Have Sprung a Leak

Found 15 September 1896, Lescouet, Brittany, France.

In a bottle:

Should this be picked up, please make inquiries or send G. Sortel, Esq., 50 Sixth Avenue, Philadelphia. I, William Eden, of the sailing schooner Vedette, write this at the very last moment, expecting my ship to sink every minute. Have sprung a leak in latitude 8 north, longitude 28 west. May God spare us. W. EDEN. Captain of Vedette, Philadelphia.

No record was found of any vessel named Vedette out of Philadelphia. There was no such address as 50 Sixth Avenue, and no resident of Philadelphia named G Sortel.

[New York Times, 13 December 1896]

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