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He Proved The Omen

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"Speaking of sailors' superstitions, " reruarked the veteran lighthonse keeper Josh Reeves of Sea Isle City, "reminds ine of an incident that happened half a century ago off the Five Fathom Bank lightship, in.which a sailor's prediction, hased on an omen, resulted fatally to the prophet himself. "Abright winter inorning had caused the crew of the lightship to row a short distance away in a sruall boat in search of codfish, which are very abundant off the capes in winter time. A few hours' fishing resulted in a goodly catch and a return was made to the lightship. The fish were cleaued and the refuse throwu overboard, but a calm sea, with not a breath of air to disturb it, caused tbe refuse to drift in a circle around tbe Bhip. Toward noon a large flock of geese came in sight and settled under the lightship's very bows and comraenced to f eed. The waterfowl became very tanie and swam chattering and hissing close to the ship's sides. "Josh Crowell, a grizzled old member of the crew, shook his head and predicted death to some oneon board within 24 houra. He said that whenever geese became so tame as to feed around a vessel's bow or stern, it was an unfailing omen of impending death on board. Crowell's companions laughed at his fear, but he told them to bide their time. "Toward noon a strong gale came out of the nor'east and kicked up a heavy sea. Crowell was on the forward or bow watch. "Many of the crew were in the main cabin below enjoying a social game of eucbre, checkers or dóminos, when euddenlythey heard the sound of achain running rapidly through the starboard bow scuppers. We rushed on deck in dismay, thinking the windlass gearing had given way. The sight witnessed will never be forgotten. Crowell had been caught in the relief chain and ground around the rapidly revolving wiudlass. His death was instant. His omen carne trae. "-


Ann Arbor Argus
Old News