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Roared Like A Lion

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"No," said Captain J. A. Crossman of South Portland, "we didn't encouni ter the sea serpeut, but we had a strange ' experienoe with a whale, and I dou't ! believe anybody ever had the like be: fore. I've been at soa, man and boy, eiuce I was 9 years oíd, and I never saw the like of the whale we eucountered. I never saw a whale before that didn't blow, but the one we met didn't, but it gave a roar that was awfnl. ' ' "It souuded like the lions in Central park, New York, ' ' said Miss Houston, who was one of the party that had the strange enconnter. "It certainly was more like the roar of a lion than auything else I can think of, " said Captain Crossinan. The schooner Grace Webster, Captain Crossman, was on her way from New York lo Portland with 414 tons of coal. Besides the captain and crew Mrs. Crossman, her daughter and Miss Houston were on board. The schooner was about ten milos off Wood island and making good headway under fnll gail, the mate, Merrill Crossman, at the wheel, when there was a sudden commotion ahead, and the great houd shot up into the air and was on a level with the deck. One of the crew first sighted the strange creature and called Captain Crossman, and in a moment all on board but the man at the wheel were looking at the strange sight. They saw before them an enormous head, one mass of great bunches, through which the wicked looking eyes of the creature gleamed. They expected the whale, if such, would "blow," but it did not then or after. Once a narrow thread of what looked like steam shot up, but not a drop of water was sent into the air. As they looked at the creature it roared savagely, and then drew close np to the side of the sohooner, giving them ampie time to observe the head, and all agree that it was very broad ; that it tapered almost to a point, and that it was not very thick through the thiokest part. The creature was about 75 to 80 feet in length and had a very broad tail, very different froin that of an ordinary whale. In faot, at the time there were three or four whales in sight, and they had no difficulty in noting the points of difference between them and the stranger. The great creature went down head first and then made a series of attempts to strike the side of the sohooner with its teil. It did not succeed and swam around thern, roaring loudly, in evident anger. Then it went down and tmder the schooner. Captain Crossman, who had watched for this movement, gave orders to be ready to lower the boat, feariug that the whale might come up uuder them and break them in two. It was very fortúnate that thcy were not forced to lower their boat, as it proved later to be leaking and would not have carried half their nnmber safely to land. For more tbauan hour the whale continued its rernarkable acrobatic performance, standing on its head, with its tail waviug in the air most of the time. It seeraed bent on hitting the schooner, and it took the best of good seamanship to prevent an encounter. At last the whale seemed to get tired of what had been fun at first, and it headed for the westward. Captain Crossman is of the opinión that this strange whale runst have been mistaken for a sea serpent niany times. Seen bnt a short distauce off, the head would look more like that of a great serpsiit than of a whale. The creature, while making its long and repeated attempts tohit the schooner, continued its roaring when above water. It would scrape against the side of the schooner aud then would draw off, seeru to be calculating the distance, and Uien strike. The schooner was kept off at the right moment, and the creature missed the vessel very time. It was an odd experience, and for a time there was somethiug closely resembling a panic, the womeu beiug badly frighteued. Miss Houston said that the sight of that great ruass standing almost upright in inidoceau was scrnething not to be forgotten. Captain Crossman is uncertaiu v.-hother the whale is a natural fighter or whether it was frightened when it carne up out of the water, and as a result of its confusión made the repeated attempts to sink the schooner. One of the crew hit it with a bolt, and inany times Captain Crossman said he could have hit it with a board from the deck. He did not venture to do auything to further arouse its anger aud let it go in peace.-


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