and sail.

7.45am: Made South-East shore of Wrangel Island on starboard bow and beam. Shortened sail and headed up for Pillar Point bearing (p.c.) North. Made fore and aft sail on port tack. Got cast of lead as follows: viz:, 5am in 20 fathoms, at 6am in 19 fathoms, at 7am in 18 fathoms and at 8am in 17 1/2 fathoms. Hard gravel bottom.

8am to Meridian: Gentle wind from North-West by North. Overcast and cold. Snowing at intervals.

11.50am: Ran into loose rotten ice. Standing along Wrangel Island. Working up to where whale boat was left.

Noon: Pillow Pt. [Pillar Point] bore (p.c.) North-North-West distance half mile. Got cast as follows: viz:, 9am in 17 fathoms, at 10am in 14 fathoms, 11am in 14 fathoms, at noon in 15 fathoms. Barometer steady.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate breeze from West-North-West. Overcast. Working through loose ice along North-East side of Wrangel Island.

4 to 6pm: Standing in through loose ice towards Wrangel Island to pick up whale boat and outfit abandoned Sept. 3.

5.30pm: Came to in 5 fathoms water veering to 15 fathoms on starboard chain. Dragged. Hove up anchor and steamed ahead coming to again a few hundred yards to windward. Master Waring left ship with boat and crew with three extra men to recover boat.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from North-West to West by North. A little blue sky in the northward. Ice drifting around clear water in sight some distance from land.

6.45pm: Master Waring returned aboard and brought off boat and jib left by him Sept 3. 1881.

7.00pm: Hove up anchor and stood off from Wrangel Island through the ice.

7.45pm: Reached clear water.

8pm to Midnight: Light breeze from West by North. Weather pleasant. Partially clear. Brilliant aurora last hour.

10.30pm: Lost sight of North-East cape of Wrangel Island bearing (p.c.) South-South-East. Smooth sea.

 

 

500dc366cd0db4000200104f (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0121__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001050 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0121__1.jpg)

 

23 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 72.80, Long -177.50 *

Commencing and until 4am: Clear and pleasant. Open sea. Ship under steam heading North-North-West. Barometer steady. Got soundings as follows; viz:, at 1am in 10 fathoms, 2am in 11 fathoms, at 3am in 9 fathoms, at 4am in 9 1/2 fathoms. Gravel bottom.

4 to 8am: Light breeze from West by North. Occasional clear sky. Cold. Foggy to the North-West.

5.00am: Came up to the ice pack. Ice not very heavy. Stood along the pack to the eastward then turned around and stood to the westward and ran on that course until came up to solid ice pack.

8.00am: Started ahead on course North-East by East 1/2 East. Wrangel Island bore (p.c.) as follows; viz:, greatest Eastern end South-East by East. Western end South-West by South. Ships head North-East by East 1/2 East. Could see Wrangel Island very plainly. The mountains to the westward were all covered with snow. Got cast as follows; viz:, at 5am in 12 fathoms water, 6am, 7am and 8am same depth. Gravel bottom. Saw ducks coming South. Passed some large pieces of drift wood.

8am to Meridian: Light westerly breeze. Partially clear. Standing along loose ice. Changed course as per column. Got cast as follows; viz:, at 11am in 15 fathoms, at 12m in 16 fathoms.

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast and cloudy. Snowing during second and third hours. Light breeze from West. Shifting suddenly to North-North-East and freshening at 1pm. Made fore and aft sails. Hauled down and reset it on starboard tack when wind shifted.

3.30pm: Set fore sail.

4 to 6pm: Moderate to fresh breeze from North-North-East. Overcast and snowing. Moderate sea from the northward and eastward. Passed drift wood. No ice in sight. Barometer unsteady. Got cast at 6pm 25 fathoms.

6 to 8pm: Fresh breeze from North-East by North. Cloudy. Snowing during greater part of watch.

8.00pm: Got cast of lead in 27 fathoms. Rough sea.

8pm to Midnight: Stiff to moderate breeze from North-East by North. Overcast and snowing. No ice in sight. Rough sea. Barometer steady.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002001051 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0122__0.jpg)

500dc366cd0db40002001052 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0122__1.jpg)

 

24 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Latitude 73 degrees 28' N, 179 degrees 52' W [at meridian]

Lat 73.47, Long -179.87

http://archive.org/stream/ourlostexplorers00blisrich#page/69/mode/1up

Commencing and until 4am: Gentle to moderate breeze from North-North-East. Overcast and cold. Got cast as follows; viz:, at 2am in 34 fathoms, at 4am in 32 fathoms. Gray mud. Barometer steady.

12.35am: Hove to on port tack, under jib and spanker, slowed down, turning over just fast enough to keep ship from drifting. Ice blink very plain from South-South-East to North-West by West.

3.00am: Very brilliant aurora. Light enough on deck to read large print.

4 to 8am: Moderate North-North-East breeze. Overcast.

4.45am: Brought ship to course North-West and ahead full speed. Moderate sea.

7.00am: Ice reported from mast head on port beam.

8.00am: Made the pack ahead and on both bows. New ice rapidly forming on surface of water.*

8am to Meridian: Overcast and cloudy. Clear to northward after 10am. Latitude 73 degrees 28' North at an altitude of 120 feet above the sea. About the 180 meridian; no land was visible in any direction. The sky to the northward was clear and high land might have been seen had there been any to the southward of 74 degrees North latitude. Heavy pack ice ahead and on both bows and beams. Got cast as follows; viz:, at 10am 29 fathoms, 12m in 31 fathoms.

10.00am: Shifted course to East and headed out of pack, steaming through several inches of thick slush until 11.40am.

Meridian to 4pm: Light to gentle breeze from North-East to East-North-East. Weather cold with blue sky. Snowing a little from 3 to 4pm. Long sea from the North-East. Got cast as follows; viz:, at 2pm in 30 fathoms, at 4pm in 27 fathoms. Gravel bottom. Barometer steady.

4 to 6pm: Moderate East-North-East breeze. Long swell from East. Weather cloudy and cold. Got cast of lead at 6pm in 24 fathoms. Soft blue mud bottom.

6 to 8pm: Clear and pleasant. Temperature of air and water both moderating. Barometer rising. North-East breeze. Ship under steam and fore and aft sail. Got cast at 8pm 30 fathoms. Gravel bottom.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle breeze from North-East by North. Pleasant weather. Clear over head at intervals. Brilliant display of aurora. Got cast as follows: viz:, at 10pm in 30 fathoms, at 12m in 28 fathoms. Blue mud. Long sea from northward and eastward. No ice in sight.

 

Editor's note: *This is the first day where the sea temperature logged is below 32 degrees Fahrenheit (0 degrees Centigrade) all day

 

 

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500dc366cd0db40002001054 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0123__1.jpg)

 

25 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 72.10, Long -177.10 *

Commencing and until 4am: Wind light and variable. East first hour. East-South-East second and third hour and East by North last hour of watch. Overcast. Snowing first hour foggy afterwards. Long swell from North-East by East. Got cast at 2am in 25 fathoms, at 4am in 25 fathoms. Soft mud bottom.

12.00am: Took in fore and aft sails and hauled up to East-North-East.

1.00am: Made fore and aft sails and took them in at 3am.

4 to 8am: Overcast, foggy and snowing throughout watch. Set and took in fore and aft sails as they would draw. Breeze shifted suddenly from East by North to southward. Got cast as follows; viz:, at 6am in 24 fathoms, at 8am in 26 fathoms. Gravel bottom.

8am to Meridian: Gentle breeze to light airs from South-East by East. Weather changeable. Blue sky at intervals and thick fog occasionally. Snowing first hour of watch.

10.20am: Took in all sails and headed South-East. Long sea from East. No ice in sight. Got cast as follows, viz:, at 10am in 26 fathoms, at 12m in 25 fathoms. Stiff blue mud. Barometer falling.

Meridian to 4pm: Light breeze from South-East by East first hour and South-East afterwards. Weather mild and pleasant. Partially clear. Got cast as follows; viz:, at 2pm in 20 1/4 fathoms, at 4pm in 18 fathoms. Soft blue mud.

3.30pm: Sighted Wrangel Island on starboard bow and beam and ice on starboard beam. Long swell from eastward.

4 to 6pm: Clear and pleasant. Barometer steady. North-East breeze.

5.40pm: Headed to and ran over to ice pack to examine a black mass resembling a ship. Prove to be dirty ice. Heeded course again.

6.00pm: Got cast in 15 fathoms water. Gravel bottom.

6 to 8pm: Light breeze from East. Clear and pleasant. Land in sight on starboard bow at dark. Got cast at 7pm in 10 1/2 fathoms, at 8pm in 10 1/2 fathoms. Hard bottom.

8pm to Midnight: Light East-South-East breeze. Long swell from eastward. Clear and pleasant. Brilliant aurora.

Got cast of lead as follows; viz:, at 9pm in 12 fathoms, at 10pm in 14 fathoms, at 11pm in 12 fathoms, at 12m in 13 1/2 fathoms.

 

 

500dc366cd0db40002001055 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0124__0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001056 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0124__1.jpg)

 

26 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 71.39, Long -175.65

off Ostrov Geral'd

Commencing and until 4am: Clear and pleasant. Light breeze from East. Remarkably bright star light and intensely brilliant and active aurora. The aurora was the most brilliant and altogether the most remarkable I have yet seen. Arranged in three concentric arcs extending from East to West across the entire heavens. It would occasionally burst into still brighter luminosity and the thin arcs uniting, would form one broad belt of light heaving and tossing like the sea in a gale. The morning star seem to be affected by it in appearance, showing a bright perpendicular line drawn through its center and extending through upwards of a degree above and below.

4 to 8am: Gentle to moderate breeze from East to West. Cold weather, snowing at intervals.

5.25am: Sighted Herald Island on port bow, headed for it. Wrangel Island in sight on starboard beam and quarter. Long sea.

7.00am: Took in fore and aft sails. No ice in sight. Wrangel and Herald Islands well covered with snow.

8am to Meridian: Moderate breeze from the East first two hours, and East by North afterwards. Course by the wind. Swell from eastward.

10.00am: Made sails to topgallant sails. Hauled fiers for purpose of cleaning tubes. Herald Island in sight on starboard bow during watch.

Meridian to 4pm: Clear and pleasant first two hours. Cloudy last two. Barometer falling. Cumulus clouds. Long swell from northward and eastward.

2.00pm: Tacked ship to southward and eastward and at 4pm to northward.

4 to 6pm: Light to moderate breeze from East to East-North-East, weather overcast. Wind blowing in sudden squalls. At dark Herald Island in sight on starboard quarter. No ice in sight. Long sea from eastward.

6 to 8pm: Moderate breeze from East by North. Clear and occasional fresh squalls. Long swell from eastward.

8pm to Midnight: Overcast and cloudy. Steady barometer. Moderate breeze and swell from East by North.

Midnight: Tacked ship to southward and eastward.

 

 

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500dc367cd0db40002001058 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0125__1.jpg)

 

27 September 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 71.70, Long -176.20 *

Commencing and until 4am: Wind very baffling shifting very suddenly from light airs to moderate breeze from North-East to East first half of watch. Light air to gentle breeze from North-East by East to East-South-East remainder of watch. Overcast and pleasant. No ice in sight.

3.00am: Tacked ship to northward and eastward. Long sea. Barometer steady.

4 to 8am: Cloudy weather. Light easterly breeze.

5.20am: Ship was tacked to southward and eastward.

7.00am: Sighted the whale fleet. Long swell from eastward.

8am to Meridian: Clear and pleasant. Light breeze from East to North. Barometer rising.

9.00am: Sighted steam whaler 'Belvedere' to windward, tacked ship to northward and eastward in chase wishing to speak her. Setting mainsail and flying jib, fore, main and mizzen top staysails, gaff topsail and main topgallant staysail.

11.00am: 'Belvedere' hove to.

11.30am: Tacked ship to southward and eastward.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to light breeze from East. Overcast and pleasant.

1.20pm: Hove to on port tack. Main topsail to the mast to communicate with 'Belvedere'. Reduced sails to topsails and spanker and jib.

2.00pm: Commanding Officer left ship in boat to communicate with 'Belvedere'.

3.00pm: Wove around and stood towards 'Belvedere'. Hove to to await Commanding Officer. Seven whalers in sight. Long swell from eastward. Barometer rising. Commanding Officer returned.

4 to 6pm: Light breeze from East. Hove to to communicate with whaler 'Belvedere' and send mail. Cloudy and cold.

6 to 8pm: Overcast and cloudy. Steady barometer. Light breeze from East. Ship hove to under topsail, spanker and jib. Filled away occasionally to hold position near 'Belvedere'.

8pm to Midnight: Light airs from East. Calm at intervals. Overcast and snowing.

9.40pm: Sent boat with mail to 'Belvedere'.

11.30pm: Boat returned. Made sail to topgallant sails and stood off on port tack.

Midnight: Lights of three whalers in sight. Long sea from eastward. Barometer steady.

Editor's note: Both the Rodgers and the Corwin met the whaler Belvedere in 1881, at that time commanded by Leander Owen. Owen was the Captain of the Rodgers in 1880 at a time when she bore her first name 'The Mary and Helen'.

 

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500dc367cd0db4000200105a (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0126__1.jpg)

 

28 September 1881

Position: Off Herald Island Arctic Ocean

Lat 71.39, Long -175.65

Commencing and until 4am: Overcast with fine snow falling. Calm and light North-East by East airs.

12.10am: Set topgallant sails.

01.30am: Hauled up mainsail.

4 to 8am: Overcast first two hours, clear and pleasant last two. Light North-East breeze. Falling barometer.

4.30am: Set mainsail.

6.00am: Made Herald Island directly ahead.

7.00am: Hauled up to South-East by East.

8am to Meridian: Light to moderate breeze from North-East to East by North. Clear and pleasant. Snowing first part of watch. Standing towards Herald Island.

11.45am: Started ahead under steam and sail.

1.30pm: Hauled up courses, hauled down main topmast staysail and settled topgallant sails on cap. Stopped engine and hove to off Herald Island.

1.45pm: Sent Ensign Hunt to search for the "Corwins" cairn on North-East summit of Herald Island. Moderate breeze from East. Clear and pleasant. Smooth sea.

4 to 6pm: Hove to off Herald Island. Weather cloudy. Light breeze from eastward.

6 to 8pm: Weather cloudy. Wind light from East. Rising barometer.

8pm to Midnight: Pleasant first hour – cloudy afterwards. Thick over the land. Light breeze from the East. The search party not returning, steamed around the Eastern end of Herald Island after them. Burned blue lights and sent up rockets to indicate position.

10.00pm: Came to off Eastern face of Herald Island in 17 1/2 fathoms water, veered to 60 fathoms on port chain.

 

 

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500dc367cd0db4000200105c (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0127__1.jpg)

 

29 September 1881

Position: Herald Island – Arctic Ocean

Lat 71.39, Long -175.65

Commences and until 4am: Moderate breeze from the East, partially clear with small quantities of snow falling at times. Ship riding to a current setting to the westward.

4 to 8am: Moderate breeze from the East. Passing light snow squalls.

5.30am: Got under way and steamed around the Eastern end of Herald Island looking for Mr Hunt and boat party. Mr Waring was sent in a boat to the westward on the same mission.

6.00am: Sighted the missing boat coming around the North Eastern end of the island and picked her up, and then returned to the southward and picked up Mr. Waring.

8am to Meridian: Clear and pleasant. Moderate breeze from East first two hours and East-North-East afterwards.

9.00am: Picked up the search party and steamed to southward and westward after relief boat and picked it up. Sent Master C.F. Putnam and Ensign H.J. Hunt ashore to find the 'Corwin's' cairn.

Meridian to 4pm: Standing off and on awaiting party from shore. Cloudy with light breeze from East. Barometer steady.

4 to 6pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from the South-East by South. Partially overcast and pleasant.

4.30pm: Took departure from Herald Island. Set course South-West. Boat returned from Herald Island having reached cairn left on the North-East summit by the Revenue Cutter 'Corwin'. Left record on island with 'Corwins'. Smooth sea. Steady barometer.

7.15pm: Changed course to South-West by South and took in and furled topgallant sails. Blowing fresh from South-East by South. Squally. Moderate sea.

8pm to Midnight: Overcast and cloudy during first hour. Wind blowing in occasional strong puffs, and very baffling. Barometer unsteady. Hauled down main top staysail.

 

THE VOYAGES OF HMS RODGERS
Wrangel Island

Wrangel Island

500dc367cd0db4000200105d (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0128__0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db4000200105e (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0128__1.jpg)

 

30 September 1881

Position: Off Herald Island Arctic Ocean

Lat 70.80, Long -176.90 approximate position SE of Ostrov Vrangelya at noon

From Ostrov Geral'd to Mys Serdtse-Kamen

Commences and until 4am: Moderate to fresh breeze from South-East by South from 12m to 2am. Light to stiff breeze from South to South-South-East from 2 to 4am.

1.20am: Wind freshened and set in thick; slowed down engine, took in upper topsails and jib.

2.00am: Wind came out very suddenly from the South, but died away immediately to light breeze. Weather very variable and unsettled. Squally during the watch, heavy snow squalls first three hours, setting in very thick at times, lifting, showing clear horizon and bright stars overhead. Quite clear most of the last hour.

Wind came out well on weather bow: took in all sails.

3.00am: Set fore and main topmast staysails, jib and spanker. Sea increasing, moderate swell from the southward at end of watch. Barometer rising, very cold. Between 2 and 3am passed close to ice on starboard beam. Bright display of Northern Lights during the watch, brightest between 2 and 3am.

4 to 8am: Cloudy and cold. Moderate breeze from South by East first hour. South afterwards. Fresh squalls first two hours. Moderate sea. Wrangel Island in sight on starboard quarter.

8am to Meridian: Overcast and cloudy. Rising barometer. Light breeze from South by East, hauling southward and westward. Ship under steam and fore and aft sails, on courses as per columns.

Meridian to 4pm: Light air from South-South-West from 12m to 2pm. Calm from 2 to 4pm. Overcast and pleasant.

1.20pm: Took in all fore and aft sails.

2.00pm: Wrangel Island in sight on starboard quarter. By order of Commanding Officer Wm Rohdy (QM) was disrated and reduced to Seaman for gross insolence to the Officer of the Deck. Chas McShean (Sea) was rated Q.M. Got cast of the lead, no bottom at 30 fathoms.

4.00pm: Got cast in 22 fathoms. Soft blue mud. Wind dying out. Passed large pieces of drift wood. Great many birds passed the ship during the watch. Small swell from eastward at end of watch.

4 to 6pm: Light airs from East. Weather cloudy and threatening. Smooth sea.

6.00pm: Got a cast of the lead in 22 fathoms. Gravel bottom.

6 to 8pm: Cloudy first hour. Clear last. Barometer falling. Cumulus clouds. Light breeze sprang up from North-West at beginning of watch.

6.30pm: Made the Siberian coast on port bow, distant from 30 to 35 miles.

8.00pm: Got cast of lead in 24 fathoms. Gravel bottom.

8pm to Midnight: Light to moderate breeze from North-East. Weather very unsettled, overcast. Snowing from 8 to 11pm. Setting in thick while snowing.

10.00pm: Hove to head to wind. Made spanker and jib. Engine turning over very slowly. Awaiting daylight. Got cast of lead in 21 fathoms. Soft mud.

Midnight: Got cast. Soft mud. Sea increasing from the North-East. Barometer steady.

 

 

LOGS FOR OCTOBER 1881

 

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500dc367cd0db40002001060 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0129__1.jpg)

 

1 October 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

From Ostrov Geral'd to Mys Serdtse-Kamen

Commences and until 4am: Fresh breeze from North-East first two hours to North-North-East last two. Hove to on starboard tack under jib and spanker. Drifting slowly to West-North-West. Moderate sea. Barometer falling. Partially clear first two hours. Overcast and snowing last two. Got casts at 2 and 4am in 21 fathoms. Gravel bottom.

4 to 8am: Overcast, foggy and snowing. Rising Barometer. Fresh North-North-East breeze hauling to northward and westward. Ship hove to on starboard tack.

6.20am: Started ahead on course South. Set main top staysail.

9.00am: Fog lifted disclosing the land ahead and on port bow, and beam close aboard and ice bound. Rounded to to starboard, hauled down fore and aft sail and got cast of lead in 13 fathoms water.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to moderate breeze from North by East to North-East. Very unsettled weather, snowing hard at intervals, setting in thick while snowing. Standing along coast. Captain directing course; changing course and standing out as water shoals, looking for a place to land. Heavy ice along beach and heavy sea breaking heavily on ice. Impossible for boat to land. Passed great many settlements.

11.00am: Set course standing along coast to northward and eastward. Great many whales in sight during the watch. Whales around the shore ice. Saw some seal and great many ducks and gulls. Barometer steady.

Meridian to 4pm: Fresh breeze from North-North-East first hour, shifting to North second hour and to North-West by West last two hours of watch. Weather overcast. Hazy first part, snow last two hours. Standing along the coast. Land with heavy ice along the beach. Passed several large blocks of ice grounded at some distance from the beach. Long sea from North-East first part and changing with the wind to rough sea from North-West last part of watch.

3.00pm: The snow squalls shut in the land. Brought by the wind on port tack under fore topmast staysail and spanker and let steam run down. Running along in from 9 to 10 fathoms.

4 to 6pm*: Overcast and snowing. Blowing a moderate gale with occasional lulls from North-North-West. Ship by the wind on port tack under jib and spanker. Engine turning over slowly – drifting to northward and eastward along the coast.

6 to 8pm: Stiff to moderate breeze from West-North-West. Overcast and snowing. Ship pitching easily. Heavy swell from northward and westward. Luminous water.

7.00pm: Got cast of lead in 13 fathoms.

8.00pm: Got cast in 16 fathoms. Hard bottom. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Fresh gale from West-North-West with strong squalls last two hours. Moderating last half hour. Rough sea.

9.00pm: Increased speed to get into deeper water. By the wind on port tack. Under fore topmast staysail and spanker. Clear overhead, snowing at intervals. Aurora to northward and eastward. Ship pitching deeply at times, but easily. Got cast at 9 in 19 fathoms, at 10 in 20 fathoms, at 11 and 12 in 21 fathoms. Muddy bottom.

Editor's note: *The entries of 4 to 6pm and 6 to 8pm are in reversed order

 

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500dc367cd0db40002001062 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0130__1.jpg)

 

2 October 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

From Ostrov Geral'd to Mys Serdtse-Kamen

Commences and until 4am: A little blue sky with some stars shining brightly down first two hours, overcast the last two. Snowing during a part of first hour. Moderate to strong gale from West-North-West. Rough sea. Ship by the wind, under fore topmast staysail, spanker and steam. Drifting to northward and eastward. Got soundings as follows: at 1 and 2am 20 fathoms, at 3am 21 fathoms, at 4am 22 fathoms. Sandy bottom.

4 to 8am: Fresh breeze to moderate breeze from the West-North-West. Overcast and threatening, snowing the last hour of watch. Rough sea from northward and westward. Ship pitching easily. Saw good many ducks all standing to the southward. Got cast of lead at 6am in 23 fathoms, at 8am in 24 fathoms. Blue mud.

8 to Meridian: Fresh gale from West-North-West. By the wind under fore topmast staysail and spanker. Rough sea. Cloudy. Snow first two hours. Got cast at noon in 23 fathoms. Mud bottom.

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast and snowing. Rough sea, moderating after 2pm. West-North-West breeze blowing fresh first hour, but moderating and hauling to the northward later. Barometer steady at 29.60.

4 to 6pm: Moderate and fresh breeze from North-West. Overcast and snowing. Sea moderating. Got cast of lead at 6pm in 25 fathoms water. Blue mud. Barometer steady. Sea moderating from the northward and westward.

6 to 8pm: Wind fresh from North-West by West. Rough sea. Steady barometer. Got cast at 8pm in 25 fathoms. Mud bottom.

8 to Midnight: Overcast and snowing. Moderate breeze from northward and westward. Steady Barometer. Nimbus clouds. Wind and sea moderating.

 

 

500dc367cd0db40002001063 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0131__0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001064 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0131__1.jpg)

 

3 October 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

From Ostrov Geral'd to Mys Serdtse-Kamen

Commences and until 4am: Light air to fresh breeze form the North-West by West. Overcast and snowing last hour of watch little blue sky overhead. Blowing in fresh squalls at intervals followed by very heavy falls of snow. Not being able to see half ships length. Squalls less frequent last part of watch. Also less fall of snow. Between 2 and 3am bright display of Northern Light. Moderate sea from northward to westward. Moderating all the watch. Water very luminous. Got cast of lead at 2am in 25 fathoms. Got cast at 4am 25 fathoms. Soft blue mud. Barometer steady.

4 to 8am: Fresh breeze from North-West. Squally. Overcast and cold. Heavy snow greater part of watch. By the wind on port tack under fore topmast staysail and spanker. Steaming half speed first three hours.

6.00am: Got cast in 25 fathoms. Soft blue mud.

7.00am: Brought ship to course South-South-East and made sail to topsails and foresail and increased to full speed. Set jib and hauled down fore topmast staysail. Moderate sea.

8am to Meridian: Partially overcast first two hours, snowing last two. Moderate westerly breeze. Rising Barometer. Cumulus clouds.

Noon: Made the land on starboard bow and rounded to to port setting course North-East. Passed through discolored water evidently at the mouth of a river. Got cast of lead in passing through in 17 fathoms. Sandy bottom.

Meridian to 4pm: Stiff and fresh breeze from North-West to North-West by North, overcast and snowing. Heavy fall of snow at intervals. Saw during the watch several flocks of ducks standing to the southward. Barometer rising.

12.30pm: Set course North-East. Between 12 and 1pm passed discolored water. Got cast in 17 fathoms water. Water resembled a shoal, but got more water than outside of it. Grey sandy bottom in discolored water.

3.00pm: Got cast in 24 fathoms. Grey muddy bottom. Moderate sea from northward and westward.

3.35pm: Set topgallant sails.

4 to 6pm: Fresh breeze from North-West by North. Moderate sea. Weather cloudy. Snowing first hour.

6 to 8pm: Cloudy. Moderate breeze from North-North-West. Rising barometer.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle to moderate breeze from North-North-West to North by West. Overcast and light snow first hour of watch. Clear and pleasant remainder of watch. Bright star and moon light. Ice blink on starboard beam between 9 and 11pm. Barometer rising.

10pm: Changed course to East-North-East. Moderate sea. Got cast of lead in 26 fathoms. Hard bottom.

 

 

500dc367cd0db40002001065 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0132__0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001066 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0132__1.jpg)

 

4 October 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

From Ostrov Geral'd to Mys Serdtse-Kamen

Commencing and until 4am: Light North by West breeze. Clear and pleasant weather.

3.00am: Light snow squalls. Smooth sea.

4 to 8am: Clear and pleasant. Light breeze from North by West, hauling to northward and eastward. Barometer steady.

8.00am: Took in all square sail. Got cast of lead in 26 fathoms.

8am to Meridian: Light air and light breeze from North-East. Calm and pleasant. Swell from the northward and eastward.

Noon: Got cast of lead in 25 fathoms. Pebble bottom. Barometer rising. Great many gulls following ship. Saw flock of ducks standing to southward.

Meridian to 4pm: Light North-East breezes. Weather pleasant. Partially clear. Long swell from eastward.

2.00pm: Made sail to topgallant sails.

4 to 6pm: Clear and pleasant. Rising barometer. Cumulus clouds. Moderate breeze from East-North-East.

6 to 8pm: Gentle breeze from the East-North-East. Clear and pleasant. Moderate swell from northward and eastward. Barometer steady.

7.00pm: Took in mainsail. Got cast of lead. 23 fathoms water.

8.00pm: Got cast in 28 fathoms. Pebble bottom.

8pm to Midnight: Light air from North-East first hour, and North last three hours. Weather overcast.

9.30pm: Took in all sail except jib and spanker and brought by the wind on port tack. Slowed down Engine. Smooth Sea.

 

 

500dc367cd0db40002001067 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0133__0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001068 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0133__1.jpg)

 

5 October 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 67.05, Long -172.75

Ostrov Idlidlya near Mys Serdtse-Kamen

Commences and until 4am: Light North-North-West breeze. Steady Barometer. Cumulonimbus clouds. Ship lying to under jib and spanker to wait for daylight. Land in sight on starboard quarter.

4 to 8am: Light air from the North-West from 4 to 6am. Light breeze to moderate breeze from South-West from 6 to 8am. Clear and pleasant. Land in sight at daylight. Passed some walrus in the water, also whales. Barometer steady.

4.30am: Got cast of lead – 25 fathoms with hard bottom.

5.45am: Stood in to the land South-West 1/2 West.

8 to Meridian: Light breeze from South-West by South. Clear and pleasant weather. Standing along the land from Cape Serdze Kamen to Tipcan Island*. Made fore and aft sail.

Meridian to 4pm: Light breeze from South-West by West hauling to southward. Barometer steady. Cirrocumulus clouds.

1.00pm: Lowered boat and sent her ahead to sound. Ship followed and at 1.25pm came to inside Island with port anchor in 5 fathoms water veering 15 fathoms chain.

4 to 6pm: Gentle breeze from South-South-West. Overcast and rainy. Rain freezing soon after falling. Crew engaged in taking stores and lumber ashore**. Ship riding to tide. Great many natives around. Barometer rising.

6 to 8pm: Cloudy with light South-West wind. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Clear and pleasant. Light breeze varying from South by West to South-West by South. Barometer steady. Cirrus clouds. Bright moonlight and starlight. Aurora to northward.

Editor's notes: *Tiapka Island or Ostrov Idlidlya, also referred to as Eeteetlan. Gilder gave the position as follows: 'The position of the island was established by numerous observations of the stars before the weather became too cold to use the necessary instruments, and ascertained to be 67 degrees 03' north latitude and 172 degrees 45' west longitude.'

http://archive.org/stream/icepackandtundr01gildgoog#page/n158/mode/1up

 

**'On the 8th of October a small party was landed from the Rodgers on the island of Eeteetlan, about twenty-five miles west of Cape Serdze Kamen, on the Siberian coast, the purpose of which was to form a base of supplies for sledge journeys during the winter and spring following, and to serve as a haven for any survivors of the Jeannette or missing whalers who might have reached the Siberian coast during the preceding summer or fall. A severe gale, that prevailed for several days previous to the arrival of the Rodgers at this point, had caused a surf upon the sandy shore of the main-land that prevented the landing of the party and stores there, but Captain Berry decided to place them upon the island, where a good beach and lee-shore made the landing feasible. A great many advantages that the main-land presented had therefore to be abandoned, such as the constant presence and assistance of the Tchouktchis and a plentiful supply of fresh water, of which the island is almost entirely devoid.'

http://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/102/mode/1up

 

500dc367cd0db40002001069 (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0134__0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db4000200106a (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers__1881/b001of010__0134__1.jpg)

 

6 October 1881

Position: At Cape Serdze Kamen, Siberia

Lat 67.05, Long -172.75

Ostrov Idlidlya near Mys Serdtse-Kamen

Commences and until 4am: Gentle breeze from the South. Overcast and snowing lightly at intervals.

1.35am: Ship commenced to swing but did not go around. Stem towards island. Barometer falling. Ship riding to tide and wind.

4 to 8am: Weather cloudy. Moderate breeze from South-South-East first three hours and South by East last hour. Sent working party to island to build house and land stores.

8am to Meridian: Overcast first hour clearing up after. Moderate South by East breeze. Steady barometer. Engaged in landing stores. Working party on shore.

Meridian to 4pm: Wind varying from South-South-East to East.

1.20pm: Stiff breeze came out very suddenly from South-East, lasted a half hour, then moderated and came out from the East. Partially overcast, threatening weather. Crew engaged landing stores. Barometer steady.

4 to 6pm: Weather cloudy. Moderate wind from South. Working party on shore. Barometer steady.

6 to 8pm: Clear and pleasant. Moderate breeze from South to South by East. Steady barometer. Cumulonimbus clouds. Working party returned on board.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle to fresh breeze from South-South-East to South-East. Partially overcast and pleasant. Wind blowing in puffs. Clouds passing rapidly over the face of the moon from South by West. Bright moonlight. Barometer falling.

Editor's note: The first member of Captain DeLongs group of the Jeannette crew, H. H. Ericksen, died on this day in the Lena Delta from exposure and an infection. DeLong and his party had neither food nor shelter for weeks. All men of this group died one by one from exposure and starvation during October, except Nindemann and Noros who were sent ahead of the group and were rescued by natives.

 

500dc367cd0db4000200106b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0135_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db4000200106c: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0135_1.jpg)

 

7 October 1881

Position: At Cape Serdze Kamen, Siberia

Lat 67.05, Long -172.75

Ostrov Idlidlya near Mys Serdtse-Kamen

Commencing and until 4am: Fresh South-South-East wind. Squally. Clear with bright moonlight.

4 to 8am: Clear. Strong breeze from the South blowing occasionally in heavy squalls.

5.10am: Ship commenced dragging rapidly and paying off to port. Yards braced sharp up by starboard braces. East end of island close astern. No room to veer and engine refused to turn over promptly. Put helm hard astarboard; set spanker, sheet to windward. Swung the head yards and she dragged clear. When well clear started engine ahead and brought up. Hove up anchor and found part of stock gone. Brought by the wind on starboard tack under steam, fore topmast staysail, main trysail and spanker.

8.00am: Tacked ship to southward and westward.

8am to Meridian: Moderate to fresh breeze from South-East from 8 to 10am. Gentle to moderate breeze from South-South-East from 10 to 12m. Wind blowing in squalls. Pleasant weather. Barometer steady.

11.30am: Came to anchor in 7 fathoms water. Veering to 30 fathoms. Engaged in sending stores ashore.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle breeze – moderate and fresh squalls from South-South-East to South-East. Barometer steady.

4 to 6pm: Clear and pleasant. Moderate South-South-East breeze. Steady barometer. Smooth sea. Engaged in landing stores. Working party on shore.

6 to 8pm: Light to gentle breeze from South-South-East to South by East. Partially overcast and pleasant. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Weather pleasant. Light breeze from S by E. Barometer steady.

 

 

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500dc367cd0db4000200106e: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0136_1.jpg)

 

8 October 1881

Position: At Cape Serdze Kamen, Siberia

Lat 67.05, Long -172.75

Ostrov Idlidlya near Mys Serdtse-Kamen 

Commencing and until 4am: Day opened clear and pleasant, bright moon and starlight. Light South by West breeze hauling to westward. Barometer rising. Cirrocumulus clouds.

4 to 8am: Light to gentle breeze from South-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer steady. Engaged in getting stores ashore. Carpenter and gang at work on house ashore. Great many natives aboard.

8am to Meridian: Clear. Light airs from South-West. Rising barometer. Landing stores.

Meridian to 4pm: Clear and pleasant. Light breeze from the southward and westward first two hours, when it fell calm, and during last hour sprang up from northward and eastward. Barometer rising. Cirrocumulus clouds. Smooth sea. Finished landing stores.

4 to 6pm: Light air to light breeze from the North-East. Clear and pleasant. Shore party consisting of the officers and men viz: Master Chas. F. Putnam, in charge. Dr M.D. Jones, P.A. Surgeon, W.H. Gilder, Payclerk, O. Peterson (Cox'n), Frank Milens (Captop) [Frank Melms] and Dog Driver (Las) left the ship with whale boat and complete outfit, one years provisions for (6) six men, complete outfit of medical stores. Eighteen (18) dogs and two sleds. Dog feed. House ashore was completed, outfit for house was sent ashore. Instruments for observations etc.

6 to 8pm: Weather cloudy. Wind light from North-East.

6.45pm: Got underway and stood out from land, took course North by West 1/2 West. Barometer steady. Smooth sea.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate East-North-East breeze. Made sail to topsails. On course North by West 1/2 West.

10.00pm: Changed course to North-West.

Editor's note: The ship returned to St. Lawrence Bay for winter quarters.

 

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500dc367cd0db40002001070: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0137_1.jpg)

 

9 October 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

From Ostrov Idlidlya to Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Moderate breeze from North-East. Overcast and pleasant. Light fog last two hours of the watch. Dirty looking to windward. Barometer falling. Under and square sails to topsails except mainsail, also jib, fore and main topmast staysails.

4 to 8am: Overcast and dirty weather. Wind strong from North-East by East.

7.00am: Hauled down main top staysail and jib. Falling barometer. Moderate sea.

8am to Meridian: Overcast and wet. Blowing a gale from East-North-East. Barometer falling. Nimbus clouds. Rough sea.

8.30am: Took in and furled upper topsails.

11.00am: Hauled up and furled foresail. Ship by the wind on starboard tack under lower topsails, fore topmast staysail and steam.

Meridian to 4pm: Wind very variable in force and direction as per columns. Overcast and drizzling rain from 12 to 3pm. Overcast and pleasant last hour of watch. Sea moderating. Ship pitching considerably but easily. Saw some ducks standing to southward during the watch. Sea from the northward and eastward.

4 to 6pm: Overcast. Moderate wind from South-East by East. Barometer steady. Rough sea.

6 to 8pm: Overcast. Raining last hour. Barometer steady. Light south-easterly breeze. Steady barometer. Nimbus clouds.

6.30pm: Set topsails, foresail and main topmast staysail and jib. Ship close hauled on starboard tack.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle to stiff breeze from South-East to South-East by South. Overcast and threatening weather. Rain first hour. Latter part of watch lighting up occasionally to windward. Moon visible through clouds at intervals between 10 and 12. Long sea from southward and eastward.

10.00pm: Slowed down engine to keep ship from diving into the seas. Barometer falling.

 

 

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500dc367cd0db40002001072: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0138_1.jpg)

 

10 October 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

From Ostrov Idlidlya to Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Weather cloudy with drizzling rain during intervals of watch. Moderate to fresh breeze from South by East. Ship pitching deeply to a long sea from the eastward. Barometer steady.

4 to 8am: Overcast first hour – clear and pleasant after. Moderate South-South-East breeze. Steady barometer. Long swell from the eastward.

8am to Meridian: Gentle breeze from South-South-East to South. Overcast first three hours of watch. Clear and pleasant last hour. Long sea from the southward. Barometer rising.

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast and foggy. Wind light from South. Barometer steady. Moderate sea.

4 to 6pm: Overcast and foggy, drizzly last hour. Barometer steady. Long swell from southward and eastward.

6 to 8pm: Very light air from South-South-East to South-East, foggy weather.

7.00pm: Took in all square sails and mizzen topmast staysail. Long sea from the southward. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Weather thick with drizzling rain. Calms and light breeze from South-East. Barometer steady. Moderate sea.

 

 

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500dc367cd0db40002001074: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0139_1.jpg)

 

11 October 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

From Ostrov Idlidlya to Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Overcast and raining. Moderate South-South-East breeze and rough sea. Barometer falling.

2.00am: Set fore topmast staysail, main topmast staysail and spanker and kept ship away to East by South.

4 to 8am: Moderate breeze to strong gale from South-East by East to South-East by South, blowing hardest between 6 and 7am.

5.40am: Hauled down main topmast staysail and slowed down engine.

6.20am: Hauled down head of spanker. Overcast and raining. Passed some driftwood. Rough sea from the southward. Ship pitching easily. Barometer falling.

8am to Meridian: Overcast with rain. Wind strong from South-East by East to South-East by South. Falling barometer. Rough sea.

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast. Raining first hour. Fresh southerly breeze hauling to westward and freshening. Rough sea. Ship lying to under fore topmast staysail and foot of spanker. Engine turning over. Passed great quantities of driftwood.

4 to 6pm: Fresh breeze to strong gale from South-West by West. Overcast. Threatening.

5.00pm: Set lower topsails and stood on course South-East 1/2 South. Rough sea from the southward. Ship pitching easily. Passed a great deal of drift wood. Barometer rising.

6 to 8pm: Cloudy. Gale with very heavy squalls from West by South.

6.15pm: Took in fore topsail. Lying to under fore topmast staysail and lower main topsail. Flying jib was washed from boom, carried to masthead and was blown to pieces. Rising barometer. Ship lying to easily to a very heavy sea.

8pm to Midnight: Clear. Rising barometer. Heavy gale from the West, hauling to northward. Ship laboring greatly. During second hour deck load of lumber fetched away, cut lashings and attempted to launch it overboard to relieve lee rail, but it jammed and only a small portion was lost. The gale moderating somewhat and the ship righting herself made no further attempt to rid her of deck load. Set main trysail in view of losing main topsail. Shot one of the dogs which had been jammed when lumber broke adrift. Moderating greatly after 11pm.

 

 

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500dc367cd0db40002001076: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0140_1.jpg)

 

12 October 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

From Ostrov Idlidlya to Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Moderate gale to gale from West-North-West from 12m to 2am. Fresh breeze to moderate gale from 2 to 3am. Moderate to fresh breeze from 3 to 4am. Weather partially overcast. Bright moon and starlight at intervals. Heavy sea from northward and westward. Ship laboring considerably. Seas coming over her weather bow. Barometer steady from 12 to 2am. Rising from 2 to 4am.

3.00am: Got cast of lead in 30 fathoms water.

4 to8am: Weather cloudy, wind moderate from West-North-West.

7.00am: Went ahead full speed with engine. Moderating sea. Rising barometer.

8am to Meridian: Overcast and cloudy. Rising barometer. Light westerly breeze hauling to southward. Smooth sea. Engaged in restowing and securing deck load.

10.00am: Made all plain sail.

11.30am: Shortened and furled square sails. Passed great quantities of drift wood.

Meridian to 4pm: Light air from West from 12 to 2pm. Calm and light air to light breeze from South-South-East from 2 to 4pm. Partially overcast and pleasant. Long sea from northward. Passed great quantities of drift wood, some large trunks of trees. Passed great many ducks and gulls. Barometer steady.

3.35pm: Set foresail and spanker.

3.50pm: Got cast of lead in 26 fathoms. Hard sandy bottom.

4 to 6pm: Overcast. Wind light from North-East by East. Barometer steady. Smooth sea.

4.35pm: Sighted land ahead. Hauled up to South-South-East and made sail to topsails.

6 to 8pm: Overcast and cloudy. Barometer falling. Moderate breeze from East by North. Under plain sail to topsails and steam.

7.30pm: Tacked ship to northward and eastward.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle to stiff breeze from East by North. Partially overcast and pleasant.

11.50pm: Hauled down jib and main topmast staysail. Barometer steady, smooth sea. Bright moonlight at intervals.

 

 

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500dc367cd0db40002001078: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0141_1.jpg)

 

13 October 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 66.08, Long -169.65 near Mys Dezhneva

From Ostrov Idlidlya to Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Cloudy. Obscured moonlight. Wind fresh from the North-East. Falling barometer. Moderate sea.

12.15am: Wove ship to the southward and eastward.

4 to 8am: Fresh breeze from East-North-East. Falling barometer. Moderate sea.

8am to Meridian: Moderate to fresh breeze from East-North-East to South-East by East. Barometer falling. From 8 to 11am overcast, thick and rainy. Between 11 and 12m lifted and stopped raining. Saw great many ducks during watch.

9.20am: Got cast of lead in 24 fathoms water. Grey sand.

10.20am: Took in foresail and spanker.

11.10am: Got cast of lead in 23 fathoms water. Grey sand.

11.40am: Sighted land from 3 pts on port bow to starboard beam. Most eastern land Cape East.

Meridian to 4pm: Cloudy. Wind fresh from South-East by East, South-South-East last hour and moderating. Barometer steady. Moderate sea.

4 to 6pm: Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising. Wind variable in force and direction. Force varying from 2 to 7. Direction from South to South-East.

4.00pm: Tacked ship to the eastward.

5.00pm: Set topgallant sails, main top and topgallant staysails, mizzen topmast staysail, spanker and gaff topsail.

6 to 8pm: Moderate to fresh breeze from South-East by East to South-East by South. Clear and pleasant. Moderate sea from southward and eastward. Barometer steady.

7.10pm: Took in mizzen topgallant staysail.

7.45pm: Moon rose. Took in jib.

8pm to Midnight: Weather pleasant. Wind fresh from South. Barometer steady. Moderate sea.

 

 

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500dc367cd0db4000200107a: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0142_1.jpg)

 

14 October 1881

Position: Arctic Ocean

Lat 65.61, Long -170.62 near Mys Nunyamo (North Head) at 6pm

From Ostrov Idlidlya to Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and till 4am: Clear. Southerly breeze with fresh squalls.

1.00am: Tacked ship to the southward and westward.

4 to 8am: Gentle to stiff breeze. South-West by West to South-South-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising.

4.25am: Tacked ship to southward and eastward. At daylight sighted land ahead. Cape East bore (p.c.) East-South-East.

6.45am: Changed course and stood for East Cape. Smooth sea. Saw great many whales.

7.00am: Set jib and main topmast staysail.

8am to Meridian: Clear and pleasant. Wind light from South-South-West. Rising barometer. Standing through Behrings Straits.

Meridian to 4pm: Clear and pleasant. Light South-South-West breeze. Rising barometer. Cirrocumulus clouds. Smooth sea.

1.45pm: Shortened and furled sail and headed South-West by South under steam.

4 to 6pm: Light air from the southward. Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising.

6.00pm: North Head bore (p.c.) South-West 1/2 West.

6 to 8pm: Clear. Light airs from South. Barometer steady. Smooth sea.

7.00pm: Set jib, fore and main topgallant staysails.

8pm to Midnight: Clear and pleasant. Light breeze from West-North-West hauling to the northward. Barometer steady. At 8pm hauled up to South-West, at 9.30 to South-West by West, and at 10.30 to West.

11.00pm: Came to in 11 fathoms water with starboard anchor, veering to 30 fathoms on starboard chain. Mud bottom.

 

 

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500dc367cd0db4000200107c: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0143_1.jpg)

 

15 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Light air to light breeze from North-North-East to North-East. Overcast and pleasant from 12 to 3am. Foggy from 3 to 4am. Barometer steady.

4 to 8am: Overcast and foggy. Calm.

6.00am: Got underway and stood up to anchorage North of Lutke's Island.

8.00am: Came to in 17 fathoms water with port anchor and veered to 60 fathoms chain. Whaler 'Progress' in the harbor. Barometer steady. Banked fires.

8am to Meridian: Overcast and calm. Barometer falling. Cumulonimbus clouds.

Meridian to 4pm: Same as preceding watch.

4 to 8pm: Same as preceding watch. Except steady barometer.

8pm to Midnight: Same.

 

 

500dc367cd0db4000200107d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0144_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db4000200107e: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0144_1.jpg)

 

16 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commencing and until 4am: Calm. Clear and pleasant. Barometer falling. Distilling.

4 to 8am: Light air from North. Clear and pleasant. Distilling. Barometer falling.

8am to Meridian: Light air from northward and eastward. Clear and pleasant.

11.30am: Commanding Officer visited the whaler 'Progress'. Spread fires and got under way took 'Progress' in tow. Barometer falling. Great many natives on board.

Meridian to 4pm: Light northerly air. Clear and pleasant. Towing barque out of harbor. Barometer unsteady.

3.30pm: Cast off from 'Progress' and stood back into the harbor. Sent mails by 'Progress'.

4 to 6pm: Light air from northward and eastward. Clear and pleasant. Working back to anchorage on starboard chain. Banked fires and commenced distilling.

6 to 8pm: Calm. Clear and pleasant. Distilling. Banked fires.

8pm to Midnight: Light air to light breeze from North-East to East. Clear and pleasant. Barometer falling.

9.00pm: Hauled fires.

 

 

500dc367cd0db4000200107f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0145_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001080: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0145_1.jpg)

 

17 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Light air from East. Partially overcast and pleasant. Barometer steady.

4 to 8am: Light air to light breeze from East to East-South-East. Overcast.

6.00am: Started fires under hoisting engine for heating purposes. Let dogs ashore.

8am to Meridian: Overcast. Light East by South breeze. Rising barometer. Engaged in landing lumber.

Meridian to 4pm: Light breeze from East-South-East to South-East. Steady barometer. Weather overcast and drizzling first two hours. Partially clear last two. Engaged in landing lumber.

4 to 8pm: South-East breeze. Rising barometer. Cumulonimbus clouds.

8pm to Midnight: South-South-East breeze. Steady barometer. Overcast until 10pm. Closed clear and pleasant.

Editor's note: Jeannette: Alexey, another member of DeLongs party died today

 

500dc367cd0db40002001081: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0146_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001082: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0146_1.jpg)

 

18 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Clear and pleasant. Rising barometer. South-South-East breeze.

4 to 8am: Southerly breeze. Falling barometer. Nimbus clouds.

8am to Meridian: Southerly breeze. Rising barometer. Clear and pleasant weather. Engaged in restowing lumber not sent ashore.

Meridian to 4pm: Overcast. Southerly breeze. Barometer rose 1st hour. Steady at 29.94 during the other three hours.

4 to 8pm: South-East breeze and calm. Rising barometer.

8.00pm: Light breeze sprang up from the North-East.

8pm to Midnight: Light northerly breeze hauling to North-West. Barometer falling slightly. Foggy and damp after first hour, rainy last hour.

 

 

500dc367cd0db40002001083: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0147_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001084: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0147_1.jpg)

 

19 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Foggy and rainy. Falling barometer. Westerly breeze. Calm first hour. Light westerly breeze during remainder of watch.

4 to 8am: Light westerly breeze, shifting to East by South after first hour. Barometer steady.

8am to Meridian: Clear and pleasant. Rising barometer. Engaged in building house on deck. Sending down crows nest and topgallant yards.

Meridian to 4pm: Light breeze from North-East and calm. Overcast and cloudy. Falling barometer. Engaged in putting up deck house and otherwise preparing ship for winter.

4 to 8pm: Light North-East by East breeze and calm. Overcast and pleasant. Steady barometer.

8pm to Midnight: Clear and pleasant. Westerly breeze. Steady barometer. Cumulonimbus clouds.

 

 

500dc367cd0db40002001085: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0148_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001086: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0148_1.jpg)

 

20 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

 Commences and until 4am: Light to gentle breeze from the North. Clear and pleasant. Barometer steady.

4 to 8am: Light to moderate breeze from the North. Clear and pleasant. Barometer falling from 4 to 5am. Steady afterwards.

8am to Meridian: Moderate to stiff breeze from North. Clear and pleasant. Barometer steady. Engaged in clearing ship and preparing for winter quarters. Carpenter and mate engaged in building reading room between main and foremast for men.

10.00am: Whale ship 'Rainbow' anchored inside of Cape North.

11.30am: Sent boat to communicate with whale ship.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle to fresh breeze from North. Clear and pleasant, wind blowing in squalls.

4.00pm: Whaleboat returned from whaler, reported that the whaler stopped for water. Also reported all the whalers leaving the Arctic. Barometer steady. Engaged in building smoking room and preparing ship for winter quarters.

4 to 6pm: Moderate to fresh breeze from North. Clear and pleasant. Wind blowing in squalls. Barometer steady. Engaged in preparing for winter quarters.

6 to 8pm: Stiff to fresh breeze from North. Clear and pleasant. Wind blowing in squalls. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Stiff to fresh breeze from North. Clear and pleasant. Wind blowing in squalls. Barometer falling.

 

 

500dc367cd0db40002001087: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0149_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001088: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0149_1.jpg)

 

21 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Moderate to fresh breeze from North. Clear and pleasant. Barometer steady. Wind moderating considerably by 4am.

4 to 8am: Gentle to moderate breeze from North. Clear and pleasant. Barometer falling. Whaler 'Rainbow' left during the night.

8am to Meridian: Fresh breeze to moderate gale from the North. Steady barometer. Cirrocumulus clouds.

Meridian to 4pm: Wind increasing and barometer falling. Otherwise same as preceding watch. Sent down topgallant masts.

4 to 8pm: Wind still increasing.

5.00pm: Let go starboard anchor, veered to 75 fathoms on port and to 30 fathoms on starboard chains. Sent down topgallant rigging.

8pm to Midnight: Wind moderating but barometer falling.

Editor's note: Jeannette: Lee and Kaack of DeLong's party dead

 

500dc367cd0db40002001089: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0150_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db4000200108a: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0150_1.jpg)

 

22 October 1881

 

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Freshening breeze from the North. Falling barometer. Threatening sky.

4 to 8am: Fresh breeze to moderate gale from the northward. Falling barometer. Moderate sea.

8am to Meridian: Fresh to moderate gale from northward. Partially overcast and pleasant. Wind blowing in squalls. Barometer falling. Engaged in preparing ship for winter – building house on deck for men's smoking quarters. Sent topgallant rigging and topgallant sails down in port upper bunker. Mended the furl of all sails – passing extra gaskets.

Meridian to 4pm: Fresh to moderate gale from North. Partially overcast and pleasant. Barometer rising. Preparing ship for winter quarters.

4 to 6pm: Fresh breeze to strong gale from North. Occasional heavy squalls. Clear. Moderate sea.

5.10pm: Started fires.

6 to 8pm: Moderate breeze to gale from North. Partially overcast and pleasant. Wind blowing at intervals very heavy. Blowing freshest when clear overhead. Barometer steady.

7.00pm: Started ahead 1 bell. Going 4 bells at intervals.

8pm to Midnight: Weather cloudy. Gale from North by West. Heavy in squalls. Barometer steady. Using engine to ease chains.

 

 

500dc367cd0db4000200108b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0151_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db4000200108c: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0151_1.jpg)

 

23 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Fresh breeze to strong gale from the North. Steaming slowly to relieve chains. Heavy squalls at intervals. Steady barometer. Nimbus clouds.

4 to 8am: Moderate breeze to moderate gale from North. Partially overcast and pleasant. Engine turning over to relieve chain – speed regulated according to the strength of the wind. Blowing heavy squalls at intervals, condensing. Blowing freshest when clear overhead. Barometer rising.

8am to Meridian: Weather cloudy. Wind heavy in squalls from North by West. Barometer steady. Using engine through squalls.

Meridian to 4pm: Cloudy. Barometer ranging between 29.39 and 29.40. Fresh breeze to moderate gale first two hours. Gale to heavy gale last two hours. Steaming full speed during last two hours. Engaged during watch in sending down upper topsail yards.

4 to 6pm: Gale to heavy gale from North from 4 to 5pm. Heavy gale to stiff breeze from North from 5 to 6pm. Blowing steady from 4 to 5pm and squally last hour. Partially overcast and pleasant. Barometer rising. Lost overboard a deep sea lead and 14 fathoms lead line. Sent down upper topsail yards. From 4 to 5.30pm steaming ahead four (4) bells to relieve chain.

6 to 8pm: [no entry]

8pm to Midnight: Barometer rising. Wind moderating. Closed with clear sky overhead and occasional squalls.

 

 

500dc367cd0db4000200108d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0152_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db4000200108e: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0152_1.jpg)

 

24 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Moderate breeze to gale from North. Clear and pleasant. Blowing in heavy squalls. Barometer very unsteady going from 42 to 38 in 20 minutes. Used engine to relieve chain. Going four (4) bells at strongest puffs.

3:20am: Saw a very vivid meteor in the northward and westward.

4 to 8am: Weather clear. Wind fresh in squalls from North increasing to moderate gale. Falling barometer.

8am to Meridian: Clear. Fresh squalls from the North. Unsteady barometer. Cumulonimbus clouds.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to fresh breeze from North. Partially overcast and pleasant. Light fall of snow. Barometer unsteady. Squally. Banked fires. Employed in preparing ship for winter quarters. Sending down light rigging and light braces.

4 to 8pm: Cloudy. Wind in fresh squalls from North. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle to fresh breeze from North. Clear and pleasant blowing in squalls with snow. Barometer steady.

 

 

500dc367cd0db4000200108f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0153_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001090: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0153_1.jpg)

 

25 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Cold. Wind fresh in squalls from North. Snow during last two hours of watch. Slightly rising barometer.

4 to 8am: Moderate breeze from North. Barometer rising. Cumulonimbus clouds. Unbent main topmast staysail, mainsail and main trysail.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to fresh breeze from the North. Clear and pleasant. Barometer steady. Engaged in preparing ship for winter quarters. Sent down main sails in after port bunker. Building house on deck. Banked fires. Natives visited ship.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to stiff breeze in squalls from North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer steady. Finished building deck house. Whale boat went ashore to feed dogs. Returned at 3.30pm with some difficulty. Engaged in preparing ship for winter quarters.

4 to 6pm: Moderate breeze from North-West by North. Clear and pleasant. Cold. Barometer steady.

6 to 8pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from North-West by North. Clear and cold. Barometer steady.

8pm to Midnight: Light to stiff breeze in squalls from North-North-West. Clear and cold. Bright starlight. Barometer steady.

 

 

500dc367cd0db40002001091: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0154_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001092: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0154_1.jpg)

 

26 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Light to stiff breeze from North-North-West. Clear and cold. Bright starlight. Barometer rising. Squally.

4 to 8am: Gentle to fresh breeze from North-North-West. Clear and cold. Barometer rising. Squally.

8am to Meridian: Moderate North-North-West breeze. Barometer steady. Cumulonimbus clouds.

Meridian to 4pm: Steady barometer. Moderate West-North-West breeze. Cumulonimbus clouds.

4 to 8pm: Same as preceding watch.

8pm to Midnight: Same.

 

 

500dc367cd0db40002001093: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0155_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001094: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0155_1.jpg)

 

27 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Clear and pleasant with moderate North-North-West breeze. Steady barometer and cumulonimbus clouds.

4 to 8am: Moderate North-North-West breeze. Barometer fell .02 during second hour and remained steady at 29.58. Cumulonimbus clouds.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to moderate breeze from North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer unsteady. Natives visited ship.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle to moderate breeze North by West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer falling. No events of importance.

4 to 6pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from North by West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer falling. No events of importance.

6 to 8pm: Gentle to fresh breeze from North by West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer falling.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate to fresh breeze from North by West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer steady. Very brilliant display of the aurora visible from North-West by North to North-East by North. Brightest portion North-North-West.

 

 

500dc367cd0db40002001095: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0156_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001096: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0156_1.jpg)

 

28 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Moderate to fresh breeze from North by West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer steady. Squally. Bright display of the aurora from North-West by North to North-East by East.

4 to 8am: Moderate to fresh breeze from North by West. Partially overcast and pleasant. Barometer falling. Squally.

8am to Meridian: North by West breeze, blowing in fresh squalls. Overcast last hour. Barometer steady.

Meridian to 4pm: Same as preceding. Snowing last two hours.

4 to 8pm: Barometer steady at 29.48. Squalls from the North.

8pm to Midnight: Sky clearing and barometer rising.

Editor's note: Jeannette: Iverson of DeLong's party dead

 

500dc367cd0db40002001097: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0157_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db40002001098: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0157_1.jpg)

 

29 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Clear. Squally. Barometer gradually rising.

1.15am: Brilliant aurora began. Shortly after fell calm. Then sprang up suddenly from the North in a heavy squall during which the barometer fell to 29.50. Moderated as suddenly as it commenced and after 2am settled to steady breeze.

4 to 8am: Barometer rising. Wind moderating.

8am to Meridian: Gentle breeze to stiff breeze from North to North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising. Engaged in cleaning out between decks.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to stiff breeze from North to North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising. Squally. Engaged in cleaning out between decks.

4 to 6pm: Gentle to stiff breeze from North by West to North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising. Squally.

6 to 8pm: Gentle to fresh breeze from North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising. Wind not so squally.

8pm to Midnight: Light to gentle breeze from North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Snowing lightly at intervals. Barometer rising.

Editor's note: Jeannette: Dressier of DeLong's party died in early morning

 

500dc367cd0db40002001099: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0158_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db4000200109a: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0158_1.jpg)

 

30 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Light to stiff breeze from North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Display of aurora. Wind very squally. Barometer rising.

4 to 8am: Light to moderate breeze from North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising. Wind not so squally.

8am to Meridian: Moderate North-North-West breeze. Steady barometer. Cumulonimbus clouds.

Meridian to 4pm: North-North-West breeze. Barometer steady. Cumulonimbus clouds. Smooth sea.

4 to 8pm: Weather same as preceding watch.

8pm to Midnight: Northerly breeze. Barometer steady at 29.84. Cirrocumulus clouds. Closed pleasant.

Editor's note: Jeannette: Final entry of DeLong's diary. Boyd, Goertz and Collins dead.

The only survivors of the Jeannette crew were the party lead by chief engineer Melville. This group was rescued by natives soon after reaching the Lena Delta in September.

 

500dc367cd0db4000200109b: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0159_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db4000200109c: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0159_1.jpg)

 

31 October 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Commenced clear and pleasant with moderate breeze from the North. Barometer steady at 29.83. Cumulonimbus clouds.

4 to 8am: Clear and pleasant first two hours. Overcast and snowing last two. Barometer steady. Light northerly breeze.

8am to Meridian: Light airs and calm. Barometer steady.

Meridian to 4pm: Light airs and calm. Steady barometer.

4 to 8pm: Same as preceding watch.

8pm to Midnight: Northerly breeze. Falling barometer. Snowing after 9pm.

 

 

LOGS FOR NOVEMBER 1881

 

500dc367cd0db4000200109d: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0160_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db4000200109e: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0160_1.jpg)

 

1 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Clear and pleasant. Moderate squalls from the North. Falling barometer. Cumulus clouds.

4 to 8am: Freshening breeze from the North. Barometer falling.

8am to Meridian: Fresh breeze from North. Clear and pleasant. Engaged in cleaning out main hold. Banked fires. Barometer steady.

Meridian to 4pm: Stiff breeze to moderate gale from North. Partially overcast and pleasant.

2.20pm: Spread fires.

2.40pm: Steamed ahead to relieve chain. Secured boats for sea. Put up anemometer. Registered 50 miles per hour at 4pm. Barometer falling.

4 to 6pm: Fresh breeze to moderate gale from North. Partially overcast and pleasant. Barometer falling.

6.00pm: Anemometer registered 50 miles per hour at 6pm.

6 to 8pm: Stiff to fresh breeze from North. Clear and pleasant. Clouds passing over rapidly to the southward. Barometer steady.

6.30pm: Wind moderated. Stopped engine.

8pm to Midnight: no entries

 

 

500dc367cd0db4000200109f: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0161_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010a0: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0161_1.jpg)

 

2 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Blowing a strong gale from the North.

2.30am: Spread fires and turned over engine to relieve chain.

4 to 8am: Fresh breeze to gale from North. Partially overcast and pleasant. Steaming to relieve chain.

6.00am: Stopped engine.

6.30am: Started engine again.

7.00am: The anemometer registered 40 miles.

8.00am: Registered 55 miles as velocity of wind per hour. Barometer falling.

8am to Meridian: Blowing a gale from the North. Steady barometer.

Meridian to 4pm: Blowing a gale from the North. Anemometer from 2 to 3pm showed 56.7 miles, and for 1 minute showed a rate of 67 miles per hour; for a portion of that interval the rate was much greater. Barometer falling steadily.

1.00pm: Started steaming.

4 to 8pm: Wind moderating. Stopped engine and banked fires. Barometer rising.

8pm to Midnight: Wind freshening. Barometer falling. Closed blowing a moderate gale from the North.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010a1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0162_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010a2: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0162_1.jpg)

 

3 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Commenced clear with strong wind squalls from the North. Moderating and barometer rising after first hour.

4 to 8am: Fresh northerly breeze. Steady barometer.

8am to Meridian: Stiff breeze from the North. Clear and pleasant. Anemometer showed average of 24 miles per hour. Barometer rising.

Meridian to 4pm: Stiff breeze from northward. Clear and pleasant. Barometer steady. Anemometer showed average of 29.5 miles per hour.

4 to 8pm: Moderate to from breeze from North. Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising. Anemometer showed an average of 38 miles per hour.

8pm to Midnight: Light to moderate breeze from North to North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising. Anemometer showed an average of 25 miles per hour.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010a3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0163_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010a4: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0163_1.jpg)

 

4 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Gentle breeze from North by West. Partially overcast and pleasant. Anemometer showed an average of 25 miles per hour for watch. Barometer rising.

4 to 8am: Light to gentle breeze from North by West to North-North-West. Partially overcast and pleasant. Anemometer showed average of 23 miles per hour. Barometer steady.

8am to Meridian: Freshening breeze from North-North-West. Barometer steady.

10.00am: Got underway and shifted anchorage to North shore.

Noon: Came to in 9 fathoms water. Soft blue mud bottom. Veering to 45 fathoms on port chain. Anemometer showed an average of 29.6 miles per hour throughout the watch.

Meridian to 4pm: Barometer rising. North-North-West breeze. Engaged in making ship snug. Refurled sail, sent down royal yards from topmast rigging. Hauled taut gear and secured everything about deck. Anemometer showed an average of 18.6 miles per hour throughout the watch.

4 to 8pm: Moderate North-North-West breeze hauling to westward. Barometer rising slowly. Cumulonimbus clouds. Anemometer showed an average of 23.4 miles per hour throughout the watch.

8pm to Midnight: West-North-West breeze hauling to North. Snowing last two hours. Barometer falling. Anemometer showed an average of 23.75 miles per hour throughout the watch.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010a5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0164_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010a6: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0164_1.jpg)

 

5 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Clear and pleasant. Barometer falling. North-West breeze. Anemometer showed an average of 18.75 miles per hour throughout the watch.

4 to 8am: North-West by West breeze. Barometer rising. Average speed of wind 29.75 miles per hour.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to moderate breeze from North-West by West to North-West. Clear and pleasant. Average speed of wind per anemometer 23 miles per hour. Barometer unsteady.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to stiff breeze from North-West to North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Average speed of wind per anemometer 26.6 miles per hour.

4 to 8pm: Moderate to stiff breeze from North-West. Clear and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour per anemometer 29 miles.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate to stiff breeze from North-West. Clear and pleasant. Average speed of wind per anemometer 29.5 miles per hour. Barometer rising.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010a7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0165_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010a8: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0165_1.jpg)

 

6 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Fresh to moderate breeze from North-West. Clear and pleasant. Average speed of wind per anemometer 30 miles per hour.

4 to 8am: Moderate to light breeze from West-North-West. Partially overcast and light snow. Average speed of wind per anemometer 25 miles per hour. Barometer rising.

8am to Meridian: Light to moderate breeze from West-North-West to North-West. Partially overcast and some snow. Average speed of wind per anemometer 23.7 miles per hour. Barometer rising.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to light breeze from North-West by West. Partially overcast with some snow. Average speed of wind 24.5 miles per hour. Barometer rising.

4 to 8pm: Light to gentle breeze from North-West by West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising. Moderate sea. Average speed of wind 22 miles per hour.

8pm to Midnight: Light to moderate breeze from North-West by West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer steady. Long sea. Average speed of wind per hour 23 miles.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010a9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0166_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010aa: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0166_1.jpg)

 

7 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Light to moderate breeze from North-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising. Average speed of wind 21.7 miles per hour.

4 to 8am: Gentle to moderate breeze from North-West to North-North-West. Clear pleasant. Snowing between 5 and 6am. Average speed of wind per hour 17.7 miles.

8am to Meridian: Clear and pleasant. Moderate North-North-West breeze. Rising barometer. Speed of wind 27 miles per hour.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle North-North-West breeze. Steady barometer. Snowing throughout the watch. Average speed of wind 13.55 miles per hour.

4 to 8pm: Light breeze from the North-North-West. Steady barometer. Speed of wind 19.6 miles per hour.

8pm to Midnight: Clear and pleasant. Snowing last hour. Barometer steady. Speed of (wind) 18.8 miles per hour.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010ab: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0167_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010ac: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0167_1.jpg)

 

8 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Snowing. Barometer falling. North to North-West breeze. Speed of wind 13.45 miles per hour. Calm 3rd hour.

4 to 8am: Moderate North-North-West breeze. Falling barometer, snowing. Speed of wind 18.05 miles per hour.

8am to Meridian: North-North-West breeze. Falling barometer. Passing snow squalls. Speed of wind 18.3 miles per hour.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate North-North-West breeze. Snow falling. Barometer falling slightly. Speed of wind 24.9 miles per hour.

4 to 8pm: North-North-West breeze. Barometer steady. Speed of wind 23 miles per hour.

8pm to Midnight: North-North-West breeze. Steady barometer. Speed of wind 19.7 miles per hour.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010ad: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0168_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010ae: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0168_1.jpg)

 

9 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Squally and partially overcast. Moderate North-North-West breeze. Falling barometer. Speed of wind 22 miles per hour.

4 to 8am: North-North-West breeze. Passing snow squalls. Rising barometer. Speed of wind 24 miles per hour.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to stiff breeze from North-North-West. Overcast, foggy and snowing at intervals. Barometer rising. Average speed of wind 25 miles per hour.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to fresh breeze from North-North-West to North-West. Clear and cold with snow at intervals. Average speed of wind 31 miles per hour.

4 to 8pm: Moderate to stiff breeze from North-West. Clear and pleasant. Barometer rising. Average speed of wind per hour 32.7 miles.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate to fresh breeze from North-West. Clear and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 35.5 miles.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010af: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0169_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010b0: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0169_1.jpg)

 

10 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commencing and until 4am: Stiff to fresh breeze from North-West to North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Squally. Average speed of wind per hour 31.2 miles.

4 to 8am: Stiff to fresh breeze from West-North-West to North-West by West. Clear and pleasant. Squally. Average speed of wind per hour 38.5 miles.

8am to Meridian: Fresh breeze from North-West by West. Steady barometer. Speed of wind 35 miles per hour.

Meridian to 4pm: North-West breeze. Barometer steady. Speed of wind 36 miles per hour.

4 to 8pm: North-West breeze. Barometer rising. Speed of wind 28 miles per hour.

8pm to Midnight: North-East breeze. Rising barometer. Speed of wind 35 miles per hour.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010b1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0170_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010b2: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0170_1.jpg)

 

11 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Began with moderate breeze from North-West. Barometer rising. Snowing. Speed of wind 22 miles per hour.

4 to 8am: Rising barometer. North-West breeze hauling to northward. Speed of wind 21 miles per hour.

8am to Meridian: Moderate to light breeze from North to North by West. Overcast but pleasant. Average speed of wind 20.5 miles per hour. Young ice commencing to form. Engaged in making tent and sledge.

Meridian to 4pm: Light breeze from North-North-West. Overcast but pleasant. Snowing. Young ice forming rapidly. Average speed of wind 14.7 miles per hour. Engaged in making tent and sledge.

4 to 8pm: Light air and light breeze from North-North-West. Overcast and pleasant. Quite cold. Average speed of wind 11.2 miles per hour.

8pm to Midnight: Light breeze from North-North-West. Overcast and snowing 1st hour. Partially overcast and pleasant. Remainder of watch. Average speed of wind per hour 14 miles.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010b3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0171_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010b4: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0171_1.jpg)

 

12 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Light air to light breeze from North-North-West. Partially overcast and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 10.9 miles.

4 to 8am: Light airs and light breezes from North-North-West to North. Partially overcast and pleasant first three hours. Overcast and snowing last hour. Average speed of wind per hour 11.5 miles.

8am to Meridian: Overcast and snowing. Gentle breeze from the North. Rising barometer. Speed of wind 4 miles per hour.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle North-East breeze. Barometer rising. Speed of wind 4 miles per hour.

4 to 8pm: Light North-East breeze. Rising barometer. Speed of wind 6 miles per hour.

8pm to Midnight: Light westerly breeze. Steady barometer. Speed of wind 8 miles per hour.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010b5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0172_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010b6: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0172_1.jpg)

 

13 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Overcast. Barometer falling. West-North-West breeze. Speed of wind 10 miles per hour.

4 to 8am: Freshening breeze from South-East. Barometer falling. Speed of wind 19 miles per hour.

8am to Meridian: Moderate to stiff breeze from South-East to South-East by East. Overcast and snowing. Barometer falling. Ice breaking up caused by a long swell from outside of island. Average speed of wind per hour 26 miles.

Meridian to 4pm: Stiff to moderate breeze from South-East by East. Overcast and snowing. Ice well broken up and driven into the shore. Long swell from the southward. Veered to 75 fathoms on starboard chain. Average speed of wind per hour 21.7 miles.

4 to 8pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from South-East. Overcast and snowing. Long swell from southward. Average speed of wind per hour 43.7 miles.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate breeze to light airs from South-East to South-South-East. Overcast and snowing first two hours. Blue sky overhead and pleasant last two. Swell moderating. Average speed of wind per hour 8 miles.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010b7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0173_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010b8: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0173_1.jpg)

 

14 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Calm to light airs from South-South-East. Partially overcast and pleasant. Barometer rising a little. Average speed of wind per hour 6 miles. Smooth sea. Ice nearly all gone. Little on the beach.

4 to 8am: Calm and light airs from South to South-East. Partially overcast and pleasant. Barometer rising. Average speed of wind per hour 7.9 miles.

8am to Meridian: Light breeze from South-East. Barometer rising. Speed of wind 4 miles per hour.

Meridian to 4pm: South-East breeze. Falling barometer. Speed of wind 5 miles per hour.

4 to 8pm: South-East breeze. Variable barometer. Speed of wind 3 miles per hour.

8pm to Midnight: Light variable airs and calm. Barometer steady. Speed of wind 4 miles per hour.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010b9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0174_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010ba: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0174_1.jpg)

 

15 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Overcast. Light West-North-West breeze. Barometer falling. Speed of wind 7 miles per hour.

4 to 8am: Snowing. Light North-West breeze. Settling barometer. Speed of wind 11 miles per hour.

8am to Meridian: Calm to light air from North-North-West to North-West. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind 3.7 miles per hour.

Meridian to 4pm: Light breeze from North. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 11.5 miles. Ensign H.J Hunt and party preparing for a sledge trip.

4 to 8pm: Light to gentle breeze from North-West to North-North-West. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind 12.5 miles. Brought nine dogs aboard for Hunt's trip.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle to moderate breeze from North-North-West. Overcast and snowing 1st hour. Overcast from 9 to 11pm. Partially overcast and pleasant last hour. Average speed of wind per hour 22 miles.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010bb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0175_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010bc: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0175_1.jpg)

 

16 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commencing and until 4am: Moderate to stiff breeze from North-North-West. Partially overcast, snowing last hour. Average speed of wind per hour 3.5 miles.

4 to 8am: Moderate to light breeze from North-North-West to North. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 16 miles.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to light breeze from North to North by East. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 14 miles.

Meridian to 4pm: Light airs to gentle breeze from North by East to North-East by North. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 11.5 miles. Ensign H.J. Hunt and party making preparations for sledge trip to party left on Siberian Coast.

4 to 8pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from North-East by North to North-North-East. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind 23.5 miles per hour.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle to moderate breeze from North-North-East. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind 26 miles per hour.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010bd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0176_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010be: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0176_1.jpg)

 

17 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

 

 

Commencing and until 4am: Gentle to moderate breeze from North-North-East. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 23.5 miles.

4 to 8am: Gentle to moderate breeze from North. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 23.5 miles.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to stiff breeze from North. Overcast and snowing. Ensign H.J. Hunt in charge, T. Lowden (cF) [Thomas Loudon] and H. Shuman (2.m.) left ship with 9 dogs and sledge with 7 days rations for purpose of visiting party left on coast of Siberia. Boat had considerable difficulty in getting ashore. Average speed of wind per hour 25.5 miles.

Meridian to 4pm: Stiff to fresh breeze from North. Overcast, squally and snowing. Very disagreeable weather. Barometer falling. Average speed of wind 33.7 knots [sic] per hour. Ensign H.J. Hunt returned on board, having left party ashore and reported that the dogs could not drag the sledge – decided to lessen load and try again tomorrow.

4 to 8pm: Moderate to stiff breeze from North. Overcast, squally and snowing – very disagreeable weather. Average speed of wind 31.7 knots per hour. Barometer falling.

8pm to Midnight: Stiff to fresh breeze from North. Overcast. Squally and snowing. A severe night! Average speed of wind per hour 36.5 knots.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010bf: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0177_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010c0: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0177_1.jpg)

 

18 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Stiff to fresh breeze from North. Overcast. Squally and snowing. A severe night. Average speed of wind per hour 35.9 miles. Barometer falling.

4 to 8am: Moderate to fresh breeze from North to North-North-West. Overcast and snowing. Squally until 6am when wind shifted. Average speed of wind per hour 28.7 knots. Barometer falling.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to light breeze from North by West to North. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 16.5 knots.

11.00am: Ensign H.J. Hunt left ship and joined party ashore.

Meridian to 4pm: Calm to light breeze from North. Overcast, foggy and snowing.

2.00pm: Ensign Hunt and party started out on trip taking provisions for dogs and men for 10 days and a few trade articles.

4 to 8pm: Calm to light air in puffs from West and West-North-West. Overcast, foggy and snowing. Snow settled on surface of water producing a thin layer of loose ice. Barometer going down very low. No unusual change in the weather. Average speed of wind per hour 2 knots.

8pm to Midnight: Calm to light airs from West-North-West to North-West first three hours, latter part of last hour gentle breeze from West. Overcast and pleasant, foggy around horizon and occasionally few stars visible overhead. Average speed of wind per hour 2 miles.

9.00pm: Barometer commenced to rise. Rising rapidly first hour.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010c1: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0178_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010c2: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0178_1.jpg)

 

19 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commenced and until 4am: Light to moderate breeze from West-North-West. Partially clear with light squalls. Barometer rising. Average speed of wind 22 miles per hour. Water soon cleared of snow when wind came up.

4 to 8am: Moderate to stiff breeze from West-North-West from 4 to 6am and from West by South remainder of watch. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 35 miles.

8am to Meridian: Shifting light to stiff breeze as per columns. Shifting suddenly. Partially overcast and disagreeable weather. Barometer rising rapidly. Average speed of wind per hour 20.5 miles.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to light shifting breeze, as per columns. Partially overcast and pleasant. Could see to seaward ice coming into harbor, but swell soon destroyed it all. Considerable swell from seaward. Average speed of wind per hour 25.7 miles.

4 to 8pm: Light airs to gentle breeze from West to North-West, clear and pleasant. Wind went down and water became very smooth by 8pm. Average speed of wind per hour 13.2 knots.

8pm to Midnight: Light airs to light breeze from North. Clear and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 13.2 knots.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010c3: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0179_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010c4: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0179_1.jpg)

 

20 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

 

 

Commences and until 4am: Light air to light breeze from N, clear and pleasant first two hours. Overcast and snowing last two. Average speed of wind per hour 8.2 miles. Young ice forming.

4 to 8am: Gentle to moderate breeze from North to North-West. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 19.7 miles. Young ice broken up by swell.

8am to Meridian: Light breeze to gentle breeze from North-North-West. Overcast and snowing first hour. Clear and pleasant afterwards. Young ice forming. Average speed of wind per hour 18.2 miles.

Meridian to 4pm: Light air to light breeze from North-West by North. Clear and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 13.2 miles.

4 to 8pm: Calm to light breeze from North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 8.7 miles.

8pm to Midnight: Light to moderate breeze from North-North-West. Clear and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 14.5 miles. Young ice broken up.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010c5: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0180_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010c6: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0180_1.jpg)

 

21 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

 

 

Commences and until 4am: Gentle to moderate breeze from North-North-West. Partially overcast and pleasant. Display of aurora during the watch – not very bright. Average speed of wind 23 miles per hour.

4 to 8am: Gentle to moderate breeze from North-North-West to North. Partially overcast and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 21 miles.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to moderate breeze from North. Overcast and snowing last two hours. Average speed of wind per hour 21 miles.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle to stiff breeze from North. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 33.5 miles.

4 to 8pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from North. Overcast and snowing first two hours. Partially overcast and snowing last two. Average speed of wind per hour 27.7 miles.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle to moderate breeze from North. Partially overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 33.7. A very disagreeable night. Wind very cold. Very dark.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010c7: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0181_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010c8: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0181_1.jpg)

 

22 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Gentle to stiff breeze from North. Partially clear first two hours. Overcast last two. Very disagreeable weather. Wind very cold. Average speed of wind 27.2 miles per hour. Very dark.

4 to 8am: Stiff to gentle breeze from North. Overcast and disagreeable weather. Average speed of wind per hour 27.7 miles.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to moderate breeze from North. Snowing. Overcast and misty last hour. Average speed of wind 27.7 miles per hour.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from North. Overcast and snowing. Misty first three hours. Average speed of wind per hour 27.7 miles.

4 to 8pm: Moderate to light breeze from North. Overcast and snowing first hour. Average speed of wind per hour 21 miles.

8pm to Midnight: Gentle breeze to light airs from North. Overcast and pleasant. Average speed of wind 14.5 miles per hour.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010c9: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0182_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010ca: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0182_1.jpg)

 

23 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Light airs to light breeze from North-North-West. Overcast and pleasant. A little blue sky between 1 and 2am. Average speed of wind per hour 12.5 miles.

4 to 8am: Light air to gentle breeze from North-North-West. Overcast and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 17 miles.

8am to Meridian: Died out calm, then calm to light airs from North-North-East from 8 to 11am. Calm to light airs from North-North-West last hour.

Meridian to 4pm: Light airs to light breeze from North-North-East. Overcast and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 10 miles.

4 to 8pm: Light breeze to light airs from North-North-East to North-East. Overcast first hour. Partially overcast and pleasant. Remainder of watch. Average speed of wind per hour 11.7 miles.

8pm to Midnight: Light airs to stiff breeze from North-North-East to North. Overcast and threatening. Snowing first two hours. Very brilliant and grand display of the aurora, the brightest part in North-West. The light extended from East to West by the North and to the zenith. The light was so bright at times that objects could be seen at some distance more distinctly than during the brightest moonlight. The stars were particularly bright. The light would pass over the heavens like waves, the outer edges of which were of dark blue color it would then run into each other like waves seen in shoal water. Average speed of wind per hour 21 miles.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010cb: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0183_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010cc: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0183_1.jpg)

 

24 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Gentle to stiff breeze from North, blowing in puffs. Partially overcast and pleasant. Display of aurora but not so bright as previous watch, but in same direction and same form. Average speed of wind per hour 20.5 miles.

4 to 8am: Light to stiff breeze from North to North-East blowing in squalls. Very disagreeable weather, threatening looking. Average speed of wind per hour 27.5 miles.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to moderate breeze from North-East. Blowing in squalls. Overcast and very unpleasant weather, snowing last two hours. Snow very fine and falling very thick. Average speed of wind per hour 32 miles. Barometer going down steadily.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle breeze to moderate gale from North-East. Blowing in squalls. Overcast and snowing, very disagreeable weather. Barometer going down, got as low as 29.00. Average speed of wind per hour 38 miles. Served out small stores and clothing to crew.

4 to 8pm: Gentle to fresh breeze from North-East to East-North-East. Overcast and snowing. Blowing in squalls first two hours. Last two were steady and no snow. Barometer rising. Average speed of wind per hour 26 miles.

8pm to Midnight: Moderate breeze from East. Overcast and unpleasant. Raining last three hours of watch. Average speed of wind per hour 23 miles.

 

 

500dc367cd0db400020010cd: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0184_0.jpg)

500dc367cd0db400020010ce: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0184_1.jpg)

 

25 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Moderate breeze from East. Overcast and unpleasant. Some blue sky during the watch. Average speed of wind per hour 23 miles.

4 to 8am: Moderate to gentle breeze from East. Overcast and unpleasant weather. Blue sky first hour. Snowing remainder of watch. Average speed of wind per hour 22 miles.

8am to Meridian: Light to moderate breeze from East. Overcast and snowing last hour. Average speed of wind per hour 17.7 miles. Rain and snowfall last 24 hours 1/2 inch.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle to moderate breeze from East. Overcast and unpleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 20.2 miles.

4 to 8pm: Moderate breeze to light airs from East and South-East. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 16.9 miles.

8pm to Midnight: Light airs to light breeze from South-East. Overcast and snowing with little blue sky during watch. Average speed of wind per hour 8.7 miles.

 

 

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26 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Calm to light airs and breeze from South-East. Clear and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 6.2 miles.

4 to 8am: Light airs to gentle breeze from East-South-East to East-North-East. Overcast and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 10.5 miles.

8am to Meridian: Gentle to stiff breeze from East-North-East. Overcast and very disagreeable weather, foggy and raining. Average speed of wind per hour 24.5 miles.

Meridian to 4pm: Moderate to fresh breeze from East-North-East. Overcast and snowing. Foggy first two hours. Disagreeable weather. Average speed of wind per hour 31.5 miles. 1/2 inch rain and snowfall in past 24 hours.

4 to 8pm: Fresh to moderate breeze from East-North-East to East. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 27 miles.

8pm to Midnight: Light to gentle breeze from East to South-South-East. Overcast and snowing first hour. Clear and pleasant remainder of watch. Display of aurora. Average speed of wind per hour 14.2 miles.

 

 

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27 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Gentle to light airs from South-East. Pleasant weather. Overcast last hour of watch. Average speed of wind per hour 18.5 miles.

4 to 8am: Light airs to gentle breeze from South-East to East. Partially overcast and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 18.5 miles.

8am to Meridian: Light to gentle breeze from East-South-East to East. Overcast and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 31.7 miles. 1/2 inch of snowfall during last 24 hours.

Meridian to 4pm: Light to moderate breeze from East to East-South-East. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 20.7 miles.

4 to 8pm: Light to gentle breeze from East-South-East. Overcast and snowing. Average speed of wind per hour 19.7 miles.

8pm to Midnight: Light to stiff breeze from East-South-East. Overcast and snowing. Very disagreeable weather. Average speed of wind per hour 22.7 miles.

 

 

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500dc367cd0db400020010d4: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0187_1.jpg)

 

28 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Stiff to gentle breeze from East-South-East to South. Overcast and snowing. Blue sky and clear weather last hour. Average speed of wind per hour 22 miles.

4 to 8am: Gentle to moderate breeze from South-South-West to South. Partially overcast and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 22.2 miles.

8am to Meridian: Light airs to gentle breeze from West-South-West to South-South-West. Partially overcast and pleasant. Average speed of wind per hour 15.2 miles. 1 inch fall of snow in last 24 hours.

Meridian to 4pm: Gentle breeze to light airs from South-West to West-North-West. Pleasant weather. Average speed of wind per hour 16 miles.

4 to 8pm: Gentle breeze to light airs from West-North-West to West-South-West. Pleasant weather. Average speed of wind per hour 13.7 miles.

4.00pm: Saw a light on the beach, sent a boat ashore found Ensign H.J. Hunt and party on shore. Ensign Hunt reported that he had not reached party on the Siberian coast left by ship, owing to his provisions giving out. Party was very much reduced, had to kill one of the dogs for food for dogs and party. Found the snow on mountains impassible.

8pm to Midnight: Light airs from West-South-West first hour. Light breeze to light air from northward and westward remainder of watch. Clear first three hours, overcast last hour. Average speed of wind per hour 7 miles.

 

 

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29 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Commences and until 4am: Light to gentle breeze from North to North-North-West. Overcast and unpleasant. Average speed of wind 10 miles per hour.

4 to 8am: Overcast and squally latter part of watch. Light to stiff breeze from North-North-West to North by West. Disagreeable weather. Average speed of wind per hour 17.5 miles.

No further entries for the day

 

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500dc367cd0db400020010d8: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0189_1.jpg)

 

30 November 1881

Position: St Lawrence Bay, Siberia

Lat 65.67, Long -171.08

at Zaliv Lavrentiya

Final entry at noon

8.45am: The alarm of fire was given with position of fire from forward. Attached hose at once and connected steam and main force pumps. Fire located in lower fore hold on port side. Battened down hatches, two streams of water playing in fore hold. Connected up main boilers and started fires under main boilers. Smoke not allowing donkey boiler to be fired. Broke connection with main steam pipe from donkey boiler, and attached suction hose leading steam in hold.

11.30am: Winded ship by hawsers from after warping chocks. Broke out kerosene oil from sail-room and placed on poop.

5.30pm: Indications of fire breaking out and smoke driving firemen out of fire-room, buoyed and slipped chain and made all plain sail heading the ship towards beach.

7.30pm: Ship touched, let go stream anchor and opened outboard delivery. Lowered all boats.

10.30pm: Succeeded by means of skin boat in attaching a line on shore.

11.30pm: Ordered to abandon ship, fire having broken out forward and extending rapidly aft.

2.20am 1 December: Landed with all hands and hauled up boats. Weather cold, wind fresh from West-North-West, decreasing to light airs in latter part of the day. Slush ice formed about ship about twenty inches thick so that ship could hardly force her way through.

 

Editor's notes: The Rodgers, now fully ablaze, drifted out into the bay. The ship kept burning and she sank on 2 December.

 

(click to enlarge)

When the party at Serdze-Kamen was informed by natives of the ship's fate, Putnam decided to lead a relief expedition with dog sleds to St. Lawrence Bay to provide supplies to the stranded crew. On 11. January 1882 at St. Lawrence Bay he lost the way in bad weather and ended up on an ice floe, drifting out to the sea. Several rescue attempts have failed. Despite a month-long search his body was never found.

 

In March 1882 a search party lead by Lt. Berry received word that survivors of the Jeannette expedition have reached the Lena Delta in previous September. The party then travelled to the Lena and joined them. On their journey back home across Russia, Berry and the chief engineer of the USS Jeannette, George W. Melville, were received in audience by Czar Alexander III. at Peterhof, the imperial summer residence near St. Petersburg.

 

The Revenue Cutter Corwin searched for the lost ships in the same area as the Rodgers, but the ships never met before the Rodgers sank. In May 1882 the Corwin picked up the crew of the Rodgers at St. Lawrence Bay and brought them back to San Francisco.

 

 

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500dc367cd0db400020010da: (http://oldweather.s3.amazonaws.com/ow3/USS Rodgers/Rodgers_1881/b001of010_0190_1.jpg)

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ADDENDUM OF CONTEMPORARY BACKGROUND INFORMATION

 

Compiled by Nico Waldt

 

 

11 June 1881

 

"All of the food on board is of superior quality, except perhaps the canned meats, which had to be purchased very hurriedly to replace the provisions of that class prepared at the Brevoort House in New York, and supposed to be of the very best put up, but which spoiled in transit from that city to San Francisco on the overland freight trains. It was a great disappointment to lose these goods, for their excellence seemed to be admitted wherever known. The Naval Board in Washington, to whom specimens had been sent, approved of the purchase after testing them in their families. The fame of the chef of the Brevoort House is world-wide, and to dine in the arctic upon such soups and meats would simply be taking all the romance of arctic life out of the trip. There you expect walrus meat and blubber, and to get turtle soup and tete de veau en tortue instead, is altogether wrong, for it admits of no excuse for dirty hands and blue shirts. It is fortunate, though, that the condition of these meats was developed before they reached the hold of the vessel, so that they could be replaced with others, though not of so good quality as these were supposed to be. It has been already discovered that some of the canned meats bought in California are somewhat tainted, but the probability is that most of them will be found in good condition when required for use." https://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/12/mode/1up/

 

 

22 June 1881

 

"We have been somewhat disappointed in the sailing qualities of the vessel, or rather in the speed she has been able to develop. But she is deeply laden, carrying about one hundred tons more than was anticipated, and is heavily sparred. This causes her to roll considerably, and assists in deadening her headway. Dragging her screw propeller through the water also has a tendency to check her speed, and the sheathing to protect her from the ice has a similar effect. Upon the whole, however, her officers are thoroughly satisfied with her, and consider her one of the finest vessels, if not indeed the best, that ever entered the Arctic. She showed more speed under steam than was expected, having reached five and a half knots, without any assistance from the sails, on Wednesday the 22d. This was a knot better than had been anticipated; and the chief engineer has since said that he hopes to improve upon that record before reaching Petropaulovski." https://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/4/mode/1up/

 

 

23 July 1881

 

"We found no reindeer meat at Petropaulovski, but have taken on board six cattle, which, with a deck-load of lumber and cord- wood and our forty-seven dogs, makes it quite lively for one who has to go from one end of the vessel to the other. This is the second night since the embarkation of our dogs, and the whole interval has been filled with one prolonged howl that makes the nights especially something to be remembered to the end of one's existence. We expect to leave for St. Michael's in Alaska to-morrow morning, there to take on board two hundred tons of coal, which has already been shipped for our use by the Alaska Commercial Company's steamer St. Paul; but where it is to be put is a question that would puzzle the most experienced stevedore that ever stowed a cargo. About one hundred tons can be used to replenish the coal-bunkers in the hold, and the remainder must go on deck — but where? The cows are forward of the foremast, and the lumber and the dogs fill the intervening space from the foremast to the quarter-deck, while the rigging is all hung with salmon, which is drying for dog-food. Fortunately we need not anticipate much heavy weather inside of Behring Sea or the Arctic Ocean; and it will be only a short time comparatively before we will be compelled to seek winter quarters either upon Wrangel Land or the adjacent Siberian coast. Some such weather as we had upon our trip from San Francisco would make sad havoc with our deck-load." https://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/18/mode/1up/

 

 

15 August 1881

 

"Though but about forty-five miles from Plover Bay we did not reach it until the afternoon of the 16th, owing to fogs and head- winds. We found the chart very inaccurate, and the soundings particularly erroneous, probably indicating a very uneven bottom. We had hopes to find here a native Tchouktchi known as " John Cornelius" who was represented as a thorough pilot for Behring Strait, a good dog-driver and interpreter, who speaks English remarkably well. He had already gone to the Arctic Ocean with Captain Owen." https://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/64/mode/1up/

 

 

3 September 1881

 

"During the day they saw what looked like a cairn upon the beach, and Hunt landed to examine it. His praiseworthy curiosity came near bringing him into trouble, however, for he found himself, before he was aware of it, within about six feet of a huge polar bear taking a postprandial siesta. As the ponderous brute raised his head and turned toward the intruder they gazed at each other in a dazed sort of a way for a few minutes, when our active young ensign cut short the interview by facing about and starting for the boat at a speed he never before knew himself to possess, shouting loudly for his rifle. In the meantime the bear arose in a dignified and leisurely manner, and slowly walked toward the sea, when Hunt sent a bullet through him that caused him to turn again for the beach, another shot brought him to the ground, and a third so disabled him that Johansen ran up and gave him the coup de grace with the muzzle of his rifle at the animal' s port ear. Hunt then had time to look over the race-course where he had made such good time in going for his rifle, and says that his steps were about seven feet long at the least, and the gravel was scattered in every direction. The monster was skinned, and the tenderloin, liver, heart, and glands removed to the boat to reinforce their larder. The liver they pronounced exceedingly palatable; it formed their chief diet for about ten days, and, notwithstanding that it has invariably been spoken of as poisonous, none of the party have as yet experienced any but pleasurable emotions from partaking of it." https://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/90/mode/1up

 

 

4 September 1881

 

"Acting Lieutenant H. S. Waring was accompanied on his expedition by Doctor J. D. Castillo, and his crew consisted of Fr. Bruch, coxswain; Frank Berk, Wm. Grace, Julius Huebner, and Owen McCarthy. Of these, Huebner had considerable experience in boating in the ice of the Arctic seas upon several whaling voyages, and his knowledge thus acquired proved useful to the commander of the expedition. Amid the cheers of those remaining, Waring started off toward the east full of hope, and with a breeze that sent him swiftly along under reefed mainsail. That night he reached Cape Hawaii, when the wind died out, and he encamped on the shore; where all enjoyed a good night's rest, and the novelty of the experience of tenting on Wrangel Land with the thermometer at 25‘ Fahr. After rounding the cape on the following morning he pulled to a small island near the mouth of a creek, where were the skeletons of a whale and a walrus. His attention was attracted by some pieces of wood sticking up in the sand, evidently by intention, and he then noticed footprints leading up to the cliff near by. Following them he came upon a flagstaff, from which dropped what appeared to be a United States flag, and attached to the staff was a bottle containing a copy of the New York Herald of March 22d, 1881, and documents of which the following are copies :

 

Copy.

 

U. S. Revenue Marine,

 

U. S. Steamer Corwin,

Wrangel Land, August 12th, 1881.

 

The United States steamer Corwin, Captain C. L. Cooper commanding, visited this land in search of tidings from the United States Exploring steamer Jeannette. A cask of provisions will be found on the second cliff to the northward. All well on board.

 

(No signature).

 

U. S. Revenue Marine,

Revenue Cutter Corwin,

 

August 12th, 1881.

 

Landed here this date having previously landed at Herald Island. A " cairn," with information inclosed, may be found on the northeast summit of the island. The finder is requested to send the contents of this bottle to the New York Herald. J. C.

 

He left copies there in place of the originals, which were brought away and have been transmitted to the Secretary of the Navy with Captain Berry's report." https://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/86/mode/1up

 

 

5 September 1881

 

"The interior was found to be entirely devoid of animal life, and of other plants than those growing near the coast. Two ridges of mountains followed the trend of the northern and southern shores, between which a rolling country existed traversed by small streams evidently fed by the melting snow from the mountains. Minerals and specimens of the flora were gathered, and to this interesting collection was added a fine mammoth tusk, found the first day's march from the ship. A number of other mammoth tusks were found in various stages of preservation by various members of the expedition and those remaining at the harbor."

https://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/85/mode/1up

 

 

 

PETS ON BOARD

 

"A pair of black pigs enjoy the freedom of the deck below the top-gallant forecastle, and are named respectively Michael Angelo and Raphael. Three kittens and a puppy, of parentage so involved as to puzzle a committee from any kennel club in the country, are the pets of the sailors, and sustain names that would make them proud if they only understood their significance. The kittens are Phryne, Aphrodite and Proserpine; while the dog responds to the name of Billee Stuart. It is becoming a sad reflection that either Michael Angelo or Raphael will have to die to provide us with a fitting thanksgiving dinner. The ship is so well provisioned that one might imagine there would be no necessity for such a sacrifice, but nothing can withstand the keen edge of a salt air appetite. Where are now those dainty palates that refused the delicacies of the San Francisco restaurants, the Occidental Hotel, the California House, Marchand's, and the " Poodle Dog"? Where are those appetites that had to be stimulated with a cock-tail before breakfast and absinthe before dinner? I wouldn' t even trust Billee Stuart to run at large were other food lacking. Unless we should have the misfortune to lose our vessel it will be a long time before we are reduced to any strait for food." https://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/11/mode/1up/search/

 

And:

 

"Both the dogs on board the Rodgers perished with the vessel, one of them a queer little animal nick-named " One-eyed Riley," who had been a great pet with the sailors."

https://archive.org/stream/icepacktundraac00gild#page/126/mode/1up/

 

 

 

 

RODGERS IN THE MEDIA

 

 

New York Herald, 1 June 1881

THE VOYAGE OF THE RODGERS.

 

San Francisco, June 7.—Lieut. Berry and the officers of the steamer Rodgers were received by the Academy of Science last evening. There was a very large attendance. A paper giving the details of the Rodgers's various voyages and discoveries in the vicinity of Wrangel Land, and dwelling upon the evidence regarding the reported landing there of Capt. Dollman in 1866, was read by Mr. C. W. Brooks. Other gentlemen presented their views on the subject, and Mr. James Gamble, of the Western Union Telegraph Company, explained a proposition to use the telegraph in maintaining communication between the ship and the sledging parties. The day for the Rodgers to sail has not been fixed, but it will be some time this week. http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?res=F60B12F738581B7A93CAA9178DD85F458884F9

 

 

New York Herald, 15 November 1881

THE RODGERS'S ARCTIC VOYAGE.

 

San Francisco, Nov. 14.—The Stock Report - to-day publishes extracts from a letter from an officer on the Arctic relief steamer Rodgers, dated Oct. 16, at St. Lawrence Bay, where the Rodgers had arrived the day before. A sledge party was lauded on the Siberian coast, about 50 miles from East Cape, with a year's provisions. The party received orders to sledge the coast to the north and west as soon as the ground is covered with snow. The Rodgers reached latitude 73‘ 44' north. No land was visible to the northward, but southward a flight of ducks showed there must be laud in that direction. http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?res=F70F14FC3A581B7A93C7A8178AD95F458884F9

 

 

New York Herald, 11 January 1882

NEWS FROM THE RODGERS.

 

Chicago, Jan. 10.—Charles F. Putnam, a graduate of the Annapolis Naval Academy in 1873, who joined the United States steamer Rodgers in search of the Jeannette, writes an interesting letter to his mother, in this city. The first section of the letter is dated United States steamer Rodgers. Arctic Ocean, Aug. 20, 1881. In it he speaks of being at St. Michael's, in the Pacific Ocean, from Aug. 3 to the 11th, and hearing nothing of the Jeannette or her party, and on the 11th of sailing for Plover Bay, on the Siberian coast. This contradicts the dispatch that the Chasseur met the Rodgers on the 9th of August and that the Rodgers was steering for Herald Island. In point of fact the Chasseur could not at that time have been in the Arctic, and the Rodgers, which certainly had not, was steering, not for Herald Island, but for a small Island in Plover Bay. The Rodgers reached Plover Bay on the 16th of August, and, Master Putnam says, did not find the Russian man-of-war Strelock, and therein he again contradicts M. Soulowski. That vessel, he says, had left on the 13th, leaving word that it would meet the Rodgers at St. Lawrence Bay. They did meet the Strelock on the 18th, and on the 19th passed through Behrings Straits in company with her into the Arctic Ocean. Master Putnam says: "We have heard of several sledge parties, both on the northern coast of Siberia and on the coast near Point Barrow, and some think it may turn out that some of the Jeannette's party have left the ship and started back by sledge. We shall investigate the stories, first going to Cape Serdze Kamer on the north coast of Siberia and thence to the eastward, where we will find the whalers and learn from them what they have heard." He speaks of the fine weather, the thermometer being 40‘ all day, with no ice anywhere. The Rodgers was prepared to remain two years, he says, to find the Jeannette. http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?res=F50D11F63A581B7A93C3A8178AD85F468884F9

 

 

New York Herald, 19 April 1882

THE STEAMER RODGERS BURNED.

 

lieut. berry and his crew left without a vessel in the arctic regions.

From the Herald.

Irkutsk, Siberia, April 18.—I have this morning recived startling news from Mr. Jackson, the special Commissioner, who was sent in search of the Jeanette survivors. He apparently forwarded the dispatch by courier. It ran as follows:

From the Banks of the Aldan River,

April 6, 1882.

 

"I have just met a courier bearing dispatches from W. H. Gilder, the Herald correspondent with the Rodgers, whom the courier had accompanied from Kolymsk, on the Kolima River, to Verkboyansk, 400 miles north of Iakutsk. Gilder had made a journey of 2.000 versts among tho Chuckches. He was sent forward with the news that the Rodgers had been burned and sunk; that Lieut. Berry, with the officers and crew, 36 in number, are at Tiapka, near Cape Serdze; that a vessel should be sent for them as early as possible." http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?res=F30F10FA3A5A11738DDDA00994DC405B8284F0D3

 

 

New York Herald, 7 May 1882

THE RODGER'S CREW SAFE.

 

the reported loss of life a blunder of the telegraph.

Washington, May 6.—The following is a copy of the original dispatch sent by ChargŽ d'Affaires Hoffman, at St. Petersburg, dated May 4, to the Secretary of State, referring to the loss of the Rodgers:

 

St. Petersburg, May 4.

Frelinghuysen:

Have just received following dispatch from Lieut. Berry; I give it as received:

"Straedne Holymsk, Siberia, March 6.

United States steamer Rodgers lost by fire St. Lawrence Bay November; 30 lives lost."

HOFFMAN.

The following correction was received this morning:

St. Petersburg, May 5

Frelinghuysen, Washington:

Requested telegraph department to repeat telegram of yesterday. It now reads: Nov. 30. No lives lost.

HOFFMAN.

 

http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?res=F70B13FF3E5B11728DDDAE0894DD405B8284F0D3

 

 

New York Herald, 22 June 1882

THE LOSS OF THE RODGERS

A THRILLING STORY OF DISASTER FROM THE ARCTIC SEA.

FUTILE EFFORTS TO SUBDUE THE FLAMES — HOW THE MEN WERE SAVED—HOSPITALITY OF THE NATIVES.

 

Washington, June 21.—The Acting Secretary of the Navy has received a dispatch from Lieut. R. M. Berry, commanding the Rodgers, which was destroyed by fire in St. Lawrence Bay, dated at Camp Hunt, Eteelan Island, North-east Siberia, Jan. 7,1882, as follows:

 

l have the honor to report that at 8:45 A. M., Nov. 30, 1881, a fire was discovered in the fore hold of the Rodgers, underneath the donkey boiler room. The crew went quietly and quickly to their stations; the hatches were closed, and two streams were soon playing, one from the steam-pump worked by the donkey boiler and the other from the deck force-pump, but owing to the fullness of the hold and large quantity of smoke it was impossible to reach the fire. In a few minutes after the fore hatch was partially opened to admit the two streams of water. So much smoke was escaping that the men at the nozzles had continually to be relieved, and the fireman at the donkey boiler could not remain at his post. The door to the donkey boiler room was closed and the deck opened above, by which means the fires were kept up. The connection to the main boilers, which had been broken to prevent the pipes freezing, were made, the boilers pumped up and fires started. The Babcock fire extinguisher was discharged through an auger-hole over the fire; the Mead light oil was removed from the sail-room, and the powder from the magazine placed over the taffrail, to be thrown overboard or put in the boats, as necessary. Measures were taken to prevent the fire from spreading aft, but to no avail, and it soon became evident that to save the ship was impossible, and all efforts were directed to saving the people. This was difficult, as the young ice was of such consistency as to make it impossible to force a boat through it even sufficiently far to clear the burning ship. An attempt was made to beach the vessel, but the wind fell light and we moved hardly at all. The ship would not mind her helm and was carried by the ice and tide between Lutke Island and the low spit, taking the ground about 500 feet from the latter. Ineffectual attempts were made to flood the ship and to run a line ashore with a boat, but she could not be forced her own length from the ship. The next attempt was made with a skin boat, which succeeded in conveying a deep sea line on shore, by which a larger line was hauled on shore and made fast to a piece of driftwood. The boats were warped ashore, but the process was attended with so much difficulty that we were compelled to desert the two rear boats. Before the last two boats left the ship at 11:45 P.M., the fire had broken through the fore hatch, and before the boats reached the shore at 2 A.M. Dec. l, the fire had extended the entire length of the ship. Soon after the line bent to the stream anchor was burned in two, and the ship, much to my surprise and chagrin, was swept out of the harbor by the ice, destroying all hope of saving anything more from the wreck. She was last seen in the morning of Dec. 2 still burning and well up in the harbor. The crew lost nearly all of their clothing, and the officers lost a large portion of theirs. The official records were saved.

 

After getting on shore the men were too much fatigued to attempt constructing a shelter, but slept out in the open air, wearing blankets. Open water made its appearance along the beach at daylight, and the boats were launched and headed for the native village of Nuniagmo, but were driven back by the ice, and they were compelled to remain another night in a violent snow-storm. The following morning two natives, who happened to be on the ship at the time of the fire, returned with other natives and all the sleds of the village and invited us to take up our quarters at their houses, which invitation was accepted, leaving a party in charge of our boats and stores, and these were subsequently taken to the village. The party was subsequently divided up among the four villages in the vicinity of St. Lawrence Bay. The villagers were kind and their houses comparatively comfortable. The catch of walrus is good, and we are in no danger from hunger or disease. We also hope by trading to have all the party properly clad by the last of the month.

 

I have been unable to determine the origin of the fire, but think that it was most probably caused by the heat of the donkey boiler, charring and firing the deck underneath, as it was there that the fire broke out. The following articles were stored in that part of the hold, viz.: Lime juice, pemmican, beef, pork, rice, beans, sugar, molasses, pickles, vinegar, running gear, and a large hemp hawser, which was evidently burning when the fire was first discovered, as there was a strong odor of smoke from tarred hemp. None of these articles are, I believe, subject to spontaneous combustion. The steam-pipes for heating the ship all ran between decks with the exception of the escape-pipe, which ran down in the hold, but as the steam had made the round of the ship before entering that, it could not have caused the fire. Separated from the fire-hold by a bulkhead was the main hold, containing only screened anthracite coal. The hold had not been entered by any one for more than two weeks.

 

The officers and men could not have deported themselves better, and quiet and order prevailed throughout. I propose engaging one of the whaling fleet, as soon as they shall arrive next Summer, to take the party to St. Michael's, and then engage passage on the Alaska Commercial Company's steamer to San Francisco. The intention of searching the coast for information concerning the Jeannette and missing whalers will not be abandoned, and I have already learned from the natives that there is an ample supply of food along the entire coast; so, should any of the missing parties reach the coast, they will be in no danger of want of food. Owing to the continuous gales and rough water, it was impossible to execute my intention of building a house on shore and landing a large portion of stores. One month's provisions, a portion of the trade articles, nearly all the guns, all the ammunition, except the shot, of which we saved two bags, and a small amount of clothing, were saved; nor could we have taken much more in boats had we been able to reach them.

 

I regret that I could not send this report sooner, but all efforts to get a guide to Nishue Kolymsk, or even a messenger to communicate with this station without using my own dogs, which at that time I could not spare, were unavailing. I send this report by Mr. W. H. Gilder, pay clerk, who will report in person to the department with all dispatch and mail at the nearest Post Office a copy of this report.

 

R. M. BERRY,

Lieutenant United States Navy, Commanding Jeannette Relief Expedition.

 

 

In another dispatch bearing the same date Lieut. Berry informs the department of gallant conduct on the part of W. F. Morgan, Master-at-Arms, during the fire, by his daring efforts for its suppression. He received injuries which made necessary his being placed under medical aid, and of which he did not recover for two weeks. He rendered himself conspicuous, where, all did their duty remarkably well.

 

San Francisco, June 21.—The following dispatch has been received from Port Townsend, Washington Territory: "The steamer Idaho has arrived from Sitka. She brings full reports of the burning of the United States exploring steamer Rodgers in St. Lawrence Bay and the rescue of her crew. The revenue steamer Thomas Corwin arrived at Sitka on June 3 with the officers and crew of the Rodgers. The officers landed at Sitka are: Master D. S. Warring, executive officer; Ensign G. M. Story, Passed Assistant Surgeon M. D. Jones, Passed Assistant Engineer A. V. Zane, and Assistant Surgeon J. D. Costello, and 26 men, all in good health, the latter comprising the same crew that sailed from San Francisco, all told. Lieut. A. M. Berry, commander of the Rodgers, accompanied by Ensign H. J. Hunt. left St. Lawrence Bay Dec. 23 to sleigh the Siberian coast in search of the Jeannette. On May 13, 1882, Master Warring received a letter, through the natives, from Lieut. Berry, dated at Keoyma River, April 4, stating that he had heard of the loss of the Jeannette and the landing of her boats; that he should continue his search for the survivors, and should not return by way of the East. He directed Mr. Waring to take his party and make the best of his way to San Francisco and communicate with the Navy Department. The point where the letter was dated was about halfway between the St. Lawrence and the Lena Rivers.

 

At the time the Rodgers was burned she was lying off shore about a mile and a half. The fire was reported at about 8:45 A.M. Everything was done to save the ship. The fire was in the lower hold, forward, and it is probable that the cause was spontaneous combustion, and the place where it originated was so situated that it was next to impossible to get a stream of water on it. The officers and crew fought the flames to no purpose. The fire gained so rapidly that it became evident to her commander that all attempts to save the ship would prove fruitless, so about 4 P. M. the ship was headed for the beach in hopes that by scuttling her sufficient provisions might be saved to maintain the party until rescued. Although from six to eight feet of water rushed into her fire-room, owing to coal and timbers choking up the passage, the water did not flow forward to the seat of the fire. The ship at this time lay about 250 yards from shore, surrounded by soft slush 20 inches thick, too soft to land upon, and yet too thick to force boats through under ordinary circumstances. Fortunately, the ship was provided with a skin boat, by means of which the men were enabled to carry a line ashore. At 10 P.M. the flames proceeded so far aft that it was determined to abandon the ship. Up to this moment the whole company was engaged in fighting fire, throwing overboard the combustible part of the cargo, taking out provisions for the boats, &c. But little success was had, however, in securing the provisions. The condition of the ice was such that it took until 2 A.M. of the following day to land what could be saved. The boats were hauled up and the whole party encamped on the beach for two days, before any attempt was made to communicate with the natives, who came down with a few dredges to assist the party to their village which was distant about seven miles. Three barrels of flour and one of beans and sugar; 1 tin of coffee and about 300 pounds of pemmican and 75 of tobacco; 8 Remington rifles, with 5 000 cartridges, and some trade articles, and all five boats, with a complete outfit were loaded. The trip from the boats to the village was very laborious in the exhausted condition of the ship's company, it being over hills, with snow four feet deep. The village consists of 11 huts, and the tribe are the Tehanketchis, which inhabit all that portion or North-eastern Siberia. The officers and crew were distributed among different habitations, where they settled down for a long Winter's siege, adapting themselves to the customs of savage life. It soon became evident that the supply of walrus meat of the natives was insufficient for such a large party, and a redistribution of the men became necessary among the different villages along the coast, which. was done within a range of about 35 miles. On the 4th of February Master C. F. Putnam, commanding the supply depot at Cape Serdge Karmen, arrived at the village with four sledges loaded with pemmican and other provisions for the shipwrecked party, he having heard of the loss of the ship through natives. He started on his return trip to the depot in bad weather, and was overtaken by a terrible gale of wind, with drifting snow, when two days out, and was obliged to turn back, and in his endeavor to reach the village on the southern side of St. Lawrence Bay, about 12 miles from North Head, he became separated from his native escort, and not being able to see 10 feet ahead of him, was carried out to sea on an ice-floe. Later in the day he was seen about seven miles off shore, abreast of the village. A vigorous attempt was made to rescue him by four of the Rodgers's crew and two natives in a canoe, but owing to the intervening i e they were unable to reach him, and were obliged to put back after getting three miles from shore. This was the last ever seen of Putnam. Master Waring, leaving the ship's party in charge of Ensign Story, procured a sledge, guide, and dogs and searched the entire coast to Indian Point, and thence to Plover Bay, and found not a trace of the unfortunate officer. On the way down the coast four dogs were identified as belonging to Putnam's sledge. One of them had a wound through his neck as if made by a pistol bullet, under circumstances which are unaccountable. The conduct of the natives was reported to be excellent and their humble hospitality profuse. Their provisions of walrus and seal were at times very scarce, and they often went without food themselves to afford relief to the whites. The Rodgers party subsisted entirely upon native food, pemmican being the principal thing reserved, it being found necessary to take it to the boats for preservation. Only one notable instance of ill-behavior upon the part of the natives is recorded. During the absence of Mr. Waring on the Putnam search a turbulent chief, with a band of followers from a neighboring village, demanded the white men's provisions. The situation was a critical one, but owing to the skill and decision with which Ensign Story handled the case all danger of a collision was avoided, and the marauding party were sent off hungry. No indications of scurvy made their appearance until late in February, when several officers and men were the subject of light attacks. When at Plover and Marcus Bays Waring left with the natives a letter to be delivered to any whaling vessel which might visit these places informing it of the condition of the shipwrecked crew. Capt. Owens, of the steam whaler North Star, of New Bedford, got one of these letters and forced his ship through the ice opposite St. Lawrence Bay, reaching there on May 8, and jamming his ship on the outer edge of the ice so as not to be carried to the northward by the large floes of ice floating by. On the afternoon of the 14th, when the party had safely boarded the North Star, before leaving, Mr. Waring issued to the natives all the unexpended trade goods, provisions, rifles, ammunition, and boats, as a recompense for their kind treatment. This was eminently satisfactory to these harmless creatures, so that should a party of wrecked mariners ever again be cast away in that vicinity, they can rest assured of a friendly reception.

 

The officers and men all unite in speaking highly of the generous efforts of Capt. Owens in effecting their rescue. Previous to their being transferred to the Corwin he offered to land them at Fort St. Michael's, Alaska, or San Francisco. On the night of the 14th, being clear of ice, at midnight, the Corwin appeared and all hands were transferred to her. http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?res=F40610FC355A11738DDDAB0A94DE405B8284F0D3

 

 

 

Sacramento Daily Union, Volume 15, Number 108, 27 June 1882

THE RODGERS.

RETURN OF HER CREW—THEIR ADVENTURES.

Some Account of Arctic Research—Loss of the Ship by Fire— The Relief.

 

The arrival at San Francisco of the revenue cutter Corwin from the Arctic, with the crew of the ill-fated steamer Rodgers, furnishes additional details of the voyages of both vessels. On the 16th of June, 1881, the Rodgers, Captain Berry, left San Francisco to make a search for the Jeannette. She sailed hence direct for Petropaulovski, on the coast of Kamschatka. The Rodgers men, anticipating a dismal experience of the traditional Siberian weather at Petropaulovski, were agreeably surprised on arriving there to find a beautiful green shore, with plenty of trees and shrubbery, and the weather quite warm and pleasant. They arrived there on the 19th of July, and obtained forty-five sledge dogs and a quantity of reindeer clothing, and then went over to

 

ST. MICHAELS

About 1,400 miles distant, on the American side. On the opposite side of this bay is one of the ports of the Northwestern Trading Company, in charge of Mr. Greenfield, who also showed them great kindness. There an additional supply of reindeer skin clothing was obtained, and also some dressed seal skins, for making sealskin boats. They also procured a native kyak, or boat, capable of carrying three persons. The Rodgers filled up with coal, having sent up in advance about two hundred tons. Leaving St. Michaels, the Rodgers got under way for Plover Bay, on the Siberian side, and about three hundred miles distant, almost due west, for the purpose of picking up a native named John Cornelius, who had been for some time in the United States, and could speak English. They found, on arriving there, however, that he had gone up into the Arctic Ocean on a whaleship. After remaining one night in Plover Bay, the steamer left for St. Lawrence Bay. One of the main objects in going to St. Lawrence Bay was to inquire of the natives whether they had heard anything of the Jeannette; but after the most diligent inquiry they could get no tidings. On the second day after reaching St. Lawrence Bay, the Rodgers sailed for the Arctic in company with the Stre- lock. They left the bay at 12 o'clock at night, and at daylight the following morning got into a fog, in which the Strelock was lost sight of. The Rodgers pushed along the northeast coast of Siberia about seventy-five miles, to a native village, at which Captain Hooper of the Corwin had left his dog some time previonsly.

 

the JEANNETTE.

 

Inquiries were kept up among the natives concerning the Jeannette, but not a word had been heard of her, nor of any vessel having been wrecked, nor of any persons from a wrecked vessel. Finding their further progress in that direction completely cut off by the ice, Captain Berry sailed away for Herald Island. On the passage they sighted Wrangell Island, and ran in toward it until they struck the ice. Captain Berry pushed on for Herald Island to search for some vestige of the Jeannette's visit there. They remained at Herald Island about three or four hours, long enough to make a thorough search, then steamed away for Wrangell Land, the nearest point of which was about forty miles distant, though further south, where the Rodgers struck it, was about 150 miles. About noon the next day, after leaving Herald Island, ice was encountered fifteen miles from Wrangell Land. The vessel was worked through it, and dropped her anchor about a quarter of a mile from shore. The land before them was supposed to be a continent, and with a view to making an extensive exploration of it, and search for traces of the Jeannette's men, two parties were sent out in boats to follow the coast in opposite directions. One of these parties was to go round the south, west and north sides, and the other was to go cast and north as far as possible along the coast. It was a part of Captain Berry's purpose to determine, if possible, whether Wrangell Land was really a continent or only an island. Mr. Waring's boat rounded the southeast point, and, skirting along the east shore, went to the northeast corner of the island, and were stopped by the ice. Here this party were obliged to abandon their boat and return overland to the vessel. Ensign Hunt's boat skirted along the south, west and north sides, and was

 

STOPPED BY ICE About fifteen miles from the place where the other boat was abandoned. Having gone as far as they could, this party worked their boat back to the ship. They were allowed fifteen days to make the exploration from the time they left the vessel. When they were stopped by the ice on the north side of the island, ten days had already transpired, and they had only five in which to get back to the Rodgers. All hands being once more aboard, the vessel on the following day resumed her course, having proved conclusively that Wrangell Land was an island. A thorough search of the coast had been made for cairns, and the only one found was that which Captain Hooper had left twelve days before the Rodgers arrived. It contained no provisions— nothing but papers. The Rodgers then struck a course north and east for higher latitudes, but was finally stopped by the ice, probably about 150 miles away from Wrangell Island, and, returning again, sighted Herald Island. Another party was landed to search for a cairn left by Captain Hooper, and which was mentioned in the papers found in the cairn on Wrangell Island, it was discovered, but its records revealed nothing of importance. Leaving Herald Island, the Rodgers struck on her former course for Wrangell Island, and on approaching found the ice entirely open and off shore, so that the vessel could run closer to the land. She skirted along the shore and

 

PICKED UP THE BOAT Which had been abandoned by Mr. Waring's party two weeks before. The vessel then continued north until she reached a position about 100 miles north of Wrangell Island, when she was again stopped by ice, and as it was late in the season it was deemed inadvisable to lose time beating about there. Accordingly the vessel was headed for the Siberian coast, which she struck a little west of North Cape. She then skirted along the coast toward Behring Strait looking for a winter harbor, but found none. About twenty miles west of Cape Serdze Captain Berry found the island that Captain Hooper had discovered a short time before. It lay about one mile off the main land. There the men built a wooden house and left six men in charge of Master Putnam with one year's provisions. They left also dogs and sledges. Mr. Putnam was to establish posts for more extended sledge journeys, take meteorological observations, and find out what he could from the natives about the Jeannette, etc. It was on the 1st of October that the vessel reached the island, and on the 6th the party was landed. After all these preparations were completed the Rodgers proceeded to St. Lawrence Bay, and went into winter quarters in that part of the bay known as Lutke harbor.

 

THE FIRE.

About 8:45 o'clock on the morning of the 30th of November, the men in the forecastle discovered indications of fire ; smoke was issuing from the forehold. The master-at-arms informed the Captain of the fact, and within two minutes a large stream was playing into the hold from the deck pumps. The fire had evidently been smoldering for some time, as a volume of smoke and flame burst all at once with great fury from the forehold. At 11 o'clock a.m. orders were given to get up steam in the main boilers, and by 12:30 there was steam sufficient to run both pumps. In a short time there was about three feet of water in the main coal bunkers. The men worked with untiring energy until about 8 P. M., when it became evident that the doom of the vessel was sealed, and that the safety of the crew was now of the utmost importance. The ship was surrounded with slush ice, through which a boat could not force a passage. The hatches were all closed up, the cables slipped, the fore and main topsails set, and there being a fair wind, the vessel was soon carried into shallow water, where she was scuttled. A boat was lowered and provisioned with such stores as could be got at, amounting to about ten days' rations. With the aid of the little kyak, a line was taken to the shore, and by means of this line the crew were all safely landed in the other boats, but by a very fatiguing and painful process, the distance they had to be hauled being about sixty rods. The temperature of the air was about 25 degrees

 

BELOW FREEZING POINT,

And for shelter for the night the boats, after being hauled up on the shore, were turned over on their bilge, and the men crawled under them. Of course, there was but little sleep, and the greater part of the night was spent in watching the receding existence of their late castle on the waters. Before daylight wind and ebbing sea carried the burning wreck some distance out, but the incoming tide brought it back again, sweeping it about six miles up the bay, where it sunk in five fathoms of water. On the following morning, an attempt to reach North Head with the boats was defeated by the wind and ice, and another night was spent on shore. Before daybreak, about a dozen natives with sleighs appeared, and Captain Berry made arrangements with them for a distribution of the crew among their domiciles according to their respective capabilities for subsisting the men during the winter. They represented that they had on hand a stock of walrus meat sufficient for the emergency. Captain Berry went to Cape Serdze. On the first of January, the natives' food supply having given out, the men were compelled to leave the village at North Head, and they were redistributed among the villages of Ac-con-nan, South Head, New-tap-pinman and Singee, respectively twenty five, twenty, eighteen and seven miles distant from North Head. Even in these

 

PROVISIONS

soon became scarce. Their daily menu was putrid walrus meat, or the flesh of dogs that had died from disease and starvation. Hydrophobia was a trouble among the dogs, and Mr. Stoney found that one of the dogs he had feasted upon had died of this disease. The winter was extremely severe. The average depth of snow was four feet, and the mean temperature 75 degrees Fahrenheit below freezing point. As a rule the natives were very hospitable. The best of the meat was given to the whites, while they ate the worst themselves. The best, however, was infernal. They also supplied the white men with skin clothes. On the 28th of April the whaling steamer Belvidere appeared off St. Lawrence bay, but was unable to get within fifteen miles of shore on account of the ice. After waiting for two days for an opportunity to get in, a southwest gale sprung up and carried the steamer out of sight. The gale lasted eight days, and the Belvidere did not return.

 

THE RESCUE

On the 9th of May the steam-whaler North Star, Captain Owen, got within three miles of North Head, having hastened up with the humane object of aiding the crew of the Rodgers, the fate of which he had learned at Plover Bay, from a letter left there by Mr. Waring in January. Captain Owen immediately sent a little boat on shore, invited the Captain on board, and placed his vessel at the disposal of Mr. Waring, the Executive Officer of the Rodgers. Bunks were fitted up between decks, and everything necessary for the comfort of the men was done. While the crew of the Rodgers was being taken on board a large field of ice swung around and, catching the vessel in a nip with the shore-ice, held her fast there until the 14th ultimo, when a southerly breeze sprung up, setting the ice in motion again, and liberating the captive whaler. At 8 P. m. the fog lifted, and the North Star steamed out of the bay, taking a southwesterly course. At 12:30 a.m., on the 15th, the Corwin was sighted, and shortly afterward the shipwrecked men, with hearts full of gratitude for the kindness they had experienced, took leave of Captain Owen and his officers, and were transferred to the latter vessel.

 

the fate of master PUTNAM.

Master Putnam, of the Rodgers, who was left in charge of the party at Cape Serdze, started about December 10th on a sledge journey down toward the vessel. Thirty miles from St. Lawrence Bay he learned from the natives of the loss of the ship, and immediately started back for Cape Serdze, where, having procured fresh dogs and sleighs sufficient for carrying a thousand pounds of provisions, he again set out and arrived at North Head in company with four natives and dog teams, on the 4th of January. Messrs. Putnam and Gilder had already made a sledge journey of several hundred miles up the coast, in hopes of finding some trace of the Jeannette, but, failing, had returned to await Captain Berry's orders. On his way to St. Lawrencc Bay the second time, Mr. Putnam met Captain Berry, who told him to take Mr. Hunt and Mr. Zane with him on his return to Cape Serdze. On the 10th of January Mr. Putnam, Mr. Zane, Mr. Hunt, Dr. Castillo and three natives started, with four sledges drawn by dogs, for Cape Serdze. That night a strong northwest gale came up and compelled them to go into camp. The men were obliged, however, to be on their feet all night to keep from

 

FREEZING TO DEATH.

In the morning, several of the party were found to be severely frost-bitten, and, as the unabated fury of the storm rendered their further progress against it impossible, they decided to return to South Head. While journeying from the head of St. Lawrencc Bay to its mouth on the south side, Mr. Putnam, along with his sleigh, was considerably in advance of the rest of the party. On reaching the mouth, instead of turning down the coast, the dogs carried him straight forward, out on the ice. Before he could get back, the ice broke away from the shore, under the force of the wind, and the unfortunate man was carried out to sea. The rest of the party passed on to the houses, about a mile further on, and finding that Mr. Putnam had not arrived there, became alarmed for his safety, and immediately hastened back to find him. They surmised his mistake, but on arriving at the head found that the ice had broken and gone. The day following was calm. A report reached them that a man had been seen on the floes drifting out to sea. Mr. Waring went down the coast as far as Plover Bay, still hoping to find him. He offered large rewards to the natives

 

FOR HIS RESCUE.

Five or six days after his disappearance, four of his dogs came ashore, one having what appeared to be a pistol shot wound in the neck. There were nine dogs in his team —five were never heard of afterward. On the 13th, Mr. Hunt and Mr. Zane again started for Cape Serdze, and arrived there in safety. The Captain and Mr. Hunt then started on a journey up the coast, Captain Berry leaving orders that if they were not back by the 10th of May, for the party to join the command at North Head. Mr. Zane and party arrived at North Head May 9th. They had received a letter from the Captain on the 2d, informing them of the loss of the Jeannette. The letter was carried by a native whom the Captain had taken with him. The letter also directed the crew of the Rodgers to take the first opportunity for escaping from that inhospitable climate that offered itself, as it was his intention to make a search for the Jeannette. The only loss from the Rodgers party from the time the vessel sailed out of this port, with the sad exception of that of Mr. Putnam, occurred on the first night after the vessel had passed out of the Golden Gate, Gustave Peters, a native of Germany, while in the act of furling the jib was struck by a heavy head sea which swept him away.http://cdnc.ucr.edu/cgi-bin/cdnc?a=d&d=SDU18820627.2.2&srpos=9&e=--1870----188-en-Logical-20-SDU-1-byDA--txIN-ARTICLE----#

 

 

 

New York Herald, 7 August 1882

THE RODGERS COURT OF INQUIRY.

 

So far as any intimation of carelessness was concerned, the court of inquiry appointed to investigate the circumstances leading to the loss of the United States steamer Rodgers must be admitted to have exonerated her officers and men. The fire, it will be remembered, broke out in her forehold Nov. 30, 1881, while she lay anchored in St. Lawrence Bay, Siberia, her Winter quarters. Nobody has ever doubted that every exertion was made to save the ship, and that she was only abandoned when her destruction was inevitable. The only question has been as to whether the fire was really preventable. For it must be acknowledged that it is most mortifying to reflect that the upshot of a so-called rescue expedition was its own destruction. In his report on this subject to the Secretary of the Navy, dated Jan. 7, 1882, Lieut. R M. Berry threw no light on the origin of the fire. "It was discovered underneath the donkey boiler room," he wrote, adding that " it was most probably caused by the heat of the donkey boiler, charring and firing the deck underneath." Giving a list of the articles stored in the forehold, he expressed the opinion that none of them was subject to spontaneous combustion under ordinary circumstances. He also showed that the fire could not have been produced from the steam pipes by which the ship was heated. Finally, there could have been no careless dropping of sparks or matches, for "the hold had not been entered by any one for more than two weeks." What relation this latter statement bears to the advisability of frequent and careful inspection of the holds of an arctic ship to guard against spontaneous combustion is not stated; but it is decisive against the supposition of the careless use of lamps or combustibles.

 

The court of inquiry, nevertheless, reported that self-ignition was the probable cause of the disaster. "There is no evidence," they say, "as to the origin of the fire, and we are unable to discover how it occurred, though it probably had its origin in spontaneous combustion of some material in the forehold." Lieut. Berry has furnished in his report a list of this material, which was as follows: Lime juice, pemmican, beef, pork, rice, beans, sugar, molasses, pickles, running gear, and a large hemp hawser. This is a strange collection to engender fire without outward assistance, but it might conceivably have occurred in the hawser and running-gear, though it could hardly be laid to the charge or the lime juice and the pickles. The main hold, which was separated from the forehold by a bulkhead, contained only screened anthracite coal, and the court well say that had the fire occurred in the coals the gas would have clearly betrayed its origin. The fact is that, as the mystery is not yet wholly solved, the only resource has been to take what appears to be the least improbable cause of the disaster, and Lieut. Berry's first theory was afterward upset, when it was remembered that there was at the time of the fire a foot of water on the deck under the donkey engine, thus showing that the deck was not burned through. In any case, the court vindicated those who had charge of the vessel. The necessity of carrying all the provisions possible had caused the forehold to be filled to the hatch; and, since there was no evidence of carelessness in stowage, "it is our opinion," say the court, " that the calamity could not have been foreseen by the commanding officer. We do not find that there should be any blame attached to any one for the unfortunate loss of the Rodgers" It would seem, therefore, that whether the heat of the donkey boiler charred the deck beneath, or whether there was spontaneous combustion in the hold, no additional inspection of all parts of the ship, in the opinion of the court, would have seasonably discovered it. Nevertheless, it is perhaps not impertinent to suggest that, after this bitter experience, and with the present knowledge that a vessel on whose mission so much depends can be destroyed in this way, whenever another arctic expedition is organized a frequent inspection may well be made, provided leisure enough should be found when at anchor in Winter quarters, of every part of the ship which can possibly take fire either through charring from the boilers and steam pipes, or from spontaneous combustion, or from any source whatever. If the hawser was ignited, it must have been because the hold was overheated, and this fact was not discovered, as the hold had been shut up for two weeks.

 

It must be an inexpressible source of consolation to the officers and crew of the ill-fated Rodgers that even had she not been burned she could have been of no use to the survivors of the Jeannette. De Long and the two last of his comrades must have perished, as his diary indicates, just a month before the disaster of St. Lawrence Bay. We can only imagine what the feelings of the crew would now be had it turned out that the loss of this, the only vessel suited to a thorough search for the Jeannette, was a presumable, or even possible, cause of the failure to rescue De Long and his men. This result was clearly one that might have happened, and the apprehensions of the officers of the Rodgers until they learned that they need not charge themselves with this burden are not to be envied. The only melancholy elements in the actual train of consequences were the death of that energetic and promising young officer Master C. F. Putnam and the loss of a man on the Corwin, which went to the assistance of the crew of the Rodgers, and both these misfortunes might have happened even had the Rodgers not been burned. The vessel cost $100,000, and perhaps $50,000 or $75,000 more in preparing and provisioning.

 

The Rodgers escaped another possible cause of chagrin. Had it turned out, as it easily might have done, that by wintering in her quarters south of Behring Strait, instead of several hundred miles north-west, along the Arctic coast of Siberia, and nearer De Long's presumed line of retreat, she had sacrificed by a few days the chance of saving him in early Summer, the reflection would have been a bitter one. We know from Lieut. Berry's reports that he did at first contemplate wintering far nearer to where De Long landed, in the region of Cape Yakan, which he sighted; but contrary winds, heavy seas, and snow-storms induced him to come down through Behring Strait to the more familiar and propitious shelter of Lutke Harbor. In the narrow straits the ice is often blocked till the middle of June, or after there is a free course for steaming in the Arctic above and after the time when De Long's retreat began. But this possible delay of a few days or weeks in beginning the search for the Summer of 1881 turned out to be of no consequence, and in fact it had been carefully counterbalanced by establishing a small sledge search party on the island of Tiapka, on the Arctic coast, west of Cape Serdze.

 

It has been said that the true lesson of the Rodgers expedition is that the best method of arctic succor is not to plunge along the track which the missing vessel took, but to strike at once for her presumable lines of retreat to the nearest mainland. There is, perhaps, sagacity in this as a general proposition, but it is not wholly just if meant as a criticism on the Rodgers — it is evidently a suggestion from the inevitable but painful reflection that, had she known where to go, she might possibly have rescued the retreating crew of the Jeannette. In other words, had she gone, in the Summer of 1881, directly to the delta of the Lena, which was supposed to be the most probable line of retreat for De Long, she would have had ample time to find the shipwrecked crews. Or again, after searching Herald and Wrangel Islands in August and finding no traces of De Long, had the Rodgers, instead of revisiting the former island, gone forward to the Lena delta for Winter quarters, she might possibly have discovered De Long, who did not land there till Sept. 17, as his records show; nor was it until six weeks later, or Oct. 30, at earliest, that the last of his party perished. But these suppositions are all idle, since they imply a preternatural prescience. De Long might have landed at any point on the hundreds of miles of coast between the Lena and Behring Strait, and what in this case would have been said had the Rodgers missed him by going to the former point instead of first searching the intervening coast? The more just reflection is that if the Rodgers expedition was a failure, ending in disaster, it yet added one memorable gain to arctic research in its circumnavigation of Wrangel Island.

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