Sunday, September 30

Sailors Wanted!

Sailors Wanted for His Majesty's Ship Acasta!
The Acasta is looking for quality reenactors to portray English sailors circa 1800-1812

Our organization seeks to educate via a series of first person activities designed to demonstrate the real lives of sailors as they go about their business etc. Landing Parties, Surveying Crews, Recruitment Drives, Press Gangs, Shore Leave... these are but a few of the activities that our crew will undertake whilst encamped at an event.

First, be sure to read the Clothing guidelines for Acasta Sailors.

Then check out our Philosophy:

If these sound like a good fit for you, then you may have what it takes to be an Acasta! Email Albert Roberts today to find out more about joining the crew at:
Want some cheater's hints at how to get in good with the officers? 

Here's what we're looking for in new members. Someone who is motivated to learn and share their knowledge, someone who knows about the position that they're portraying, someone who can act in the manner befitting the station that they portray. First-person and acting skills (no 'Monty Python' accents need apply). And don't forget to salute!

Here's a listing of available billets [open in RED]:
Commissioned Officers:
Post Capt. - Robert Fryman
1st Lieutenant - James Hamilton
2rd Lieutenant - Michael Ramsay
3rd Lieutenant - Thomas Tumbusch
Lieutenant of Marines - Lawrence May (?)

Warrant Sea Officers:
Master - Lance Minnis
Boatswain - Open
Gunner - Walter Dubbeld
Surgeon - Albert Roberts

Inferior Warrant Officers:
Cooks (1) - Open
Surgeon's Mates (2) - Open
Master-at-Arms - Open

Petty Officers:
Midshipman (4) - David. Raley (3) Open
Steward - Open
Master's Mate - Open
Capt's Clerk (Secretary) - Brian Cushing
Carpenter's Mate - Open
4-Quarter Gunners (Req. Certification)- Open
Coxswain - Houston Hamilton

Idlers:
Steward's Mate - Open

Seaman Ratings: (at present there are no set number of participants per rating)
Landsman - Open (this category is for individuals who are "probationary members")
Ordinary. Seaman - Open
Able Body Seaman - Open

Servants and Boys
Servants (2) - Open
Boy (2) ~ 3rd class - 2 Open

Marine Privates
17 - Open

Drummer:
Drummers (1) - Open
 

Friday, September 28

Thursday, September 27

Tuesday, September 25

A Report from the Field 9

It was not long after this that the final piece of the puzzle fell into place in my mind. This occurred a little further up Medicinal Spring Road when I noticed Mrs. Cooper walking with two women, one of whom was the unknown woman in the Blue Dress and Purple Turban mentioned to us by Mr. Kelly!

This was the link I needed. Mrs. Cooper was the connection between the woman in Blue with Miss Waterman. I was more certain than ever that the woman in Blue had the packet in her possession, I glanced at the bulge in her reticule, it was the perfect size to be the packet. 

I found Capt. Freymann again and told him of my suspicions and respectfully suggested that we assemble all the Acastas to make the arrest. We did that very thing and less than a quarter of an hour we were all gather'd and approached en masse as she took her ease at the Hickory Tavern atop the hill.

Capt. Freymann greeted the woman and asked that he might have a look in her reticule. She submitted to his request. I watched eagerly, knowing that Capt. Freymann would, any moment pluck our victory from her little bag.

Capt. Freymann sorts through the reticule.
But that moment of triumph did not come. Capt. Freymann's face fell as he searched. The reticule bore no packet!

I sort through the reticule, the Acastas assembled looking none too impressed.
The Captain passed the reticule down the table to me to have a look through, and I too found nothing!

I stood there for a long moment with the eyes of all the Acastas upon me. The failure of our mission seemed imminent and my heart dropped. I was CERTAIN that she was the American Spy, I looked at her and tried to discern where else the packet could possibly be? 

I stood at the end of the table and it occurred to me. 

I wonder madam if we might have a look underneath your great bonnet, asked I?

She took off her bonnet and there it was! She removed the packet from beneath the large headpiece.

Capt. Freymann gets the packet from the American Spy!
Back at the Acasta camp later that afternoon, Capt. Freymann burned the documents that had been contained within the packet to ensure that they could not be recaptured. He then sorted through the money from the packet and divided it up in the same manner as the Admiralty splits up prize money, and gave each man his share.

The Acastas spent our final hours in New Boston before breaking camp with full pockets and glad spirits that we had accomplished our mission for King and Country.

It is now back overland and a rendezvous with the Acasta for our merry band.

Monday, September 24

A Report from the Field 8

With Mssr. de Villeverte at his tent.
On Sunday, I had a strong inclination to search the French Lace Merchant, Monsieur LeFarceur de Villeverte, the Acasta Ship's Clerk Mr. Cushing and later that day Miss K. Nowack a particular friend to Miss Waterman.

I made my way to Monsieur de Villeverte's lavish tent and discussed with him the trouble with the lost packet. He gave me his word as a gentleman that he had neither seen or received such a packet.
Searching Mr. Cushing's things.
Later that morning I took up the Bosun's mate, Mr. Alexander, and detained Mr. Cushing. I searched his market wallet thoroughly to no avail. But there was something suspicious in his manner that did not signify. It was a knowing look in his eye whilst I went through his things that I did not care for.

That Afternoon I was walking along Dudery Street with Captain Freymann and his Lady when we spotted Miss Waterman shopping with Miss Nowack. Miss Nowack had a small basket under her arm that I took notice of, and as they stopped to talk with us, I pressed her to allow me to search it. Another dead end, her basket contained nothing of value to us.

I was beginning to lose hope that we would discover the American Spy.

In an effort to make certain that I had covered every inch of ground, I had another talk with Mr. Kelly, the Indian Agent who had followed Miss Waterman to begin with. We discussed again the route she had traveled while delivering the packet. I asked them if, at any time, Miss Waterman had been out of their sight? Mr. Kelly informed me that they had stayed close to her the entire time, save when she went behind the Black Horse Tavern on Medicinal Springs Road.

Behind the Tavern? I had not understood this to be the case originally. And I pressed Mr. Kelly,  had he lost sight of her behind the canvas of the Tavern for a few moments? Yes, for a minute or so said he. 

Was she back there long enough to pass off the packet do you suppose? inquired I.

He and his wife both agreed that she might have had enough time to drop off the packet to someone. And that when she made her exit, the unknown woman with the Blue Dress and Purple Turban exited shortly thereafter.

I thanked Mr. Kelly and once again fetched after Mr. Alexander and bade him bring his musket along. We arrived in good time at the Black Horse which was busy with the usual fair-going crowd. Mr. Alexander and I made our way through the canvas behind the tavern itself and found ourselves in a space I was unaware existed. There was a great area sectioned off from the eyes of the publick by tall walls of canvas.

We looked around for a moment before we were approached by a slender, bearded fellow in an apron who was smoking a little cigarillo, he desired to know if he might help us.

I asked him if he had seen a lovely young lady there the other morning in a white dress with a green spencer. I went on to explain that she had 'lost' something there the morning before. Mr. Alexander caught my eye at this and smiled slightly.

The Tavern man was very eager to be helpful after that, and insisted that he HAD seen such a young lady, and even went on to comment on how lovely she was. She had come in, stood about for a bit, then left to the best of his knowledge.

Did she perchance make use of the facilities, asked I, pointing to the large 'necessary' behind me.

He insisted she did not.

Was there anyone else there with her, continued I?

The Tavern man said that he could not recall there being anyone, but that he had not been there with her the entire time. I thanked the fellow and exited via the canvas as he insisted he'd be on the lookout for the 'lost' packet for us.

Friday, September 21

Dear Reader...

Greetings Acasta Log readers,

No small feat!
A few words about some 'mechanical' developments that have to do with this very log. Most recently, we are very proud to announce that our modest efforts have garnered 10,000 views.

The Acasta's 'CREW' page has gained a few new images to replace several temporary images... and we have added a THIRD Lieutenant in the person of our friend Mr. Tom Tumbusch. I am certain he will make a fine addition to our happy crew.

Additionally, the log here has gotten a new address... we are now www.hmsacasta.com, much easier to remember than the old address. Please make a note of it.

If you enjoy reading the adventures of the HMS Acasta, I should like to request that you do two things.

First, be certain to become an honorary member of the crew. This is a simple way to show us that you're out there and paying attention. It is a simple matter really, there is a blue button along the right side of this very page that will allow you to join.

And Second, I would ask that you comment from time to time on the posts that interest you the most. This is an excellent way to let the crew of the Acasta know what you, the reader, is the most interested in seeing. It is always most gratifying to know what the readers like. 

Thanks for reading, ENJOY!

Thursday, September 20

A Report from the Field 7

Saturday evening in the Acasta camp was very pleasant. There was a good deal of Port and Madera supplied by Lt. Hamilton and even a little singing done by the lot. I discovered that Mr. Midshipman Raley has a fine voice, but because of the moisture in the air from the recent downpours, his drum would scarcely make any noise at all. 
The fair was reopened on Sunday morning with another flourish of pomp and circumstance, but this morning would be very different. The search for the missing packet and the American Spy would have to be temporarily postponed I had decided, after a great deal of thought, that I would propose to Miss Waterman. 

My fondness and friendship for her over these past two years has grown into the most magnificent sort of love. Mine is a love unlike any I have previously experienced, and nothing else would do. 

You may see the fruit of my labour below: 


There was a great deal of weeping, and I was so nervous that I scarcely recall what was said... but I do recall that I garnered her consent through her tears. I could bear the loss of the Packet and its secret documents if I could keep the woman I love by my side. 
Special thanks to everyone who helped me through the planning stages of this and helped to make it a fantastically special day!

Wednesday, September 19

Acasta takes the Melantho - 200th

On 17th Sept. (1812), The Acasta assisted by Spartan, Statira, Nymphe, Orpheus, Maidstone, Aeolus and Emulous captured the Melantho, a ship of 402 tons attempting to make her way into Baltimore from Chile. She was laden with 229 tons of copper, 9 bales of furs and heard one of the Melantho's sailors mention that it was all worth $43,000 in American currency, but have no idea what that translates into in British coin.  This might have made for some excellent prize money had it not been for the fact that we shared the capture with so many other of His Majesty's vessels. The Melantho's Master was a fellow by the name of William Davidson, who seemed none too pleased about his ship being taken by our force.

If I recall my Homer correctly, Melantho was also the sharp tongued sister to Melanthios, and a particularly unpleasant servant to Odysseus. 

The blockade continues.



Source: "AMERICAN VESSELS CAPTURED BY THE BRITISH DURING THE Revolution and War of 1812 The Records of the Vice-Admiralty Court at Halifax, Nova Scotia."

Tuesday, September 18

Acasta Shore Duty

Considering that the majority of the current Acastas were AT this event in 2012, it seemed like a natural choice to go ahead and make it an OFFICIAL Acasta event. No chasing spies, no colored boxes or difficult missions. Shore Duty at the 6th Annual Jane Austen Festival in 2013 will be an opportunity for the Acastas to show what Royal Navy Officers and Sailors did whilst ashore. We will be tending not only to (very) light Navy business, but also to games and leisure activities enjoyed aboard ship and on land.

For more information about this fantastic event, be sure to visit the JASNA Louisville website:

Monday, September 17

A Report from the Field 6

We received word that the fashionable and well-bred ladies were to have an archery competition at the bottom of the hill near the woods. The Acastas in camp decided that such a spectacle was not to be missed. I took a piece of unused canvas from camp to recline on, and Lt Hamilton took a fine ladderback chair. Mr. Raley joined us as well. We positioned ourselves on the slope just above the target and relaxed with our coats off. I even took my great spy glass so as to better see the positioning of each fired arrow in the target.
Taking our ease atop the hill was not quite the difficult duty I had initially envisioned when given this assignment, but the taking of the territory by Brock and the dispersal of the local militia certainly served to make New Boston a more friendly to the British forces.

While the ladies partook in the archery, I was able to espy Mr. Tumbusch from afar through my spyglass while he stood with the participants under a great tree. He carried on his shoulder a large market-wallet that could have contained the packet in it, and I had seen him in possession of a basket with shoulder straps earlier that could have served that same purpose.

We decided it was time to secure Mr Tumbusch for questioning. We took him up from the group and returned him to our camp so as to avoid any unpleasantness as well as the rain that was fast approaching.

We searched Mr Tumbusch under the fly as the rain began to fall in earnest. He stood with arms akimbo as we emptied the contents of his market wallet and basket onto the ground under the canvas of the Acasta camp. After a very thourough search, it was concluded that he was not in possession of the packet.

The three initial suspects produced no results.

Friday, September 14

A letter from the Doctor

My recent missive to Mr. Rothman concerning a sequel of some interest to those assembled here:
My dear Sir,

Though the agreeable news of Captain Aubrey's capture of the Acheron arrived here in the North American Station some time back, their too long silence has given us all so much uneasiness of late. It has been quite some time since any word was received from our mutual friends aboard H.M.S. Surprise and I will speak frankly when I say that we have all begun to fear for their safety. It is not that I doubt the skill of our Captain Aubrey or his men, but as you know, the perils of life in His Majesty's Service combined with the deviousness of Bonaparte's forces should not to be underestimated. 

It is my hope that you can forgive this impertinence, but your address was supplied to me by Capt. Aubrey himself some time ago. He suggested that if there were no news of the Surprise that you might be the man to inform us of her where-abouts. And as you may know, there has been no word of her these long years. It is my hope that you know something of her that we do not. I am very sorry to press you ; but if I had not reason, I should not have called upon you. 

Any word of the fate of the Surprise that you might be able to pass along would be greatly appreciated by myself and the crew of the Acasta. It would certainly bolster the morale of His Majesty's forces here in the North American Station during this long war. 

We are all, thank God, very well, and desire to be remembered to you; and be assured a letter from you will give great pleasure to all your friends here, but none more than 

Your Humble and Obt Servant, 
Dr. A. Roberts 
Ship's Surgeon 
HMS Acasta 
Navy Hall, Halifax
 You may contact Mr. Rothman yourself as instructed by Capt Aubrey if you wish by addressing your missive to the following:
20th Century Fox Theatricals 
ATTN: Tom Rothman (Master and Commander 2) 
P.O. Box 900 
 Beverly Hills, CA 90213-0900 
foxmovies@fox.com 
rothmana@fox.com