After packing their bags and saying good-bye to family and friends, the Jernegan family traveled from their Summer Street home in Edgartown to New Bedford. They either boarded the Steamer Monohansett or they may have caught a ride on a schooner headed that way. The Cape Cod Railroad was in operation, so it's also possible that they made their way to the docks in Woods Hole and then went by train.
When they got to New Bedford, Laura and her family stayed at the Parker House Hotel on Purchase Street. It was close to the waterfront and convenient as Captain Jernegan oversaw preparations for their voyage. They were within walking distance to the public library on the corner of William and Pleasant Streets. Helen and the children may have also walked in the Clasky Common bounded by County, Purchase, Pope and Pearl Streets. It contains one of the earliest Civil War monuments erected in the North. A centerpiece of the park, this "Soldiers' and Sailors' Monument" was dedicated in 1866.
At the Parker House, two year old Prescott was given a kitten which disappeared out of the hotel window. Fortunately, one of his parents found a replacement to take along before the voyage began. We can only imagine the excitement that Laura must have been feeling in these days before departure!
Martha's Vineyard Museum