Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Louisa’s Sailor

Learning the skills and art of tailoring, young Louisa was away from home for five years—away from the family she loved—but busy with relations and new friends that gave her much joy…

The 1820s were an exciting time to be a young woman.  Thoughts of “Pride and Prejudice” and “Persuasion” fill my mind as I read the words my  fourth great-grandmother left behind…

While spending time with a particular friend, Rebekah, she heard tale after tale of the seafaring brother—rarely returning to the home port of Boston.  Louisa’s lively imagination was captured immediately--

She writes:

“She (Rebekah) often entertained me with tales of her brother at sea, whom I had never seen.  She told of his adventures, of his narrow escapes from death!  He seemed to me a romantick being; such as I had read of; being bold and fearless amid dangers; who launching on life’s ocean main experience many miraculous escapes, and became renowned to posterity.  I listened to every word with interest; and indulged a hope that I should sometime meet the  brave young man!”

“It so happened that while spending a few days in the family, the sailor brother having landed in Boston Harbor, was impressed to visit his paternal home.  I was introduced to him as a friend of his sister.” 

“His first appearance seemed rough and unpolished, but his countenance indicated a heart sincere, frank and ingenuous.  There was novelty about him which attracted attention.  He was mirthful in the extreme, fond of singing and telling wonders.  He spent the winter of ‘28 at his father’s residence”

“He often mingled in the coteries {small, intimate groups of friends & acquaintances}, and amused the company with tales of his travels…We became in some degree attracted to each other.  I had never before been acquainted with one who was engaged in a seafaring life…He would accompany me, and speak with honor.

He left home in the spring, no promises on either side…and I knew not that I should ever see him again.”

{An antique “sailor’s valentine”.  Made of shells while away at sea, they were sent to the ones they left behind…}

To be continued……..


(Since I have no youthful portraits of either Louisa or Addison from this time in their lives, I’ve found paintings & portraits that, to me, illustrated this early part of their story perfectly…Thank-you, Google!)


  1. Oh dear...You are making us WAIT. It is very intriguing, and I can't believe you have these written words from her

  2. Oh you terrible tease!!! My goodness, I'm on tenterhooks waiting for the rest!

    You are most certainly blessed in the objects of your family's history, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for sharing them with us.


  3. AHHHH makes me want to fall in love again, maybe this time with a sea bearing young man