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This Barren Rock

A True Tale of One Woman and Forty-seven Men, Shipwrec ked in the Southern Seas

This Barren Rock by Sylvie Haisman
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In 1875 the clipper Strathmore ploughs into the jagged rocks of the remote Crozet Islands, en route to New Zealand, drowning half her passengers and crew. Left alive are a 3-year-old boy, 47 men and Fanny Wordsworth, the author's great-great-great grandmother. This compelling narrative tells the story of her courage, and survival, against the odds. 1875 A true tale of Shipwreck and Survival in the Southern Seas Imagine one woman, forty-seven men and a three-year-old boy, shipwrecked on a tiny sub-Antarctic island. For seven months they eat albatross and burn penguin skins for fuel, before a passing whaler picks them up. the woman was my great-great-great-grandmother Fanny Wordsworth. She and her son, Charlie, were migrating from Scotland to New Zealand. two months out, their ship struck a rock, halfway between Antarctica and Madagascar... the Scottish clipper Strathmore sailed from London in 1875, laden with gunpowder, iron and immigrants. Wrecked at night in furious seas, half her passengers struggled ashore to the bare, inhospitable rocks of the remote Crozet Islands. there they remained stranded, struggling to survive the bitter southern winter, given up for lost by their families and friends. Over 130 years later, award-winning writer Sylvie Haisman rediscovered her ancestors' epic adventure. Drawing on their journals, faded photographs and letters, she unearthed a story of gallant sailors, orphaned children, cruel hunger and debilitating cold. the Strathmore shipwreck was a sensation in Victorian times. Now this compelling story of courage, endurance and the determination to survive will move and inspire readers all over again. Inspired by Sylvie Haisman's play, tELL ME A SHIPWRECK, broadcast on ABC Radio National
ABC Books; March 2011
256 pages; ISBN 9780730495864
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Title: This Barren Rock
Author: Sylvie Haisman

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