from "The Dailygraph"
9 August (pasted in Mina Murray's Journal)
sequel to the strange arrival of the derelict in the storm last night is almost
more startling than the thing itself. It turns out that the schooner is Russian
from Varna, and is called the Demeter. She is almost entirely in ballast of silver
sand, with only a small amount of cargo, a number of great wooden boxes filled
This cargo was consigned to a Whitby solicitor, Mr. S.F. Billington,
of 7, The Crescent, who this morning went aboard and took formal possession of
the goods consigned to him.
The Russian consul, too, acting for the charter-party,
took formal possession of the ship, and paid all harbour dues, etc.
is talked about here today except the strange coincidence. The officials of the
Board of Trade have been most exacting in seeing that every compliance has been
made with existing regulations. As the matter is to be a 'nine days wonder', they
are evidently determined that there shall be no cause of other complaint.
good deal of interest was abroad concerning the dog which landed when the ship
struck, and more than a few of the members of the S.P.C.A., which is very strong
in Whitby, have tried to befriend the animal. To the general disappointment, however,
it was not to be found. It seems to have disappeared entirely from the town. It
may be that it was frightened and made its way on to the moors, where it is still
hiding in terror.
There are some who look with dread on such a possibility,
lest later on it should in itself become a danger, for it is evidently a fierce
brute. Early this morning a large dog, a half-bred mastiff belonging to a coal
merchant close to Tate Hill Pier, was found dead in the roadway opposite its master's
yard. It had been fighting, and manifestly had had a savage opponent, for its
throat was torn away, and its belly was slit open as if with a savage claw.
the kindness of the Board of Trade inspector, I have been permitted to look over
the log book of the Demeter, which was in order up to within three days, but contained
nothing of special interest except as to facts of missing men. The greatest interest,
however, is with regard to the paper found in the bottle, which was today produced
at the inquest. And a more strange narrative than the two between them unfold
it has not been my lot to come across.
As there is no motive for concealment,
I am permitted to use them, and accordingly send you a transcript, simply omitting
technical details of seamanship and supercargo. It almost seems as though the
captain had been seized with some kind of mania before he had got well into blue
water, and that this had developed persistently throughout the voyage. Of course
my statement must be taken cum grano, since I am writing from the dictation of
a clerk of the Russian consul, who kindly translated for me, time being short.