Other formats

    TEI XML file   ePub eBook file  


    mail icontwitter iconBlogspot iconrss icon

Historical Records of New Zealand

Ex-Governor Bligh To Sir Joseph Banks. (Bligh Papers.)

Ex-Governor Bligh To Sir Joseph Banks. (Bligh Papers.)

His Majesty’s ship Hindostan, Rio Janerio, 11th August, 1810.


In continuation of my former letters, I have the honor to acquaint you, by the Chichester Packet, which is now to sail, that the arrangement of embarking the 102nd Regiment under my orders, in His Majesty’s ships Hindostan, Porpoise, and Dromedary, being completed, I left Port Jackson on the 12th of May, and arrived here on the 25th ultimo. The troops and crews having suffered considerably from the severity of the weather round Cape Horn, it obliged us to come hither to prevent much sickness, which was likely to have taken place, and to repair our ships. The whole is now affected except in the Dromedary, which I fear will prevent our sailing until Tuesday, the 14th.

Before we left Sydney accounts were brought from the Derwent of the death of Colonel Collins, and Colonel Paterson died on the 21st of June on board the Dromedary off Cape Horn.

In my despatch of the 9th March I stated that Lieutenant-Colonel Foveaux was permitted by Governor Macquarie to separate from the regiment and sail in a brig called the Experiment for England. Some mercantile pursuits obliged that vessel to proceed to New Zealand, where, meeting with a ship called the Speke, he chose to quit the Experiment and embark in her. On our arrival at this place we met the Speke proceeding to sea; but light winds obliging her to anchor, and knowing who we were, the master during the night returned and applied to proceed Home under our convoy, and will accompany us accordingly; while it appears that Lieut.-Colonel Foveaux considers his arrival in England before me of such consequence as to proceed in the Packet if she sails before us, which it is expected.

page 306

As a report, sir, which I have every reason to believe to be true, I find this officer is sanguine in his expectations of being appointed Lieutenant-Governor of the Derwent; but whatever motives they are that make him so desirous of appearing in England before me, I hope the subject of my despatches from the time of his taking the command upon him from Major Johnston, in place of obeying my written orders to reinstate me in the Government, to the time of Colonel Paterson’s arrival, may be allowed to repel any influence which may be made in his favor previous to my arrival.

As it became Mr. Judge-Advocate Bent’s opinion that it was necessary to have further advice from Government how he was legally to act, and that the Governor could not legally send Home any man against his consent except those holding appointments under Government, I could not bring any one to trial, and some egregious offenders, therefore, remain in the colony. But on the part of the Crown, pursuant to my Lord Castlereagh’s directions in his letter to me of the 15th of May, 1809, I have embarked with me Mr. Palmer, Commissary; Mr. Gore, Provost-Marshal; Mr. Williamson, Deputy Commissary; Mr. Divine, Principal Superintendant; the Rev’d Mr. Fulton, Chaplain; Mr. Oakes, the Chief Constable; Mr. Suttor and Mr. Mason, planters. These persons will declare unquestionable truths of the evils existing in the territory, and give testimony of what has been transacted.

Mr. Atkins, the late Judge-Advocate, is on board, having been ordered Home by Governor Macquarie.

I have, &c.,

W’M BLigh.