National Geographic : 1965 Jan
National Geographic, January, 1965 ship called Nuestra Senora del Carmen, alias La Holandesa, under command of Don An tonio de Echeverz, commander of the Galleons, who before me, the notary, took the oath by God Our Lord and the sign of the cross as is customary, undertook to tell the truth, and being questioned... the declarant stated that he departed from Havana on the 24th day of July in company of the Galleons and the Flota, and he was lost on Wednesday the 31st, at two o'clock in the morning, because of a hur ricane which came on from the east-northeast so strongly that although he has sailed the seas for many years and suffered through many tempests he has never seen another like it for violence, and his ship and all the rest were lost, some before and some after Palmar de Ays, at 28° 10'[North Latitude]... in an area nine leagues [27 miles] from north to south." As I fingered transcripts of old documents, I seemed to feel Havana's hot sun on my back. PAINTING BY ROBERT MAINMA // MIZZENMAST ADMIRAL'S CABIN CAPTAIN'S CABIN GOLD AND JEWELS STORED HERE RUDDER SILVER STORED HERE. . ... ... Wednesday, July 24, 1715. A signal gun booms from the flagship. Answering guns thunder from the grim walls of the Morro, and the fleet suddenly comes to life. Seamen jump to the capstan bars; the pawls clank as the great iron anchors come slowly aboard. Halyards are swayed tight and the yards braced round. The combined fleet of Gen. Don Juan Esteban de Ubilla and Gen. Don An tonio de Echeverz is under way. A handsome sight, these 11 vessels, as they heel to the wind in the pull of the deep blue Gulf Stream. The high-pooped vessels roll up past the Keys under a cloudless sky. Monday, July 29. Seamen look distrustfully at the sky. The sun still shines, but there is a slight haze. The heavy galleons roll in the long swell of a glassy sea. Under their lee are the sharp-toothed reefs and treacherous shoals of the low Florida coast. Tuesday, July 30. By noon the wind dies. W NICHO SON. NATIONALGEOGRAPHICARTIST CNATIONAL GEOGRAPHICSOCIfTY DRAWNBY R. W . ICHOLSON © N.G.S.