A Harbour I Will Never See

Found February 1865, near Silloth, Solway Firth, Cumbria.

In a bottle:

My dear wife — My vessel, the Caledonia brig, of Belfast, is about to go down. I am running her for the Isle of Man; but a harbour I will never see. My men are all reconciled to their Heavenly Father’s will. My dear wife, I am leaving you in sore distress, with a heavy charge, but I know that the Lord will fulfil his promises to you; you have long sought Him. I have my Shipwrecked Mariners’ Fund cards all with me. I now leave you, my dear wife and children, to the Lord. Them that find this letter hoping they will send it to Belfast to the News-Letter Office. — John Nisbett.

A year later, at a meeting of the Shipwrecked Mariner’s Society in Belfast, it was announced that, “a widow named Nisbett, residing in Belfast, whose husband was a subscriber to the society, obtained relief for herself and children to the amount of £13 9s 3d, and will have a small grant annually while the children are unable to provide for themselves.” Mrs Nisbett had provided the Society with her husband’s letter as proof of his death.

[Belfast News-Letter, 27 February 1865 and Londonderry Standard, 17 February 1866]

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