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Sailing Alone Around the World

Captain Joshua Slocum

Illustrated by
Thomas Fogarty and George Varian

New York: The Century Company,



  1. Chapter I -- A blue-nose ancestry with Yankee proclivities --Youthful fondness for the sea --Master of the ship Northern Light --Loss of the Aquidneck --Return home from Brazil in the canoe Liberdade --The gift of a "ship"--The rebuilding of the Spray --Conundrums in regard to finance and calking --The launching of the Spray
  2. Chapter II -- Failure as a fisherman --A voyage around the world projected --From Boston to Gloucester --Fitting out for the ocean voyage --Half of a dory for a ship's boat --The run from Gloucester to Nova Scotia --A shaking up in home waters --Among old friends
  3. Chapter III -- Good-by to the American coast --Off Sable Island in a fog --In the open sea --The man in the moon takes an interest in the voyage --The first fit of loneliness --The Spray encounters La Vaguisa --A bottle of wine from the Spaniard --A bout of words with the captain of the Java --The steamship Olympia spoken --Arrival at the Azores
  4. Chapter IV -- Squally weather in the Azores --High living --Delirious from cheese and plums --The pilot of the Pinta --At Gibraltar --Compliments exchanged with the British navy --A picnic on the Morocco shore
  5. Chapter V -- Sailing from Gibraltar with the assistance of her Majesty's tug --The Spray's course changed from the Suez Canal to Cape Horn --Chased by a Moorish pirate --A comparison with Columbus --The Canary Islands --The Cape Verde Islands --Sea life --Arrival at Pernambuco --A bill against the Brazilian government --Preparing for the stormy weather of the cape
  6. Chapter VI -- Departure from Rio de Janeiro --The Spray ashore on the sands of Uruguay --A narrow escape from shipwreck --The boy who found a sloop --The Spray floated but somewhat damaged --Courtesies from the British consul at Maldonado --A warm greeting at Montevideo --An excursion to Buenos Aires --Shortening the mast and bowsprit
  7. Chapter VII -- Weighing anchor at Buenos Aires --An outburst of emotion at the mouth of the Plate --Submerged by a great wave --A stormy entrance to the strait --Captain Samblich's happy gift of a bag of carpet-tacks --Off Cape Froward --Chased by Indians from Fortescue Bay --A miss-shot for "Black Pedro" --Taking in supplies of wood and water at Three Island Cove --Animal life
  8. Chapter VIII -- From Cape Pillar into the Pacific --Driven by a tempest toward Cape Horn --Captain Slocum's greatest sea adventure --Reaching the strait again by way of Cockburn Channel --Some savages find the carpet-tacks --Danger from firebrands --A series of fierce williwaws --Again sailing westward
  9. Chapter IX -- Repairing the Spray's sails --Savages and an obstreperous anchor --A spider-fight --An encounter with Black Pedro --A visit to the steamship Colombia --On the defensive against a fleet of canoes --A record of voyages through the strait --A chance cargo of tallow
  10. Chapter X -- Running to Port Angosto in a snow-storm --A defective sheet-rope places the Spray in peril --The Spray as a target for a Fuegian arrow --The island of Alan Erric --Again in the open Pacific --The run to the island of Juan Fernandez --An absentee king --At Robinson Crusoe's anchorage
  11. Chapter XI -- The islanders of Juan Fernandez entertained with Yankee doughnuts --The beauties of Robinson Crusoe's realm --The mountain monument to Alexander Selkirk --Robinson Crusoe's cave --A stroll with the children of the island --Westward ho! with a friendly gale --A month's free sailing with the Southern Cross and the sun for guides --Sighting the Marquesas --Experience in reckoning
  12. Chapter XII -- Seventy-two days without a port --Whales and birds --A peep into the Spray's galley --Flying-fish for breakfast --A welcome at Apia --A visit from Mrs. Robert Louis Stevenson --At Vailima --Samoan hospitality --Arrested for fast riding --An amusing merry-go-round --Teachers and pupils of Papauta College --At the mercy of sea-nymphs
  13. Chapter XIII -- Samoan royalty --King Malietoa --Good-by to friends at Vailima --Leaving Fiji to the south --Arrival at Newcastle, Australia --The yachts of Sydney --A ducking on the Spray --Commodore Foy presents the sloop with a new suit of sails --On to Melbourne --A shark that proved to be valuable --A change of course --The "Rain of Blood" --In Tasmania
  14. Chapter XIV -- A testimonial from a lady --Cruising round Tasmania --The skipper delivers his first lecture on the voyage --Abundant provisions --An inspection of the Spray for safety at Devonport --Again at Sydney --Northward bound for Torres Strait --An amateur shipwreck --Friends on the Australian coast --Perils of a coral sea
  15. Chapter XV -- Arrival at Port Denison, Queensland --A lecture --Reminiscences of Captain Cook --Lecturing for charity at Cooktown --A happy escape from a coral reef --Home Island, Sunday Island, Bird Island --An American pearl-fisherman --Jubilee at Thursday Island --A new ensign for the Spray --Booby Island --Across the Indian Ocean --Christmas Island
  16. Chapter XVI -- A call for careful navigation --Three hours' steering in twenty-three days --Arrival at the Keeling Cocos Islands --A curious chapter of social history --A welcome from the children of the islands --Cleaning and painting the Spray on the beach --A Mohammedan blessing for a pot of jam --Keeling as a paradise --A risky adventure in a small boat --Away to Rodriguez --Taken for Anti-christ --The governor calms the fears of the people --A lecture --A convent in the hills
  17. Chapter XVII -- A clean bill of health at Mauritius --Sailing the voyage over again in the opera-house --A newly discovered plant named in honor of the Spray's skipper --A party of young ladies out for a sail --A bivouac on deck --A warm reception at Durban --A friendly cross-examination by Henry M. Stanley --Three wise Boers seek proof of the flatness of the earth --Leaving South Africa
  18. Chapter XVIII -- Rounding the "Cape of Storms" in olden time --A rough Christmas --The Spray ties up for a three months' rest at Cape Town --A railway trip to the Transvaal --President Kruger's odd definition of the Spray's voyage --His terse sayings --Distinguished guests on the Spray --Cocoanut fiber as a padlock --Courtesies from the admiral of the Queen's navy --Off for St. Helena --Land in sight
  19. Chapter XIX -- In the isle of Napoleon's exile --Two lectures --A guest in the ghost-room at Plantation House --An excursion to historic Longwood --Coffee in the husk, and a goat to shell it --The Spray's ill luck with animals --A prejudice against small dogs --A rat, the Boston spider, and the cannibal cricket --Ascension Island
  20. Chapter XX -- In the favoring current off Cape St. Roque, Brazil --All at sea regarding the Spanish-American war --An exchange of signals with the battle-ship Oregon --Off Dreyfus's prison on Devil's Island --Reappearance to the Spray of the north star --The light on Trinidad --A charming introduction to Grenada --Talks to friendly auditors
  21. Chapter XXI -- Clearing for home --In the calm belt --A sea covered with sargasso --The jibstay parts in a gale --Welcomed by a tornado off Fire Island --A change of plan --Arrival at Newport --End of a cruise of over forty-six thousand miles --The Spray again at Fairhaven
  22. Appendix -- Lines and sail-plan of the "Spray" -- Her pedigree so far as known --The lines of the Spray --Her self-steering qualities --Sail-plan and steering-gear --An unprecedented feat --A final word of cheer to would-be navigators

List of Illustrations

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Notes to this Web Edition

We follow for copytext the Dover Publications edition first published in 1956, (ISBN 0-486-20326-3, LCC 59-7670), an unabridged reprint of the 1900 first edition. We omit Dover's copyrighted introduction by Geoffrey Mott-Smith. You may obtain a printed copy of the book from your local public library or bookstore. See our /Search/ page for more information. The text of this edition is in the public domain.

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