Author Topic: Captain Jonathan Clarke of Nantucket & whaling ship  (Read 194 times)

Offline WendyNapierWalker

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Captain Jonathan Clarke of Nantucket & whaling ship
« on: Monday 16 October 17 06:31 BST (UK) »
I am researching Hans Homman FALK (Felk) aka Philip TAPSELL who was born c 1777 in Copenhagen, Denmark.  He arrived in New Zealand c 1809.  Philip Tapsell died in NZ in 1873.

The book "A Trader in Cannibal Land" by James Cowan mentions that around the time that England was at war with European powers Falk changed his name to Philip Tapsell.  He was a "Petty Officer on board a whaling vessel".  This ship was English and Captain Jonathan Clarke was an American of Nantucket.  A chapter in the book talks about TAPSELL's time on board the vessel which is not named and talks about the "brutal character" of the captain.  "When at sea about two hundred miles from Boru, in Timor the opportunity for escape arrived unexpectedly" and a number of crew jumped ship.

The chapter also refers to the vessel "Grand Sachem" - Captain Donnovan (could this be Capt Dunnaman?) also on a whaling voyage.  Refers to the "Sultan".

Five of the crew ended up on the HMS Lion.

The whaling vessel returned to London after a "cruise of three years and seven months Captain Clarke at first refused to pay Tapsell his lay or share of the earnings of the voyage.  Tapsell went to a lawyer and Clarke was forced to "disgorge besides having to pay all the law expenses" .

Can anybody assist with the name of this vessel, approx timing of the voyage and some information on Captain Jonathan Clarke?

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Offline SLStephens

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Re: Captain Jonathan Clarke of Nantucket & whaling ship
« Reply #1 on: Monday 16 October 17 22:56 BST (UK) »
Here is one mention of the captain and his ship:

https://www.nha.org/library/ms/ms10.htm

Also, by Googling you can find several mentions of a Jonathan Clarke involved in the Boston Tea Party.

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Offline WendyNapierWalker

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Re: Captain Jonathan Clarke of Nantucket & whaling ship
« Reply #2 on: Tuesday 17 October 17 04:19 BST (UK) »
Thanks for your posting and link.

On the British Southern Whale Fishery website I found Captain Jonathan Clarke as Master of the "Eliza" on a whaling voyage from 19 February 1810 returning on 16 September 1812.