‘It is to be understood that the author is not a sailor, but merely a civil
engineer Shanghaied as one.’
The winter holiday season shouldn’t be all work, so I’ve decided to put up some cracking reading – the wonderful Shanghaied out of Frisco in the Nineties, by Hiram P Bailey. I trust some of you find time to look at it, but if you don’t these pages will still be just as good in the coming year or any other time.
I don’t know whether the tale told here is exactly true, but it makes a wonderful romp. What’s more, the various scenes including the dead horse ceremony, crossing the equator and the return to San Francisco (including a splendid villainous melodeon player) have a real ring of truth about them – Hiram P had clearly either done a lot of research or had spent time on ship himself.
My particular copy clearly belonged to someone fascinated by sailing ships, as just about every blank page has a cutting from a Cornish newspaper about sailing ships pasted over it.
PS. Some of Mr Bailey’s biographical details can be found here.
Why not print these out so you can read them at your leisure?
For the rest of this series of posts:
Shanghaied out of Frisco in the Nineties by Hiram P Bailey – part 1
Shanghaied out of Frisco in the Nineties by Hiram P Bailey – part 2
Shanghaied out of Frisco in the Nineties by Hiram P Bailey – part 3
Shanghaied out of Frisco in the Nineties by Hiram P Bailey – part 4
Shanghaied out of Frisco in the Nineties by Hiram P Bailey – part 5
Shanghaied out of Frisco in the Nineties by Hiram P Bailey – part 6
Shanghaied out of Frisco in the Nineties by Hiram P Bailey – part 7
7 thoughts on “Shanghaied out of Frisco in the Nineties by Hiram P Bailey – part 1”
Looks like a great holiday read Gav. I spend too much time in front of the computer to be able to read a book online though. I’m envious of your library, you seem to have a wealth of classic, rare sea literature.
I’ve just read Theo Dorgan’s Sailing for Home which I didn’t particularly like but which kind of grew on me and now, with no new books to hand, I’ve fallen back, as always, on Patrick O’Brian’s Aubrey/Maturin series. Reliable stuff that never fails to transport me to the wide blue yonder.
Glad you like it!
Could you print it out perhaps – with a little care it should be possible to cover both sides of the paper… And once you've read it maybe you have a friend who could make use of it?
Thank you for scanning this book for posterity!
Do you have any biographical information on this author, Hiram Baily? I really enjoyed this book and I want to know more about his history. Thanks, Mary
I’m sorry but I don’t – and I can’t find anything much on the Web either.
Robb Robinson of Hull has just posted some background history to Bailey on Facebook. Many thanks for posting the full book. I will have a good read when I get time. Have you got any info on billyboys please? I’m gathering material for a book. I have most of the regular sources that were published in the Humber and East Anglia areas.
I hope you enjoy the Bailey book as much as I did. I’ve no idea how true his account might be, but it’s well written and a great romp of in the boys’ adventure book kind.
I keep thinking that there’s the ma of my a good, song-filled show in it, but haven’t found anyone who thinks the same and fancies giving it a go…
I’ll think about what I might have on my bookshelves about billyboys, though I fear there may not be much.