Liverpool Mercury. Tuesday May 8th 1866: Shipwreck and Loss of Seven Lives. Narrative of one of the survivors.

"The Board of Trade received on Saturday a report, from the Receiver of Wreck at the  Scilly Islands, announcing the total loss of the ship Cubana, 600 tons register, with most of her crew, and containing the statement on oath of William Loveless, one of the survivors, which is as follows;

“I was the late Mate of the Cubana. She belonged to Sunderland, and sailed from Swansea for St Jago de Cuba on the 19th of last month, with a cargo of  coal, scrap iron, wire rope & c. At 2.30am on the 26th, the weather clear and the wind E,S,E., moderate was steering W by S, with all plain sail set, going about 8 and a half knots per hour, when she struck very heavily on the Seven Stones rock, about 3 miles W by S of the Seven Stones Lightship. I, being unwell, was below in my berth when the ship struck. On feeling the shock I jumped out and ran upon deck to ascertain the cause. The Master, who’s watch it was, had been in the cabin and went on deck at the same time. I immediately went into the fore-castle and found she was filling fast, the water being upon the forecastle deck. I therefore at once ran upon deck and cut the lashings of the Pinnace, which was launched over the ships rail in 5 minutes, when I, with ten of the crew and the passenger got into the boat, and called upon the master and the others to leave the ship but they would not do so. All was confusion, but the master stood upon the deck and never spoke. The second Mate said the ship was alright; that she was going off and there was no danger; on hearing which one man went from the boat on aboard the ship again. The boat then got under the quarter of the ship, when the master and the others were again called to and urged to get in the boat, but they would not leave the ship. The boats painter then got loose from the ship, and the boat drifted away astern of her with only 3 oars and no thowl pins. The boats painter was cut to make gummets, but the boat could not be got back to the ship, and when between a quarter and a half a mile distant, the ship appeared to turn round, and fell on her starboard side, about 15 or 20 minutes after she struck and disappeared. Nothing whatever could be seen of those that were left on board. We pulled with our 11 hands in the boat, to the Seven Stones Lightship and got on board of her a little after 4. am. The pilot cutter Argus afterwards arrived from St Martins Scilly, and we went in the ships boat to the pilot cutter, which took us to St Mary’s Scilly about 2. pm. I do not know the exact quantity of the cargo, but the ship was not over loaded. Seven lives were lost by going down with the ship; viz, the Master; Second Mate; Carpenter; Steward and two seamen. There were two boats remaining on board, by which they could have left the ship had they wished to do so. I am of opinion the casualty arose from the ship being sailed too close to the Seven Stones. The Carpenter, who had the watch, and probably not knowing her dangerous position, could not feel justified in altering her course without orders. Had anything been said to me I should certainly have caused the ships course to be altered,” Signed -William Loveless" (Transcribed TS)