The Wellington Independent July 12th 1859

The barque Queen of the Avon, Captain Gilbert, from London, arrived in this harbour on Wednesday last, after a passage of 110 days. She sailed from Gravesend on Wednesday the 23rd March, and anchored off Deal to land the pilot, after which she sailed again; but was compelled to put into Torquay, in consequence of contrary winds, and after a detention of two days, proceeded on her voyage. Experienced rough weather until passing Madeira, when it became fine and light, until rounding the Cape of Good Hope. After rounding the Cape she encountered a severe gale of wind, which carried away he maintopsail yard; she also shipped several heavy seas, which did considerable damage, washing away part of the port bulwarks, poop ladder, hencoop, &c. Shortly after crossing the line, a seaman named Painter, fell off the foretopsail-yard and was unfortunately drowned. Every assistance was rendered, the ship was immediately rounded too, the lifebuoy let go, a boat lowered, and every exertion made to save the unfortunate man, but unfortunately without success. It was thought that he struck some portion of the bulwarks in his fall, which must have stunned him, as he was never seen to rise to the surface of the water. There was a very heavy sea on at the time, and the boat being absent for two hours fears were entertained for her safety, and her return was therefore hailed with great delight, notwithstanding the gallant of the crew were unsuccessful. During the search the boat shipped a sea, and if it had not been for one of the men wearing sea boots, which were used as bailers, the boat would have swamped, and probably all hands in her been drowned. The Queen of the Avon brings 8 cabin, 13 second cabin, and about 110 steerage passengers, half of whom were bound for Nelson. Four births, and two deaths, (that of an adult and a child) occurred on board during the voyage. Cape Farewell was sighted on the 10th inst,. and she came to her anchorage in this port on Wednesday afternoon. The Queen of the Avon is one of Messrs Shaw Savill & Co's., line of New Zealand packets, appears to be a very fine vessel, and would have made a remarkably quick passage, if she had not lost her foretopsail yard, which was not replaced for 13 days, and consequently considerably retarded her progress. We understand that she proceeds to Nelson as soon as she has landed her passengers for this place, her cargo being all for Nelson.