The Daily Universal Register of London
Tuesday, November 22, 1785
A private letter received yesterday from New York dated September 17, gives the following account of the unfortunate disaster which befel the ship Faithful Steward, Connoly M'Casland, Master, from Londonderry, bound to Philadelphia. "On the 9th day of July last, said vessel sailed from Londonderry, having on board 249 passengers of respectability, who had with them property to a very considerable anount. They had a very favourable passage, during which nothing of moment occurred, the greatest harmony having prevailed amongst them, until the night of Thursday the 1st instant, when at the hour of ten o'clock it was thought advisable to try for soundings, and to their great surprise found themselves in four fathoms water. On the second instant they ran aground on Mohoba where they beat to pieces and all on board, except 68 persons perished."
About the same time a French brig from Ostend, bound to the same port, foundered in sight of the above ship, but the crew taking to their boats were saved. We have not learned her name or any other particulars.
The Daily Universal Register of London,
Thursday, November 24, 1785
Extract of a letter from a passenger on board the Faithful Steward, of Londondrry, Conolly M'Causland Master, dated Philadelphia, September ??, 1785
"On the 9th day of July last we sailed from Londonderry, having 249 passengers of respectability, who had with them property to a considerable amount. "We had a favourable passage; during which nothing of moment occurred, the greatest harmony prevailed among them, until the night of thursday the 1st instant September, when at the hour of ten o'clock it was thought adviseable to try for soundings, when to our surprize we found ourselves in four fathoms of water, though at dark there was not the smallest appearance of land.
"The consternation and astonishment which now prevailed is easier conceived than described; every exertion was used to run the vessel off shore, but in a few minutes she struck the ground, when it was found necessary, as the last possible remedy, to cut away her masts, &c. all of which went overboard."On the morning of the 2d, we found ourselves on Mohoba-bank, near Indian river, above four leagues to the southward of Cape Henlopen. Every effort was made to save the unhappy sufferers, who remained in the wreck during the night, although distant from the shore only about 100 yards.
The very same evening she went to pieces. "The sea running extremely high, the boats were with difficulty engaged from the wreck, but before they could be manned they drifted ashore; therefore all relief was cut off, except by swimming or getting ashore on pieces of the wreck, and I am sorry to add, that of the above only 68 persons were saved, among which were the master, his mates, and 10 seamen. During the course of the day the inhabitants came down to the beach in numbers, and used every means in their power to relieve the unfortunate people on board, among whom were about 100 women and children, of which only seven women were saved. Several persons who escaped from the wreck are since dead from the number of wounds they received, and many others are most miserably bruised.
"Several humane and public-spirited gentlemen of this city are about raising a subscription for the relief of the unhappy people who were saved from the wreck, and there can be no doubt of their meeting with great success from the benevolent inhabitants, who have never been backward in generously affording assistance to the distressed...."