James Nelson was with the Golden Hinde for a year, sailing from Los Angeles through the Panama Canal to Texas, eventually leaving in Houston. After selling his boat and nearly all his possessions he moved to Washington State, where he went to work aboard the Lady Washington, a replica of an 18th Century brig, as a rigger and deckhand. After the Washington, beset with financial troubles, laid everyone off, Nelson joined "H.M.S." Rose, a replica of a Revolutionary War British frigate.
The Civil War's "Patrick O'Brien"
Here's a nice little profile of James Nelson, referred to in our search for the ACW's Patrick O'Brien equivalent. Talk about doing your research: