Sailing Alone Around the World

This entry is part 1 of 23 in the series Saling Alone Around the World

By Joshua Slocum

Table of Contents


A blue-nose ancestry with Yankee proclivities — Youthful fondness for the sea — Master of the ship Northern Light — Loss of the i — Return home from Brazil in the canoe Liberdade — The gift of a "ship" — The rebuilding of the Spray — Conundrums in regard to finance and calking — The launching of the Spray.


Failure as a fisherman — A voyage around the world projected — From Boston to Gloucester — Fitting out for the ocean voyage — Half of a dory for a ship's boat — The run from Gloucester to Nova Scotia — A shaking up in home waters — Among old friends.


Good-by to the American coast — Off Sable Island in a fog — In the open sea — The man in the moon takes an interest in the voyage — The first fit of loneliness — The Spray encounters La Vaguisa — A bottle of wine from the Spaniard — A bout of words with the captain of the Java — The steamship Olympia spoken — Arrival at the Azores.


Squally weather in the Azores — High living — Delirious from cheese and plums — The pilot of the Pinta — At Gibraltar — Compliments exchanged with the British navy — A picnic on the Morocco shore.


Sailing from Gibraltar with the assistance of her Majesty's tug — The Spray's course changed from the Suez Canal to Cape Horn — Chased by a Moorish pirate — A comparison with Columbus — The Canary Islands — The Cape Verde Islands — Sea life — Arrival at Pernambuco — A bill against the Brazilian government — Preparing for the stormy weather of the cape.


Departure from Rio de Janeiro — The Spray ashore on the sands of Uruguay — A narrow escape from shipwreck — The boy who found a sloop — The Spray floated but somewhat damaged — Courtesies from the British consul at Maldonado — A warm greeting at Montevideo — An excursion to Buenos Aires — Shortening the mast and bowsprit.


Weighing anchor at Buenos Aires — An outburst of emotion at the mouth of the Plate — Submerged by a great wave — A stormy entrance to the strait — Captain Samblich's happy gift of a bag of carpet-tacks — Off Cape Froward — Chased by Indians from Fortescue Bay — A miss-shot for "Black Pedro" — Taking in supplies of wood and water at Three Island Cove — Animal life.


From Cape Pillar into the Pacific — Driven by a tempest toward Cape Horn — Captain Slocum's greatest sea adventure — Reaching the strait again by way of Cockburn Channel — Some savages find the carpet-tacks — Danger from firebrands — A series of fierce williwaws — Again sailing westward.


Repairing the Spray's sails — Savages and an obstreperous anchor — A spider-fight — An encounter with Black Pedro — A visit to the steamship Colombia — On the defensive against a fleet of canoes — A record of voyages through the strait — A chance cargo of tallow.


Running to Port Angosto in a snow-storm — A defective sheet-rope places the Spray in peril — The Spray as a target for a Fuegian arrow — The island of Alan Erric — Again in the open Pacific — The run to the island of Juan Fernandez — An absentee king — At Robinson Crusoe's anchorage.


The islanders of Juan Fernandez entertained with Yankee doughnuts — The beauties of Robinson Crusoe's realm — The mountain monument to Alexander Selkirk — Robinson Crusoe's cave — A stroll with the children of the island — Westward ho! with a friendly gale — A month's free sailing with the Southern Cross and the sun for guides — Sighting the Marquesas — Experience in reckoning.


Seventy-two days without a port — Whales and birds — A peep into the Spray's galley — Flying-fish for breakfast — A welcome at Apia — A visit from Mrs. Robert Louis Stevenson — At Vailima — Samoan hospitality — Arrested for fast riding — An amusing merry-go-round — Teachers and pupils of Papauta College — At the mercy of sea-nymphs.


Samoan royalty — King Malietoa — Good-by to friends at Vailima — Leaving Fiji to the south — Arrival at Newcastle, Australia — The yachts of Sydney — A ducking on the Spray — Commodore Foy presents the sloop with a new suit of sails — On to Melbourne — A shark that proved to be valuable — A change of course-The "Rain of Blood" — In Tasmania.


A testimonial from a lady — Cruising round Tasmania — The skipper delivers his first lecture on the voyage — Abundant provisions — An inspection of the Spray for safety at Devonport — Again at Sydney — Northward bound for Torres Strait — An amateur shipwreck — Friends on the Australian coast — Perils of a coral sea.


Arrival at Port Denison, Queensland — A lecture — Reminiscences of Captain Cook — Lecturing for charity at Cooktown — A happy escape from a coral reef — Home Island, Sunday Island, Bird Island — An American pearl-fisherman — Jubilee at Thursday Island — A new ensign for the Spray — Booby Island — Across the Indian Ocean — Christmas Island.


A call for careful navigation — Three hours' steering in twenty-three days — Arrival at the Keeling Cocos Islands — A curious chapter of social history — A welcome from the children of the islands — Cleaning and painting the Spray on the beach — A Mohammedan blessing for a pot of jam — Keeling as a paradise — A risky adventure in a small boat — Away to Rodriguez — Taken for Antichrist — The governor calms the fears of the people — A lecture — A convent in the hills.


A clean bill of health at Mauritius — Sailing the voyage over again in the opera-house — A newly discovered plant named in honor of the Spray's skipper — A party of young ladies out for a sail — A bivouac on deck — A warm reception at Durban — A friendly cross-examination by Henry M. Stanley — Three wise Boers seek proof of the flatness of the earth — Leaving South Africa.


Bounding the "Cape of Storms" in olden time — A rough Christmas — The Spray ties up for a three months' rest at Cape Town — A railway trip to the Transvaal — President Kruger's odd definition of the Spray's voyage — His terse sayings — Distinguished guests on the Spray — Cocoanut fiber as a padlock — Courtesies from the admiral of the Queen's navy — Off for St. Helena — Land in sight.


In the isle of Napoleon's exile — Two lectures — A guest in the ghost-room at Plantation House — An excursion to historic Longwood — Coffee in the husk, and a goat to shell it — The Spray's ill luck with animals — A prejudice against small dogs — A rat, the Boston spider, and the cannibal cricket — Ascension Island.


In the favoring current off Cape St. Roque, Brazil — All at sea regarding the Spanish-American war — An exchange of signals with the battle-ship Oregon — Off Dreyfus's prison on Devil's Island — Reappearance to the Spray of the north star — The light on Trinidad — A charming introduction to Grenada — Talks to friendly auditors.


Clearing for home — In the calm belt — A sea covered with sargasso — The jibstay parts in a gale — Welcomed by a tornado off Fire Island — A change of plan — Arrival at Newport — End of a cruise of over forty-six thousand miles — The Spray again at Fairhaven.

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