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WRECK OF THE WATER WITCH.

{From the Gladstone Observer, SGtli August.)

I'OTxiusE RLM oi asitismoio ficquently c died Masthead Reef, has been tho scene of another shipping disastei On Wednesday morning last, "t half p ist 5, tho biigantme Watci Witch, of 2C0 tons binden bound from Newcast'o to Macl a}, was stianded Hei crow consisted of six, cxclusixc of her master, Cap tain Gieeiilces, who has been ti ailing on the coast foi man} j cars dunng the whole of which time he nevei before met with a single accident He reports that he left Newcastle on the Otk instant with a wcstcily wind, and ex.

penenccd fane weither all the way till the time the v csscl struck the reef On Tuesday night last, at ü o clock, ho was about six miles off Jbustaul Head, the light of which was bearing south, and the vessel was being steered noith west, whilst the wind was WSW At 12 midnight Bustard Head light boro S bj E i E, the vessel still steeuug a noithwest Louise, at which hoiu ho went below, and the mate took chai gc of the v cssel, w íth lnsti uctions to keep steering noi th w est At halt past 3 the following morning (20th instant) he was awakened by the vessel striking on the reef, the tide at the time being at its lowest, and the vessel sailing about tinco knots When ho carne on deck he could see the surf breaking on tho leewaid side about 300 yards distant, but theio were no breakers around the vessel It was impossible to get an anchor out owing to the stiong roll of the sea, in consequence of which it was deemed

advisable to abandon her in older to save the lives of the ciew The captain wished to remain by the ship till diyhght, but the mate thought it better to leave hei beforo the sea got up, as the tide and sea were în cieasing and the vessel was bumpinghcavdy on tho reef A start w as then made for Masthead Island, w lth the boats, about three and a half miles distant After wailing m water, vxiist deep, and carr} ing the boat over scv oral shallow places, the} reached the island at 7 a ni Here they remained all Wednesday and the follow ing ni¿ht, and at 10 i m onThursd ly they launched a boat, vi Inch in the meantime had been pulled up on the beach above high water mark, and again put olt to the Watci Witch for fresh provisions and watci, as none were to bo ob tamed on the island The only water to bo found on Masthead Island was a little m an iron case, evidently left there after the lato casualty to the Deutchland At this time the weathci had niedeiatcd, and the} reached the vessel between 12 and 1 o'clock midday On sounding the pump it was found that llieievveie 5ft of water ni the hold, and the ficsh water was difficult to obtain While in the act of Îfetting out moie pi ox isions tho ketch Whaup love in sight The mate and ono of the crew of tho Water Witch manned a boat and pulled out to uci, and Captain Brown readily con sented to tako them on to Maryborough, whither ho was bound Under the circum stances, and there was no chance of getting thexesseloif the reef, it was decided to take advantage of tho offer made by Captain Brown, but owing to the strong head wind blowing, preventing the Whaup proceeding on hei voyage, Captam Brown boto up for Gladstone and landed the crew of the Water Witch on Friday evening last In then burr} to get on board the Whaup the log book and charts xv eie left behind Hie only propeity that was biou0ht away was th«, ships compass, two boats, and sonic papéis, which the receivei of wrecks here has taken charge of Captain Greenlees is not aware whether the Water Witch is insured. Ho. wishes to publicly return thanks to Captain Brow n, of the Whaup, for

the very kind attention shown to himself and crew. Tho cargo consisted of 215 tons of coal and (3000 Hobart palings. Her owner is Mr. Philips, of Bathurst-streot, Sydney. An inquiry into the circumstances was hold at the Custom-houso on Saturday, conducted by the sub-collector of customs, Captain Ilbery, and Pilot AVhitfield, In addition to Captain Green Ices, tho mate and two seamen were called

upon to give evidence, which corroborated the

above.

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