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Cape Cod Ship Ashore at Provincetown!

The cry “Ship ashore!” is still a thrilling one. Back in 1778, on the first day of November, it must have been more than thrilling. For the ship was the hated British ship Somerset.

She conquered ships, but she didn’t conquer the shoals. The news of her misfortune was greeted with jubilation. Her unlucky captain also had the disconcerting and ignomonious experience of surrendering (though not, at the moment, to his knowledge) to the village blacksmith of Provincetown.

The Somerset had a large number of men aboard. What to do with them? It was decided that they should all be marched to Boston a long, wearisome trek over rude roads. For a while, the local militia accompanied the prisoners, but then gave up and trusted them to make their own way to Boston. A number of them did complete the journey, but others managed to make their way to New York (where the British were in control of things). A few deserted His Royal Majesty’s service to sail on ships carrying the American flag.

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Cape Cod
Posted by Cape Cod - (website) on 03/02/06
Categories: HistoryProvincetown
Keywords: shipwrecks, history, provincetown


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