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Historical Records of New Zealand Vol. II.

Transactions, Remarks &c on board the Endeavour at Duskey — Bay, New Zealand

Transactions, Remarks &c on board the Endeavour at Duskey
Bay, New Zealand

1795: October 12th, Saturday. On the morning of this day I attended Captains. Bampton and Dell to Luncheon Cove with an intent of seeing the vessel which Capt. Raven's People had built and left there; we arrived at about 9 o'clock and landed at the wharf, which was still standing, but was knocked off the posts which supported it, by the carelessness of the boats crew; we caught a few fish in the entrance of the cove, which we fried, and ate in the house; we afterwards looked at the page 523 vessel and I was a little vexed to hear them express a dislike to almost every part of her. We found in the House, which had, thro' violence of the weather lost a part of its thatch; a number of Casks, among which, was four which appeared full, one also was half full of salt. The Try pot* and steam were as they were left. The plank which had covered the vessell and drying house, had a part blown off, but was sound, and well seasoned. Some of the planks of ye vessell had shrunk and a plank or two on the bows at the wooden ends had rent. We set off for the Seal Islands at 11 and kill'd 15 Seals. We returned in the evening on board.

Sunday, 13th. In the morning we hoisted the long boat out. We were called into the cabin in consequence of a letter which Mr. Bowell had written to Captain Bampton which Capt. Bampton read to us; it requested leave to resign the birth he fill'd of Chief Officer; the Captn. would not consent to a discharge but consented to his resigning his Office which he appointed Mr. Waine to fill. Mr. Weathrall 2nd Officer and Myself third. We were employed sending empty Casks from the fore Hold to send on shore.

Monday 14th. The day was very very well occupied in heaving the ballast out, the weather of this day has been warm and clear, which has been the case since we have been here. Mr. Weathrall with the whole of the Europeans were employed on shore, felling timber for building a store house; on a stoney beach opposite to where the ship lay, and where the Britannia had wooded in 1793.

Tuesday 15th. The Captain with Captain Dell set out on a party to Pickersgile Harbour. Mr. Arms went with Mr. Bowell to the Seal Islands.

Tuesday 15th. We were employed as before, at 8 in the evening the Captain returned from Pickersgile Harbour, he had shot two Redbills and a Duck—and had caught some fish— and appeared very well pleased with the excursion. Messrs Bowell and Arms returned soon after with a few fish, they had not kill'd any seals, being unused to the sport. In the morning we were employed getting plank and sundry other articles on shore, from what I have seen this day, of the condition of the ship I think it will be unsafe, attempting to proceed in her to India. This day has been cloudy, in the night only we had heavy rain. Mr. Arms went to Commorant Cove and shot about a dozen and a half of wild fowl among which was four painted ducks.

Wednesday 16th. This day has exceeded, in warmth, and pleasantness, all I ever before saw, In Duskey Bay; We have

* [Note in Manuscript.] An Iron boiler of 84 gallons.

page 524 been employed in sending on shore plank, Gun Carriages, and Empty Casks. Mr. Arms went to haul the seine in Goose Cove and returned without a fish. The mess party had good success. Mr. Weathrall and party on shore building a storehouse.

Thursday 17.—We have this day had frequent flurries from the Valley, the sky has been clear and the weather pleasant. We were employed sending plank &c. on shore.

Friday 18th. The night rainy and the succeeding morning cloudy, the forenoon was, however, clear and serene; We were obliged to muster all hands, and threaten to turn them ashore, they having, of late been rather backward in the discharge of their Duty. The greater part of the day was expended in sending on shore the Guns; the remaining part starting some water from the After Hold.

Saturday 19th. This day began with fine weather, in the night we had rain and cloudy wr. in the morning, we got the remainder of the Guns out, two of which were lost by the upsetting of raft. Two anchors were also sent on shore. I forgot to mention that on Thursday last the Carpenter—in below at the breasthooks, prized the lower one 2 inches with his axe— a proof of the very decayed situation of the ship at that part.

Sunday 20th. Cloudy weather succeeded by pleasant and clear. In the morning we were getting out the bowsprit, We were also desired to survey the ship, the following persons were present. Viz: Mr. E. T. Dell, Commander of the Fancy, Snow; Messrs. Dennison & Fell his First and 2nd Officers. Mr. Wm. Bowell, passenger, Mr. Arms Do Messrs Waine & Weathrall and myself attended by the Carpenters of both vessels.

The condition we found her in, justifies what has before been said, from occular demonstration we found, that, all the breast Hooks were loose, they were on the spot prized very easily up with a Crow. Of the lower one the bolts had worked 2 inches out. Her stern was entirely decayed, and the remaining parts, as timbers, plank & lining in so bad a condition that we think it a miracle she held together in the bad weather we experienced.

I afterwards went with the crew of the Pinnace, to cut flax to thatch the House, there being but small quantities and that scattered so wide and obviously that we got but little.

Sunday. After dinner, I took the boat to the head of the Cove in hopes of finding better success, but with little effect to compensate the loss, I went to look at the place, where we, in our last voyage in the Britannia, saw a great fall of water and which, I had some curiosity to see; it was now perfectly dry, about 10 yards up the valley, I heard a very loud noise seeming to proceed from a considerable cascade, I followed it page 525 and found it came from a subterranean passage under a rock which had only one opening, thro which I crept, the hole I was in was dark. I heard the water still louder, but saw none it appeared, by the particular hollow sound to be at some distance below me it is rather remarkable, that though I travelled about 150 Yds. to see if I could discover its source, or the opening into this subterranean passage, I found none.

Monday 21st. Cloudy weather without rain, Empd. getting up shears for the Foremast; I hinted to Ct. Bampton the difficulty of getting flax for thatch and he desired me to rig the Long Boat to get the plank which is cut at Luncheon Cove This has Empd me the greater part of this day.

Tuesday 22nd. At 6 in the Morning I set off for Luncheon Cove and arrived at about 10. We loaded the boat, and Cooked some Victuals for the people, we then set off for the Ship, where we arrived at 5 in the evening, the foremast was out and shears shifted for the Main Mast. The weather all this day has been foggy, a light air from the S.S.W.

Wednesday 23. Very pleasant weather. We this morning discovered that some rascals had broke open the tank in which the Rice was kept, and had stolen a considerable quantity. Instant search was made for obtaining the knowledge of persons so void of sense and honesty, a quantity of rice was found in the possession of Thomas Beadle (one of those whom Capt. Bampton had given a passage) which had been stolen by Carey (a soldier deserted and who had secreted himself in the ship) and, as both were evidently guilty, On. B. delivered them to be punished by the People on shore which was done: It is a common maxim I have adopted, of thinking, that, an Idle worthless fellow is scarcely, if ever, honest, in this, as in all similar cases I daily see it verified.

What we have most to regret is, that our own people are guilty, as well as the Sydnians, several of the Steersmen* having been seen in the act, we have not, however, as yet, been able to catch them; or they would have been severely punished. If they steal, we cannot expect anything else of the others, who have daily examples set them by those persons who ought, and it must be supposed, would endeavour to detect others, in the commission of crimes so much to the prejudice of the whole.

We sent all our rice, Dholl, Arms & Ammunition on board the Fancy. The remainder of the day we were Empd. unrigging & getting out the Main Mast.

Thursday 24th. The day began with a thick haze and light airs from N.N.W. at 8 A.M. I set off with the long boat for

* [Note in Manuscript.] Seamen appropriated to the uses only of steering, stowing, and repairing the ship sails.

page 526 a dozen casks of water, the falls about Facill Harbour being dry, I went to Earshell Cove, and fill'd the casks at a place, where the water runs from a rock; and where, it appears to be a continual stream. On our return the wind freshened and blew so hard that with twelve butts of water, I could hardly carry the whole sails, we kept them, however, up until we had the misfortune to carry away the bowsprit & Gaff at once; it was with great difficulty we were able to fetch boat passage; which, however, we effected and at 3 in the afternoon arrived on board. The Mizen Mast had been got out & the shears down. 1 this day signed 3 Papers concerning the condition & survey of the Ship.

Friday 25th. Cloudy weather throughout; Employed getting the two New Cables on shore, in the afternoon we unmoored the Ship, and sent one Long Boat-load of rigging on Shore.

Saturday 26th. In the morning, cloudy with showers of rain. At 6 I took the Pinnance & 4 men to look for an empty Bbl. which had drifted from the house on shore, on my way 1 saw two brace of Ducks, they were so tame as to let the boat row almost on them; one of them I struck with the boat's tiller, but not hard enough to disable him, they still kept swimming ahead of the boat, and I regretted I had no Gun. We found the Cask on one of the Parrot Islands full of water. Employed sending ballast from the Main and after Hatch ways. Our boat has daily been sent to fish with a man from each mess, and they have very seldom caught less than a fish a man for this whole Ships Company.

1795. Sunday 27th. Very disagreeable day, as was the preceding night, at 2 in the morning, the ship struck against a rock which caused her to sal'l considerably; at 8 A.M. we sounded on it, and had ½ 1–¼ less 2 and 2 fms. in diffierent parts; it seems to join to that on which the Britannia lay in 1793. The first opportunity I have, I will make a sketch of the Cove. The morning was occupied in shifting our birth and the afternoon getting ballast out. The wind which has blown in heavy gusts, has varied from W.N.W. to NE.

Monday 28th. As disagreeable as the day which proceeded it; rain & wind. It was found necessary for Cn Bampton a second time, to assure the people, as his last and fixed resolution, that they who had refused, to assist in the necessary duty of the Ship, should receive no assistance from him; this, accompanied with a reproof, and gentle admonition, had a very good effect on all, they promised to attend strictly to the discharge of their duty. It is resolved that they are all to live on shore, to be more at hand.

page 527

Tuesday 29th. Rain in showers, wind variable. Empd getting ballast out. Nothing remarkable has happened.

Wednesday 30th. Throughout the whole day, we had heavy gusts from the Northward. We were employed sending on board the Fancy, sails & sundry stores.

Thursday 31st. This day has been the most disagreeable we have hitherto had, it has blown with uncommon violence from the Northwd. and has been attended with excessive heavy rain.

Friday 1st Novr. Still rainy, altho' the wind has abated, much of its former violence; We found the Starboard Cable cut entirely thro' by rubbing against the rocks. We slippd the other and hauled the Ship on shore for the purpose of seeing if it was possible to get her high enough to repair her as it was Spring Tide.