They that go down to the sea in ships and occupy their business in great waters; these men see the works of the Lord and His wonders in the deep. For at His word the stormy wind ariseth which lifteth up the waters thereof. They are carried up to heaven and down again to the deep; their soul melteth away because of the trouble. They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their witsí end.
So when they cry unto the Lord in their trouble, He delivereth them out of their distress. For He maketh the storm to cease so that the waves thereof are still. Then are they glad because they are at rest; and so He bringeth them unto the haven where they would be.
(Psalm 107, verses 23-30)
The Sailor's Psalm
The History of Five Generations of Mariners and Naval Officers
Since the earliest traces of the lines of the Salt family, the men (and now more recently the women) have been associated with ships and seagoing. I suspect there must have been something in the blood of consecutive generations, who felt drawn to the sea. Perhaps it was the smell of the salt air, or possibly the feeling of freedom created by wide open skies, long, lonely stretches of ocean or black nights filled endlessly with stars. Maybe it was the feeling of being close to nature or the excitement of the challenge of taking on the elements and surviving and then to pass the adventure to family and friends.
Sometimes I wish I could sit with my forefathers and ask what they felt and what kept pulling them away from their families, a yearning so strong that it led some to near death, to long family separations, to war, and even to emigration to the other side of the world.
In the following pages you will find the stories of our family and their involvement with the sea, taken to a great part from information garnered from Lloyd's Register of Shipping, but also details of the Salt's service upon each ship taken from Discharge Certificates and many other sources. There are several accounts of ship-wrecks and voyages, along with a number of anecdotes passed down from generation to generation. You will even find much information on the Salt family connection to the Navy, both old and new.