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Barque Henrietta - 1840   FO446/4 folio 471, FHC mocrofilm 1494331
Marooned near Bahía Blanca, 1840
This short letter tells in few words of the dramatic destruction of a ship by fire and the marooning of the captain and crew on the coast near Bahía Blanca, 600 kms to the south of Buenos Aires. This letter reached the ship's agent, the merchant Samuel Fisher Lafone. The fate of the crew is unknown.

Bahia Blanca, Feby 9th 1840

S. F. Lafone Esqre

Dear Sir,
You will no doubt have received my letter of the 4th inst. informing you of the melancholy fate of my poor Barque Henrietta by fire on the 5th inst.

We succeeded in extinguishing the fire after being burnt considerably below the coppers inside, the copper alone kept her afloat; we slipt the cables and the remains of the hull on shore and have got about ½ of the copper off; we have also saved anchors, cables, jib and part of fore top sail and fore top gallant sail.

The remains of the hull is fast getting now buried in the mud.

We saved also about 38 hides that was very little burnt. We sent the pilot of[f] yesterday to the entrance of the port to look out for the other vessel we expect and have had no Chasque from Buenos Ayres since I arrived.

The Colonel informed me today that the two last chasques from Buenos Ayres had been killed by Indians, also Don Pablo Costa, Justice of Peace. The soldiers of this place has found their Body, about halfway from this to Tindel [Tandil].

There is not many Federals here, they are all looking anxious for a new Governor. We have a very poor tent having saved so few sails and we are two leagues from any house. The Colonel sent an officer to inform me that a Chasque goes to Buenos Ayres tomorrow. Excuse my hasty scrawl.

I am, Dear Sir,
Your most obedt sert
/signed/ Joseph Fell


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