the spring of 1925 people were running from house to house with the news
a ship had run ashore on gull ledge. The old fellows with a smile on their
faces wondering if she would have rum on her, as previous wrecks had.
Pretty soon all the small boats of the village were out there to discover
she was a French ship of 25000 tons loaded with coal. The crew stayed
on her for about four days and a storm came, and the ship was taking on
water so the ship was abandoned. White Head moved on board. What they
found was very little of any use to fisherman. In those times ships had
no refrigerating facility so carried their meat on the hoof.
There were three big pigs and a cow and numerous chickens running around
the deck and below deck rats by the score. Over the next two years W.H.
was infested with them. On the wreck men were climbing masts removing
rope tacks and nobody was too excited until Joe hollered, "Boys I
found it." Joe had got into a storeroom and found sacks and sacks
of mixed nuts and barrels and barrels of wine.
Glory to God what a situation to be in. All that wine in barrels that
could not be put in the boats as it was too rough a sea to bring a boat
alongside and no other container then your stomach to carry it away in.
There was just a rope ladder down the side of the ship and the boats would
come along side and drop all but one person off on the ship, and the others
would lay off
from the ship where there was no danger of getting the boat smashed.
Some of the men emptied their gasoline cans over the side to fill with
wine, others went in stocking their hip rubbers full and the other unfortunates
had nothing but their stomachs such as poor Pa.
When Pa landed home that day Mom and us kids were very anxious to hear
about the wreck.
All Pa said was, "Oh well she's just like any other wreck, she's
on the rocks." All Pa got out of the wreck was a pair of wooden sole
clogs; those have just a wood sole with a leather strap over your toes,
a white hat like they wear in the jungle, and part of a mirror in a frame.
Of course he did quite well on the wine considering he had no container.
Pa sure looked funny but nobody laughed.