The following story was told by Sholto Percy in The Percy anecdotes. It refers to shipwrecked mariners saved through a dream. It has no connection with Scarborough but is still extremely interesting
In June, 1695, the ship Mary, commanded by Captain Jones, with a crew of twenty two men, sailed from Spithead for the West Indies; and contrary to the remonstrances of one Adams on board, the master steered a course which brought the vessel on the Caskets, a large body of rocks, two or three leagues S. E. of Guernsey.
It was about three o'clock in the morning, when the ship struck against the high rock, all the bows were stove in; the water entered most rapidly, and in less than half an hour, she sunk. Those of the crew who were in the forepart of the ship, got upon the rock; but the rest, to the number of eight, who were in the hind part, sunk directly, and were seen no more.
Adams and thirteen more, who were on the rock, had not time to save anything out of the ship for their subsistence ; and the place afforded them none, nor even any shelter from the heat of the sun. The first day they went down the rock, and gathered limpets, but finding that they increased their thirst, they eat no more of them. The third day they killed the dog which had swam to the rock, and eat him, or rather chewed his flesh, to allay their thirst, which was excessive.
They passed nine days without any other food, and without any prospect of relief; their flesh wasted, their sinews shrunk, and their mouths parched with thirst; on the tenth day, they agreed to cast lots, that two of the company should die, in order to preserve the rest a little longer.
When the two men were marked out, they were willing and ready to stab themselves, as had been agreed on with horrible ingenuity, in order that those who were living might put a tobacco pipe into the incision, and each in his turn suck so many gulphs of blood to quench his thirst!
But although the necessity was so pressing, they were yet unwilling to resort to this dreadful extremity, and resolved to stay one day more in bones of seeing a ship. The next day, no relief appearing, the two wretched victims on whom the lots bad fallen, stabbed themselves, the rest sucked their blood, and were thus revived for a short time.
They still continued to make signals of distress, and having hoisted a piece of a shirt on a stick, it was at length seen by a ship's crew of Guernsey, one Taskard, master, bound from that island to Southampton.
They were all taken on board, when each had a glass of cider and water to drink, which refreshed them considerably; but two of them eagerly seizing a bottle, drank to excess, which caused the death of both in less than two hours.
The most remarkable circumstance connected with this shipwreck, is yet to he mentioned. It was with great reluctance that Taskard brought his ship near the Caskets, which were out of his course; but he was very much importuned by his son, who had twice dreamed that there were men in distress upon these rocks.
The father refused to notice the first dream, and was angry with his son; nor would he have yielded on the second, if there had been a favorable wind to go on his own course.