June 27 – Around the World - All Alone!

Posted on June 27, 2017

On this date in 1898, writer 
and adventurer Joshua 
Slocum finished the first 
solo circumnavigation of 
the world. 

In other words, he sailed all 
the way around the world - 

He did it aboard a sloop 
oyster boat named Spray
which was about 36 feet and 
9 inches (11.2 m) long. He 
sailed more than 48,000 
miles (74,000 km). 

And it took more than three 

One reason it took as long 
as it did - and why he 
traveled so many miles - is because, when Slocum first set sail from 
Boston, Massachusetts, in April of 1895, he sailed north to visit his 
boyhood home of Nova Scotia. He only left North America in July of that 
year, sailing eastward across the Atlantic. He intended to sail through the 
Mediterranean Sea, through the Suez Canal, and then eastward through 
the Indian and Pacific Oceans. 

But when he reached Gibraltar, he learned that there was so much piracy 
in the Southern Mediterranean, it was too unsafe - so Slocum went 
BACK across the Atlantic to South America, and then through the Straits 
of Magellan to the Pacific. That's a pretty big double-back!!

When Slocum landed in Newport, Rhode Island, his amazing feat drew 
little notice. While he was busy staying alive alone on "the seven seas," 
Spain and the United States had embarked on a war, and the 
newspapers were full of battle headlines. 

Luckily for all of us, Slocum took the 
time to write about his adventure: 
Sailing Alone Around the World

And he THEN got the attention he 
deserved - his book was very well 
received, and he was invited to 
give lectures and to be a part of the 
Pan-American Expo in 1901. 

Slocum was even invited to talk 
at a dinner honoring Mark Twain!

Would it surprise you 
to learn that this 

famous seaman met 
his death, at age 65, 
by being lost at sea? 
He went out on one of 
his usual winter 
voyages on November 
14, 1909, and he was 
never heard from again. 
In 1924, he was finally 
declared legally dead, 
although his wife was sure he had drowned by July of 1910. 

She probably knew that, despite the fact that Slocum spent so much 
time on the water, he'd never learned to swim. Actually, he considered 
knowing how to swim to be useless - which strikes me as entirely weird, 
but I gather that lots of people back then didn't know how to swim...

Also on this date:

Mathematician Augustus 
DeMorgan's birthday

National Sunglasses Day

Djibouti's Independence 

Plan ahead:

Check out my Pinterest boards for:

And here are my Pinterest boards for:

No comments:

Post a Comment