Pat Shingleton for Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Nine ships carrying 500 colonists from England to Virginia experienced a hurricane near Bermuda on this date in 1609. As noted in a previous column, seven ships made it to Jamestown, but the flagship, Sea Venture, didn’t and was lost, with the Virginia governor, Sir Thomas Gates, onboard. Colonists accepted the tragedy and set about the work of building their new home. Surprisingly, on May 23, 1610, passengers of the Sea Venture arrived in Jamestown on two small light boats, or pinnaces. Their ship ran aground near Bermuda whereby sailors referred to it as the “Ile of Divels” and stayed there for nine months while building the two small ships. In 1611, an English playwright read an account of the miraculous shipwreck incorporating it into his last complete play, “The Tempest.” Fastcast: Sticky.