Sailors, Settlers & Sinners
An escape on foot from captivity in France in 1810, the attempted murder of a young wife in New Zealand and a heroic death in the Transvaal in 1880 are just three of the extraordinary stories recounted in Sailors, Settlers & Sinners. Beginning in the port of Hull in East Yorkshire during the French Revolution, it traces the life of George Hall, a mariner captured during the Napoleonic Wars, the maritime careers of his two sons, George andThomas, at the highpoint of Britain’s expansion as a world power and, finally, life in the new colony of New Zealand, where his youngest son, John, becomes Prime Minister.
Private letters and personal journals bring to life the hopes and aspirations, trials and despair of this rich parade of characters and their stories of adventure, false identity, primitive surgery, adultery, drug abuse, high political achievement and low political manoeuvring. Settings and scenes range from parties in the port of Hull to the plague-ridden streets of Constantinople; from fur-trapping in Vancouver to high-country sheep farming and early government in New Zealand. Packed with incident and telling detail, and lavishly illustrated with portraits, photographs, documents and maps, Sailors, Settlers & Sinners will appeal to anyone interested in family, maritime and political history.
The author, Moira Taylor (née Hall), is the great-great-granddaughter of Captain George Hall who escaped from France in 1810, and the great-granddaughter of Captain Thomas Williamson-Hall who settled as a pastoralist in Timaru, New Zealand.