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December storms – 1705

Boston News-Letter

Photo: Robert Stirrett
Photo: Robert Stirrett

Limerick, 7th December, 1705 (abridged)

On Thursday last about one in the morning, there was the most violent storm, and floods occasioned by it, that ever was known by any living, or ever heard of here.

It lasted till 9. The water rose so violently of a sudden, and to that height, that most of the cellars in the town were full of water, by which the Merchants, Vintners, Ale-sellers and other People suffered very much. The inhabitants of the suburbs of the town were forced to crawl naked from the inside to the tops of their cabins, whence some fell down being benumm’d and not able to hold longer.  God knows what the losses in the country are.

It’s certain all the cattle and corn in the low lands near the Shannon are lost, as well as the corn and rape in stack as that in ground. Many houses in town and country were untiled, and some blown down; two ships that lay at the Key, taking in their lading, and one empty were got on the top of the Key; two are got off, but the third, a Dutch Ship of 80 Tons, lyes now just at Key Gate.

They are taking out her goods and breaking down the Key, in hopes to get her off. I hear the Queen Ann of London of 400 Tuns, from Jamaica, with Sugar, Indigo, etc. is put ashore at a place called Glinn, about 11 Leagues down the River.  The Anna of Rotterdam, with Beef, Butter, Hides and Tallow, is driven ashore upon Fines Island, 8 Leagues down, and is 2 or 300 yards higher in the Fields than ever the Tide came before. It’s said the Queen Ann is not bulged but very far up, and buryed in the sand very deep. Our barge was bulged and sunk. The Watch-house and three other houses were blown down on the Key. Two of the garrison gates were blown to pieces.  The magazines and guardhouses were almost quite unflated and unglazed, and the sentry boxes broken to pieces.