Prescott Ford Jernegan was born in Edgartown on December 17, 1866, during the same year his parents, Helen and Jared Jernegan, had sailed back from Honolulu on the Oriole. The younger brother of Laura, Prescott was said to be a very likeable and mischievous child.
It is from Laura's journal and memoirs that we know some of the things that Prescott did on board the Roman, on which he and his family sailed between October 1868 and April 1871. As Laura wrote in her 1912 memoir, her brother often entertained himself by playing tricks: "the old cook sat up on a stool in the doorway of the galley….Prescott stole up, snatched off his old, greasy cap, and threw it overboard."
After returning from the journey on the Bark Roman with his mother and sister in 1871, Prescott spent most of his childhood in Edgartown. By the time Prescott entered school in Edgartown, he had had many adventures at sea and on land. By age 12 he was a tall, active, overgrown lad who had read some 200 books about travel and adventure.
Martha's Vineyard Museum