Despite the natives' unusual appearance, they came aboard the Roman to sell fruit. One of the men gave Prescott a small black pig that would follow him around the deck.
In the letter, Laura told her grandmother about her black and white kitten, as well as being given a writing desk and silver fruit knife. She was also curious about life back home on Martha's Vineyard: "Where are you now? I should like to know where. I suppose you are in Edgartown."
Laura also mentioned writing to Aunt Eva and sending love to Aunt Binnie, and "all the rest." They are most likely the aunts with whom Helen was staying when she met Laura's father Jared in 1861.
On March 21, 1870, the Honolulu Harbormaster records show that the Roman arrived from the Marquesas Islands. On March 28, 1870, the ship was bound again for the Arctic, leaving Helen and the children in Honolulu for the spring and summer months.
Nicholson Whaling Collection, Providence Public Library