"In December of 1710, the British merchant ship Nottingham Galley ran aground on Boon Island, a tiny pile of rocks off the coast from York, Maine. Although their ship was destroyed, all thirteen crew members and their captain, John Dean, made it safely onto the island.Read the rest of the tale in "Cannibals off the Coast of Maine" on the New England Folklore blog.
Since the island is only 8 or 9 miles from the mainland, they initially thought someone would come and rescue them. They were mistaken. Whether because of bad weather or just bad luck, no ships came by for 21 days. Three weeks is a long time to spend on an island that's only 700 feet long, particularly when you don't have any food and it's the start of a Maine winter."