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Title: The Naval Pioneers of Australia
Author: Louis Becke and Walter Jeffery













This book does not pretend to be a history of Australia; it merely gathers
into one volume that which has hitherto been dispersed through many. Our
story ends where Australian history, as it is generally written, begins;
but the work of the forgotten naval pioneers of the country made that
beginning possible. Four sea-captains in succession had charge of the
penal settlement of New South Wales, and these four men, in laying the
foundation of Australia, surmounted greater difficulties than have ever
been encountered elsewhere in the history of British colonization. Under
them, and by their personal exertions, it was made possible to live upon
the land; it was made easy to sail upon the Austral seas. After them came
military and civil governors and constitutional government, finding all
things ready to build a Greater Britain. Histories there are in plenty, of
so many hundred pages, devoted to describing the "blessings of
constitutional government," of the stoppage of transportation, of the
discovery of gold, and all the other milestones on the road to nationhood;
but there is given in them no room to describe the work of the sailors--a
chapter or two is the most historians afford the naval pioneers.

The printing by the New South Wales Government of the Historical Records
of New South Wales has given bookmakers access to much valuable material
(dispatches chiefly) hitherto unavailable; and to the volumes of these
Records, to the contemporary historians of "The First Fleet" of Captain
Phillip, to the many South Sea "voyages," and other works acknowledged in
the text, these writers are indebted. Their endeavour has been to collect
together the scattered material that was worth collecting relating to what
might be called the naval period of Australia. This involved some years'
study and the reading of scores of books, and we mention the fact in
extenuation of such faults of commission and omission as may be discerned
in the work by the careful student of Australian history.

The authors are very sensible of their obligations to Mr. Emery Walker,
not only for the time and trouble which he has bestowed upon the finding
of illustrations, but also for many valuable suggestions in connection
with the volume.



_London_, 1899.















    "Whenever I want a thing well done in a distant part of the world;
    when I want a man with a good head, a good heart, lots of pluck,
    and plenty of common sense, I always send for a Captain of the






Learned geographers have gone back to very remote times, even to the
Middle Ages, and, by the aid of old maps, have set up ingenious theories
showing that the Australian continent was then known to explorers. Some
evidence has been adduced of a French voyage in which the continent was
discovered in the youth of the sixteenth century, and, of course, it has
been asserted that the Chinese were acquainted with the land long before
Europeans ventured to go so far afloat. There is strong evidence that the
west coast of Australia was touched by the Spaniards and the Portuguese
during the first half of the sixteenth century, and proof of its discovery
early in the seventeenth century. At the time of these very early South
Sea voyages the search, it should always be remembered, was for a great
Antarctic continent. The discovery of islands in the Pacific was, to the
explorers, a matter of minor importance; New Guinea, although visited by
the Portuguese in 1526, up to the time of Captain Cook was supposed by
Englishmen to be a part of the mainland, and the eastern coast of
Australia, though touched upon earlier and roughly outlined upon maps,
remained unknown to them until Cook explored it.

[Illustration: MARTIN FROBISHER. From the portrait in Holland's
"Herolowologia Anglica" [London, 1620]. _To face p_. 2.]

_Early Voyages to Australia_, by R.H. Major, printed by the Hakluyt
Society in 1859, is still the best collection of facts and contains the
soundest deductions from them on the subject, and although ably-written
books have since been published, the industrious authors have added little
or nothing in the way of indisputable evidence to that collected by Major.
The belief in the existence of the Australian continent grew gradually and
naturally out of the belief in a great southern land. Mr. G.B. Barton, in
an introduction to his valuable Australian                 [Sidenote: 1578]
history, traces this from 1578, when Frobisher wrote:--

    "Terra Australis seemeth to be a great, firme land, lying under
    and aboute the south pole, being in many places a fruitefull
    soyle, and is not yet thorowly discovered, but only seen and
    touched on the north edge thereof by the travaile of the
    Portingales and Spaniards in their voyages to their East and West
    Indies. It is included almost by a paralell, passing at 40 degrees
    in south latitude, yet in some places it reacheth into the sea
    with great promontories, even into the tropicke Capricornus. Onely
    these partes are best known, as over against Capo d' buona
    Speranza (where the Portingales see popingayes commonly of a
    wonderful greatnesse), and againe it is knowen at the south side
    of the straight of Magellanies, and is called Terra del Fuego. It
    is thoughte this south lande, about the pole Antartike, is farre
    bigger than the north land about the pole Artike; but whether it
    be so or not, we have no certaine knowledge, for we have no
    particular description thereof, as we have of the land under and
    aboute the north pole."

Then Purchas, in 1678, says:--

    "This land about the Straits is not perfectly discovered, whether
    it be Continent or Islands. Some take it for Continent, and extend
    it more in their imagination than any man's experience towards
    those Islands of Saloman and New Guinea, esteeming (of which there
    is great probability) that Terra Australis, or the Southerne
    Continent, may for the largeness thereof take a first place in
    order and the first in greatnesse in the division and parting of
    the Whole World."

[Illustration: FROBISHER'S MAP. From "A true Discourse of the late Voyages
of Discoverie for the finding of a passage to Cathaya by the Northweast
under the conduct of _Martin Frobisher_, Generall:" [London, 1578]. _To
face p_. 4.]

The most important of the Spanish voyages was that made by De Quiros, who
left Callao in December, 1605, in charge of an expedition of three ships.
One of these vessels was commanded by Luis Vaez de Torres. De Quiros, who
is believed to have been by birth a Portuguese, discovered several island
groups and many isolated islands, among the former being the New Hebrides,
which he, believing he had found the continent, named Tierra Australis
del Espiritu Santo. Soon after the ships commanded by De Quiros became
separated from the other vessels, and Torres took charge. He subsequently
found that the land seen was an island group, and so determined to sail
westward in pursuance of the scheme of exploration. In about the month of
August he fell in with a chain of islands (now called the Louisiade
Archipelago and included in the British Possession of New Guinea) which he
thought, reasonably enough, was the beginning of New Guinea, but which
really lies a little to the southeast of that great island. As he could
not weather the group, he bore away to the southward,      [Sidenote: 1605]
and his subsequent proceedings are here quoted from Burney's _Voyages_:--

    "We went along three hundred leagues of coast, as I have
    mentioned, and diminished the latitude 2-1/2 degrees, which
    brought us into 9 degrees. From thence we fell in with a bank of
    from three to nine fathoms, which extends along the coast to 7-1/2
    south latitude; and the end of it is in 5 degrees. We could go no
    further on for the many shoals and great currents, so we were
    obliged to sail south-west in that depth to 11 degrees south
    latitude. There is all over it an archipelago of islands without
    number, by which we passed; and at the end of the eleventh degree
    the bank became shoaler. Here were very large islands, and they
    appeared more to the southward. They were inhabited by black
    people, very corpulent and naked. Their arms were lances, arrows,
    and clubs of stone ill-fashioned. We could not get any of their
    arms. We caught in all this land twenty persons of different
    nations, that with them we might be able to give a better account
    to your Majesty. They give [us] much notice of other people,
    although as yet they do not make themselves well understood. We
    were upon this bank two months, at the end of which time we found
    ourselves in twenty-five fathoms and 5 degrees south latitude and
    ten leagues from the coast; and having gone 480 leagues here, the
    coast goes to the north-east. I did not search it, for the bank
    became very shallow. So we stood to the north."

The "very large islands" seen by Torres were no doubt the hills of Cape
York, the northernmost point of Australia, and so he, all unconsciously,
had passed within sight of the continent for which he was searching. A
copy of the report by Torres was lodged in the archives of Manila, and
when the English took that city in 1762, Dalrymple, the celebrated
geographer, discovered it, and gave the name of Torres Straits to what
is now well known as the dangerous passage dividing New Guinea from
Australia. De Quiros, in his ship, made no further discovery; he arrived
on the Mexican coast in October, 1606, and did all he could to induce
Philip III. of Spain to sanction further exploration, but without success.

Of the voyages of the Dutch in Australian waters much interesting matter
is available. Major sums up the case in these words:--

    "The entire period up to the time of Dampier, ranging over two
    centuries, presents these two phases of obscurity: that in the
    sixteenth century (the period of the Portuguese and Spanish
    discoveries) there are indications on maps of the great
    probability of Australia having already been discovered, but with
    no written documents to confirm them; while in the seventeenth
    century there is documentary evidence that its coasts were touched
    upon or explored by a considerable number of Dutch voyagers, but
    the documents immediately describing these voyages have not been

The period of known Dutch discovery begins with the        [Sidenote: 1644]
establishment of the Dutch East India Company, and a knowledge of the west
coast of Australia grew with the growth of the Dutch colonies, but grew
slowly, for the Dutchmen were too busy trading to risk ships and spend
time and money upon scientific voyages.

In January, 1644, Commodore Abel Janszoon Tasman was despatched upon his
second voyage of discovery to the South Seas, and his instructions, signed
by the Governor-General of Batavia, Antonio Van Diemen, begin with a
recital of all previous Dutch voyages of a similar character. From this
document an interesting summary of Dutch exploration can be made. Tasman,
in his first voyage, had discovered the island of Van Diemen, which he
named after the then Governor of Batavia, but which has since been named
Tasmania, after its discoverer. During this first voyage the navigator
also discovered New Zealand, passed round the east side of Australia
without seeing the land, and on his way home sailed along the northern
shore of New Guinea.

But to come back to the summary of Dutch voyages found in Tasman's
instructions: During 1605 and 1606 the Dutch yacht _Duyphen_ made two
exploring voyages to New Guinea. On one trip the commander, after
coasting New Guinea, steered southward along the islands on the west side
of Torres Straits to that part of Australia, a little to the west and
south of Cape York, marked on modern maps as Duyphen Point, thus
unconsciously--for he thought himself still on the west coast of New
Guinea--making the first authenticated discovery of the continent.

Dirk Hartog, in command of the _Endragt_, while on his way from Holland to
the East Indies, put into what Dampier afterwards called Sharks' Bay, and
on an island, which now bears his name, deposited a tin plate with an
inscription recording his arrival, and dated October 25th, 1616. The plate
was afterwards found by a Dutch navigator in 1697, and replaced by
another, which in its turn was discovered in July, 1801, by Captain
Hamelin, of the _Naturaliste_, on the well-known French voyage in search
of the ill-fated La Pérouse. The Frenchman copied the inscription, and
nailed the plate to a post with another recording his own voyage. These
inscriptions were a few years later removed by De Freycinet, and deposited
in the museum of the Institute of Paris. Hartog ran along the coast a few
degrees, naming the land after his ship, and was followed by many other
voyagers at frequent intervals down to the year       [Sidenote: 1623-1627]
1727, from which time Dutch exploration has no more a place in Australian

During the 122 years of which we have records of their voyages, although
the Dutch navigators' work, compared with that done by Cook and his
successors, was of small account; yet, considering the state of nautical
science, and that the ships were for the most part Dutch East Indiamen,
the Dutch names which still sprinkle the north and the west coasts of the
continent show that from Cape York in the extreme north, westward of the
Great Australian Bight in the south, the Dutchmen had touched at intervals
the whole coast-line.

But before leaving the Dutch period there are one or two voyages that,
either on account of their interesting or important character, deserve
brief mention.

In 1623 Arnhem's Land, now the northern district of the Northern Territory
of South Australia, was discovered by the Dutch yachts _Pesa_ and
_Arnhem_. This voyage is also noteworthy on account of the massacre of the
master of the _Arnhem_ and eight of his crew by the natives while they
were exploring the coast of New Guinea. In 1627 the first discovery of the
south coast was made by the _Gulde Zeepard_, and the land then explored,
extending from Cape Leeuwin to the Nuyts Archipelago, on the South
Australian coast, was named after Peter Nuyts, then on board the ship on
his way to Batavia, whence he was sent to Japan as ambassador from

In the year 1628 a colonizing expedition of eleven vessels left Holland
for the Dutch East Indies. Among these ships was the _Batavia_, commanded
by Francis Pelsart. A terrible storm destroyed ten of the fleet, and on
June 4th, 1629, the _Batavia_ was driven ashore on the reef still known as
Houtman's Abrolhos, which had been discovered and named by a Dutch East
Indiaman some years earlier--probably by the commander of the _Leeuwin_,
who discovered and named after his ship the cape at the south-west point
of the continent. The _Batavia_, which carried a number of chests of
silver money, went to pieces on the reef. The crew of the ship managed to
land upon the rocks, and saved some food from the wreck, but they were
without water. Pelsart, in one of the ship's boats, spent a couple of
weeks exploring the inhospitable coast in the neighbourhood in the hope of
discovering water, but found so little that he ultimately determined to
attempt to make Batavia and from there bring               [Sidenote: 1629]
succour to his ship's company. On July 3rd he fell in with a Dutch ship
off Java and was taken on to Batavia. From there he obtained help and
returned to the wreck, arriving at the Abrolhos in the middle of
September; but during the absence of the commander the castaways had gone
through a terrible experience, which is related in Therenot's _Recueil de
Voyages Curieux,_ and translated into English in Major's book, from which
the following is extracted:--

    "Whilst Pelsart is soliciting assistance, I will return to those
    of the crew who remained on the island; but I should first inform
    you that the supercargo, named Jerome Cornelis, formerly an
    apothecary at Haarlem, had conspired with the pilot and some
    others, when off the coast of Africa, to obtain possession of the
    ship and take her to Dunkirk, or to avail themselves of her for
    the purpose of piracy. This supercargo remained upon the wreck ten
    days after the vessel had struck, having discovered no means of
    reaching the shore. He even passed two days upon the mainmast,
    which floated, and having from thence got upon a yard, at length
    gained the land. In the absence of Pelsart, he became commander,
    and deemed this a suitable occasion for putting his original
    design into execution, concluding that it would not be difficult
    to become master of that which remained of the wreck, and to
    surprise Pelsart when he should arrive with the assistance which
    he had gone to Batavia to seek, and afterwards to cruise in these
    seas with his vessel. To accomplish this it was necessary to get
    rid of those of the crew who were not of his party; but before
    imbruing his hands with blood he caused his accomplices to sign a
    species of compact, by which they promised fidelity one to
    another. The entire crew was divided [living upon] between three
    islands; upon that of Cornelis, which they had named the graveyard
    of Batavia, was the greatest number of men. One of them, by name
    Weybehays, a lieutenant, had been despatched to another island to
    seek for water, and having discovered some after a search of
    twenty days, he made the preconcerted signal by lighting three
    fires, but in vain, for they were not noticed by the people of
    Cornelis' company, the conspirators having during that time
    murdered those who were not of their party. Of these they killed
    thirty or forty. Some few saved themselves upon pieces of wood,
    which they joined together, and going in search of Weybehays,
    informed him of the horrible massacre that had taken place. Having
    with him forty-five men, he resolved to keep upon his guard, and
    to defend himself from these assassins if they should make an
    attack upon his company, which in effect they designed to do, and
    to treat the other party in the same manner; for they feared lest
    their company, or that which remained upon the third island,
    should inform the commander upon his arrival, and thus prevent the
    execution of their design. They succeeded easily with the party
    last mentioned, which was the weakest, killing the whole of them,
    excepting seven children and some women. They hoped to succeed as
    easily with Weybehays' company, and in the meanwhile broke open
    the chests of merchandise which had been saved from the vessel.
    Jerome Cornelis caused clothing to be made             [Sidenote: 1629]
    for his company out of the rich stuffs which he found therein,
    choosing to himself a bodyguard, each of whom he clothed in scarlet,
    embroidered with gold and silver. Regarding the women as part of
    the spoil, he took one for himself, and gave one of the daughters
    of the minister to a principal member of his party, abandoning
    the other three for public use. He drew up also certain rules for
    the future conduct of his men.

[Illustration: A DUTCH MAN-OF-WAR OF THE END OF THE 17th CENTURY. From a
print after Vandervelde.]

    "After these horrible proceedings he caused himself to be elected
    captain-general by a document which he compelled all his
    companions to sign. He afterwards sent twenty-two men in two
    shallops to destroy the company of Weybehays, but they met with a
    repulse. Taking with him thirty-seven men, he went himself against
    Weybehays, who received him at the water's edge as he disembarked,
    and forced him to retire, although the lieutenant and his men had
    no weapons but clubs, the ends of which were armed with spikes.
    Finding force unavailing, the mutineer had recourse to other
    means. He proposed a treaty of peace, the chaplain, who remained
    with Weybehays, drawing up the conditions. It was agreed to with
    this proviso, that Weybehays' company should remain unmolested,
    and they, upon their part, agreed to deliver up a little boat in
    which one of the sailors had escaped from the island where
    Cornelis was located to that of Weybehays, receiving in return
    some stuffs for clothing his people. During his negotiations
    Cornelis wrote to certain French soldiers who belonged to the
    lieutenant's company offering to each a sum of money to corrupt
    them, with the hope that with this assistance he might easily
    compass his design. His letters, which were without effect, were
    shown to Weybehays, and Cornelis, who was ignorant of their
    disclosure, having arrived the next day with three or four others
    to find Weybehays and bring him the apparel, the latter caused him
    to be attacked, killed two or three of the company, and took
    Cornelis himself prisoner. One of them, by name Wouterlos, who
    escaped from this rout, returned the following day to renew the
    attack, but with little success.

    "Pelsart arrived during these occurrences in the frigate _Sardam_.
    As he approached the wreck he observed smoke from a distance, a
    circumstance that afforded him great consolation, since he
    perceived by it that his people were not all dead. He cast anchor,
    and threw himself immediately into a skiff with bread and wine,
    and proceeded to land on one of the islands. Nearly at the same
    time a boat came alongside with four armed men. Weybehays, who was
    one of the four, ... informed him of the massacre, and advised him
    to return as speedily as possible to his vessel, for that the
    conspirators designed to surprise him, having already murdered
    twenty-five persons, and to attack him with two shallops, adding
    that he himself had that morning been at close quarters with them.
    Pelsart perceived at the same time the two shallops coming towards
    him, and had scarcely got on board his own vessel before they came
    alongside. He was surprised to see the people covered with
    embroidery of gold and silver and weapons in their hands, and
    demanded of them why they approached the vessel armed. They
    replied that they would inform him when they came on board. He
    commanded them to cast their arms into the sea, or otherwise he
    would sink them. Finding themselves compelled          [Sidenote: 1629]
    to submit, they threw away their weapons, and being ordered on
    board, were immediately placed in irons. One of them, named Jan
    de Bremen, confessed that he had put to death or assisted in the
    assassination of twenty-seven persons. The same evening Weybehays
    brought his prisoner on board.

    "On the 18th day of September the captain and the master-pilot,
    taking with them ten men of Weybehays' company, passed over in
    boats to the island of Cornelis. Those who still remained thereon
    lost all courage as soon as they saw them, and allowed themselves
    to be placed in irons."

Pelsart remained another week at the Abrolhos, endeavouring to recover
some of the _Batavia's_ treasure, and succeeded in finding all but one
chest. The mutineers were tried by the officers of the _Sardam_, and all
but two were executed before the ship left the scene of their awful crime.
The two men who were not hanged were put on shore on the mainland, and
were probably the first Europeans to end their lives upon the continent.
Dutch vessels for many years afterwards sought for traces of the marooned
seamen, but none were ever discovered.

The 1644 voyage of Tasman was made expressly for the purpose of exploring
the north and north-western shores of the continent, and to prove the
existence or otherwise of straits separating it from New Guinea. Tasman's
instructions show this, and prove that while the existence of the straits
was suspected, and although Torres had unconsciously passed through them,
they were not known. Tasman explored a long length of coast-line,
establishing its continuity from the extreme north-western point (Arnhem
Land) as far as the twenty-second degree of south latitude (Exmouth Gulf).
He failed to prove the existence of Torres Straits, but to him, it is
generally agreed, is due the discovery and naming of the Gulf of
Carpentaria (Carpenter in Tasman's time being President at Amsterdam of
the Dutch East India Company) and the naming of a part of North Australia,
as he had previously named the island to the south, after Van Diemen. From
this voyage dates the name New Holland: the great stretch of coast-line
embracing his discoveries became known to his countrymen as Hollandia
Nova, a name which in its English form was adopted for the whole
continent, and remained until it was succeeded by the more euphonious name
of Australia. Tasman continued doing good service for the Dutch East India
Company until his death at Batavia about 1659.

The last Dutch voyage which space permits us to mention    [Sidenote: 1727]
briefly is that of the _Zeewigk_, which ship was wrecked on the Abrolhos
in 1727, with a quantity of treasure on board. Some of the crew built a
sloop out of the wreck and made their way to Batavia, taking with them
the bulk of the treasure; but from time to time, even down to the present
century, relics of the wreck, including several coins, have been
recovered, and are now to be seen in the museum of the West Australian
capital. But before the Dutch had given up exploring the coast of New
Holland, Dampier, the first Englishman to set foot upon its shores, had
twice visited the continent, and with his two voyages the English naval
story of Australia may properly begin.



    "I dined with Mr. Pepys, where was Captain Dampier, who had been a
    famous buccaneer, had brought hither the painted Prince Job, and
    printed a relation of his very strange adventure and his
    observations. He was now going abroad again by the King's
    encouragement, who furnished a ship of 290 tons. He seemed a more
    modest man than one would imagine by the relation of the crew he
    had consorted with. He brought a map of his observations of the
    course of the winds of the South Sea, and assured us that the maps
    hitherto extant were all false as to the Pacific Sea, which he
    makes on the south of the line, that on the north and running by
    the coast of Peru being I exceedingly tempestuous."

Thus wrote John Evelyn on August 6th, 1698.

Of the adventurous career of Dampier prior to this date too much fiction
and quite enough history has already been written; but we cannot omit a
short account of the buccaneer's life up to the time of his receiving King
William's commission.

Dampier was born in 1652 at East Coker,               [Sidenote: 1673-1698]
Somersetshire. Of his parents he tells us that "they did not originally
design me for the sea, but bred me at school till I came of years fit for
a trade. But upon the death of my mother they who had the disposal of me
took other measures, and, having removed me from the Latin school to learn
writing and arithmetic, they soon placed me with a master of a ship at
Weymouth, complying with the inclinations I had very early of seeing the

Dampier made several voyages in merchantmen; then he shipped as able
seaman on the _Royal Prince_, Captain Sir Edward Spragge, and served under
him till the death of that commander at the end of the Dutch war in 1673.
Soon after he made a voyage to the West Indies; then began an adventurous
life--ashore cutting logwood in the Bay of Campeachy when not fighting;
afloat a buccaneer--of which he has given us details in his _Voyage round
the Terrestrial Globe_.

In March, 1686, Dampier in a little barque, the _Cygnet_, commanded by
Captain Swan, quitted the American coast and sailed westward across the
Pacific. On this voyage the _Cygnet_ touched at the Ladrones, the Bashee
Islands, the Philippines, Celebes, Timor, New Holland, and the Nicobar
Islands. Here Dampier left his ship and worked his way to England, which
he reached in 1691. (The _Cygnet_ was afterwards lost off Madagascar.) He
had brought home with him from Mindanao a tattooed slave, whom he called
the "Painted Prince Jeoey," and who was afterwards exhibited as the first
painted savage ever seen in England. "Jeoey," who died at Oxford, is the
"painted Prince Job" mentioned by Evelyn.

It has been stated that the _Cygnet_ touched at New Holland. This land was
sighted on January 4th, 1688, in what Dampier says was "latitude 16·50 S.
About three leagues to the eastward of this point there is a pretty deep
bay, with abundance of islands in it, and a very; good place to anchor in
or to haul ashore. About a league to the eastward of that point we
anchored January the 5th, 1688, two miles from the shore."

A modern map of West Australia will show the West Kimberley goldfield. To
the west of the field is the district of West Kimberley, and upon the
coast-line is the Buccaneer Archipelago. The bay in which Dampier anchored
is still called Cygnet Bay, and it is situated in the north-west corner
of King's Sound, of which "that point" to which "we went a league to the
eastward" is named Swan Point, while a rock called Dampier's Monument more
particularly commemorates the buccaneer's visit.

The ship remained in Cygnet Bay until March 12th, and during that time the
vessel was hove down and repaired. Dampier's observations on the
aboriginal inhabitants during his stay is summed up in his description of
the natives whom he saw, and who were, he says, "the most miserable people
in the world. The Hodmadods" (Hottentots) "of Monomatapa, though a nasty
people, yet for wealth are gentlemen to these." He gives an accurate
description of the country so far as he saw it, and asserts that "New
Holland is a very large tract of land. It is not yet determined whether it
is an island or a main continent; but I am certain that it joins neither
Asia, Africa, nor America."

While the ship was being overhauled under the sweltering rays of a
tropical sun, the men lived on shore in a tent, and Dampier, who was tired
of the voyage, probably because there were no Spaniards to fight and no
prizes to be made, endeavoured to persuade his companions to shape their
next course for some port where was an English factory; but they would
not listen to him, and for his pains he was threatened that when the ship
was ready for sea he should be landed and left behind.

Evelyn tells us that in 1698 Dampier was going abroad again by the King's
commission, and this second voyage of the ex-buccaneer to the South Seas,
although of small importance to geographers, is noteworthy, inasmuch as
Dampier's was the first visit of a ship of the English royal navy to
Australian seas.

To understand what sort of an expedition was this of two hundred years
ago, how Dampier was equipped and what manner of ship and company he
commanded, it will not be out of place to give some account of the navy at
that time. When James II. abdicated in 1688, according to Pepys, the royal
navy was made up of 173 ships of 101,892 tons, an armament of 6930 guns,
and 42,003 men. William died in 1702, and the number of ships had then
increased to 272, and the tonnage to 159,020 tons.

The permanent navy, begun by Henry VIII. and given its first system of
regular warfare by the Duke of York in 1665, had become well established,
and trading vessels had ceased to form a part of the regular
establishment. King William III., although not so good a friend to the
service as his predecessor, and anything but a sailor, like the fourth
William, did not altogether neglect it. In the Introduction to James'
_Naval History_ we are told that between the years 1689 and 1697 the navy
lost by capture alone 50 vessels, and it is probable that an equal number
fell by the perils of the sea. King William meantime added 30 ships, and
half that number were captured from the French, while several 20 and
30-gun ships were besides taken from the enemy.

Coming back to the first naval expedition to Australia, the ship commanded
by Dampier was the _Roebuck_, as Evelyn tells us, a vessel of 290 tons.
Dampier has left very little description of his ship, but it is not
difficult to picture her, for by this time the ratings of ships had been
settled upon certain lines, and the meaning of the word "rating" as used
at this period is easily ascertainable.

According to Charnock's _Marine Architecture_, the _Roebuck_, lying at
Deptford in June, 1684, was a sixth-rate of 24 guns and 85 men. This was
her war complement; but Dampier himself tells us that he "sailed from the
Downs early on Saturday, January 14th, 1699, with a fair wind, in His
Majesty's ship the _Roebuck_, carrying but 12 guns on this voyage and 50
men with 20 months' provisions."

In 1677, according to James' _History_, the smallest fifth-rate then
afloat corresponds nearest to the _Roebuck_, and, no doubt, by Dampier's
time this vessel had been reduced in her rating. The vessel of 1677 is
described as being of 265 tons and 28 guns, "sakers and minions," with a
complement of about 100 men. The largest sixth-rate was 199 tons, 18 guns,
and 85 men. So from these particulars we can take it as correct that the
_Roebuck_ in 1699 was a sixth-rate. It is worth remembering that in
Cavendish's second expedition to the South Sea, in 1591, there was a ship
called the _Roebuck_, commanded by John Davis, and likely enough the
sixth-rate in which Dampier sailed was named after her, those who gave her
the name little thinking at the time of her christening (she was built
before Dampier's voyage, and was certainly not the _Roebuck_ of
Cavendish's fleet) how appropriately they were naming her for her future

print in the British Museum by Paine.]

Her armament is a matter of interest, for just about her time--that is,
between the years 1685 and 1716--the naming of guns after beasts and
birds of prey went out of fashion, and they were distinguished by the
weight of the shot fired. James, quoting from Sir William Monson's _Naval
Tracts_, supplies the following table on the subject of sea guns; and, as
they were probably still in use in Dampier's time, we print it here:--

                       | Bore of  | Weight of | Weight of | Weight of
       Names.          |cannon in | cannon in |  shot in  | powder in
                       | inches.  |  pounds.  |  pounds.  |  pounds.
                       |          |           |           |
  Cannon-royal         |  8-1/2   |   8000    |  66       |  30
  Cannon               |  8       |   6000    |  60       |  27
  Cannon-serpentine    |  7       |   5500    |  53-1/2   |  25
  Bastard cannon       |  7       |   4500    |  41       |  20
  Demi-cannon          |  6-3/4   |   4000    |  33-1/2   |  18
  Cannon-petro         |  6       |   4000    |  24-1/2   |  14
  Culverin             |  5-1/2   |   4500    |  17-1/2   |  12
  Basilisk             |  5       |   4000    |  15       |  10
  Demi-culverin        |  4       |   3400    |   9-1/2   |   8
  Bastard culverin     |  4       |   3000    |   5       |   5-3/4
  Sakers               |  3-1/2   |   1400    |   5-1/2   |   5-1/2
  Minion               |  3-1/2   |   1000    |   4       |   4
  Falcon               |  2-1/2   |    660    |   2       |   3-1/2
  Falconet             |  2       |    500    |   1-1/2   |   3
  Serpentine           |  1-1/2   |    400    |     3/4   |   1-3/4
  Rabinet              |  1       |    300    |     1/2   |     1/2

The small arms were matchlocks, snaphainces, musketoons, blunderbusses,
pistols, halberts, swords, and hangers.

From this it will be seen that the _Roebuck's_ guns, considering the
peaceful service she was upon, were probably known to her company as
"sakers" and "falcons."

In a sixth-rate the sakers were carried all on the one deck, and the
minions on the quarterdeck. Charnock supplies an illustration of a
sixth-rate of the time, and the picture is a familiar one to all who have
taken even a slight interest in the ships of a couple of centuries ago. A
lion rampant decorates the stem, set as it remained till early in the
present century (the galley prow had gone with Charles I.); the hull
looked not a whit more clumsy than that of an old north-country collier of
our youth, but the flat stern, with its rows of square windows, richly
carved panelling, and big stern-lanterns, and the row of round gun-ports
encircled by gold wreaths along the ship's sides, are distinctive marks of
this period.

A vessel of this kind was ship-rigged, about 88 feet long by 24 feet beam;
the depth of her hold, in which to store her twenty months' provisions (a
marvellously large quantity as stores were then carried), was about 11
feet, and her draught of water when loaded about 12 feet aft. She had one
deck and a poop and forecastle, the former extending from either end of
the ship to the waist. A good deal of superfluous ornament had by this
time been done away with, although there was plenty of it so late as 1689.
Charnock describes a man-of-war of that date. After the Restoration, ships
grew apace in grandeur in and out. Inboard they were painted a dull red
(this was, it is said, so that in fighting the blood of the wounded should
not show), outside blue and gilded in the upper parts, then yellow, and
last black to the water-line, with white bottoms. Copper sheathing had not
come into use, and ships' bottoms were treated with tallow, which was made
to adhere by being laid on between nails which studded the bottom.

The pitching of the vessels imperilled the masts of these somewhat cranky
ships of 1689, says a writer of about Dampier's time, who also tells us
that ships then had awnings, and that "glass lanthorns were worthier best
made of crystal horn; lanthorns were worthier than isinglass."

The sails were the usual courses: big topsails and topgallantsails,
staysails, and topmastsails, with a spritsail and a lateen-mizen; the
spanker and jib were not yet, but the sprit-topsail had just gone out. The
ship when rigged and fitted ready for sea probably cost King William's
Admiralty about £10,000. But the _Roebuck_ was pretty well worn out when
Dampier was given the command of her, as he tells us when relating her
subsequent loss.

_The British Fleet_, by Commander C.N. Robinson, is an invaluable book to
the student of naval history, and, notwithstanding plenty of book
authorities and ten years' study of the subject, the present writers are
compelled to draw upon Commander Robinson for many details. With the aid
of this work and from allusions to be found in the writings of a couple of
centuries ago, it is possible to make some sort of picture of Dampier's
companions in the _Roebuck_.

Dampier himself was a type of naval officer who entered the service of the
country by what was then, and remained for many years afterwards, one of
the best sources of supply. He had been given a fair education, and had
been duly apprenticed and learned the profession of a sailor in a merchant
ship. Upon his return from his first voyage to the South Seas he published
an account of his travels, and dedicated it to the President of the Royal
Society, the Hon. Charles Mountague, who, appreciating the author's zeal
and his intelligent public spirit, recommended him to the patronage of
the Earl of Oxford, then Principal Lord of the Admiralty. Dampier's
dedication has nothing of the fulsome flattery and begging-letter style so
often the chief characteristic of such compositions, but is the
straightforward offer of a humble worker in science of the best of his
work to the man best able to appreciate and to make the most of it.
Dampier's dedication led to his appointment in the navy, and the
transaction does honour to both the patron and him who was patronized.

As is well known, until comparatively recent times only the officers of
the fighting branch held commissions; all others were either warrant or
petty officers. In the time of William III., a captain and one lieutenant
were allowed to each ship, and none of the other officers held
commissions. The peaceful mission of the _Roebuck_ justifies us in
concluding that Dampier held the King's commission as a lieutenant
commanding, and he was probably given a lieutenant to take charge in case
of accident, a master, a couple of master's mates, a gunner, a boatswain
and carpenter, and the usual petty officers; seamen and boys made up the
complement. Dampier's pay, so far as we can ascertain, would be at the
rate of about £12 per month.

Two regiments of marine infantry had been formed so early as 1689, but
they were disbanded nine years later. It was not until 1703 that the
marines, all infantry, became a permanent branch of the service.

Uniforms had not even been thought of at this time, and the _Roebuck's_
officers, from her commander downwards, ate and drank and clothed
themselves in much the same fashion as their men. Dampier probably had a
room right aft under the long poop, and the other officers at the same end
of the ship in canvas-partitioned cabins, the fore part of her one living
deck being occupied by the crew. There was probably a mess-room under the
poop common to all the officers. What they had to eat and drink, as we
have said, was the same for all ranks. Here is a scale of provisions for
eighty-five men of a sixth-rate of 1688 for two months, taken from

                                              Tons cwts. qrs. lbs.
  Beer    (each man a wine gallon per day)  . . 17    0    0    0
  Bread   (   "    1 lb. per day)           . .  2    2    1    0
  Beef    (   "    4 "  week)               . .  1    4    0    0
  Pork    (   "    2 "   " )                . .  0   12    0   16
  Pease   (   "    2 pints per week)        . .  0   12    0   16
  Oatmeal (   "    3   "      " )[A]        . .  0   13    2   18
  Butter  (   "    6 oz. per week)          . .  0    2    1    3
  Cheese  (   "   12   "      " )           . .  0    4    2    6
  Water   (in iron-bound casks)             . .  7    0    0    0

[Footnote A: In lieu of three eighths of a fish.]

In 1690 flour and raisins were added, and an effort made to condense
water. Beer took the place of all forms of drink, and water was at that
time carried in casks.

The dress, from contemporary prints, can be easily made out, and the
allusions of Pepys and Evelyn supply the names and materials of the
garments. Pepys' diary and letters inform us how the pursers of the time
supplied the men with slops, and in _The British Fleet_ considerable
detail on this subject is given. Roughly it may be assumed that Dampier's
sailors wore petticoats and breeches, grey kersey jackets, woollen
stockings and low-heeled shoes, and worsted, canvas, or leather caps.
Canvas, leather, and coarse cloth were the principal materials, and tin
buttons and coloured thread the most ornamental part, of the costume.
Charnock says that in 1663 "sailors began first to wear distinctive dress.
A rule was that only red caps, yarn and Irish stockings, blue shirts,
white shirts, cotton waistcoats, cotton drawers, neat leather flat-heeled
shoes, blue neckcloths, canvas suits, and rugs were to be sold to them.
Red breeches were worn."

Smollett's pictures of the service in _Roderick Random_, written forty
years after Dampier's time, give us some idea of life on board ship, for
in the forty years between the two dates it differed in no essential
particulars. Pepys describes a sailor who had lost his eye in action
having the socket plugged with oakum, a fact which tells more than could a
volume of how seamen were then cared for. It was the days of the press and
of the advance-note system, which prevailed well into the present century,
and those seamen who went with Dampier of their own free will on a voyage
where nothing but the poorest pay and no prize money was to be got were
probably the lowest and most ill-disciplined rascals, drawn from a class
upon whose characters, save for their bulldog courage and reckless
prodigality, the least written the better.

[Illustration: A SIXTH-RATE, 1684. From Charnock's "History of Marine
Architecture" [London, 1800]. _To face p_. 32.]

The modern bluejacket, superior in every respect, notwithstanding certain
croakers, is infinitely better than his ancestors in the very quality
which was their best; the modern sailor faces death soberly and decently
in forms far more terrible than were ever dreamt of by his forefathers.
When the _Calliope_ steamed out of Apia Harbour in the hurricane of March,
1889, the youngest grimy coal-trimmer, whose sole duty it was to silently
shovel coal, even though his last moment came to him while doing it,
never once asked if the ship was making way. All hands in this department
were on duty for sixteen hours, and during that time no sound was heard,
save the ring of the shovels firing the boilers, nor was a question asked
by any man as to the progress of the ship or the chances of life and

Compare this end-of-the-century story with that of the loss of the
_Wager_, one of the ships of Anson's squadron; and compare the behaviour
of the _Wager's_ castaways with that of the bluejackets who stood to
attention on the deck of the _Victoria_ till the word was given to jump as
the ship heeled over--recent instances quoted merely because they occur to
the writers' minds, for there are any number of others. Such cases
illustrate forcibly this truth: we have, by careful training of the modern
sailor, added to the traditional bravery of the class a quality, not
lacking, but never properly developed, in the old type, that is, the
dignity of coolness and self-restraint, the perfect control of men in the
supreme moments of excitement and death.

Dampier's men, from a very early stage in his voyage, were a trouble to
him. Two only of them, he says, had ever crossed the line, and he was in
continual fear of some sickness arising because they were too lazy to
shift themselves, but would lie in their hammocks in wet clothes. Three
months after the ship got to sea, when nearing Brazil, he tells us that

    "the disorders in my ship made me think at present that Pernambuco
    would not be so fit a place for me, being told that ships ride
    there two or three leagues from the town, under the command of no
    forts; so that whenever I should have been ashore it might have
    been easy for my discontented crew to have cut or slipt their
    cables, and have gone away from me, many of them discovering
    already an intention to return to England, and some of them
    declaring openly that they would go no further onwards than
    Brazil. I altered my course, therefore, and stood away from Bahio
    de todos los Santos, or the Bay of All Saints, where I hoped to
    have the governor's help, if need should require, for securing my
    ship from any such mutinous attempt, being forced to keep myself
    all the way upon my guard and to lie with my officers, such as I
    could trust, and with small arms, upon the quarterdeck, it scarce
    being safe for me to lie in my cabin, by reason of the discontents
    among my men."

Similar instances of the ill-discipline of the ship are given at intervals
throughout Dampier's account of his voyage, and the commander and his
officers were all on bad terms with each other, which, however, so far as
can be judged now, was, in some degree, the fault of Dampier's uncertain

The scientific results of the _Roebuck's_ voyage were, chiefly on these
accounts, of no great importance, judged by the standard of such work
to-day; but, with the state of nautical science at the time, not much was
to be expected in the way of accurate surveying.

When Dampier set out to explore the coast of New Holland, what charts,
what instruments, what scientific knowledge and equipment, had he for the

Dampier's time was distinctively an intermediate period. Little more than
a century had elapsed since Gerard Mercator's chart was published, and
Edward Wright had taught its true principles, and about half a century
before the voyage of the _Roebuck_ such improvements as Gunter's
application of logarithms to nautical calculations, middle latitude
sailing, and the measurement of a degree on the meridian were introduced.
Hadley's quadrant came thirty years after Dampier, who must have used
Davis' instrument, then about ninety years old. Davis' work on navigation,
with Wright's chart showing the northern extremity of Australia, and
Addison's _Arithmetical Navigation_ (1625) were, no doubt, text-books on
board the _Roebuck_. Longitude by chronometer was to come half a century
after Dampier was in his grave, and such charts as he possessed did little
more than indicate the existence of Terra Australis. The Portuguese,
Spanish, and Dutch maps were not easy for Englishmen to procure, and all
that Dampier has to say on the matter is:--

    "But in the draught that I had of this coast, which was Tasman's,
    it was laid down in 19 degrees, and the shore is laid down as
    joining in one body or continent, with some openings appearing
    like rivers, and not like islands, as really they are.... This
    place, therefore, lies more northerly by 40 minutes than is laid
    down in Mr. Tasman's draught, and besides its being made a firm,
    continued land, only with some openings like the mouths of rivers,
    I found the soundings also different from what the line of his
    course shows them, and generally shallower than he makes them,
    which inclines me to think that he came not so near the shore as
    his line shows, and so had deeper soundings, and could not so well
    distinguish the islands. His meridian or difference of longitude
    from Sharks' Bay agrees well enough with my account, which is 232
    leagues, though we differ in latitude. And, to confirm my
    conjecture that the line of his course is made too near the shore,
    at least not so far to the east of this place, the water is there
    so shallow that he could not come there so nigh."

That the narrative of Tasman's voyage was at          [Sidenote: 1638-1697]
that time in existence there is little doubt, and an outline of the coasts
visited by him was given in an atlas presented to Charles II. of England,
in 1660, by Klencke, of Amsterdam, and now in the British Museum. Major
also found in the British Museum copies of charts and a quantity of MS.
describing Tasman's 1644 voyage, which, there is reason to believe, were
made from Tasman's originals by one Captain Bowrey in 1688, who had spent
fourteen years before that date trading in the Dutch East Indies. These
documents are all that have been found, and a diligent search of
geographers still leaves undiscovered Tasman's original narrative. The
1688 copies were probably known to Dampier when he sailed in the
_Roebuck_, and he was, likely enough, supplied with specially made
duplicates by the naval authorities. In 1697 a translation of a French
book was published in England by John Dunton, of the Poultry, London, with
the title _A New Discovery of Terra Incognita Australis, or the Southern
World, by James Sadeur, a Frenchman._ The Frenchman told a story of
thirty-five years' adventures in New Holland; but his tale was a lie from
beginning to end. Coming so close to the date of Dampier's voyage, it is
worth noting that he does not allude to the book, and so probably,
notwithstanding the little knowledge Englishmen then had of the southern
continent, Dampier was shrewd enough to detect the imposture.

The _Roebuck_ struck soundings on the night of August 1st, 1699, upon the
northern part of the Abrolhos. Dampier then cautiously ran northward,
keeping the land in sight until he anchored in Dirk Hartog's Road, in a
sound which he named Sharks' Bay, for the reason that his men caught and
ate, among other things, many sharks, including one eleven feet long, and
says Dampier, "Our men eat them very savorilly." He gives us, too, a
description of the kangaroo, the first introduction of that animal to
civilization. Says the navigator, "The land animals that we saw here were
only a sort of racoons, different from those of the West Indies, chiefly
as to their legs; for these have very short fore legs, but go jumping upon
them as the others do, and, like them, are very good meat."

Sharks' Bay is in what is now called the Gascoyne division of West
Australia, after the river of that name. Its chief town is Carnarvon,
situated at the mouth of the river. Wool-growing           [Sidenote: 1699]
is the principal industry, and the population is about 800.

[Illustration: CAPTAIN WILLIAM DAMPIER, R.N. From the picture in the
National Portrait Gallery painted by Thomas Murray.] _To face p_. 38.

Dampier stayed eight days in the bay, then ran northward along the coast,
discovering the archipelago named after him, and himself naming Rosemary
Island, which lies off the coast close to Roeburne, the chief town of the
north province of the colony. From here he continued his course north till
he reached Roebuck Bay, a few leagues to the south of the scene of his
first visit, and where is now the town of Broome. The Eastern Extension
Telegraph Cable Company's alternative cable from Banjoewangi comes in
here, and the town has additional importance as being the harbour for a
large pearling fleet.

Dampier left here on September 5th, intending again to land further north,
but he abandoned the idea and directed his course for Timor. After he left
Timor he called at New Guinea, discovered and named New Britain, now a
German colonial possession, spent some weeks upon the New Guinea coast,
and then returned to Timor, whence he began his voyage home. Off Ascension
the _Roebuck_ sprang a leak and foundered. Her company, who with
difficulty saved their lives, landed upon Ascension, where they remained
till they were rescued and brought to England in the _Canterbury_, East

During his stay on the coast of New Guinea Dampier, besides those
discoveries already enumerated, made others, and the frequent appearance
of his name on a modern chart of this coast still commemorates them.

Of Dampier's personality his writings give us little insight. As a good
writer should, he keeps his private affairs out of his book, but how much
we should have been interested in knowing something of the man's shore
life! Mr. Clark Russell in his admirable sketch of Dampier, for example,
takes it for granted that he never married, at any rate during his sea
career. Dampier himself tells us he was married, and gives us a very good
idea of when, but he so seldom, after once getting to work upon his
narrative, gives us a glimpse of himself that it is easily understood how
Mr. Russell came to miss that passage in the _Voyage round the World_ in
which the old sailor tells us how in 1687 he named an island the Duke of
Grafton's Isle "as soon as we all landed on it, having married my wife out
of the Duchess's family and leaving her at Arlington House at my going

He was, perhaps, not a great man, though a good sailor, who had certain
qualities which placed him above his fellows. We imagine somehow that his
expressed pious dislike for buccaneering was not altogether the cause of
his abandoning the life, and that when he set out upon his career as an
explorer the search for a land where gold could be easily got without
fighting for it was his main motive. He himself tells us so, but we think
that he might have been a greater man if his mind had been capable of a
little higher aim than the easy getting of riches. The obscurity of his
end is not remarkable when one considers how little was then thought of
the value of his discoveries. It took many years for Cook's survey of New
Holland to bring forth fruits.

In his third volume, written after his return from Ascension, he says:--

    "It has always been the fate of those who have made new
    discoveries to be disesteemed and slightly spoken of by such as
    either have had no true relish and value for the things themselves
    that are discovered, or have had some prejudice against the
    persons by whom the discoveries were made. It would be vain,
    therefore, and unreasonable in me to expect to escape the censure
    of all, or to hope for better treatment than far worthier persons
    have met with before me. But this satisfaction I am sure of
    having, that the things themselves in the discovery of which I
    have been employed are most worthy of our diligent search and
    inquiry, being the various and wonderful works of God in different
    parts of the world; and, however unfit a person I may be in other
    respects to have undertaken this task, yet, at least, I have given
    a faithful account, and have found some things undiscovered by any
    before, and which may at least be some assistance and direction to
    better qualified persons who shall come after me."

This is a very fair summary of his work, and in his dedication of his book
to the Earl of Pembroke he says truly enough:--

    "The world is apt to judge of everything by its success; and
    whoever has ill-fortune will hardly be allowed a good name. This,
    my lord, was my unhappiness in my late expedition in the
    _Roebuck_, which foundered through perfect age near the island of
    Ascension. I suffered extremely in my reputation by that
    misfortune, though I comfort myself with the thoughts that my
    enemies could not charge any neglect upon me."

Upon his return from the _Roebuck_ voyage his next exploit was the command
of a privateering expedition consisting of the _St. George_ and the
_Cinque Ports_, equipped by a company to cruise            [Sidenote: 1715]
against the Spaniards in the South Seas. He sailed upon this voyage in
April, 1703, first having the honour of a presentation by the Lord High
Admiral to the new Queen (Anne). It is well known that the voyage was a
failure, and how Dampier, in command of the _St. George_, quarrelled with
Funnel, in command of the _Cinque Ports_. After this voyage he began his
downward career, and the next heard of him is when he sailed as pilot on
the well-known Woodes Rogers expedition, returning in 1711 a very small
sharer in booty to the value of about £150,000.

It was on this voyage that Alexander Selkirk was found upon Juan
Fernandez, and Woodes Rogers learned from his pilot, Captain Dampier, how
the man had been left upon the island more than four years before from the
_Cinque Ports_, and that Selkirk was the best man in her, and so Rogers
took him on board his ship.

This, so far as written story goes, is the last of Dampier, and nothing is
known of how he spent his declining days. The discovery of his will proves
that he died in Coleman Street, St. Stephen's, London, some time in 1715.
The will does not mention the value of his property, but he could not
have died rich, and was probably not only poor, but, to judge by the fact
of his death not having been recorded by his contemporaries, must have
been almost, so far as the great folks who once patronized him were
concerned, friendless.

CHAPTER III.                                               [Sidenote: 1755]


From Dr. Hawkesworth's pedantic volumes to Sir Walter Besant's delightful
sketch, there are any number of versions of the story of Cook's life and
work. Let us assume that everyone knows how James Cook, son of a superior
farm labourer in Yorkshire, at thirteen years of age apprenticed to a
fishing village shopkeeper, ran away to sea in a Whitby collier, and
presently got himself properly apprenticed to her owners, two Quaker
brothers named Walker, and how at twenty-seven years of age, when he had
become mate of a small merchantman, he determined to anticipate the hot
press of May, 1755, and so at Wapping volunteered as A.B. on board His
Majesty's ship _Eagle_.

His knowledge of navigation and his good conduct led to such recognition
that when he was under thirty he was appointed master of the _Mercury_.
His surveying work on the St. Lawrence at the siege of Quebec was so
carried out that the Admiralty saw in him one of the most promising
officers in the service; and Sir Hugh Palliser, one of the first men to
"discover" Cook, was from this time, his best friend, giving him, in 1764,
an appointment as marine surveyor of Newfoundland, where Palliser was
governor. Cook was then a good seaman and a clever navigator, but there is
no doubt his special talents were by this particular service afforded an
opportunity for full development, and so he became the best scientific man
in the navy. In 1769 it was determined to send an expedition to the
Pacific to observe the transit of Venus. Cook had just returned from
Newfoundland, and he was appointed to the command.

Seventy years had elapsed since Dampier's voyage in the _Roebuck_.
Meanwhile what had the English done in the way of South Sea exploration?
What was the navy like at this time, a year before Nelson, a youngster of
twelve, first went to sea?

There are books enough in print to reply to these questions; but with how
much more interest could they be answered if the           [Sidenote: 1769]
newspaper press, with its interviewers and its photo-reproductions, had
been then what it is now. To put life into the skeleton histories, to give
us sea life as it was and sailors as they were, we have to trust mostly
to the novelists, who, except in rare instances, draw untrustworthy

No doubt there are families who have, so to speak, specialized their
traditions for generations; and a naval family's traditions for the last
two centuries would make a most entertaining book. Suppose, for instance,
there were living at Portsmouth a man whose family for generations had
prided itself on some one of its members having shaken hands with all the
great sailors who at some time or other in their careers must have sailed
from Spithead. This man could tell us how his father had actually shaken
hands with Nelson.

There died in February, 1898, in Melbourne, Australia, Lieutenant Pascoe,
son of Nelson's flag-lieutenant at Trafalgar, so that the first
proposition is established. Now Nelson's Pascoe could easily have been
patted on the head by Cook, and the father of any of Cook's men could
easily have sailed with Dampier. Looked at in this way, it does not seem
difficult to span the gulfs between each of these naval epochs, and if
one compares Dampier's _Roebuck_ and her crew with Cook's _Endeavour_ and
her crew and with the ships and seamen of Nelson's time, it still seems
easy enough; but between us and them steam and iron have come, and we are
as far apart from those others as the Martians are from us.

At the time when Cook started on his voyage England had for several years
been engaged in, and was almost constantly at, naval war. From the French
and Spanish prizes we got many valuable hints in the designing of ships,
and our builders improved upon them with the best workmanship and
materials in the world, so that the warships of Cook's time differed
little from, and in many cases were, the hulks which, until very recent
years, lay in our naval seaports. It ought not to be necessary to remind
readers that Nelson's _Victory_, still afloat in Portsmouth harbour, was
launched in 1765.

[Illustration: CAPTAIN JAMES COOK, R.N. From picture in the National
Portrait Gallery, painted by John Webber, K.A. _To face p._ 48.]

The sailors were for the most part pressed men, but there was a notable
difference between them and the seamen of Dampier's time. They were, and
remained for long after, wild, improvident, overgrown children such as the
nautical novelists who wrote a few years later             [Sidenote: 1769]
have pictured them; but the lawless rascals who manned king's ships or
were pirates by turns, as fortune provided, were rapidly dying out, and
veterans of the Spanish main were mostly to be found spending the evening
of their days spinning yarns of treasure islands to the yokels of the
village alehouse.

One of the causes which led to this improvement in the class of seamen was
the disgraceful behaviour of the crew of the _Wager_, a ship of Anson's
squadron, when she was lost off the Horn in 1740. A good deal of the
trouble was owing to the then state of the law, by which the pay of and
control over a ship's company ceased upon her wreck. The law was so
amended as to enlist seamen until regularly discharged from the service by
the captain of the ship under the orders of the Admiralty.

The food of sailors and the accommodation provided for them were little,
if any, better than these things had been fifty years before--for the
matter of that than they remained for fifty years later, and to the shame
of those responsible, than the food still is in many merchant ships, for
even now occasionally we hear of cases of scurvy on shipboard--a disease
which Cook, over 120 years ago, avoided, though voyaging in such a manner
as nowadays is unknown.

But the most important change that had come to the sea service was in the
methods of finding a ship's position at sea. Hadley's sextant was in use
in 1731, Harrison's chronometer in 1762, and five years later the first
number of the _Nautical Almanac_ was published, so that when Cook sailed
longitude was no longer found by rule of thumb, and the great navigator,
more than any other man, was able to and did, prove the value of these

In 1764 Byron, who had been a midshipman on the _Wager_, sailed as
commodore of an expedition consisting of two ships, the _Dolphin_ and the
_Tamar_, to make discoveries in the Southern Hemisphere. This voyage of
discovery was the first English scientific expedition since that of the
_Roebuck_. Byron returned in 1766 without touching at New Holland, his
principal discovery being the Falkland Islands. Three months after his
return another expedition sailed under the command of Wallis in the
_Dolphin_, and with Carteret in the _Swallow_. The voyage resulted in many
minor discoveries, but will be chiefly remembered for that of Tahiti and
the story of Wallis' stay there. The _Dolphin_        [Sidenote: 1766-1769]
reached England in May, 1768. The two vessels had previously separated in
Magellan Straits; and the _Swallow_, pursuing a different course to that
taken by the _Dolphin_, made many discoveries, including Pitcairn Island;
the Sandwich Group; and several islands in the neighbourhood of New
Guinea, New Ireland and the Admiralty Islands. The _Swallow_ reached
England six months after Cook sailed. The _Dolphin's_ return so long
before her consort alarmed the Admiralty for the safety of the _Swallow_,
and Carteret on his way home, falling in with the French scientific
expedition under Bougainville, who himself had been exploring in the
Pacific, was informed that two vessels had been sent out to search for him
and his men, who, it was thought, might be cast away in the Straits of

Dampier's voyage was made solely for discovery purposes; Anson, who forty
years later went into the South Seas and so near to Australia as the
Philippines, had gone out to fight; Byron, Wallis, and Carteret, who
immediately preceded Cook, had sailed to discover and chart new countries;
but Cook, who made the greatest discovery and did more important charting
than all of them put together, sailed in the _Endeavour_ for the purpose
of making certain astronomical observations, and exploration was only a
secondary object of the voyage. Wallis' return determined the spot where
the observations could best be carried out; and, on his advice, Cook was
ordered to make for Port Royal, in Tahiti.

One incident in the matter of Cook's appointment should be noted in this
connection. The command of the expedition was at first intended for
Dalrymple, the celebrated geographer and then chief hydrographer to the
Admiralty. The precedent of Halley's command of the _Paramour_ in 1698 had
taught a lesson of the danger of giving the command of a ship to a
landsman, and Sir Edward (afterwards Lord) Hawke, First Lord of the
Admiralty in 1768, said, to his everlasting credit, that he would sooner
cut off his right hand than sign a commission for any person who had not
been bred a seaman. Dalrymple, there is little doubt, never forgave Cook
for taking his place, and later on showed his resentment by an unfair
statement which will be presently alluded to.

The _Endeavour_ was what was then known as a "cat-built" ship, of 368 tons
burden, a description of vessel then much used in          [Sidenote: 1768]
the Baltic and coal trade, having large carrying capacity, with small
draught. A pencil sketch by Buchan (one of the artists who accompanied
Cook) of her hull, lying at Deptford, shows the short, stumpy
north-country collier, of which even nowadays one may occasionally see
specimens afloat. Her great, square stern has a row of four glazed
windows, alternated with ornamental panels and surrounded by scroll work,
and two square ports underneath them close to the water's edge, probably
for loading and unloading Baltic timber. The usual stern-lantern "tops
off" the structure. There is a framework for a quarterdeck extending to
the waist and the frame of a topgallant poop above this, Buchan probably
having made the sketch when she was refitting for the voyage and this
structure being erected for the accommodation of the officers.

Cook was appointed a first lieutenant in the navy and commander of the
_Endeavour_ on May 25th, 1768, and his ship's company, all told, numbered
eighty-five persons.

Sir Joseph Banks (then plain Mr.), Green the astronomer, Dr. Solander the
naturalist, two draughtsmen, and a staff of servants were also on board.
The ship, for defence against savages it is to be presumed, carried ten
four-pound carriage guns and twelve swivels. The food supply was for
eighteen months, and consisted of beef, pork, peas, oatmeal, butter,
cheese, oil, vinegar, beer, and brandy, and included materials for Dr.
McBride's method of treating the scurvy. The Admiralty gave Cook a special
order on this matter, in which they say:--

    "The malt must be ground under the direction of the surgeon, and
    made into wort (fresh every day, especially in hot weather) in the
    following manner viz.: Take one quart of ground malt and pour on
    it three quarts of boiling water; stir them well, and let the
    mixture stand close covered up for three or four hours, after
    which strain off the liquor.

    "The wort so prepared is then to be boiled into a panada with
    sea-biscuit or dried fruits usually carried to sea. The patient
    must make at least two meals a day on the said panada, and should
    drink a quart or more of the fresh infusion, as it may agree with
    him, every twenty-four hours. The surgeon is to keep an exact
    journal of the effects of the wort in scorbutic and other putrid
    diseases not attended with pestilential symptoms, carefully and
    particularly noting down, previous to its administration, the
    cases in which it is given, describing the several symptoms, and
    relating the progress and effects from time to time, which journal
    is to be transmitted to us at the end of the voyage."

We have a curious illustration of the state           [Sidenote: 1748-1768]
of the times in the manner of Cook's treatment by the Viceroy of the
Brazils, where, on the way out, he touched to refresh. The Viceroy
pretended to believe that the ship was a merchantman, and not a king's
ship, and therefore wanted her to comply with certain port regulations
which Cook was of opinion did not become the dignity of his commission. In
evidence of the _Endeavour_ being one of His Majesty's ships, Cook wrote
to the Viceroy and, among other things, drew attention to the distinctive
uniform of his officers, which is a reminder to us that at this time the
dress of naval officers was beginning to assume uniformity. George II.
suggested the colours which were adopted by the Admiralty order in 1748,
and, from admirals to lieutenants, officers were now dressed in blue
coats with white facings, lace collars and cuffs, and gold trimmings. The
uniform was continually changing, even up to within the last few years,
and nowadays one naval officer has as many different suits of uniform as
would have served all the commissioned officers of a line-of-battle ship
in his father's time.

When Cook left on this voyage he had, it has been shown, many advantages
over Dampier in the matter of nautical instruments, but there is little
doubt that he had absolutely no knowledge of the eastern coast of
Australia. Dalrymple was the first to suggest that charts, which there is
no doubt, did exist in Cook's time, and which do indicate the eastern
coast, were known to Cook. Without going into all the evidence rebutting
Dalrymple's insinuation, which has been discussed often enough, one fact
is worth remembering: Dalrymple, the most learned geographer of the
period, published his _Historical Collection of Voyages_ in 1770, and in
that work he makes no mention of the charts; but, on the contrary, his
chart of the Pacific only indicates the coastline on the north and the
west of the continent. Cook, who up to the moment of his appointment had
been too busy at the practical work of his profession to find or study
rare books or search libraries for documents and maps relating to the
Pacific, was scarcely likely in 1768 to know what was not known to
Dalrymple two years later; and also, be it remembered, Dalrymple was very
indignant at being passed over in favour of Cook. It may be taken for
granted that beyond such books as Dampier's _Voyage,_ De Brosses' volumes,
and such charts as the library of the _Endeavour_ furnished, old maps
afforded no help to Cook in his survey of New Holland. Of the charts Cook
says something in his journal. In September, 1770, he writes:--

    "The charts with which I compared such parts of this coast as I
    visited are bound up with a French work entitled _Histoire des
    Navigations aux Terres Australes_, which was published in 1756,
    and I found them tolerably exact."

As to what Cook did in the matter of dry geographical details, if the
reader wants them he must go to one or other of the hundred or more books
on the subject. In a few words, he sailed between the two main islands of
New Zealand, discovering for himself the existence of the straits
separating them. He first saw the south-east coast of New Holland at Point
Hicks, named by him after his first lieutenant, and now called Cape
Everard, in the colony of Victoria; from here he ran north to Botany Bay,
where he anchored, took in water and wood, and buried a sailor named Forby
Sutherland, who died of consumption and whose name was given to the
southern headland of the bay. It is worth noting that in every original
document relating to this voyage, save one chart, this bay is called
Stingray Bay, after, as Cook himself says, the great number of stingrays
caught in it. In one chart, in Cook's own writing, the name Botany Bay is
given; but all the _Endeavour_ logs call it Stingray Bay, and the name
Botany Bay was probably an afterthought.

From here Cook coasted north, marking almost every point and inlet with
such accuracy and such minuteness as fully justifies in its particular
meaning the statement that Cook discovered and surveyed the whole of the
eastern coast of Australia. He then sailed through Torres Straits, proving
that New Guinea was a separate island, and thence made his way to Batavia.

Before leaving the coast he landed on August 21st on Possession Island,
which lies about a couple of miles off the western shore of the Cape York
peninsula, and there formally took possession of the continent, observing
the usual ceremony of hoisting the colours and firing a volley. According
to Hawkesworth, Cook took possession of the country, and named it New
South Wales. There is no evidence whatever of this, and Hawkesworth
himself was probably the first person to write the name. In none of the
official log-books or other documents does any other name than New Holland
occur, and until Flinders suggested the name "Australia," "New Holland"
was the generally accepted title of the continent.

Another remarkable mis-statement, which is believed by many, relates to
the discovery and naming of Port Jackson, the port of Sydney. On Sunday,
May 6th, 1770, Cook's official log contains this entry:--

    "Abrest of an open bay; dist. off the nearest shore, two or three
    miles. Lat'd. obs., 33 degrees 47.

    "At this time (noon) we were between two or three miles distant
    from the land, and abrest of a bay or harbour, in which there
    appeared to be a good anchorage, and which I called Port Jackson."

It is still often written that the "open bay" was so named after a seaman
by the name of Jackson on board the ship; but Sir George Jackson, who
afterwards changed his name to Duckett, was at this time, with Mr. Philip
Stephens, joint secretary to the Admiralty. Cook named Port Jackson and
Port Stephens after these two officials, and there was no seaman named
Jackson on board the _Endeavour_. Cook did not enter Port Jackson, and the
discovery of the finest harbour in the world was left for another less
well remembered, but no less efficient and zealous, naval officer.

The simple entries in the _Endeavour's_ logbooks, to the sailor who reads
them, tell far better than the fine writing of Dr. Hawkesworth the
difficulties which Cook laboured under on this voyage. For example, His
Majesty's ship _Endeavour_ was so well found that on April 14th, 1770,
Cook has this entry:--

    "The spritsail topsail being wore to rags, it was condemned as
    unfit for its proper use, and taken to repair the topgall'ntsails,
    they being so bad as not to be worth the expense of new canvas,
    but, with the help of this sail, will be made to last some time;
    also took out one of the ship's tents (50) yards of canvas to
    repair the jibb that was split on the 1st instant, there being
    neither new canvas nor twine in the ship to spare for that

But the most serious trouble was when on the 11th of June the _Endeavour_
got ashore on the Barrier Reef. Here is Cook's entry:--

    "Shoal'd the water from 20 to 17 faths., and before the man in the
    chains could have another cast the ship struck and lay fast on
    some rocks, upon which we took in all sail, hoisted out the boats,
    and sounded round the ship, and found that we had got upon the
    edge of a reef of coral rocks, which lay to the N.W. of us, having
    in some places round the ship 3 or 4 fathoms, and in others about
    as many feet; but about 100 feet from her starboard side, she
    laying with her head to the N.E., were 7, 8, and 10 fathom.
    Carried out the stream anchor and two hawsers on the starboard
    bow and the coasting anchor and cable upon the starboard quarters,
    got down yards and topmasts, and hove taught upon the hawser and
    cable; but as we had gone ashore about high water, the ship by
    this time was quite fast. Turned all hands to lighten the ship,
    and in order to do this we not only started water, but hove
    overboard guns, iron and stone ballast, casks, hoops, staves,
    oyl-jars, stores, and whatever was of weight or in the way at
    coming at heavy articles. All this time the ship made but little
    water. Being now high water, as we thought, hove a strain upon the
    stern anchor, as I found the ship must go off that way, if at all,
    but all we could do was to no purpose, she not being afloat by a
    foot or more, notwithstanding we had hove overboard 40 or 50-ton
    weight; but as this was not sufficient, we continued to lighten
    her by every method we could think of. By that time she begun to
    make water as much as two pumps could free. At noon she lay with
    three streaks heel to starboard. Lat obs'ed, 15 degrees 45 So."

This was off what Cook called Cape Tribulation, and on the two following
days these entries appear:--

    "Light airs and fine weather, which gave us an opportunity to
    carry out boath the bowers, the one on the starboard quarter and
    the other right astern. The spare stream anchor we likewise
    carried out, and got purchases upon all the cables, and hove
    taught upon all the 5 anchors. At 4 it was low water, so far as we
    could judge by the rocks about the ship and part of the shoal
    being dry, which we had not seen before. The rise and fall of the
    water did not appear to exceed 3 or 4 feet. As the tide began to
    rise the leak incresed, which obliged us to set the 3rd pump to
    work, which we should have done the 4th also could we have made it
    deliver any water. The ship now righted, and the leak gained on
    the pumps in such a manner that it became a matter of
    consideration whether we should heave her off or no in case she
    floated, for fear of her going down with us in the deep water; but
    as I thought we should be able to run her ashore, either upon the
    same shoal or upon the main, in case we could not keep her, I
    resolved at all risks to heave her off if possible, and
    accordingly tur'nd as many men to the capstan and windlass as
    could be spar'd from the pumps, and at 20 minutes past ten hove
    her afloat and into deep water." (He did not do this without
    losing his anchors, as he tells us, but)

    "The pumps gain'd on the leak these 4 hours. Some hands employ'd
    sowing oakem, wool, etc., into a sail to fother the ship. Weigh'd
    the coasting anchor and warped out to the S.E., and at 11 got
    under sail, with a light breeze at E.S.E., and stood in for the
    land, having a small boat laying upon the point of the shoal, the
    south point of which at noon bore north, distant one mile. The
    pumps gain'd upon the leak this 4 hours. Light airs and clear
    weather. Standing off the shore in for the main. Got up the main
    topmast and main-yard. Having got the sail ready for fothering the
    ship, we put it over under the starboard fore chains, where we
    suspected she suffer'd most, and soon after the leak decreas'd so
    much as to be kept clear with one pump with ease. This fortunate
    circumstance gave new life to everyone on board. Anchor'd in 17
    fathom water, 5 leagues from the land, and about 3 miles from the

On the 17th they found a harbour where they hove the ship down and
repaired her, when it was found that--

    "One of the holes, which was big enough to have sunk us if we had
    had eight pumps instead of four, and had been able to keep them
    incessantly going, was in great measure plugged up by a fragment
    of the rock, which, after having made the wound, was left sticking
    in it; so that the water which had at first gained upon our pumps
    was what came in at the interstices between the stone and the
    edges of the hole that received it."

Endeavour River, Cape Flattery, Providential Channel, and other names on
the chart commemorate the accident; yet after all this trouble Cook
continued his survey, sailing safely through the cluster of rocks between
New Guinea and the mainland. This passage and the Barrier Reef are
probably two of the most dangerous places in the world, and more vessels
have been wrecked on that bit of coast between the southern end of the
Barrier Reef and the Indian Ocean side of Torres Straits than on any
similar stretch of coast-line anywhere.

So far the voyage had been without other disaster than this, but on the
way back the _Endeavour_ put into Batavia to refresh, and in a letter to
the Secretary of the Admiralty, dated the 9th of May, 1771, Cook wrote:--

    "That uninterrupted state of health we have all along enjoyed was,
    soon after our arrival at Batavia, succeeded by a general
    sickness, which delayed us there so much that it was the 20th of
    December before we were able to leave that place. We were
    fortunate enough to loose but few men at Batavia, but on our
    passage from thence to the Cape of Good Hope we had twenty-four
    men died, all, or most of them, of the bloody flux. This fatal
    disorder reign'd in the ship with such obstinacy that medicines,
    however skilfully administered, had not the least effect. I
    arrived at the Cape on the 14th of March, and quitted it again on
    the 14th of April, and on the 1st of May arrived at St. Helena,
    where I joined His Maj.'s ship _Portland_, which I found ready to
    sail with the convoy";

and on the 12th of July he brought up in the Downs, reporting one more
death--that of Lieutenant Hicks.

For his services Cook was promoted a step. His after-life and death need
no mention here, and although in both his second and third voyages he
touched at New Zealand and Tasmania, his connection with Australia
practically ends with the _Endeavour_ voyage. But a word or two about the
_Endeavour's_ officers, taken from documents recently obtained by the New
South Wales Government, which perhaps contain some things new to many

In the Record Office, London, there are no fewer than ten logs of Cook's
voyage; three of these are anonymous, but six of them are signed by the
ship's officers, and one, from circumstantial evidence, is no doubt by
Green, the astronomer. The signed logs are by Hicks, Cook's first
lieutenant; Forwood, the gunner; and Pickersgill, Clerke, Wilkinson, and
Bootie, mates. Hicks, as we have seen, died on the passage home; Forwood,
after the _Endeavour's_ return, is not heard of again. Pickersgill was
promoted to be master on the death of that officer (Robert Molineux) in
April, 1771. He had previously served as a midshipman under Wallis in
1766-1788, and he served again under Cook in the _Resolution_ as third
lieutenant. On the return of Cook from his second voyage, Pickersgill was
appointed commander of the _Lion_, and sent to survey Baffin's Bay, but he
was relieved of the command early in 1777, and then we lose sight of him.
Wilkinson also had served under Wallis, but he died soon after the return
of the _Endeavour_, and Bootie died on the way home.

The best-known of these log-writers is Charles Clerke. Though only a
youngster, he had seen much service. When the Seven Years' War in 1756
broke out, he was, at fifteen years of age, serving on a man-of-war. He
was on the _Bellona_ in her celebrated engagement with the _Courageux_,
off Vigo, in 1761, and he accompanied Byron in the _Dolphin_, afterwards
serving in America, where it is probable Cook first met him. Consequent on
the many deaths, Clerke was made third lieutenant of the _Endeavour_ after
the ship left Batavia, and Cook, referring to his appointment, wrote to
the Admiralty that Clerke was a young man well worthy of the step. He
again served with Cook as second lieutenant of the _Resolution_, and in
Cook's third voyage he was captain of the _Discovery_ and second in
command of the expedition. When Cook was killed on February 14th, 1779, he
took charge, but only survived his superior until the 22nd of August. He
died off the Kamschatka coast, and was buried at the harbour of St. Peter
and St. Paul. His shipmates erected a board with an inscription upon it
over his grave; and La Pérouse, when in 1787 he visited the spot, caused
the board to be replaced by a copper plate, on which the inscription was

In a volume of the _New South Wales Records_ is printed for the first
time a batch of letters from Clerke to Sir Joseph Banks, and these
documents so well depict poor Clerke's cheery disposition, notwithstanding
that he was suffering from a fear of the King's Bench, and, what was more
serious, the sad disease which ended in his death, that we may be pardoned
for reproducing extracts from them. The first was written just before
Clerke sailed with Cook on that fatal third voyage as commander of the

    "DEAR SIR,--I am very sorry to inform you that I am fairly cast
    away. The damnation Bench of Justices fell out among themselves,
    upset and fairly frustrated the friendly intentions of Sir
    Fletcher Norton, &c., wrote a rascally letter, hoping that I would
    not find any inconvenience from it, and put off the adjournment to
    Monday se'nnight. Now, you know, this is quite beyond our reach;
    it seems the whole legends of the Bench do not furnish such
    another incident. Indeed, there's a fatality attends my every
    undertaking; those people whom I most honour and esteem, that
    favour me with the name of friend--to them I become a trouble and
    burthen. However, though we cannot help misfortunes, we can help
    deserving them, and I am determined that want of gratitude and
    attention shall never be an accusation against me; therefore I'm
    resolved to decamp without beat of drum and, if I can, outsail the
    Israelites, get to sea, and make every return in my power. I think
    I had better write to Lord Sandwich to thank him, as I cannot now
    wait upon him--for my visitations must be very private--and ask
    him if he has any orders for me. Do tell me what I must do on that
    head, and if you would have me wait on you ere I depart, &c., &c.,
    and believe me in prosperity or adversity.

    "Yours, &c.,


This is followed by another, written on the evening of the same day, in
which he says:--

    "I this day received a letter from Lord Sandwich, acquainting me
    he shall certainly order the _Discovery_ to sea very soon, in
    short giving me to understand that if I cannot leave town by the
    10th or 11th instant I must give up all. Now, that completes the
    wretchedness of my situation. I find the Jews are exasperated and
    determined to spare no pains to arrest me if they could once catch
    me out of the rules of the Bench; this, you know, would be
    striking the finishing stroke. Let me, my good friend, entreat the
    influence of your friendship here. I shall certainly be cleared
    the 16th or 18th instant, and shall then be happy."

He got away all right, and on November 23rd, 1776, wrote from the Cape of
Good Hope:--

    "Here I am hard and fast moor'd alongside my old friend Capt'n
    Cook, so that our battles with the Israelites cannot now have any
    ill effects upon our intending attack upon the North Pole. I think
    I acquainted you from Plymouth, on the 1st of August, that I was
    getting under-way; I then got a good outset with       [Sidenote: 1779]
    a fresh easterly breeze, and made a very good passage to within
    a few leagues of this land without any kind of accident befalling
    us.... We shall now sail in a very few days, and return to the old
    trade of exploring, so can only say adieu, adieu, my very good
    friend. Be assured that, happen what will, it is wholly out of
    the power of durance of time or length of space in the least to
    alleviate that sense of gratitude your goodness has inspired; but,
    indeed, I shall ever endeavour upon all and every occasion to acquit
    myself," etc.

The next letter is a pathetic farewell to his friend, written on the 17th
of August, 1779, five days before the author's death:--

    "MY EVER-HONOURED FRIEND,--The disorder I was attacked with in the
    King's Bench Prison has proved consumptive, with which I have
    battled with various success, although without one single day's
    health, since I took leave of you in Burlington Street; it is now
    so far got the better of me that I am not able to turn myself in
    my bed, so that my stay in this world must be of very short
    duration. However, I hope my friends will have no occasion to
    blush in owning themselves such, for I have most perfectly and
    justly done my duty to my country as far as my abilities would
    enable me, for where that has been concerned the attention to my
    health, which I was most sensible was in the most imminent danger,
    has never swerved me a single half-mile out of the road of duty;
    so that I flatter myself I shall leave behind that character that
    it has ever been my utmost ambition to attain, which is that of an
    honest and faithful servant to the public whom I had undertaken
    to serve.

    "I have made you the best collections of all kinds of matter I
    could that have fallen in our way in the course of the voyage; but
    they are by no means so complete as they would have been had my
    health enabled me to pay more attention to them. I hope, however,
    you will find many among them worthy of your attention and
    acceptance. In my will I have bequeathed you the whole of every
    kind. There are great abundance, so that you will have ample

    "I must beg you to present my warmest and most affectionate
    compliments to Dr. Solander, and assure him I leave the world
    replete with the most social ideas for his much-esteemed and
    ever-respected friendship.

    "I must beg leave to recommend to your notice Mr. Will. Ellis, one
    of the surgeon's mates, who will furnish you with some drawings
    and accounts of the various birds which will come to your
    possession. He has been very useful to me in your service in that
    particular, and is, I believe, a very worthy young man, and, I
    hope, will prove worthy of any services that may be in your way to
    confer upon him.

    "The two clerks of the two ships, Mr. W. Dewar and Mr. Greg
    Santham, have, I believe, been very honest servants in their
    stations, and having by Captain Cook's (and very soon by my death)
    lost those to whom they looked up to for protection, are, I fear,
    destitute of friends. If it should be in your power to render them
    any services, I flatter myself they will be worthy of such

    "If I should recollect anything more to say to you, I will
    trouble my friend Mr. King with it, who is so kind as to be my
    amanuensis on this occasion. He is my very dear and particular
    friend, and I will make no apology in recommending him to a share
    in your friends ship [sic: friendship], as I am perfectly assured
    of his being
  deserving of it, as in that also of the worthy doctors.

    "Now, my dear and honoured friend, I must bid you a final adieu.
    May you enjoy many happy years in this world, and in the end
    attain that fame your indefatigable industry so richly deserves.
    These are most sincerely the warmest and sincerest wishes of your
    devoted, affectionate, and departing servant,


It will take nothing from the fame of Cook to call his connection with the
discovery of Australia an accident. He himself says that, having
circumnavigated New Zealand, "we intended to return home by the Cape of
Good Hope or by Cape Horn to determine the question of a southern
continent," but the season of the year was against this course, and "we
ultimately resolved to return by the East Indies. With this in view, we
resolved to steer west till we should fall in with the coast of New
Holland, and then follow that coast to the north till we should arrive at
its northern extremity."

Having adopted this course and having reached the coast, Cook made the
very best use of his time, and surveyed it as probably no other man then
living would have done, but that he did so is unquestionably due to the
fact that the season did not admit of the old regulation pursuit of
explorers--the search for the solution of the southern continent problem.

CHAPTER IV.                                                [Sidenote: 1779]


Captain Cook's "discovery" of New Holland was turned to no account until a
generation later, and to Sir Joseph Banks more than to any other man
belongs the credit of the suggestion. In 1779 a commission of the House of
Commons was appointed to inquire into the question of transportation,
then, in consequence of the loss of the American colonies, an important
problem needing a speedy solution. At this period, indeed up to a much
later time, the English prison administration was notoriously bad. The
gaols were crowded and filthy, and there was no discipline; no system
governed them other than the system of rascality practised by many of the

Mr. Banks (as he then was) gave evidence before the House of Commons, and
strongly urged the establishment of a penal colony at Botany Bay, giving
his opinion, of course, as the botanist who had accompanied Cook and had
seen what prospect there was of establishing a settlement at New Holland.
Banks from this time till his death took a keen interest in the New South
Wales colonizing scheme, and had much influence for good in the future of
the colony. He was a man of independent means, and there is not the
slightest reason nor the least evidence to the contrary, to doubt his
perfect disinterestedness in all that he did. But when President of the
Royal Society the caricaturists and the satirists had little mercy on him,
believing him more courtier than scientist. Peter Pindar's _Sir Joseph
Banks and the Emperor of Morocco_ is only one of the many satires of which
Banks was the principal victim.

The proposals of one Jean Maria Matra and of Admiral Sir George Young for
forming new colonies to take the places of those lost to us in America,
with the evidence and subsequent advocacy of Banks, ultimately led to the
Government's decision to colonize New South Wales. But it was not until
1786 that that decision was reached, and a year later still when Captain
Arthur Phillip was given a commission as captain of the expedition and
governor of the new colony.

All that is known of Phillip prior to his appointment is contained in a
semi--official account of the expedition called _Phillip's Voyage,_
published about a hundred years ago. We are here told that his father was
a German teacher of languages who settled in London, his mother the widow
of Captain Herbert, of the royal navy, and that young Phillip was born in
Bread Street, in the parish of All Hallows, London.

It may be presumed that, by the influence of his mother's connections
through her first marriage, he was sent to Greenwich School, and thence
into the navy, where he began his career under Captain Michael Everett at
the outbreak of war in 1755.

At twenty-three he was serving as a lieutenant in the _Stirling Castle_,
and later on, when peace came, after a turn of farming in the New Forest,
he volunteered to serve under the Portuguese Government. Leaving the
Portuguese service with distinction, he rejoined the English navy in 1778,
and the Admiralty at once made him master and commander of the _Basilisk_,
fireship, soon afterwards appointing him post captain. He commanded the
_Ariadne_, frigate, later on the _Europe_, and was then selected for the
command of the first fleet to New South Wales. All the remarkable story of
the colonizing expedition does not belong to this chapter on Phillip, but
it runs through the lives of the four naval governors.

Lord Sydney, the Home Secretary of the day, selected Phillip, and Lord
Howe, then at the head of the Admiralty, expressed this opinion on the

    "I cannot say the little knowledge I have of Captain Phillip would
    have led me to select him for a service of this complicated
    nature; but as you are satisfied of his ability, and I conclude he
    will be taken under your direction, I presume it will not be
    unreasonable to move the King for having His Majesty's pleasure
    signified to the Admiralty for these purposes as soon as you see
    proper, so that no time may be lost in making the requisite
    preparations for the voyage."

It took a long time to prepare the expedition, and when the fleet sailed
from Spithead on May 13th, 1787, the transports had been lying off the
Motherbank with their human freight on board for months before; yet,
through the neglect of the shore officials, they sailed without clothing
for the women prisoners and without enough                 [Sidenote: 1787]
cartridges to do much more than fill the pouches of the marine guard.

There were eleven sail altogether: the _Sirius_, frigate, the _Supply_,
tender, six transports, and three storeships. The frigate was an old East
Indiaman, the _Berwick_. She had been lying in Deptford Yard, had been
burnt almost to the water's edge not long before, and was patched up for
the job. The _Supply_ was a brig, a bad sailer, yet better in that respect
than the _Sirius_, though much overmasted; she was commanded by Lieutenant

The expedition was a big affair, and it seems curious enough nowadays that
so little interest was taken in it. There were more than a thousand people
on board, and one would have thought that if the departure of the convicts
did not create excitement, the sailing of the bluejackets and the guard of
about 200 marines bound for such an unknown part of the world would have
set Portsmouth at any rate in a stir. But the Fitzherbert scandal, the
attack on Warren Hastings, and such-like stirring events were then town
talk, and at that period there were no special correspondents or, for the
matter of that, any newspapers worth mentioning, to work up popular
excitement over the event.

On the way out the fleet called at Teneriffe, at Rio, and at the Cape to
refresh; and Phillip's old friends, the Portuguese, gave him a hearty
welcome and much assistance at the Brazils. When the ships reached Botany
Bay in January, 1788, the voyage of thirty-six weeks had ended without
serious misfortune of any kind. Lieutenant Collins, of the Marines,
Judge-Advocate and historian of the expedition, thus sums up the case:--

    "Thus, under the blessing of God, was happily completed in eight
    months and one week a voyage which, before it was undertaken, the
    mind hardly dared to contemplate, and on which it was impossible
    to reflect without some apprehension as to its termination. This
    fortunate completion of it, however, afforded, even to ourselves,
    as much matter of surprise as of general satisfaction; for in the
    above space of time we had sailed 5021 leagues, had touched at the
    American and African continents, and had at last rested within a
    few days' sail of the antipodes of our native country without
    meeting with any accidents in a fleet of eleven sail, nine of
    which were merchantmen that had never before sailed in that
    distant and imperfectly explored ocean. And when it is considered
    that there was on board a large body of convicts, many of whom
    were embarked in a very sickly state, we might be deemed
    peculiarly fortunate that of the whole number of all descriptions
    of persons coming to form the new settlement only thirty-two had
    died since their leaving England, among whom were to be included
    one or two deaths by accidents, although previous to our departure
    it was generally conjectured that before long we should have been
    converted into an hospital ship. But it fortunately happened
    otherwise; and the spirits visible in every eye were to be
    ascribed to the general joy and satisfaction which immediately
    took place on finding ourselves arrived at that port which had
    been so much and so long the theme of our conversation."

[Illustration: CAPTAIN ARTHUR PHILLIP. From an engraving after a portrait
by F. Wheatly, prefixed to "The Voyage of Governor Phillip to Botany Bay"
[London, 1789]. _To face p_. 78.]

To understand fully what Phillip's good management had effected, without
going into detail, it may be said at once that no succeeding voyage, in
spite of the teachings of experience, was made with such immunity from
sickness or mutiny. The second voyage, generally spoken of as that of the
second fleet, for example, was so conducted that Judge-Advocate Collins
says of it:--

    "The appearance of those prisoners who did not require medical
    assistance was lean and emaciated. Several of these miserable
    people died in the boats as they were rowing on shore or on the
    wharf as they were being lifted out of the boats, both the living
    and the dead exhibiting more horrid spectacles than had ever been
    witnessed in this country. All this was to be attributed to
    confinement, and that of the worst species--confinement in a small
    space and in irons, not put on singly, but many of them chained
    together. On board the _Scarborough_ a plan had been formed to
    take the ship.... This necessarily, on that ship, occasioned much
    future circumspection; but Captain Marshall's humanity
    considerably lessened the severity which the insurgents might
    naturally have expected. On board the other ships the masters, who
    had the entire direction of the prisoners, never suffered them to
    be at large on deck, and but a few at a time were permitted there.
    This consequently gave birth to many diseases. It was said that on
    board the _Neptune_ several had died in irons; and what added to
    the horror of such a circumstance was that their deaths were
    concealed for the purpose of sharing their allowance of provisions
    until chance and the offensiveness of a corpse directed a surgeon
    or someone who had authority in the ship to the spot where it

Phillip's commission made him governor-in-chief, and captain-general over
all New South Wales, which then meant from Cape York, in the extreme north
of Australia, to the "south cape of Van Diemen's Land," then, of course,
supposed to be part of the main continent. He was ordered to land at
Botany Bay and there form the settlement, but was given a discretionary
power to change the site, if he considered it unsuitable.

[Illustration: A VIEW OF BOTANY BAY. From an engraving from a drawing by
R. Cleveley, in "The Voyage of Governor Phillip to Botany Bay" [London,

Recognizing the unsuitability of Botany Bay, Phillip, before all the ships
of the first fleet were arrived, set out in an             [Sidenote: 1788]
open boat to explore the coast; and so, sailing northward, entered that
bay only mentioned by Cook in the words before quoted, "abrest of an open
bay," and by Hawkesworth (writing in the first person as Cook) thus:--

    "At this time" (noon May 6th, 1770) "we were between two and three
    miles from the land and abrest of a good bay or harbour, in which
    there appeared to be a good anchorage, and which I called Port

Perhaps, when Phillip's boat passed between the north and south heads of
Port Jackson, he exclaimed what has so often been repeated since: "What a
magnificent harbour!" And so on the 26th January, 1788, Sydney was founded
upon the shores of the most beautiful bay in the world.

Phillip's "eye for ground" told him that the shores of Port Jackson were a
better site for a settlement than the land near Botany Bay, but he had no
sooner landed his people than the need for better soil than Sydney
afforded was apparent. Then began a series of land expeditions into the
interior, in which, with such poor means as these pioneers possessed, the
country was penetrated right to the foot of the Blue Mountains. The first
governor, despite the slight foothold he had established at Sydney--little
better such a home than the deck of a ship--persistently searched for good
land, and before his five years of office had expired agricultural
settlement was fairly under way.

On the seaboard, although he was almost without vessels (scarcely a decent
open boat could be mustered among the possessions of the colonists), with
the boats of the _Sirius_ the coast was searched by Phillip in person as
well as by his junior officers.

Major Ross, who commanded the Marines, and who was also
lieutenant-governor, described the settlement thus:--

    "In the whole world there is not a worse country than what we have
    yet seen of this. All that is contiguous to us is so very barren
    and forbidding, that it may with truth be said, 'Here nature is
    reversed, and if not so, she is nearly worn out'; for almost all
    the seed we have put in the ground has rotted, and I have no doubt
    it will, like the wood of this vile country, when burned or rotten
    turn to sand;"

Captain Tench, one of Ross' officers, wrote:--

    "The country is very wretched and totally incapable of yielding to
    Great Britain a return for colonising it.... The dread of
    perishing by famine stares us in the face.             [Sidenote: 1792]
    The country contains less resources than any in the known world;"

and the principal surgeon, White, described the colony in these words:--

    "I cannot, without neglect of my duty to my country, refrain from
    declaring that if a 'favourable picture' has been drawn, it is a
    'gross falsehood and a base deception.'"

Yet shortly before Phillip left it, in 1792, Collins says:--

    "In May the settlers were found in general to be doing very well,
    their farms promising to place them shortly in a state of
    independence of the public stores in the articles of provisions
    and grain. Several of the settlers who had farms at or near
    Parramatta, notwithstanding the extreme drought of the season
    preceding the sowing of their corn, had such crops that they found
    themselves enabled to take off from the public store some one, and
    others two convicts, to assist in preparing their grounds for the
    next season."

In June, according to the same authority, the ground sown with wheat and
prepared for maize was of sufficient area, even if the yield per acre did
not exceed that for the previous season, to produce enough grain for a
year's consumption.

The last returns relating to agriculture, prepared before Phillip left,
show that the total area under cultivation was 1540 acres, and the
previous year's returns show that the area had doubled as a result of the
year's work. Besides this, considerable progress had been made with public
buildings; and the convict population, which by the arrival of more
transports had now reached nearly 4000 souls, were slowly but surely
settling down as colonists.

With a thousand people to govern, in the fullest meaning of the word, and
a desolate country, absolutely unknown to the exiles, to begin life in,
Phillip's work was cut out. But, more than this, the population was
chiefly composed of the lowest and worst criminals of England; famine
constantly stared the governor in the face, and his command was increased
by a second and third fleet of prisoners; storeships, when they were sent,
were wrecked; many of Phillip's subordinates did their duty indifferently,
often hindered his work, and persistently recommended the home Government
to abandon the attempt to colonize. Sum up these difficulties, remember
that they were bravely and uncomplainingly overcome, and the character of
Phillip's administration can then in some measure be understood.

With the blacks the governor soon made friends, and such moments as
Phillip allowed himself for leisure from the care of his own people he
chiefly devoted in an endeavour to improve the state of the native race.

AUGUST, 1788. Drawn by E. Dayes from a sketch by J. Hunter. From "An
Historical Journal of Transactions at Port Jackson," by Captain John
Hunter. _To face p_.84.]

As soon as the exiles were landed he married up as many of his male
prisoners as could be induced to take wives from the female convicts,
offered them inducements to work, and swiftly punished the lazy and
incorrigible--severely, say the modern democratic writers, but all the
same mildly as punishments went in those days.

When famine was upon the land he shared equally the short commons of the
public stores; and when "Government House" gave a dinnerparty, officers
took their own bread in their pockets that they might have something to

As time went on he established farms, planned a town of wide, imposing
streets (a plan afterwards departed from by his successors, to the
everlasting regret of their successors), and introduced a system of land
grants which has ever since formed the basis of the colony's land laws,
although politicians and lawyers have too long had their say in
legislation for Phillip's plans to be any longer recognizable or the
existing laws intelligible.[B]

[Footnote B: A leader of the Bar in New South Wales, an eminent Q.C. of
the highest talent, has publicly declared (and every honest man agrees
with him) that the existing land laws are unintelligible to anyone, lawyer
or layman.]

The peculiar fitness of Phillip for the task imposed on him was, there is
little doubt, due largely to his naval training, and no naval officer has
better justified Lord Palmerston's happily worded and well-deserved
compliment to the profession, "Whenever I want a thing well done in a
distant part of the world; when I want a man with a good head, a good
heart, lots of pluck, and plenty of common-sense, I always send for a
captain of the navy."

A captain of a man-of-war then, as now, began at the bottom of the ladder,
learning how to do little things, picking up such knowledge of detail as
qualified him to teach others, to know what could be done and how it ought
to be done. In all professions this rule holds good, but on shipboard men
acquire something more. On land a man learns his particular business in
the world; at sea his ship is a man's world, and on the completeness of
the captain's knowledge of how to feed, to clothe, to govern, his people
depended then, and in a great measure now depends, the comfort, the lives
even, of seamen. So that, being trained in this self-dependence--in the
problem of supplying food to men, and in the art of governing them, as
well as in the trade of sailorizing--the sea-captain ought to make the
best kind of governor for a new and desolate country. If your sea-captain
has brains, has a mind, in fact, as well as a training, then he ought to
make the ideal king.

Phillip's despatches contain passages that strikingly show his peculiar
qualifications in both these respects. His capacity for detail and
readiness of resource were continually demonstrated, these qualifications
doubtless due to his sea-training; his sound judgment of men and things,
his wonderful foresight, which enabled him to predict the great future of
the colony and to so govern it as to hold this future ever in view, were
qualifications belonging to the _man_, and were such that no professional
training could have given.

Barton, in his _History of New South Wales from the Records_, incomparably
the best work on the subject, says: "The policy of the Government in his
day consisted mainly of finding something to eat." This is true so far as
it goes, but Barton himself shows what finding something to eat meant in
those days, and Phillip's despatches prove that, although the food
question was the practical every-day problem to be grappled with, he, in
the midst of the most harassing famine-time, was able to look beyond when
he wrote these words: "This country will yet be the most valuable
acquisition Great Britain has ever made."

In future chapters we shall go more particularly into the early life of
the colony and see how the problems that harassed Phillip's administration
continued long after he had returned to England; we shall then see how
immeasurably the first governor was superior to the men who followed him.
And it is only by such comparison that a just estimate of Phillip can be
made, for he was a modest, self-contained man, making no complaints in his
letters of the difficulties to be encountered, making no boasts of his
success in overcoming them. The three sea-captains who in turn followed
him did their best to govern well, taking care in their despatches that
the causes of their non-success should be duly set forth, but these
documents also show that much of their trouble was of their own making. In
the case of Phillip, his letters to the Home Office show, and every
contemporary writer and modern Australian               [Sidenote: 1801-14]
historian proves, that in no single instance did a lack of any quality of
administrative ability in him create a difficulty, and that every problem
of the many that during his term of office required solution was solved by
his sound common-sense method of grappling with it.

He was wounded by the spear of a black, thrown at him in a
misunderstanding, as he himself declared, and he would not allow the
native on that account to be punished. This wound, the hard work and
never-ending anxiety, seriously injured the governor's health. He applied
for leave of absence, and when he left the colony had every intention of
returning to continue his work, but his health did not improve enough for
this. The Government accepted his resignation with regret, and appointed
him to the command of the _Swiftsure_, with a special pension for his
services in New South Wales of £500 a year; in 1801 he was promoted
Rear-Admiral of the Blue, in 1804 Rear-Admiral of the White, in 1805
Rear-Admiral of the Red, in 1809 Vice-Admiral of the White, and on July
31st, 1810, Vice-Admiral of the Red.

He died at Bath on August 31st, 1814, and was buried in Bathampton Church.
For many years those interested in the subject, especially the New South
Wales Government, spent much time in searching for his burial-place, which
was only discovered by the Vicar of Bathampton, the Rev. Lancelot J. Fish,
in December, 1897, after long and persistent research.

Those by whom the services of the silent, hard-working, and self-contained
Arthur Phillip are least appreciated are, curiously enough, the Australian
colonists; and it was not until early in 1897 that a statue to him was
unveiled in Sydney. At this very time, it is sad to reflect, his last
resting-place was unknown. Phillip, like Cook, did his work well and
truly, and his true memorial is the country of which he was practically
the founder.



Admiral Phillip's work was, as we have said, the founding of Australia;
that of Hunter is mainly important for the service he did under Phillip.
From the time he assumed the government of the colony until his return to
England, his career showed that, though he had "the heart of a true
British sailor," as the old song says, he somewhat lacked the head of a

John Hunter was born at Leith in 1737, his father being a well-known
shipmaster sailing out of that port, while his mother was of a good
Edinburgh family, one of her brothers having served as provost of that
city. Young Hunter made two or three voyages with his father at an age so
young that when shipwrecked on the Norwegian coast a peasant woman took
him home in her arms, and seeing what a child he was, put him to bed
between two of her daughters.

He had an elder brother, William, who gives a most interesting account of
himself in vol. xii. of the _Naval Chronicle_ (1805). William saw some
very remarkable service in his forty-five years at sea in the royal and
merchant navies. Both brothers knew and were friendly with Falconer, the
sea-poet, and John was shipmate in the _Royal George_ with Falconer, who
was a townsman of theirs. The brothers supplied many of the particulars of
the poet's life, written by Clarke, and the name Falconer in connection
with both Hunters often occurs in the _Naval Chronicle_.

After Hunter, senior, was shipwrecked, John was sent to his uncle, a
merchant of Lynn, who sent the boy to school, where he became acquainted
with Charles Burney, the musician. Dr. Burney wanted to make a musician of
him, and Hunter was nothing loth, but the uncle intended the boy for the
Church, and sent him to the Aberdeen University. There his thoughts once
more turned to the sea, and he was duly entered in the _Grampus_ as
captain's servant in 1754, which of course means that he was so rated on
the books in the fashion of the time. After obtaining his rating as A.B.,
and then as midshipman, he passed his examination as lieutenant in
February, 1760; but it was not until twenty                [Sidenote: 1760]
years later, when he was forty-three, that he received his lieutenant's
commission, having in the interval served in pretty well every quarter of
the globe as midshipman and master's mate. In 1757 he was under Sir
Charles Knowles in the expedition against Rochefort; in 1759 he served
under Sir Charles Saunders at Quebec; in 1756 he was master of the
_Eagle_, Lord Howe's flagship, so skilfully navigating the vessel up the
Delaware and Chesapeake and in the defence of Sandy Hook that Lord Howe
recommended him for promotion in these words:--

    "Mr. John Hunter, from his knowledge and experience in all the
    branches of his profession, is justly entitled to the character of
    a distinguished officer."

It was some years, however, before Hunter was given a chance, which came
to him when serving in the West Indies, under Sir George Rodney, who
appointed him a lieutenant, and the appointment was confirmed by the

In 1782 he was again under Lord Howe as first lieutenant of the _Victory_,
and soon after was given the command of the _Marquis de Seignelay_. Then
came the Peace of Paris, and Hunter's next appointment was to the
_Sirius_. There is very little doubt from a study of the _Naval
Chronicle's_ biographies and from the letters of Lord Howe that, if that
nobleman had had his way, Hunter would have been the first governor of New
South Wales, and it is equally likely that, if Hunter had been appointed
to the chief command, the history of the expedition would have had to be
written very differently, for brave and gallant as he was, he was a man
without method.

When Phillip was appointed to govern the colonizing expedition and to
command the _Sirius_, Hunter was posted as second captain of the frigate,
in order that the ship, when Phillip assumed his shore duties, should be
commanded by a post-captain. A few days after the arrival of the fleet
Hunter set to work, and in the ship's boats thoroughly surveyed Port
Jackson. He was a keen explorer, and besides being one of the party who
made the important discovery of the Hawkesbury river, he charted Botany
and Broken Bays; and his charts as well as land maps, published in a
capital book he wrote giving an account of the settlement, show how well
he did the work.[C]

[Footnote C: _An Historical Journal of the Transactions at Port Jackson,
etc., etc.,_ by John Hunter, Esq., Post-Captain R.N. (London, 1793.)]

In September, 1788, Hunter sailed from Port Jackson        [Sidenote: 1788]
for the Cape of Good Hope, to obtain supplies for the half-starving
colony. On the voyage he formed the opinion that New Holland was separated
from Van Diemen's Land by a strait, an opinion to be afterwards confirmed
in its accuracy by Bass.

The poor old _Sirius_ came in for some bad weather on the trip, and a
glimpse of Hunter's character is given to us in a letter written home by
one of the youngsters (Southwell) under him, who tells us that Hunter,
knowing the importance of delivering stores to the half-famished settlers,
drove the frigate's crazy old hull along so that--

    "we had a very narrow escape from shipwreck, being driven on that
    part of the coast called Tasman's Head in thick weather and hard
    gales of wind, and embay'd, being twelve hours before we got
    clear, the ship forced to be overpressed with sail, and the hands
    kept continually at the pumps, and all this time in the most
    destressing anxiety, being uncertain of our exact situation and
    doubtful of our tackling holding, which has a very long time been
    bad, for had a mast gone, or topsail given way, there was nothing
    to be expected in such boistrous weather but certain death on a
    coast so inhospitable and unknown. And now to reflect, if we had
    not reached the port with that seasonable supply, what could have
    become of this colony? 'Twould have been a most insupportable
    blow, and thus to observe our manifold misfortunes so attemper'd
    with the Divine mercy of these occasions seems, methinks, to
    suggest a comfortable lesson of resignation and trust that there
    are still good things in store, and 'tis a duty to wait in a
    moderated spirit of patient expectation for them. 'Tis worthy of
    remark, the following day (for we cleared this dreaded land about
    2 in the morning, being April the 22nd, 1789), on examining the
    state of the rigging, &c., some articles were so fearfully chafed
    that a backstay or two actually went away or broke."

Soon after came the end of the old ship. She had been sent to Norfolk
Island, with a large proportion of the settlers at Port Jackson, to
relieve the strain on the food supply. The contingent embarked with a
marine guard under Major Ross in the _Sirius_ and the Government brig
_Supply_, and sailed on the 6th of March, 1790. Young Southwell, the
signal midshipman stationed at the solitary look-out on the south head of
Port Jackson, shall tell the rest of the story:--

[Illustration: CAPTAIN JOHN HUNTER. From an engraving in the "Naval
Chronicle" for 1801.] _To face p. 96._

    "Nothing more of these [the two ships] were seen 'till April the
    5th, when the man who takes his station there at daybreak soon
    came down to inform me a sail was in sight. On going up I saw her
    coming up with the land, and judged it to be the _Supply_, but was
    not a little surprised at her returning so soon, and likewise,
    being alone, my mind fell to foreboding an accident; and on
    going down to get ready to wait on the  gov'r          [Sidenote: 1790]
    I desired the gunner to notice if the people mustered thick on her
    decks as she came in under the headland, thinking in my own mind,
    what I afterwards found, that the _Sirius_ was lost. The _Supply_
    bro't an account that on the 19th of March about noon the _Sirius_
    had, in course of loading the boats, drifted rather in with the
    land. On seeing this they of course endeavoured to stand off, but
    the wind being dead on the shore, and the ship being out of trim
    and working unusually bad, she in staying--for she would not go
    about just as she was coming to the wind--tailed the ground with
    the after-part of her keel, and, with two sends of the vast surf
    that runs there, was completely thrown on the reef of dangerous
    rocks called Pt. Ross. They luckily in their last extremity let go
    both anchors and stopper'd the cables securely, and this, 'tho it
    failed of the intention of riding her clear, yet caused her to go
    right stern foremost on the rocks, by which means she lay with her
    bow opposed to the sea, a most happy circumstance, for had she
    laid broadside to, which otherwise she would have had a natural
    tendency to have done, 'tis more than probable she must have
    overset, gone to pieces, and every soul have perish'd.

    "Her bottom bilged immediately, and the masts were as soon cut
    away, and the gallant ship, upon which hung the hopes of the
    colony, was now a complete wreck. They [the _Supply_] brought a
    few of the officers and men hither; the remainder of the ships
    company, together with Captain Hunter, &c., are left there on
    acc't of constituting a number adequate to the provision, and
    partly to save what they possibly can from the wreck. I understand
    that there are some faint hopes, if favor'd with extraordinary
    fine weather, to recover most of the provision, for she carried a
    great quantity there on the part of the reinforcement. The whole
    of the crew were saved, every exertion being used, and all
    assistance received from the _Supply_ and colonists on shore. The
    passengers fortunately landed before the accident, and I will just
    mention to you the method by which the crew were saved. When they
    found that the ship was ruined and giving way upon the beam right
    athwart, they made a rope fast to a drift-buoy, which by the surf
    was driven on shore. By this a stout hawser was convey'd, and
    those on shore made it fast a good way up a pine-tree. The other
    end, being on board, was hove taut. On this hawser was placed the
    heart of a stay (a piece of wood with a hole through it), and to
    this a grating was slung after the manner of a pair of scales. Two
    lines were made fast on either side of the heart, one to haul it
    on shore, the other to haul it on board. On this the shipwreck'd
    seated themselves, two or more at a time, and thus were dragged on
    shore thro' a dashing surf, which broke frequently over their
    heads, keeping them a considerable time under water, some of them
    coming out of the water half drowned and a good deal bruised.
    Captn. Hunter was a good deal hurt, and with repeated seas knock'd
    off the grating, in so much that all the lookers-on feared greatly
    for his letting go; but he got on shore safe, and his hurts are by
    no means dangerous. Many private effects were saved, the sea
    driving them on shore when thrown overboard, but 'twas not always
    so courteous. Much is lost, and many escaped with nothing more
    than they stood in."

Hunter and his crew were left at Norfolk Island            [Sidenote: 1792]
for many weary months before a vessel could be obtained in which to send
them to England, and it was not until the end of the following March--a
year after the loss of their ship--that they sailed from Sydney in the
_Waaksamheyd_, a small Dutch _snow_.[D]

[Footnote D: A favourite rig of that period. A snow was similar to a brig,
except that she carried upon a small spar, just abaft the mainmast, a kind
of trysail, then called the spanker.]

In this miserable little vessel Hunter made a remarkable voyage home, of
which he gives an account in his book. His official letter to the
Secretary of the Admiralty, dated Portsmouth, April 23rd, 1792, tells in a
few words what sort of a passage could be made to England in those days.
He writes:--

    "You will be pleased to inform their lordships that upon my
    arrival from Norfolk Island at Port Jackson (26th February, 1791)
    I found that Governor Phillip had contracted with the master of a
    Dutch _snow_, which had arrived at that port from Batavia with a
    cargo of provisions purchased there for the use of the settlement,
    for a passage to England for the remaining officers and company of
    His Majestie's late ship the _Sirius_, under my command, in
    consequence of which agreement I was directed to embark, and we
    sail'd from Port Jackson on the 27th of March, victuall'd for
    sixteen weeks, and with fifty tons of water on board. We were in
    all on board 123 people, including those belonging to the
    vessel.... We steer'd to the northward, and made New Caledonia 23
    April, and passed to the westward of it. As the master did not
    feel himself qualified to navigate a ship in these unknown seas,
    he had, upon our leaving Port Jackson, requested my assistance,
    which he had. In sailing to the northward we fell in with several
    islands and shoals, the situations of which we determined.... No
    ship that I have heard of having sail'd between New Britain and
    New Ireland since that passage was discovered by Captain Carteret
    in H.M. sloop _Swallow_, I was the more desirous to take that rout
    from his having found two very accessable harbours in New Ireland,
    where we hoped to get a supply of water....

    "We passed thro' the Strait of Macassar, and arrived at Batavia on
    the 27th of September, after a most tedious and destressing
    passage of twenty-six weeks, during a great part of which time we
    had been upon a very small ration of provision. We buried on the
    passage Lieutenant George William Maxwell and one seaman of the
    _Sirius_, with one belonging to the _snow_. My transactions at
    Batavia will be fully seen in the narrative. I left that place on
    the 20th October, and arrived at the Cape on the 17th December,
    but being unable to reach the proper anchorage, I was on the 20th
    driven to sea again, with the loss of two anchors and cables. On
    the 22nd we again reached the bay, with a signal of distress
    flying, and thro' the exertions of Captain Bligh, who was there in
    the _Providence_, we were got into safety, and receiv'd anchors
    and cables from the shore. My people being very sickly, the
    effects of that destructive place Batavia, their slow progress in
    recovery detained me at the Cape longer than I intended to have
    staid. I sailed from Table Bay 18th January, but left five sick
    behind me; anchored at St. Helena 4th February, to complete our
    water, left that island the 13th, and arrived here late last

On the way home the _Waaksamheyd_ got into trouble with the natives of
Mindanao, one of the Dutch Archipelago. The rajah of the place would not
supply refreshment to the vessel, and her master threatened to fire upon
the native canoes, notwithstanding the remonstrances of Hunter. In the
course of the dispute the rajah lost his temper and attacked the
shipmaster, whose life was saved by Hunter, but the quarrel resulted in a
regular engagement between the natives and people on the ship, in which
the crew of the _Sirius_, for their own safety, were compelled to take
part. The canoes were ultimately driven off, with great loss of life to
the people in them, and the Europeans escaped unhurt.

Hunter's experience on this voyage taught him that the proper route home
from Australia was not north about, nor _viâ_ the Cape of Good Hope, but
round the Horn, and he wrote to the Admiralty to that effect, but it was
years later before sailors woke up to the fact. At the Cape of Good Hope
a number of English shipwrecked sailors were prisoners of the Dutch, and
Hunter's spirited remonstrance brought about their release, and for this
he was thanked by the Admiralty. A court-martial was duly held, and Hunter
and the ship's company honourably acquitted of all blame for the loss of
the _Sirius_.

When it became apparent that Phillip's health would not permit him to
return to New South Wales, Hunter (in October, 1793), who was serving as a
volunteer captain in Lord Howe's flagship, the _Queen Charlotte_, applied
for the position of governor of the colony, and four months later he was
given the appointment. Lord Howe, who had been his constant patron, thus
satisfying his desire to give Hunter an important command, and thereby
depriving the sea service of a very able naval officer, neither to the
advantage of Hunter nor the colony he was sent to govern.

"Naval Chronicle" for 1801. _To face p_. 102.]

In the interval between Phillip's departure for England (December, 1792)
and Hunter's arrival in the colony on September 7th, 1795, the settlement
was governed successively by two lieutenant-governors. These two officers
were Major Grose, the commandant of the New South Wales Corps, who ruled
until December, 1794, and Captain Paterson, of the same regiment, who had
charge until the arrival of Hunter. The New South Wales Corps had such an
influence on the lives of these naval governors of Australia that in the
next chapter it will be necessary to give a sketch of this remarkable
regiment; meanwhile it may be merely mentioned that the commanding officer
of the military, during the period of the four New South Wales naval
governors, held a commission as lieutenant-governor, and so took command
in the absence of the governor.

Upon Hunter's arrival he did not at all like the state of affairs. Major
Grose had permitted to grow up a system of trade in which his officers had
secured monopolies, and, as a leading article of this commerce was rum, it
can easily be understood in what a state of disorder Hunter found the
colony. Instead of the prisoners being kept at work cultivating the
ground, the officers of the New South Wales Regiment employed more than a
proper proportion of them in their private affairs; and the consequence
was, the settlement had made little or no progress on the road to
independence--that is, of course, independence in the matter of growing
its food supply, not its politics. Further than this, Grose's methods of
governing a colony and administering its laws were the same as those he
employed in commanding his regiment. He was not able to rise above this;
and under him martial law was practically, if not nominally, the form of
the colony's government. Paterson, his successor, passively carried on
until the arrival of Hunter the same lines as his predecessor; and the
consequence was, the colony existed for the benefit of the officers of the
regiment, who, by huckstering in stores, were rapidly acquiring fortunes.
A few free settlers had already arrived in the colony, and by degrees
emancipated prisoners and emigrants from Great Britain were forming a
small free population, and were beginning to have "interests." Thus there
were slowly growing the elements of a pretty quarrel, a triangular duel,
in which officials, free emigrants, and emancipated convicts had all
interests to serve, and which for many long years after was the constant
bugbear of the governor of the colony.

By the time Hunter arrived there were a number of time-expired prisoners
in the settlement, and these became an increasing and constant danger.
Retreating into the back country, and herding with the blacks, or
thieving from the farmers, they merged into what were known later on as
bushrangers. From these men and the ill-disciplined and gaol-bird soldiers
of the New South Wales Corps the peaceably disposed inhabitants were in
much greater danger than they ever were from the aborigines.

But although Hunter's despatches are full of complaints of the soldiers,
of the want of stores, and the need of honest, free men to cultivate the
soil by way of a leaven to the hundreds of convicts who were arriving
every year, he, like Phillip, believed that New South Wales would
ultimately become a prosperous colony. More than this, it was under Hunter
that Bass and Flinders did most of their surveying; that Shortland
discovered Newcastle; and to no governor more than to Hunter is credit due
for the interest he took in exploration.

Here is a picture of the colony in the time of Hunter's governorship,
painted by certain missionaries who had been driven by the natives of
Tahiti from their island, and who had taken refuge in New South Wales:--

    "His Majesty's ship the _Buffalo_, Captain Kent, being on the eve
    of sailing from the colony for the Cape of Good Hope, we embrace
    the opportunity of confirming our letter to you of the 1st
    September, 1798, by the _Barwell_. Here we have to contend with
    the depravity and corruptions of the human heart heightened and
    confirmed in all its vicious habits by long and repeated
    indulgences of inbred corruption, each one following the bent of
    his own corrupt mind, and countenancing his neighbour in the
    pursuit of sensual gratifications. Here iniquity abounds, and
    those outward gross sins which in Europe would render a person
    contemptible in the public eye, and obnoxious to the civil law,
    are become fashionable and familiar--adultery, fornication, theft,
    drunkenness, extortion, violence, and uncleanness of every kind,
    the natural concomitants of deism and infidelity, which have
    boldly thrown off the mask, and stalk through the colony in the
    open face of the sun, so that it is no uncommon thing to hear a
    person say, 'When I was a Christian, I thought so and so.'"

This is strong, but it is true.

This letter was addressed to the directors of the London Missionary
Society, and many of similar purport written by Johnson and Marsden, the
chaplains of the settlement, are to be found in the records. All these
writers agree on one point: the colony had fallen from grace under the
military administration. Phillip had left it in good order, and Hunter at
the time, these witnesses testified, was doing his best to improve

Lang (not a reliable authority in many things, but to be believed when
not expressing opinions), in his _History of New South Wales_, tells an
anecdote of Hunter which is worth retelling. Captain Hunter was on one
occasion the subject of an anonymous letter addressed by some disreputable
colonist to the Duke of Portland, then Home Secretary. (There was no
Colonial Secretary in those days.) The Duke sent back the letter without
comment to Hunter, who one day handed it to an officer who was dining with
him. "You will surely notice this?" said the officer. "No," replied
Hunter. "The man has a family, and I don't want to ruin them."

It was this good-nature, this disinclination to fight his enemies to the
bitter end, that ultimately had much to do with Hunter's recall. A certain
Captain John MacArthur, of the New South Wales Corps, of whom we shall
presently hear very much, was, when Hunter arrived, filling the civil post
of Inspector of Public Works. He was also a settler in the full meaning of
the word, owning many acres and requiring many assigned servants to work
them and to look after his flocks and herds, and from some cause connected
with these civil occupations he came into collision with the governor.
This presently led to much correspondence between the Home Office, the
governor, and MacArthur. In these letters Hunter and his subordinate say
very unkind things of each other, which nowadays may well be forgotten.
The settlement was so small, the life was such an uneventful one, that it
would be wonderful indeed if men did not quarrel, and these two men were
naturally antagonistic to each other.

Hunter was an old-fashioned naval officer, sixty years of age, and fifty
of those years had been spent in disinterested service to his country, "a
pleasant, sensible old man," says a young ship's officer, writing home to
his father; and in another letter, published in a newspaper of 1798, we
are told that "much may be expected from Captain Hunter, whose virtue and
integrity is as conspicuous as his merit."

MacArthur was a comparatively young man, who had come to the colony less
with the intention of soldiering than of making himself a home. He was an
excellent colonist and a perfectly honourable man, but he was the very
worst kind of a subordinate that a man with Hunter's lack of strong
personality could have under him. MacArthur wanted to develop the
resources of the colony and improve his farm at the same time, and that he
had it in him to do these things is proved by after-events. The name of
MacArthur, the father of the merino wool industry, is the best-remembered
name in Australia to-day; but poor old Hunter could not recognise the
soldier man's merits, and so he added to his legitimate quarrel with the
meaner hucksters of his officials the quarrel with the enterprising
MacArthur; and, although there is no written evidence to prove it, there
is little doubt that MacArthur's letters to England had due effect upon
the minds of the home authorities.

The Duke of Portland wrote to Hunter early in 1799 requesting him to
afford the fullest refutation of a number of charges that had been made
against the administration of the colony. Wrote the Duke:--

    "I proceed to let you know that it is asserted that the price of
    necessary articles is of late doubled; that the same wheat is
    received into the Government stores at ten shillings per bushel
    which the settler is under the necessity of selling to the
    huckster at three shillings; that spirits or other articles are
    purchased by the officers of His Majesty's forces in New South
    Wales, and retailed by them at the most exorbitant prices to the
    lowest order of the settlers and convicts; that the profit on such
    articles is often at the rate of one hundred shillings for one;
    that this sort of traffic is not confined to the officers, but is
    carried on in the Government House, although it is not affirmed
    that you have any participation in such proceedings; that the
    officers and favoured individuals are allowed to send large
    quantities of grain into the Government stores, whilst those who
    have only the ability to raise small crops are refused, and
    consequently are obliged to sell their produce to hucksters at the
    low rate above mentioned."

Now many of these allegations were true, for Hunter himself had written
repeatedly complaining of the existence of such abuses, and had been
answered, "Well, put a stop to them." Then he would publish a "Public
Order" or some similar document telling the hucksters they were not to do
these things; the offenders would go on offending, and Hunter would go on
publishing more "Public Orders."

Hunter received the above letter from Portland in November, 1799. Before
he could write a reply to it, the Duke wrote him another letter. There
were several pages relating to details of administration; but it might
have been written by a woman, for the last paragraph contained the
all-important part in these words:--

    "Having now made all the observations which appear to me to be
    necessary on the points contained in your several despatches which
    are now before me, it is with my very sincere concern that I find
    myself obliged to add that I feel myself called upon by the sense
    of the duty which I owe to the situation in            [Sidenote: 1800]
    which I have the honour to be placed to express my disapprobation
    of the manner in which the government of the settlement has been
    administered by you in so many respects; that I am commanded to
    signify you the King's pleasure to return to this kingdom by the
    first safe conveyance which offers itself after the arrival of
    Lieutenant-Governor King, who is authorized by His Majesty to take
    upon him the government of that settlement immediately on your
    departure from it."

The poor old governor was very indignant. He denounced in strong language
the "anonymous assassin" who he thinks accused him to His Grace of
conniving at the trading he was endeavouring to suppress.

    "Can it be suppos'd, my lord, that a man at my time of life,
    holding the rank I have the honour to be arriv'd at in the
    profession I have been bred in, and to which I have risen by
    virtue of a character never yet stain'd by one mean, base, or
    dishonourable action--can it be conceived that after having by a
    life truly and sincerely devoted to the service of my sovereign,
    after having spent forty-six years of that life in constant and
    active employment in all the quarters of the world, during which I
    have risen thro' all the ranks and gradations of my profession and
    at last arriv'd at the highly flattering and exalted office of
    being appointed the representative of His Majesty in this remote
    part of his dominions--can it be believ'd, my lord, that a man
    possessing a single spark of virtuous principles could be
    prevailed on thro' any latent object, any avaricious view, by any
    act so mean, so low, so contemptible, as that of which this
    anonymous villain has dared to suppose me capable, to bring
    disgrace upon that elevated situation? No, my lord, I thank God I
    possess a share of pride sufficient to keep me far above any mean
    or degrading action. I am satisfied with what the Crown allows me,
    altho' that, in my situation in this expensive country, is small
    enough, yet, my lord, I am satisfied, nor do I conceive it
    consistent with the dignity of my office to endeavour in any way
    whatever to gain more, were it even in a less censurable manner
    than that which has been mention'd. Let me live upon bread and
    water with a pure and unpolluted conscience, a fair and
    respectable character, in preference to rolling in wealth obtained
    by such infamous, such shameful, such ignominious means as this
    letter-writer alludes to."

It is a long while ago since this letter was written by a rough old
sailor, and its quaint wording may raise a smile, but Hunter was very much
in earnest; and if his failure to govern convicts and "officers and
gentlemen" who traded in rum is to count against him, leaving but a
contemptuous pity for a weak old man as an impression on the mind, go back
to his sea-days, when he fought the crazy old _Sirius_ through a hurricane
to bring food to these shore-people, and remember him for this closing
anecdote of his life:--

In 1801, soon after his arrival in England, Hunter    [Sidenote: 1801-1821]
commanded the _Venerable_ (74). He was cruising off Torbay, when a man
fell overboard. Hunter attempted to put the ship about to pick him up; she
missed stays, ran ashore, and became a wreck. At the court-martial (at
which Hunter was honourably acquitted) he was asked whether he thought he
was justified in putting the ship about in such circumstances, to which
question he replied, "I consider the life of a British seaman of more
value than any ship in His Majesty's navy."

When he returned to England, he was granted a pension, for his services as
governor, of £300 per annum; was promoted rear-admiral in October, 1807,
and became vice-admiral of the Red in July, 1810. He died in Judd Street,
London, in March, 1821, aged eighty-three, and was buried in Hackney
churchyard, where a tombstone with a long inscription records his



The service of the Marines in the colonization of Australia was, as it
always has been, _per mare, per terram_, such as reflected the highest
credit upon the corps. They were not "Royal" in those days, nor were they
light infantry; the first title came to them in 1802, when their facings
were changed from white to royal blue, and it was not until 1855 that they
were designated light infantry.

The Marine force in the first fleet under Captain Phillip numbered,
including women and children, 253 persons, made up of a major commanding,
1 judge-advocate, 2 captains, 2 captain-lieutenants, 9 first lieutenants,
3 second lieutenants, 1 adjutant, 1 quarter-master, 12 sergeants, 12
corporals, 8 drummers, 160 privates, 30 women, and 12 children. The
detachment was drawn from the Portsmouth and Plymouth divisions in equal
numbers. This expedition to Botany Bay was a service more remote from home
than any the corps had before been engaged in, and the men so looked upon
it, as may be seen from the following tedious memorial, which one company
addressed to the officer commanding:--

    "We, the marines embarked on board the _Scarborough_, who have
    voluntarily entered on a dangerous expedition, replete with
    numberless difficulties, which in the faithful discharge of our
    duty we must necessarily be exposed to, and supposing ourselves to
    be on the same footing as if embarked on any of His Maj's ships of
    war, or as the seamen and marines on the same expedition with
    us--we hope to receive the same indulgence, now conceive ourselves
    sorely aggrieved by finding the intentions of Government to make
    no allowance of spirituous liquor or wine after our arrival at the
    intended colony in New South Wales. A moderate distribution of the
    above-mentioned article being indispensibly requisite for the
    preservation of our lives, which change of climate and the extreme
    fatigue we shall be necessarily exposed to may probably endanger,
    we therefore humbly entreat you will be pleased to convey these
    our sentiments to Major Ross. Presuming, sir, that you will not
    only be satisfied that our demand is reasonable, but will also
    perceive the urgent necessity there is for a compliance with our
    request, we flatter ourselves you will also use your influence to
    cause a removal of the uneasiness we experience under the idea of
    being restricted in the supply of one of the principal necessarys
    of life, without which, for the reasons above stated, we cannot
    expect to survive the hardships incident to our situation. You may
    depend on a chearful and ready discharge of the public duties that
    may be enjoyned on us. The design of Government is, we hope, to
    have a feeling for the calamities we must encounter. So, as to
    induce them to provide in a moderate and reasonable degree for our
    maintenance and preservation, we beg leave to tender our most
    dutiful assurances of executing to the utmost of our power our
    several abilities in the duty assign'd, so that we remain in every
    respect loyal subjects to our king and worthy members of society."

The request was granted, and a three years' supply of spirits was put on
board the transports.

Several officers of this force are entitled to be remembered in connection
with the founding of New South Wales. Major Ross, the commandant and
lieutenant-governor of the colony, was a captain in the Plymouth division
when appointed to New South Wales, and was then given the rank of
brevet-major. From the day of his arrival in the colony until his return
to England he was a constant thorn in the side of the governor. A man more
unsuitable for the particular service could not have been chosen. He was a
most excellent pipe-clay and stock type of soldier, and his men appear to
have been kept well in hand, in spite of              [Sidenote: 1788-1792]
a service peculiarly calculated to subvert discipline, but there his
qualifications ended.

He conceived that the sole duty of himself and his command was to defend
the settlement from foreign invasion and to mount guard over the
prisoners. The governor wanted to form a criminal court, as empowered by
his commission, and to do this it was necessary to call upon the marine
officers to sit upon it. Ross would have nothing to do with it until
Phillip, by superior diplomacy, conquered his objections. Ross, in fact,
would have it that no civilian duty should be expected of him; and when
Phillip forced him to admit that the British Government had sent him out
to do more than mount guard, he quoted regulations and many other red-tape
reasons why he should not be anything but a soldier. To crown this, he
quarrelled with all his subordinate officers in turn, and at one time had
them nearly all under arrest together. During his service in the colony he
wrote many letters to the home authorities urging the abandonment of the
settlement asserting that it was utterly impossible that it could be
colonized. He returned to England early in 1792, and the Government showed
its appreciation of his value by making a recruiting officer of him, and
he died in that service at Ipswich in June, 1794.

There are three other officers whose names are familiar to most
Australians: Tench, Collins, and Dawes. The last-named acted as artillery
and engineer officer to the colony, and did incalculable service in
surveying work. He built an observatory and a battery at the head of
Sydney Cove, which, though altered out of recognition, still bears the
name of Dawes' Battery. Captain Tench wrote the most readable book giving
an account of the settlement, and as about half a dozen books were written
by different officers of the first fleet, this, if it is all, is something
to be said about him.

Lieutenant Collins is the best-known officer. He wrote an official
history, and was associated with the colony's progress for many years
after the marines went home. His book is drier reading than that of Tench,
but it is the standard authority; and all the history-makers, good and
bad, have largely drawn upon him for their materials.

In the memoirs of Holt, the "Irish rebel general," who was transported to
Australia, and knew Collins well, appears the following truthful account
of him:--

    "Colonel David Collins was the eldest son of General Arthur
    Tooker Collins and Harriet Frazer, of Pack, in the King's County,
    Ireland, and grandson of Arthur Collins, author of _The Peerage of
    England_, etc. He was born on the 3rd of March, 1756, and received
    a liberal education under the Rev. Mr. Marshall, master of the
    Grammar School at Exeter, where his father resided. In 1770 he was
    appointed lieutenant of marines, and in 1772 was with the late
    Admiral McBride when the unfortunate Matilda, Queen of Denmark,
    was rescued by the energy of the British Government, and conveyed
    to a place of safety in the King's (her brother's) Hanoverian
    dominions. On that occasion he commanded the guard that received
    Her Majesty, and had the honour of kissing her hand. In 1775 he
    was at the battle of Bunker's Hill, in which the first battalion
    of marines, to which he belonged, so signally distinguished
    itself, having its commanding officer, the gallant Major
    Pitcairne, and a great many officers and men, killed in storming
    the redoubt, besides a very large proportion wounded. In 1777 he
    was adjutant of the Chatham division, and in 1784 captain of
    marines on board the _Courageux_, of 74 guns, commanded by Lord
    Mulgrave, and participated in the partial action that took place
    with the enemy's fleet when Lord Howe relieved Gibraltar. Reduced
    to half-pay at the peace of 1782, he settled at Rochester, in
    Kent, and was finally appointed Judge-Advocate to the intended
    settlement at Botany Bay, and in May, 1787, sailed with Governor
    Phillip, who, moreover, appointed him his secretary, which
    situation he filled until his return to England in 1797.

    "The history of the settlement, which he soon after published,
    will be read and referred to as a book of authority as long as the
    colony exists whose name it bears. The appointment of
    Judge-Advocate, however, eventually proved injurious to his own
    interests. While absent he had been passed over when it came to
    his turn to be put on full pay; nor was he permitted to return to
    England to reclaim his rank in the corps, nor could he ever obtain
    any effectual redress, but was afterwards compelled to come in as
    a junior captain of the corps, though with his proper rank in the
    army. The difference this made in regard to his promotion was that
    he died a captain instead of a colonel-commandant, his rank in the
    army being merely brevet. He had the mortification of finding
    that, after ten years' distinguished service in the infancy of a
    colony, and to the sacrifice of every real comfort, his only
    reward had been the loss of many years' rank--a vital injury to an
    officer: a remark which his wounded feelings wrung from him at the
    close of the second volume of his history of the settlement, and
    which appears to have awakened the sympathy of those in power, as
    he was, almost immediately after its publication, offered the
    government of the projected settlement in Van Dieman's Land, which
    he accepted, and sailed once more for that quarter of the globe
    where he founded his new colony, struggled with great
    difficulties, which he overcame, and after remaining there eight
    years, was enjoying the flourishing state his exertions had
    produced, when he died suddenly, after a few days' confinement
    from a slight cold, on the 24th March, 1810.

    "His person was remarkably handsome, and his manners extremely
    prepossessing, while to a cultivated understanding and an early
    fondness for the _belles lettres_ he joined the most social

    "He had the goodwill, the good wishes, and the good word of
    everyone in the settlement. His conduct was exemplary, and his
    disposition most humane; his treatment of runaway convicts was
    conciliatory, and even kind. He would go into the forests, among
    the natives, to allow these poor creatures, the runaways, an
    opportunity of returning to their former condition; and, half dead
    with cold and hunger, they would come and drop on their knees
    before him, imploring pardon for their behaviour.

    "'Well,' he would say to them, 'now that you have lived in the
    bush, do you think the change you made was for the better? Are you
    sorry for what you have done?'

    "'Yes, sir.'

    "'And will you promise me never to go away again?'

    "'Never, sir.'

    "'Go to the storekeeper, then,' the benevolent Collins would say,
    'and get a suit of slops and your week's rations, and then go to
    the overseer and attend to your work. I give you my pardon, but
    remember that I expect you will keep your promise to me.'

    "I never heard of any governor or commandant acting in this
    manner, nor did I ever witness such leniency from any governor."

Of the marines it has already been said they behaved fairly well. Some of
them were punished--six, as a matter of fact, were hanged for thieving
from the public stores, a crime then of the greatest magnitude--but the
crimes committed were by individuals, and offences were very severely
punished in those days, even in England. Read what Colonel Cooper King
says as to the life of a marine:--

    "Some of the marine regimental records are interesting as showing
    the inner life of the sea, or even land, soldier a hundred years
    ago. In the tailor's shop in 1755, for example, the idea of an
    eight hours' working day was not evidently a burning question, for
    the men worked from 4 a.m. to 8 p.m., with one hour for meals.
    Again, punishments were severe, as the sentences passed on three
    deserters in 1766 show; for, while one was shot, the other two
    were to receive 1000 and 500 lashes respectively. In 1755 two
    'private men absent from exercise' were 'to be tyed neck and heels
    on the Hoe half an hour'; while thirteen years later a sergeant,
    for taking 'coals and two poles' from the dockyard, was sentenced
    to 500 lashes, and to be 'drummed out with a halter round his
    neck,' after, of course, being reduced to the ranks."[E]

[Footnote E: _The Story of the British Army_, by Lieutenant-Colonel C.
Cooper-King, F.G.S. (Methuen & Co., 1897.)]

Before taking leave of the marines the story of what happened when the
_Sirius_ was lost at Norfolk Island should be told. Lieutenant King, of
the _Sirius_, had been sent to colonize the island by Governor Phillip,
and was acting as governor of it, but when the _Sirius_ went ashore Major
Ross thought proper to establish martial law,         [Sidenote: 1789-1790]
and so (the quotation is from King's journal)--

    "at 8 a.m. on March 22nd, 1790, every person in the settlement was
    assembled under the lower flagstaff, where the Union flag was
    hoisted. The troops were drawn up in two lines, having the Union
    at their head in the centre, with the colours of the detachment
    displayed, the _Sirius's_ ship's company on the right and the
    convicts on the left, the officers in the centre, when the
    proclamation was read declaring the law-martial to be that by
    which the island was in future to be governed until further
    orders. The lieutenant-governor addressed the convicts, after
    which the whole gave three cheers, and then every person,
    beginning with the lieutenant-governor and Captain Hunter, passed
    under the Union in token of a promise or oath to submit and be
    amenable to the law-martial then declared. The convicts and the
    _Sirius's_ ship's company were then sent round to Cascade Bay,
    where proportions of flour and pork were received from the
    _Supply_ and brought round to the settlement."

In June, 1789, the Home Government determined to form a corps for special
service in New South Wales and bring the marines home. Several suggestions
had been made to this effect, and offers from more than one officer had
been received to raise a regiment. Ultimately an offer by Major Grose was
accepted to raise 300 rank and file. The short and ignoble story of this
corps can be traced in the records of New South Wales, and Mr. Britton,
in his volume of official history, devotes a chapter to an admirable
summary of the annals of the regiment.

Grose was the son of Francis Grose, the antiquarian, who died in 1791.
Francis the younger entered the army as ensign in the 52nd Regiment in
1775; served in the American War of Independence; fought at Bunker's Hill;
was twice wounded; went home on account of his wounds; was promoted to
captain; did two years' recruiting; was then promoted a major in the 96th;
then raised the New South Wales Regiment; was promoted lieutenant-colonel
while serving in the colony where he, as already has been said, acted as
governor for two years between the time of Phillip's departure and
Hunter's arrival. In 1795, owing to his wounds troubling him, he was
compelled to return to England, where he was given a staff appointment,
and in 1805 was promoted major-general.

Nicholas Nepean, the senior captain, entered the service in the Plymouth
division of the marines, and had served under Admiral Keppel. He left New
South Wales after a couple of years' service, and joined the 91st, and was
rapidly promoted, until in 1807 he was made brigadier-general and given a
command at Cape Breton. He was a brother of Evan Nepean, Under-Secretary
at the Home Office at the time of the foundation of the colony; and the
Nepean river, the source of Sydney's water supply, to this day reminds
Australians of the family connection.

The only other officers worth noting are Captain Paterson, who had been an
African traveller, and had written a book on his travels, and Lieutenant
MacArthur, whose name has already been mentioned in the chapter on Hunter,
and will reappear to some purpose later on. The last thing MacArthur did
before leaving England for New South Wales was to fight a duel. The
_Morning Post_ of December 2nd, 1789, tells how in consequence of a
dispute between Mr. Gilbert, the master of the transport _Neptune_, and
Lieutenant MacArthur, of the Botany Bay Rangers, the two landed at the old
gun wharf near the lines, Plymouth, and, attended by seconds, exchanged
shots twice. The seconds then interposed, and the business was settled by
MacArthur declaring that Captain Gilbert's conduct was in every respect
that of a gentleman and a man of honour, and in the evening he repeated
the same expressions on the quarterdeck of the _Neptune_ to the
satisfaction of all parties. The quarrel originated in the refusal of
Gilbert to admit MacArthur to his private mess-table, although he offered
the soldier every other accommodation for himself and wife and family. The
Government settled the affair by appointing a new master to the _Neptune_
and allowing MacArthur to exchange to another transport.

The corps was raised in the fashion of the time. Grose received a letter
of service:--

    "Yourself and the three captains now to be appointed by His
    Majesty will each be required to raise a complete company (viz.,
    three sergeants, three corporals, two drummers, and sixty-seven
    private men), in aid of the expenses of which you will be allowed
    to name the lieutenant and ensign of your respective companies,
    and to receive from the public three guineas for every recruit
    approved at the headquarters of the corps by a general or field
    officer appointed for the purpose."

Grose made what he could by the privilege of nominating and by any
difference there was between the price he paid for recruits and the public
money he was paid for them; this sort of business was common enough in
those days. Later on he received permission to raise two hundred more men,
and a second major, who paid £200 for his commission, was appointed. Such
men of the old marine force as chose to accept their discharge in New
South Wales were allowed that privilege, and were given a land grant to
induce them to become settlers, and these men were, on the arrival of the
New South Wales Corps, formed into an auxiliary company under the command
of Captain-Lieutenant George Johnson, who had been a marine officer in the
first fleet, and who, like MacArthur, was later on to make a chapter of
history. The regiment at its maximum strength formed ten companies,
numbering 886 non-coms, and privates.

It may be interesting to record on what conditions the marines were
granted discharges. First they must have served three years (a superfluous
condition, seeing that the corps was not relieved until long after three
years' service had expired); there was then granted to every non-com. 100
acres and every private 50 acres for ten years, after which they were to
pay an annual quit rent of a shilling for every ten acres. A bounty of £3
and a double grant of land was allowed to all men who re-enlisted in the
New South Wales Corps, and they were also given the further privilege of a
year's clothes, provisions, and seed grain, and one or more assigned
convict servants, at the discretion of the governor. The only available
return shows that about 50 of the men, a year before the force left the
colony, had accepted the offer of discharge and settled at Parramatta and
Norfolk Island, then the two principal farming settlements.

The Home Government made no provisions for grants to officers, and as to
free emigrants, they were a class in those days so little contemplated
that the early governors' instructions merely provided that they were to
be given every encouragement short of "subjecting the public to expense."
Grants of land equal to that given to non-commissioned officers could be
made, and assigned servants allowed, but nothing else.

Any modern emigrant who has seen what a grant of uncleared land in
Australia means knows what a poor chance of success the most industrious
settler could have on these terms, and the early governors were in despair
of getting people settled, since they could not provide settlers with
seeds, tools, clothing, or anything else without disobeying the order not
to subject the public to expense.

Emancipated convicts, on the other hand, were allowed much the same
privileges as discharged marines. Phillip repeatedly wrote to England on
this subject, and he, on his own responsibility, on more than one
occasion, departed from his instructions, and gave privileges to _bonâ
fide_ selectors of all classes.

The English Government was perfectly right in the plan laid down. Its
object was to encourage those people to go upon the land who were prepared
to remain there, and military and civil officials were not likely to
become permanent occupants of their land grants. An opportunity, as a
matter of fact, was given to them to supply information as to whether or
not they wanted to settle. At that time things looked unpromising, and
most of them answered, "No." When it became apparent to the Government
that there was a desire to settle, further instructions were issued by
which officers were allowed to take up land, but the permission was given
without providing proper security for permanent occupation or without
limiting the area of land grants. From the omission of these provisions
many abuses grew up. A scale of fees absurdly small, seeing that fees were
not chargeable to military and convict settlers, but only to people who,
it might well be supposed, could afford to pay, was also provided by the
Government, and regulations for the employment of assigned convicts were
drawn up.

In Governor Phillip's time there was no authority to grant officers any
land; in Lieutenant-Governor Grose's time there was no limit to the land
they might be granted, and as little value was attached to the Crown lands
of the colony, lands probably of less value then than any other in the
possession of civilized people, Grose's officers, who had to do a great
deal of extra civil work, were given land in payment for that work. Much
abuse has been heaped upon Grose for his alleged favouring of officers by
giving them huge grants of land, but, as a matter of fact, Grose behaved
very honourably; and Mac Arthur, who owned more land than any other
officer in 1794, had only 250 acres in cultivation, and the grants to
other officers never exceeded in any one case 120 acres. If Grose's land
policy was bad, he was not to blame, but the trafficking which he
permitted to grow up and practically encouraged was a different matter

Phillip warned the home Government before he left the colony that rum
might be a necessity, but it would certainly turn out a great evil. Soon
after Grose took command of the colony there arrived an American ship with
a cargo of provisions and rum for sale. The American skipper would not
sell the provisions without the purchaser also bought the spirits. This
was the beginning of the rum traffic; and ships frequently arrived
afterwards with stores, and always with quantities of spirits--rum from
America and brandy from the Cape. The officers purchased all the spirits,
and paid the wages of the convicts who were assigned to them with the
liquor; not only this, but they hired extra convict labour, paying for it
the same way, and strong drink became the medium of exchange.

All this has been an apparent digression from the history of the New South
Wales Corps, but, as will be seen, the subjects are intimately connected.
A later governor, who found the colony not so bad as it was at this time,
said its population consisted of people who had been, and people who ought
to have been, transported. Little wonder then that the New South Wales
Corps, enlisted from the lowest classes of the English population, became
demoralized. Most of the recruits came from that famous "clink" the Savoy
Military Prison. They had little drill or discipline when they were
embarked for the colony, and the character of the service they were
employed in was the very worst to make good soldiers of them.

In consequence they became a dangerous element in the early life of the
colony; there were frequently breaches of discipline, there were cases of
downright mutiny, and their career in New South Wales ended in a
rebellion. The responsibility for the last crime, however, is with the
officers, and not the men. One mutiny was that of the detachment on the
_Lady Shore_ in 1798.

This ship was on her way out with female prisoners and a few of the better
sort of male convicts. The soldiers joined with the seamen and seized the
ship, turning those who would not take side with them adrift in the boats.
Among these loyal people were some of the male convicts. The boats made
their way to Rio Janeiro, whence the people ultimately reached England.
Among the "respectable" convicts was one Major Semple, a notorious
swindler of the time, who on this occasion behaved well, risking his life
for the protection of the ship's officers--from the soldiers who had been
put on board to support law and order! (He afterwards settled in the
Brazils, and received his pardon from England.) The ship was carried by
the mutineers into Monte Video and there given up to the Spaniards, who
later, finding the true character of the people on board of her, hanged
the ringleader and delivered up others of her crew to the English naval
authorities. The female convicts had been carried off by the soldiers, and
when the Rev. William Gregory arrived at Monte        [Sidenote: 1798-1807]
Video (a prisoner of war taken in the missionary ship _Duff_ on her second
voyage), he found these women there. They had by their conduct given the
Spaniards a curious idea of the morality of Englishwomen.[F] Among the
rebellious soldiers were many foreigners, and when the mutineers seized
the vessel they announced that they had taken her in the name of the
French Republic. They addressed one another as "Citizen" this and
"Citizen" that, and behaved generally in the approved manner of those
"reformers" of the period who had been inspired by the French

[Footnote F: The _Duff was_ captured by the _Bonaparte_, privateer. Among
her passengers were several ladies--wives of the missionaries--and at
first the citizens of Monte Video classed them with the _Lady Shore's_
female passengers.]

In the chapters on King and Bligh the mutinies of this remarkable regiment
form almost the principal episodes, so we may conclude this chapter with
what short regimental history the corps possessed.

As the colony grew in population the corps was increased in strength,
until, in 1807, it reached a total of 11 companies, numbering 886
non-commissioned officers and men. In 1808 came the Bligh episode, yet to
be described. The home Government recalled the corps, and a battalion of
the 73rd, 700 strong, was sent out to relieve it. Authority was, however,
given to make up the 73rd to the strength of 1000 by taking volunteers
from the corps. This was done, and a veteran company was also formed, and
the strength of the 73rd then reached a total of 1234 soldiers, of whom
something like 500 men originally belonged to the New South Wales Corps.
The remainder of the old corps went home, and was placed on the army list
as the 102nd Regiment. Before this its official title was the New South
Wales Corps, but the newspapers of the day often varied this by calling it
the Botany Bay Rangers and similar appropriate names.

The 102nd served at various home stations until 1812, when it was sent to
the Bermudas, and in 1814 took part in an expedition against Mosse Island,
in America. In 1816 the 102nd became the 100th        [Sidenote: 1823-1870]
Regiment; and on the 24th of March, 1818, the regiment was disbanded, and
the regiments which were afterwards thus numbered have no connection with

The veteran company lasted until 1823, being linked to each regiment of
foot that came out to the Australian station. The 73rd was followed by the
46th; then came the 48th, and soon afterwards the New South Wales Veteran
Company, as it was called, was abolished. Imperial troops from that time
onward garrisoned the Australian colonies until 1870, when they were
withdrawn, and their places taken by the permanent artillery regiment, the
militia, and the volunteer forces, raised under constitutional government.



For the reason that all the contemporary historians were officers, and
their writings little more than official accounts of the colonization of
Australia, the personality of the naval governors never stands out from
their pages. The German blood in Phillip seems to have made him a
peculiarly self-contained man; the respect due to Hunter, as a fine type
of the old sea-dog, just saves him from being laughed at in his
gubernatorial capacity; King, however, by pure force of character, is more
sharply defined. In reading of his work we learn something of the man
himself; and of all Phillip's subordinates in the beginning of things
Australian, he, and he alone, was the friend of his cold, reserved chief.

Philip Gidley King was twenty years younger than Phillip, and was thirty
years of age when he, in 1786, joined the _Sirius_ as second lieutenant.
In a statement of his services sent by himself to the Admiralty in 1790,
he supplied the following particulars:--

    "Served in the East Indies from the year 1770 to 1774 on board His
    Majesty's sloop and ships _Swallow, Dolphin_, and _Prudent_; in
    North America in His Majesty's ships _Liverpool, Virginia,
    Princess_, and _Renown_ from the year 1775 to 1779. I was made a
    lieutenant into the last ship by Mr. Byron November 26th, 1778. On
    Channel service, Gibraltar, and Lisbon, in His Majesty's sloop and
    ship _Kite_ and _Ariadne_ from 1780 to 1783; in the East Indies in
    His Majesty's ship _Europe_ from 1783 to 1785; in New South Wales
    in His Majesty's ship the _Sirius_ from 1786 to 1790. This time
    includes the ship being put in commission, and my stay at Norfolk
    Island to this date. In His Majesty's service twenty years; twelve
    years a lieutenant."

    King had entered the service when he was twelve years of age, and
    was previously under Phillip in the _Europe_. He was probably the
    best educated of the officers in the first fleet, and from his
    knowledge of French there happened an episode which is a matter
    not only of Australian, but of European, interest.

    While the first fleet were lying at anchor in Botany Bay, two
    strange sail were seen in the offing. That official historian,
    Tench, of the marines, in a little touch of descriptive ability,
    which he sometimes displayed, described the incident:--

    "The thoughts of removal" (in search of a better site for a
    settlement) "banished sleep, so that I rose at the first dawn of
    the morning. But judge of my surprise on hearing from a sergeant,
    who ran down almost breathlessly to the cabin where I was
    dressing, that a ship was seen off the harbour's mouth. At first I
    only laughed, but knowing the man who spoke to me to be of great
    veracity, and hearing him repeat his information, I flew upon
    deck; and I had barely set my foot, when the cry of 'Another
    sail!' struck on my astonished ear. Confounded by a thousand ideas
    which arose in my mind in an instant, I sprang upon the baracado,
    and plainly descried two ships of considerable size standing in
    for the mouth of the bay. By this time the alarm had become
    general, and everyone appeared in conjecture. Now they were
    Dutchmen sent to dispossess us, and the moment after storeships
    from England with supplies for the settlement. The improbabilities
    which attended both these conclusions were sunk in the agitation
    of the moment. It was by Governor Phillip that this mystery was at
    length unravelled, and the cause of the alarm pronounced to be two
    French ships, which, it was recollected, were on a voyage of
    discovery in the Southern Hemisphere. Thus were our doubts cleared
    up, and our apprehensions banished."

[Illustration: GOVERNOR KING. From a heliotype published in "The
Historical Records of New South Wales" [Sydney, 1889, etc.], after a
portrait in the possession of the Hon. P.G. King. _To face p_. 138.]

The two ships were the _Boussole_ and the _Astrolabe_, the French
expedition under the illstarred La Pérouse. Phillip was at Port Jackson
selecting a site for the settlement, and the English ships, before the
Frenchmen had swung to their anchors, were on their way round to the new
harbour. But certain courtesies were exchanged between the representatives
of the two nations, and King was the officer employed to transact business
with them. La Pérouse gave him despatches to send home by the returning
transports. These letters and the words spoken to and recorded by King
("In short, Mr. Cook has done so much that he has left me nothing to do
but admire his work") were the last the world heard from the unfortunate
officer, whose fate from that hour till forty years later remained a
mystery of the sea.

Norfolk Island was discovered by Cook in October, 1774, and in his one
day's stay there he noted its pine-trees and its flax plant. The people at
home thought that the flax and the timber of New Zealand might be used for
naval purposes, and as Cook's report said that Norfolk Island contained
similar products, the colonization of the island as an adjunct to the New
South Wales settlements no doubt suggested itself. Phillip was therefore
ordered to "send a small establishment thither to secure the same to us
and prevent its occupation by any other European power."

A separate command like this had to be entrusted to a reliable man, and
Phillip, though no doubt loth to lose the close-at-hand service of King,
yet felt the importance of the work, and so chose him for it. King left
for the island on February 15th, 1788, in the _Supply_, taking with him
James Cunningham, master's mate; Thomas Jamison, surgeon's mate; Roger
Morley, a volunteer adventurer, who had been a master weaver; 2 marines
and a seaman from the _Sirius_; and 9 male and 6 female convicts. This
complement was to form the little colony. The _Supply_, under Lieutenant
Ball, was ordered to return as soon as she had landed the colonists. On
the way down, Ball discovered and named Lord Howe Island, and on March 8th
the people were landed at their solitary home.

King remained on the island until March, 1790, doing such good work there
that not only were the people keeping themselves, but, as we have seen,
Phillip sent to him a large proportion of his half-famished settlers from
New South Wales, and when King left the population numbered 418, excluding
80 shipwrecked people of the _Sirius_.


As governor of the island, King combined in himself        [Sidenote: 1788]
the functions of the criminal and civil courts, and the duties of
chaplain. Every Sunday morning, we are told, he caused the people to be
assembled for religious service. A man beat the head of an empty cask for
a church bell. His punishments for offences then punishable by death were
always remarkable for their mildness, as leniency was measured in those
days when floggings were reckoned by the hundred lashes.

King left Norfolk Island to go to England with despatches from Phillip. He
sailed from Port Jackson in April, 1790, in the _Supply_ for Batavia. The
brig returned to the colony with such food as she could obtain, and King
chartered a small Dutch vessel to convey him to the Cape of Good Hope.

The voyage home was one of the most remarkable ever made. Five days after
leaving Batavia the crew, including the master of the vessel and the
surgeon, fell ill from the usual cause: "the putrid fever of Batavia."
Only four well men were left. King took command of them, put up a tent on
deck to escape the contagion, ministered to the sick, buried the seventeen
who died, was compelled to go below with his respiratory organs masked by
a sponge soaked in vinegar, and through all this navigated the vessel to
the Mauritius in a fortnight.

At Port Louis he was offered a passage to France in a French warship, but,
fearful that war might have broken out by the time he reached the Channel,
and he might thus be delayed in his mission, he refused the offer, and
having cleaned and fumigated his ship, he shipped a new crew and sailed
for the Cape, which he reached eighteen days later.

At the Cape he found Riou with the wreck of the _Guardian_, he who fell at
Copenhagen, and whose epitaph is written in Nelson's despatch, telling how
"the good and gallant Captain Riou" fought the _Amazon_. The _Guardian_,
loaded with stores for Port Jackson, had struck an iceberg, and her wreck
had been navigated in heroic fashion by Riou to the Cape. To the colony
her loss was a great misfortune, and King realized that there was so much
the greater need for hurry, and two months later he reached England. This
was on the 20th of December, eight months from Port Jackson!

At home his superiors quickly recognized that King was a good officer, and
Phillip's warm recommendations were acted upon.            [Sidenote: 1792]
He was given a commission as lieutenant-governor of Norfolk Island, £250 a
year, and the rank of commander. He spent three months in England,
married, and sailed again in the _Gorgon_, which was the first warship,
unless the _Sirius_ and _Supply_ and the Frenchmen are counted as such, to
visit Sydney.

Phillip went home, Grose took charge at Sydney, and King returned to his
island command, which during his absence had been under Major Ross, of the
Marines, and martial law. Then began serious trouble. In England,
curiously enough, no thought of New Zealand had been taken yet. Some of
the masters of transports to New South Wales, who were already beginning
to experiment in whaling (whales in plenty had been seen from Dampier's
time), had visited the coasts of New Zealand, and King himself was
strongly of opinion that a settlement should be attempted there.

The expedition under Vancouver was, in 1792, in New Zealand and Australian
waters. Vancouver induced a couple of Maoris to leave their home for the
purpose of teaching the colonists how to use the flax plant, promising the
natives that they should be returned to New Zealand. The Maoris were
despatched by Vancouver in the _Daedalus_ to Port Jackson, and Grose sent
them on to Norfolk Island. Little was to be learnt from them, and, as a
matter of fact, the attempt to grow and use flax never came to anything.

King was very kind to the two natives, who became much attached to him,
and he, anxious to carry out the promise of the white man to return them
to their homes, did a very imprudent thing. The _Britannia_, a returning
storeship, was detained by contrary winds at the island on her way to the
East Indies. The wind served for New Zealand. King chartered her to take
the two natives home, and himself accompanied them on the passage to the
Bay of Islands. King's reasons for the step were--

    "the sacred duty that devolves upon Englishmen of keeping faith
    with native races, and the desire to see for himself what could be
    done towards colonizing New Zealand."

These reasons would justify British officers in many circumstances, but
they scarcely warranted King in leaving even for the short period of ten
days, the time occupied over the transaction, such an awkward command as
the government of a penal settlement. The senior officer under King was
Lieutenant Abbott, of the New South Wales Corps; and, instead of
appointing him to the command of the island in his absence, King left
Captain Nepean, of the same regiment, in charge. This officer was at the
time about to go to England on sick leave, and King's reason for his
selection was that he had no confidence in either Abbott or the subaltern
under him. There is plenty of evidence that King was right in his want of
confidence in these officers, but the action gave mortal offence to Grose,
and King's absence from the command gave Grose his opportunity. But King
did worse: Grose was his superior officer, and until Abbott had "got in
first" with his grievances King never offered any explanation of his acts
to the senior officer, but sent his account of the trip, his reasons for
undertaking it and for giving the command to Nepean, directly to the Home

Grose was unjustly severe, was downright offensive over the business; but,
to do him justice, he afterwards realized this, and ultimately
considerably moderated his behaviour. But there was another and a greater
cause of irritation to the lieutenant-governor at Port Jackson, who, be it
remembered, was also the officer commanding the New South Wales Regiment:
This was the way in which King suppressed a serious military mutiny at
Norfolk Island.

Naturally enough, the men of the New South Wales Corps stationed on the
little island fraternized with the convicts. The two classes of the
population drank and gambled together, and of course quarrelled; then the
soldiers and the prisoners' wives became too intimate, and the quarrels
between parties grew serious. A time-expired prisoner caught his wife and
a soldier together; the aggrieved husband struck the soldier, and the
latter complained. The man was fined _20s_., bound over to keep the peace
for twelve months, and allowed by King time to pay the fine. This
exasperated the whole military detachment. The idea of an ex-convict
striking a soldier who had done him the honour to seduce his wife, and
being fined a paltry sovereign, with time to pay!

Then, in January, 1794, a number of freed men and convicts were, by
permission of the governor, performing a play; this had been a regular
Saturday evening's amusement for some weeks. Just before the performance
began a sergeant of the corps entered the theatre and forcibly tried to
take a seat that had been allotted to one of the lieutenant-governor's
servants. A discharged convict, who was one of the         [Sidenote: 1794]
managers of the theatre, remonstrated with the soldier, who replied with a
blow. The ex-convict then turned the man out of the building, and the
performance began, King entering the theatre when all was quiet, but
having his suspicions aroused by the threatening aspect of the soldiers.

At the conclusion of the performance the disturbance was renewed outside,
and a number of the soldiers went to the barracks, got their side-arms,
and returned to the scene, threatening what they would do. King heard the
noise, and rushing out from his house, seized a man who was flourishing
his bayonet, and handing him over to the guard, ordered that they should
take him to the guard-room.

This was the critical moment. After a second's hesitation King was obeyed,
and the soldiers, at the order of Lieutenant Abbott, their officer,
retired to the barracks, where they held a meeting, and resolved to free
their comrade by force, if he was not released in the morning. King, who
had kept his ears open, took counsel with the military and civil officers,
and a unanimous decision was arrived at to disarm the detachment.

This could only be effected by stratagem, although it was believed that
but a portion of the men were disaffected. All those suspected of
complicity were in the morning marched, under one of their officers, to a
distant part of the island on the pretence of collecting wild fowl
feathers. While they were away, King, with the remainder of the military
and civil officers, went to the guard-room and took possession of all the
arms. The lieutenant-governor then swore in as a militia 44 marines and
seamen settlers, armed them, and all danger was over.

Just as this was completed, the Government schooner arrived from Port
Jackson, and King sent ten ringleaders of the mutiny to Sydney for trial,
pardoning ten others. The vessel was despatched in a hurry, and King sent
a very meagre letter to Grose, leaving a lieutenant of the corps in charge
of the guard sent with the mutineers to explain matters.

Grose assembled a court of inquiry, and its finding severely censured King
for daring so to disgrace the soldiers as to disarm them. Grose sent an
offensive letter with this finding, in which King was ordered to disband
his militia, and generally to reverse everything that had been done; and
King did exactly as he was ordered to do. At home the Duke of Portland
approved of all King's acts, objecting only           [Sidenote: 1797-1800]
to his leaving his command to take home the New Zealanders without first
getting permission from Grose.

King left Norfolk Island in 1797, and on his arrival in England, tired of
civil appointment, set about looking for a ship. But Sir Joseph Banks,
whose disinterested regard for the colony and its affairs had given him
considerable influence with the Home Office, procured him a dormant
commission as governor of New South Wales, under which he was to act in
the event of the death or absence of Hunter. He arrived in the colony
early in 1800, bringing with him a despatch recalling Hunter, and it can
easily be understood that the ex-governor did not display very good
feeling towards his successor, who was sent to replace him in this rough
and ready fashion.

The state of the colony at this time has already been described, and
although during King's administration many events of colonial importance
happened, we have only space for those of more general interest. King
displayed great firmness and ability in dealing with the abuses which had
grown up owing to the liquor traffic; but the condition of affairs
required stronger remedies than it was in his power to apply, so things
went on much the same as before, and the details of life then in New South
Wales are of little interest to general readers.

King's determination and honesty of purpose earned for him the hatred of
the rum traders, and the New South Wales Corps was in such a state that in
a despatch, after praising the behaviour of the convicts, he wrote that he
wished he could write in the same way of the military, "who," says King,
"after just attempting to set their commanding officer and myself at
variance and failing, they have ever since been causing nothing but the
most vexacious trouble both with their own commandant and myself."

Captain MacArthur had by this time imported his Spanish sheep, and had
become the greatest landowner and pastoralist in the colony. MacArthur
wanted to go to England, and offered the lot to the Government for £4000.
King had the good sense to see the value of the offer, and in a letter to
the Home Office advised its acceptance. To this came replies from both the
Duke of Portland and the War Office, expressing the strongest disapproval
of the idea and stating that it was highly improper that an officer in the
service should have become such a big trader. In 1801 MacArthur
quarrelled with one of his brother officers, and this led to almost all
the officials in the colony quarrelling with one another and to a duel
between MacArthur and his commanding officer, Lieutenant-Colonel Paterson,
the latter being wounded. King put MacArthur under arrest, and sent him to
England for trial with the remark that if he was sent to the colony again
it had better be as governor, as he already owned half of it, and it would
not be long before he owned the other half.

The Advocate-General of the army, however, sent him back to the colony
with a recommendation that the squabble should be dropped.

During King's administration several political prisoners who had been
concerned in the 1798 rebellion were sent out; and, by the governor's good
offices, these men were given certain indulgences, and generally placed
upon a different footing to felons, a distinction that had not been
provided for by the Imperial Government. King has had very little credit
for this, and because he _did_ deal severely with Irish rebels has been
put down by many as a cruel man, but the home Government at first sent out
prisoners without any history of their crimes, and King was unable to
tell the dangerous from the comparatively inoffensive until he had seen
how the exiles behaved in the colony. During King's administration there
was an open revolt of the convicts. They assembled at a place called
Castle Hill, about 20 miles from Sydney, to fight a "battle for liberty."
Here is the report of the officer who suppressed the rebellion:--

  "_Major Johnston to Lieutenant-Colonel Paterson_.
  "_9th March, 1804_.

    "Sir,--I beg leave to acquaint you that about half-past 1 o'clock
    on Monday morning last I took the command of the detachment
    marched from headquarters accompanied by Lieutenant Davies,
    consisting of two officers, two sergeants, and 52 rank and file of
    the New South Wales Corps, and, by His Excellency Governor King's
    orders, I proceeded immediately to Parramatta, where we arrived at
    the dawn of day. I halted at the barracks about 20 minutes to
    refresh my party, and then marched to Government House, and,
    agreeable to His Excellency's orders, divided my detachment,
    giving Lieutenant Davies the command of half and taking
    Quartermaster Laycock and the other half, with one trooper,
    myself, having the Governor's instructions to march in pursuit of
    the rebels, who, in number about 400, were on the summit of the
    hill. I immediately detached a corporal,               [Sidenote: 1804]
    with four privates and about six inhabitants, armed with musquets,
    to take them in flank whilst I proceeded with the rest up the
    hill, when I found the rebels had marched on for the Hawkesbury,
    and after a pursuit of about ten miles I got sight of them. I
    immediately rode forward, attended by the trooper and Mr. Dixon,
    the Roman Catholic priest, calling to them to halt, that I wished
    to speak to them. They desired I would come into the middle of
    them, as their captains were there, which I refused, observing to
    them that I was within pistol-shot, and it was in their power to
    kill me, and that their captains must have very little spirit if
    they would not come forward to speak to me, upon which two persons
    advanced towards me as their leaders, to whom I represented the
    impropriety of their conduct, and advised them to surrender, and I
    would mention them in as favourable terms as possible to the
    Governor. C. replied they would have death or liberty.
    Quartermaster Laycock with the detachment just then appearing in
    sight, I clapped my pistol to J.'s head, whilst the trooper did
    the same to C.'s and drove them with their swords in their hands
    to the Quartermaster and the detachment, whom I ordered to advance
    and charge the main body of the rebels then formed in line. The
    detachment immediately commenced a well-directed fire, which was
    but weakly returned, for, the rebel line being soon broken, they
    ran in all directions. We pursued them a considerable way, and
    have no doubt but that many of them fell. We have found 12 killed,
    6 wounded, and have taken 26 prisoners.

    "Any encomiums I could pass on Quartermaster Laycock and the
    detachment I had the honour to command would fall far short of
    what their merit entitles them to, and I trust their steady
    perseverance, after a fatiguing march of upwards of 45 miles, to
    restore order and tranquillity will make their services
    acceptable. Return of arms taken from the rebels: 26 muskets, 4
    bayonets on poles, 8 reaping-hooks, 2 swords, a fowling-piece, and
    a pistol."

The revolt seems to have been the result more than anything else of the
number of political prisoners which at that time had been transported to
the colony and the quantity of liquor available. Certainly King's
government was not severe enough to provoke an outbreak. Sir Joseph Banks,
writing to him, said:--

    "There is only one part of your conduct as governor which I do not
    think right; that is your frequent reprieves. I would have justice
    in the case of those under your command who have already forfeited
    their lives, and been once admitted to a commutation of
    punishment, to be certain and inflexible, and no one case on
    record where mere mercy, which is a deceiving sentiment, should be
    permitted to move your mind from the inexorable decree of blind
    justice. Circumstances may often make pardon necessary--I mean
    those of suspected error in conviction; but mere whimpering
    soft-heartedness never should be heard."

Dr. Lang published his _History of New South Wales_ in 1834; Judge Therry
wrote a book of personal reminiscences dating from 1829. Both these
writers describe things they knew, and relate stories told to them by men
who had come out in the first fleet. Therry and Lang were as opposite as
the poles: the first was an Irish barrister and a Roman Catholic; the
second was a Scotchman and a Presbyterian minister. The two men are
substantially in agreement in the pictures they draw of the colony's early
governors and of life as it was in New South Wales down to the twenties.

Lang and Therry both relate anecdotes of King. The stories do not present
him in a light to command respect; the official records rather confirm
than contradict the stories. Governing a penal colony seems to have had an
unhealthy influence upon the sailor governors; Phillip only escaped it.

King, Phillip's right hand, when a lieutenant, makes a voyage to England
in fashion heroic; he commands Norfolk Island at a critical time, when no
one but a _man_ could have controlled its affairs; he is appointed to the
supreme command in New South Wales, and before he has been many months in
office becomes a laughing-stock.

It is due to the first governor's successors to remember that they had no
force behind them. Phillip's marines were soldiers; the New South Wales
Corps were dealers in rum, officers and men were duly licensed to sell it,
and every ship that came into the harbour brought it. "In 1802, when I
arrived, it was lamentable to behold the drunkenness. It was no uncommon
occurrence for men to sit round a bucket of spirits and drink it with
quart pots until they were unable to stir from the spot." Thus wrote a
surgeon. "It was very provoking to see officers draw goods from the public
store to traffic in them for their private gain, which goods were sent out
for settlers, who were compelled to deal with the huckster officers,
giving them from 50 to 500 per cent, profit and paying them in grain."
Thus wrote Holt, the Irish rebel general.

These men are true witnesses, and the extracts among the mildest
statements made by any contemporary writer. Yet, be it remembered, the
colony was a penal settlement. The prison chronicles of England at this
period are not a whit less disgraceful reading; the stone walls of
Newgate, in the heart of London, hid scenes no less disgraceful than the
stockades of Botany Bay.

But, though the naval governors controlled New South Wales before free
emigration had leavened its population, and in consequence are remembered
but as gaolers, they were something better than this: their pioneering
work should not be forgotten.

During King's administration sea exploration was carried on vigorously
(the work of Flinders and Bass will form the subject of the next chapter);
settlements were made at Van Diemen's Land in place of Port Phillip, where
an attempt to colonize was abandoned, to be successfully carried out later
on; the important town of Newcastle was founded; the whale fisheries made
a fair start; and several expeditions were conducted into the interior,
always to be stopped by the Blue Mountains barrier. Above all, MacArthur,
in spite of every discouragement, made a success of his wool-growing,
resigned his commission, and returned to the colony, the first of the
great pastoralists. King, to his credit, forgot his differences with
MacArthur, and lent a willing hand to the colonist. The first newspaper,
the _Sydney Gazette_, was published just before King left the colony, and
free settlers began to come out in numbers.

The French expedition under Baudin called at Port Jackson to refresh, and
certain matters in connection with their visit are worth telling. Two
unfortunate incidents occurred: one an accusation against the French
officers of selling on shore certain liquor King had given them permission
to purchase from a merchantman for the use of their ships' companies;
another incident was the manner of hoisting the English ensign on board
one of the French ships, which was "dressed" for a holiday. Baudin
explained these matters easily enough. The flag was wrongly hoisted by
accident, and the accusation for selling liquor was unfounded, and certain
officers of the New South Wales Corps who made the statements did not come
out of the affair very creditably.

[Illustration: SIR JOSEPH BANKS. From a picture by Thomas Phillips, R.A.,
in the National Portrait Gallery. _To face p._ 158.]

But the most noteworthy incident is explained in this extract from a
letter dated Sydney, May 9th, 1803, from King to Sir Joseph Banks:--

    "Whilst the French ships lay here I was on the most friendly
    footing with Mons'r Baudin and all his officers. _Entre nous_, he
    showed me and left with me his journals, in which were contained
    all his orders from the first idea of his voyage taking place, and
    also the whole of the drawings made on the voyage. His object was,
    by his orders, the collection of objects of natural history from
    this country at large and the geography of Van Diemen's Land. The
    south and south-west coast, as well as the north-west and north
    coast, were his particular objects. It does not appear by his
    orders that he was at all instructed to touch here, which I do not
    think he intended if not obliged by distress. With all this
    openness on his part, I could only have general ideas on the
    nature of their visit to Van Diemen's Land. I communicated it to
    Mons'r Baudin, who informed me that he knew of no idea that the
    French had of settling on any part or side of this continent. They
    had not been gone more than a few hours when a general report was
    circulated that it had been the conversation of the French
    officers that Mons'r Baudin had orders to fix on a place for a
    settlement at Van Diemen's Land, and that the French, on receiving
    his accounts, were to make an establishment at 'Baie du Nord,'
    which, you will observe, in D'Entrecasteaux's charts is what we
    call 'Storm Bay Passage,' and the French 'Canal D'Entrecasteaux.'
    It seemed one of the French officers had given Colonel Paterson a
    chart, and described the intended spot."

So King sent for the colonel, and then,

    "without losing an instant, a colonial vessel was immediately
    equipped and provided with as many scientific people as I could
    put into her, and despatched after Mons'r Baudin. The instruction
    I gave the midshipman who commanded her was to examine Storm Bay
    Passage and leave His Majesty's colours flying there with a guard,
    and that it was my intention to send an establishment there by the
    _Porpoise_. This order, you will observe, was a blind, and as such
    was to be communicated to Mons'r Baudin, as my only object was to
    make him acquainted with the reports I had heard, and to assure
    him and his masters that the King's claim would not be so easily
    given up. The midshipman in the _Cumberland_ had other private
    orders not to go to Storm Bay Passage, but to follow the French
    ships as far as King's Island, and that he was to make the
    pretext of an easterly wind forcing him into the straits, and as
    he was enjoined to survey King's Island and Port Phillip, that
    service he should perform before he went to Storm Bay Passage.

    "This had the desired effect. He overtook _Geographe_ and
    _Naturaliste_ at King's Island the day the _Naturaliste_ parted
    company with the _Geographe_ on the former returning to France,
    and as an officer of the colony was going passenger in her, the
    mid. was instructed to give him privately a packet for the
    Admiralty and Lord Hobart, in which, I believe, was one for you.
    These letters contained the particulars. The mid. was received by
    Mons'r Baudin with much kindness. In the latter's answer to me he
    felt himself rather hurt at the idea that 'had such an intention
    on his part existed, that he should conceal it.' However, he put
    it on the most amicable footing, altho' the mid. planted His
    Majesty's colours close to their tents, and kept them flying
    during the time the French ships stayed there."

Notwithstanding their first little differences, King and Baudin parted the
best of friends, and to an orphan asylum established by King in Sydney,
Baudin sent a donation of £50; but King's action in sending the
_Cumberland_ after him struck the Frenchman in a different light. He wrote
to King telling him that if he had wanted to annex Van Diemen's Land he
would have made no secret of it, that Tasman anyhow had not discovered it
for the benefit of Englishmen only, and that--

    "I was well convinced that the arrival of the _Cumberland_ had
    another motive than merely to bring your letter, but I did not
    think it was for the purpose of hoisting the British flag
    precisely on the spot where our tents had been pitched a long time
    previous to her arrival. I frankly confess that I am displeased
    that such has taken place. That childish ceremony was ridiculous,
    and has become more so from the manner in which the flag was
    placed, the head being downwards, and the attitude not very
    majestic. Having occasion to go on shore that day, I saw for
    myself what I am telling you. I thought at first it might have
    been a flag which had served to strain water and then hung out to
    dry; but seeing an armed man walking about, I was informed of the
    ceremony which had taken place that morning. I took great care in
    mentioning it to your captain, but your scientists, with whom he
    dined, joked about it, and Mr. Petit, of whose cleverness you are
    aware, made a complete caricature on the event. It is true that
    the flag sentry was sketched. I tore up the caricature as soon as
    I saw it, and gave instructions that such was not to be repeated
    in future."

Towards the latter end of 1803 King grew very tired of the petty
annoyances of the officers of the New South Wales Corps, and he wrote home
asking that either a commission should be appointed to inquire into the
government of the colony, or that he should be permitted to go to England
himself and report upon the state of affairs. With the letter he sent
home copies of lampoons which he alleged were anonymously written and
circulated by officers of the regiment. Here is a sample of one:--


  "My power to make great
  O'er the laws and the state
    Commander-in-Chief I'll assume;
  Local rank, I persist,
  Is in my own fist:
    To doubt it who dares to presume.

  "On Monday keep shop,
  In two hours' time stop
    To relax from such kingly fatigue,
  To pillage the store
  And rob Government more
    Than a host of good thieves--by intrigue.

  "For infamous acts from my birth I'd an itch,
    My fate I foretold but too sure;
    Tho' a rope I deserved, which is justly my due,
  I shall actually die in a ditch,
      And be damned."

By way of reply, Lord Hobart, then at the Home Office, informed King, that
although the Government had the fullest appreciation of the good service
he had done, yet the unfortunate differences between himself and the
officers would best be ended by relieving him of his       [Sidenote: 1805]
command as soon as a successor could be chosen. The successor, in the
person of Bligh, was chosen in July, 1805, and King a few months later
returned to England.

In Hobart's letter to King informing him of the decision to recall him,
the former refers not only to the unfortunate difference "between you and
the military officers," but to the fact that these disputes "have extended
to the commander of H.M.S. _Glatton_." Highly indignant, King replied to
this in the following paragraph of a despatch dated August 14th, 1804:--

    "In what relates to the commander of His Majesty's ship _Glatton_,
    had I, on his repeated demands, committed myself, by the most
    flagrant abuse of the authority delegated to me, by giving him a
    free pardon for a female convict for life, who had never landed
    from the _Glatton_, to enable her to cohabit with him on his
    passage home, I might, in that case, have avoided much of his
    insults here and his calumnious invective in England; but after
    refusing, as my bounden duty required, to comply to his
    unwarrantable demands, which, if granted, must have very justly
    drawn on me your lordship's censure and displeasure, with the
    merited reproach of those deserving objects to whom that last mark
    of His Majesty's mercy is so cautiously extended, from that
    period, my lord, the correspondence will evidently show no
    artifice or means on his part were unused to insult not only
    myself as governor of this colony, but the military and almost
    every other officer of the colony."

There is, of course, another side to this. Captain Colnett, of the
_Glatton_, asked for the woman's pardon on the ground that she had
supplied him with information which enabled him to anticipate a mutiny of
the convicts on the passage out. On the return of the _Glatton_ to
England, the _St. James Chronicle_ informs its readers that at a dinner at
Walmer Castle Colnett dined with William Pitt. Perhaps over their wine the
two discussed Governor King, and hence perhaps Hobart's letter of recall.

During King's period of office there were, besides the Irish rebels, many
prisoners whose names are famous, or infamous, in story. Pickpocket George
Barrington, who came out in Governor Phillip's time, once the Beau Brummel
of his branch of rascality, had settled down into a respectable settler,
and was in King's government, superintendent of convicts, at £50 a year
wages. Sir Henry Browne Hayes, at one time sheriff of Cork city, was sent
out for life in King's time for abducting a rich Quaker girl; he was
pardoned, and returned to England in 1812, leaving behind him a fine
residence which he had built for himself, and which        [Sidenote: 1808]
is still one of the beauty spots at the entrance of Sydney harbour.

Margarot, one of the "Scotch martyrs," also fell foul of King, who sent
him to Hobart for seditious practices. The governor seems to have punished
Scotch and Irish pretty impartially, for Hayes and Margarot were coupled
together as disturbing characters and both sent away.

The "martyrs," it will perhaps be remembered, were Muir, Palmer, Skirving,
Gerald, and Margarot, transported at Edinburgh for libelling the
Government in August, 1793, and most harshly dealt with, as everyone
nowadays admits.

King was a Cornishman, a native of Launceston. When he went home in 1790
he married a Miss Coombes, of Bedford. By this lady he had several
children. The eldest of them, born at Norfolk Island in 1791, he named
Phillip Parker, after his old chief. This youngster was sent into the navy
to follow his father's footsteps, and in a later chapter of this book he
will be heard of again.

The ex-governor wrote in September, 1808, a letter from Bath.

    "As this letter may probably reach you before you sail, I just
    write to say that I came here on Tuesday with Mr. Etheridge, on
    his return to London, merely to see Admiral Phillip, whom I found
    much better than I possibly could expect from the reports I had
    heard, although he is quite a cripple, having lost the entire use
    of his right side, though his intellects are very good, and his
    spirits are as they always were."

This letter was to the boy Phillip, then a year-old sailor, on the eve of
his departure on a cruise in the Channel. Seven days later the writer had
slipped his moorings, and years earlier than his old comrade had "gone
before to that unknown and silent shore."



The details of Australian sea exploration are beyond the scope of this
work, but in a future chapter some reference will be made to the
marvellous quantity and splendid quality of naval surveying in Australian

The story of Flinders and Bass, of the work they performed, and the
strange, sad ending to their lives is worth a book, much more the small
space we can devote to it. Much has been written about these two men, but
the best work on the subject, that written by Flinders himself, has now
become a rare book, to be found only in a few public libraries, and too
expensive for any but well-to-do book-lovers to have upon their shelves.
The printing in New South Wales by the local Government of the records of
the colony has led to the discovery of a quantity of interesting material
never before published, and in this there is much relating to Flinders and
Bass--so much, in fact, that the work of the two men could be described
from contemporary letters and despatches, material, if not new to
everyone, certainly known to very few.

The dry technicalities of the surveying work, interesting enough to the
people of those places on the coasts of Australia which are now
flourishing seaports, but where not a century ago Bass and Flinders landed
for the first time, are too local in their interests to warrant more than
a passing reference here. The bold explorers met with so many stirring
adventures that the present writers can only "reel off the yarn," and let
lovers of topography go, if they are so inclined, to the charts, and study
how much valuable map-making, as well as exciting incident, these young
men crowded into their lives.

When Hunter returned to New South Wales in the _Reliance_ to take office
as governor, he brought with him Matthew Flinders as second lieutenant;
and to Sir Joseph Banks, whose influence secured the appointment, this is
only one of the many debts of gratitude owed by New South Wales for his
foresight and honesty in making such selections. Flinders was then
twenty-one years of age. His father was a surgeon at Donington, a village
in Lincolnshire.

[Illustration: GEORGE BASS. From a miniature. From "The Historical
Records of New South Wales" [Sydney, 1889, etc.]. _To face p._ 168.]

_Robinson Crusoe_, so he himself tells us, sent him to sea, and his
departure from home was soon followed by that of his brother Samuel.
Matthew served first in the _Scipio_ under Pasley; then he accompanied
Bligh in the _Providence_ to Tahiti, and thence to the West Indies (this
was Bligh's successful bread-fruit voyage); then he was in the
_Bellerophon_, and was present at Lord Howe's victory, "the glorious 1st
of June." Two months later he left in the _Reliance_ for Sydney.

The surgeon of the _Reliance_ was George Bass. From his boyhood Bass
wanted to be a sailor, but was apprenticed, sorely against his will, to a
Boston apothecary. His father was a farmer at Sleaford, in Lincolnshire;
but his mother was early left a widow. The lad served his apprenticeship,
duly walked the hospitals, and his mother spent most of her small
substance in starting him in business as a village apothecary in his
native county. Then, like so many before and since his time, unable to
overcome his first infatuation, he threw all his shore affairs to the wind
and obtained an appointment to the _Reliance_.

Governor Hunter, it will be remembered, took a keen interest in the
exploration of Australia, and he had for some time suspected the
existence of a strait between Van Diemen's Land and the main continent.
Full of desire for adventure and tired of the routine life of a penal
settlement, Flinders and Bass, soon after they landed in the colony, found
a new occupation in the pursuit of fresh discoveries, and Hunter willingly
lent them such poor equipment as the limited resources of the colony

A month after the arrival of the _Reliance_ at Sydney the two friends set
to work, and in an eight-foot boat, which they appropriately named the
_Tom Thumb_, went poking in and out along the coast-line, making
discoveries of the greatest local value. Then began work destined to be of
world-wide importance.

Take the map of Tasmania and look at a group of islands at its north-east
corner; they are in what was later on to be called Bass' Straits. Among
them are two named Preservation and Clarke Islands; these and Armstrong
Channel commemorate the wreck of the _Sydney Cove_, which occurred on
February 9th, 1797. The _Sydney Cove_ was an East Indiaman bound from
Bengal to Sydney; she sprang a leak, was with difficulty navigated to the
spot named Preservation Island, and there beached.

[Illustration: CAPTAIN MATTHEW FLINDERS, R.N. From the "Naval Chronicle"
for 1814.] [Sidenote: _To face p_. 170.]

The crew, many of whom were Lascars, were saved, with a few stores. Then
the long-boat, with the mate, supercargo, three European seamen, and a
dozen Lascars, was despatched in an endeavour to reach Port Jackson, the
only occupied part of the great continent, and bring succour to their
starving shipmates. They set out on the 28th February, were driven ashore;
their boat was battered to pieces on the rocks, and they escaped only with
their lives. This happened on the 1st of March, the scene of this second
misfortune being a little distance to the north of Cape Howe, 300 miles
from Sydney. These castaways were the first white men to land in what is
now the colony of Victoria. (The spot where the boat was lost is just over
the border.) After resting the men then all set out to march along the
coast to Sydney.

Sixty days later three exhausted creatures reached Wattamolla harbour,
near what is now the National Park of New South Wales, about 18 miles
south of Sydney. The remainder of the castaways had dropped and died of
exhaustion on the march, or had been speared by the blacks. Those who
survived had purchased their lives from the savages with shreds of cloth
and buttons from their ragged clothing, and had kept themselves alive
with such shell-fish as they could find upon the beaches. At Wattamolla
they had halted to cook a scanty meal of shell-fish, and the smoke of
their fire revealed their presence to a fishing boat from the settlement
at Port Jackson. The fire by which this cooking was done was made from
coal found on the beach there; so reported brave Clarke, the supercargo of
the _Sydney Cove_, who found it.

As soon as Hunter heard of the discovery he determined to examine the
place. In a despatch home he says:--

    "So I have lately sent a boat to that part of the coast, in which
    went Mr. Bass, surgeon of the _Reliance_. He was fortunate in
    discovering the place, and informed me he found a stratum six feet
    deep in the face of a steep cliff, which was traced for eight
    miles in length; but this was not the only coal they discovered,
    for it was seen in various places."

The place was named Coalcliff, and this was the first discovery of the
great southern coalfields of New South Wales. Hunter, writing to the Duke
of Portland under date of March 1st, 1798, shall tell the next incident of
Bass' career:--

    "The tedious repairs which His Majesty's ship          [Sidenote: 1798]
    _Reliance_ necessarily required before she could be put in a
    condition for again going to sea having given an opportunity to
    Mr. George Bass, her surgeon, a young man of a well-informed mind
    and an active disposition, to offer himself to be employed in any
    way in which he could contribute to the benefit of the public
    service, I inquired of him in what way he was desirious of
    exerting himself, and he informed me nothing could gratify him
    more effectually than my allowing him the use of a good boat and
    permitting him to man her with volunteers from the King's ships. I
    accordingly furnished him with an excellent whale-boat, well
    fitted, victualled, and manned to his wish, for the purpose of
    examining along the coast to the southward of this port, as far as
    he could with safety and convenience go. His perseverance against
    adverse winds and almost incessant bad weather led him as far
    south as the latitude of 40°00 S., or a distance from this port,
    taking the bendings of the coast, of more than 600 miles." (This,
    remember, was accomplished in a whale-boat.) "He coasted the
    greatest part of the way, and sedulously examined every inlet
    along the shore, which does not in these parts afford a single
    harbour fit to admit even a small vessel, except a bay in latitude
    35°06, called Jarvis' Bay, and which was so named by one of the
    transport ships, bound here, who entered it, and is the same
    called by Captain Cook Longnose Bay. He explored every accessible
    place until he came as far as the sourthermost [sic: southernmost]
    parts of this coast seen by Captain Cook, and from thence until he
    reached the northernmost land seen by Captain Furneaux, beyond
    which he went westward about 60 miles, where the coast falls away
    in a west-northwest direction. Here he found an open ocean
    westward, and by the mountainous sea which rolled in from that
    quarter, and no land discoverable in that direction, we have much
    reason to conclude that there is an open strait through, between
    the latitude of 39 and 40'12 S., a circumstance which, from many
    observations made upon tides and currents thereabouts, I had long

    "It will appear by this discovery that the northermost [sic:
    northernmost] land seen by Captain Furneaux is the southernmost
    extremity of this coast, and lays in latitude 39.00 S. At the
    western extremity of Mr. Bass' coasting voyage he found a very
    good harbour; but, unfortunately, the want of provision induced
    him to return sooner than he wished and intended, and on passing a
    small island laying off the coast he discovered a smoke, and
    supposed it to have been made by some natives, with whom he wished
    to have an opportunity of conversing. On approaching the shore he
    found the men were white, and had some clothing on, and when he
    came near he observed two of them take to the water and swim off.
    They proved to be seven of a gang of fourteen convicts who escaped
    from hence in a boat on the 2nd of October last, and who had been
    treacherously left on this desolate island by the other seven, who
    returned northward. The boat, it seems, was too small for their
    whole number, and when they arrived at Broken Bay they boarded
    another boat [lying] in the Hawkesbury with fifty-six bushels of
    wheat on board; then they went off with her to the northward,
    leaving their old boat on shore.

    "These poor distressed wretches" (the seven convicts discovered by
    Bass), "who were chiefly Irish, would have endeavoured to travel
    northward and thrown themselves upon His Majesty's mercy, but were
    not able to get from this miserable island to the mainland. Mr.
    Bass' boat was too small to accommodate them with a passage, and,
    as his provision was nearly expended, he could only help them to
    the mainland, where he furnished them with a musket and ammunition
    and a pocket compass, with lines and fish-hooks. Two of the seven
    were very ill, and those he took into his boat, and shared his
    provisions with the other five, giving them the best directions in
    his power how to proceed, the distance" (to Sydney) "being not
    less than five hundred miles. He recommended them to keep along
    the coast the better to enable them to get food. Indeed, the
    difficulties of the country and the possibility of meeting hostile
    natives are considerations which will occasion doubts of their
    ever being able to reach us.

    "When they parted with Mr. Bass and his crew, who gave them what
    cloaths they could spare, some tears were shed on both sides. The
    whale-boat arrived in this port after an absence of twelve weeks,
    and Mr. Bass delivered to me his observations on this adventur'g
    expedition. I find he made several excursions into the interior of
    the country wherever he had an opportunity. It will be sufficient
    to say that he found in general a barren, unpromising country,
    with very few exceptions; and, were it even better, the want of
    harbours would render it less valuable.

    "Whilst this whale-boat was absent I had occasion to send the
    colonial schooner to the southward to take on board the remaining
    property saved from the wreck of the ship _Sydney Cove_, and to
    take the crew from the island she had been cast upon. I sent in
    the schooner Lieutenant Flinders, of the _Reliance_ (a young man
    well qualified), in order to give him an opportunity of making
    what observations he could amongst those islands; and the
    discoverys which was made there by him and Mr. Hamilton, the
    master of the wrecked ship, shall be annexed to those of Mr. Bass
    in one chart and forwarded to your Grace herewith, by which I
    presume it will appear that the land called Van Dieman's, and
    generally supposed to be the southern promontory of this country,
    is a group of islands separated from its southern coast by a
    strait, which it is probable may not be of narrow limits, but may
    perhaps be divided into two or more channels by the islands near
    that on which the ship _Sydney Cove_ was wrecked."

The exploring cruise in a whale-boat had lasted from December 3rd, 1797,
to February 25th, 1798, and we have before us a log kept by Bass of the
voyage. Bass describes in detail all that Hunter tells in his despatch,
but the intrepid explorer scarcely mentions the hardships and dangers with
which he met. Incidentally he tells how the boat leaked, what heavy seas
were often successfully encountered, and how "we collected and salted for
food on our homeward voyage stormy petrels" and like luxuries.

Flinders meanwhile, as Hunter says in his despatch, had been sent in the
colonial schooner _Francis_ to bring back the castaways    [Sidenote: 1799]
from the _Sydney Cove_, who remained anxiously waiting for succour on
Preservation Island. On the way down the young lieutenant discovered and
named many islands and headlands--the Kent group, the Furneaux group, and
Green Cape are only a few names, to wit--and he came back fully convinced
that the set of the tide west "indicated a deep inlet or passage through
the Indian Ocean." He had no time on this trip to make surveys, but on his
return to Sydney he found that George Bass had just come in in his
whale-boat with his report. Hunter and the two young men agreed that the
existence of the strait was certain, and that the next thing to do was to
sail through it.

The colonial sloop _Norfolk_, built at Norfolk Island, a few months
before, to carry despatches, was selected for the service. She was very
small, only 25 tons burden. Flinders was given the command, and Bass was
sent with him. The sloop was accompanied by a snow called the _Nautilus_,
which was bound to the Furneaux group on a sealing expedition. The voyage
lasted from October 7th, 1798, till January 12th, 1799, and in that period
the explorers circumnavigated Van Diemen's Land, making so many
discoveries and naming so many places, that a mere mention of them would
fill a chapter. At the end of his log, Flinders tells us that on arrival
at Port Jackson--

    "to the strait which had now been the great object of research,
    and whose discovery was now completed, Governor Hunter, at my
    recommendation, gave the name of Bass' Straits. This was no more
    than a just tribute to my worthy friend and companion for the
    extensive dangers and fatigues he had undergone in first entering
    it in the whale-boat, and to the correct judgment he had formed
    from various indications of the existence of a wide opening
    between Van Dieman's Land and New South Wales."

Six months later the _Norfolk_, with Flinders on board, sailed along the
north coast, making many discoveries, but missing the important rivers.
Then he returned to England in the _Reliance_. His tried comrade and
friend, Bass, had already left the colony when the _Norfolk_ entered
Sydney Heads, and _his_ after-adventures and still mysterious fate, so far
as can be conjectured, are told in what follows.

A company was floated in England to carry stores to Port Jackson on the
outward trip, and load for return at the islands in the Pacific or such
ports as could be entered on the South American coast. A ship called the
_Venus_ was purchased for the purpose, and Bass and his father-in-law (he
had just married) and their relations held the principal shares in her.
The ship was under the command of one Charles Bishop; but Bass sailed in
her as managing owner and supercargo.

The _Venus_ arrived safely at Sydney, and Bass made a contract with the
authorities to bring a cargo of pork from Tahiti. On his return from this
voyage another contract was concluded between him and Governor King to
continue in this trade. Meanwhile Bishop, the master of the vessel, had
fallen ill, and Bass took command; and the following letter, dated Sydney,
February 3rd, 1803, and written to Captain Waterhouse, his brother-in-law,
in England, was the last news his friends ever heard from Bass:--

    "I have written to you thrice since my arrival from the South Sea
    Islands. In a few hours I shall sail again on another pork voyage,
    but it combines circumstances of a different nature also.

    "From this place I go to New Zealand to pick up something more
    from the wreck of the old _Endeavour_ in Dusky Bay, then visit
    some of the islands lying south of it in search of seals and fish.
    The former, should they be found, are intended to furnish a cargo
    to England immediately on my return from this trip; the fish are
    to answer a proposal I have made to Government to establish a
    fishery, on condition of receiving an exclusive privilege of the
    south part of New Zealand and of its neighbouring isles, which
    privilege is at once to be granted to me. The fishery is not to be
    set in motion till my return to old England, when I mean to seize
    upon my dear Bess, bring her out here, and make a _poissarde_ of
    her, where she cannot fail to find plenty of use for her tongue.

    "We have, I assure you, great plans in our heads; but, like the
    basket of eggs, all depends upon the success of the voyage I am
    now upon.

    "In the course of it I intend to visit the coast of Chili in
    search of provisions for the use of His Brit. Majesty's colony;
    and, that they may not in that part of the world mistake me for a
    contrabandist, I go provided with a very diplomatic-looking
    certificate from the governor here, stating the service upon which
    I am employed, requesting aid and protection in obtaining the food
    wanted. And God grant you may fully succeed, says your warm heart,
    in so benevolent an object; and thus also say I. Amen, say many
    others of my friends.... Speak not of So. America, where you may
    hear I am digging gold, to anyone out of your family, for there is
    treason in the very name.... Pleasing prospects surround us, which
    time must give into our hands. There are apparent openings for
    good doings, none of which are likely to be tried for till after
    my return and dissolution of partnership with Bishop, a point
    fully fixed upon. With kind love to Mrs. W. and all your family, I
    am, even at this distance and at this length of time, and under
    all my sad labours, as much as when I saw you."

At this time Bass was a young man of thirty-four,          [Sidenote: 1817]
"six feet high, dark complexion, wears spectacles, very penetrating
countenance," says his father-in-law. Nothing more was heard of the
_Venus_ or her crew until there arose a rumour that the ship had been
taken by the Spaniards on the coast of Peru. A Captain Campbell, master of
the _Harrington_, is alleged to have made the statement that a Spanish
gentleman told him that Bass had been seized when landing from his boat
and carried to the mines, and that the ship was afterwards taken and the
crew sent to share the fate of their chief. The cause of this seizure was,
says one unauthenticated account, because Bass requested permission to
trade, was refused, and then threatened to bombard the town.

Lieutenant Fitzmaurice was at Valparaiso in 1803, and he states that all
British prisoners in Chili and Peru had been released, and that he had
heard of Mr. Bass being in Lima five or six years before. A letter in the
Record Office, London, dated Liverpool, New South Wales, December 15th,
1817, says:--

    "I have just heard a report that Mr. Bass is alive yet in South
    America. A capt'n of a vessel belonging to this port, trading
    among the islands to the east, fell in with a whaler, and the
    capt'n informed him he had seen such a person, and described the
    person of Mr. Bass. The capt'n, knowing Mr. Bass well, is of a
    belief that, [from] the description that the master of the whaler
    gives of him, it's certainly Mr. Bass, being a doctor, too, which
    is still a stronger reason.

    I am, etc., THOS. MOORE."

And so in this sad fashion, his fate a mystery, perhaps the victim of
savages on some lonely Pacific island, perhaps dragging his life out a
broken-hearted prisoner in the mines of Peru, the gallant young explorer
passes out of history.

When Flinders returned to England he found an enthusiastic admirer and a
powerful friend in Sir Joseph Banks. The young lieutenant was getting
ready for publication a small book describing the circumnavigation of Van
Diemen's Land, and while he was doing this Banks induced the Admiralty to
prepare H.M.S. _Investigator_ for surveying service in Australian waters
and give Flinders charge of her, with the rank of commander. Banks had
everything to do with the arrangements for the expedition; and how much
was thought of his capacity for this work is shown by a memo from the
Secretary to the Admiralty in reply to a request           [Sidenote: 1800]
from the naturalist:--

    "Any proposal you may make will be approved; the whole is left
    entirely to your decision."

The _Investigator_, formerly the _Xenophon_, was a sloop of war, and was
fitted out in a most elaborate fashion for the cruise, carrying with her
an artist (Westall), a botanist (Brown), an astronomer (Crossley), and
several other scientists.

Among her officers were Samuel Flinders, second lieutenant and brother of
Matthew, and a midshipman named John Franklin, afterwards Sir John
Franklin, the Arctic explorer and at one time governor of Tasmania. Her
total complement numbered 83 hands. The _Lady Nelson_, a colonial
government brig, was ordered, on the arrival of the _Investigator_ at Port
Jackson, to join the expedition and act as tender to the larger vessel,
and her history is scarcely less remarkable than that of the little vessel
_Norfolk_, Flinders' old command, which by this time had been run away
with by convicts, and "piled up" on a beach near Newcastle, New South

The _Investigator_ sailed, and Flinders made Cape Leeuwin on September
7th, 1801. He ran along the south and east coasts, met the Baudin
expedition in Encounter Bay, and entered Port Phillip on April 26th, 1802,
and found that the _Lady Nelson_ had preceded him in the February before.
Arriving in Sydney in May, he sailed again a couple of months later to the
northward, surveying the Great Barrier Reef, Torres Straits, the Gulf of
Carpentaria, and the coast of Arnhem's Land. By this time the ship was too
unseaworthy to prosecute further work, so Flinders sailed round the entire
continent by way of the Leeuwin, and finally arrived in Sydney harbour
again in June, 1803.

In these voyages he performed exploring work that is now a part of English
history, and his charts of the Australian coasts were the foundation of
all others that have since been made. He either first used the name of
Australia or adapted it to the great continent, and New Holland, after the
publication of his charts, began to be a name of the past.

Most of the remainder of this story can best be told in the words of
Flinders and from the narratives of his officers.

The long and rough voyage of the _Investigator_ had shaken her poor old
carcase terribly, as the following summary of              [Sidenote: 1805]
an examination by the captains of the men-of-war then in Sydney Harbour
and others will show:--

    "On the port side out of ninety-eight timbers, eleven were sound,
    and sixty-three were uncertain if strained a little; on the
    starboard five out of eighty-nine timbers were good, fifty-six
    were uncertain, and twenty-eight rotten; the planking about the
    bows and amidships was so soft that a stick could be poked through

Considering all these defects it was not worth while to keep her, so she
was converted into a hulk in Sydney Harbour. But later on it was found
that by cutting her down it might be possible to navigate her to England.
This was done, and the old ship sailed from Sydney on May 24th, 1805,
under the command of Captain Kent, who managed with the greatest
difficulty to reach Liverpool on the 14th of October following. In his
despatch announcing her arrival he says:--

    "A more deplorable, crazy vessel than the _Investigator_ is,
    perhaps, not to be seen. Her maintopmast is reefed a third down;
    we have been long without topgallantmasts, being necessitated to
    take the topgallant rigging for running gear."

And Governor King, anxious to do Flinders justice, says:--"I hope no
carping cur will cast any reflection on him respecting the _Investigator_
... should it be so it will be an act of great injustice," and then he
alludes to the thoroughly rotten condition of the ship. He was quick, too,
to recognize the immense value of the work accomplished by Flinders, and
made him every offer of help that lay within his power to continue the

There were not more than half a dozen vessels in the colony, but Flinders
could have any one of them he liked, but they were all too small and unfit
for such a severe service. At last it was decided that he should return
home as a passenger in the _Porpoise_; some of his fellow-workers on the
_Investigator_ accompanied him, others went to the East Indies, and one or
two stayed behind. It was with a feeling of intense satisfaction that
Flinders took possession of his comfortable cabin on the _Porpoise_, for
he was looking forward to an agreeable rest after the hardships he had
undergone. The quarter-deck was taken up by a greenhouse protecting the
plants collected on the _Investigator's_ voyage, and designed for the
King's garden at Kew.

Early in August, accompanied by two returning transports, the _Cato_ and
_Bridgewater_, the _Porpoise_, under Lieutenant Fowler, sailed out of
Sydney Harbour, and steered a northerly course along the coast, closely
followed by the other two ships. With Flinders on board to consult, Fowler
had no fear of the dangers of the Barrier Reef, and with a lusty
south-east breeze, and a sky of cloudless blue, the three ships pressed
steadily northward. Four days later they arrived at a spot about 730 miles
north of Sydney, just abreast of what is now Port Bowen, on the Queensland

It was the second dog-watch, the evening was clear, and the three ships
were slipping slowly over the undulating Pacific swell. Flinders was below
chatting to his friends about old times, and the officers were having a
quiet smoke, when a cry of "Breakers ahead!" from both the quarterdeck and
forecastle rang out in the quiet night. The helm was put down, but the
vessel had not enough way on, and scarce brought up to the wind. Flinders,
for the moment thinking he was on board the old _Investigator_ again,
turned to the officer near him and said with a quiet smile: "At her old
tricks again; she wants as much tiller rope as a young wife."

A few minutes later he rose and went on deck to look around. The cry of
"Breakers ahead!" had nothing alarming in it to him, so he had not
hurried; but one quick glance showed him that the ship was doomed, for
the breakers were not a quarter of a cable's-length away, and the inset of
the swell was rapidly hurrying the ship to destruction. Two minutes later
a mountain sea lifted the _Porpoise_ high, and took her among the roaring
surf. In another moment she struck the coral reef with a thud that shook
her timbers from keel to bulwarks; then the ship fell over on her beam
ends in the savage turmoil, her deck facing inshore. So sudden was the
catastrophe that no one could fire a gun for help or for warning to the
other ships, which were following closely. As the ship rolled over on her
beam ends, huge, thundering seas leapt upon and smothered her, and the
darkness of the night was accentuated by the white foam and spume of the
leaping surf. In a few moments the foremast went, the bottom was stove in,
and all hope was abandoned; and then during a momentary lull in the
crashing breakers they saw the _Cato_ and _Bridgewater_ running directly
down upon the _Porpoise_. For some seconds a breathless, horror-struck
silence reigned; then a shout arose as the two transports shaved by the
stricken ship and were apparently saved.

But their rejoicing was premature, for a minute or two later the _Cato_
struck upon an outlying spur of the reef, not a cable-length away. Like
the _Porpoise_, she at once fell over on her side, but with her deck
facing the sweeping rollers, and each succeeding wave spun her round and
round like a top and swept her fore and aft. The _Bridgewater_ escaped,
and a light air enabled her to stand to the north out of danger.

Flinders at once took command on the _Porpoise_, a small gig was lowered
to leeward, and with half a dozen men, two odd, short oars, and shoes and
hats for balers, he set out to struggle through the breakers to a calm
ring of water beyond, where they might find a sandbank to land upon, or
get within hailing distance of the _Bridgewater_. Meanwhile Fowler was
thinking of lightening the _Porpoise_ and letting her drive further up on
the reef; but fear was expressed that she might be carried over its inside
edge, and founder in 17 fathoms of water. The two cutters were launched,
and stood by under the lee of the ship throughout the long, weary night in
case she broke up. At intervals of half an hour, blue lights flared over
the dismal scene, and lit up the strained, white faces of those watching
for the lights of the ship that was safe, and which, either not seeing or
not heeding their distress, had disappeared from view.

During the night the wind blew high and chill, the sea increased in fury,
and the ship groaned and shuddered at each fresh onslaught. Fowler,
however, was hard at work constructing a raft, ready for launching at
dawn, and his men, exhausted as they were, bore themselves as do most
British seamen in the hour of death and danger.

Flinders meanwhile had succeeded in reaching the lagoon within the reef,
and he and his men jumped out of the boat, and walked to and fro in the
shallow water to keep themselves warm and out of the wind; but they sought
in vain to discern the lights of the _Bridgewater_. But the _Bridgewater_
had sailed on to meet another fate. She reached India safely, then left
again for England, and was never afterwards heard of. It is difficult to
understand how her people could have avoided seeing the others' distress;
it is harder still to believe that, seeing their plight, the
_Bridgewater's_ company could have thus deserted the castaways. Of course,
this explanation would have been demanded, but the _Bridgewater_ was an
"overdue" ship long before the news of the disaster arrived in England.

As the sun rose, the scene looked less hopeless, and the men found that
they were near a small sandbank, on which were a quantity of seabirds'
eggs. Close by were the _Porpoise_ and _Cato_ still holding together on
the reef. Returning to the former ship, Flinders at once sent a boat to
rescue the exhausted crew of the _Cato_, who flung themselves into the
waves, and were picked up safely.

Then all hands from both wrecks--marvellous to say, only three men were
lost during the night--set to work under his directions, and collected all
the food and clothing they could possibly obtain. With the warmth of the
sun their spirits returned, and the brave fellows took matters merrily
enough, many of them decking themselves out in the officers' uniforms, for
their own clothing could not be reached. A landing was soon effected, and
a topsail yard was set up as a flagstaff, with the blue ensign upside
down, though but little hope was entertained of passing vessels in such a
place. In all there were 94 people under Flinders' care, and they made
themselves comfortable in sailcloth tents on the barren sand spit. Enough
food had been saved from the _Porpoise_ to last for three months; but to
Flinders' grief many of the papers, charts, and pictures dealing with his
explorations were sadly damaged. Among the articles saved was a picture of
Government House, Sydney, in 1802, and this and some others are now in the
possession of the Royal Colonial Institute, London.

The bank upon which the castaways lived was only 150 fathoms long by 50
broad, and about 3 feet above water. Whilst looking for firewood some of
Flinders' men found an old stern-post of a ship of about 400 tons, which
he imagined might have belonged to one of the ships of the La Pérouse

Wearily enough the time passed, and then Flinders determined to attempt to
reach Sydney in one of the ship's boats. He chose a six-oared cutter, and
raised her sides with such odd timber as he could find. She was christened
_The Hope_, and on the 26th August he with the commander of the _Cato_, 12
seamen, and three weeks' provisions, bade farewell to their comrades, and
with a cheer, set out with bold hearts upon their voyage.

[Illustration: WRECK REEF. From an engraving by John Pye, after a drawing
by W. Westall, A.R.A. From Flinders' "Voyage to Terra Australia" [London,
1814]. _To face p. 192._]

_The Hope_ reached Sydney safely on the 8th September, and Flinders and
his companions went straight to Government House, where King was having
dinner. The Governor leapt from his chair with astonishment, almost taking
them for spectres, so half starved and distressing was their appearance.

"But," says Flinders, "as soon as he was convinced of the truth of the
vision, and learned the melancholy cause, a tear started from the eye of
friendship and compassion, and we were received in the most affectionate

Alas for poor Flinders! There were yet in store for him worse miseries,
and tears of sorrow from those nearer and dearer to him were yet to flow
in abundance in the many weary years of waiting yet to come.



In Governor King, Flinders had a firm friend, and one who sympathized
deeply with his misfortune, as was soon evinced. But the first thing to be
done was to rescue the castaways on Wreck Reef, as Flinders had named the
scene of the disaster, and the master of the ship _Rolla_, bound to China,
was engaged by King to call at the reef with provisions and convey to
Canton all those of the ships' companies who preferred going to that port;
and the _Francis_, a schooner of 40 tons, sent in frame from England in
1792, was to accompany the _Rolla_ and bring back those of the shipwrecked
men who chose to return to Port Jackson.

But for Flinders himself King did more: he offered him the use of a small
vessel to sail to England to convey home the charts and journals of the
_Investigator_ voyage. The vessel was named the _Cumberland_; she was only
29 tons, and had been built in Sydney, but Flinders was satisfied that
she was capable of performing the voyage; and both he and King, being men
of action, decided that she should sail, in company with the _Francis_ and
_Rolla_, to the scene of the wreck, where Flinders was to select officers
and men to man her for the voyage to England, a temporary crew being given
him for the run down to the reef. King told Flinders to choose his own
route for the voyage home, to sell the little vessel at the Cape or
elsewhere if he thought fit, and engage another to continue the voyage,
and, in fact, gave his friend a free hand.

The Australian press of the day consisted of the _Sydney Gazette_, then in
its first year of existence, and sometimes printed on odd scraps of
wrapping paper by reason of the shortness of other material, and this
paper, speaking of the _Cumberland_, says, "She is a very good sea-boat,
and in every way capable of carrying enough water and provisions for
Captain Flinders and the officers and nine men who are appointed to
navigate the first vessel built in the colony to England."

Nevertheless there were many naval men who thought the venture dangerous
in the extreme, and sought to dissuade Flinders from undertaking it. But
his was no timorous nature--"a small craft, 'tis true," he said
laughingly, "but mine own."

With all papers necessary to prove his identity and his dearly-loved
journals and charts on board, Flinders bade farewell to his trusty friend
King, and on September 21st, 1803, the three vessels, the lumbering
_Rolla_ and the two midgets of schooners, put to sea. Before midnight,
just after leaving Port Jackson, the three ships were flying before a
south-easterly gale, and the _Cumberland_ was reduced to a close-reefed
mainsail and jib, and she was so exceedingly crank that Flinders
considered it was not safe to run her even in a double-reefed topsail
breeze. Then, in spite of her recent repairs, she leaked like a basket,
and after an hour and a half's cessation from pumping the water was awash
on the cabin floor. But nevertheless she was more weatherly than either
the _Rolla_ or _Francis_, for in working to windward at night-time
Flinders would have to run down four miles or so in the morning to join
them, although they carried all the sail they possibly could.

A fortnight later they arrived at Wreck Reef, and when Flinders sent King
an account of the trip down, he gave the Governor some idea of the
discomforts experienced. He wrote in a humorous vein:--

    "Of all the filthy little things I ever saw, this schooner, for
    bugs, lice, fleas, weevils, mosquitos, cockroaches, large and
    small, and mice, rises superior to them all.... I have never
    stripped myself before the last two nights, but usually slept upon
    the lee locker with my clothes on.... I believe that I, as well as
    my clothes, must undergo a good boiling in the large kettle."

In the evening of the 7th October the three vessels anchored under the lee
of Wreck Island, to the great joy of its tenants, and as soon as Flinders
landed on the bank they gave him three cheers and fired a salute from the
carronades saved from the wreck. The _Porpoise_ still held together, and
the castaways had, during Flinders' absence, built a boat of 20 tons,
which they had rigged as a schooner and named the _Resource_, and on that
very day some of them were out sailing her on her trial trip. This little
vessel Flinders sent to King as some compensation for the _Cumberland_.

As soon as possible the shipwrecked men embarked, some on the _Rolla_ for
China, the rest on the _Francis_ and _Resource_ for Sydney; then Flinders
said good-bye and sailed northward for Timor, where he arrived thirty
days later. Here he wrote again to King; then came another letter dated
from the Mauritius, August 8th, 1804:--

    "Thus far, my dear sir, I had written to you from Coupang, in case
    of meeting a ship by which it might have been sent, little
    expecting that I should have finished it here, and in a prison.

    "We found the upper works of the schooner constantly leaky, and
    the pumps became so much worn by constant use as to be rendered
    unserviceable, and made it absolutely necessary to put in at this
    island to get the schooner caulked and the pumps refitted before
    attempting the passage round the Cape of Good Hope. I also
    considered that, in case of a new war, I had no passports from the
    Dutch, as well as that by putting in here I should be able to
    ascertain how far the French settlements in this neighbourhood
    might answer your purpose of supplying Port Jackson with cattle.
    Having no chart or instructions relating to Mauritius, I came
    round the south end of the island, and followed a small vessel
    that I wanted to speak into a little harbour there" (Baye du Cap),
    "and, to my surprise, found that the French were again at war with
    our nation. After being detained one day I got a pilot, and came
    round to Port N.W." (Port Louis) "on December 16th last. I waited
    upon the captain-general, and, after being kept two hours in the
    street, had an audience, but it was to be told that I was an
    imposter, the improbability of Captain Flinders coming in so small
    a vessel being thought so great as to discredit my passport and
    commission. Finally, Mr. Atkin, formerly master of the
    _Investigator_, and me were brought ashore as prisoners at 2
    o'clock in the morning, all my books and papers were taken away,
    and a sentinel with fix't bayonet was placed in the room where we
    lodged. After undergoing an examination next day, I thought
    circumstances were going in my favour, but in three days an order
    was issued to put my seamen on board the prison-ship, the vessel's
    stores in the arsenal, and the schooner to be laid up. As for Mr.
    Atkin and me, we continued in the house of our confinement, but
    with this difference, that the sentinal was placed without side of
    our room, and I was permitted to have my servant, and afterwards
    obtained my printed books and some unfinished charts upon which to
    employ myself.

    [Illustration: GOVERNMENT HOUSE, PORT JACKSON. From a drawing by
    W. Westall, A.R.A., in the possession of the Royal Colonial
    Institute. Photographed by permission of the Council. _To face p.

    "I expostulated with General de Caen upon this uncommon and very
    harsh treatment, but could obtain no satisfaction or public
    information than that I had deviated from the voyage for which the
    passport had been granted by touching at the Isle of France, and
    that my uncommon voyage from Port Jackson to this place was more
    calculated for the particular interests of Great Britain than for
    those of my voyage of discovery. In fine, I was considered and
    treated as a spy, and given to understand that my letters gave
    great offence.

    "I became very ill in this confinement, the scurvy breaking out in
    my legs and feet. A surgeon was sent to attend me, but altho' he
    represented the necessity of taking exercise, yet was I not
    permitted to take a walk outside in the air for near four months,
    or was any person allowed to speak to me without the general's
    permission. Through the intercession of the excellent Captain
    Bergeret, of the French navy, I was removed to the house where
    the English officers, prisoners of war, were confined. This house
    is situated a little without the town, enjoys a pure air, and is
    surrounded by a wall enclosing about two acres of ground. In this
    place Mr. Atkin and me soon recovered our health, and here we have
    remained to this day. Thro' my friend Bergeret, I have lately
    obtained the greatest part of my books and charts, and therefore
    am assiduously employed in repairing the ravages that were made
    amongst them by the _Porpoise's_ shipwreck, and in making others
    to complete the hydrographical account of my voyage. Admiral
    Linois, as well as Bergeret and another naval captain, interested
    themselves that I might be sent to France, but it was positively
    refused, upon the principle that I must wait until orders were
    received concerning me from the French Government; and an
    application to be sent into the interior part of the island, where
    we might enjoy good exercise and some society, was no more

    "This account will not a little surprise you, my dear sir, who
    have so lately shown every attention to the _Geographe_ and
    _Naturaliste_; but a military tyrant knows no law or principle but
    what appears to him for the immediate interest of his Government
    or the gratification of his own private caprices. Passports,
    reciprocal kindness, and national faith are baits to catch
    children and fools with, and none but such consider the propriety
    of the means by which the plans are to be put into execution. Men
    of genius, heroes (that is, modern French generals), are above
    those weaknesses. I can give you no further explanation of General
    de Caen's conduct except that he sent me word I was not considered
    to be a prisoner of war, and also that it was not any part of my
    own conduct that had occasioned my confinement.

    "What I am suffering in promotion, peace of mind, fortune, fame,
    and everything that man holds dear, it is not my intention to
    detail, or have I room; but when added to shipwreck and its
    subsequent risks, they make no very common portion of suffering.
    How much I deserve all this may be left to your friendly judgement
    to decide. It is impossible for me to guess how long I am to be
    kept here, since the French despatches, as well as the letters I
    have been permitted to write, will probably be thrown overboard on
    the ship meeting with our cruisers. However, I think my foe begins
    to be touched with some remorse of conscience. We have accounts by
    Admiral Linois of the China fleet having lately passed, and in it
    my officers and people, who, I hope, are before this time in
    England. Having a private opportunity of sending a letter to
    India, I commit this to the care of Mr. Campbell for you; and may
    you, my kind friend, and yours never feel to know the unlimited
    power of a man before whom innocence and hardship are of no avail
    to save from his severity."

In Flinders' book we are told that the explorer, when ordered by petty
officials to remain in Baye du Cap with the _Cumberland_ until General de
Caen's pleasure was known, said: "I will do nothing of the kind; I am
going to Port Louis overland, and I shall take my commission, passport,
and papers to General de Caen myself." The officers were a little
crestfallen, but the Englishman's short, precise, active manner left
nothing to be said, so he went on shore in his simple, severe, threadbare,
brine-stained coat, as though Matthew Flinders, of the _Cumberland_, 29
tons, His Majesty's exploring vessel, was fully the equal of any hectoring
French governor-general.

While waiting in an ante-room to see the governor, some French military
officers came in, and began to talk to the Englishman, asking him, among
other things, if he had ever come across "M. Flinedare, who was not
unknown to fame." It took him some time to find out that it was himself.
At last an interpreter took him into the governor's reception room, where,
without preface, de Caen brusquely said: "Where is your passport and your
commission; and why did you come without the _Investigator_?"

"She was so rotten fore and aft that she crumbled at a touch," was the

"Have you an order to come to this isle? Why did you come?"

"Necessity made me," answered Flinders calmly.

"You are imposing, sir," angrily replied de Caen; "you know it is not
possible that the governor of New South Wales would send you out in so
small a boat. Take him away, and treat him well," he added, turning to the
guard, and this was Flinders' last hour of freedom for years to come.

His quarters, shared with Atkin at first, were in a small house, part of a
café, "under the dark entry, and up the narrow stairs into a bedroom,
while the door was bolted, and the regular tramp, tramp, of the sentry
kept on hour after hour."

It was a meagre room, containing two truckle-beds, two rush-bottomed
chairs, a broken old gilt-bordered looking-glass, and evil smells. At 6
a.m. the sleeping men were wakened by the patrol of an armed grenadier in
the bedroom--a needless annoyance. The meals of fresh meat, bread, fruit,
and vegetables were a luxury.

Monistrol, the colonel commanding the garrison, a few days later took
Flinders to the home of General de Caen, whose secretary again asked why
his vessel was so small. Where were his scientific men, why did he go to
Port Northwest at all, and why did he chase a vessel? (This query referred
to his endeavour to overtake a pilot-boat.) He gave his reasons in full,
and expected to be allowed to go back to the _Cumberland_. Shortly
afterwards a message came from the governor asking him to dinner, but he
refused, saying, "Unless I am a free man, I will not come to the
governor's table."

On July 12th, 1804, he wrote to Sir Joseph Banks:--

    "Since my imprisonment in this island I have written to you, Sir
    Joseph, several letters, and by several conveyances. Some of them
    must no doubt have been received. General de Caen still keeps me
    closely confined, but he has lately given me the greater part of
    my books and papers, and, therefore, I shall again be able to
    proceed in preparing the accounts of our discoveries.

    "I have now been kept in prison seven months. The time passes
    drearily along, and I have yet to remain five months longer before
    any orders are likely to be received concerning me from the French
    Government; and then it is uncertain of what nature they may be,
    since it is not known what statement the General has made of my
    particular case; and probably the vessels carrying the despatches
    will be taken, and the letters thrown overboard, in which case it
    cannot be guessed how long I may be kept. My dependence,
    therefore, is on the Admiralty demanding me to be given up, by
    virtue of the French passport, in which, even here it is
    acknowledged, there has been no infringement on my part further
    than in intention, which intention has been misconstrued and
    misunderstood by a man violent against the name of an Englishman,
    and ignorant of what relates to voyages of discovery.

    "This arbitrary man is now doing me the greatest injury without
    even making a plea for it. His own subjects (for he is a most
    despotic monarch), Frenchmen, who are acquainted with the
    circumstances, condemn him for it; but the generality cannot
    believe that the commander of a voyage of discovery, whose labour
    is calculated for the good of all nations, should be kept a
    prisoner without something greatly wrong on his part; and, since
    no crime is charged against me, it is currently reported here that
    I have not the requisite papers to prove my identity.

    "I hope, Sir Joseph, that, even from the charts which I have sent
    home, you will think we did as much as the lateness of the season
    with which we first came upon the coast, and the early rottenness
    of the _Investigator_ could well allow; and I think our labours
    will not lose on a comparison with what was done by the
    _Geographe_ and _Naturaliste_. No part of the unfortunate
    circumstances that have since occurred can, I believe, be
    attributed to my neglects or mistakes; and therefore I am not
    without hope that, when the Admiralty know I am suffering an
    unjust imprisonment, they will think me worthy to be put upon the
    post-captains' list. My age now exceeds the time at which we judge
    in the navy a man ought to have taken his station there who is to
    arrive at anything eminent. It would soften the dark shade with
    which my reflections in this confinement cannot but be overspread
    to know that I was promoted to the list where my rank would be
    progressive. It is to you only, Sir Joseph, that I can address
    upon this subject. I have had ample testimonies of your power and
    of the strength of your mind in resisting the malicious
    insinuations of those who are pleased to be my enemies, nor do I
    further doubt your willingness to give me assistance than that I
    fear you do not yet think me worthy of it; but I will be. If I do
    not prove myself worthy of your patronage, Sir Joseph, let me be
    thrown out of the society of all good men. I have too much
    ambition to rest in the unnoticed middle order of mankind. Since
    neither birth nor fortune have favoured me, my actions shall speak
    to the world. In the regular service of the navy there are too
    many competitors for fame. I have therefore chosen a branch which,
    though less rewarded by rank and fortune, is yet little less in
    celebrity. In this the candidates are fewer, and in this, if
    adverse fortune does not oppose me, I will succeed; and although I
    cannot rival the immortalized name of Cook, yet if persevering
    industry, joined to what ability I may possess, can accomplish it,
    then will I secure the second place, if you, Sir Joseph, as my
    guardian genius, will but conduct me into the place of probation.

    "But this is visionary, for I am so fast in prison that I cannot
    get forth. The thought is bitterness. When I recollect where and
    what I am, and compare it with where and how I ought to be
    employed, it is misery; but when to this the recollection of my
    family and the present derangement of their affairs from my
    absence are added, then it is that the bonds enter deep into my

While his money lasted, Flinders spent it in buying fruit and vegetables
for his imprisoned crew; when cash ran out, he drew a bill on the
Admiralty. The interpreter who undertook to get it cashed was nearly
killed by the soldiers for carrying, as they thought, a private letter.
Eventually the Danish consul cashed this bill for the Englishmen, and
gave them full value for it, which, considering the state of the times,
shows that he was a truly good man.

The _Cumberland_ was taken to the head of the harbour and converted into a
hulk, and a document was brought to Flinders to sign in which--in truly
French fashion--he was asked to accuse himself of being a spy. He promptly
refused the request, which was again and again made, and he always scorned
to comply. While his papers were being overhauled, Flinders managed to
secure some of them, and among other things the signal-book, which he

De Caen's report to his Government shows the view he took of these
proceedings. In it he says:--

    "Commander Flinders, formerly captain of the corvette
    _Investigator_, sent by the English Government for work of
    discovery in the Pacific Ocean, has altered absolutely the mission
    for which he had obtained from the French Government the passport
    signed by the Minister for Marine. In such passport he is
    certainly not authorized to land at the Isle of France to study
    the prevailing winds, the port, or the state of the colony, and by
    this conduct he has violated the neutrality under which he had
    been permitted to land. It is necessary therefore to order M.
    Monistrol, chief of the battalion, to board the schooner
    _Cumberland_ in the presence of Captain Flinders, break the seals
    put on his room, and gather certain papers which may be required
    to complete proofs already in existence of the charge against him.
    The room is then to be resealed, and Captain Flinders to be taken
    back to the house where he has already been confined as prisoner.
    The crew of the schooner are meanwhile to be kept prisoners on the

Flinders wrote repeatedly by every vessel into which he could smuggle a
letter, to Banks, to King, and to his superiors in England. Many of these
letters never arrived, but what letters did reach home aroused the
indignation of his friends; and Sir Joseph Banks in England, King in
Sydney, and many others worked hard to effect the release of the prisoner.

To de Caen Flinders wrote several letters, giving him some "straight
talk." Here are some extracts:--

    "If you say it is a breach of neutrality to come here for the
    reasons I did, how is it that when your discoverers put into Port
    Jackson, etc., they were received well? In war-time Baudin and
    Hamelin took notes, and were not interfered with.... I was chosen
    by Sir Joseph Banks to complete Cook's work, and am not a spy. If
    I had come as a spy, what have I done? Why not wait till the eve
    of sailing to arrest me? I have been a prisoner since the first
    hour I landed."

sculpt._ Taken from the brow of the hill leading to the Flagstaff. From
Collins' "An Account of the English Colony in New South Wales" [London,
1798]. _To face p._ 208.]

The governor's answer was--                                [Sidenote: 1804]

    "It is useless to get up a discussion, as you do not appreciate
    the delicate motive of my silence. I say, until matters are
    advanced more, say nothing, as you know so little of the rules of
    good manners."

This rude letter maddened Flinders. He wrote another long epistle, setting
forth reasons for letting him go, even to France, promising to say not a
word of Mauritius and stating again the absolute simple necessity of his
visit. He could extract no answer.

The heat was fearful. All the respectable people in the place were gone to
the hills, and Flinders and his men nearly died of the horrible
confinement. His letters were opened, and very few reached England. At
home Sir Joseph Banks set to work, and did his best for the poor prisoner.
On August 29th, 1804, he (Banks) wrote to Governor King a long letter,
which is full of things he was disinterestedly doing for the colony, and
that letter says:--

    "Poor Flinders, you know, I suppose, put into the Isle de France
    for water, and was detained as a prisoner and treated as a spy.
    Our Government have no communication with the French; but I have
    some with their literary men, and have written, with the
    permission of the Government, to solicit his release, and have
    sent in my letter a copy of the very handsome one M. Baudin left
    with you. If this should effect Flinders' liberation, which I
    think it will, we shall both rejoice."

In June, 1805, Banks wrote to Flinders from London, detailing what had
been done:--

    "From the moment that I heard of your detention, I have used every
    effort in my power towards effecting your release. As the enmity
    between the Governments of France and England is carried to such a
    height that no exchange has on any pretence been effected, they
    could do nothing for you. I therefore obtained permission in
    August last to address the National Institute of France requesting
    their interference to obtain your release as a literary man, a
    mode by which I have obtained the release of five persons from the
    gracious condescension of the Emperor, the only five, I believe,
    that have been regularly discharged from their _parole_.

    "My letters were unfortunately detained in Holland some months,
    and, in fact, did not arrive at Paris till April. I received,
    however, an immediate and favourable answer, which proves that the
    literary men in Paris will do all in their power to obtain your
    liberty; but, unfortunately, the Emperor of the French was in
    Italy, where he still remains, when my letter arrived.

    "I confess, however, I entertain sanguine hopes of a favourable
    answer, when he shall return to Paris, from the marked and
    laudable attention His Imperial Majesty has always shown to
    scientific men. As far as I know, your friends here are well. Mrs.
    Flinders I heard of very lately, as full of anxiety for your
    return. I have heard many times from her on the subject, and
    always done my utmost to quiet her mind and soothe her

    "All your letters to me and to the Admiralty have, I believe, been
    safely received. Your last, containing the last sheet of your
    chart, I forwarded to the Hydrographical Office at the Admiralty,
    as you desired.

    "We have had a succession of First Lords of the Admiralty since
    Lord Spencer, no one of them favourable to the pursuit of
    discovery, and none less than the present Lord Barham, late Sir
    Charles Middleton. As he, however, is eighty-four years old,
    either his mind or his body must soon become incapable of any
    exertion whatever. I have no news to tell you relative to
    discovery. M. Baudin's voyage has not yet been published. I do not
    hear that his countrymen are well satisfied with his proceedings.
    Captain Bligh has lately been nominated governor of New South

Meanwhile prizes taken by the French were coming into the Mauritius, and
there were many English prisoners on the island. Their detention became a
little less wearisome with work, music, billiards, astronomy, and pleasant
companionship. It was a curious company. Prisoners who were gathered from
many parts of the world and grades of society strove only to make the time
pass easily, and succeeded until de Caen heard of this and ordered, in his
usual haughty style, that "spy-glasses and such things" should be taken
away, and if anything were concealed, then the prisoners were to be kept
in close confinement, and if they showed themselves outside of the house,
were to be shot. Their swords were demanded. Flinders refused to give his
up to the petty officer sent to receive it. "Very well," said the
inconsistent de Caen, "as he is not a prisoner, he may keep his."

In July, 1805, the captive wrote to Banks this letter:--

    "My last letter to you was dated May 16th, and sent by Mr. Atkin,
    the master of the _Investigator_, who, having obtained his leave
    to depart, took his route by the way of America. He had not been
    gone many days when an English squadron of four ships appeared off
    this island, and they are now cruising round it; and about a
    fortnight since two cartels arrived here with French prisoners
    from Calcutta and Ceylon. In return for these, all the prisoners
    of war in this island are to be sent back, and I only to be
    excepted. It seems that, notwithstanding my imprisonment has
    continued near nineteen months, the French governor has not
    received orders from his Government as to the disposal of my
    person and papers. They have told him he did right to detain and
    secure me; but their final decision is deferred to their next
    despatches. These are expected very soon, and then possibly I may
    be either liberated, or sent to France to be tried as a spy.

    "The French captain Bergeret, who arrived from Calcutta, professes
    to be much interested for me; and, since he has influence with
    General de Caen, it is possible that I may obtain some little
    indulgence of liberty after my countrymen are gone.    [Sidenote: 1805]
    Both justice and humanity ought to have obtained this at least for
    me before; but it seems to be only to private favour and party
    interest that any concession is made by this arbitrary general.

    "Upon the supposition that the first despatches from France will
    occasion my removal, I expect to be in England or in France, upon
    a reasonable computation, about February or March, 1806, at which
    time I anxiously hope and pray that I may find you, my best and
    most powerful friend, in the possession of health and happiness,
    and my country enjoying the sweets that must arise from an
    honourable peace.

    "Had I been permitted to go to India with the other prisoners, it
    was my intention to have applied to Sir Edward Pellew for a ship
    to go upon the north-west coast of New Holland, to ascertain the
    existence of an entrance into an inland sea, near the Rosemary
    Isles of Dampier, previously to my return to Europe, for during
    the continuance of such a war as the present, I can scarcely hope
    to get a ship in England to complete the _Investigator's_ voyage.
    This project, however, is now dissipated."

And again in November of the same year he wrote:--

    "I have already informed you of a permission I received, after the
    departure of all the prisoners of war, to leave my place of
    confinement, and reside in the country on account of my health. I
    have now for nearly three months resided in this district, almost
    in the middle of the island, with a very agreeable and
    respectable family, from whom I receive every kindness and
    attention, and with the permission to extend my walks six miles

    "Since my residence in this district I have not had the least
    communication with General de Caen, but the liberty I now enjoy is
    a sufficient proof that he has ceased to consider me as a spy; and
    I firmly believe that, if he had not said to the French Government
    during the time of his unjust suspicions of me that he should
    detain me here until he received their orders, he would have
    gladly suffered me to depart long since, for he has the character
    of having a good heart, though too hasty and violent."

By this time all other prisoners had been exchanged, and Flinders alone,
with an old, lame seaman (his servant) were the only English remaining.

It was not altogether wonderful that the captive should be forgotten.
Trafalgar was fought while Flinders was a prisoner, and in Europe people
could hardly be expected to remember one solitary prisoner of the French
so far away.

What delay was in those days may be seen from the fact that a letter
arrived on July 18th, 1807, from Sir Edward Pellew, commanding the
_Duncan_, Madras Roads, June 21st, stating that papers had been really
sent for the captive's release. A private letter was enclosed inviting
Flinders to come and stop in India with Pellew.            [Sidenote: 1807]
The copy of the letter Flinders received drove the resentment deeper into
his heart, for it stated that the Paris authorities approved of de Caen's
action, but granted Flinders liberty in pure generosity. In July, 1804,
this letter had been approved by the authorities; in March, 1806, it had
been signed by the Emperor; and in July, 1807, it had arrived in
Mauritius, and yet the copy that left London in December reached Mauritius
first. Flinders wrote again to de Caen, and was told to "wait a bit." Was
ever such an unfortunate man as Matthew Flinders?

In December, 1809, when Flinders had been prisoner in the island seven
years, the English blockaded the port, and the Englishmen were kept closer
than ever. Then arrived the _Harriet_ to exchange prisoners, and in March
of the following year Flinders was informed that he was to be one of the
men exchanged. But it was actually July, 1810, before the _Harriet_ got
away, for the English, not knowing that they were detaining their own
countrymen, kept such a close blockade that the ship could not get out to
sea; and when she did get outside, notwithstanding many attempts on the
part of the captain to communicate with an English ship and put Flinders
on board, he could not overtake one. It turned out afterwards that the
English fleet had heard of Flinders being on board the _Harriet_ and gave
her a wide berth, thinking that by this means the French would understand
that she was at liberty to pursue her way to Europe and land Flinders
without molestation from his countrymen.

Ultimately Flinders reached the Cape of Good Hope, and from thence
England. When he arrived he received a warm enough welcome from his
relatives and immediate friends, but the public had too many stirring
events to talk about to think of him, and so publicly his services were
practically forgotten. Among other indignities he suffered, he found that
the charts taken from him by de Caen had been appropriated to Baudin's
exploring expedition. The remainder of his life he devoted to writing his
book, _An Account of a Voyage to Terra Australia_, which was published on
the very day of his death (July 14th, 1814). Almost his last words were:--

"I know that in future days of exploration my spirit will rise from the
dead, and follow the exploring ships."

Flinders had married in 1801 Ann, daughter of Captain      [Sidenote: 1814]
Chappell, and by her he had one daughter, Mrs. Annie Petril, who was in
1852 granted, by the joint Governments of New South Wales and Victoria, a
pension of £200 a year, which she enjoyed until her death in 1892.



Bligh arrived in New South Wales, and relieved King as governor, in
August, 1806. His two years' administration in the colony is noteworthy
for nothing but the remarkable manner of its termination. Just as Sir John
Franklin's name will live as an Arctic explorer and be forgotten as a
Tasmanian governor, so will the name of Bligh in England always recall to
mind the _Bounty_ mutiny and scarcely be remembered in connection with
Australian history.

Any number of books, and a dozen different versions, have been written of
the mutiny. There is Sir John Barrow's _Mutiny of the "Bounty,"_ which,
considering that the author was Secretary to the Admiralty, ought to be,
and is, regarded as an authority; there is Lady Belcher's _Mutineers of
the "Bounty,"_ by far the most interesting, and probably, notwithstanding
a strong anti-Bligh bias, an impartial account of          [Sidenote: 1806]
facts. It is no wonder Lady Belcher was no admirer of Bligh. Heywood, the
midshipman who was tried for his life, was her step-father, and she had
very good reason to remember Bligh with no friendly feeling. There are
other books, some of them as dull as they are pious and inaccurate, others
containing no quality of accuracy or piety, and only dull; and there is
Bligh's own narrative of the affair, remarkable for its plain account of
the mutiny and the writer's boat voyage and the absence of a single word
that could throw a shadow of blame upon the memory of Captain Bligh.
Byron's poem of "The Island" is, of course, founded on the _Bounty_
mutiny, but the poet has used his licence to such an extent that the poem,
which, by the way, some of the poet's admirers say is one of his worst,
has no resemblance to the facts. In 1884 Judge McFarland, of the New South
Wales District Court, wrote a book on the mutiny, and this work, for the
reason that it was published in a remote part of the world, is little
known; yet it is probably the best book on the subject. The Judge marshals
his facts with judicial ability, and he sums up in such a manner the
causes leading to the mutiny, that if Bligh were on trial before him we
are afraid the jury would convict that officer without leaving the box.

A critic whose opinion is entitled to the greatest weight, having read the
manuscript of this and the next chapter before it went to press,
considered that, although we had written of Bligh's harshness to his men
as proved, we had not specifically alluded to the proof. For this reason,
and because the story of the _Bounty_ mutiny, like every event that
happened in the South Seas a hundred years ago, is interwoven with the
early history of Australia, we propose to retell the story shortly. And
since it seems that Bligh's tyrannical character is still a fact not taken
for granted by everyone, we will endeavour, not to justify the mutiny, but
to show that, by all the rules of evidence, Bligh's behaviour to his
ship's company is proved to have been of the aggravating character alleged
by his shipmates, and that the _Bounty_ was not, as Bligh represented her
to be, what is called by sailors "a happy ship."

Another reason for retelling the story is, that, notwithstanding that the
name of the _Bounty_ sounds most familiar in most people's ears, yet we
have some evidence that the present generation has         [Sidenote: 1776]
almost forgotten nearly everything relating to it.

A few years ago one of the authors went to Norfolk Island, so remote a
spot that visits are counted not so many to the year, but so many years to
a visitor. It was thought that an account of the descendants of the
_Bounty_ mutineers would be of interest to English magazine-readers.
Everyone, it was supposed, knew all about the _Bounty_ mutiny, so half a
dozen lines were devoted to it, the rest of the space to the present state
of the old Pitcairn families. The article was hawked about to most of the
London magazine offices, and was invariably rejected, on the ground that
no one remembered the _Bounty_ mutiny, and that an account of the event
would be much more acceptable. It appears from many recently printed
allusions to the mutiny that the magazine editors rightly judged their

Bligh's first visit to the South Seas was when, under Cook, he sailed as
master of the _Resolution_ in 1776-9. A native of Plymouth, of obscure
parentage, he was then about twenty-three years old, and had entered the
service through the "hawse-pipe."

By Cook's influence, he was in 1781 promoted lieutenant, and later,
through the influence of Sir Joseph Banks, was given the command of the
_Bounty_, which sailed from Spithead on December 23rd, 1787, for Tahiti.

The _Bounty_ was an armed transport of 215 tons burden. Her mission was to
convey breadfruit to the West Indian islands, the planters having
represented to George III. that the introduction of the plant would be
very beneficial as an article of food. The ship was fitted up in a manner
peculiar, but adapted to the service she was upon. She was 90 feet long,
her greatest beam 24 feet, and her greatest depth of hold about 10 feet.
This limited space was divided in the following manner: 19 tons of iron
ballast and provisions and stores for the ship's total complement (46
persons) in the hold; in the cockpit cabins for some subordinate officers;
on the 'tween-decks a small room for Bligh to sleep in, another for a
dining and sitting-room, and a small cabin for the master. Then from right
aft to the after-hatchway a regular conservatory was rigged up. Rows and
rows of shelves, with garden-pots for the plants, ran all round; regular
gutters were made to carry off the drainage when the plants were watered,
and water being precious, the pots drained into tubs, so that the water
might be used again, while special large skylights admitted air and light.
On the foreside of this cabin lived the more subordinate officers, and
still further forward the crew.

The crew under Bligh consisted of a master (Fryer), a gunner, boatswain,
carpenter, surgeon, 2 master's mates, 2 midshipmen, 2 quarter-masters, a
quarter-master's mate, boatswain's mate, a carpenter's mate and a seaman
carpenter, a sail-maker, armourer, and a ship's corporal, 23 able seamen,
and a man who acted as clerk and ship's steward. Besides there were two
gardeners who had been selected by Sir Joseph Banks.

The _Bounty_, on her way to Tahiti, touched at Teneriffe, Simon's Bay, and
at Adventure Bay, Van Diemen's Land. On arrival at Tahiti, she spent
nearly five months in Matavai Bay loading the breadfruit plants. Now,
according to Bligh, up to this point all had gone well on the ship, and
everyone had seemed happy and contented; according to every other person
on board, whether friendly or inimical to Bligh, there was a good deal of
unpleasantness and discontent during the whole passage. According to
Bligh, the beauty of the Tahitian women, the delightful ease and charm of
island existence in contrast to the hardships of the sailor's life,
tempted certain of the men into what followed; according to all other
witnesses, it is admitted that the men were so tempted, that desertions
took place, and the deserters were taken and severely punished before the
ship left the island. But, say certain witnesses, when the mutiny broke
out the seductions of Tahiti were less the cause of the outbreak than the
tyrannical and coarse conduct of Bligh.

In due course the ship sailed in continuation of her voyage. Then on the
night of Monday, April 28th, 1789, the master, John Fryer, had the first
watch, the gunner, William Peckover, the middle watch, and Fletcher
Christian, the senior master's mate, the morning watch. Just as the day
was breaking, when the ship was a few miles to the southward of Tofoa, one
of the Friendly Island group, Bligh was rudely awakened by the entrance to
his cabin of Christian and three of the crew. He was told he would be
killed if he made the least noise, and Christian, armed with a cutlass,
the others with muskets and fixed bayonets, escorted him to the deck,
after first tying his hands behind him. The master, the gunner, the acting
surgeon, Ledward (the surgeon had died and was buried at Tahiti), the
second master's mate, and Nelson, one of the botanists,    [Sidenote: 1789]
were at the same time secured below. The boatswain, carpenter, and clerk
were allowed to come on deck, and the boatswain, acting under threats from
the mutineers, hoisted out the launch.

Bligh used every endeavour, first by threats, and then by entreaties and
promises of forgiveness, to induce the crew to return to their duty, and
Fryer, the master, if he had received the least support, would also have
made an attempt to retake the ship. But the mutineers threatened instant
death to any who attempted resistance.

The boat being hoisted out, the names of certain of the officers and crew
were called, and these were ordered to enter her. Bligh was compelled to
follow, and she was then dropped astern. Christian handed Bligh a sextant
and a book of nautical tables, saying, as he did so, "This book is
sufficient for every purpose, and you know, sir, my sextant is a good
one." Four cutlasses, a 28-gallon cask of water, 150 pounds of bread, 6
quarts of rum, 6 bottles of wine, 32 pounds of pork, twine, canvas, sails,
some small empty water-casks, and most of the ship's papers were put in
the boat, and she was cast adrift.

At the last moment, according to Bligh, Christian, in reply to a question
as to what sort of treatment was this in return for all the commander's
kindness, said, "That, Captain Bligh, that is the thing: I am in hell";
according to the evidence at the court-martial, not of mutineers, but of
the master and other officers who were cast adrift from the _Bounty_, what
Christian did say was in reply to entreaties to reconsider what he was
doing, when his words were--"No, no. Captain Bligh has brought all this on
himself: it is too late; I have been in hell for weeks past."

With Bligh in the boat were eighteen persons, and twenty-five remained on
the _Bounty_. The boat was 23 feet in length, 6 feet 9 inches in breadth,
and 2 feet 9 inches in depth. When loaded with all these people and her
stores, she had not seven inches of freeboard.

From the morning when the boat was cast adrift till forty-two days later,
when her unhappy company were safely landed at Timor, Bligh's behaviour
and the behaviour of those under him is a noble example of courage,
endurance, and resourcefulness.

They first attempted to land at Tofoa, one of the Friendly Islands, but
were driven off by the natives, and one of the seamen was killed. Bligh,
therefore, resolved to land nowhere until he came to the coast of
Australia, or New Holland, as it was then called.

On the twenty-eighth day they made an island off the coast, to which they
gave the name Restoration. Up to this time, they had lived on such food as
they had, served out in a pair of cocoa-nut shell scales, the ration being
a pistol-ball's weight per man morning, noon, and night, a teaspoonful of
rum or wine, and a quarter of a pint of water. Their food was occasionally
varied when they were able to catch boobies. The birds were devoured raw,
and the blood drunk, each man receiving his portion with the utmost

Restoration Island is one of the many little islets that stud the
sea-coast from the Barrier Reef right through Torres Straits, and Bligh's
people found upon it and other similar spots welcome opportunity to
stretch their cramped limbs, besides obtaining fresh water, and plenty of
oysters. Then they continued their journey, making their way through
Torres Straits by a channel still known as Bligh's Passage, and taking a
week from the time of sighting the Australian coast to the time of leaving

A couple of incidents that happened at this time show how it was that
Bligh kept his men so well in hand. One man was sent out to look for
birds' eggs; the sailor, it was discovered, had concealed some of them.
Says Bligh, "I thereupon gave him a good beating. On another occasion one
of the men went so far as to tell me, with a mutinous look, that he was as
good a man as myself. It was not possible for me to judge where this would
end if not stopped in time; therefore, to prevent such disputes in future,
I determined either to preserve my command or die in the attempt, and
seizing a cutlass, I ordered him to take hold of another and defend
himself. On this he called out that I was going to kill him, and made
concessions. I did not allow this to interfere with the harmony of the
boat's crew, and everything soon became quiet."

On the evening of June 3rd, the twenty-third day from leaving Tofoa, they
left the coast of Australia on the north-western side, and stood away for
Timor, where they arrived nine days later, and were received with the
greatest kindness by the Dutch officials and merchants. Their journey of
about 3620 miles had taken forty-two days. One man had lost his life by
the attack of savages, and Nelson, the botanist,      [Sidenote: 1790-1791]
Elphinstone, a master's mate, two seamen, and the acting surgeon, were
attacked by the Batavian fever and died. Bligh and the remainder of his
men secured passages home, and arrived in England in March, 1790.

In the summer of 1791 he was promoted commander, given the command of the
_Providence_, with an armed tender, the _Assistance_, and sent to carry
out the breadfruit transplantation idea, which he satisfactorily
accomplished. But the soil of the West Indian islands would not
successfully grow the fruit, and the people of the West Indies do not like

Meantime the _Pandora_ frigate, Captain Edwards, was sent out to search
for the mutineers. At Tahiti she found no _Bounty_, but two midshipmen,
Heywood and Stewart, and twelve petty officers and seamen of the ship.
These people gave themselves up as soon as the _Pandora_ entered Matavai
Bay, and they informed Captain Edwards that the _Bounty_ had sailed away
with the remainder of the people, no one knew whither. Two other seamen
had been left behind, but one of these had murdered his comrade and a
native man and child, and was himself killed by the natives for these

Stewart and Heywood, master's mate and midshipman, who were very
young--the latter was fifteen at the time of the mutiny--declared to the
captain of the _Pandora_ that they had been detained on the _Bounty_
against their wishes; but Captain Edwards believed nothing, listened to no
defence. He built a round-house on the quarter deck, and heavily ironing
his prisoners locked them up in this.

Stewart while on shore had contracted a native marriage, and after he had
left in the _Pandora_ his young wife died broken-hearted, leaving an
infant daughter, who was afterwards educated by the missionaries, and
lived until quite recent times.

In "Pandora's Box," as Captain Edwards' round-house came to be called, the
fourteen prisoners suffered cruel torture, and nothing can justify the
manner in which they were treated. The frigate sailed accompanied by a
cutter called the _Resolution_, which had been built by, and was taken
from, the _Bounty's_ people at Tahiti on May 19th, 1791, and spent till
the middle of August in a fruitless search among the islands for the
remainder of the mutineers. The _Pandora_ then stood away for Timor,
having lost sight of the _Resolution_, which Edwards did not see again
until he reached Timor.

On August 28th the ship struck a reef, now marked on the chart as
Pandora's Reef, and became a total wreck. All this time the prisoners had
been kept in irons in the round-house. The ship lasted until the following
morning, when the survivors--for thirty-five of the _Pandora's_ crew and
four of the prisoners (among them the unfortunate Stewart) were
drowned--got into the boats and began another remarkable boat voyage to
Timor. While the vessel was going down, instead of the prisoners being
released, by the express order of Captain Edwards eleven of them were
actually kept ironed, and if it had not been for the humanity of
boatswain's mate James Moulter, who burst open the prison, they would have
all been drowned like rats in a cage. This is not the one-sided version of
the prisoners only, but is so confirmed by the officers of the _Pandora_
that Sir John Barrow in his book says that the "statement of the brutal
and unfeeling behaviour of Edwards is but too true."

There were ninety-nine survivors, divided between four boats, and they had
1000 miles to voyage. They landed at Coupang on September 19th, after
undergoing the greatest suffering, aggravated in the case of the prisoners
by the most wanton cruelty on the part of Edwards. From here they were
sent to England for trial, arriving at Spithead on June 19th, 1792, four
years and four months after they had left in the _Bounty_, of which time
these poor prisoners had spent fifteen months in irons. In the following
September the accused were tried by court-martial at Portsmouth Harbour.
Bligh was away on his second breadfruit voyage, but he had left behind him
as much evidence as he could collect that would be likely to secure
conviction, and one of the officers so backed up his statements that young
Heywood, a boy of fifteen, be it remembered, came near to being hanged.
Bligh's suppression of facts which would have proved that the youngsters
Stewart and Heywood were mere spectators at the worst of the mutiny, Sir
John Barrow suggests, has "the appearance of a deliberate act of malice."

The result of the trial was the just acquittal of four of the petty
officers and seamen, the conviction of Heywood, of Morrison, boatswain's
mate (a man of education, who had kept a diary of the whole business), and
of four seamen. Three of these last, one of them seventeen years of age
at the time of the mutiny, were hanged in Portsmouth       [Sidenote: 1807]
Harbour. Heywood, Morrison, and a seaman named Muspratt were pardoned. It
was plain that the authorities recognized the innocence of these men, for
Heywood made a fresh start in the service, and served with distinction,
dying a post-captain in 1831, and Morrison was drowned in the _Blenheim_,
of which ship he was gunner when she foundered off the island of Rodriguez
in 1807.

What had become of the _Bounty_? In March, 1809, there reached the
Admiralty an extract from the log of an American whaler, commanded by
Matthew Folger. This extract showed the Pitcairn Island, hitherto scarcely
known and supposed to be uninhabited, had been visited by the whaler,
which found thereon a white man and several half-caste families. The man
was the sole survivor of the _Bounty_ mutineers, and the half-caste
families were the descendants of the others by their Tahitian wives. In
proof of his statements, Folger brought away with him the chronometer and
azimuth compass of the _Bounty_. War was then going on, and England paid
little attention to the news, until in September, 1814, two frigates, the
_Briton_ and the _Tagus_, visited Pitcairn, when the end of the _Bounty_
story was told to the commander by the sole survivor.

When the _Bounty_ left Tahiti, Christian took with him Young, a
midshipman; Mills, gunner's mate; Brown, one of the two botanists; and
Martin, McCoy, Williams, Quintall, and Smith, seamen. These men were
accompanied by five male islanders from Tahiti and Tubuai (in which last
place they had attempted to form a settlement and failed), three Tahitian
women, wives of the Tahitians, and ten other Tahitian women and a child.

The _Bounty_ was beached and burnt, and from her remains and the island
timber the mutineers built themselves homes. Soon dissensions arose,
murder followed, and within a few years after landing every Englishman
save Smith was dead, nearly all of them dying violent deaths. Smith
changed his name to John Adams, took a Bible from the _Bounty's_ library
as his guide, and set to work to govern and to train his colony of
half-caste children.

From 1815 Pitcairn became a pet colony of the English people, and every
ship that visited it brought back stories of the piety and beautiful
character of its population. Smith or Adams died in 1829. He had long
before been pardoned by the English Government, and        [Sidenote: 1829]
the good work he began was carried on by Mr. Nobbs, one of several persons
who from time to time, attracted by the story of life at Pitcairn, had
managed to make their way to the island.

In 1856 the greater portion of the Pitcairn families were removed to
Norfolk Island, which the English Government had abandoned as a penal
settlement, giving up to them all the prison buildings as a new home.

For years after, Norfolk Island, like Pitcairn, was known as the home of
the descendants of the _Bounty_ mutineers, and was talked of all over the
world in the same strain as that other ideal community at Pitcairn, but
civilization has now worked its evil ways. No longer is Norfolk Island
governed in patriarchal fashion. It has been handed over by the Imperial
Government for administration by the colony of New South Wales, and in a
few years longer all that will remain of its _Bounty_ story will be the
names of Christian, Young, McCoy, Quintall, and the rest of them--still
names which indicate the "best families" of the island.

To this day it is a mystery exactly how and when Christian met his death.
The sole survivor of the mutineers, Smith (_alias_ Adams), when
questioned, went into details regarding the desperate quarrels of his
comrades, and how they came by violent deaths; but whether his memory,
owing to old age, had failed him, or he had something to conceal, it is
impossible now to say. However, he gave versions of Christian's death
which differed materially. The generally accepted one is that he was shot
by one of the Tahitians while working in the garden, but the exact place
of his burial has never been revealed.

In this connection there is a curious story. An English paper called _The
True Briton_ of September 13th, 1796, contained the following paragraph:--


    "This extraordinary nautical character has at length transmitted
    to England an account of his conduct in his mutiny on board the
    _Bounty_ and a detail also of his subsequent proceedings after he
    obtained command of the ship, in which, after visiting Juan
    Fernandez and various islands in South America, he was shipwrecked
    in rescuing Don Henriques, major-general of the kingdom of Chili,
    from a similar disaster, an event which, after many perilous
    circumstances, led to his present lucrative establishment under
    the Spanish Government in South America, for which     [Sidenote: 1796]
    he was about to sail when the last accounts were received from him.

    "In his voyage, etc., which he has lately published at Cadiz, we
    are candidly told by this enterprising mutineer that the revolt
    which he headed on board His Majesty's ship _Bounty_ was not
    ascribable to dislike of their commander, Captain Bligh, but to
    the unconquerable passion which he and the major part of the
    ship's crew entertained for the enjoyments which Otaheite still
    held out to their voluptuous imaginations. 'It is but justice,'
    says he, 'that I should acquit Captain Bligh, in the most
    unequivocal manner, of having contributed in the smallest degree
    to the promotion of our conspiracy by any harsh or ungentlemanlike
    conduct on his part; so far from it, that few officers in the
    service, I am persuaded, can in this respect be found superior to
    him, or produce stronger claims upon the gratitude and attachment
    of the men whom they are appointed to command. Our mutiny is
    wholly to be ascribed to the strong predilection we had contracted
    for living at Otaheite, where, exclusive of the happy disposition
    of the inhabitants, the mildness of the climate, and the fertility
    of the soil, we had formed certain connexions which banished the
    remembrance of old England entirely from our breasts.'"

After describing the seizure and securing of Captain Bligh's person in his
cabin, Christian is made to thus conclude his account of the revolt:--

    "During the whole of this transaction Captain Bligh exerted
    himself to the utmost to reduce the people to a sense of their
    duty by haranguing and expostulating with them, which caused me to
    assume a degree of ferocity quite repugnant to my feelings, as I
    dreaded the effect which his remonstrances might produce. Hence I
    several times threatened him with instant death unless he
    desisted; but my menaces were all in vain. He continued to
    harangue us with so much manly eloquence, that I was fain to call
    in the dram-bottle to my aid, which I directed to be served round
    to my associates. Thus heartened and encouraged, we went through
    the business, though, for my own part, I must acknowledge that I
    suffered more than words can express from the conflict of
    contending passions; but I had gone too far to recede; so, putting
    the best face on the business, I ordered the boat to be cut
    adrift, wore ship, and shaped our course back for Otaheite."

In each of the books by Sir John Barrow and Lady Belcher there is the
following paragraph, almost word for word:--

    "About 1809 a report prevailed in Cumberland, in the neighbourhood
    of his native place, and was current for several years, that
    Fletcher Christian had returned home, made frequent visits to a
    relative there, and that he was living in concealment in some part
    of England--an assumption improbable, though not impossible. In
    the same year, however, a singular incident occurred. Captain
    Heywood, who was fitting out at Plymouth, happened one day to be
    passing down Fore Street, when a man of unusual        [Sidenote: 1809]
    stature, very much muffled, and with his hat drawn close over his
    eyes, emerged suddenly from a small side street, and walked
    quickly past him. The height, athletic figure, and gait so
    impressed Heywood as being those of Christian, that, quickening
    his pace till he came up with the stranger, he said in a tone of
    voice only loud enough to be heard by him, 'Fletcher Christian!'
    The man turned quickly round, and faced his interrogator, but
    little of his countenance was visible; and darting up one of the
    small streets, he vanished from the other's sight. Captain Heywood
    hesitated for a moment, but decided on giving up the pursuit, and
    on not instituting any inquiries. Recognition would have been
    painful as well as dangerous to Christian if this were he; and it
    seemed scarcely within the bounds of probability that he should be
    in England. Remarkable as was the occurrence, Captain Heywood
    attached no importance to it, simply considering it a singular

It is of course extremely improbable that Christian managed to leave the
island before the arrival of the _Topaz_ (Folger's ship), and if Heywood's
impression that he had seen Christian had occurred to him anywhere near
the date of the _True Briton_ paragraph, one might easily account for it
on the ground that the _True Briton_ was a sensation-loving modern daily,
born before its time, and Heywood had read the paragraph. But between 1796
and 1809 was a long interval; no news had come to England of the
mutineers to revive memory of the event, and the curious ignorance of the
Pitcairners of the place of Christian's burial are all circumstances which
leave the manner of the mutineer officer's ending by no means settled.

The Rev. Mr. Nobbs, to whom the early Pitcairners are indebted for so
much, carried on the work of John Adams so well and so piously that he was
sent home to England, ordained a clergyman of the Established Church,
returned to Pitcairn, and then accompanied the emigrants to Norfolk
Island, where he died about ten years ago.

Mr. Nobbs had a very curious history, which we reprint from the Rev. T.B.
Murray's book on Pitcairn:--

    "In 1811 he was entered on the books of H.M.S. _Roebuck_; and,
    through means of Rear-Admiral Murray, he was, in 1813, placed on
    board the _Indefatigable_, naval storeship, under Captain Bowles.
    In this vessel the young sailor visited New South Wales and Van
    Dieman's Land, whence he proceeded to Cape Horn and Cape of Good
    Hope, and thence, after a short stay at St. Helena, he returned to
    England. He then left the British Navy, but after remaining a
    short time at home he received a letter from his old commander,
    offering to procure him a berth on board a ship of 18 guns,
    designed for the assistance of the patriots in South America. He
    accepted this offer, and left England early in 1816 for
    Valparaiso, but the Royalists having regained possession of that
    place, he could not enter it until 1817. He afterwards held a
    commission in the Chilian service, under Lord Cochrane, and was
    made a lieutenant in it in consequence of his gallantry in the
    cutting out of the Spanish frigate _Esmeralda_, of 40 guns, from
    under the batteries of Callao, and during a severe conflict with a
    Spanish gun brig near Arauco, a fortress in Chili. In the latter
    encounter Mr. Nobbs was in command of a craft which sustained a
    loss in killed and wounded of 48 men out of 64, and was taken
    prisoner with the survivors by the troops of the adventurous
    robber General Benevideis. The 16 captives were all shot with the
    exception of Lieutenant Nobbs and three English seamen; these four
    saw their fellow prisoners led out from time to time, and heard
    the reports of the muskets that disposed of them. Ever afterwards
    he retained a vivid memory of that dreadful fusillade. Having
    remained for three weeks under sentence of death, he and his
    countrymen were unexpectedly exchanged for four officers attached
    to Benevideis' army. Mr. Nobbs then left the Chilian service, and
    in 1822 went to Naples. In his passage from that city to Messina
    in a Neapolitan ship, she foundered off the Lipari Islands; and,
    with the loss of everything, he reached Messina in one of the
    ship's boats. In May, 1823, he returned to London in the
    _Crescent_; and in the same year he sailed to Sierra Leone as
    chief mate of the _Gambia_, but of 19 persons who went out in that
    vessel none but the captain, Mr. Nobbs, and two men of colour
    lived to return. In June, 1824, he again went to Sierra Leone,
    now as commander of the same craft, and was six weeks on shore ill
    of fever, but it pleased God to restore him to health in time to
    return with her; and he resigned command on his reaching England.
    Meanwhile the captain of a vessel in which he had once sailed had
    expatiated so frequently on the happiness of the people at
    Pitcairn, where he had been, that Mr. Nobbs resolved to go thither
    if his life should be spared; and, with this object in view, he
    set out on the 12th of November, 1825, in the _Circassian_, bound
    for Calcutta, but he was detained there until August, 1827; then,
    after a narrow escape from shipwreck in the Strait of Sunda, he
    crossed the Pacific in a New York ship called the _Oceani_, went
    to Valparaiso, and thence to Callao, where he met a Mr. Bunker,
    expended £150 in refitting a launch, and made the voyage to

Bligh, in his version of the _Bounty_ mutiny, says that there was
absolutely no cause of discontent on board the ship until the mutineers
became demoralized by their long stay at Tahiti, and that he was on the
best of terms with everyone on board. In proof of this, says Bligh,
Christian, when the boat was drifting astern, was asked by Bligh if this
treatment was a proper return for his commander's kindness, to which the
mutineer answered, "That, Captain Bligh, that is the thing. I am in hell;
I am in hell." Bligh on being asked by the friends of young Heywood if he
thought it possible that this boy of fifteen, who had been detained
against his will, could have a guilty knowledge of the mutiny, replied in
writing that the lad's "baseness was beyond all description. It would give
me great pleasure to hear that his friends can bear the loss of him
without much concern."

Bligh's story is contradicted by all of the mutineers--that, of course,
goes without saying--but here is the point: the evidence of the mutineers
is practically confirmed in every particular, and Bligh's version is
contradicted by the people who were with him in the boat, and these
people, Bligh himself says, were loyal. One man only, Hallett, had
anything to say in confirmation of Bligh's allegations regarding Heywood,
and Hallett afterwards recanted and expressed his sorrow at what he had
alleged against Heywood--his statements, he admitted, were made when he
was not fully responsible for what he said.

Labillardiere, in his _Voyage in Search of La Pérouse_, says that one of
the officers of the _Pandora_ assured some of the people of the La Pérouse
expedition, whom they had met at the Cape, that Bligh's ill-treatment of
the _Bounty's_ people was the cause of the mutiny. Fryer, the master of
the _Bounty_, who, it was shown during the court-martial, had more than
anyone else supported Bligh, confirmed the statement that what Christian
did say when the boat was cut adrift was, in answer to the boatswain, "No.
It is too late, Mr. Cole; I have been in hell this fortnight, and will
bear it no longer. You know that during the whole voyage I have been
treated like a dog." Further than this, the evidence given by the
mutineers, and supported in all essentials by the people cut adrift in the
boat, was to the effect that there had been repeated floggings; that Bligh
had continually used violent and abusive language to officers and men;
that he was a petty tyrant and was guilty of all sorts of mean forms of
aggravation. Here is one instance: he accused officers and men, from the
senior officer under him downwards, of being thieves, alleging publicly on
the quarter-deck that they stole his coconuts.

Against these allegations we have nothing but Bligh's narrative and the
assertions, perfectly true, that he was a brave officer, who afterwards
conducted a remarkable boat voyage and served with distinction under
Nelson,[G] and that such a man could not be guilty of      [Sidenote: 1830]
tyranny. We are here discussing the mutiny of the _Bounty_, and not the
revolt in New South Wales, else against this we might remark that he was
the victim of two mutinies against his rule. Bligh was not the only
coarse, petty tyrant who could fight a ship well; Edwards made a boat
voyage scarcely less remarkable than Bligh's, and Edwards unquestionably
was a vindictive brute. However, Sir John Barrow, who, from his position
as Secretary of the Admiralty, was hardly likely to make rash assertions,
in his book, published about 1830, says very plainly that Bligh, upon the
evidence at the court-martial, was responsible for what happened. The
mutiny being admitted, the members of the court-martial had no alternative
but to convict those who were not with Bligh in the boat, but those who
were not proved to have taken actual part in it, who were not seen with
arms in their possession, were pardoned and ultimately promoted.

[Footnote G: After the battle of Copenhagen, Bligh, who commanded the
_Glatton_, was thanked by Nelson in these words: 'Bligh, I sent for you to
thank you; you have supported me nobly.']

There are a dozen other equally important and quite as strong facts as
these to justify the view of Bligh's character taken by us; but, unless
something better than Bligh's narrative and his subsequent service is
quoted in reply to this side of the case, we think that a jury of Bligh's
countrymen would find that if the mutineers were seduced by thoughts of
Tahiti to take the ship from him three weeks after they had left the
island, and were 1500 miles from it, none the less were they driven into
that act by their commander's treatment of them. But, nevertheless, the
memory of Bligh's heroic courage and forethought in his wonderful boat
voyage from the Friendly Islands to Timor--a distance of 3618 miles--is
for ever emblazoned upon the naval annals of our country, and the wrong he
did in connection with the tragedy of the _Bounty_ cannot dim his lustre
as a seaman and a navigator.



Bligh, at the time of his appointment to New South Wales, was in command
of the _Warrior_, and in the interval between his second breadfruit voyage
and the date of his governor's commission had been behaving in a manner
worthy of one of Nelson's captains. In 1794 he commanded the _Alexander_
(74), which, with the _Canada_, was attacked off the Scilly Isles in
November by a French squadron of five seventy-fours. The _Alexander_ was
cut off from her consort by three Frenchmen, when Bligh sustained their
attack for three hours, and was then compelled to strike his flag, having
lost only 36 men killed and wounded, while the enemy's loss was 450.

Other splendid service of Bligh is related in the following letter, which
was printed in the _Daily Graphic_ under date London, October 28th, 1897.
The letter was signed "Mary Nutting (_née_ Bligh), widow of the late
rector of Chastleton, Oxon., Beausale House, Warwick," and as it is a
spirited defence of a naval officer whose personal character has been
impugned by these present writers as well as many others, we reprint the
letter in full:--

    "Sir,--There are special circumstances relating to the event of
    the battle of Camperdown, the centenary of which was recently
    commemorated, which have never been made public. One is the duel
    fought between the _Director_ and the _Vryheid_, in which the
    Dutch ship was dismasted and destroyed--a naval duel at which no
    other ship on either side was present, or within reach or sight.
    On the previous day (October 11th, 1797) the English and Dutch
    fleets had met, fought, and the Dutch ships were dispersed, or, as
    you stated, 'their line was broken.' The Dutch admiral and his
    ship, however, escaped, and, no doubt, would have again been seen
    at sea had it not been that on October 12th, 1797, the _Director_
    came up with the _Vryheid_, and having, after a severe struggle,
    first silenced and then boarded her, the Dutch admiral went on
    board the English ship, and gave up his sword to the captain. The
    captain was Captain (afterwards Admiral) W. Bligh. Strange to say,
    in the despatches sent home by Admiral Duncan Captain Bligh was
    not mentioned. I have three large water-colour pictures taken from
    sketches done by an artist on board the _Director_ at the time of
    the battle, showing the _Director_ coming up and attacking the
    _Vryheid_, the engagement at its height, and, finally, the
    _Vryheid_ dismasted and a wreck. Bligh was a man whose service was
    great, and, although in due course he became an admiral, he
    received no special reward from his country. In his earlier years,
    at the age of nineteen, he was selected by Sir Joseph Banks, his
    friend through life, to serve with Captain Cook as master on board
    the _Resolution_, in the year 1774, and sailed for four years on
    three voyages with him. After Captain Cook's death the navigation
    of the ship devolved on Bligh, who brought her home. After this,
    for four years, as commander, he traversed unknown seas. He fought
    under Admiral Parker at the Doggerbank, and under Lord Howe at
    Gibraltar. After the battle of Copenhagen, where Bligh commanded
    the _Glatton_, he was sent for by Lord Nelson to receive his
    thanks publicly on his quarter-deck, and the words of the great
    hero were--'Bligh, I thank you; you have supported me nobly.' In
    the time of the mutiny at the Nore, he rendered great services by
    his courage and energetic efforts, recalling many of the
    rebellious sailors to their duty and allegiance.

    "After the mutiny of the _Bounty_, Bligh, with wonderful skill and
    courage, brought the 18 men of his crew, who had been forced with
    him into the _Bounty's_ launch, 23 feet long by 6 feet 9 inches
    wide--a distance of 6318 miles[H]--safely to Timoa. No words can
    say too much of the care he took of them and the devotion shown in
    the effort to save them. On his return to England, he was at once
    made post-captain as a sign of favour, and he was given two ships,
    the _Providence_ and another, to be fitted out at his discretion,
    in which to accomplish the objects for which the _Bounty_ was
    sent. This he did with perfect success. (In his absence the trial
    of the mutineers of the _Bounty_ took place.) As to his
    governorship of New South Wales, let anyone read the fourth
    chapter of Dr. Lang's history of the colony--Lang was no partisan
    or connection of Bligh--which shows beyond dispute that Bligh
    acted, as he always did, with the most scrupulous regard to his
    duty and instructions, and received from time to time the written
    approval of the King, through Lord Castlereagh, then Secretary of

    [Footnote H: Mrs. Nutting has here made a mistake in the distance
    traversed. Timoa is, of course, meant for Timor. (See page 246.)]

    "It has been the pleasure of this generation to malign and
    misrepresent this good man and brave, not once, but continually.
    It originated in false statements made in the defence of two of
    the mutineers, Christian and Heywood, representing Bligh's
    severity and cruelty as being the cause of the mutiny. Yet it can
    be proved from the minutes of the court-martial that Heywood on
    his trial defended himself by swearing that he was kept on board
    the _Bounty_ by force, and that it was 'impossible he could ever
    willingly have done anything to injure Captain Bligh, who had
    always been a father to him.' As to Christian, it can be shown
    that this was the third voyage he had sailed with Captain Bligh.
    Would a man go three times with a commander such as Bligh has been
    described by his enemies?

    "I have no object in writing this account but love for the memory
    of a man who was my mother's father, and so beloved of her and his
    other daughters (for he had no son), that the same love and
    feeling were instilled into the minds of her children. It was
    quite recently asserted in a newspaper that 'Bligh was dismissed
    his ship for ill-conduct after the mutiny of the _Bounty_,' and
    these attacks and false statements are frequent. I know that I am
    asking what you may deem unusual and inconvenient, and yet I have
    faith in your love of justice, and desire to clear the memory of
    one who served his king and country as Bligh did."

Some years ago, an accomplished young lady, well known and much respected
in Norfolk Island, and one of the (two or three generations removed)
descendants by one side of her family from the mutineers, visited England.
An anecdote of this visit was told by the lady herself to one of these
authors. This lady's husband, proud of his wife, took her to England and
to his home in a certain English county, where, in her honour, her
husband's relatives had invited many friends, among them a dear old lady
who they knew was a descendant of Bligh. "What an interesting meeting this
will be!" thought they, not taking into account all the circumstances. The
old lady and the young lady were duly introduced. "Dear me!" said the
young lady, "and so you are the----" (mentioning the relationship) "of the
tyrant Bligh!" "How dare you, the----" (again emphasising the
relationship) "descendant of a base mutineer, thus speak of a
distinguished officer," indignantly exclaimed the old lady. Which little
anecdote shows how very emphatically there are two sides to this story.

Bligh owed his appointment as governor to Sir Joseph Banks, and a letter
from Banks, dated April 19th, 1805, says that he was empowered by Lord
Camden to offer the government of the colony to Bligh at a salary of £2000
a year. Bligh's "Instructions" from the Crown contained a clause which has
an important bearing on his administration. It was as follows:--

    "And whereas it has been represented to us that great evils have
    arisen from the unrestrained importation of spirits into our said
    settlement from vessels touching there, whereby both the settlers
    and convicts have been induced to barter and exchange their live
    stock and other necessary articles for the said spirits, to their
    particular loss and detriment, as well as to that of our said
    settlement at large, we do, therefore, strictly enjoin you, on
    pain of our utmost displeasure, to order and direct that no
    spirits shall be landed from any vessel coming to our said
    settlement without your consent or that of our governor-in-chief
    for the time being previously obtained for that purpose, which
    orders and directions you are to signify to all captains or
    masters of ships immediately on their arrival at our said
    settlement, and you are, at the same time, to take the most
    effective measures that the said orders and directions shall be
    strictly obey'd and complied with."

Why Bligh should have been selected to govern the colony at this
particular period it is difficult to understand, unless it was that, as
appears from official correspondence, Sir Joseph Banks pretty well
controlled the making of Australian history at this        [Sidenote: 1807]
time--nearly always, if not invariably, to the advantage of Australia.

The condition of affairs ought to have been well understood at home.
Hunter and King had both harped upon it in their despatches, and lamented
their inability to remedy the abuses that had grown up. They had made it
no less plain that the New South Wales Regiment, so far from being a force
with which to back authority, was one of the most dangerous elements in
the rum-trading community of the settlement.

Letters from the Home Office indicate that this was in a measure
understood, but the tenor of the despatches also shows that it was thought
the evils arose less from viciousness of the governed than from want of
backbone in the governors.

Bligh's character for courage and resolution may have led to his selection
as a proper person to lick things into shape. It never seems to have
occurred to his superiors that a man whose ship was taken from him by a
dozen mutinous British seamen, if he were more forceful, resolute,
tyrannical, what you will, than diplomatic in his methods, might lose a
colony in which the colonists were not British sailors, but criminals and
mutinous soldiers.

When Bligh landed, the principal agricultural settlements were on the
banks of the rivers Hawkesbury and Nepean, and the settlers were just
suffering from one of the most disastrous floods that have occurred in a
country where floods are more severe than in most others. There was very
little money in the colony, and the settlers carried on a legitimate
system of barter by which they exchanged with each other their grain and
herds. But the floods, of course, threw this system somewhat out of gear,
and he who after the floods had escaped without much damage to his
property had a pretty good pull upon his neighbour whose worldly
belongings had been carried away by the swollen waters.

Bligh, there is no doubt, did the right thing at this time. He slaughtered
a number of the Government cattle, dividing them among the more distressed
colonists; and, to encourage them to go cheerfully to work to cultivate
their land again and to become independent of their fellow-settlers, he
promised to buy for the King's stores all the wheat they could dispose of
after the next harvest, and to pay for it at a reasonable price.

Dr. Lang, in his _History of New South Wales_, published   [Sidenote: 1834]
about 1834, relates how an old settler said to him, "Them were the days,
sir, for the poor settler; he had only to tell the governor what he
wanted, and he was sure to get it from the stores, whatever it was, from a
needle to an anchor, from a penn'orth o' pack-thread to a ship's cable."

This arrangement was not conducive to the interests of the rum traders,
who had been in the habit of purchasing grain and compelling the growers
to accept spirits in payment for it. It operated still further against
them when Bligh made a tour of the colony, took a note of each settler's
requirements and of what the settler was likely to be able to produce from
his land; then, according to what the governor thought the farmer was
likely to be able to supply, Bligh gave an order for what was most needed
by the man from the King's stores.

Of course this was taking a heavy responsibility upon himself. Even
colonial governments nowadays, elected by "one-man-one-vote," scarcely go
so far, but the state of the settlement must be remembered. There were no
shops then, and the general public of the colony, with very few
exceptions, was made up of Government officials and prisoners of the
Crown. But the step was a serious interference with trade--that is, the
rum trade; in consequence those in "the ring" were exasperated, and its
members only wanted Bligh to give them an opportunity to retaliate upon
and ruin him.

MacArthur, now a landed proprietor and merchant, soon after Bligh landed,
paid him a visit, and reminded the new governor of an instruction sent to
King that he (MacArthur) was to be given every encouragement in his
endeavour to develop the pastoral resources of the colony. "Would Governor
Bligh visit his estate on the Cowpasture river" (now Camden), "and see
what had been done in this direction?" to which Governor Bligh, according
to the report of Major Johnston's trial, replied, and with oaths: "What
have I to do with your sheep and cattle? You have such flocks and herds as
no man ever had before, and 10,000 acres of the best land in the country;
but you shall not keep it." Here then was a declaration of war--MacArthur,
too much of a trader to be a soldier, and politician enough to have
enlisted on his side the English Government--which had announced its will
that he should be encouraged as a valuable pioneer colonist--_versus_
Bligh, so much of a warrior as to have fought beside Nelson with honour
and so impolitic as to have lost his ship to a body of     [Sidenote: 1807]
mutineers, some of them officers, of whose discontent, according to his
own showing, he was unaware until the moment of the outbreak.

[Illustration: CAPTAIN BLIGH. From an engraving after J. Russell, R.A.,
in Hugh's "Voyage to the South Sea" [London, 1792]. _To face p. 256._]

The fight began in this fashion. MacArthur had taken a promissory note
from a man named Thompson. When the note became due, a fixed quantity of
wheat was to be paid for its redemption; but, subsequent to the drawing of
the note, came the great flood before mentioned; wheat went to ten times
its former value, and MacArthur demanded payment on the higher scale.
Thompson refused payment at the current rate, alleging that he was only
bound to pay for grain at the rate he received it, although his crops had
not suffered by the floods. The matter came before Bligh to decide, and he
gave judgment against MacArthur, who forthwith ceased to visit Government
House. Then MacArthur was taken ill, Bligh called upon him, and a peaceful
aspect of affairs came over the land, which lasted until early in 1807.

Bligh, in accordance with his special instructions, had issued an order by
which the distillation of spirits was prohibited, and the seizure of any
apparatus employed in such process enjoined. Just about this time Captain
Abbott, of the New South Wales Corps, had sent orders to his London agent
to send him a still. MacArthur happened to employ the same agent, who
thought it a good idea to also send his other patron a still.

In due time the two stills arrived, and were shown in the manifest of the
ship that brought them. Bligh instructed the naval officer of the port to
lodge them in the King's store, and send them back to England by the first
returning ship. The still boilers were, however, packed full of medicine,
and the naval officer, thinking no harm would come of it, allowed the
boilers to go to MacArthur's house, lodging only the worms in the store.
This happened in March. In the following October a ship was sailing for
England, and the proper official set about putting the distilling
apparatus on board of her, when he discovered that the coppers were still
in the possession of MacArthur, who was asked to give them up. MacArthur
replied that, with regard to one boiler, that was Captain Abbott's, who
could do as he liked about it; but, with regard to the other, he
(MacArthur) intended to send the apparatus to India or China, where it
could be disposed of. However, if the governor thought proper, the
governor could keep the worm and head of the still, and the copper he
(MacArthur) intended to apply to domestic purposes. The    [Sidenote: 1808]
governor thereupon, after the exchange of numerous letters between
MacArthur and himself, caused the stills complete to be seized; and then
MacArthur brought an action for an alleged illegal seizure of his

MacArthur was right enough on one detail of this dispute. Bligh had
demanded that he should accept from an official a receipt for "two stills
with worms and heads complete." As MacArthur had never had in his
possession anything but two copper boilers, he naturally refused to commit
himself in this fashion, and would only accept a receipt for the coppers.
The naval officer accordingly took the coppers, and MacArthur took no
receipt for them.

Then happened a more serious affair. MacArthur partly owned a schooner
which was employed trading to Tahiti; in this vessel a convict had stowed
away, and the master of the vessel had left him at the island. The
missionaries wrote to Bligh complaining of this, and proceedings were
begun against MacArthur by the Government to recover the penalty incurred
under the settlement regulations for carrying away a prisoner of the
Crown, and a bond of £900, which had been given by the owners of the
vessel, was declared forfeit.

MacArthur appealed from the court to Bligh, and Bligh upheld the court's
decision. MacArthur and his partners still refused to pay, and the court
officials seized the vessel. MacArthur promptly announced that her owners
had abandoned her, and the crew, having no masters, walked ashore. For
sailors to remain ashore in a penal settlement was another breach of
regulations, chargeable against the owners of the ship from which the
sailors landed, provided the sailors had left the ship with the consent of
the owners; and the sailors declared that the owners had ordered them to
leave the schooner.

MacArthur was summoned to attend the Judge-Advocate's office to "show
cause." He refused to come, on the ground that the vessel was not his
property, but now belonged to the Government. One Francis Oakes, an
ex-Tahitian missionary, who, having disagreed with his colleagues in the
islands, had turned constable, was then given a warrant to bring MacArthur
from his house at Parramatta to Sydney. Oakes came back and reported that
MacArthur refused to submit, and had threatened that if he (Oakes) came a
second time he had better come well armed; and much more to the same
purpose. Accordingly certain well-armed civil officials    [Sidenote: 1808]
went back and executed the warrant, and MacArthur was brought before a
bench of magistrates, over whom Atkins, the Judge-Advocate, presided, and
was committed for trial.

Atkins did not know anything of law, but he had as legal adviser an
attorney who had been transported, and whose character, Bligh himself
said, was that of an untrustworthy, ignorant drunkard.

The court opened on January 25th, 1808. It was formed from six officers of
the New South Wales Corps, presided over by the Judge-Advocate, and the
court-house was crowded with soldiers of the regiment, wearing their side
arms. The indictment charged MacArthur with the contravention of the
governor's express orders in detaining two stills; with the offence of
inducing the crew of his vessel to leave her and come on shore, in direct
violation of the regulations; and with seditious words and an intent to
raise dissatisfaction and discontent in the colony by his speeches to the
Crown officials and by a speech he had made in the court of inquiry over
the seizure of the stills. The speech complained of was to the following

    "It would therefore appear that a British subject in a British
    settlement, in which the British laws are established by the royal
    patent, has had his property wrested from him by a non-accredited
    individual, without any authority being produced or any other
    reason being assigned than that it was the governor's order; it is
    therefore for you, gentlemen, to determine whether this be the
    tenure by which Englishmen hold their property in New South

MacArthur objected in a letter to Bligh, written before the trial, to the
Judge-Advocate presiding, on the ground that this official was really a
prosecutor, and had animus against him. Bligh overruled the objection, on
the ground that the Criminal Court of the colony, by the terms of the
King's patent, could not be constituted without the Judge-Advocate.
MacArthur renewed his objection when the court met; Captain Kemp, one of
the officers sitting as a member of the court, supported MacArthur's view;
and the Judge-Advocate was compelled to leave his seat as president.

MacArthur then made a speech, in which he denounced the Judge-Advocate in
very strong language, and that official called out from the back of the
court that he would commit MacArthur for his conduct. Then Captain Kemp
told the Judge-Advocate to be silent, and threatened       [Sidenote: 1808]
to send him to gaol, whereupon Atkins ordered that the court should
adjourn, but Kemp ordered it to continue sitting. The Judge-Advocate then
left the court, and MacArthur called out: "Am I to be cast forth to the
mercy of these ruffians?"--meaning the civil police--and added that he had
received private information from his friends that he was to be attacked
and ill-treated by the civilians; whereupon the military officers
undertook his protection and told the soldiers in the court to escort him
to the guard-room.

Then the Provost-Marshal said this was an attempt to rescue his prisoner,
went at once and swore an affidavit to this effect before Judge-Advocate
Atkins and three other justices of the peace, and procured their warrant
for the arrest of MacArthur. This was shown to the military officers; they
surrendered MacArthur, who was lodged in the gaol. The court broke up, and
the officers then wrote to Bligh, accusing the Provost-Marshal of perjury
in stating that they contemplated a rescue.

This business had lasted from the opening of the court in the morning
until two o'clock in the afternoon.

Bligh, in accordance with his legal right, had all along refused to
interfere with the constitution of the court. At the same time, there was
no doubt that MacArthur could not have a fair trial if Judge-Advocate
Atkins was to try him, for it was notorious that the two men had been at
enmity for several years. Bligh demanded all the papers in the case from
the officers, who, in his opinion, had illegally formed themselves into a
court. They refused to give them up unless the governor appointed a new
Judge-Advocate, and Bligh replied with a final demand that they should
obey or refuse in writing. Then he wrote to Major Johnston, who commanded
the regiment, and who lived some distance from Sydney, to come into town
at once, as he wanted to see him over the "peculiar circumstances."
Johnston sent a verbal message to the effect that he was too ill to come,
or even to write. This was mere trickery.

The next morning, January 26th (the anniversary of the founding of the
colony), the officers assembled in the court-room, and as no prisoner was
forthcoming for them to try, they wrote a protest to the governor, in
which they set forth that, having been sworn in to try MacArthur, they
conceived they could not break up the court until he was tried; that the
accused had been arrested and removed from the court;      [Sidenote: 1808]
and that, in effect, the sooner the governor appointed a new
Judge-Advocate the better for all parties.

No notice was taken of this letter, but Bligh issued a summons to the
officers to appear before him at Government House to answer for their
conduct, and at the same time he wrote a second letter to Johnston, asking
him to come to town, and got a second reply from that officer, to the
effect that he was still too ill. But he was well enough to continue
plotting against Bligh.

Soon after sending this second letter Johnston rode into town, arriving at
the barracks at five o'clock in the evening. He held a consultation with
his officers, and the upshot of this was that Johnston, as
lieutenant-governor of the colony, demanded the instant release of
MacArthur from gaol. The gaoler complied, and MacArthur went straight to
the barracks, where a requisition to Johnston to place Bligh under arrest
was arranged, at the suggestion of MacArthur, on the ground "that the
present alarming state of the colony, in which every man's property,
liberty, and life are endangered, induces us most earnestly to implore you
instantly to assume the command of the colony. We pledge ourselves at a
moment of less agitation to come forward to support the measure with our
lives and fortunes." This was signed by several of the principal Sydney
inhabitants, and then Johnston proceeded to carry out their and his own
and the other rum-traffickers' designs.

The drums beat to arms; the New South Wales Corps--most of the men primed
with the original cause of the trouble--formed in the barrack square, and
with fixed bayonets, colours flying, and band playing, marched to
Government House, led by Johnston. It was about half-past six on an
Australian summer evening, and broad daylight. The Government House guard
waited to prime and load, then joined their drunken comrades, and the
house was surrounded.

Mrs. Putland, the governor's brave daughter (widow of a lieutenant in the
navy, who had only been buried a week before), stood at the door, and
endeavoured to prevent the soldiers from entering. She was pushed aside,
and the house was soon full of soldiers, who, according to what some of
them said, found Bligh hiding under his bed--a statement which, there is
not the slightest doubt, was an infamous lie, suggested by the position in
which the governor really was found, viz., standing behind a cot in a back
room, where he was endeavouring to conceal some            [Sidenote: 1808]
private papers.

Bligh surrendered to Johnston, who announced that he intended to assume
the government "by the advice of all my officers and the most respectable
of the inhabitants." Johnston caused Bligh's commission and all his papers
to be sealed up, informed the governor that he would be kept a prisoner in
his own house, and leaving a strong guard of soldiers, marched the rest of
his inebriated command back to barracks, with the same parade of
band-playing and pretence of dignity.

The colony was now practically under martial law, and Johnston appointed a
new batch of civil officials, dismissing from office the others, including
the Judge-Advocate, Atkins. MacArthur was then--humorously enough--tried
by the court as newly constructed, and, of course, unanimously acquitted,
Johnston then appointing him a magistrate and secretary of the colony. To
complete the business, the court then took it upon themselves to try the
Provost-Marshal, and gave him four months' gaol for having "falsely sworn
that the officers of the New South Wales Corps intended to rescue his
prisoner" (MacArthur), and at the same time the court sentenced the
attorney who drew the indictment, and managed the legal business for
Atkins, to a long term of imprisonment.

In July, Lieutenant-Colonel Foveaux arrived from England, and was
surprised to find the existing state of affairs. By virtue of seniority,
he succeeded Johnston as lieutenant-governor, and appointed another man in
place of MacArthur, but did not interfere in any other way, contenting
himself with sending to England a full report of the affair. Foveaux was
in turn succeeded by Colonel Paterson, who arrived at the beginning of
1809, and who also declined to interfere in the business, but he granted
Johnston leave of absence to proceed to England, MacArthur and two other
officers accompanying him.

Meanwhile some of the free settlers had begun to show indications of a
desire to help Bligh, who, to prevent accidents, was taken by the rebels
from his house and lodged with his daughter a close prisoner in the
barracks. Later on, he signed an agreement with Paterson to leave the
colony for England in a sloop of war then bound home.

Bligh and his daughter embarked on the vessel, but on the way she put into
the Derwent river, in Van Diemen's Land, where the         [Sidenote: 1809]
deposed governor landed, and at first thought he would be able to
re-establish his authority, but the spirit of rebellion had taken hold; he
was compelled to re-embark soon after, but he remained in Tasmanian waters
on board ship until Governor Macquarie arrived from England.

For the English Government, in due course, had heard of the state of
affairs, and woke up to the necessity for strong action. In December,
1809, there arrived in Sydney Harbour a 50-gun frigate and a transport,
bringing Governor Macquarie, with his regiment of Highlanders, the 73rd.
His orders were to restore Bligh for twenty-four hours and send home the
New South Wales Corps, with every officer who had been concerned in the
rebellion under arrest, and the regiment, as we said in a former chapter,
was disbanded; Macquarie was himself then to take over the government.

The absence of Bligh from the colony prevented his restoration being
literally carried out, but Macquarie issued proclamations which served the
purpose, and restored all the officials who had been put out by the
rebels. Macquarie soon made himself popular with the colonists, and the
best proof of his success is the fact that he governed the colony for
twelve years, and his administration, though an important epoch in its
history, cannot be gone into here as he was not a naval man.

Bligh, the last of the naval governors, arrived in England in October, was
made a rear-admiral, and died in 1817. Johnston was tried by court-martial
and cashiered, and returned to the colony, becoming one of its best
settlers and the founder of one of Sydney's most important suburbs.
MacArthur was ordered not to return to the colony for eight years. He
returned in 1817, bringing with him sons as vigorous as himself.
Ultimately he became a member of the Legislative Council, and his services
and those of his descendants will justly be remembered in Australia long
after the petty annoyances to which he was subjected and the improper
manner in which he resisted them have been totally and happily forgotten.

The history of Australia up to, and until the end of Bligh's appointment,
can be summed up in half a dozen sentences. Phillip, during the term of
his office, had repeatedly urged upon the home Government the necessity of
sending out free men. Convicts without such a leaven could not, in his
opinion, successfully lay the foundation of the "greatest acquisition
England has ever made." Time proved the correctness of his judgment. The
population of the colony, from something more than 1000 when he landed,
had been increased at the close of King's administration to about 7000
persons. Half a dozen settlements had been formed at places within a few
miles of Sydney; advantage had been taken of the discoveries of Bass and
Flinders, and settlements made at Hobart and at Port Dalrymple; while an
attempt (resulting in failure on this occasion and described later on) was
made to colonize Port Phillip. A good deal of country was under
cultivation, and stock had greatly increased, so that in the seventeen
years that had elapsed some progress had been made, but the state of
society at Botany Bay had grown worse rather than better. In the direction
of reformation the experiment of turning felons into farmers was not a
success. Few free emigrants had arrived in the colony, and those who came
out were by no means the best class of people. Nobody worked more than
they could help; drinking, gambling, and petty bickering occupied the
leisure of most. This was the state of affairs which Captain Bligh was
sent to reform, and we have seen how his mission succeeded.

In the case of the mutiny of the _Bounty_, it is reasonably believed that
the mutineers were, at any rate, partially incited to their crime by the
seductions of Tahiti; in the case of the revolt in New South Wales, it is
known that allegiance to constituted authority had no part in the
character of Bligh's subjects. Therefore, notwithstanding that Bligh was
the victim of two outbreaks against his rule, posterity, without the most
indisputable evidence to the contrary, would have held him acquitted of
the least responsibility for his misfortunes. In the case of the _Bounty_
mutiny the evidence of Bligh's opponents that the captain of the _Bounty_
was a tyrannical officer remains uncontradicted by any authority but that
of the _Bounty's_ captain; in the case of the New South Wales revolt we
can only judge of the probabilities, for the witnesses at the Johnston
court-martial were of necessity upon one side. But the court-martial, a
tribunal not at all likely to err upon the side of mutineers, came to the
same conclusion as we have, and, so far as we are aware, most other
writers acquainted with the subject have been driven to: that Bligh, to
say the least of it, behaved with great indiscretion.

Our references to this matter have been entirely to        [Sidenote: 1829]
the minutes of the court-martial and to writers who wrote long enough ago
to have had a personal knowledge of the subject or acquaintance with
actors in the events. The lady whose letter we have quoted in the first
pages of this chapter refers us to Lang's _History_ for a justification of
Bligh, and Dr. Lang, as is well known to students of Australian history,
wrote more strongly in that governor's favour than did any other writer.
Dr. Lang tells us that the behaviour of certain subordinates towards
MacArthur was highly improper, and that MacArthur's speech in open court
was "calculated to give great offence to a man of so exceedingly irritable
disposition as Governor Bligh." Again, Dr. Lang says that Bligh by no
means merited unqualified commendation for his government of New South
Wales, and that the truth lies between the most unqualified praise and the
most unqualified vituperation which the two sides of this quarrel have
loaded upon his memory.

Judge Therry, who came to New South Wales in 1829, in a judicial summing
up of the causes of this revolt, gives Bligh full credit for his attempt
to govern well, and condemns in strong terms the outrageous conduct of
the New South Wales Regiment; but he describes Bligh as a despotic man who
"had proved his incapacity to govern a ship's crew whom he had driven to
mutiny, yet had been made absolute ruler of a colony." Says Therry:--

    "The extravagant and illegal proceedings to which these men" (the
    Judge-Advocate and his blackguard attorney) "had recourse
    contributed perhaps more than even the shortcomings of Bligh
    himself to the catastrophe that ensued. The governor's conflicts
    with many, but especially with MacArthur, were bitter and
    incessant through his career."

Says Dr. West, writing in 1852:--

    "The governor resolved to bring to trial the six officers, who had
    repelled the Judge-Advocate, for treasonable practices; and, as a
    preliminary step, ordered that they should appear before the bench
    of magistrates, of whom Colonel Johnston, their commander, was
    one. It was now supposed that Bligh intended to constitute a novel
    court of criminal jurisdiction, and that he had resolved to carry
    to the last extremes the hostility he had declared. Colonel
    Johnston, as a measure of self-defence, was induced to march his
    regiment to Government House, and place His Excellency under
    arrest, demanding his sword and his commission as governor. This
    transaction throughout caused a very strong sensation, both in the
    colony and at home. Opinions widely differ respecting its origin
    and its necessity. That it was illegal, it may be      [Sidenote: 1811]
    presumed, no one will deny; that it was wanton is not so
    indisputable. The unfortunate termination of Bligh's first
    expedition to Tahiti, the imputations of harshness and cruelty for
    ever fastened to his name, and the disreputable agents he
    sometimes employed in his service made the position of the
    officers extremely anxious, if not insecure. Bligh had become
    popular with the expired settlers, who reckoned a long arrear of
    vengeance to their military taskmasters, and who, with the law on
    their side or encouragement from the governor, might have been
    expected to show no mercy. Had Bligh escaped to the interior, the
    personal safety of the officers might have been imperilled. The
    settlers, led on by the undoubted representative of the Crown,
    would have been able to justify any step necessary for the
    recovery of his authority, and at whatever sacrifice of life."

The court-martial on Johnston was held at Chelsea Hospital, and lasted
from May 11th till June 5th, 1811. Bligh complained that many of his
papers had been stolen, and the want of these was detrimental to his case.
Johnston, in the course of his defence, said:--

    "My justification of my conduct depends upon my having proved to
    the satisfaction of this honourable court that such was the state
    of the public mind on the 26th of January, 1808, that no
    alternative was left for me but to pursue the measures I did or to
    have witnessed an insurrection and massacre in the colony,
    attended with the certain destruction of the governor himself. In
    doing this, I have endeavoured to show not only the fact of
    Captain Bligh's general unpopularity, and the readiness of the
    people to rise against him, and the probability that they would be
    joined by the soldiery, but also the causes of that unpopularity,
    founded on the general conduct of the governor."

The court came to the following decision:--

    "The court having duly and maturely weighed and considered the
    whole of the evidence adduced on the prosecution, as well as what
    has been offered in defence, are of opinion that
    Lieutenant-Colonel Johnston is guilty of the act of mutiny as
    described in the charge, and do therefore sentence him to be

and approval of the sentence is thus recorded:--

    "His Royal Highness the Prince Regent, in the name and on the
    behalf of His Majesty, was pleased, under all the circumstances of
    the case, to acquiesce in the sentence of the court. The court, in
    passing a sentence so inadequate to the enormity of the crime of
    which the prisoner has been found guilty, have apparently been
    actuated by a consideration of the novel and extraordinary
    circumstances which, by the evidence on the face of the
    proceedings, may have appeared to them to have existed during the
    administration of Governor Bligh, both as affecting the
    tranquillity of the colony and calling for some immediate
    decision. But although the Prince Regent admits the principle
    under which the court have allowed the consideration to act in
    mitigation of the punishment which the crime of        [Sidenote: 1811]
    mutiny would otherwise have suggested, yet no circumstances
    whatever can be received by His Royal Highness in full extenuation
    of an assumption of power so subversive of every principle of good
    order and discipline as that under which Lieutenant-Colonel
    Johnston has been convicted."

If Bligh had no part in bringing these disasters upon himself, he was a
very unfortunate man (he was never given another command), and his enemies
were extremely lucky in coming off so well. Mutineers whom he accused of
taking active part against him, instead of getting hanged, rise to high
rank in the service of the King; the military leader of an insurrection,
in place of being shot on a parade-ground, is mildly dismissed the
service, and becomes a prosperous settler upon the soil on which he raised
the standard of revolution. But, whatever may have been his faults,
arising from his ungovernable temper and arbitrary disposition, the
statements of his military traducers reflecting on his personal courage
may be dismissed with the contempt they deserve.



Long after Bligh, the last naval governor, was in his grave, the pioneer
work of naval officers went on; and if not the chief aid to the settlement
of Australia, it played an important part in its development. Begun at the
foundation of the colony, when the marine explorer did his work in open
boats; carried on, as the settlement grew, in locally built fore-and-aft
vessels down to the present, when navigating officers are year in, year
out, cruising "among the South Sea Islands," or on the less known parts of
the northern and western Australian coast-line, surveying in up-to-date
triple-expansion-engined steam cruisers or in steam surveying yachts, the
work of chart-making has always been, and still is, done so thoroughly as
to command the admiration of all who understand its        [Sidenote: 1793]
its meaning, and withal so modestly that the shipmaster, whose Admiralty
charts are perhaps little less or even more valuable to him than his
Bible, scarcely ever thinks, if he knows, how they are made.

In the earliest days of the colony, Phillip and Hunter were land as well
as sea explorers; Dawes and Tench, of the Marines, and Quartermaster
Hacking, of the _Sirius_, in 1793 and 1794, made the first attempts to
cross the Blue Mountains. Shortlands (father and son), Ball, of the
_Supply_, and half a dozen other naval lieutenants, all made discoveries
of importance; Vancouver, McClure, and Bligh (the latter twelve years
before he was thought of as a governor) each did a share of early

The list might be extended indefinitely. Let us take only one or two names
and tell their stories; and these examples, with the narrative of Flinders
and Bass, must stand as illustrative of the work of all.

In land exploring the military officers were not behindhand. Beside the
work of the marines, a young Frenchman, Francis Louis Barrallier, an
ensign of the New South Wales Corps, who came out with King,
distinguished himself. King made him artillery and engineer officer, and
he did much surveying with Grant in the _Lady Nelson_. Inland he went west
until stopped by the Blue Mountains barrier; and King tells us an amusing
story of this trip. Paterson, in command of the regiment, told King that
he could not spare Barrallier for exploring purposes, so King, to get over
the difficulty, appointed him his aide-de-camp, and then sent him on an
"embassy to the King of the Mountains."

Barrallier went home in 1804, and saw a great deal of service in various
regiments, distinguishing himself in military engineering, among his works
being the erection of Nelson's column in Trafalgar Square. He died in
London in 1853.

The _Lady Nelson_ was a little brig of 60 tons burden, one of the first
built with a centre-board, or sliding keels, as the idea was then termed.
She was designed by Captain Schanck, one of the naval transport
commissioners, and when she sailed from Portsmouth to begin her survey
service in Australia, she was so deeply laden for her size that she had
less than three feet of freeboard.

Lieutenant James Grant was, through the influence of       [Sidenote: 1800]
Banks, appointed to command this little vessel. He has much to say on the
subject of sliding keels, for which see his _Narrative of a Voyage of
Discovery_. The _Lady Nelson_ was well built, and Grant showed his respect
for her designer by his naming of Cape Schanck in Victoria and Mount
Schanck in South Australia. In one of his letters to Banks, Grant says
that, with all his stores of every description on board, he could take his
vessel into seven feet of water, and could haul off a lee shore, by the
use of sliding keels, "equal to any ship in the navy." On the night of
January 23rd, 1800, it blew such a gale in the Channel that six vessels
went on shore, and several others were reported missing. This gale lasted
for nine days, and during that time the _Lady Nelson_ rode comfortably at
her anchor in the Downs.

Grant's instructions when he left England were to proceed through the
newly discovered Bass' Straits on his way, report himself at Sydney, and
then set to work and survey the coast, beginning with the southern and
south-western parts of it. The brig sailed, with a crew of seventeen all
told, in February, 1800, and arrived on December 16th of the same year,
being the first vessel to pass through Bass' Straits on the way from
England to Australia. On the voyage Grant discovered and named many points
on the Victorian coast-line; then, as soon as the vessel arrived and
received a thorough overhaul, she was sent to sea again to continue the
work in company with a small intercolonial vessel, the _Bee_.

They sailed on March 8th, 1801, and were surveying until May 2nd, when
Grant sums up the work done in these words:--

    "We have now gained a complete survey of the coast from Western
    Point to Wilson's Promontory, with the situation of the different
    islands of the same, and ascertained the latitudes of the same,
    which from our different observations we have been able to do
    sufficiently correct.... These points being ascertained so far as
    lays in our power, I judge it most prudent to make the best of our
    way to port, keeping the shore well in sight to observe every
    particular hitherto unknown."

The portions left out in this extract refer to the latitudes and
longitudes, which are so correctly given that the only ascertainable
difference between them and the figures in a recent addition of Norrie is
in the case of Wilson's Promontory, which Grant says is    [Sidenote: 1801]
in longitude between 146° 25' and 146° 14', and Norrie's table gives
us 146° 25' 37".

On the return of the little vessel, she took part in an interesting
ceremony, which the following proclamation by Governor King, dated May
29th, best describes:--

    "Thursday next being the anniversary of His Majesty's birth, will
    be observed as a holyday. The present Union will be hoisted at
    sunrise. At a quarter before nine the New South Wales Corps and
    Association to be under arms, when the Royal Proclamation for the
    Union between Great Britain and Ireland will be publicly read by
    the Provost-Marshall, and on the New Union flag being displayed at
    Dawes Point and on board His Majesty's armed vessel _Lady Nelson_
    the military will fire three rounds, which the batteries will take
    up, beginning at the main guard, Bennilong and Dawes Points, at
    the Windmill Hills, and at the barracks. When finished, His
    Majesty's armed vessel the _Lady Nelson_ will fire 21 guns, man
    ship, and cheer. At noon the salute will be repeated from the
    batteries, New South Wales Corps and Association will fire three
    rounds, and at one o'clock the _Lady Nelson_ will fire 21 guns in
    honour of His Majesty's birthday. The Governor will be ready to
    receive the compliments of the officers, civil and military, on
    those happy occasions, at half-past one o'clock."

King had a high opinion of Grant as a seaman, but he considered him an
unscientific man, not suitable for surveying, and wrote to England to that
effect. Grant himself confirms this in a letter asking to go home, as from
the "little knowledge I have of surveying, ... where I may be enabled to
be more serviceable to my country." His faith in sliding keels had been
somewhat shaken by this time, and he complained that he could not claw his
vessel off a lee shore, and so Flinders found, when Grant with the _Lady
Nelson_ kept him company along the Barrier Reef when the _Investigator_
was surveying that part of the coast. The _Nelson_ had been ordered to act
as tender to the _Investigator_, but she was so unsuited to the work that
Flinders lost patience and sent her back to Sydney, where she did a great
deal of surveying in the exploration of the Hunter River and its vicinity.
Grant went home, and cut a much better figure as a fighting officer, was
promoted commander, and died in 1838. On his way home he took a box of
King's despatches to convey to England, and when the despatch-box was
opened it was found to be empty. King, writing of this matter, said:--

    "I do not blame Lieutenant Grant so much for the       [Sidenote: 1802]
    villainous transaction respecting the loss of my despatches as I
    deprecate the infamy of those who had preconcerted the plan.
    Before the vessel he went in left the colony, it was told me that
    such an event would happen, and the master's conduct prior to his
    leaving this fully justified the report. I would not suffer the
    vessel to leave the port before a bond of £500 was given that
    neither Lieutenant Grant or the despatches should be molested.
    Under these circumstances and Lieutenant Grant's knowledge of the
    master, he ought to have been more guarded, as I gave my positive
    directions that the vessel should be seen a certain way to sea,
    and the box was not given from my possession before the vessel was
    under way. However, the plan was too well laid and bound with
    ill-got gold to fail. Let the villain enjoy the success of his
    infamy. As to any publication of Mr. Grant's, I believe nothing
    new or original can arise from his pen without the aid of
    auxiliary fiction."

Lieutenant Murray, of the _Porpoise_, relieved Grant in the _Lady Nelson_,
and Murray and his mate. Lieutenant Bowen, further explored Bass' Straits
and the Victorian coast, their chief achievement being the discovery of
Port Phillip.

The _Lady Nelson_ was off the heads of Port Phillip on January 5th, 1802,
but the weather was too bad to enter, and Bowen was sent to examine the
bay in one of the brig's boats. This he did, and the _Lady Nelson_
entered, and anchored off what is now the quarantine station on February
15th. Murray took possession of the place on March 9th, naming it Port
King, and Surveyor Grimes made a survey of it. They left on March 12th.
The Frenchman Baudin, with the _Geographe_ and _Naturaliste_, eighteen
days later ran along this coast and claimed its discovery, although the
Englishmen, Flinders in particular, had already surveyed and named nearly
all his discoveries; but Baudin was gracious enough to admit that Port
Phillip, which he had only sighted, had been first entered by the _Lady
Nelson_. Flinders sailed into the bay on April 26th, thinking that he had
made a new discovery, until, on his arrival at Port Jackson, he heard of
the _Lady Nelson's_ prior visit, and that Governor King, with modesty and
regard for his old chief, had altered Murray's name of Port King to Port

In consequence of Murray's services in the _Lady Nelson_, King appointed
him acting lieutenant, and strongly recommended the Admiralty should
confirm the appointment.

With the recommendation, Murray sent home, through the governor, the
following certificate of his services, which is interesting as showing
how such certificates were then written, and because of what came of this
particular recommendation:--

    "In pursuance of the directions of Sir Roger Curtis, Bart.,
    Vice-Admiral of the White and Commander-in-chief of His Majesty's
    ships and vessels employed and to be employed at the Cape of Good
    Hope and the seas adjacent, dated the 8th July, 1800.

    "We have examined Mr. John Murray, who appears to be more than 21
    years of age, and has been at sea more than six years in the ships
    and qualities undermentioned, viz.:--

  |Ships.           |Entry.       |Quality.   |Discharge.   |Y.|M.|W.|D.|
  |_Duke_      |9 June, 1789 |Able Seaman|2 Dec., 1789 |  |5 |2 |2 |
  |_Polyphemus_|10 Oct., 1794|Midshipman |7 May, 1797  |2 |7 |2 |  |
  |_Apollo_    |8 May, 1797  |Mate       |27 Dec., 1797|  |8 |1 |3 |
  |_Blazer_    |2 Jan., 1798 |2nd Master |             |  |  |  |  |
  |                 |             |  and Pilot|26 July, 1798|  |7 |1 |3 |
  |_Porpoise_  |7 Oct.,1798  |Mate       |9 July, 1800 |1 |9 |  |  |
  |                 |             |           |             |6 |1 |3 |1 |

    "He produceth journals kept by himself in the _Polyphemus, Apollo_,
    and _Porpoise_, and certificates from Captains Lumsdine,
    Manly, and Scott, of his diligence and sobriety. He can splice
    knots, reef and sail, work a ship in sailing, and shift his tides,
    keep a reckoning of the ship's way by plain sailing and Mercator,
    observe the sun and stars, and find the variation of the compass,
    and is qualified to do the duty of an able seaman and midshipman.

    "Given under our hands on His Majesty's ship _Adamant_, in
    Simon's Bay, Cape of Good Hope, this 9th day of July, 1800.

    "J. Motham,     \  Captains of  /  _(Adamant,_
    "Thomas Larcom, | His Majesty's |  _Lancaster,_
    "Roger Curtis,  /    ships      \  _Rattlesnake_."

The Secretary to the Admiralty wrote to Governor King on May 5th, 1802,
stating that this passing certificate of Mr. Murray's was "an imposition
attempted to be practised in his report of services, and to acquaint you
that they will not, in consequence, give him a commission, nor will they
allow him to pass for an officer at any future period." With this letter
came an enclosure showing that by Mr. Murray's passing certificate "it is
set forth that he served in the _Duke_ from the 9th June, 1789, to the 2nd
December, 1789, but we must observe that the _Duke_ was not in commission
in 1789, neither is he found on her books from the 10th of August, 1790,
to 2nd August, 1791, when she was in commission, nor is he born on the
_Duke_ while she was in ordinary, which time, even admitting he did belong
to her, would not have been allowed towards the regular servitude of six

In reply to this charge, Murray told King that he could    [Sidenote: 1803]
"explain" the circumstance; but he soon after returned to England, and
these deponents can find no further trace of him.

Soon after it was decided to colonize the new discovery, and the
_Calcutta_, man-of-war, and _Ocean_, transport, sailed from Portsmouth
with prisoners and stores on April 26th, 1803, arriving at Port Phillip on
October 10th. Collins, now a brevet-lieutenant-colonel, who was
Judge-Advocate under Phillip, was in command of the expedition, and was to
be the first governor of the settlement.

King, at Port Jackson, had meanwhile sent--in May, 1803--Lieutenant Bowen
in the _Lady Nelson,_ with a transport and a party of settlers, to form a
settlement at the head of the Derwent in Van Diemen's Land.

The expedition was made up of 307 male convicts, 17 of their wives, and 7
children; 4 officers and 47 non-commissioned officers and men of the
Marines, with 5 women and 1 child; and a party of 11 men and 1 woman, free
settlers. Besides these were about 12 civilian officials. By the close of
1803, Collins, with the concurrence of most, if not all, of his officers,
decided to abandon Port Phillip, and convey his colonists to the Derwent
settlement. His justification for taking this step was the unsuitableness
of the land and the difficulty of procuring fresh water near the heads of
Port Phillip. This shows that he was not of the same spirit as Governor
Phillip, and that he wrote history far better than he made it.

Bowen had already begun the settlement near what was named Hobart Town by
him in honour of the Secretary of State, Lord Hobart. In 1881 the "Town"
was dropped, and "Hobart" became the official name of the capital of
Tasmania. The man acting as mate of the _Lady Nelson_ was one Jorgenson,
the "King of Iceland," whose remarkable story was written by Mr. Hogan,
and published by Ward and Downey in 1891, and whose career was a most
extraordinary series of adventures. The _Lady Nelson_ pursued her careful
and useful voyages until 1827, when she was seized by Maoris on the coast
of New Zealand and destroyed.

In 1817 there came out young Phillip Parker King, son of Governor King,
who made four voyages round the Australian coast, completing a minute
survey in 1822, when he returned to England and            [Sidenote: 1822]
published an interesting account of his work. Sir Gordon Bremer in the
_Tamar_, Sterling in the _Success_, Fitzroy in the _Beagle_, Hodson in the
_Rattlesnake_, Captain (afterwards Sir George) Grey on the West Australian
coast, Blackwood in the _Fly_, Stokes and Wickham, and scores of other
naval officers ought to be mentioned, and no attempt can be made in a work
like this to do justice to the merchantmen who, in whalers and sealers or
East Indiamen, in a quiet, modest, business-like way of doing the thing,
sailed about the coast making discoveries, and often, through the
desertion of their seamen, leading to the foundation of settlements.

Gregory Blaxland, William Lawson, and William Charles Wentworth, in
Governor Macquarie's time, were the first men to make an appreciable
advance to the west, inland from the sea. Lawson was a lieutenant in the
New South Wales Corps, in the Veteran Company of which notorious regiment
he remained attached to the 73rd when the "Botany Bay Rangers" went home.
Blaxland was an early settler in the colony, and Wentworth was the son of
a wealthy Norfolk Island official, who had sent his boy home to be
educated, and when these three men went exploring, young Wentworth had
just returned to Australia. In 1813, after many hard trials, by keeping to
the crown of the range and avoiding the impenetrable gorges which their
predecessors had thought would lead to a pass through the barrier, they
managed to gain the summit of the main range, and then returned to Sydney.
The work had taken a month to perform, and Macquarie promptly sent out a
fully equipped party to follow up the discovery. So thoroughly did the
governor back up the work of the explorers that by January, 1815, the
convict-made road had been completed to Bathurst, and the Blue Mountain
ranges were no longer a barrier to the good country of the west.

The Humes, Evans, Oxley, and the rest of the land explorers followed as
the years went on, and very soon there was not a mile of undiscovered land
in the mother-colony. Attempts to penetrate the interior of the great
continent followed, and that work and the opening of the far north, with
its too often accompaniments of disaster and death, went on until quite
recent times. Occasionally even now we hear much talk of expeditions into
the interior, but newspaper-readers who read of such exploring parties can
generally take it for granted that stories of hazard and hardship
nowadays lose nothing in the telling, especially where mining interests
and financial speculation are concerned.

By way of ending to this story of the naval pioneers of Australia, it will
perhaps be not amiss to show what the navy was in Australia at the
beginning of the century and what it is now at its close. A return issued
by Governor King on the 4th of August, 1804, showed that the _Buffalo_,
ship of war, with a crew of 84 men, the _Lady Nelson_, a 60-ton brig, with
15 men, were the only men-of-war that could be so described on the
station. The _Investigator_, Flinders' ship, was then being patched up to
go home, and she is stated to have 26 men rated on her books. Belonging to
the Colonial Government were the _Francis_, a 40-ton schooner, the
_Cumberland_, 20-ton schooner, the _Integrity_, a cutter of 59 tons, the
_Resource_, a schooner of 26 tons, built from the wrecks of the _Porpoise_
and _Cato_, and some punts and open boats. The crews of all these vessels
amounted to 145 men.

A return dated six months later shows that there were 23 merchant vessels
owned, or constantly employed, in the colony, of a total tonnage of 660
tons, carrying crews numbering altogether 117. The vessels varied in size
from the _King George_, of 185 tons and 25 men, to the _Margaret_, of 7
tons and 2 men.

In the year 1898 the royal naval forces in Australian waters make a
squadron, under the command of a rear-admiral, consisting of 17 ships. Of
these 15 (including 3 surveying vessels at present attached to the
Australian station) are in commission, and 2 in reserve. The total tonnage
of the vessels in commission and in reserve amounts to 31,795 tons, armed
with the most modern weapons, and carrying crews numbering in the
aggregate about 3000, while the naval establishment at Garden Island (so
called because about a hundred and twenty years ago it was used as a
vegetable garden for the crew of the _Sirius_) is now one of the most
important British naval stations.

Seven of these war vessels belong to a special squadron, the maintenance
of which is partially paid for by the colonial governments; and, by
agreement with the Imperial Government, the ships are to be employed in
Australasian waters solely for the defence of Australia and New Zealand.
Besides this force, most of the colonial governments maintain a naval
reserve of their own, highly efficient, perhaps, as a land force, but,
owing to the lack of vessels and of money, scarcely to be considered
seriously of value as a naval defence force.

The merchant shipping trade of Australia, measured by the entering and
clearing returns from all Australian ports, now reaches about 18,000,000
tons annually, of which about one-third is entered or cleared from the
ports of the mother-colony. The returns do not separate purely local
tonnage from the other shipping of the British empire, but out of the
above 18,000,000 tons some 16,000,000 tons are classed as British, and
Australia as a whole contributes no mean proportion of that amount.

Here ends this account of the naval pioneers of Australia. We have already
said that this work is biographical rather than historical. All that we
have attempted is not to sketch the progress of the colony--as a colony,
for the first twenty years of its existence, no element of progress was in
it--but to show how certain naval officers, in spite of the difficulties
of the penal settlement days, in spite very often of their own unfitness
for this to them strange service, did their work well, not perhaps always
governing wisely, but holding to ground won in such circumstances and by
such poor means as men with more brains and less "grit" would have
abandoned as untenable.

Arthur Phillip landed in a desert, obtained a footing on the land, and
when he left it, left behind him a habitable country; Hunter and King
followed him and held the country, though nearly every man's hand was
against them, and the industrious and the virtuous among their people
could be numbered by the fingers of the hand. Yet these men and their
officers dotted the coast-line with their discoveries, and by what they
wrought in the direction of sea exploration more than made up for what
they lacked in the art of civil governing. Bligh honestly endeavoured in a
blundering way to accomplish that which only the sharp lesson of his
mistake made possible; Macquarie, backed by a regiment, began his
administration with concessions, and continued for many years to govern
the colony, chiefly for the benefit of the emancipists instead of for its
officials. Whatever evils may have come of his methods, it has been said
of him that "he found a garrison and a gaol, and left the broad and deep
foundations of an empire." Such foundation was really laid by his
successors, who encouraged the emigration of free men who presently
demanded that Australia should no longer be used as a place of
punishment, and its lands as a reward for felons; that it must be a
British colony in the fullest and freest sense. It is to these men,
marching forward upon ways cut for them by the naval pioneers, we owe the
fulfilment of Phillip's prediction that "this would be the most valuable
acquisition England ever made."


  Abbott, Captain, 144, 147, 257.
  Abrolhos, 11, 15, 17, 38.
  _Adamant_, H.M.S., 288.
  Adams, John, 234, 240.
  Addison's _Arithmetical Navigation_, 35.
  Admiralty Islands, 51.
  Adventure Bay, 223.
  _Alexander_, 247.
  All Saints, Bay of, 34.
  _Amazon_, 142.
  Anson, 51.
  Apia Harbour, 32.
  _Apollo_, 287.
  Arauco, 241.
  _Ariadne_, 76, 137.
  Armstrong Channel, 170.
  Arnhem's Land, 184;
    discovery of, 9, 16.
  _Arnhem_, 9.
  Ascension, 39.
  _Assistance_, 229.
  _Astrolabe_, 138.
  Atkin, Mr., 199, 203, 212.
  Atkins, Judge-Advocate, 261.
  Australia, 59;
    belief in the existence, 2;
    the Spanish voyages, 4;
    the Dutch, 6;
    discovery of the south coast, in 1627, 9;
    the first English naval expedition, 23;
    first use of the name, 184;
    condition of the navy in 1804, 293;
      in 1898, 294;
    merchant shipping trade, 295.

  Baffin's Bay, 65.
  Bahio de todos los Santos, or the Bay of All Saints, 34.
  Ball, Lieutenant, 77, 140, 279.
  Banjoewangi, 39.
  Banks, Sir Joseph, 53, 67, 73, 149, 154, 158,
    168, 182, 208, 222, 223, 249, 251, 252;
    on establishing a penal colony at Botany Bay, 74;
    letters from Captain Flinders, 204-206, 212, 213;
      to Governor King, 209;
      to Captain Flinders, 210.
  Barham, Lord, 211.
  Barrallier, Francis Louis, 279, 280.
  Barrier Reef, 60, 63, 184, 227, 284.
  Barrington, George, 164.
  Barrow, Sir John, his _Mutiny of the "Bounty,"_
    218, 231, 232, 238, 245.
  Barton, Mr. G.B., his _History of Australia_, 2;
    _History of New South Wales from the Records_, 87.
  _Barwell_, 106.
  Bashee Islands, 19.
  _Basilisk_, 75.
  Bass, George, 95, 105, 279;
    his work of surveying, 167;
    early career, 169;
    appointed surgeon to the _Reliance_, 169;
    discovers the coalfields of New South Wales, 172;
    explorations, 172-175, 177;
    sails in the _Venus_, 179;
    last news, 179;
    appearance, 181;
    mysterious fate, 181;
    various reports, 181.
  Bass' Straits, 170, 178, 281, 285.
  Batavia, 11, 58, 64, 100, 141.
  _Batavia_, Wreck of the, 10.
  Bath, 89.
  Bathampton Church, 89.
  Bathurst, 292.
  Baudin, M., 157, 286;
    his expedition to New South Wales, 158;
    letter to Captain King, 160.
  Baye du Cap, 198, 201.
  _Beagle_, 291.
  _Bee_, 282.
  Belcher, Lady, _Mutineers of the Bounty_, 218, 238.
  _Bellerophon_, 169.
  _Bellona_, 66.
  Benevideis, General, 241.
  Bennilong Point, 283.
  Bergeret, Captain, 199, 212.
  Bermudas, 134.
  _Berwick_, 77.
  Besant, Sir Walter, 45.
  Bishop, Charles, 179.
  Blackwood, 291.
  Blaxland, George, 291.
  _Blenheim_, 233.
  Bligh, Captain, 100, 163, 169, 211, 277, 279;
    Governor of New South Wales, 218, 247, 252;
    his first visit to the South Seas, 221;
    in command of the _Bounty_, 222;
    outbreak of the mutiny, 224;
    cast adrift, 225;
    his courage and endurance, 226, 246;
    reaches Timor, 228;
      England, 229;
    in command of the _Providence_, 229;
    his version of the mutiny, 242;
      responsibility for it, 245;
      defence of his conduct, 248-250;
    instructions, 252;
    administration, 254, 296;
    dispute with MacArthur, 256;
    prohibits the distillation of spirits, 257;
    proceedings against MacArthur, 259;
    surrenders to Major Johnston, 267;
    Rear-Admiral, 270.
  Bligh's Passage, 227.
  Blue Mountains, 82, 157, 279, 292.
  _Bonaparte_, 133, _note_.
  Bootie, 65.
  Botany Bay, 57, 58, 94;
    proposal to establish a penal colony at, 74;
    arrival of the fleet, 78;
    its unsuitability, 81;
    state of society, 271.
  Bougainville, 51.
  _Bounty, Mutiny of the_, 218;
    various books on, 218, 219;
    sails for Tahiti, 222;
    fittings, 222;
    crew, 223;
    outbreak of the mutiny, 224;
    trial of the mutineers, 232;
    sole survivor, 233;
    beached and burnt, 234.
  _Boussole_, 138.
  Bowen, Lieutenant, 285;
    forms a settlement at Derwent, 289.
  Bowles, Captain, 240.
  Bowrey, Captain, 37.
  Brazils, Viceroy of the, treatment of Captain Cook, 55.
  Bremen, Jan de, 15.
  Bremer, Sir Gordon, 291.
  Breton, Cape, 125.
  _Bridgewater_, 186, 188;
    escapes being wrecked, 189;
    deserts the ships, 190.
  _Britannia_, 144.
  _Briton_, 233.
  Britton, Mr., 124.
  Broken Bay, 94, 174.
  Broome, 39.
  Brown, 183, 234.
  Buccaneer Archipelago, 20.
  Buchan, 53.
  _Buffalo_, 105, 293.
  Bunker, Mr., 242.
  Bunker's Hill, Battle of, 119, 124.
  Burney, Charles, 92.
  Burney, extract from his _Voyages_, 5.
  Byron, Mr., 51, 66, 137;
    discovers the Falkland Islands, 50.
  Byron, his poem of "The Island," 219.

  Caen, General de, 199, 201;
    his treatment of Captain Flinders, 198, 202;
    his report, 207.
  Calcutta, 242.
  _Calcutta_, 289.
  Callao, 4, 241, 242.
  _Calliope_, 32.
  Camden, Lord, 252.
  Campbell, Captain, 181.
  Campbell, Mr., 201.
  Campeachy, Bay of, 19.
  Camperdown, Battle of, 248.
  _Canada_, 247.
  _Canterbury_, 40.
  Carnarvon, 39.
  Carpentaria, Gulf of, 16, 184.
  Carteret, Captain, 100;
    in command of the _Swallow_, 50;
    his discoveries, 51.
  Cascade Bay, 123.
  Castle Hill, 152.
  Castlereagh, Lord, 250.
  _Cato_, 186, 293;
    wreck of the, 188-192.
  Cavendish, 24.
  Celebes, 20.
  Chappell, Captain, 217.
  Charles II., 37.
  Charnock, his _Marine Architecture_, 23;
    illustration of a sixth-rate vessel, 26;
    a man-of-war, 27;
    his scale of provisions, 30;
    dress of sailors, 31.
  Chart-making, the work of, 278.
  Chastleton, 247.
  Chili, 180.
  Christian, Fletcher, 224, 225, 234, 242, 244, 250;
    mystery of his death, 235;
    accounts of his revolt, 236, 238.
  _Cinque Ports_, 42.
  _Circassian_, 242.
  Clarke, 92.
  Clarke Island, 170.
  Clerke, Charles, 65;
    his career, 66;
    captain of the _Discovery_, 66;
    extracts from his letters, 67-71.
  Coalcliff, 172.
  Cochrane, Lord, 241.
  Coker, East, 19.
  Cole, Mr., 244.
  Collins, Arthur, 119.
  Collins, General Arthur Tooker, 119.
  Collins, Lieut.-Colonel, on the result of
    the first voyage to Botany Bay, 78;
    the second voyage, 79;
    on the settlers of New South Wales, 83;
    his history of it, 118;
    career, 119;
    appointed Judge-Advocate, 119;
    Governor of Van Diemen's Land, 120;
    appearance, 120;
    character, 121;
    in command of the expedition to colonize Port Phillip, 289.
  Colnett, Captain, 164.
  Convicts, mutiny, 152.
  Cook, Captain James, 221, 249;
    his early years, 45;
    appointed master of the _Mercury_, 45;
    marine surveyor of Newfoundland, 46;
    in command of the expedition to the Pacific, 46;
    object of his voyage, 52;
    commander of the _Endeavour_, 52, 53;
    his ship's company, 53;
    food supply, 54;
    order on the treatment of scurvy, 54;
    treatment by the Viceroy of the Brazils, 55;
    at Point Hicks, 57;
    Botany Bay, 57;
    discovers and surveys the east coast, 58;
    sails through Torres Strait, 58;
    takes possession of the continent, 58;
    his difficulties, 60;
    extracts from his entries, 60-63;
    on the number of deaths at Batavia, 64;
    logs of his officers, 65;
    accidental discovery of Australia, 71;
    discovers Norfolk Island, 139;
    report, 139.
  Coombes, Miss, 165.
  Cooper-King, Colonel C, on the punishment of marines, 122.
  Copenhagen, 142;
    battle of, 249.
  Cornelis, Jerome, the mutiny of, 11-15.
  Coupang, 198, 231.
  _Courageux_, 66, 119.
  _Crescent_, 241.
  Crossley, 183.
  _Cumberland_, 159, 194, 196, 201, 293.
  Cunningham, James, 140.
  Curtis, Sir Roger, 287, 288.
  _Cygnet_, 19.
  Cygnet Bay, 20.

  _Daedalus_, 144.
  _Daily Graphic_, 247;
    extract from, 248-250.
  Dalrymple, 6, 52;
    his jealousy of Captain Cook, 52, 56;
    _Historical Collection of Voyages_, 56.
  Dalrymple Port, 271.
  Dampier, Captain, 8, 17, 51;
    his voyages, 19;
    slave "Joey," 20;
    observations on the natives, 21;
    in command of the _Roebuck_, 23;
    account of his travels, 28;
    dedication to the Hon. C. Mountague, 28;
    his pay, 29;
    ill-disciplined crew, 34;
    scientific results of the voyage, 35;
    on Tasman's draught of the coast, 36;
    in Sharks' Bay, 38;
    at New Guinea, 39;
    foundering of his ship, 39;
    personality, 40;
    summary of his work, 41;
    dedication to the Earl of Pembroke, 42;
    in command of a privateering expedition, 42;
    sails as pilot, 43;
    obscure death, 43;
    his _Voyage_, 56.
  Dampier's Monument, 21.
  Davies, Lieutenant, 152.
  Davies, John, 24;
    his work on navigation, 35.
  Dawes, 118, 279;
    Battery, 118;
    Point, 283.
  De Quiros discovers various islands, 4.
  Denmark, Matilda, Queen of, 119.
  Deptford, 53.
  Derwent, settlement at, 289;
    River, 268.
  Dewar, Mr. W., 70.
  _Director_, 248.
  Dirk Hartog's Road, 38.
  _Discovery_, 66, 68.
  Dixon, Mr., 153.
  Doggerbank, 249.
  _Dolphin_, 50, 51, 66, 137.
  Donington, 168.
  Duckett, 59.
  _Duff_, 133.
  _Duke_, 288.
  Duncan, Admiral, 248.
  _Duncan_, 214.
  Dunton, John, _A New Discovery of Terra Incognita Australis, or the
      Southern World, by James Sadeur, a Frenchman_, 37.
  Dusky Bay, 179.
  Dutch, their voyages to Australia, 6;
    East India Company, establishment of the, 7.
  Duyphen Point, 8.
  _Duyphen_, its voyages to New Guinea, 7.

  _Eagle_, 45, 93.
  East Indies, 71.
  Edwards, Captain, 229, 245;
    his treatment of the mutineers of the _Bounty_, 230-232.
  Ellis, Mr. W., 70.
  Elphinstone, 229.
  Encounter Bay, 184.
  _Endeavour_, 48, 52, 179;
    sketch of the vessel, 53;
    its condition, 60;
    goes ashore on the Barrier Reef, 60.
  Endeavour River, 63.
  _Endragt_, 8.
  England, state of the navy, 22.
  _Esmeralda_, 241.
  Etheridge, Mr., 166.
  _Europe_, 76, 137.
  Evans, 292.
  Evelyn, John, extract from, on Captain Dampier, 18.
  Everard, Cape, 57.
  Everett, Captain Michael, 75.
  Exmouth Gulf, 16.

  Falconer, 92.
  Falkland Islands, discovery of, 50.
  Fish, Rev. Lancelot J., 90.
  Fitzmaurice, Lieutenant, 181.
  Fitzroy, 291.
  Flattery, Cape, 63.
  Flinders, Matthew, 59, 105, 279, 284, 286;
    his work of surveying, 167;
    early career, 168;
    joins the _Reliance_, 169;
    discoveries, 170, 176, 177, 178, 184;
    in command of the _Norfolk_, 177;
    return to England, 178, 182;
    on the circumnavigation of Van Diemen's Land, 182;
    in command of the _Investigator_, 182;
    charts of the coast, 184;
    on board the _Porpoise_, 186;
    wrecked, 187-192;
    reaches Sydney, 192;
    at Wreck Reef, 196;
    his description of the _Cumberland_, 197;
    letter to Governor King on being taken prisoner, 198-201;
    tyranny of General de Caen, 202;
    imprisonment, 203;
    letters to Sir J. Banks, 204-206, 212, 213;
      to General de Caen, 208, 209;
    obtains his freedom, 215;
    arrives in England, 216;
    _Account of a Voyage to Terra Australia_, 216;
    his daughter, 217.
  Flinders, Samuel, 169, 183.
  Flinders, Mrs., 210.
  _Fly_, 291.
  Folger, Matthew, 233.
  Forwood, 65.
  Foveaux, Lieutenant-Colonel, 268.
  Fowler, Lieutenant, 186, 189.
  _Francis_, 176, 194, 196, 197, 293.
  Franklin, John, 183.
  Frazer, Harriet, 119.
  Freycinet, De, 8.
  Frobisher, extract from, on Australia, 3.
  Fryer, John, 223, 224, 225, 243.
  Funnel, in command of the _Cinque Ports_, 43.
  Furneaux, Captain, 173, 174.
  Furneaux group, 177.

  _Gambia_, 241.
  Garden Island, 294.
  Gascoyne division, 38.
  George, St., 42.
  George, III., anniversary of his birthday, 283.
  _Geographe_, 160, 200, 286.
  Gerald, 165.
  Gilbert, Captain, his duel with Lieutenant MacArthur, 125.
  _Glatton_, H.M.S., 163, 244, _note_, 249.
  Good Hope, Cape of, 68, 71, 95, 102, 105, 216.
  _Gorgon_, 143.
  _Grampus_, 92.
  Grant, Lieutenant James, 280;
    in command of the _Lady Nelson_, 281;
    his _Narrative of a Voyage of Discovery_, 281;
    instructions, 281;
    survey of the coast, 282.
  Green, 53, 65.
  Green Cape, 177.
  Gregory, Rev. William, 133.
  Grey, Sir George, 291.
  Grimes, Surveyor, 286.
  Grose, Francis, 124.
  Grose, Major, 102;
    his method of governing New South Wales, 103;
    offers to form a corps, 123;
    manner of raising, 126;
    his career, 124;
    grants of land to officers, 130;
    in temporary command, 143;
    cause of offence against Governor King, 145.
  _Guardian_, wreck of the, 142.
  _Gulde Zeepard_, 10.
  Guns, table of, 25.
  Gunter, 35.

  Hacking, Quartermaster, 279.
  Hackney Churchyard, 113.
  Hadley, his quadrant, 35;
    sextant, 50.
  Hallett, 243.
  Halley, 52.
  Hamelin, Captain, of the _Naturaliste_, 8.
  Hamilton, Mr., 176.
  _Harriet_, 215.
  _Harrington_, 181.
  Harrison, his chronometer, 50.
  Hartog, Dirk, in command of the _Endragt_, 8.
  Hawke, Lord, 52.
  Hawkesbury, River, 94, 254.
  Hawkesworth, Dr., 45, 58, 60, 81.
  Hayes, Sir Henry Browne, 164.
  Helena, St., 64, 101.
  Henriques, Don, 236.
  Henry VIII., 22.
  Herbert, Captain, 75.
  Heywood, 219, 229, 238, 242, 250;
    imprisoned on the _Pandora_, 230;
    trial, 232;
    pardoned, 233.
  Hicks, Lieutenant, 64, 65.
  Hicks, Point, 57.
  Hobart, Lord, 160, 290;
    recalls Captain King, 162.
  Hobart, 271, 290.
  Hodmadods, (Hottentots) of Monomatapa, 21.
  Hodson, 291.
  Hogan, Mr., 290.
  Hollandia Nova, 16.
  Holt, memoirs of, 118, 156.
  _Hope, The_ 192.
  Horn, Cape, 71, 101.
  Houtman's Abrolhos, 10.
  Howe, Cape, 171.
  Howe, Lord, 76, 93, 94, 102, 119, 169, 249.
  Humes, 292.
  Hunter, John, 279, 296;
    early years, 91;
    at school, 92;
    various appointments, 93;
    in command of the _Sirius_, 93;
    his charts and land maps, 94;
    sent to obtain supplies, 95;
    character, 95;
    shipwrecked, 96-98;
    account of his voyage home, 99-101;
    appointed governor of New South Wales, 102;
    interest in exploration, 105;
    good-nature, 107;
    quarrel with Captain MacArthur, 108;
    charges against him, 109;
    letters from the Duke of Portland, 109, 110;
    recalled, 111, 149;
    indignation, 111;
    in command of the _Venerable_, 113;
    death, 113;
    on the explorations of Bass and Flinders, 172-176.
  Hunter, William, 92.
  Hunter River, 284.

  _Indefatigable_, 240.
  _Integrity_, 293.
  _Investigator_, 182, 284, 293;
    its condition, 185.
  Ipswich, 118.
  Isle of France, 199, 209.

  Jackson, Sir George, 59.
  James II., 22.
  James' _Naval History_, 23, 24.
  Jamison, Thomas, 140.
  Jarvis' Bay, 173.
  "Jeoey, Painted Prince," 20.
  Johnson, 106.
  Johnston, Major, 127, 256, 264;
    his report of the convict mutiny, 152-154;
    demands release of MacArthur, 265;
    assumes the government, 267;
    court-martial on, 270, 275;
    cashiered, 270, 276;
    defence, 275.
  Jorgenson, the "King of Iceland," 290.
  Juan Fernandez, 43, 236.

  Kemp, Captain, 262.
  Kent, Captain, 105, 185.
  Keppel, Admiral, 124.
  Kew, 186.
  Kimberley, West, 20.
  King, Philip Gidley, 111, 136, 280, 286;
    governor of Norfolk Island, 122, 140;
    extract from his journal on establishing martial law, 123;
    statement of his services, 137;
    administration, 141;
    voyage to England, 141;
    recognition of his services, 143;
    marriage, 143, 165;
    return to Norfolk Island, 143;
    accompanies the Maoris to New Zealand, 144;
    gives offence to Major Grose, 145;
    suppression of a mutiny, 146-148;
    governor of New South Wales, 149;
    administration, 149, 296;
    on the corps, 150;
    his indulgences to political prisoners, 151;
    revolt of convicts, 152-154;
    on M. Baudin's visit, 158-160;
    the treatment of the officers, 161;
    lampoon, 162;
    recalled, 163;
    defence of his conduct, 163;
    famous prisoners, 164;
    his son, 165;
    on the work of Flinders, 185;
      assistance to him, 194;
    proclamation, 283;
    opinion of Grant, 283;
    on his stolen despatches, 285;
    sends an expedition to colonize Derwent, 289;
    his report on the navy, 293.
  King, Phillip Parker, 165;
    his voyages round the Australian coast, 290.
  King, Mr., 71.
  _King George_, 294.
  King's Island, 159.
  King's Sound, 21.
  _Kite_, 137.
  Klencke, of Amsterdam, 37.
  Knowles, Sir Charles, 93.

  Labillardiere, his _Voyage in Search of La Pérouse_, 243.
  Ladrones, 19.
  _Lady Nelson_, 183, 184, 280, 281, 283, 284, 285, 289, 293;
    destroyed by Maoris, 290.
  _Lady Shore_, mutiny on board, 132.
  _Lancaster_, H.M.S., 288.
  Lang, Dr., his _History of New South Wales_, 107, 154, 250, 254, 273.
  Larcom, Thomas, 288.
  Lawrence, St., 46.
  Lawson, William, 291.
  Laycock, Quartermaster, 152, 153.
  Ledward, 224.
  Leeuwin, Cape, 10, 184.
  Leith, 91.
  Lima, 181.
  Linois, Admiral, 200.
  _Lion_, 65.
  Lipari Islands, 241.
  _Liverpool_, 137.
  Longnose Bay, 173.
  Lord Howe Island, 140.
  Louisiade Archipelago, 4.
  Lumsdine, Captain, 287.

  MacArthur, Captain John, 107, 150;
    character, 108;
    quarrel with Captain Hunter, 108;
    his duels with Captain Gilbert, 125;
      with Lieut.-Colonel Paterson, 151;
    successful wool-growing, 157;
    dispute with Captain Bligh, 256;
    seizure of his stills, 258;
    proceedings against him, 259;
    indictment, 261;
    objects to be tried by Judge-Advocate Atkins, 262;
    lodged in gaol, 263;
    released, 265;
    acquitted, 267;
    his return in 1817, 270.
  Macassar, Strait of, 100.
  Macquarie, Governor, his administration of New South Wales, 269, 296.
  Magellan Straits, 51.
  Major, R.H., _Early Voyages to Australia_, 2, 6, 11-15, 37.
  Manly, Captain, 287.
  _Margaret_, 294.
  Margarot, 165.
  Marines, expedition to New South Wales, 114;
    petition for liquor, 115;
    officers, 116, 118;
    severity of the punishments, 122;
    granted discharges, 127;
    privileges of re-enlistment, 127.
  _Marquis de Seignelay_, 93.
  Marsden, 106.
  Marshall, Captain, 80.
  Marshall, Mr., 119.
  Martin, 234.
  Matavai Bay, 223, 229.
  Matra, Jean Maria, 74.
  Mauritius, 142, 198.
  Maxwell, Lieutenant George William, 100.
  McBride, Admiral, 119.
  McBride, Dr., his method of treating scurvy, 54.
  McClure, 279.
  McCoy, 234, 235.
  McFarland, Judge, his book on _The Mutiny of the "Bounty,"_ 219.
  Mercator, Gerald, his chart, 35.
  _Mercury_, 46.
  Messina, 241.
  Middleton, Sir Charles, 211.
  Mills, 234.
  Mindanao, 20, 101.
  Missionaries, on the condition of New South Wales, 105.
  Molineux, Robert, 65.
  Monistrol, Colonel, 203, 207.
  Monson, Sir William, _Naval Tracts_, 25.
  Monte Video, 133.
  Moore, Thomas, letter from, 182.
  Morley, Roger, 140.
  Morrison, 232, 233.
  Mosse Island, 134.
  Motham, J., 288.
  Motherbank, 76.
  Moulter, James, 231.
  Mountague, Hon. Charles, 28.
  Muir, 165.
  Mulgrave, Lord, 119.
  Murray, Lieutenant, 285, 286;
    certificate of his services, 287.
  Murray, Rear-Admiral, 240.
  Murray, Rev. T.B., extract from, on Mr. Nobbs, 240-242.
  Muspratt, 233.

  Naples, 241.
  _Naturaliste_, 8, 160, 200, 286.
  _Nautical Almanac_, first number of the, 50.
  _Nautilus_, 177.
  _Naval Chronicle_, 92, 94.
  _Navigation aux Terres Australes, Histoire des_, 57.
  Navy, condition of the, in 1688, 22;
    in 1769, 48; in 1804, 293; in 1898, 294;
    officers, 29;
    scale of provisions, 30;
    dress of sailors, 31;
    life on board ship, 32;
    improvement in the class of seamen, 48;
    food and accommodation, 49;
    changes in the uniform of officers, 55.
  Nelson, Lord, 46, 142, 244, 249.
  Nelson, the botanist, 224, 228.
  Nepean, Captain, 145.
  Nepean, Evan, 125.
  Nepean, Nicholas, 124.
  Nepean River, 125, 254.
  _Neptune_, 80, 125.
  New Britain, 39, 100.
  New Caledonia, 100.
  New Guinea, 4, 7, 9, 39, 51, 58, 63.
  New Hebrides, or Tierra Australis del Espiritu Santo, 4.
  New Holland, 16, 20, 50, 59, 71, 95.
  New Ireland, 51, 100.
  New South Wales, 58;
    scheme for colonizing, 74;
    opinions on the country, 82;
    agricultural returns, 83;
    convict population, 84;
    administration of Captain Phillip, 85;
    Captain Hunter, 102;
    the military, 102;
    state of disorder, 103;
    the corps, 103;
    bushrangers, 105;
    the marines, 114;
    officers, 116, 118;
    formation of the corps, 123;
    manner of raising, 126;
    maximum strength, 127;
    marines granted discharges, 127;
    privileges of re-enlistment, 127;
    emigrants, 128;
    emancipated convicts, 128;
    the first cargo of rum, 131;
    character of the corps, 131;
    breaches of discipline, 132;
    number of companies, 134;
    the veteran, 134;
    abolished, 135, 269;
    revolt of convicts, 152;
    the first newspaper, 157;
    administration of Capt. King, 136;
    discovery of coalfields, 172;
    Captain Bligh, 218;
    under martial law, 267;
    population, 271;
    condition of the colony, 271;
    Governor Macquarie, 269.
  _New South Wales Records_, 67.
  New Zealand, 7, 57, 71, 143.
  Newcastle, 105;
    town of, founded, 157.
  Newfoundland, 46.
  Nicobar Islands, 20.
  Nobbs, Rev. George H., his history, 240-242.
  _Norfolk_, 177, 178, 183.
  Norfolk Island, 96, 99, 128, 235;
    establishment of martial law, 122;
    discovery of, 139;
    colonization, 140;
    population, 140;
    mutiny, 146-148.
  Norton, Sir Fletcher, 67.
  Nutting, Mary, letter from, on Captain Bligh, 248-250.
  Nuyts Archipelago, 10.
  Nuyts, Peter, 10.

  Oakes, Francis, 260.
  _Ocean_, 289.
  _Oceani_, 242.
  Otaheite, 237.
  Oxford, Earl of, 29.
  Oxley, 292.

  Palliser, Sir Hugh, 46.
  Palmer, 165.
  Palmerston, Lord, 86.
  _Pandora_ frigate, 229;
    wrecked, 231.
  Pandora's Reef, 231.
  _Paramour_, 52.
  Paris, Peace of, 93.
  Parker, Admiral, 249.
  Parramatta, 83, 128, 152.
  Pascoe, Lieutenant, 47.
  Pasley, 169.
  Paterson, Lieut.-Colonel, 103, 104, 125, 268, 280;
   his duel with Captain MacArthur, 151.
  Peckover, William, 224.
  Pellew, Sir Edward, 213, 214.
  Pelsart, Francis, in command of the _Batavia_, 10.
  Pembroke, Earl of, 42.
  Pepy's Diary, 18, 22, 31, 32.
  Pérouse, La, 8, 66, 139, 243.
  Peru, 181.
  _Pesa_, 9.
  Petit, Mr., 161.
  Petril, Mrs. Annie, 217.
  Philip III. of Spain, 6.
  Philippines, The, 20.
  Phillip, Captain Arthur, 139, 166, 270, 279;
    his early career, 75;
    in command of the first fleet to New South Wales, 76;
    number of vessels, 77;
    his good management, 79;
    Governor-in-Chief and Captain-General, 80;
    on the unsuitability of Botany Bay, 80;
    explores the coast, 81;
    founds Sydney, 81;
    administration, 84, 296;
    qualifications, 87;
    resignation, 89;
    promotions and death, 89.
  Pickersgill, 65;
    Commander of the _Lion_, 65.
  Pindar, Peter, 74.
  Pitcairn Island, 51, 233;
    character of its population, 234.
  Pitcairne, Major, 119.
  Pitt, William, 164.
  Plymouth, 125, 221.
  _Polyphemus_, 287.
  _Porpoise_, 159, 186, 197, 285, 287, 293;
    wreck of the, 187-192.
  Port Bowen, 187.
  Port King, 286.
  Port Jackson, 59, 81, 94, 142.
  Port Louis, 142, 198, 201.
  Port Phillip, 157, 160, 184;
    discovery of, 285;
    attempt to colonize, 271, 289.
  Port Royal, 52.
  Port Stephens, 59.
  Portland, Duke of, 107, 148, 150, 172;
    extract of his letters to Captain Hunter, 109-111.
  _Portland_, 64.
  Possession Island, 58.
  Preservation Island, 170, 177.
  _Princess_, 137.
  _Providence_, 100, 169, 229, 249.
  Providential Channel, 63.
  _Prudent_, 137.
  Purchas, extract from, on Australia, 3.
  Putland, Mrs., 266.

  Quebec, 93;
    siege of, 46.
  _Queen Charlotte_, 102.
  Quintall, 234, 235.
  _Rattlesnake_, H.M.S., 288, 291.
  _Reliance_, 168, 169, 178.
  _Renown_, 137.
  _Resolution_, 65, 66, 221, 230, 249.
  _Resource_, 197, 293.
  Restoration Island, 227.
  Rio de Janeiro, 132.
  Riou, Captain, 142.
  Robinson, Commander C.N., _The British Fleet_, 28, 31.
  Rochefort, 93.
  Rochester, 119.
  Rodney, Sir George, 93.
  Rodriguez, Island of, 233
  _Roebuck_, H.M.S., 23, 240;
    a sixth-rate vessel, 24;
    guns, 26;
    officers, 29;
    scale of provisions, 30;
    dress of the sailors, 31;
    founders, 39.
  Roebuck Bay, 39.
  Roeburne, 39.
  Rogers, Woodes, 43.
  _Rolla_, 194, 196, 197.
  Rosemary Isles, 39, 213.
  Ross, Major, 96;
    on the attempt to colonize New South Wales, 82;
    commandant and lieutenant-governor, 116;
    character, 117;
    return to England, 117;
    establishes martial law at Norfolk Island, 122;
    in temporary command, 143.
  Ross Point, 97.
  _Royal George_, 92.
  _Royal Prince_, 19.
  Russell, Mr. Clark, his sketch of Dampier, 40.

  Sadeur, James, 37.
  Sailors, dress of, 31;
    life on board ship, 32;
    compared with the modern, 32, 33;
    improvement in the class, 48;
    food and accommodation, 49.
  Sandwich Islands, 51.
  Sandwich, Lord, 67, 68.
  Sandy Hook, 93.
  Santham, Mr. G., 70.
  _Sardam_, the frigate, 14.
  Saunders, Sir Charles, 93.
  _Scarborough_, 80.
  Schanck, Cape, 281;
    Mount, 281.
  Schanck, Captain, 280.
  Scilly Isles, 247.
  _Scipio_, 169.
  Scott, Captain, 287.
  Selkirk, Alexander, 43.
  Semple, Major, 132.
  Shark's Bay, 8, 36, 38.
  Shortland, 105.
  Shortlands, 279.
  Sierra Leone, 241.
  Simon's Bay, 223, 288.
  _Sirius_, 77, 82, 93, 137, 140, 143;
    wreck of the, 96-98.
  Skirving, 165.
  Sleaford, 169.
  Smith, 234;
    his work at Pitcairn, 234.
  Smollett, _Roderick Random_, 31.
  Solander, Dr., 53, 70.
  South Sea Islands, 179.
  Southwell, extracts from his letters, 95, 96-98.
  Spanish, voyages to Australia, 4.
  Spencer, Lord, 211.
  Spithead, 76, 222, 232.
  Spragge, Captain Sir Edward, 19.
  Stephens, Mr. Philip, 59.
  Sterling, 291.
  Stewart, 229;
    imprisoned on the _Pandora_, 230;
    drowned, 231.
  Stingray Bay, 57.
  _Stirling Castle_, 75.
  Stokes, 291.
  Storm Bay Passage, 159.
  _Success_, 291.
  Sunda, Strait of, 242.
  _Supply_, 77, 96, 140, 141, 143.
  Sutherland, Forby, 57.
  _Swallow_, 50, 51, 100, 137.
  Swan, Captain, 19.
  Swan Point, 21.
  _Swiftsure_, 89.
  Sydney, 59;
    harbour, 81, 184.
  _Sydney Cove_, wreck of the, 170, 176.
  _Sydney Gazette_, the first paper, 157.
  Sydney, Lord, 76.

  Table Bay, 101.
  _Tagus_, 233.
  Tahiti, 50, 52, 105, 169, 222, 223, 229, 234.
  _Tamar_, 50, 291.
  Tasman, Commander Abel Janszoon, his voyages and discoveries, 7, 15, 37;
    death at Batavia, 16;
    draught of the coast of Australia, 36.
  Tasmania, 170;
    capital of, 290.
  Tench, Captain, 137, 279;
    his history of New South Wales, 82, 118, 138.
  Teneriffe, 78, 223.
  Therenot, extract from his _Recueil de Voyages Curieux_, 11-15.
  Therry, Judge, his reminiscences of New South Wales, 154;
    on the revolt against Captain Bligh, 273, 274.
  Thompson, 257.
  Timor, 20, 39, 198, 226, 228, 249.
  Tofoa, 224, 226, 228.
  _Tom Thumb_, 170.
  _Topaz_, 239.
  Torbay, 113.
  Torres, Luis Vaez de, his explorations, 4.
  Torres Straits, 6, 8, 16, 58, 184, 227.
  Trafalgar, battle of, 214.
  Transportation, commission of enquiry, 73.
  Tribulation, Cape, 61.
  _True Briton, The_, extract from, 236.
  Tubuai, 234.

  Valparaiso, 181, 241, 242.
  Van Diemen, Antonio, Governor-General of Batavia, 7.
  Van Diemen's Land, 7, 95, 120, 177, 182, 223;
    settlement at, 157.
  Vancouver, 279;
    expedition under, 143.
  _Venerable_, 113.
  _Venus_, 178.
  Vessel, a sixth-rate, 26.
  Victoria, 57, 171.
  _Victoria_, sailors of the, 33.
  _Victory_, 93;
    launched in 1765, 48.
  Vigo, 66.
  _Virginia_, 137.
  _Vryheid_, 248.

  _Waaksamheyd_, 99, 101.
  _Wager_, loss of the, 33;
    crew, 49.
  Wallis, 51, 65;
    in command of the _Dolphin_, 50.
  _Warrior_, 247.
  Waterhouse, Captain, 179.
  Wattamolla Harbour, 171.
  Wentworth, William Charles, 291.
  West, Dr., extract from, on Governor Bligh, 274.
  Westall, 183.
  Weybehays, 12.
  White, on the colony of New South Wales, 83.
  Wickham, 291.
  Wilkinson, 65.
  William III., 23, 29.
  Williams, 234.
  Wilson's Promontory, 282, 283.
  Windmill Hills, 283.
  Wouterlos, 14.
  Wreck Island, 194, 197.
  Wright, Edward, 35.

  _Xenophon_, 183.

  York, Cape, 5, 8, 58.
  York, Duke of, 22.
  Young, Admiral Sir George, 74.
  Young, 234, 235.

  _Zeewigk_, 17.


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