Wednesday, February 14, 2007

The Adventures of Benjamin Franklin Seaver - Part 8

This is the eighth post of a series concerning the adventures of Benjamin Franklin Seaver (1780-1814), who was a mariner, captured by the Moors in Morocco in 1806.

Part 1 is here.
Part 2, which introduced a series of seven letters published in the "Connecticut Herald" newspaper (published in New Haven CT, dated 20 January 1807 (Volume IV, Issue 169, Page 1), and posted the first letter, is here.
Part 3, which includes the second letter, is here.
Part 4, which includes the third letter, is here.
Part 5, which includes the fourth letter, is here.
Part 6, which includes the fifth letter, is here.
Part 7, which includes the sixth letter, is here.

I accessed the images of these newspaper pages on the "America's Historical Newspapers, 1690-1876" (provided by through the New England Historic Genealogical Society website, They are also available through (a commercial website).

Here is the seventh and final letter in the series:


Headline: No. VII. E. Smith and E. Daggett to Capt. Seaver.

................Mogadore, 18 Sept. 1806.
Capt. Benjamin F. Seaver, Wedmore

Since our arrival at this place, we have been informed by Messrs. Courts of your misfortune in being cast away, and of your present distressful and unhappy situation. To alleviate which, and to assist in procuring your liberty, we have left in the hands of Messrs. Courts, two hundred and fifty dollars, which with the sum they have generously offered to advance, is judged by them to be sufficient for the desired purpose.

You can make such arrangements as will be most agreeable for you, to repay the money to us in New-Haven, of which place we are both citizens, and hope to be there in about two months.

Should you be fortunate enough to obtain your liberty, we hope you will make such arrangements as you think most proper to procure the liberty of your crew.

We should be happy to give you a detail of American news, but our time will not allow of it; therefore we bid you farewel for the present, hoping at some future time to have the pleasure of a more intimate acquaintance. In the mean time, we sympathize with you in your unhappy situation -- from which we hope you will soon be relieved, and beg you to consider us, with every sentiment of respect and esteem,
............................Your friends and fellow-citizens,
Of the Brig Bellona }.......ELIHU SMITH
...of New Haven.....}.......ELIHU DAGGETT.


This letter completes the series in the Connecticut Herald. Unfortunately, there is no further record of what actually happened to the crew and passengers of the brig Indefatigable in this newspaper.

Stay tuned for one more newspaper article that explains what happened later. And then we'll discuss the ultimate fate of Benjamin Franklin Seaver.

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