On this Day (January 17) – Japanese Sailors Rescued


They Had Drifted About tor Many Days in Heavy Seas


SAN FRANCISCO, Jan. 17, 1901 — The steamer Hong Kong Maru arrived here today from the Orient with a shipwrecked crew of Japanese aboard. On January 2, one day out from Yokohama, the vessel sighted a ship dismantled, flying signals of distress. There was a heavy sea running at the time, but Captain Kilmer stopped his vessel and lowered a boat and rescued the eight men who proved to be a party of Japanese, Commanded by Captain Adsuma.

December 7th Captain Adsuma had sailed (in the two-masted schooner Seisho Maru 0( Wakayaken, from Magaml, bound for Tokio. The vessel, which was loaded with lumber and charcoal, was blown out to sea by a heavy typhoon and dismantled on the 11th. For the balance of the month, until rescued, they drifted about off the Japanese coast. When rescued they were down to their last sack of rice. Owing to the heavy sea, Captain Filmer was unable to set fire to the derelict, which Is a 160-ton boat.


* Noteworthy


1524 – Giovanni da Verrazzano sets sail westward from Madeira to find a sea route to the Pacific Ocean.

1773 – Captain Cooks ships became the first known to have crossed the Antarctic Circle (17 January 1773). On 9th January Cook wrote:
“we hoisted out three Boats and took up as much as yielded about 15 Tons of Fresh Water, the Adventure at the same time got about 8 or 9 and all this was done in 5 or 6 hours time; the pieces we took up and which had broke from the Main Island, were very hard and solid, and some of them too large to be handled so that we were obliged to break them with our Ice Azes before they could be taken into the Boats”.
( Cook, Journals II, 74.)

1899 – The United States takes possession of Wake Island in the Pacific Ocean.

1912 – Captain Robert Falcon Scott reaches the South Pole, one month after Roald Amundsen.

1917 – The United States pays Denmark $25 million for the Virgin Islands.


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