On the late afternoon of June 28, 1865, Captain Thomas G. Young, master of the whaleship Favorite, defiantly stood atop the roof of his cabin, brandishing revolvers and bomb guns. His courage, perhaps inspired by liquor, was stout in the face of the nearing Confederate ship. He determined his ship would not be like the other thirty-one New Bedford whaleships that fell to Confederate pirates since 1862. Fearful for their captain’s life, his crew pleaded with him to stand down. Any fight he made would be fruitless and would probably end up killing him. But Young was a desperate man and refused to surrender. He made his desperation known when he proclaimed to his crew “I have only four or five years to live anyway, and I might as well die now as any time, especially as all I have is invested in my vessel, and if I lose that I will go home penniless and die a pauper.” His crew was not sympathetic with his desire to die heroically. Before abandoning their captain and surrendering to the Confederate sailors, the crew members removed the percussion caps from Young’s weapons, rendering the pieces useless.
.pdf (text searchable)