"All aboard?" said the captain.
"All aboard, sir!" said the mate.
"Then stand by to let her go."
It was nine o'clock on a Wednesday morning.
The good ship Spartan was lying off Boston Quay with her cargo under hatches,
her passengers shipped, and everything prepared for a start.
The warning whistle had been sounded twice; the final bell had been rung.
Her bowsprit was turned towards England,
and the hiss of escaping steam showed that all was ready for her run of three thousand miles.
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