National Geographic : 1894 Jan 31
136 Magnus Andersen-Norway and the Vikings. we ought to be able to. I had confidence in the Viking. We got the ship fitted out and towed her around the coast to Bergen April 1. Finally, we were off for America. We had been out two weeks before we found what she could really do in heavy weather and how she could steer, encounter ing then a heavy gale which lasted thirty hours. Up to that time there wasn't a man aboard that took so much as his boots off; but after we found that the ship steered in all kinds of seas, that the rudder on the side worked finely, confidence in our ship gradually stole upon us, and after that we took it as easy on board of that ship as on any other; we undressed and went to bed, and I really was ashamed of myself for not believing in history. We were out six weeks altogether, forty-four days from Bergen to New London. The last four weeks we had a favor able passage, encountering some gales during that time, none of them, however, lasting so long as the first one. We did not mind that, because, as I said before, we had obtained confidence in our vessel, and my opinion is that really not fifty per cent of our seafaring class use as safe vessels as the Viking. I would not hesitate to take that ship across the Atlantic any time of the year when I have a cover for it. We had only a canvas one. For eight or nine days the thermometer was down to zero, but we were well dressed and fed and we were not troubled. On arriving on this side we had a series of astonishments in the receptions tendered us. I was astonished also that every body seemed to want to make the trip a kind of demonstration against Columbus's discovery of America. That was something new to me. I tried at banquets and receptions to explain that we didn't wish it that way. During the construction it was pro posed to the committee in charge of the ship that we call it the Leif Erickson, but we finally decided not to, as we did not want Americans to think us demonstrating; the Norwegian is modest. But after we found that the newspapers had taken the case up on this line, we knew there was no use of further discussion. When I get home and they ask me how this came about, I will simply tell them that the American newspapers did it. I feel very grateful to the American people for the reception they have given us and it will be very gratifying to me to carry home their good wishes. I hope that we have made the im pression we wished to make, that we had an old ship of the Vikings of long ago and that we have sailors at the present day.
1894 Feb 14
1893 Jul 10