The Missing Ship or The Log of the "Ouzel" Gallery



1705 “The Ouzel Galley Society”


Striding down the street came Captain Eoghan Massey of Waterford to take command of The Ouzel galley-his first command, for he had only recently been appointed to senior rank on the retirement of the aged and respected Captain Tracy…Captain Tracy had too much confidence in his old ship, in his former mate who now commanded her, and in her crew, to accept her loss as possible. He went out into the streets of Water ford and Dublin proclaiming his confidence. The underwriters, the insurers of the galley, were not slow to profit by the talkative ness of the garrulous captain. They claimed that he had constituted sufficient doubt to exempt them from paying compensation under this condition of uncertainty. The Law loomed large. But one Mr. 'Thompson, representative of the underwriters, more fearful of legal avarice than of parting with the more limited compensation, pleaded for arbitration. The parties agreed and a meeting was called. Six men representing the shippers and six the underwriters, with an independent chairman, met in solemn conclave. The case was heard before them. It proved a triumph for Messrs. Ferris, Twigg & Cash, for as a result of the judgment the insurance was paid in full. The experience of arbitration thus gained was to stand them good stead at a later and more important day…All these activities were to have their being under the title "The Ouzel Galley Society." This Society first saw the light in 1705, with Tracy*, as reward of loyalty, its first captain.


*The names of the first two Captains of the Society are ascertained from W. H. G. Kingston who states in his preface that the log was owned by Captain Massey whose greatgrandfather had been in the mercantile service. It was then ascertained that this was the actual Massey spoken of in his book as captain of the galley. If his name is correct then it maybe considered as fairly certain that Captain Tracy's name is also correct. It may be well to note that the names Tracy and Massey were unlikely names for an English writer to have given to two Irish seamen if they were not those of actual people.

Ref: The Ouzel Galley, Old Dublin Society, Special Issue Vol.3, no.2, p. 9,11,20



The Missing Ship or The Log of the "Ouzel" Galley: William Henry Giles Kingston (1814-1880) [Online Book]





Last update: 06 July 2012