Captain Richard (Dick) Farrell (1897 -1993)
Second passage of Barque ‘Killoran’ bound from Santos in ballast to Wallaroo, South Australia
23rd March 1918 – Sunday
9 a.m. hove short, 10 a.m. weighed anchor and proceeded to sea in tow of the tug ‘Emperor’ we got cheered by two Danish ships coming out. At 11:30 we commenced to make sail, 12:30 tug let us go. There is a fine breeze blowing from the Eastward, we are braced up on the port tack and making six knots. We set watches at 4 p.m. Passed a Spanish barque ‘Viva Espana’ Position; Lat. 26 degs. 30’ S. Long. 46 degs. 23’ W. Course; S. by E. Distance –
24th March – Monday
Good fresh breeze blowing, the land is out of sight now we are getting a fine start. Rove off new main clew garnets, main topsail buntline and fore t’gallant downhauls also two new main lower t’gallant braces. Position; Lat. 29 degs. 04’ S. Long. 45 degs. 06’ W. Course; S. 18 degs. E. Distance 162 miles.
26th March – Tuesday
Nice fresh breeze, set fore and main royals, fine clear weather, crew putting everything in order lashing up gear etc. Position; Lat. 30 degs. 49’ S. Long. 43 degs. 19’ W. Course S. 41 degs. E. Distance 140 miles.
27th March – Wednesday
Moderate breeze fine clear weather, raining slightly during the middle watch. We are sweeping down in the hold getting the coal dust off the sides and beams. Positon; Lat. 31 degs. 57’ S. Long. 40 degs. 29’ W. Course S. 65 degs. E. Distance 162 miles.
28th March – Thursday
Fresh breeze blowing, moderate sea. Nice clear weather getting a bit cooler every day. Still down in the hold working. Position; Lat. 32 degs. 57’ S. Long. 36 degs. 30’ W. Course; S. 73 degs. E. Distance 210 miles.
29th March – Friday
Wind much the same force but has hauled a point to Norrard, checked the yards in off the backstays. This is Good Friday and a holiday, no work doing except working ship. It was raining heavily at night. Position Lat. 34 degs. 10’ S. Long. 33 degs. 04’ W. Course; S. 67 degs. E. Distance 186 miles.
30th March – Saturday
Light variable airs all day, this is the first day of light winds, raining now and again. Watch employed in cleaning holds and washing decks. Took in fore and main royals and set fore and afters as she is braced up on the starboard tack now. Position; Lat. 34 degs. 36’ S. Long. 33 degs. 07’ W. Course; S. 9 degs. W. Distance 21 miles.
31st March – Sunday
Fine weather fresh breeze doing well today. Crew doing no work today. Wore ship to Eastward at 4 p.m. Position; Lat. 33 degs. 46’ S. Long. 31 degs. 11’ W. Course; N. 72 degs. E. Distance 101 miles.
1st April – Monday
All Fools Day. Good fresh breeze but the wind fell light towards night. We have a little drizzly rain with the S.W. wind. Crew chipping in the fore between decks. Position; Lat. 33 degs. 40’ S. Long. 29 degs. 30’ W. Course; N. 86 degs. E. Distance 84 miles.
2nd April – Tuesday
Nice clear day, moderate wind and sea. Rove two new fore lower and upper t’gallant braces both sides and one new fore lower topsail sheet lanyards and put a new buntline block on the main upper t’gallant yard, set two upper t’gallant sails and main topmast staysail. Wore ship at 4 p.m. to S. W. Position; Lat. 34 degs. 35’ S. Long. 28 degs. 35’ W. Course; S. 40 degs. E. Distance 72 miles.
3rd April – Wednesday
Fresh breeze, overcast sky, wind increasing, furled two upper t’gallants and fore lower t’gallants also main topmast staysail. Chipping tween decks still. Position; Lat. 36 degs. 35’ S. Long. 24 degs. 51’ W. Course; S. 56 ½ degs. E. Distance 217 miles.
4th April – Thursday
Fresh breeze, set fore lower and main upper t’gallants shifted main upper and fore lower topsails also fore topmast staysail. At 4 a.m. we got caught by the lee wind shifting to the S. W. and commenced to blow like hell, let go everything as she lay right down in the water, being in ballast. Stripped her down to lower topsails and staysails. It eased down towards morning. Position; Lat. 37 degs. 05’ S. Long. 22 degs. 40’ W. Course; S. 76 degs. E. Distance 123 miles.
5th April – Friday
Wind has decreased a lot, there is not very much sea. Set foresail and main upper topsail. The wind is still gusty and weather dull. Took cables in and plugged up hawse pipes. Mates watch took in anchors. Position; Lat. 36 degs. 53’ S. Long. 22 degs. 21’ W. Course; S. 49 degs. E. Distance 20 miles.
6th April – Saturday
Light breeze, fine clear weather again. Set upper t’gallant sail. Crew chipping hold and washing down. Half-holiday today. Position; Lat. 37 degs. 01’ S. Long. 21 degs. 35’ W. Course; S. 77 degs. E. Distance 38 miles.
7th April – Sunday
Fresh increasing breeze, overcast sky, drizzly rain. Furled two upper and fore lower t’gallants. Wore ship to Southward 8 a.m. Position; Lat. 36 degs. 14’ S. Long. 20 degs. 14’ W. Course; N. 54 degs. E. Distance 80 miles.
8th April – Monday
Strong increasing wind, sky dull, sea rising steadily furled main lower t’gallants. Towards midnight wind increased to whole gale, furled everything except lower topsails and fore topmast staysail. Barometer falling steadily. 29.88 at 3 a.m. Position; Lat. 37 degs. 44’ S. Long. 17 degs. 47’ W. Course; S. 50 degs. E. Distance 152 miles.
9th April – Tuesday
Strong increasing wind, high sea running, ship rolling heavily, furled main lower t’gallants upper topsails and foresail. Towards midnight wind increased to a hard gale, which increased towards 4 a.m. when we hove her to. There were terrific squalls every now and again which threw the ship on her beam ends, the ballast shifting to leeward. The seas were running mountains high and as we were in danger of turning right over we had to get down and trim the ballast but we could not get her upright as the ballast is too soft and it runs back again. All hands on deck all night. One terrific squall towards morning hove her right down and I think the only thing that saved us was the fore topsail blowing away, I thought the foremast had come down as it was too dark to see and the din was awful. There was vivid lightning now and again and one blinding flash showed us the topsail in ribbons. Towards 8 a.m. the gale moderated a little which we were damned thankful fore, there was no breakfast for us, just a cup of coffee and biscuits and cold meat. I hope I shall never have to put in a night like last again. It was touch and go with us, it was surprising how she kept from going over, sometimes she would shudder from stem to stern and you could feel her being thrown bodily to leeward by a great big sea. Position; Lat. 38 degs. 39’ S. Long. 18 degs. 15’ W. Course; S. 66 degs. E. Distance 126 miles.
10th April – Wednesday
Still blowing hard, we got the ballast a bit better today, there is a tremendous sea running still. We bent a new fore lower topsail with all hands, it took us a good while as she was lurching very heavily and it was a brand new cotton canvas sail. The weather is getting much colder now. Position; Lat. 38 degs. 50’ S. Long. 13 degs. 45’ W. Course; S. 81 degs. E. Distance 71 miles.
11th April – Thursday
Strong breeze blowing, sky overcast. Set the foresail tremendous sea running and heavy squalls. Wind increased towards evening, furled foresail again. The ballast is more secure now as we have trimmed it off. Position; Lat. 39 degs. 22’ S. Long. 11 degs. 16’ W. Course; S. 75 degs. E. Distance 121 miles.
12th April – Friday
Strong steady breeze blowing passing clouds, set topsails and foresail, mizzen and main topmast and fore t’mast staysail. Wind and sea decreasing. Shifted main lower t’gallants. Barometer 30.22 noon. Position; Lat. 39 degs. 31’ S. Long. 8 degs. 58’ W. Course; S. 85 degs. E. Distance 107 miles.
13th April – Saturday
Wind and sea increasing again. Ship rolling violently. Dull weather, furled upper topsails and main lower t’gallants. Strong gale blowing before morning. Barometer 29.94 at noon. Position; Long. 40 degs. 14’ W. Lat. 40 degs. 43’ S. Course; S. 72 degs. E. Distance 228 miles.
14th April – Sunday
Strong breeze moderating towards evening. Set upper topsails and lower t’gallants. Starboard main t’mst cap backstay carried away, secured same temporarily. Position; Lat. 41 degs. 04’ S. Long. 00 degs 18’ W. Course; S. 83 degs. E. Distance 181 miles.
15th April – Monday
Wind and sea increasing, dull weather, heavy overcast sky. Furled main upper and lower t’gallants. Sent down cap backstay and sent up a new mooring wire until the other is fixed. Starting splicing a new eye in. Position; Lat. 42 degs. 03’ S. Long. 5 degs. 7’ E. Course; S. 75 degs. E. Distance 226 miles.
16th April – Tuesday
Fresh breeze squally weather with passing showers of rain, very cold weather. Barometer 29.60 at noon. Crews employed in chipping and painting hold out. Position; Lat. 42 degs. 43’ E. Long. 9 degs. 18’ E. Course; 78 degs. E. Distance 185 miles.
17th April – Wednesday
Strong breeze high seas, heavy sleet squalls with fine intervals. Furled main lower t’gallants, sent up the cap backstay and set it taut. Wind hauled to the Southward, towards evening set fore t’mast and mizzen staysails. Position; Lat. 43 degs. 18’ S. Long. 13 degs. 54’ E. Course; E. Distance 200 miles.
18th April - Thursday
Wind and sea has moderated a great deal today. Set upper t’gallants but in the evening it increased so much that we had to take in the two uppers again. Barometer falling rapidly 29.35 at noon.
Position; Lat. 43 degs. 47’ S. Long. 17 degs. 22’ E. Course; S 79 degs. E. Distance 152 miles.
19th April – Friday
Rotten looking weather, thick rain nearly all day. Wind shifted to N. W. but came back to West again. Strong wind with a steadily increasing sea and a falling glass down to 29.18 at 6 p.m. Took in the lower t’gallants and fore upper topsail. Yards are dead square. Position; Lat. 45 degs. 34’ S. Long. 22 degs. 22’ E. Course; S. 63 degs. E. Distance 200 miles.
20th April – Saturday
Fresh steady breeze, set all plain sail, overcast sky. Took in fore and main royals at night. Washed down deck, half holiday. Position; Lat. 45 degs. 33’ S. Long. 28 degs. 15’ E. Course; S. 89 degs. E. Distance 250 miles.
21st April – Sunday
Fresh breeze, weather came on very thick, fog horn was sounded all night. Barometer 29.80 at noon. Position; Lat. 45 degs. 07’ S. Long. 30 degs. 01’ E. by dead reckoning Course S. 83 degs. E. Distance 211 miles.
22nd April – Monday
Strong breeze, misty damp weather, drizzly rain all night long. Wind fell light at 2 a.m. and shifted right round to the Southward, braced her up on starboard tack. The Southerly wind cleared away all the rain but it is much colder. The crew are painting out the t’ween decks now, we have started to heave the log every two hours, four bells and eight bells. Position; Lat. 44 degs. 49’ S. Long. 35 degs. 53’ E. Course; N. 82 degs. E. Distance 123 miles.
23rd April – Tuesday
Moderate breeze dry clear cold weather. We bent and set the mainsail today. Furled upper t’gallants as they are making her lean over too much, being a bit lame on the starboard side. Painting hold out today. Barometer 30.04 noon. Position; Lat. 42 degs. 57’ S. Long. 37 degs. 13’ E. Course; N. 55 degs. E. Distance 144 miles.
24th April – Wednesday
Moderate breeze, and sea wind is hauling round to the North East. We wore ship at 8 p.m. not so cold today. Set both upper t’gallants as she is coming up. Crew painting out hold. Barometer 29.21 inches at noon. Position; Lat. 43 degs. 00’ S. Long. 40 degs. 39’ E. Course; S. 88 degs. E. Distance 63 miles.
25th April – Thursday
Fresh breeze, furled upper t’gallants. We had slight rain at night but it did not last long. Painting out holds. Barometer 29.98 at noon. Position; 43 degs. 24’ S. Long. 45 degs. 10’ E. Course; S. 85 degs. E. Distance 172
26th April – Friday
Fresh breeze, which died away in the middle watch to a light breeze. Raining heavily for a few hours but cleared up as the wind came from the South-West. Set the main upper t’gallants. Barometer 30.03 at noon. Position; Lat. 43 degs. 06’ S. Long. 48 degs. 02’ E. Course; N. 82 degs. E. Distance 127 miles.
27th April – Saturday
Gentle breeze, set main royal, wind holding South-West steady, fine clear weather. Big westerly swell. Working in the hold all day today. Barometer 29.94 Position; Lat. 43 degs. 13’ S. Long. 50 degs. 40’ E. Course; S. 86 degs. E. Distance 116 miles.
28th April – Sunday
Gentle breeze all day, big swell running. Commenced to rain at night, wind hauled round to the South-West in the middle watch, clearing away all the rain and mist, wind freshening rapidly. Barometer; 29.52. Position; Lat. 42 degs. 22’ S. Long. 55 degs. 49’ E. Course; S. 84 degs. E. Distance 164 miles.
29th April – Monday
Fresh breeze, dull weather, sea commencing to rise. Wind increased towards evening, furled fore and main royals fore upper t’gallants and main sails. Barometer 29.53 at noon. Position; Lat. 44 degs. 01’ S. Long. 60 degs. 53’ E. Course; S. 80 E. Distance 222 miles.
30th April – Tuesday
Strong breeze with heavy South Westerly sleet squalls. Towards morning the weather changed, wind decreased with no squalls, set mainsail and royals. Started painting the beams in the hold. The sea is moderate and the weather very cold, we had heavy snow showers today. Barometer 29.68 Position; Lat. 43 degs. 16’ S. Long. 64 degs. 22’ E. Course; N. 89 degs. E. Distance 166 miles.
1st May – Wednesday
Strong increasing breeze. Wind due Westerly, furled mainsail, fore royals and upper t’gallants, jibs and staysails. Doing eleven by log. Big westerly swell running, very cloudy sky. Barometer 29.60 Position; Lat. 43. Degs. 02’ S. Long. 68 degs. 53’ E. Course; S. 89 degs. E. Distance 220 miles.
2nd May – Thursday
Strong breeze which increased to a hard gale towards midnight with very heavy squalls, furled four t’gallants, main royal and fore upper topsail. She ran all night under a main upper topsail, had a lee helmsman all night as a tremendous sea was running. Barometer 29.56 Position; Lat. 42 degs. 41’ S. Long. 73 degs. 41’ E. Course; N. 84 degs. E. Distance 213 miles.
3rd May – Friday
Wind taking off a little, strong squalls coming up at short intervals, tremendous sea running. We have been working aloft all day today reeving off new buntlines and a new main t’gallant clewlines. Wind has gone out a couple of points to the Southward. Set upper topsail and main lower gallants also two staysails. Barometer 29.86 inches. Position; Lat. 42 degs. 47’ S. Long. 78 degs. 09’ E. Course; S. 85 degs. E. Distance 197 miles.
4th May – Saturday
Good strong steady breeze, sea going down a little, furled fore topsail and main lower t’gallants as the aneroid is falling rapidly and the general appearance of the weather is not very good. This is coal day for the cook, we rove new starboard upper topsail braces, main topsail buntline and two new fore lower t’gallant buntlines. Barometer 29.48 at noon. Position; Lat. 43 degs. 11’ S. Long. 83 degs. 33’ E. Course; S. 82 degs. E. Distance 220 miles.
5th May - Sunday
Strong breeze hauling to S.W. sea moderating a little furled main upper topsail in the morning, weather turned squally towards night, some of the squalls were very heavy. Barometer 29.40. Position; Lat. 43 degs. 09’ S. Long. 88 degs. 46’ E. Course; N. 89 degs. E. Distance 210 miles.
6th May – Monday
Strong gusty breeze with hard squalls now and again, ship rolling very heavily. Set main upper topsail. The main t’mast cap backstay has carried away again, a link of the chain strop opened out, so we are making a wire one. Rove new main royal buntlines and fore t’gallant buntlines also new starboard upper topsail braces. Barometer 29.70 at noon. Position; Lat. 42 degs. 40’ S. Long. 92 degs. 41’ E. Course; N. 84 degs. E. Distance 173 miles.
7th May – Tuesday
Fresh breeze, the sea and squalls are decreasing. We had one heavy sleet squall at 6 a.m. it is very cold now but pretty dry. Set the fore upper topsail and mizzen staysails. We unbent the fore lower t’gallant sail today, heavy showers of sleet all day, it is very cold too, especially up aloft. Barometer 29.33 inches. Position; Lat. 42 degs. 19’ S. Long. 97 degs. 31’ E. Course; N. 84 degs. E.Distance 213 miles.
8th May – Wednesday
Strong breeze, heavy rain squalls now and again. Towards evening it cleared up, both wind and sea moderated so we set the lower t’gallants but furled the fore in the dog watch as the wind hauled further aft. There is a high sea running still and the ship is rolling violently. Barometer 29.35. inches at noon. Position; Lat. 41. Degs. 48’ S. Long. 101 degs. 11’ E. Course; N. 78 degs. E. Distance 171 miles.
9th May – Thursday
Strong breeze, some pretty stiff squalls passed over now and again with sleet, weather is clear between the squalls but very cold. We started in the hold again today. Barometer falling gradually 29.27 today. Position; Lat. 41. Degs. 33’ S. Long. 105 degs. 34’ E. Course; N. 86 degs. E. Distance 197 miles.
10th May – Friday
Aneroid is still falling 28.78 today. We shortened down to two lower topsails, expecting a blow. Sure enough at 2 a.m. my watch on deck, it came up astern black as pitch with chain lightning now and again and it struck us with terrific force, there was heavy hailstones with it and it was as cold as ice. It blew a hard gale all day, at 4:30 a.m. she broached to and before they could get her off with the head yards and main topsail blew away and we had to go up and make the rags fast, it was cold too, we did not get below until 6 a.m. She ran pretty well under a fore lower topsail with the sheet slacked off a little, fore t’mast staysail also blew way. There is a terrific sea running mountains high, we unbent the frame of the main lower topsail this morning. At about 3:30 a.m. it was black as pitch and on looking aloft we saw S. Elmo’s lights, like tiny electric lamps on the three mast heads, four royal yardarms, eight t’gallant yardarms and the gaff end. It was a fine sight as the darkness showed them up, but they only lasted for a minute or so. Position; Lat. 42 degs. 22’ S. Long. 110 degs. 48’ E. Course; N. 74 degs. E. Distance 180 miles.
11th May – Saturday
Wind blowing strong yet, with terrific hail squalls, we bent a brand new main lower topsail with all hands at 4 p.m. we got caught in a hail squall up aloft, it was cold, tremendous sea running heavily. Towards morning the wind moderated and we set the main lower and upper topsails and foresail. Barometer 29.09 at noon. Position; Lat. 41 degs. 35’ S. Long. 114 degs. 42’ E. Course; N. 75 degs. E. Distance 175 miles.
12th May – Sunday
Strong gusty breeze, wind is hauling to the Westward, fine clear weather with a heavy sea running, bent a new fore t’mast staysail. Barometer 29.05’ Position; Long. 119 degs. 29’ E. Lat. 40 degs. 12’ S. Course; N. 69 degs. E. Distance; 232 miles.
13th May – Monday
Weather turning squally, with heavy showers of hail. Main upper topsail sheets carried away in a squall, but the sail did not go, we rove new ones in the dog watch. Very high sea running still. In the morning we set the main lower t’gallant as the wind and sea has moderated a great deal. Barometer 29.44’ Position; Lat. 37 degs. 40’ S. Long. 122 degs. 44’ E. Course; N. 65 degs. E. Distance 196 miles.
14th May – Tuesday
Fresh breeze with an occasional light squall. There is a heavy S.W. swell running still. Set the fore upper topsail as the wind has come further out on the starboard quarter. Barometer 29.90 noon Postion; Lat. 37 degs. 11’ S. Long. 126 degs. 47’ E. Course N. 82 degs. E. Distance 208 miles.
15th May – Wednesday
Moderate quarterly breeze, weather fine and clear and getting warmer. My watch shackled on both cables and rove the fish tackle. We are clearing up the lower hold now. Set spanker mizzen staysail inner jib and main royal. Barometer 30.10 at noon. Position; Lat. 37 degs. 15’ S. Long. 130 degs. 23’ E. Course; S. 89 degs. E. Distance 174 miles.
16th May – Thursday
Light breeze all sail set, wind backing to N. W. The mate’s watch put the anchors out this morning, we started to wash the paintwork on the poop and bridge. Weather fine and clear and getting much warmer. Barometer 30.11 Position; Lat. 36 degs. 54’ S. Long. 132 degs. 46’ E. Course; N. 75 degs. E. Distance 118 miles.
17th May – Friday
Moderate breeze, all plain sail on her. Washing paint work on the main deck today. Set mainsail, expecting to make land tomorrow.
18th May – Saturday
Steady moderate breeze, everything on her, wind abeam. Sighted Cape Couedie at 5:30 a.m. and Cape Boarda Light at 7:30 a.m. We then braced her upon the port tack, came abreast of Althorpe Island at 1:30 p.m. but as wind hauled ahead we had to wear her as she would not weather the reef. We then stood away on the starboard tack for Kangaroo Island again and when within 300 yards of it, tacked her, she stayed alright and weathered Althorpe Island coming back. Sighted Corney Point Light at about 10 p.m. and Wardang Island Light at 5 a.m. Not very much wind.
19th May – Sunday
Lovely day, water as smooth as a mill pond, light breeze blowing. We sighted Tipara Reef Light at about 12 noon and came abreast of it at 3 p.m. There is a ship in Wallaroo Bay which is in sight. We got up to the jetty, under topsails at 4:30 p.m. when about 100 yards off, we backed our main yards and rounded too letting go the anchor with 5 fathoms shackle in the water. The other ship proved to be our old friend the Birkdale from Santos, she only arrived this morning, we beat her by seven days as she left eight days before us.