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Historical Records of New Zealand

T. H. Armstrong to Commissioner Bigge

T. H. Armstrong to Commissioner Bigge.

H.M. Sloop Shamrock, Spithead, March 28th, 1822.


On the 25 of March I again tryed the strength of your rope, and found to my satisfaction the New Zealand rope equally as strong as before. It had been wet with salt water. I done according to your desire, and spliced it to a piece of its own dimensions, and exposed it to salt water twelve hours every day for twenty-five days, which was sufficient to try its resistance of salt water; but I found that it grew remarkable stiff in salt water, as the lines made by the natives of New Zealand, but I think it is owing to there not being tar enough in it to resist salt water, but I would answer for anything in the dry remarkable well it is amazing strong, for it broke a piece of Government rope that by our calculation ought to hold in weight one ton more than the New Zealand rope, and from my opinion there is not a stronger piece of rope in England than it is of the same dimensions. I have sent you several pieces of the rope it broke as a specimen of the goodness of the rope. The rope was tryed by a fair and equal strain, and I can assure you that it was fairly tryed without showing favour to one rope or the other, yet in my opinion if there was more tar in the New Zealand rope that it would be more plyint in salt water. I will send the rope to you by the conveyance that it came, so the time is elapsed that you desire me to keep it, and if at any other time I can serve you I will do it with the greatest of pleasure, as I consider myself under an everlasting obligation to you, for the kindness that you have honoured me with is far from what I ever expected, and except my good wishes as it is all in my power to offer, and allow me to remain, &c.,