Thursday, April 18, 2013

Book Review: The Legacy of the Voyage: Ship Brooklyn 1846

This is a pamphlet which has handed out to those who attended the dedication of the Oakland Temple Hill Memorial to the Ship Brooklyn.  The memorial is across of the doors to the temple, against the railing overlooking the Bay.  You will find an area with a floor that looks like the planks of a ship deck, in the shape of the front of a ship.  You can go to the front of this, and stand overlooking the Bay and pretend you are in the front of The Brooklyn. 
The pamphlet provides a brief history of the voyage.  This voyage left New York Feb. 4, 1846, heading for California.  It would be a journey of 20,000 miles aboard a ship 125 feet by 28 feet at the beam.  There were 158 adults and 100 children; most traveled in families.  They would be blown off course by a terrible storm, almost reaching Africa.  They would stop at Juan Fernandez Island and Hawaii for supplies.  When they left California was part of Mexico.  When they arrived, as a result of the Mexican American War, they would enter the Bay to be greeted by U.S. Navy warship. 
These Saints would be tried.  There were several deaths during the journey.  As they were caught in a wild storm, the Captain was ready to give up for lost.  “There is a time in every’ man’s life when it is fitting that he should prepare to die.  That time has come for us and unless God interposes, we shall all go to the bottom; I have done all in my power, but this is the worst gale I have known ever since I was master of a ship.”  The response of most of the passengers was one of faith.  One exclaimed, “We have been called b the Lord to go to California.  I have no more fear than though we were on solid land.”
They had to endure hardship, from lack of food and water.  The water would grow a thick and ropey slime.  The food would be infested by cockroaches and rats.  While on board ship they read from the Bible, Book of Mormon and Harper’s Library.  They were anxious to learn and improve themselves. 
They passengers of the Brooklyn had a deep pioneer heritage.  Many eventually went to Utah when the Saints stopped there.  Others, such was John Horner, stayed in Utah, but helped the Saints as he could, and would hold meetings in his home. 
This pamphlet includes a list of the Brooklyn Saints, as well as a good biography.  Even though it is short (15 pages) there is lots of good information.

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