The Deposition of William Bagge and George Nock - 26 August 1788
Transcribed by Gail M. Walczyk

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Deposition of William Bagge:

The deposition of William Bagge aged Twenty nine years & upwards being duly sworn on the holy evangelists of almighty god deposeth & saith --- That about the month of September in the year on which Lord Cornwallis was captured at Little York that he sailed in a vessel for the Chesapeake belonging as this deponent supposed to Captain Custis Kellam & sundry other persons who he did not know & commanded by captain William Whittenton Ewell bound for Cape Francois in Hyspaniola. --- That after being at Sea two or three days they had a stiff easterly wind & that the captain from motives of fear [-----] away & did not keep so much to windward as he might have don at that time the captain appeared to be very sick That after a short passage they came in sight of land & in two or three days afterwards came in sight of the east end of Cuba & run down it supposing it to be Hyspaniola, that after runing down till they thought they were far [-----] Cape Francois the saw a harbour which they took for it. That the entered the harbour & run up it a small distance that after lying in the harbour several days there came down a Guarda la Costa which informed them upon being asked by Captain Ewell, that they were a great way to leeward & also informed them where we were. That the captain of the Guarda la Costa bargained with Captain Ewell for his vessell & cargo which consisted of about twelve barrels of flour & about sixteen hogshead of Tobacco & some staves for which he recieved the money & discharged the hands. --- and this deponent further saith that he was shiped on board the aforesaid vessell which was called the Bravado by Capt. Custis Kellam --- That he understood that Captain Ewell had frequently commanded vessells before & that he knew him to make one voyage before as Captain of a vessel for Mr Edward Ker the present defendant & further saith that Captain Ewell told him (this Deponent) that he served his time out of Boston. --- & this deponent further saith not
Wm Bagge

The above deposition of William Bagge & George Nock were duly Taken & sworn to before us the subscribers in the presence of Both Plaintiff & defendant this 26th day of August 1788 at the house of Mrs Patience Robinson at Accomack Courthouse & sent sealed to the Clerk of Northampton
Wm. Williams
Jno Wise

Deposition of George Nock:

The deposition of George Nock aged thirty one years & upwards being duly sworn on the holy evangelists of almighty God deposeth & Saith. That at the time the French fleet lay in Chesapeak bay he was Shipped by George Turner to go a voyage to Cape Francois in a Schooner Called Aia or Adah commanded by Capt Wm Ewell & after being some days at sea & making the land several times on the Thirteenth day after leaving the Capes of Virginia the sd Schooner arrived at the Island of Cuba where she lay several days at which the whole crew were much alarm'd There being no Inhabitants nere that place as they were Inform'd by the crew of a Guardala Costa on board of which this deponent paddled the Captain of sd Schooner in The punt which belonged to her. This deponant further saith That When the sd Captain Ewell & himself arrive'd on board the said Guardala Costa The sd Captain Ewell asked the person who was Called Captain of the Guardala Costa if he was not to windward of Cape Francois at which the Captain & Crew of the Guardala Costa laughed very much & a little after ask'd sd Ewell if he would sell his vessell & Cargo, to which he reply'd he would if his hands were willing after which the sd deponant & Capt Ewell went on board the sd Schooner & he the said Ewell asked the sd George Turner & Wm Bag Mate if they were willing that the sd Schooner should be sold, to which They reply'd they were, upon which he sold the schooner for the sum of two thousand dollars, together with her cargo which consisted (as he was informed by the crew) of fourteen whole & two broken hogsheads of Tobacco, twelve barrels of flour & some staves. And the said Ewell did not consult with this deponent particularly, but that he informed sd Ewell that he was not willing the vessell should be sold --- And this deponent further saith that as well as he recollects the Crew of the Guardala Costa offered to assist them in getting their vessell out of the narrow place they had got into & out of which they could not beat the wind blowing constantly a head --- and this deponent saith also that while the vessel lay at Newport News on their passage out that the captain had every appearance of violent illness & so continued the quarter part of the voyage insomuch that he sometimes appeared dilirious & was not willing to go out but was over persuaded by the hands, but that before he got to Cuba he had got much better --- And this deponent also saith that he has heard of Captain Ewell having commanded a vessell before & also says that he heard Mr Edward Ker say that he was ap part owner of the afsd vessel & further this deponent saith not

George Nock


John Downing vs Arthur Downing Extrs, 1790-001.Local Government Records Collection, Northampton County Records. the Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia. Accessed 17 June, 2009.

© Copyright 2009 by Gail M. Walczyk