5th Paper (5a.)
4th of July 1869
Lat.19.30 degrees North. Long. 17.46 degrees- Pacific Ocean
29 days from San Francisco, 6 from Honolulu
Here! Here we are. A beautiful day, (Sunday.) We are skimming gaily along from sea to sea. The water is beautifully blue. Our awnings are spread, for the sun is hot, and there is no noise save for the deep sh-sh-sh of the waves which never stops. A few aquatic birds follow us, and that is all. The sun rises over the stern and sets right ahead at night. It is the old story, one that we know full well, don’t we Pilgarlic? And the passengers! Well somebody said in a letter that the old Franklin would not get…
.. any I guess they don’t know that.
We have got three gentlemen and a lady in the cabin and a passenger in the steerage. Mr. Spear and Mr. Fisk are first rate fellows. I like them better every day. The others are a Chinese merchant and his wife, and a Kanaka woman. He has made his fortune in Honolulu and is going home. They are well bred, and as good passengers as ever I had. The other one is sick with consumption, but a very likely fellow. So I have company enough. Everything is as pleasant as ever it could be.
Messers, Spear and Fisk being book agents on a large scale, have splendid specimen books, and they have kindly showed them to me. Today it was a real treat. The books are splendidly…
…illustrated, They have in the cabin, The American Cyclopaedia, a splendid work, which with all its annuals is 132 vols. Mr. Spear reads from them every evening. Last night the subject was Henry Clay, the night before it was Andrew Jackson. Today, The “Immaculate Conception” It just suits me. If L. and the little ones were here I should want this to last always. Last week I overhauled my shells, there is just a drawer full, and about 15 different kinds, Some of them very fine. Today the fourth, we have had a very quiet time, and think of what is going on at home. A year ago I was bound there and was within three days sail from it. What a glorious time it was. So we go, now here, now there.
Time is flying away very fast. We are nearly halfway to Honk Kong. I am very busy during the week, cutting and making sails. We have a good many on the “Franklin.” Yesterday I cut a new main topsail, the most important sail of the ship. It took 250 yards of number one cotton duck. It is very pretty work. We have a good sail maker. The carpenter has just got done repairing the damage when we first left New York. I have made one bracket and intend on making lots more. Mr. Spear says he would not make one for $50.00.
I had a box of cider given to me in S. F. and a box of cake. I think it will be a good treat for us today.