HM Sloop Penguin collection  1814-1815
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Collection Scope and Content Note

The HM Sloop Penguin collection consists of 4 watercolor illustrations, 2 photographs, 1 letter, and one journal.

The Watercolor illustrations series contains four scenic views, presumably of St. Helena or Tristan da Acunha, tall ships in a small harbor, two distinct land masses, and a small settlement with fortifications.

The letter, dated February 18, 1815, is from a HM Sloop Penguin crew-member, writing to his sister, Mrs. Samuel Trigge, in Chelsea, England. The letter recounts many of the Penguin 's movements as they search for an American privateer that had recently captured an English ship. The letter describes the Penguin 's upcoming trip, which they did not complete, from the Cape of Good Hope to St. Helena, then on to the Island of Ascension and Tristan da Cunha, and finally back to the Cape of Good Hope. The letter describes the author's employment prospects and the possibility of returning to England, as well as his observations of life at the Cape of Good Hope.

The photographs are reproductions of a silhouette of a military man, presumably James Dickinson, and of a fine pen and ink drawing of a ship in a storm.

The journal has a monogram on the spine reading "S B." The volume's 81 pages (148 blank pages) document the Penguin 's voyages from August 17, 1814-March 22, 1815. The author dutifully noted wind and weather conditions and often included important events on the ship and ashore. The journal's daily entries vary from a few lines to an entire page, and ends on March 22, just one day before the Penguin 's capture.

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