Page:Devonshire Characters and Strange Events.djvu/292

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been validated.
232
DEVONSHIRE CHARACTERS

made Lundy one of his stations, and defied the efforts of several ships of war and smaller vessels called "whelps" to capture him.

In 1633, Sir Bernard Grenville reported to the Secretary of State that a great outrage had been committed by a Spanish man-of-war of Biscay, which had landed eighty men on the island of Lundy, where, after some small resistance, they had killed one man, called Mark Pollard, and bound the rest, and surprised and took the island, which they rifled and cleared of all the best provisions they could find, and then departed to sea again.

From the depositions of William Skynner, of Kilkhampton, dyer, and others, it appears that the Biscayner was a vessel of 150 tons with about 120, under a Captain Meggor, and that these pirates had previously robbed a French bark, and also a pinnace of George Rendall, which happened to be at Lundy, taking from him his money and all the provisions of his pinnace.

Capt. John Pennington, of the Vanguard, was commissioned to put down the pirates, and he appears to have proclaimed martial law on the island. In the year 1663, a Frenchman, Captain Pressoville, established himself on Lundy. In consequence of these events one Thomas Bushell was appointed governor of the island to hold it for the King.

Grose, in his Antiquities, gives a curious story of an occurrence during the reign of William and Mary. "A ship of force pretending to be a Dutchman, and driven into the roads by mistaking the channel, sent a boat ashore desiring some milk for their captain who was sick, which the unsuspecting inhabitants granted for several days. At length the crew informed them of their captain's death, and begged leave, if there were