On the South wall of the chancel.
OF THE SELF DEVOTION OF
CHARLES ADOLPHUS BAKER ESQR
WHEN THAT SLOOP WAS WRECKED ON THE COAST OF
NEWFOUNDLAND ON 23RD JUNE 1822
TO PROVIDE FOR HIS OWN SAFETY
UNTIL THE WHOLE OF THE CREW SHOULD BE PREVIOUSLY SAVED
AND IN PERSUANCE OF THIS GENEROUS RESOLUTION
THIS TABLET IS ERECTED
AT THE REQUEST OF THE SURVIVING
PETTY OFFICERS AND SEAMEN
EVERY ONE OF WHOM
ON PASSING FROM THE SHIP TO A ROCK
ON WHICH THEY WERE ULTIMATELY SAVED
WITH A GENEROSITY EQUAL TO HIS OWN
TO PRECEDE THEM
BUT IN VAIN
[Extract from 'St Ann's Church: A brief History' courtesy of Wendy Smith]
".....During the night, all hands being on deck, breakers were reported to be ahead; the ship was instantly hauled to the wind, but not being able to clear the danger on that tack, we endeavoured to stay the vessel; but from the heavy sea, and whilst in stay, her stern took the breakers, and she immediately fell broadside on, the sea beating completely over her; the masts were immediately cut away with the view of lightning the vessel as well as effecting a bridge to save the crew, but without success in either point, for in a few moments she bilged, at which time there did not appear the slightest hope of saving a man. The cutter was launched over the lee gangway, but immediately sank. A man attempted with a lead-line to swim on shore, but the current setting strong to the northward he was nearly drowned in the attempt. The only hope remained in the gig (the jolly boat having been washed away) which was launched from the forecastle with the boatswain and lead-line; a heavy surf washed her upon a rock, not communicating with the main (land), and dashed her to pieces and the line carried away, but the boatswain succeeded in scrambling up the rock with a few fathoms of line.
From there he swam to shore. Meanwhile the ship had totally broken up on the rock, and fearing that the sea would soon engulf them, Captain Baker ordered those who were still with him one by one to follow the line which only just stretched to the shore. When a man and a woman insisted upon going together, the line snapped. Those who had reached the shore tried unsuccessfully to make a new line by tying their handkercheifs together. By morning those who had remained on the rock with Captain Baker had been washed away."