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and, the wind being unfavourable, I thought it more advisable to go round to the eastward of Staten-land than to attempt passing
through Straits le Maire. We passed New Year's Harbour and Cape St. John, and on Monday the 31st were in latitude 60° 1' south But the wind became variable and we had bad weather.
Storms, attended with a great sea, prevailed until the 12th of April. The ship began to leak, and required pumping every hour, which was no more than we bad reason to expect from such a continuance of gales of wind and high seas.
The decks also became so leaky that it was necessary to allot the great cabin, of which I made little use except in fine weather, to those people who had not births to hang their hammocks in, and by this means the space between decks was less crowded.
With all this bad weather, we had the additional mortification to find, at the end of every day, that we were losing ground; for notwithstanding our utmost exertions, and keeping on the most advantageous tracks, we did little better than drift before the wind. On Tuesday the 22nd of April, we had eight down on the sick list, and the rest of the people, though in good health. were greatly fatigued; but I saw, with much concern, that it was impossible to make a passage this way to the Society Islands, for we had now been thirty days in a tempestuous ocean. Thus the season was too far advanced for us to expect better weather to enable us to double Cape Horn; and, from these and other considerations, l'ordered the helm to be put a-weather, and bore away for the Cape of Good Hope, to the great joy of every one on board. 'We came to an anehor on Friday
the 23rd of May, in Simon's Bay, at the Cape, after a tolerable run. The ship required complete caulking, for she had become so leaky, that we were obliged to pump hourly in our passage from Cape Horn. The sails and rigging also required repair, and, on examining the provisions, a considerable quantity was found damaged.
Having remained thirty-eight days at this place, and my people having received all the advantage that could be derived from refreshments of er ery kind that could be met with, we sailed on the 1st of July.
A gale of wind blew on the 20th, with a high sea; it increased after noon with such violence, that the ship was driven almost forecastle under before we could get the sails clewed up. The lower yards were lowered, and the top-gallant mast got down upon deck, which relieved her much. We lay to all night, and in the morning bore away under a reefed foresail. The sea still running high, in the afternoon it became very unsafe to stand on: we therefore lay to all night, without any accident, excepting that a man at the steerage was thrown over the wheel and much bruised. Towards noon the violence of the storm abated, and we again bore away under the reefed foresail.
In a few days we passed the Island of St. Paul, where there is good fresh water, as I was informed by a Dutch captain, and also a hot spring, which boils fish as completely as if done by a fire. Approaching to Van Dioman's land, we had much bad weather, with snow and hail, but nothing was seen to indicate our vicinity, on the 13th of August, except a seal, which appeared at the distance of twenty leagues from it. We anchored in Adventure Bay on Wednesday the 20th.
In our passage hither from the Cape of Good Hope, the winds were chiefly from the westward, with very boisterous weather. The approach of strong southerly winds is announced by many birds of the albatross or peterel cribe: and the abatement of the gale, or a shift of wind to the northward by their keeping away. The thermometer also varies five or six degrees in its height, when a change of these winds may be expected.
in the land surrounding Adventure Bay are many forest trees one hundred and fifty feet high; we saw one which measured above thirty-three feet in girth. We observed several eagles, some beautiful blue-plumaged heron,
and parroquets in great variety.
The natives not appearing, we went in search of them towards Cape Frederick Henry. Soon after, coming to a grapnel close to the shore, for it was impossible to land, we heard their voices, like the cackling of geese, and twenty persons came out of the woods We threw trinkets ashore tied up in parcels, which they would not open until I made an appearance of leaving them; they then did so, and, taking the articles out, put them on their heads. On first coming in sight, they made a prodigious clattering in their speech, and held their arms over their heads. They spoke so quick, that it was impossible to catch one single word they uttered. Their colour is of a deep black; their skin scarified about the breast and shoulders. One was distinguished by his body being coloured with red ocbre, but all the others were painted black, with a kind of soot, so thickly laid over their faces and shoulders, that it was difficult to ascertain what they were like.
On Thursday, the 4th of September, we sailed out of Adventure Bay, steering first towards the east-south east, and then to the northward of east, when, on the 19th, we came in sight of a cluster of small rocky islands, which I named Bounty Isles. Soon afterwards we frequently observed the sea, in the night-time, to be covered by luminous spots, caused by amazing quantities of small blubbers, or medusæ, which emit a light like the blaze of a candle, from the strings or filaments extending from them, while the rest of the body continues perfectly dark.
We discovered the island of Otaheite on the 25th, and, before casting anchor next morning in Matavai Bay, such numbers of canoes had come off, that, after the natives ascertained we were friends, they came on board, and crowded the deck so much, that in ten minutes I could scarce find my own people. The whole distance which the ship had run, in direct and contrary courses, from the time of leaving England until reaching Otaheite, was twenty-seven thousand and eighty-six miles, which, on an average, was one hundred and eight miles each twenty-four hours.
Here we lost our surgeon on the 9th of December. Of late he had searcely ever stirred out of the cabin, though not apprehended to be in a dangerous state. Nevertheless, appearing worse than usual in the evening, he was removed where he could obtain more air, but without any benefit, for he died in an hour afterwards. This unfortunate man drank very hard, and was so averse to exercise, that he would never be prevailed on to take half a dozen turns on deck at a time, during all the course of the voyage. He was buried on shore.
On Monday the 5th of January, the small cutter was missed, of which I was immediately apprized. The ship's company being mustered, we found three men absent, who had carried it off. They had taken with them eight stand of arms and ammunition; but with regard to their plan, every one on board seemed to be quite ignorant. I therefore went on shore, and engaged all the chiefs to assist in recovering both the boat and the deserters. Accordingly, the former was brought back in the course of the day, by five of the natives; but the men were not taken until nearly three weeks afterwards. Learning the place where they were, in a different quarter of the island of Otaheite, I went thither in a cutter, thinking there would be no great difficulty in securing them with the assistance of the natives. However, they heard of my arrival; and when I was near a house in which they were, they came out wanting their fire-arms, anil delivered themselves up. Some of the chiefs had formerly seized and bound these deserters; but had been prevailed on, by fair promises of returning peaceably to the ship, to release them. But finding an opportunity again to get possession of their arms, they set the natives at defiance.
The object of the voyage being now completed, all the bread-fruit plants, to the number of one thousand and fifteen, were got on board on Tuesday the 31st of March. Besides these, we had collected many other plants, some of them bearing the finest fruits in the world; and valuable, from affording brilliant dyes, and for various properties besides. At sun
set of the 4th of April, we made sail from Otaheite, bidding farewell to an island where for twenty-three weeks we had been treated with the utmost affection and regard, and which seemed to increase in proportion to our stay. That we were not insensible to their kindness, the succeeding cir cumstances sufficiently proved; for to the friendly and endearing behaviour of these people may be ascribed the motives inciting an event that effected the ruin of our expedition, which there was every reason to be lieve would have been attended with the most favourable issue. Next morning we got sight
of the island Huaheine; and a double canoe soon coming alongside, containing ten natives, I saw among them a young man who recollected me, and called me by name. I had been here in the year 1780, with Captain Cook, in the Resolution. A few days after sailing from this island, the weather became squally, and a thick body of black clouds collected in the east. A water-spout was in a short time seen at no great distance from us, which appeared to great advantage from the darkness of the clouds behind it. As nearly as I could judgę, the upper part was about two feet in diameter, and the lower about eight inches. Scarcely had I made these remarks, when I observed that it was rapidly advancing towards the ship. We immediately altered our course, and took in all the sails except the foresail; soon after which it passed within ten yards of the stern, with a rustling noise, but without our feeling the least effect from its being so near. It seemed to be travelling at the
rate of about ten miles an hour, in the direction of the wind, and it dispersed in a quarter of an hour after passing us. It is impossible to say what injury we should have received, had it passed directly over us. Masts, I imagine, might have been carried away, bat I do notapprehend that it would have endangered the loss of the ship.
Passing several islands on the way, we anchored at Annamooka, on the 23d of April; and an old lame man called Tepa, whom I bad known here in 1777, and immediately recollected, came on board, along with others, from different islands in the vicinity. They were desirous to see the ship, and on being taken below, where the bread-fruit plants were arranged, they testified great surprise. A few of these being decayed, we went on shore to procure some in their place.
The natives exhibited numerous marks of the peculiar mourning which they express on losing their relatives; such as bloody temples, their heads being deprived of most of the hair, and what was worse, almost the whole of them had lost some of their fingers. Several fine boys, not above six years o!d, had lost both their little fingers; and several of the men, besides ibese, had parted with the middle finger of the right hand.
The chiefs went off with me to dinner, and we carried on a brisk trade for yams; we also got plantains and bread fruit. But the yams were in great abundance, and very fine and large. One of them weighed above forty-five pounds. Sailing canoes came, some of which contained not less than ninety passengers. Such a number of them gradually arrived from different islands, that it was impossible to get any
thing done, the multitude became so great, and there was no chief of sufficient authority to command the whole. I therefore ordered a watering party, then employed, to come on board, and sailed on Sunday the 26th of April.
We kept near the island of Kotoo all the afternoon of Monday, in hopes that some canoes would come off to the ship, but in this we were disappointed. The wind being northerly, we steered to the westward in the evening, to pass south of Tofoa; and I gave directions for this course to be continued during the night. The master had the first watch, the gunner the middle watch, and Mr. Christian the morning watch. This was the turn of duty for the night.
Hitherto the voyage had advanced in a course of uninterrupted prose perity, and had been attended with circumstances equally pleasing and satisfactory. But
a very different scene was now to be disclosed; a conspiracy had been formed, which was to render all our past labour produc
tive only of misery and distress; and it had been concerted with so much secrecy and circumspection, that no one circumstance escaped to betray the impending calamity:
On the night of Monday, the watch was set as I have described. Just before sunrise, on Tuesday morning, while I was yet asleep, Mr. Christian, with the master at arms, gunner's mate, and Thomas Burkitt, seaman, came into my cabin, and seizing me, tied my hands with a cord behind my back, threatening me with instant death if I spoke or made the least noise. I nevertheless called out as loud as I could, in hopes of assistance; but the officers not of their party were already secured by sentinels at their doors. At my own cabin door were three men, besides the four within ; all except Christian had muskets and bayonets; he had only a cutlass. I was dragged out of bed, and forced on deck in my shirt, suffering great pain in the mean time from the tightness with which my hands were tied. On demanding the reason of such violence, the only answer was abuse for not holding my tongue. The master, the
gunner, surgeon, master's mate, and Nelson the gardener, were kept confined below, and the fore hatchway was guarded by sentinels. The boatswain and carpenter, and also the clerk, were allowed to come on deck, where they saw me standing abast the mizen-mast, with my hands tied behind my back, under a guard, with Christian at their head. The boatswain was then ordered to hoist out the launch, accompanied by a threat, if he did not do it instantly, TO TAKE CARE OF HIMSELF.
The boat being hoisted out, Mr. Hayward and Mr. Hallet, two of the midshipmen, and Mr Samuel, the clerk, were ordered into it. I demonded the intention of giving this order, and endeavoured to persuade the people near me not to persist in such acts of violence; but it was to no effect; for the constant answer was, " Hold your tongue, Sir, or you are dead this moment."
The master had by this time sent, requesting that he might come on deck, which was permitted; but he was soon ordered back again to his cabin. My exertions to turn the tide of affairs were continued; when Chris tian, changing the cutlass he held for a bayonet, and holding me by the cord about my hands with a strong gripe, threatened me with immediate death if I would not be quiet; and the villains around me had their pieces cocked and bayonets fixed.
Certain individuals were called on to get into the boat, and were hur ried over the ship's side; whence I concluded that along with them I was to be set adrift. Another effort to bring about a change produced nothing but menaces of having my brains blown out.
The boatswain and those seamen who were to be put into the boat were allowed to collect twine, canvass, lines, sails, cordage, and eight-and twenty gallon casks of water; and Mr. Samuel got 150 pounds of bread with a small quantity of rum and wine: also a quadrant and compass: bus he was prohibited, on pain of death, to touch any map or astronomical book, and any instrument, or any of my surveys and drawings.
The mutineers having thus forced those of the seamen whom they wished to get rid of into the boat, Christian directed a dram to be served to each of his crew. I then unhappily saw that nothing could be done to recover the ship. The officers were next called on deck, and forced over the ship's side into the boat, while I was kept apart from every one abaft the mizen-mast. Christian, armed with a bayonet, held the cord fastening my hands, and the guard around me stood with their pieces cocked; but on my daring the ungrateful wretches to fire, they uncocked them. Isaac Martin, one of them, I saw had an inclination to assist me: and as he fed me with shaddock, my lips being quite parched, we explained each other's sentiments by looks. But this was observed, and he was removed. He then got into the boat, attempting to leave the ship; however, he was compelled to return. Some others were also kept contrary to their inclination. It appeared to me, that Christian was some time in doubt whether he VOL. VIK
should keep the carpenter or his mates. At length he determined on the latter, and the carpenter was ordered into the boat. He was perunitted, though not without opposition, to take his tool chest.
Mr Samuel secured my journals and comınission, with some important ship papers; this he did with great resolution, though strictly watched. He attempted to save the time-keeper, and a box with my surveys, drawings, and remarks, for fifteen years past, which were very numerous, when he was hurried away with Damn your eyes, you are weil off to get what you have.”
Much altercation took place among the mutinous crew during the transaction of this whole affair. Some swore, “ I'll be damned if he does not find his way home, if he gets any thing with him," meaning me; and when the carpenter's chest was carrying away, “ Damn my eyes, he will have a vessel built in a month;” while others ridiculed the helpless situation of the boat, which was very deep in the water, and had so little room for those who were in her. As for Christian he seemed as if meditating destruction on himself and every one else.
I asked for arms, but the mutineers laughed at me, and said I was well acquainted with the people among whom I was going; tour cutlasses, however, were thrown into the boat, after we were veered astern.
The officers and men being in the boat, they only waited for me, of which the masterat-arms informed Christian, who then said, " Come, Captain Bligh, your officers and men are now in the boat, and you inust go with them; it you attempt to make the least resistance, you will instantly be put to death;" and without further ceremony, I was forced over the side by a tribe of armed ruffians, where they untied my hands. Being in the boat, we were veered astern by a rope. A few pieces of pork were thrown to us, also the four cutlasses. The armourer and carpenter then called out to me to remember that they had no band in the transaction. After having been kept some time to make sport for these unfeeling wretches, and having undergone much ridicule, we were at length cast adrift in the open ocean.
Eighteen persons were with me in the boat,--the master, acting surgeon, botanist, gunner, boatswain, carpenter, master,and quarter-master's mate, two quarter-masters, the sail maker, two cooks, my clerk, the butcher, and a buy. There remained on board, Fletcher Christian, the master's mate; Peter Haywood, Edward Young, George Stewart, midshipmen; the master-at-arms, gunner's mate, boatswain's mate, gardener, armourer, carpen. ter's mate, carpenter's crew, and fourteen seamen, being altogether the most able men of the ship's company,
Having little or no wind, we rowed pretty fast towards the island of Tofoa, which bore north-east about ten leagues distant. The ship while in sight steered west-north-west, but this I considered only as a feint, for when we were sent away, “ Huzza for Otaheite!” was frequently heard among the mutineers.
Christian, the chief of them, was of a respectable family in the north of England. This was the third voyage he had made with me. Notwithstanding the roughness with which I was treated, the reinembrance of past kindnesses produced some remorse in him. While they were forcing me out of the ship, I asked him whether this was a proper return for the ma, uy instances he had experienced of my friendship? He appeared disturbed ai the question, and answered with much emotion, * That-Captain Bligh-that is the thing-I am in hell-1 am in hell." His abilities to take charge of the third waich, as I had so divided the ship's company, were fully equal to the task.
Haywood was also of a respectable family in the north of England, and a young man of abilities, as well as Christian. These two had been objects of my particular regard and attention, and I had taken great pains to instruct them, baving entertained hopes that, as professional pen, they would have become a credit to their country. Young was well