John Vonderlin: The Wreck of the Alice Buck: Hovius & Hale (4)

Story by John Vonderlin

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Hi June,
This article from the October 1st, 1881, issue of the “Sacramento Daily Union,” four days after the wreck, adds another new wrinkle to the reporting about the wreck of the Alice Buck. I can’t remember any previous lifesaving efforts by the folks of the Coastside being rewarded with other then their name in the paper in previous reports about shipwrecks. Considering the danger of trying to rescue the crew or passengers of a shipwreck along our wild coast, often at night in inclement weather, it’s amazing how altruistic Coastside farmers and residents were repeatedly.
Though I now think “Hovious and Hale” are generic names, as used in the article, perhaps a play off “Hale and Hearty,” I first thought how odd they both have sea-related names, as in hailing a passing ship, and the “Yo, Heave Ho” chant of sailors’ rope hauling. The fact that there was a Hovius living in both Purissima and Half Moon Bay in 1890 makes me unsure, especially because it was an unusual name in a sparsely populated area. Enjoy. John
HEROISM TO BE REWARDED. The account recently published of the wreck of the Alice Buck at Spanishtown having called the attention of the Board of Trade and Chamber of Commerce to the heroic deeds of life-saving performed by the farmer boys — Hovious and Hale — at the scene of the wreck, those institutions propose to take some means to signify to the boys an appreciation of their conduct. It is probable that solid gold medals, the size of a $20 gold piece, will be suitably engraved and presented to the brave young men.: