I had always heard that my ancestor, James Furse, was owed an estate back in England, but would never travel there because of a shipwreck he was involved in.I put it up to some story that was possibly not true, even though I had records indicting that he had signed over his estate.Then I found the following:
Friday Jan 11,1828
The Falcon sailed from Savannah on the 12th instant, bound for New York, having on board a cargo of cotton and rice and twenty-three passengers. On the 24th, at eleven o'clock, p.m. the vessel struck on the outer shoal of Cape Lookout, and aned b???ed. The sea beat her over into deep water, where ?? sail was made for the land, the crew employed in throwing overboard every thing they could get at, the vessel sinking fast. Captain Delane, to save the lives of the ladies, passengers, gave permission to them to take the boat, with two hands, and, if possible, procure assistance from the shore, but the panic became as great, that instead of eight persons going in the boat, the following persons jumped on board, ??? Mr.Colt, lady and child, of Knorhaven, Connecticut, Mr. Fort and lady, of Milledgeville, Georgia, Mr. Little and lady, of Savannah; Mrs. Dogherty, of Ireland; Mr. W. Scott, of Newhaven, Conneticut ; Mr. Brown, mate of the sloop, Wisen???, and Thomas, a youth of about 15 years of age, of Charleston, who was working his passage, and had been employed in one of the steam-boats between this city and Augusta. In about a quarter of an hour after the boat left the vessel. the sloop filled and capsized, the persons on board sustaining themselves by the rigging the sea breaking over them in this situation. Attempts were made to make a raft of the quarter boards, but they not being sufficient, it was abandoned. The only resource left was to stay by the sloop and ??? with her, or attempt to swim to the shore, six miles distant ??? of which were alike desperate. Under the latter idea, most of the persons on board threw off their clothes, and were severeluy burnt by the sun next day. During the time they were in this situation they were much bruised by the washing of the sea. At one o'clock p.m. on Sunday, the remaining persons on board, viz Mr. James Furse and son of Barnwell, South Carolina, Mrs. Catharine Lambs, of Ireland ; Captain Massey, late of ship Commerce, of New York ; Mr. H Prescott of New Haven, Conneticut ; John Caney, of Ireland ; John Gready, of ditto ; Patrick McCater, of ditto ; Lewis Carter, of Philadelphia ; and James Herton, of Ireland ( the latter died on board the Eliza, on the 11th) Captain Delane, of sloop Falcon, Arthur McDonald, Josiah Briggsm a black man, seaman, Benjamin Ross, black cook; and George, a black boy, were taken off the wreck, by the schooner Eliza. At the time the boat left the Falcon, the lighthouse was in sight and which those on board probably endeavoured to reach. Captain Casey informs us the shore is so very difficult to land upon that there is every reason to fear all on board the boat perished, When they left the wreck, she was almost entirely under water."