Capt. E T Jones

From My Life at Sea by Commander W Caius Crutchley

SS African 1881

My chief officer in the African was a man I have mentioned before, E. T. Jones, who wore an abnormally large black beard, from which he had acquired the soubriquet of “Black Jones.”

I had the very highest regard for him in every way. When we arrived home in February 1881, as a matter of course I went to London to see the directors. At that time the Roman had been chartered to take out troops to Natal.

There was then no master appointed to her, and I was questioned as to the ability of my chief officer, to which I replied that he was as good a man as I was. But, said one director, “is that the man with a black beard that looks like a pirate?” and the conversation closed with a laugh, and the intimation that they would come to Southampton to see about it.

When I returned that evening I got hold of Jones, and much against his will took him to a barber’s and had his beard off. It was a time for heroic measures, for that use of the shears probably decided the matter in his favour.

As, however, it would not do to send out troops with a man whose first voyage it was in command, he took the African and I the Roman, with orders to change again on the coast.

Union Line Home Page
Previous Page Next Page Go to Home Page South American Saint Line Springbok Line Castle line Union Steamship Co Union-Castle Line inc Union Line and Castle Line Scottish Tankers Scottish Shire Line Safmarine Mail Ships Houston Line Hector Whaling Co Clan Line Steamers Cayzer Irvine/CI Shipping Bullard King B & C Home Page Bowater Steamship Co Select Crew Lists King Line Steamship Co