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Historical Records of New Zealand Vol. II.

Lieutenant Cook to Secretary Stephens

Lieutenant Cook to Secretary Stephens.

Endeavour, bark, 12 July, 1771.


My Lords Commiss'rs of the Admiralty were pleased in the year 1768, before I sail'd from England, to order the Endeavour, bark, to be supplied with one of Dr. Knight's azimuth compasses of an improved construction, and directed me upon my return to report to you how I found the same to answer; they, at the same time, were pleased to order on board a quantity of malt for scorbutic and other puthrid diseases, and directed that the surgeon was to keep a journal of its effects in such cases, which journal was to be transmitted to you at the end of the voyage.

Agreeable to their Lordships' commands, I am to acquaint you that I never once was able to make use of the compass in a troubled sea, and the reason was this, I could not make the brass box keep a horizontal plain; the motion of the ship always made it incline one way or another, from which it would not of itself return; I will not say that this was owing to any fault in its construction, but rather think it owing to my ignorance in not knowing properly how to adjust it; however, I think it by far too complex an instrument ever to be of general use at sea.

page 76

You will receive inclosed a journal of scorbutic cases, and the effects malt, made into fresh wort, had in the scurvy, drawn up by Mr. Perry, who was then Mr. Monkhouse's mate, and at his death succeeded him as surgeon of the bark, for Mr. Monkhouse, who did not die till we got to Batavia, left no journal properly drawn up and attested by himself. To Mr. Perry's remarks I have only to add, that in February, 1770, we found the malt so indifferent (notwithstanding it was properly dry and sweet) that the surgeon could make little or no use of it in the common way. Having at this time a good deal remaining, and in order that we might reap some benefit from it, I order'd as strong a wort to be made of it as possible, and in it boil'd ground wheat for the people's breakfasts; it made a very pleasant mess, which the people were very fond of; it took to make 22 or 24 gallons of wort from 4 to 7 gallons of malt, according as the casks turn'd out good or bad. We continued this method as long as we had any left, and had great reason to think that the people received much benefit from it.

I have, &c.,

Jam's Cook.


State and Condition of His Majesty's bark Endeavour, Lieu tenant James Cook, commander, in the Downs, the 12th July, 1771.

Complement 85 Prov'ns on b'd for the complem't at whole allowance—
Borne 82 Bread (days) 21
Muster'd 80 Beer (days) 0
Checqued— Arrack (days) 28
Widows' Men 2 Beef (weeks) 4
With leave 0 Pork (weeks) 4
Without leave 0 Pease or rice (weeks) 4
Lent 0 Oatmeal or rice (weeks) 4
Sick— Flour (weeks) 0
On board 19 Suet (weeks) 0
On shore 0 Thist (weeks) 0
the complement— Butter sugar (weeks) 4
Officers and servants 17 Cheese Sugar (weeks) 4
Petty and able 57 Oil (weeks) 0
Ordinary 0 Vinegar (weeks) 0
Landsmen 0 Tons of water (weeks) 10
Marines 8 Stores wanting—
Short of complement 3 Boatswain's, carpenter's. gunner's
Supern'y— Officers—
Belonging to the ships 0 Absent 0
Belonging to no ship 8 Occasion 0
Whole number victual'd 88
Condition of the bark Foul.
When last cleaned 12 Nov., 1770.

Jam's Cook.