The Wreck of the Wild Wave
The Wreck of the Wild Wave
By Thurman Petty
 

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“Breakers dead ahead!” 

The night watchman’s cry shattered the captain’s tranquility. 

He whirled about and lunged for the helm. “Hard to port!” he

barked, helping the helmsman spin the wheel.

“Harder to port! Harder to port!” shouted the bow watchman.

“She’s going to hi–!”

With a thunderous grinding and splintering, the bow rose high

into the air.  Everything on board lurched forward as the ship

came to a jolting halt. . . .

 The Wild Wave, a 1,500-ton clipper ship, left San Francisco en route to New York and Boston on February 9, 1858. It never made it. 

This is the story of the Wild Wave’s shipwreck on Oeno Island (one of the Pitcairn group), using Captain J. N. Knowles’s personal journal to reconstruct an incredible story of survival and rescue. 

Eighteen years later, this same captain would return to his one-time island prison with the first Seventh-day Adventist literature for the inhabitants of Pitcairn.