JJ Rowe Diary: 14 Feb 1889


This is the fourth day of travel en route by ship from Gibraltar to India. Joseph paints a picture of life aboard the troopship with details of bathing, meals, safety drills, and entertainment.

The Diary Entry


A bright morning, not so rough. Slept till six thirty. Got up, roll up my hammock & cleaned my boots & had a wash, which is a very hard thing to get on a Trooper, especially in fresh water as I had this morning.

Went in to see Pollie, she was up, & in wash-house, washing baby.

Sickness gone, had a got breakfast which both of us enjoyed, off ham, as we where thoughtful enough to bring a whole ham with us, which I cooked in the cook-house, & a whole Dutch cheese & some braion thanks to Pollies economy in house keeping.

On watch again today, from 8 am to pm. Not in charge of the watch today. A Senior one, of A Co be on who ought to have been there the other night but was doing a loaf out of it.

Had a good dinner which we both enjoyed. Saw a good bit of land, & rocks. Past a rock nearly like Gibr called Geliter or some like that, perhaps I have not spelt it right.

The fire bell rung about 5 pm & every man had to stand perfect still where he is till the Marine with their rifle & 10 rounds of ammunition to keep the gang ways clear. Then the assemble sounded & the Regt all fell in by Companys on the deck & then the Officers of the Ship, look round to see that every man is in his place, & the disperse sound & we all fall out again, it is always practised on board a Ship, so that in case of fire on a Ship, there may be no confusion.

Had a good supper consist of bread & cheese, & onions, which Pollie brought in the box. Pollie went to bed, and I went on deck to silent. to the string band which consist of a Spanish guitar, a fiddle, a banjo & a few other instruments, & went to bed at 8.30 pm.

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