About the Book
Between the 16th and 18th centuries several European ships involved in trade with the East came to grief on the south-east African coast, the most famous being the Grosvenor. In almost all cases there were survivors, both passengers and crew, whose stories were later written down. And what stories these are. Many parties undertook epic journeys on foot from the wreck site to reach places where they might be rescued. These journeys involved great feats of endurance for the survivors, who tramped by foot for hundreds of kilometres through unknown territory inhabited by people whose European prejudices of the day regarded as hostile ‘savages’. Even more remarkably, a few parties constructed their own small ships from the wreckage and sailed off to seek rescue.
About the Author
Dr Gillian Vernon, who was formerly director of the East London Museum, has studied the shipwreck narratives and has herself travelled along some of the routes the survivors took.