She is well built of good materials. Her frame, all her hooks, pointers and knees are of white oak, and her planking and ceiling of hard pine. Her keel is 14 inches square, floor timbers 11 by 14, and she has two depths of keelsons, each 14 inches square, the whole fastened with copper and iron in the usual style. The floor ceiling is 4 inches thick over the bilge; the ceiling commences at 9 by 14, and diminishes without projection to 7 inches thickness, and under the hold beams (for she has a full set of beams for between decks) there are two thick strakes, and over them a standing strake; and the ceiling above is 5 inches thick. All her ceiling is scarphed, square fastened and keyed, and the thick work bolted edgeways. The hold beams are without knees, but are clasped at the ends with iron to the timbers, and the stanchions are 6 by 11 inches, extending to the beams under the deck, their whole width. The beams of both decks are 12 by 14 inches. The upper deck beams have a clamp of 7 by 14 inches under them, and have hanging and lodging knees, well fitted and strongly fastened. She has 4 hooks and pointers forward and 3 aft. The upper deck waterways are 10 by 14 inches, with 2 thick strakes inside of them, and the deck-plank is 3½ inches thick. Her bulwarks are built solid, like those of a ship of war, and the monkey-rail and house are panelled. Outside she is black and inside pearl color. The garboards are 7 by 14 inches, the bottom planking 4 inches thick, and the wales 5 by 7 inches, square-fastened with treenails, butt and bilge-bolted with copper, and finished smooth as joiner work.
She is a full rigged barque. The masts rake, 1, 1¼ [?] and 1½ inch to the foot, and are 53, 57, and 56 feet long above deck; for and main topmasts, &c., alike, viz: 38, 19, 13 and 7 feet; mizzentopmast 31, 14, and 8 feet long; yards upon the fore and main masts, 66,50, 35 and 24 feet square; bowsprit, 16 feet outboard, jibbooms 14 and 12, with 4½ feet end, and the other spars in proportion. Her masts are bright, and yards white and are well and neatly rigged. Francis Low & Co. rigged her. Messrs. Porter & Co. made her sails, and Mr. Thomas J. Shelton, (who does all Mr. McKay's blocking,) made her blocks, pumps, &c. She is not heavily sparred, but looks snug and handy aloft.
She was built at East Boston by Donald McKay, and is another specimen of his skill as a great mechanic. Although of a fuller model than any vessel of her register in Boston, she is so finely proportioned, that she vies in beauty with many of our crack clippers. She was built and equipped, under the superintendence of her commander, Capt. Jas. Wheeler, and experienced and skilful sailor. He takes a deep interest in the African race, and is well acquainted with the "lingo" of the coast. He thinks our Colonization Society could do much good, if they would educate native missionaries, and have stations along the coast, protected by the cruisers for a few years. The negro, he contends, is as susceptible of civilization as the Hindoo, and is far more manageable than the Malay.
The Benin is owned by Thos. Harrison, Esq. of Liverpool. In a few days she will sail for Liverpool. Good luck to her.
Transcribed by Lars Bruzelius
Sjöhistoriska Samfundet | The Maritime History Virtual Archives | The Boston Daily Atlas.
Copyright © 2000 Lars Bruzelius.