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1-262 (Original)

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addressee author,male,Broadside*,un
Newspaper Article
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Newspapers & Broadsides
Ingleton, 1988
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The Full Particulars of the Sudden and Awful MURDER of HUNT!
With a Narrative of the Mutiny on Board the MARQUIS of HUNTLY,
In giving an account of the Murder of Hunt, we cannot avoid casting a retrospective view at the circumstances which led to his transportation. We are far from being superstitious, yet we must acknowledge that it appears to us, that the hand of heaven interferes. - One of his associates in Crime, Hung - Another! saved for the mere purpose of becoming King's evidence, and again transgressed, and at this very moment waiting the punishment of his crime, and himself Murdered, before he reached the destination of his banishment - thereby terminating the existence of those who planned and put into execution one of the most cold blooded Murders perhaps the annals of crime ever related.
When the Marquis of Huntly, Convict Ship, sailed from England, she had upwards of 200 prisoners on board, among which, perhaps there were never a more desperate set of villians in one vessel before. Not a day, or scarcely an hour was passed, without some fresh tokens of villainy being practised; there were amongst the rest, a number which seemed to bid all law at defiance, and even dared the sailors to acts of hostility.
The most severe and strict discipline was obliged to be observed towards them; in short, their overbearing and turbulent actions called forth the greatest energy and courage of the captain and crew, to keep them in the least subjection. In many instances, the conduct of a few were such, that the Captain would have been fully justified in causing them to be hung at the yard-arm. But he being naturally of a mild and peaceable disposition, shuddered at the idea of taking away the life of a fellow creature, when it was possible to avoid it; therefore he only put into action every coercice [sic] measure that he thought might be the means of bringing them to a sense of their duty.
He talked to them, persuaded, and did actually everything in his power to make them change their conduct. It was oftentimes very dangerous for one of the ships crew to go into the hold, where they were confined. A single person would stand a risk of loosing his life amidst a set of such desperadoes as were there together. - Their conduct at length grew so desperate, as to oblige a threat from the Captain, that if they did not desist from such ungovernable behaviour, he would order the centinals to fire on them.
It does not appear that Hunt took any active part, or was a ringleader in their tumultuous proceedings; he was always looked upon by the crew as a well behaved and gentlemanly man, yet it was not deemed prudent to observe any particular degree of leniency towards him, lest the others should take offence at it, and being the cause of giving them some shallow plausability for their behaviour; everything, in short, was done for them that was possible, and every precaution taken to prevent giving them offence. It was the real opinion of the Captain, that they would mutinize whenever an opportunity should offer, therefore he was on the alert, and the crew, who had every instruction necessary, was always ready for a surprise.
Some time after a lad, of the name of Melluish (a convict,) was taken very ill, in fact so ill, that it was necessary to take to what the sailors called the dyeing pit. During his illness, and a short time before the poor fellow's death, which took place about three weeks after, he discovered to the Surgeon, that it was the intention of the prisoners, whenever a squal should spring up, and when all the sailors was engaged about the ship, to burst open the hatchway, murder the Captain and some of the crew, take possession of the ship, and commence piracy at once, that there being several old sailors among the prisoners, it would be very easy to manage the vessel; the greater difficulty would be in getting her in their possession. [106] 
They had been a long time preparing instruments to open the hatchway, which would be easily effected, in the midst of the confusion of the sailors, every thing might soon be done. - Blood and Murder was to be the order of the day. Not a single individual was to be saved, who dared to oppose their enterprise; it was even agreed, that if any of their own companions hesitated, or was inactive at the mutiny, that those who observed it, was at full liberty to murder them.
They obliged each other to take the following oath - at being made acquainted with the intention of the principal mutineers - that they hoped, should they betray their companions in misery, never to experience one moment of happiness! that they called down the vengeance of God to strike them dumb, blind, and deaf, and afflict them with some loathful disease, and that they should be punished eternally in Hell fire! with several more wishes of the most diabolical and shocking description. There was not a single prisoner confined who had not this oath administered him, at the same time standing on a Bible, with a Testament in one hand, a Prayer Book in the other, and one of each placed upon their head, in order, as they said, to be surrounded with the words of their God.
These particulars being made known to the Captain, he was satisfied at once his suggestion was right, and that the conduct he had pursued was proper. And he determined not to relax in his severity towards them, and always to keep himself and crew prepared for any surprise. - Every sailor in the vessel was made known the intention of the prisoners, therefore they was always well armed, and ready for an encounter of the worst description.
A few days had only passed before a gale sprung up, blowing hard North West. - It continued for several days, until at length it had become a compleate hurricain. - This was an opportunity not to be missed by the prisoners - and there is no doubt they would have commenced their diabolic proceeding before the before time, but the vigelence of the crew kept them kept I in awe [sic], but it appears that there determination was made, either to loose [sic] their lives or obtain their liberty, on the fourth night of the gale at about eleven o'clock.
A Gun was fired by one of the centinels which alarm occasioned every man to leap from their hammocks, and be up on deck instanteously so sudden indeed was their approach, that it put it out of the power of the prisoners even to open a single barrier. However exertions to force the main hatchway was such that the guards placed above, was necessitated to fire on them, which caused them to fall back and cry for quarter. 
In the approach of morning the sight below was horrible, five or six was observed to be laying dead, immediately under the hatchway, and several crying that they were wounded. - No person however deared to enter the hole, untill the morning of the second day, when the prisoners gave the most solemn promise that they would desist from any hostility. - The guard on this enterd [sic] - handcuffed and pinioned most of the prisoners, and began to remove the wounded men and the dead bodies, among which Hunt was one, a musket ball had entered the top of his head and pieced directly through the brain, which caused his immediate death.
A pardon was then offered to all, except the men actually engaged as ringleaders in the mutiny, on a provision that they would give up their names. A hundred voices was raised at the moment declaring themselves ready to acquiesce in any thing the Captain pleased. On silence being observed an investigation took place, when it appeared that the whole disturbance was caused by twelve of the most disperate, two of which had already meet [sic] the fate they deseved [sic], the others was immediately taken and hung at the yard-arm. It does not appear that Hunt made himself conspicuous in the affray - but being unfortunate under the hatchway, when the guards fired, - received his death by that circumstance, as soon as possible, we will give further particulars.
CHUBB, Printer, 63, Long Lane.