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drowning man exhausted, and sinking, he dashed forward again, diving after him, and happily succeeded in saving his life.
For this honorable act he would have received a remission of sentence; but ere it could arrive, he and five others made their escape. He had engaged with these men in the plan to seize the boat, and although sure of the success of the application in his favor, he could not now draw back, The result I have already shown.
There were two more men concerned in the mutiny, who, with those I have mentioned, and those killed on board the brig, made
the number of the boat's crew. But neither of these men came under my charge, being both Roman Catholics.
At length the brig, which had been dispatched with an account of the affair, returned, and brought the decision of the Governor of New South Wales. He had found it extremely difficult, almost impossible, to obtain fitting members for the commission, who would be willing to accept the terms proposed by the government, or trust themselves in this dreadful place, and, therefore, he had determined that the prisoners should be sent up for trial. The men were sadly disappointed at this arrangement. They wished much to end their days here, and they dreaded both the voyage and the distracting effect of 1.ew scenes. They cling, too, with grateful at
tachment to the commandant's family, and the persons who, during their long imprisonment, had taken so strong an interest in their welfare. I determined to accompany them, and watch for their perseverance in well-doing, that I might counsel and strengthen them under the fearful ordeal I could not doubt they would have to pass.
The same steady consistency marked the conduct of these men to the moment of their embarkation. There was a total absence of all excitement; one deep, serious feeling appeared to possess them, and its solemnity was communicated to all of us. They spoke and acted as men standing on the confines of the unseen world, and who not only thought of its wonders, but, better still, who seemed to have caught something of its spirit and purity.
November. The voyage up was a weary, and, to the prisoners, a very trying one. In a prison, on the lower deck of a brig of one hundred and eighty-two tuns, fifty-two men were confined. The place itself was about twenty feet square, of course low, and badly ventilated. were all ironed, and fastened to a heavy chain rove through iron rings let into the deck, so that they were unable, for any purpose, to move from the spot they occupied—scarcely, indeed, to lie down. The weather was also unfavorable,
The vessel tossed and pitched most fearfully during a succession of violent squalls, accompanied by thunder and lightning. I can not describe the wretchedness of these unhappy convicts—sick, and surrounded by filth, they were huddled together in the most disgusting manner. The heat was at times unbearable. There were men of sixty-quiet and inoffensive old menplaced with others who were as accomplished villains as the world could produce. These were either proceeding to Sydney, their sentences on the island having expired, or as witnesses in another case-a bold and wicked murder-sent there also for trial. The sailors on board the brig were for the most part the cowardly fellows who had so disgracefully allowed the brig to be taken from them; and they, as well as the soldiers on guard—some of them formed a part of the former one—had no very kindly feeling toward the mutineers. It may be imagined, therefore, that such feelings occasioned no alleviation of their condition. In truth, although there was no actual cruelty exhibited, they suffered many oppressive annoyances; yet I never saw more patient endurance. It was hard to bear, but their better principles prevailed.
. Upon the arrival of the vessel in Sydney, we learned that the case had excited an unusual interest. Crowds assembled to catch a glimpso
of the men as they landed; and while some applauded their daring, the great majority very loudly expressed their horror at the crime of which they stood accused.
I do not think it necessary to describe the trial, which took place in a few days after landing. All were arraigned except Barry. The prisoners' counsel addressed the jurors with powerful eloquence; but it was in vain; the crime was substantiated; and the jury returned a verdict of guilty against all the prisoners, recommending Woolfe to mercy.
During the whole trial, the prisoners' conduct was admirable; so much so, indeed, as to excite the astonishment of the immense crowd collected by curiosity to see men who had made so mad an attempt for liberty. They scarcely spoke, except once to request that the wounded man, who yet suffered much pain, might be allowed to sit down. Judgment was deferred till the following day. When they were then placed at the bar, the judge, in the usual manner, asked whether they had any reason to urge why sentence should not be pronounced upon them? It was a moment of deep solemnity; every breath was held; and the eyes of the whole court were directed toward the dock. Jones spoke in a deep, clear voice, and in a deliberate harangue pointed out some defects in the evidence, though
without the slightest hope, he said, of mitigating the sentence now to be pronounced on himself and fellows. Three of the others also spoke. Whelan said " that he was not one of the men properly belonging to the boat's crew, but had been called upon to fill the place of another man, and had no knowledge of any intention to take the vessel, and the part he took on board was forced upon him. He was compelled to act as he had done; he had used no violence, nor was he in any way a participator in any that had been committed.” At the conclusion of the address to them, Jones, amidst the deep silence of the court, pronounced a most emphatic prayer
mercy on his own soul and those of his fellow-prisoners, for the judge and jury, and finally for the witnesses. Sentence of death was then solemnly pronounced upon them all; but the judge informed Woolfe that he might hold out to him expectations that his life would be spared. They were then removed from the bar, and sent back to the condemned cells.
I can not say how much I dreaded my interview with them that day; for, although I had all along endeavored to prepare their minds for the worst result, and they had themselves never for a moment appeared to expect any other than this, I feared that the realization of their sad expectation would break them down. Hitherto