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Knottingley and Ferrybridge Local History

THE SALTFLEET SHIPWRECK

T'was on a bitter stormy night,
When the shipwreck did occur,
Down in Saltfleet Haven,
Which no doubt you all have heard,
John Adams was the captain,
With his wife and children three,
Likewise his brother aged nineteen,
Were toiling hard at sea.

The weather and the storm were such,
That caused them much delay,
And twice they had to anchor,
In Tetney Road that day,
At four o’clock in the afternoon,
The Haven they did reach,
Where the pilot and his men,
Saw them from the beach.

They went to their assistance,
Did all that men could do,
But the storm did get so violent,
Which made them anchor too,
Such a storm was not expected,
Which caused their chains to break,
And then they found to their dismay,
The vessel it did leak.

Then to the pumps they then did go,
The captain’s wife as well,
Toiling hard they did their best,
To save the children and themselves,
They gained upon the water,
And thought that all was right,
When the other cable chain did break,
Which filled them all with fright.

The vessel taking water fast,
All intercourse cut off,
They at the mercy of the storm,
Did feel themselves quite lost,
The children they fetched out of bed,
And kept them in their arms,
But when they'd done their very best,
They could not keep them warm.

Thus they kept on shivering,
As the waves kept crashing o’er,
Those three dear little children,
At last they were no more,
Oh what must be the feelings,
Of those kind parents hearts,
Likewise those most noble men,
Who held them in their arms.

One by one they left this world,
Their spirits took their flight,
Into the haven of sweet rest,
Where there is no dark night,
The brother also passed away,
The wife unconscious got,
Then the captain fell as well,
Most terrible was their lot.

The coastguard to their aid did come,
And took them to the shore,
But only for a little while,
Death came and claimed one more,
May god become the captain's friend,
And keep him on his way,
That when death shall call him hence,
They may meet where all is day.


Also of Interest:

THE SALTFLEET TRAGEDY by Stewart Hackney
DISASTERS AT SEA by Ron Gosney


 

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