BN.com Gift Guide

Sea Venture: Shipwreck, Survival, and the Salvation of Jamestown [NOOK Book]

Overview


In one of the most triumphant high sea stories ever told, Kieran Doherty brings to life the true story of the ship that rescued the Jamestown settlement in 1610 and ensured England's place in the New World. When the Sea Venture left England in 1609, it was flagship in a fleet of nine bound for Jamestown with roughly 600 settlers and badly needed supplies aboard. But after four weeks at sea, as the voyage neared its end, a hurricane devastated the fleet, leaving the Sea Venture shipwrecked on the ...
See more details below
Sea Venture: Shipwreck, Survival, and the Salvation of Jamestown

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 7.0
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK 10.1
  • NOOK HD Tablet
  • NOOK HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK eReaders
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook - First Edition)
$7.99
BN.com price

Overview


In one of the most triumphant high sea stories ever told, Kieran Doherty brings to life the true story of the ship that rescued the Jamestown settlement in 1610 and ensured England's place in the New World. When the Sea Venture left England in 1609, it was flagship in a fleet of nine bound for Jamestown with roughly 600 settlers and badly needed supplies aboard. But after four weeks at sea, as the voyage neared its end, a hurricane devastated the fleet, leaving the Sea Venture shipwrecked on the island of Bermuda. It took Sea Venture's passengers nearly a year and half to reach their destination. Awaiting them was not a thriving colony, but instead the remaining fifty colonists--beleaguered, desperate and hungry. But, the question remains, would the English have lost their place in the New World if the ship never arrived? A story of strife and triumph, but above all, endurance, Sea Venture begins and ends in hope and remains one of the greatest "What Ifs?" in history. With a bravado reminiscent of Patrick O'Brien's legendary sea sagas, Doherty braves the elements, delivering a powerful history willed by a people destined to change the New World forever.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Doherty's fast-paced and colorful blow-by-blow account is a swashbuckling tale of adventure in the age of exploration."-Publishers Weekly

"Doherty's well-told yarn reveals the impulses both noble and base underlying any colonial enterprise, but it's even more effective in showing the unsettling degree to which luck stirs human destinies."-Kirkus Reviews

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781466852457
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 9/10/2013
  • Sold by: Macmillan
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 519,906
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author


KIERNAN DOHERTY is a freelance journalist and award-winning author of numerous biographies for young adults. Sea Venture marks his first history for adults. He lives in Lake Worth, Florida.
Read More Show Less

Read an Excerpt



1

"Preparations Most Urgent"

In the spring of 1609, all London was filled with talk of Virginia. Businessmen who gathered in the nave of old St. Paul's and in the vast courtyard of the Royal Exchange spoke excitedly of the profits that might be theirs if they invested in a new scheme to settle the rich lands named in honor of the Virgin Queen. Sailors on the docks and boatmen on the Thames traded in wild tales of the riches that waited in the lands of the Chesapeake. Gentlemen and poets who met in the Mermaid Tavern and other London watering holes mused late into the night, night after night, of Virginia, nothing but Virginia. Preachers spoke of the chance to do God's work while finding opportunity in that far-off country the Almighty had set aside for England. The unemployed and desperate, whose minds raced at the thought of owning their own land, made hurried plans to leave crowded, dirty, smoky London for a better life, no matter what the dangers.

Profits, freedom from want, and the possibility of escape from desperate lives, all these things and more seemed possible in this place called Virginia. Though most who dreamed of emigrating knew as little of the distant lands across the Atlantic as they knew of the moon, they were willing to believe the lines that had been written by the poet Michael Drayton, giving voice to the hopes and dreams of the first Virginia settlers who had left England for the New World in late 1606:

Virginia,

Earth's only paradise!

Where nature has in store

Fowl, venison, and fish,

And the fruitful'st soil

Without your toil,

Three harvests more,

All greater than your wish.1

It mattered little to these westward-looking Englishmen that many of those who had already made the journey from England to the lands they called Virginia found death instead of opportunity. It mattered little that in the two years since a group of English settlers struggled ashore in Virginia to establish a settlement they called Jamestown no fortunes had been made, no gold or pearls or silver had been discovered. This was a new day, a new opportunity for all to gamble their money (or their very lives) in the hopes that England would finally, after a long history of failure, establish a profitable, secure, and lasting presence in that far-off land most could not even begin to imagine, a settlement where dreams could come true.

One Londoner who saw Virginia as a place he might find financial salvation was William Strachey, a failed civil servant, poetaster, and sometime playwright. The son of a successful gentleman with landholdings in rural Essex, Strachey had studied law at Gray's Inn, but cut his training short to spend his time scratching out mostly unpublished verse and socializing with London's literary set.2 Strachey particularly enjoyed London's lively and rambunctious playhouses. He was a stockholder in Blackfriars Theatre and a regular playgoer who was almost certainly friendly with the company's actors, including William Shakespeare. Strachey was also acquainted with other well-known dramatists and poets of his time. In a letter, the poet John Donne called Strachey "allways my good friend."3 He was close enough to Ben Jonson, the poet and playwright, to write a dedicatory verse included in the quarto version of Jonson's play Sejanus, performed by Shakespeare's company in 1603 and published in 1605. Strachey's circle of friends almost certainly also included George Chapman, a collaborator with Jonson in the writing of Eastward Ho!, a somewhat scandalous play about the Virginia colony.

Living a literary gentleman-poet's lifestyle took so much of Strachey's time in the early 1600s that he seems not to have had many hours to devote to the business of making money. And what with evenings at the theater and afternoons spent in Southwark watching cockfights and bearbaitings and hours spent drinking and swapping lies with his friends, Strachey found himself forced to borrow heavily from London's moneylenders. In 1606, in an attempt to claw his way free from the morass of debt in which he found himself, he used family connections to land a job as secretary to the ambassador to Constantinople and traveled with his employer to the Turkish capital.4 His hopes of recouping his fortunes in the foreign service ended in near disgrace and even deeper indebtedness, however, when he had a falling out with the ambassador and was forced to borrow money to return to London.

By the spring of 1609, Strachey--he was aged thirty-six or thirty-seven by then--was so deep in debt that he feared imprisonment. Sometime that spring, a friend who had been jailed as a debtor wrote a letter to Strachey pleading with him for aid. Strachey replied that he was "haretly sorrie" he was unable to help, adding that he was himself in danger of being sent to prison "for want of present money."5 In fact, Strachey's situation was perilous. As the weather warmed that spring and the Thames thawed and began flowing again after one of the coldest winters ever, he knew that each time he dared to quit his lodgings for even a brief foray into the street, he ran the risk of an unpleasant scene with a creditor or--worse--arrest and a stint in the Clink or one of London's other infamous gaols.

Still, it is safe to assume that Strachey managed to sneak from his lodgings to meet with friends, probably to try to borrow funds or simply to escape the tedium of his rented rooms. It would be surprising if he did not, on occasion, make his way along Cheapside, London's main market street, to the turning that led to the door of the Mermaid Tavern, where his friends Jonson and Donne were frequent visitors. Perhaps it was there that Jonson told him--it was advice he gave to others--that the only hope for any man in debt was to flee "to Constantinople, Ireland, or Virginia" if he wanted to rebuild his life and repair his credit.6 Strachey had already tried his luck in Turkey, and failed. Now, while Ireland may have beckoned, it must have seemed to the impoverished poet that Virginia offered a better chance to escape his creditors and perhaps, just perhaps, his best opportunity, if not for riches, then for security and freedom.

And in 1609, he was ready to risk all to find blessed freedom from the financial woes that threatened to send him to the prison he called "that place of dead men . . . that Golgotha."7 Of course, he had heard of Virginia. He was obviously fond of the theater, fond enough to put some of his money at risk as a shareholder of the Blackfriars Theatre Company. He said, in a court deposition, he visited the theater "sometymes once, twyce and thrice in a week."8 Given his love of theater, it would have been remarkable if he had not been in the audience at least once when Eastward Ho!, coauthored by his friends Chapman and Jonson, was staged in 1605.9 He would have heard Captain Seagull, one of the characters in the play, cozen two young men not unlike himself into signing on for a voyage to Virginia where Indians, in Seagull's words, were so in love with the English "that all the treasure they have they lay at their feet." Like the other Londoners in the audience, Strachey would have been enthralled by the description of the land across the sea. And he must have gasped when Seagull went on to describe the treasure that waited. "I tell thee," Seagull said, "gold is more plentiful there than copper is with us; and for as much red copper as I can bring, I'll have thrice the weight in gold. Why, man, all their dripping pans and their chamber pots are pure gold; . . . and for rubies and diamonds, they go forth on holidays and gather them on the sea shore, to hang on their children's coats."10

By 1609 Strachey, like other Englishmen, knew that Seagull's words were not true. He knew that no diamonds had been found on Virginia's beaches, that no golden chamber pots had been discovered. But he also knew that the land across the Atlantic still held hope for men like himself who wanted to flee their problems in search of a new opportunity. And so, in the spring of 1609, William Strachey decided that Virginia was the answer to his troubles.

Copyright © 2007 by Kieran Doherty. All rights reserved.








Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 15, 2009

    Review of the Sea Venture by Kieran Doherty ****

    I found this book in the local library and began to read it there on my lunch break. After an intense intro, I found myself compelled to read page upon page until well into the book. It's references were sharp, detailed and accurate and the characters were well documented. This book brought insight to facts and historical figures that I was not aware of made my research Keiran's other publication. Short of spectacular this book is a must for historical lovers, romantic embracers and must have reading. 4+

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)