About Edward Howland
The following is a letter from the George Howland Letterbook 1837-1856.
11 mo 30th 1839
To Edward Howland 2nd
Master of Ship Golconda
The ship Golconda is now ready to proceed to Sea under thy command on her intended Whale voyage to the Pacific Ocean, the object of which is a Cargo of Clean white Sperm Oil – This may be effected by a close attention and an untiring perseverance on the part of thyself and Officers, but on thy own exertions more particularly does the success of the voyage depend – I am fully satisfied that a Cargo of Sperm Oil may yet be procured in the Pacific Ocean within a reasonable time, with reasonable exertions, every possible exertions ought to be made by thee to accomplish so desirable an object and to bring this voyage to a favourable termination – to do this thee ought not to shrink from the greatest possible exertions, thy reputation is at stake in it – I think thee must be aware of the importance of harmony being maintained between the Officers and also between the Officers & Crew – good treatment toward the crew will produce good treatment from them toward the Officers – I think with a little attention this may be effected to the satisfaction of all as well as being of material benefit to the voyage in other respects – I wish thee to have especial care of the Ship and all that belongs to her, see that nothing is wasted, or improperly wasted or used – keep the Mast heads salted, the Chain Cables & other chains about the ship free from rust, keep fresh water out of the ship as much as is possible & by all means, keep the inside of the ship clean & in fact have a general & supervisory care over all the several parts of the Ship & her appurtenances I shall not confine thy cruising ground. I have a good opinion of the Coast of Chile & Peru, the Off shore ground etc. I presume thee does understand the seasons for cruising on these grounds – if thee should not be likely to fill the ship with Sperm Oil, thee had better fill the Casks with Whale Oil than to bring them home empty – thee will run no hazard with the ship, take every possible care of her I make no Insurance – run no hazard with the natives any where – I expect that one of the Officers of the ship always to have charge of the Deck during the night as well as day time – I am not willing the charge of the deck should be given to a boatsteerer at any time, they are not responsible Men for such a trust – there is too much property in the Golconda to be entrusted to such men – I have furnished thee with everything that is thought necessary to procure a Cargo of Oil & likewise to recruit the ship when in Port, but still should thee find it necessary to draw on me I shall pay thy drafts – should thee obtain any Oil this side of the Islands & has an opportunity of shipping it home it may be consigned to my friends Josiah Bradlee & Co Boston, Hussey & Mackay New York Shober Bunting & Co Philadelphia, or Thomas Whitridge of Baltimore for me – thee will write me occasionally during the voyage thee may offer a bounty to the men for seeing whales, to the man who shall see the most whales $50 – the one who sees the next most $40 – & the next one $30 - & the next $20 - & the next $10 - & to every Man who shall behave himself so as to have the full approbation of the Capt & Officers I will reward with $10 extra – the best possible lookout must be kept during the voyage, as much depends upon this for the success of the voyage – wishing thee a pleasant voyage & safe return to thy family & friends & remain thy friend
Source: "New Bedford Whaling Museum"