Undiminished Violence

    • 10,99 €
    • 10,99 €

Publisher Description

"He who foresees calamities suffers them twice over"- Porteus

The year 1845 was disturbingly quiet on the east coast of the United States; no hurricanes or tropical storms had made landfall.

 However, the residents along the coast knew that there would be 'hell to pay" when '46 arrived. It didn't take long before a wicked nor'easter battered the entire coastline in February. The storm reached inland from Savannah, Georgia to Syracuse, New York where snow was "piled in heaps of all imaginable shapes and dimensions" while barometer readings plunged in just a few short hours.  

This was an extraordinary storm in terms of severity and reach. In Salem, Mass "drifts 15 to 20 feet are said to be piled up". In New Bedford, Mass "the quantity of snow is said to be greater than at any time previous in this victim since the memorable snowstorm in 1815. In Connecticut "the snow lies on the east side to an average depth of five feet, ad we have noticed a number of houses where it lies not less than six feet in depth directly against the front doors. In another, the mercury is down to zero, Fine times these!. But the storm reserved its wrath for those who happened upon the sea. The storm rose quickly from gale to hurricane force in a matter of hours and kept the intensity for days. When it reached the New Jersey shore it claimed nine ships, including the John Minturn, which bears the storm's name to this day. Undiminished Violence retells the events that led up to the storm, the storm itself, and its aftermath.

But it is far more than just a recounting of the weather and nautical events of the day. Undiminished Violence gives us insights into the passengers and crew aboard the Minturn, the freakish bad luck that brought some sailors aboard as passengers when weeks before they were victims of other shipwrecks themselves. The book focuses on the two major actors in this tragedy-the captain of the ship and the pilot who joined him to guide the ship into New York Harbor. We learn of the captain's prejudice against certain pilots and his decision that resulted in the deaths of his family, crew, and passengers. We also discover the heroism of one man who gave comfort to all and by his death had one of the largest monuments in New York erected to honor his bravery.

We learn of the captain's closely guarded secret from his wife and crew and the motivation which caused him to push his vessel , his passengers and crew into danger. And more broadly, the loss of the Minturn became part of a national story, when accusations were made that the residents of the New Jersey shore had plundered the bodies and charged a retrieval fee to their loved ones. The outrage caused the state of New Jersey to conduct a formal investigation into the charges and seek out the "barbarians".

30 August
Distinctive Press

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