12 Haziran 2018 Salı

TNT History Mini-Series: Accidental Turks in Brazil & Beyond (1866)/Part II

//Herewith Part II of this story: from Cadiz to the Canary 
and Cape Verde Islands - then, storm-tossed to Brazil.//


Cadiz is situated at 36 degrees 32 minutes north latitude and 6 degrees 17 minutes
west longitude.  It lies on a small peninsula on the ocean shore. Cadiz has very well-
ordered big buildings, large and small churches and barracks.  It is lovely city 
surrounded by a strong and sturdy wall.  Because of its safe and secure harbor on the 
ocean front, Cadiz is Spain’s most important city and commercial center in that 
region. Consequently, each day a great number of commercial ships and ferries 
come and go.

However, on the east side of the harbor there are swamps associated with a number 
of river branches, so in the summer malaria sometimes  occurs and the city’s people
move to the nearby towns and villages.  All kinds of fruits and vegetables are raised in 
Cadiz.  Grapes, in particular, are quite plentiful and wine and vinegar are sold in large 
amounts to England, France, Holland and other countries, bringing a handsome income.

In the northwest of Cadiz, in a place called San Fernando, Spain has its third shipyard,
comprised of three drydocks, shipbuilding yards, warehouses for ship provisions, 
various  buildings and quite a few factories.  In this same place there is an engineering 
school with 500 students studying to be artillery officers, along with a 300-student naval 
officer school, two artillery barracks and a hospital. Additionally, there is a remarkably
well-tended, sturdy and beautiful observatory atop a high hill.  All kinds of tools and 
instruments can be found within the observatory.  The great telescopes and other 
equipment are first-class and naval officers come her each day for astronomy and 
astrology  courses, as well as for implementation activities.  The observatory is 
completely funded by the state.

The warehouses and underground storerooms at the shipyard are filled with equipment 
for ships and since they are so well-stocked, when necessary, up to 20 warships can be 
outfitted in a short amount of time.  Since Cadiz has many railroads, postal vehicles 
and other means to make commercial life easier, great income is derived from agricultural 
and industrial products.  Nevertheless, because customs duties are quite high and state 
officials are overly inclined toward accepting bribes, the goods are sold at very high 
prices.   Cases seen in courts and other similar venues are not judged in accordance with 
rights and justice.  Women, in particular, are quite fond of foolish squandering and
displays of wealth, so there is a disproportionate interest in foreign goods, resulting in 
imports outpacing exports by five-to-one.


As soon as we reached Cadiz, our Captain presented an official document obtained via
 the Ottoman Consulate to the Cadiz governor and naval minister, regarding the need for
 the İzmir corvette to enter a drydock.  In response, the naval minister explained that 
there would be a wait of a few days since there was no available drydock.  Consequently,
we all had to wait at the port.  After inquiring a few times, finally, on the 22nd of 
November the İzmir corvette was taken to drydock.  The entire ship was examined 
and the decision was made to change the copper and put new copper on.  The copper was 
brought from a place called Mulafa and the ship was sheathed.  Some other minor 
repairs were completed, as well.

On Monday, the 3rd of December, the İzmir corvette was brought out of drydock and 
came alongside the Bursa corvette.  However, when it turned out that the ship was still 
taking on water, the Spanish shipyard officials and the ship’s officers examined it once 
again.  It was determined that the water was coming into the machine room and, since 
repairs would not be possible in the sea, the corvette was once again put in drydock.  
After the problem was resolved in drydock and the leak secured, the corvette emerged 
from drydock a second time.

At this point, though, the ocean sailing season had passed and winter was upon us.  
Already a number of ships had sunk because of storms.  A telegram came from naval 
headquarters in Istanbul telling us to remain in Cadiz until the end of March, so we 
spent the winter in Cadiz.

While we waited for money from Paris for both our sailors’ food and clothing expenses
and the costs related to repairing the ship, a telegram came ordering the Captain of the 
Bursa corvette,  Captain İsmail, to return to Istanbul; İzmir corvette Captain Musa Bey 
to take command of the Bursa corvette; and for Lieutenant Commander Ahmet Bey to 
become Captain of the İzmir corvette.  Once Ahmet Bey arrived from Istanbul and all 
bills were paid, we were ordered by naval headquarters to head for our duty station Basra.

Ahmet Bey arrived in Cadiz from Istanbul on the thirteenth of April and Captain İsmail
went back to Istanbul.  Within 15 days the expected funds came from Paris and, through 
the Consulate, all bills were assessed and paid and the requisite materials purchased.  
On Saturday, the thirtieth of April, at 7 o’clock in the evening, we departed Cadiz, fired 
our machines and headed out.  Since we left Cadiz in the Spring season, based on the 
weather conditions, we sometimes unfurled our sails and sometimes fired the machines, 
reaching the island of Tenerife in the Canary Islands on Wednesday, the fifth of May at 
10 o’clock, and anchoring in five fathoms of water.

Canary Islands

In previous times, when the Canary Islands were in the hands of African Arabs they 
were called Cezâir-i Hâlidât.  For a long time the islands were administered by the 
Portuguese and the Dutch, before the Spanish took possession of them.  Because of the 
prevalence of canary birds the name Canary Islands was applied.

The Canary Islands are comprised of the inhabited islands of Tenerife, Grand Canary, 
Fortavnatura, Gomera, Lanzarota, Palma and Hierro and there are a number of small, 
uninhabited islands, as well.  The population has reached 230,000.  The center of the 
islands is Tenerife, which is situated at 28 degrees 5 minutes north latitude and 17 degrees
7 minutes west longitude.  The provincial capital Santa Cruz has a port chief, a 

courthouse and a few fortresses, along with a population of about 30,000.

Tenerife is quite a lovely place, filled with orchards, parks and gardens.  All kinds of 
fruits and vegetables are raised in large amounts.  Since the summers are very hot, people 
migrate to the mountain tops and pastures.  The population is made up mostly of Spanish, 
whose skin color is somewhat blackish. Trade vessels and mail ships from Europe en 
route to North America, Africa, India and China stop here so commerce involving coal and 
other goods is prevalent.  Meat is hard to come by, though, so animals are continually 
brought here from the coast of Morocco.  Conversely, fish are plentiful.  People generally 
eat fish and dried fish are exported, producing some income.


After taking on the requisite coal and drinking water, on Saturday, the eighth of May, 
at a quarter to noon, we departed Tenerife Island.  There was a southwest wind that 
morning as we headed 1.5 ‘kerte’ (compass degrees) to the west.  Again, the weather was
fine so we used our sails and the machines alternately and encountered no storms, arriving
on Friday, the fourteenth of May at 4 o’clock in the afternoon,  at Saint Vincent in the Cape
Verde Islands, where we anchored in 15 fathoms of water. 

Cape Verde Islands

The Cape Verde Islands are made up of nine islands off the coast of Africa.  The 
population is 80,000, mostly negro slaves brought from Africa to do menial work.  Since 
the islands are mostly rocky, dry and extremely hot, nothing can be grown here.  The 
people get by with hunting and fishing. The capital of the Cape Verde Islands and its 
most famous island is St. Vincent, situated at 16 degrees 55 minutes north latitude and 
25 degrees 2 minutes west longitude.  Even though it is small island, since it has a 
good harbor called Port Grandi it is the preferred port of call.  Three thousand negroes 
live on this island and they work in the coal mines of English merchants for 5 kuruş per 
day.  There is no water on this island so by means of a machine at the pier fresh water 
is obtained from sea water at a very high price.  When it comes to food, whereas sheep 
and goats are rare, chickens are plentiful.  There are no vegetables at all.  The Cape Verde 
Islands are administered by the Portuguese state. 


Four hours after we arrived at St. Vincent in the Cape Verde Islands, a French paddle-
wheel frigate warship named Basa came.  My Captain sent me to this frigate, where I 
learned that the ship had come from Rio de Janeiro in South America in 23 days and
 was headed for Toulon. 

Storm-tossed Across the Atlantic to Brazil

After obtaining the requisite coal from St. Vincent, we departed on Sunday, the sixteenth 
of May, heading south with a southwest wind.  The next day, since the weather was calm, 
we covered many miles by firing up the machines.  On Tuesday, the eighteenth of May,
 with a favorable wind we stopped the machines and unfurled all the sails.  On the 
nineteenth, however, the weather turned bad and the rain began to pour, together with a 
fierce squall.  Right away, the topgallant and ‘abure’ masts were taken down and the 
booms secured, as we fired up the machines.

At this point we came upon the İzmir corvette and although the signal flags were 
hoisted a few times the terrible weather ripped the flags apart.  An hour later the İzmir 
was once again out of sight.  In short, the storm lasted for a full four days and put all
 the rigging and the ship’s crew in great jeopardy.  The bow and the topmast joists broke.
On the 23rd of May the weather settled down.  We opened all the sails, which was 
good for us, but with the weather so calm we were only able to reach a speed of 
three miles per hour.  When the wind died completely, we fired up the machines.

Crossing the Equator and Looking for an Actual Line in the Sea

On Wednesday, the 25th of May, at 47 minutes past midnight we crossed the Equator
 at 21 degrees 28 minutes  west longitude.  The extremity of the heat here cannot be 
described.  The entire crew was on deck tonight to witness the crossing of the Equator.  
As we passed the Equator, our imam said prayers. The strangest thing was that some
of the crew members thought that they would actually see this conceptual line, the 
Equator, and they stood on the chain wale and broadside staring at the sea surface for 
two hours.

The next day at about 4 o’clock we saw a ship off the bow.  As it got closer we noticed
 that it was coming toward us so we changed our course in its direction.  Our ship went
“subra grandi” (stopped by countervailing the sails’ booms).  We learned that the ship
belonged to a company called English Natural and that it had come to this point from 
Calcutta in India in 89 days, en route to England.  Without giving any information 
about our ship’s situation, we parted from them.

On the 28th of May,  at 6 o’clock in the evening, a fierce squall with hail erupted.  Each 
piece of hail was the size of a walnut and the sailors wrapping the sails sustained head 
injuries.  Fortunately, it only lasted for an hour.  On Wednesday, the first of June, a squall
 worse than the one I described above hit us.  Right away, we gathered the sails and 
lowered the upper masts.  The storm lasted for quite a while. On the third of June, with 
a favorable wind, the upper masts were brought out and all the ship’s sails unfurled.  At 
about 9 o’clock we saw a ship with the American flag and we passed from the starboard 

After sailing for three days in favorable weather, on Monday, the sixth of June, we saw
 the lighthouse at Cape Frio of the South American country of Brazil.   In the morning we 
could actually begin to see the cape itself.  Since the weather was calm, we fired up the 
machines.  Today we covered many miles and saw a few Brazilian ships.

'Ottomans are Cannibals'

The next day in the morning, the famous mountain called Sugarloaf at the mouth of the
 port of Rio came into view.  At 10 o’clock we entered the port of Rio de Janeiro and 
anchored in 12 fathoms of water.  We met up with the İzmir corvette here.  We were the first 
Ottoman ship to come to the port of Rio de Janeiro.  It is written in Brazilian history books 
that the Ottomans “are quite brave and heroic, but they are also cannibals!”  The Brazilian 
people, who knew nothing about us other than what they had read in these books,  gathered 
in a crowd on the shore when we entered the port.  Later, they boarded rowboats and came 
in droves to visit our ship.  But first, a naval officer assigned by the Brazilian naval 
command asked us questions to determine whether or not we were cannibals.


Hiç yorum yok:

Yorum Gönder