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  ― 239 ―

PART THREE LETTERBOOK




  ― 240 ―



  ― 241 ―

Letters




  ― 241 ―

Clark to Capt. Phillips

Friendship Transport

Mothr. Bank Portsmh

April the 3rd. 1787

Sir,

Being one of the officers of the Detachment of Marines going to Botany Bay under your Command I will be much obliged to you to inform me if you have any objections or if ther is any impropriety for me to take my family out with me at present —— I doe not wish to put any person on board to any inconvenicy if the favour that I ask, You are So good to grant I am Sir

with the greatest Respect

Your Most obdt. Humble

Servt. Ralph Clark

Lieut. Mars.

To Capt. Phillips

No. 6 Suffolk Street

Hay Market

Phillip to Clark

London

10th. April 1787

Sir,

I have this Morning Seen the Secretary of State & mentioned Your wish of carrying out Mrs. Clark which cannot be granted

I am Sir

Your obedient

Humble Servant.

A Phillip

Lieut. Ralph Clark

Clark to Capt. A Phillips




  ― 242 ―

Friendship Transport

Portsmouth

April the 12/87

Sir,

I Received the favour of yours Yesterday, informing me that my wish could not be granted of carrying Mrs. Clark out with me —— I Return you my most Sinceer thanks for the trouble you have been at by applying to the Secretary of State for that purpose but cannot help Mention that I think it a great hardship in being debard So Small a favour when the Clergyman and every Private Man has that indulgance granted them if the[y] wish to carry ther wives and familys out with them, after which Sir You cannot help thinking other ways than as I doe —— I did not apply without Majr. Rosses approbation and if the favour had being granted I should not have made any application to have my wife and child Vitald if it had not being offerd me.

I am Sir withe the greatest Respect and wish for your health and Long life.

Sir

Your Most obedient

Humble Servant

Ralph Clark

Lieut Mars.

Capt. A Phillips

Phillip to Clark

London

13th. April 1787

Sir

Your request depended on the Minister & if Lord Sydney had consented I Certainly should not have made any objections as it is I think when you reflect on the many inconveniences that must have attended it you will be satisfyed of the propriety of the Refusal.




  ― 243 ―

When the settlement is made I make no doubt but Government will provided for the Passage of those officers wives who wish to join the Garrison.

I am Sir

Your most

Obedient Humble

Servant

A Phillip

Lieut R. Clark

Howe to Clark

Admiralty

16 April 1787

Sir

As the Service on which you were desirious of being Employed will probably Require as much attention to the military Duties of your profession as could be needful in time of War I conclude that Reflection will not fail of Suggesting to you, the perfect inexpediency of being Engaged in the concerns of a Domestic Nature which you would propose if it were dependant on my Authority to comply with the Request in your Letter of the 10 Instant

I am Sir

Your Humble Servt.

Howe

Lieut R Clark of Marines

Clark to Service

Friendship Transport

Apl. the 16, 1787

sir

I will be greatly obliged to you if my application meets with your approbation and the Service will permit my absents to apply to my Lords Commissioners


  ― 244 ―
of the Admiralty for ten days leave to goe to Plymouth to Settle my Private affairs Occasioned by the Secretary of State not permiting me to take my family out.

I am Sir with the greatest Respect

Sir

Your most obedient

Humble Servant

Ralph Clark

Lieut Mars.

on H.M. Service

Majr. R. Ross Marines

Clark to Phillip

Friendship Transport

Apl. 16/87

Sir

Your Letter of the 13th. inst. has fully opend my eyes to the propriety of the Secretary of States Refusal —— if it is not encroaching too much on your goodness to be so good, if my application meets with your approbation & the Service will permitt my absents to apply to my Lord Commissioner of the Admiralty for there Leave of Absents for ten days to goe to Plymouth to Settle my Private affairs which want my attendance much Occasioned by Mrs. Clark not being permited to goe out with me —— there will Still be one Capt. and one Subt. on board with the Detachment if the Leave Should be granted and Shall not fail of being back to my Duty at the Exparation of time.

I am Sir with the greatest Respect

Sir

Your Most

obedient Humble

Servant

Ralph Clark

Lieut Mars.

To Capt. A Phillip

Phillip to Clark




  ― 245 ―

London

April 17th. 1787

Sir,

As I expect to be at Portsmh. from day to day, the Leave of Absents you Request cannot possible be granted & I hope it will not anyways injure your Private affairs —— a Request of this kind to me Should me should have been thro' Major Ross as the Commanding officer of the detachment, but as present it is not possible you should Succeed and it would therefore be only giving yourself Unnecessary trouble, for I hope we shall Sail very shortly

I am Sir

Your Humble Servant

A Phillip

Lieut Clark

Kempster to Clark

Stone House

Thursday Evening

[April the 19th, 1787]

Dear Clark

Be assured I am not the less your friend for not regularly answering Your Letters —— I consider them as almost an extravagance to you but am and shall ever be happy to hear from you —— what I mean by Extravagance is on the part of people writing without having any thing useful, novel or instructive to communicate and now to comply with your Request Relating to Lord Sydney —— I do not approve of your writing to him and still less to Commodore Phillips which Mrs. Clark tells me you talk off, consider my friend if ever it comes to Majr. Rosses ear that you have writting he will be your enemy and you must see the imprudence of being on ill terms with a man who will have it so much in his power to be disagreable if offended and that he cannot fail of being, as he first mentioned the unwillingness of the Lords of the Admiralty to alow officers wives or Familys to goe out —— on the other hand, I think you were wrong to revive those hopes in the bosom of your wife which Surely if you Reflected Seriously on the Subject you could not wish


  ― 246 ―
Realized —— consider the many ill conveniences to which she would be exposed by going out at this time —— picture to your self a woman to whome you are attached by the most tender ties attacked by Sickness, and when arrived at the place of your destination not a hospitals roof to Shelter her or any provision made for her refreshment nor a Single female to exert herself in the friendly officis of humanity a Sick female Stands in So much need of —— I trust it will be unnecessary for me to say more —— you must see the impropriety of it and I am confident it was Suggested by your affection and Strengthened by your unhappiness in not having it in your power to leave Mrs. C: with a better provision but I am Sure your cool judgement will induce you to lay aside all thoughts of a further application.

Charles Reynolds wrot to the Admiralty and got his Answer to day that an officer was appointed, Quarters are very dull —— Mrs. Crozier is come down and they are in Flemings Lodgings —— My Mother and Mrs. K: join me in good wishes.

Dear Clark

Your Sinceer friend

   G. Kempster

Clark to Shortland

Friendship Transport

April the 21st 1787

Sir

It is now a month Since the first application was made to you, by the Master of the Ship, for being Supplyd with the Cotts alloted by Government for the Use of the officers of the Detachment —— as the officers on board the other Transports have being Supplyd with them by you for some time past, beg to have your Answer by Return what day we may Expect them —— as I cannot think of Remaining any longer without them therfor Shall make my application to the Admiralty for them if we are not Supplyd in the course of two or three day at most.

I am Sir

Your Obedt. Servt.

R. Clark

Lieut Mar.

To Lieut Shortland

Clark to Kempster




  ― 247 ―

Friendship

April the 23rd. 1787

Dear Kempster

On the other Side you will See the first letter that I Received from Capt. Phillip which I will be so good as to give it to Mrs. Clark —— there is no news here nor no account when we shall sail —— the Commondor was Expected down Yesterday, cannot inform you if he is or not —— I had a letter from him a few days Since informing that we should sail very shortly —— I sent Mrs. C to day also a letter which I had from him —— we are very well & healthy on board —— I wish I could say the same of the Rest of the Transports —— Ross offerd me Private leave for ten day which I am certain you will say that I was in the Right not to accept on account of the exspence —— make my best Respects to Mrs. K and your Mother and am

Your Most Sinceer

friend

R: Clark

PS. 2d. Lieut Dawe is on board the Commd. ship by order of the Admlty.

To Lieut Kempster

Clark to Revd. Mr. Johnson

Friendship Transport

Munday Eveng.

[23rd April, 1787.]

Sir

The Surgeon has Represent to me that one of the Convict children will not live untill the morning the Same not having been Christened —— have to beg of you to be so good as to come on board and Battize it as I think it my duty to inform you

I am Sir

Your Most

Obedient Servt.

R: Clark

Lieut. Mars.

On Service

To the

Revd. Mr. Johnson

Alexander

Clark to Hunter




  ― 248 ―

Friendship Transport

emsp;Motr. Bank

Apl. the 24/87

Sir

I here with inclose you, According to Major Rosses orders of Yesterday, the Letters from the Convicts on board here, to there friends

I am Sir

Your Most obedt. Servt.

Ralph Clark

Lieut. Mars.

on Service

Capt. Hunter

M: S: Sirius

Clark to Hunter

Friendship Transport

Aprl 24, 1787

Sir

The enclosed I have this moment taking from one of the Seamen beloning to the Transport, without there is an order to the Master of the Ship to prevent the Seamen brining or taking Letters on board to the Convicts, it will be impossible to put Major Rosses orders of Yesterday So Effectively in Execution

I am Sir

Your Most

Obedt. Humble Servt.

Ralph Clark

Lieut Mars.

On Service

Capt. Hunter

M: S: Sirius

Clark to Hunter




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Friendship Transport

Apl. 24, 1787

Sir

I here enclose you, five Letters which the post man has brought on board for the Convicts

I am Sir

Your Most obedient

Servant

Ralph Clark

Lieut Mars.

on Service

To Capt. Hunter

M: S: Sirius

Clark to Shortland

Friendship Transport

Apl. 24, 1787

Sir

I want to send ane officer on His Majs. Service to Capt. Hunter on board the Sirius —— I beg you will order a Boat for that purpose as I cannot have seamen on Board here to goe in the Boat and the duty of the Ship will not permit me to Send marines on that Service

I am Sir

Your Most

Obedient Humble

Servt

R. Clark

Lieut Mars.

on Service

To Lieut Shortland

Agent of Transports

Clark to Kempster




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Friendship

friday Morning

[April the 27th, 1787]

Dear Kempster,

You will greatly oblige me to Send the enclosed to Mrs. Clark by one of the Marines as Soon as possible —— we Shall not Sail by all Accounts this month yet the Commd. is not yet come down —— Excuse the Shortness of this —— my best wishes to Mrs. K and your Mother

Very Sincerely Yours

R. Clark

Clark to Bedlake

Friendship Transport

May the 10/87

Dr. Sir

[Directed] by friendship cannot think of leaving England without returning you and Mrs. Bedlake my most Sinceer thanks for your kind attention and repeated marks of of friendship to Mrs. Clark and Son —— Believe me dr. Sir few thing are predominent with me than to here of the health and welfare of you and family & Shall alwayse be happy to hear from you, hope you will favour me every opportunity that offers with a few lines —— we Shall Sail from this to morrow if the wind remains in the Same Quarter as it is at present but I am Exceedingly Sorrow to Say that the detachment on board here and more so on board the other Transports doe not goe out with that Spirrit that was Expected the[y] would when they turnd and Volunteer for this Service and I am certain you will think as I doe that the officers and men have great cause to murmore when I inform you that Major Ross has informd use that we are not to be supplyd after our landing at Botany Bay any Spirrits or wine of any Kind which is a very great hardship on use all to have nothing but water to drink for four Years —— ther is ane express gone to the Admlty. with the complaint of use all of the hardships that we Shall lay under if ther is not Spirits of some kind Supplyd —— ther is also ane order this moment come on board from the Commd. for all dogs to be relanded beloning to the men and officers althou he himself carrys out between thirty and forty —— our Ship is very healthy I wish I


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could Say the Same of the rest of the Transports —— will thank you to make my best wishes and Comps. to Mrs. Bedlake and inform Kempster, Reynolds and Mrs. Clark that I have wrot by this post —— must conclude.

remain with hearty wishes for your health and welfare

Your Sinceer friend

Ralph Clark

Lieut Rs. Bedlake

Marines

Groves

Plymh.

Clark to Hartwell

Friendship Transport

June the 10, 1787

Dear Sir

As we Sail to day for South America I have sent you these few lines Accd. to promise to enable you to Receive my [Subs]note from the date here off —— have no news to inform you —— the whole fleet is remarkable healthy as is your very much obliged

Humble Servt.

Ralph Clark

To B. Hartwell Esqr.

Clark to Kempster

[September the 3rd, 1787]

Dr. Kempster

with the Sinceerest pleasure I sit down to writ you my friend and to inform you that I am in and have been every Since I left England in great good health (a little Sea Sickness excepted) but what would add a great dele of happiness


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to the good health that I enjoy that if I could heer that you and your good family are the same but I trust in god that this will find you all in that State —— we arrived heer in company with all the fleet the 5 of Last month after a long & tedious passaged of eight weeks from Teneriff and which make it also very uncomfortable was (although we had the finest weather that ever a fleet had) the very Small allowance of Water the officers' Seamen, Marines and Convicts was put on of three Pursers pints a head in the 24 hours Scarce a Sufficiency to wett our Tongues in So hott a climat as it was but Blessed be to god we found no bad Effects from it for we are and have been Exceedingly healthy all the way having only Burried one male convict who was at deaths door before he came on board of use —— the whole fleet has been very healthy (the Alexander Excepted) who has Burried 28 —— I am happy to Say that the detachment has not lost a Single man —— we Shall Sail from this place to Morrow for the Cape of Good hope which will I Believe be the last place we shall call at untill we Arrive at Botany Bay wher I wish to god we wair once got and the three Years over for I never was So Sick of any thing in my life as I am of this expedition for the many Melancholy hours that I every day spend when I am by myself that I am some times So low when my Mess mates comes down from walking the deck when he asks me any thing that I am not able to give them ane Answer for Kempster ther is Some thing foretells me that my Betsey or my Boy Are no more, oh that I could but heer from her, I should then be the most happiest man on earth but I have one favour to beg of You my dr. friend which is (that if my imagination Respectin Mrs. Clark or Ralph should only proved of not been able to heer from her as often as I use to when at the Mother Bank) that should she have any thought of coming out to me doe persuad her from it as much as possible you can for I meen and am Resolved to Return home the first Relieve (if I live So long) for I cannot think of my Betsey coming throu so many dangers and difficultys as must attend her should she attemp it —— I have wrot her by the Same Conveyance that this goes and have beg of her not to think of coming —— from the appearance we will I can see if promotion will goe in the detachment by the Vacancy that may happen in it, for poor Capt. Campble is by the doctors Account not long for this World if he dose not Return home which I Believe he intends to doe when we arrive at the Cap of Good hope if he lives So long which is a very great chance against him then ther is old Maxwell who is drinking himself to death as fast a he well can —— Majr. Ross went on board of him a few days past to see if he would get him to change into the Charlott with Capt. Tench to see if he could reform him which M. Refused to doe —— Ross then desired him to goe home which he also Refused I think he had Better take cear and not play too much with Ross and the Comdr. (who is a very good man) —— I hope to have a letter from you at the cape when we get ther and must beg of You to write me every time that Ships Sail from England to Botany also by every East indiaman and direct them to be left at the Cape to the cear of Robt. Gordon Esqr. Commandant of the Cape of good hope, as he will take cear of them for me for ther will be Ships comming


  ― 253 ―
up from Botany bay every two months to bring things from thence to the Setlement Stock and other things —— I will also thank you for your old Newspaper the[y] will doe to pass a way the long and tedious hours which I am affraid I will have many of while at Botany —— I shall write you by the first Ship that Sails from the Cape or from the first other place that we may call at —— will thank you to inform my Betsey that I have wrot her by this opportunity for fear She Should not Receive it and I Remain with the Sinceerest wishes for the health and welfare of you and your good family —— make my best wishes to Mrs. K: and Mother and a thousand kisses to the little ones —— Compt. also to Bedlake and his good woman and am Your Very Sinceer and Affectioned friend

Ralph Clark

I have Sent Reynolds a few lines also from this

Remember me to all inquiring friends at Quarters

Clark to Meredith

Friendship Transport

Octr. 15th. 1787

Sir

From the Publick Accusation of Lieut Faddy last night to You, of my behaving unbecoming the character of ane officer and Gentleman therfor in Justice to my Brother officers the Corps and Self I cannot think of doing duty as one of the officers beloning to the detachment untill my character and conduct as ane officer and and Gentleman has been investigated by a General Court Martial, I therfor beg of You, Sir to be so good as to apply for the Same on me and Shall consider myself as a Prisoner untill the Judgment of the above Court Martial is Known

I am Sir

Your Most Obdt.

Humble Servt.

Ralph Clark

on Service

To Capt Lieut Jas. Meridith

Marines

Friendship Transport

Clark to Lieut and Adjt. Long Marines




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Friendship Transport

Octr. the 15/87

Sir

I will be greatly obliged to You when Ever it is the Commanding Officers Pleasure to order the officers to assemble to enquir into the Grounds of my letter to Capt. Lieut Jas. Meredith of this day's date, to be so good also (with the Commanding officers permission) to order the undermentioned officers and Privates to attend at the same time

I am Sir

Your Most

Obdt. Humble Servt.

Ralph Clark

Capt. Lieut Jas. Meredith

1st. Lieut Robt. Kellow

1st. Lieut Thos. Davey

Marines

Mr. Consident

Mr. Arundell

Assistant Surgeon

Mr. Tholman

Scarborough

Willm. Godfrey

John Roberts

Willm. Hughes

Thos. Chipp

Marines Friendship

Willm. Hurn

Stuart of the Friendship

To

Lieut & Adjt. Long Marines

on H: M: Service    M: S: Sirius

Clark to Ross




  ― 255 ―

Friendship Transport

Oct. the 25, 1787

Table Bay

Cape of Good Hope

Sir

The four undermentioned names are those of the women convicts that have children on board here

I am Sir

Your Most Obdt. Servt

Ralph Clark

Lieut Mars.

         
Woman Names  Children Names 
Susanah Smith  Willm. Smith 
Elizabeth Pugh  Nancy Pugh 
Jane Parkenson  Edwd. Hughs 
Susanah Holms  Heny. Keable 

To Majr. Ross on board

H: M: Shipp Sirius

on Service

Clark to Gordon

Lieut Clark Compt. & best Respect to Coll: Gordon, hope the Badness of the weather Yesterday will apology for my not waiting on You According to promise.

Friendship Transport

Wednessday Morng. Octr. the 31/87

To Coll: Gordon

Citidal Good Hope

Clark to Ross




  ― 256 ―

Friendship

Novr. the 4, 1787

Sir,

As I am Quit a Stranger here and I wish to draw for a small Sume before we Sail, I shall be greatly obliged to you to put me in a Method where I can draw for it

I am Sir

Your Very Obliged

and Humble Servt.

Ralph Clark

To Majr. Ross

Clark to Kempster

Friendship Transport

Cape of good Hope

Novr. the 4, 1787

Dear Kempster

In the first place you must forgive the shortness of this letter, as I have but Just time to say that I am in great good health —— you will Say why So short a letter the reason is that I did not know that there was any Ship to Sail from or near this place to Europe but a friend of mine (Coll: Gordon) has Sent me off word that a Ship is to Sail tomorrow Morning from Sardinia Bay, about 40 miles from this —— the Comr. has also Sent word whose Boat is now waiting for this —— we arrived heer the 13th. of last month in company with all the fleet after a very fine Passaged of five weeks and five days —— we Burried only one child beloning to one of the convicts —— we are and have been Remarkable healthy —— I was in hopes to have had a letter from You by the Ranger Packet which put in heer for water from Falmouth in Augst. last Bound to Bengall in my next which will be in a few days, I will give you all the news, Creswell and Pouldon are removed into the Prince of Wales in the room of Maxwell and Timmins —— I can inform you for certain that Maxwell is not to land at Botany Bay but to come home on the first Transport or


  ― 257 ―
Ship that goes from ther —— the Quarter Master is Removed into the Alexander and ordered to take the command of the Detachment on board there —— I must conclude otherwise Shall not be able to Send it So god Bless you —— my best wishes to both Mrs. Kempster, Mr. & Mrs. Bedlake and all friends

am Yours very Sincerely

Ralph Clark

Tell my Betsey that I have Sent her also a few lines by the Same Conveyance which I hope She will Receive So Adieu

Clark to Hartwell

Friendship Transport

Cape of good Hope

Novr. the 8, 1787

Dr. Sir

I wrot You a few lines from Teneriff and Should have done the Same from Rio de Janario but as the Returns would come to the Division as Soon, as my letter to you which would answer the same, to aneable You to Receive from the Pay Master, my Subs. untill the date of the Said Returns, is my Reason for not writing you from there,

we arrived here in company with the whole fleet, the 13th. of last month, after a very fine Passaged of five weeks and five days fromnote we have been Remarkable healthy on board this Ship and are still having only lost one Male convict and a Young child beloning to one of the female dito Since leaving the mother Bank —— the whole fleet has been in short much more healthier than was or could have been Expected from the different climateds that the[y] have come throu having in the whole only Burried between thirty and forty, out of which thank God not a Single Marine —— we shall sail from appearences in Eight or ten days at farthest from this as the Cattle and stock for the use of the Settlement is putting on board the different Ships.

I shall I Believe have Occation to draw on You before I leave this, for about five Pounds, which if I should you will be so good as to honour my draft, when it is presented to you for payment —— I must also beg of you not to fail to pay my Insurance at the time appointed —— also to be so good as to send me by


  ― 258 ―
the first ship for Botany Bay Your Account and any news that you will favour me with —— I have wrot Mrs. Clark by this conveyance (a ship bound to Lisbon)

Capt. Shea, Lieuts. Kellow and Pouldon are all very well and join with me in wishing You health and welfare and am Dr. Sir

Your Most Obdt.

& Humble Servt.

Ralph Clark

P:S: I hope the News that the Ranger Packet (which Sail from Falmouth in Augst. last for Bengall which has put in heer for water) is true that of a War

To

Brod. Hartwell Esqr.

Georges Street

Plymh. Dock

Devon

Clark to Kempster

Friendship Transport

Cape of good Hope

Novr. the 8, 1787

Dear Kempster

According to Promise I cannot think of letting any opportunity Sliping that offers to send You a few lines my friend and as there is a Ship come in here Yesterday from Bengall to get some water and will Sail to morrow or next day for Lisbon by whome I send these few lines to inform you that I am Still thank God Blessed with that good companion health —— trust that this will find You and Your good family in the Same State —— I wrot You and My Betsey about five or Six days past by a Dutch Ship bound to Middleburgh —— I hope the letters which I sent You and Mrs. Clark a day or two before we saild from Rio de Janario under the cear of the Master of the Sirius that was have come by this time Save to hand —— I was a little disapointed the first of this month in not Receiving a letter from You by the Ranger Packett and more So in not having one from my old Woman —— She Saild from Falmouth in Augst. last and will Sail this day for Bengall —— I hope the Account which She brings as also from letters Received by her is true that of a War with France and Holland




  ― 259 ―

we arrived here the 13 of last month after a very fine Passaged of five weeks and five days from Rio in company with the whole fleet —— the Little Friendship has been Remarkable healthy having only Burried one Young child beloning to one of the female convicts —— the rest of the fleet has been much in the Same State except the Charlott and Alexander who were both getting very Sickly before we came in here, from there coming out of a very warm climate all at once into one very cold —— the Charlott lost one male convict over board on the Passaged and one woman died a day or two after we came in here —— the Alexander Burried one male convict that is all the deaths that have happened Since my last to you —— in the fleet Since our leaving England we have only Burried between thirty and forty and thank God not a Single man beloning to the Detachment in that number which is a much Smaller number than was or could have been Expected —— them that were Sickly before our Arrivall here are all got Quite well for never was Prisoner So much taking cear of than the[y] have been by the Commodor Since his first taking charge of them —— Since we came into this port the marines and convicts have had the same allowance (Spirits Excepted) a Pound of Beef or Mutton and a Pound and a half of Loaf Bread a day —— You will Say not bad allowance for convicts and as much Greens as the[y] can make use of in there Broth —— the[y] have been more treated like Children than Prisoners —— the[y] have behaved very well and Quite although the[y] had laid a plan on board the Alexander threw the assistance of three or four of the Seamen to have over Powerd the Guard on board and then taking the command of the Ship —— the Marines were the most Sickly then in the Ship but the[y] could not agree amonst themselves So that the matter came to the Knowledge of (Lieut John Johnstone then the commanding officer on board) by two of the convicts informing against the others —— the Seamen had Supplyd them with Iron crows and other different implements to assist them in there undertaking —— the[y] had cut throu and got at the Provisions & destroyed (eat) a great Quantity of bread, cheese & the Seamen the Commodor has taking on board of his own Ship but what he intends to doe with them I cannot Say but in my opinion the[y] ought to be tryd for there life Since there first coming on board of this ship the[y] have behaved exceedingly orderly —— thank God we have got Quite of the most trouble some Sett (the Women) and have Received 40 Sheep in there Room which I have not the least manner of doubt but we will find them much more agreable Ship mates than the (Ladys) were —— I never came a Cross Such a D…. Sett of B……. in all the course of my life than the[y] are —— the men cannot hold a candle to one of them & I am glad from the Bottom of my Soul that the[y] are gone for I was heartily tired of them —— in my last which I sent You a few days past by the dutchman for Middlebourgh I inform You that Creswell and Pouldon were Removed into the Prince of Wales and Maxwell and Timmins Removed in their room on board the Charlott —— the reason of this Removal was that the men had made complaint to Majr. Ross about some thing which I cannot get at but when the Majr. went on board to inquir


  ― 260 ―
into the Grounds of the complaint he found Maxwell so much (intoxicated) with liquor that he could not Give the Majr. an Answer to the Questions which were put to him —— from that and that which happened at Rio which I informd You of in my letter from there, the Majr. order him on board the Charlott and Creswell on board the P of W: and as Pouldon wished to be with Creswell he and Timmins changed —— Ross told him (Maxwell) that he thought the he had better apply to be Invalided for that he should not land with the detachment —— I find from the orders of last Sunday that he has done So —— Fuzer was orderd on Board the Alexander to take the command of the Detachment from J. Johnstone for between You and I, I am pretty certain Johnstone is superseded for much the same thing as what Maxwell is for Capt. Campble is gott Quite well again —— we have been classed to the different companys —— I Remain with Meridith by my own wish and with him I mess while we Remain at Botany —— I dont know with whome I shall be in a Tent with but Davey and I have agreed to be in one as we are in the Same company together —— Mr. Faddy and I had agreed to be and was to have been but from Some thing that happened the day after our Arrival here I could not think of being in a Tent with him —— I Believe You will here the circumstances throu Some other chanal which will appear much better than for me to releate them who is the Principle concerned although it is to a friend therfor will only inform You that from the nature of the curcumstance I was oblige to write for a Court Martial on myself (for it could not be settled as trivial points of honour are in General) which would have been held accordingly but for Several of my Brother officers who advised me for the Sake of his wife and children to let the matter be settled by three or four of them and not to have the court Martial which I at last agreed on as the[y] Seemd to wished it —— when the Commanding Officer order the following officers to assemble on board heer Capt. Lieut Tentch, 1st. Lieutenants Geoe. Johnstone, Creswell, Kellow, and Pouldon to settle it which the[y] did much to the satisfaction of Your friend but to apologise which Mr. F was obliged to Repeat Publickly (which they had wrot) Before them to me —— I dont think it will appear well in me to repeat although to You Kempster but I hope when You have herd the Particulars from a nother hand that you will tell me if you think that I have acted right in given up Several points on Account of his Young family —— in my next which will be before we leave this I will Send You all the news and the orders of last Sunday —— this is the most dearest place that I ever was in without Exception nothing is cheap except china and Mutton at 2½ pence a lb —— I wish that we were gone which will be in five days at most as all the Publick stock and cattle is nearly on board the different Ships —— be So good as to not let Mrs. Clark forget to Send out the things which I wrot for from Rio and ½ a hundred wight of Shot No.3 as I have got none of that Sort I find —— let it be send out in the first Ship that comes with the other things —— Adieu my friend —— make my Best wishs to Mrs. K and to Your Mother —— Kisses to the little ones —— Compt. to Bedlake and his good woman —— I may as


  ― 261 ―
well add a merry christmas and a happy New Year to all for it will be that before this comes to your hand

Your Very Sinceerly friend

Ralph Clark

Tell my Betsey that I have wrot her by this opportunity the woman that died on board the Charlott is Cook the drummers wife

Marine Camp to Collins

Lieut. Clarks Compt. & Best Respects to Capt. Collins begs to inform you that Jas. Tennehill a Convict now a Prisoner in charge of the Quarter Guard has beg of me to Speak to You Respecting his behaviour while on board the Friendship Transport —— if his good behaviour (in the Unhappy Situation he then was while on board the above Transport) can have any wight in Mitigating the Punishment that may be inflicted for the Crime for which he now Stands Charge with I can only Say on his behalf that for these last Nine Months past, that he behaved himself Remarkably peaceably and obedient alwayse to Command

Marine Camp

Tuesday Morning

Feby. the 11/88

To D: Collins Esqr.

Albion

Clark to Ross

Camp Sydney Cove

Port Jackson

June 22, 1788

Sir

I Shall esteem it a particular favour to doe me the honour by applying to the Right Honble. my Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty for to be Relieved at the Expiration of the three Years or as Soon after as there Lordships Shall find


  ― 262 ―
Convenient and be permited to Return to England as a longer Stay in this Country will be very Engerous to my Private affairs

I am with the greatest Respect

Sir Your Most Obdt.

Humble Servt.

Ralph Clark

2d. Lieut. Mars

To Major Ross Commandant

of the Battalion of Marines

Port Jackson

Clark to Kempster

Marine Camp Sydey Cove

Port Jackson

New South Wales

New Holland

July 10 [1788]

Dear Kempster

I with pleasure embrace this opportunity that of Lieut Collins who goes home for the Recovery of his health to inform You my friend that I never was better in health in my life —— I wish that I could here that you and your good family are the Same —— George You must not expect to have an Minuet Account of the Country and our Situation here from me for which I Shall Refer you to [*] the Publick and private accounts which goes home by this opportunity which you will See in the papers I shall only tell you that this is the poorest country in the world, which its inhabitance shows the[y] are the most miserable set of wretchs under the Sun —— we left the cape the 12 of Novr. and Arrived at Botany bay the 19 of Jany. which we left with the whole fleet the 26 of the Same and arrived here the Same day —— the reason for our leaving Botany was on Account of there being no fresh water Sufficient to be found for the Settlement, nor is there any great quantity here, although this is one of the finest harbours in the world but there is neather river or Spring in the country that we have been able to find or meet with —— all the fresh water comes out of large Swamps which the country abounds with —— the country is over run with large trees not one Acre of clear ground to be


  ― 263 ―
Seen nor is ther one tree out of fifty but what is burnt with the lightning nor nothing in it fitt for the Subsistance of man what with Earthquakes, thunder and lightning it is to be sure a Sweet Country —— the Tunder and Lightning is the most Terrible I ever herd, it is the oppinion of every body here that Goverment will remove the Settlement to Some other place for if it remains here this country will not be able to maintain its self in one hundred Years for with all the Marines and Convicts here we have not been able to clear more Ground than what we are now putting in as fast as possible —— the Convicts behave very bad —— Several of them have been hangd and Several more will goe the Same way Soon for there is hardly a night but Some robbery is committed —— I am Sorry to Say that Majr. Ross and the Govr. are not on the best of terms nor is the former with Several of use, he is, without exception the most disagreable commanding officer I ever know —— him and I are as Yet on very good terms —— Ross put the following officers under an Arest Capt. Tench, Lieuts. Kellow, Pouldon, Davey and Timins (the former President and and the others Members of a Court Martial) for there refusing to alter the Sentance of the court which the[y] had past one the prisoner which Ross thought was tending to the Subservient of all order and Military Discipline —— after he had orderd them to revise the Court three times and the[y] not willing to alter the Sentance which was that the Prisoner (a private brought to tryal for Stricking a nother private) Should publickly beg pardon of the Said private which he had Struck OR receive one hunder lashes which was leaving the punishment in the hands of the prisoner —— when he found that the court would not alter the word or he put them under ane Arest for disobedience of orders and wrot for a Genl. Court Martial on them which could not be granted —— the reasons for which See the Genl. orders on the other Side which I have Sent you and you will be better able to Judge of the matter

The Major Commandant of the Detachment doing duty in the Settlement having by letter dated the 21st. Inst. Reported the following officers under an Arest Viz Capt. Lieut Watkin Tench, 1st. Lieuts. Robt. Kellow, Jno. Pouldon, Thos. Davey and Thos. Timins —— the first is President and the others are Members of a Court Martial, which he orderd to assemble on the 18 Inst. for the Tryal of Private beloning to the Detachment —— the Said Court having in his oppinion Passed a Sentence which tends to the Subversion of all Military Discipline and Requesting that a General Court Martial may be orderd to assemble for the Tryal of the afore Said Officers for Refusing to make any alteration in the Said Sentence or that it might be Settled in any manner most likly to Restore Harmony and Support that Military Disciplin & Good Order which is So absolutely necessary to be maintaind

The Officers Under Arest having declined the propossion made of Submitting the determination of this affair to any number of officers and having informd the Judge Advocate who had orders to propose that or any other mode of Setteling this matter without a General Court Martial that they being put Under Arest by their Commandant did not Concieve that any thing less than a Legal


  ― 264 ―
Division by a General Court Martial or a Public Reparation from their Commandant Could clear their Character

The Service dose not at this moment permit a General Court Martial to be assembled

The officers composing the Detachment being (exclusive the five officers Under Arest) no more than three Captains and [*] Subalterns one of which is confined to his Bed by Sickness which Reduces the number of officers in this Settlement Eligible to Sit on this Occasion to thirteen consequaintly that not leaving any one officer for Duty

It is therfore Orderd that the Minuets of the Tryal of the a for said Private Soldier with the Letters that there Past on the Occation between the Court and the Commandant of the Detachment be deliverd to the Judge Advocate that when the Service permits by being a Sufficient number of officers to form a General Court Martial and for the necessary duty of the Camp, a General Court Martial May be then held on the Said Capt. Lieut Watkin Tench, 1st. Lieuts. Robt. Kellow, John Pouldon, Thos. Davey and Thos. Timins if Such Genl. Court Martial Shall be then Requestd by eather of the Parties

The officers now under Arest to Return to their Duty

From the above I hope that You will be able to see into the affair and Wm. Collins will give you every information otherwise about it and every other thing which you may wish to ask him —— Kellow had not Returnd many days to his duty before he again was put under an arest by Ross for leaving his Gd. which Matter was made up —— Little John Ross is on the returns as a Vollr. without pay —— almost every officer with my self have wrot to be relievd at the Expiration of the three Years for by God I would not Stay longer than I could help in this country if the[y] would give me a Captains Commission —— duty is much harder here we Seldom have more than two nights in bed which is much harder duty than any Officers have in the British Army in time of war —— it is not only the Camp duty but the worst duty is the duty of Sitting as Members of the Criminal Court which is a very disagreable duty which is the Court which tries the Seamen eather beloning to the Ships of War or Merchant men and the Convicts which duty comes very often —— I hope that I never will Sit again for I would reather be on Gd. for a Month than to Sitt on the tryal of these poor wretches —— the day that we left Botany Bay there came in two Strange Ship which not a little Surprized every body for we as Soon Expected to See St. Paul coming in to the Bay as two Strange Ships —— we found them to be two french Ships on Discoveries, Le Boussole, Monsr. La Perouse, Commodore and Astrolabe, Monsr. Clonard out from france near two Years —— the[y] came to Botany to sett up two Long Boats in the room of two which the[y] had lost at one of the islands of the Northwest Coast of America in a Scuffle with the Natives with thirty of there men and one of ther Captains was killed at the Same time —— his name was Monsr. de Langle, he commanded the Astrolabe ——


  ― 265 ―
the[y] Staid at Botany near two Months and we often went over to them and the[y] came in Return over to use it being not a bove Seven miles by land and about 9 by Sea —— Soon after we came here the Supply Saild for Norfolk island with about thirty of the convict men and women to Settle there and Lieut. King of the Sirius as Gover. —— the Supply in her being there found out ane Island which had never been discovd. in the Latte. of 31:40 South Longd. 159.04 East which Lieut Ball cald Lord Howes Island in honour of the first Lord of the Admlty. —— no inhabitance nor no fresh water to be found Except what comes from the heavens nor any good Anchorage in the Summer —— a great Quantity of Turtle comes there of which the[y] brought a great number away with him —— he Since has being gone again but found none the weather being grown too cold the[y] having gone father to the northward —— the Supply Sail at the Same time there Ship goes for England for Norfolk —— I hope he will bring in Some turtle with him for it is hard to have nothing but Salt Beef to eat every day —— the Kankerrous are very plentifull but hard to come at —— a great number have been Shot and are very good eating —— You may expect to have a Skin of one of them Stuft by the next Ship that Sail from here —— the crows goes down the Same as a Barn dove foul in England —— nothing goes a miss here Snakes and Lisards are become good eating but these I cannot yet to bring myself to Stomack but as for Crows, Parrets, haws and every kind of birds let them feed on carion or any thing else for the[y] are better than Salt Beef —— the Detachment lost only one Man on the passaged and have Burried three Since we have been landed —— about forty of the Convicts have died I am not Surprised at there dying So fast the[y] have nothing to lay on but the cold grownd ther being no beds come out for them —— the Scurvy has got much amonst our men as well as amonst the Convicts —— the flux carried of a great number Soon after our coming here but there is a red Gum found here of a great astringen nature which the Surgeons have give with great Success in the flux —— Maxwell goes hom by this opportunity he has done no duty Since we left the Cape —— Geoe. Johnston is appointed the Govr. Adjt. of orders and is taking of the Strength of the Detachment and lives with the Govr. —— Dawes is joind the Detachment but dose no duty being appointed Artillery Officer and Engineer —— these are the only appointments that have taking place —— Ross writes by this convayance for the mens Subsistance being Sent out to them and for a pay Master being appointed —— be so good as tonote that is all the News that I have —— I hope your goodness will Excuse the irregularness of this letter but as I am getting the roof of my hut plasterd for which I am grasping every fair moment that offers for it has raind for near this month with hardly a Single days interrupion —— that I hope my good friend will plead a Sufficient Excuse for the the loose order in which I have wrot you —— the next I hope will not be in So irregular a maner —— I have now to desire you to Make my Kindest wishes to Mrs. Kempster your good woman and also to your Mother and a thousand Blessings to the little ones —— Compt. to Bedelake and his good woman and my


  ― 266 ―
Sinceerest Love to my Betsey —— inform Reynolds that I have wrot him a few lines —— adieu my good fellow health and happiness for you and yours is the daily wish of your

Very Sinceer friend

Ralph Clark

note

be so good as to inform Mrs. Clark that I have Sent under the Care of Collins a Box for her and a long letter —— dont forget to send me all the newspapers which you promised you would also any Magazines which you can Spair for the inhabitance of this place dont print any Such things —— all good news will be Acceptable, adieu

Yr. R C

Send me out a [best of the donations?] at the Same time

To

Lieut & Qr. Master Kempster

Marines

Plymouth

Clark to Hartwell

Marine Camp Sydney Cove

Port Jackson

New South Wales

July 12th/88

Dr. Sir

it is with pleasure that I have an opportunity to inform You that I am in good health although in the poorest country in the World without Exception —— I Shall be happy when the three Years are over and the Relief come out for which I have wrot for to be at the Exparation at that time as has almost every officer done the Same —— I Should with pleasure have given you ane Account of the Country and our Situation but which I Suppose you will Receive from Some much abler friend as well as by the publick and other private Accounts which goes by the Same Conveyance —— it is the oppinion of every body here that the Settlement will be Removed to Some other place for its is not possible that this place can mentain its Self in a Centry (if corn would come to perfection which its much fear it will not) for the whole face of the Country is So over grown with immense large trees So much So that not a Quarter of an Acre of clear ground is to be Seen nor is there


  ― 267 ―
eather River or Spring to be mett with Yet or any thing in it fitt for the Subsistance of Men Except for its poor wretchd Inhabitance who live on limpets and fern roots —— the Natives are very Numerous and are begining to be very troublesome —— Several of the Convicts have been Kild by them —— not one of them has come into the Camps Yet —— the Bearer of this Lieut Wm. Collins who goes home for the Recovery of his health of Whome I have bought Some things for the payment of which he will give you my Bill on You to the amount of £5–17–6 Sterling which you will be so good as to pay and to give Mr. C about ten pounds to purchase Some things which I shall want by the first Ship —— I have also to to beg of you to be so good when the Relief comes out to send me a Bill for £20 or 25 pound in favour of your Correspondent in [Cape] Town as I Shall want to purchas Some things at the Cape and if there is any thing which I can doe for you or your friends at any of the places we may Stop at in our way home you have only to Command Dr. Sir

Your

Most Obdt. Humble

Servt

Ralph Clark

Shea, Pouldon, Kellow are in great good health

To.

B: Hartwell Esqr.

Clark to Reynolds

Marine Camp Sydney Cove

Port Jackson

New South Wales

New Holland

July 20th/88

Dear Reynolds

Accept these few lines from Your friend who is now in one of the Worst Countries in the World although I can inform You Chas. I never was Better in health in my life —— I would give a great dele to here that You and the rest of my friends in Your part of the World are the Same —— in the first place I [beg] of You to Excuse the Shortness of this that I am going to send you for I am So hard at work in


  ― 268 ―
the day time about my hut and having hardly any clandle light about use I hope will plead a Sufficient Excuse for its Shortness —— I wish to god that I was again back to Plymouth as for which I never in all the course of my life wished for any thing So much as I doe for that for by God there is nothing in this Country to make a man wish to Stay as I have Said already it is the poorest Country under heaven without Exception of which I will leave You to Judge of by what follows —— one of the Convicts having about a Month Since Committed a Crime for which has was Certain he would be hanged for he therfore run away in the Country to avoid the Gallows but in three weeks time he was glad to come back to it again prefairing it to being Starved to death which must have been the case had he Staid out a few days longer for not having met with in the track of Country which he went over any thing which afforded the least Subsistance to man he having lived on nothing the whole time he was away but limpets and other Shell fish which he found on the Sea Shore —— what with Earthquakes, thunder and lightning which is the most terrible I ever herd in all my life it is you will think not a disireable Country to Stay in —— I have wrote for to be Relieved at the Expiration of the three Years as has every officer almost done the Same —— I am Sorry to Say that the Govr. and Majr. Ross are not on very good terms or is the latter with Several of use —— Maxwell and Collins goes home by this opportunity the former has done no duty Since we left the Cape from which I wrot You and the latter for the Recovery of his health —— I have wrot Kempster and my Betsey by this Conveyance which I hope will come Save to their hands —— the Detachment has lost 4 men Since we left England one at Sea and three Since we have been here —— Now I have to beg of you to be so good as to make my Compt. to Kempster, Bedelake and families and Tendrest wishes to my Betsey and Son —— doe Reynolds Send me all the news paper that you can and all the news and you will much oblige your very

Sinceer friend

Ralph Clark

be so good as to make Lieut Balls of the Supply and Capt. D. Collins Compt. to Kempster which I forgot to Mention in his letter —— Creswell and Pouldon desires there best wishes to You when I write you again (which will not be long) I will make up for the Shortness of this by Sending you a long one —— [a] dieu dont forget me to my Betsey —— Compt. and Best wishes to D: Price

To

Lieut Reynolds

M: S: Druid

Plymouth

Clark to Collins




  ― 269 ―

Sydney Cove

Port Jackson

Sept. 30th 1788

My Dr. friend,

Directed by friendship, I cannot think of letting the Sirius goe to the Cape without writing these few lines by her and trust that the[y] will find, you my good fellow, in good health, for believe me Collins few things are predominant with me than to heer of the health and welfare of you my friend

As for news, I have not much to inform you, we are being much in the Same State as when You left use, nor are we likely to be soon any otherwise, except of being much more disperced up and down the Country, for a Detachment consisting of one Capt. 2 Subt. 2 Sergt. 2 Corpl. one Drumr. and 20 Privates is order to hold themselves in readeness to proceed up to the head of the harbour in a few days with 70 Convicts there to form a Settlement —— this detachment is to be Relieved every three months —— the officers on the Rosster first for detachd duty are Capt. Campble, Lieuts. J: Johnstone and Shearp —— I am Sorry to Say Wm. that the Seeds of animosity is budding out very fast amonst the Juniors as well as it was amonst the Seniors before you left use, for the 12th. of last Month the P. of Wales's Birthday The Govr. in honour of the day gave a dinner to every Gentleman in the Settlement and Seemd to enjoy our Selves much more than we did the 4th. of June but White and Balmain in the Evening in course of Conversation Quarled about Some duty and the[y] went out in the Middle of the night to decid it with pistols without any Seconds —— the report of the pistols alarmd the Guards for before the patroles could come up with them the[y] had each fired five rounds without doing any Material injury to each other —— Balmain received a Small flesh wound in the Right thigh a little above the Knee —— It would not have rested there had not the Govr. taking the matter in hand and Convinced the two Sons of Escalipious that it was much better to draw Blood with the point of there lance from the Arm of there patients than to doe it with pistol Balls from each other —— Long & White has also within these few days had Some words and would have been Settle in the Same manner (with pistols) had not friends interfered who convinced White that he was in the wrong but if I am not Mistaking this matter is only Settled for the present and the Smales Spark on eather Side will make it breack out a fresh —— dont be Surprized what I am going to inform you —— what doe you think of Ross and Campble having Quarled and Carried matters in to Such a hight that the[y] parted Messes and past each other without Speaking except on duty —— the[y] have come to Speak again but not Yet to mess again —— all this happend about a Servant of Campbles —— it would have been a happy thing for use if this breach had Continued




  ― 270 ―

The Golden Grove Store Ship Sails for Norfolk the Same time this goes for you with ane addition to the Settlement there of one Sergt. one Corpl. and five Privates (Beloning to the Sirius) 20 male and 10 famele Convicts with a twelf months provisions of every piece for them and the others that are there before them, that is all the News

Your Brother is very well and desires his Brotherly love to You —— also the best wishes of ane affectiond Son to his father and Mother to whome You will Remember me most Kindly as one who is So much indebted to them for the Kind attention to Mrs. Clark and Self while in the Barracks —— Pouldon is very well and Joins with me in the Most friendly Wishes for Your health and welfare and I Remain My

Dr. friend

Your Most Sinceer

Ralph Clark

P:S: if this Should find You at the Cape as it is the Genl. opinion it will I will thank you much Collins to be So good as to Send me the undermentiond things by the Sirius as You promised you would,

Viz: 6 or 8 lb of Tea, about 40 or 50 lb of Sugar, 6 lb of Pepper, 2 pices of printed Cotton at about 3 or 4 Dollars a pice for window Curtains and a dozen the Same Kind of plates as You gave me and let me me know what the cost and I will Send you ane order for the Same —— be So good as to make my best and tendrest wishes to Mrs. Clark and inform her that I have wrote her by this opportunity as also Kempster —— all the Detachment have applayd to be Relieved at the exparation of the three Years Except Tench, G: and J: Johnstone and Shearp and three or four of the Private Men, adieu R:C:

To

Lieut Wm. Collins

Marine Barracks

Plymouth

Clark to Hartwell




  ― 271 ―

Sydney Cove

Port Jackson

N. South Wales

Octr. the 1st. 1788

Dr. Sir

I take this opportunity of the Sirius going to the Cape of Good hope for provisions (flouer) of which Article we will Soon be in want off —— as for news there is none heer we being much in the Same State as when I wrote You last July last by Lieut. Wm. Collins —— the Battalion is not got hutted Yet and it will be Some time before the[y] are the timber being So rotten —— not one tree out of fifty but what is decayd —— a detachment consisting of one Capt. 2 Subt. 4 Non Commd. officers one Dr. and 20 Privates goes up to the head of the harbour about 20 miles from this with 70 of the convicts to form a nother Settlement there —— the Golden Grove Store Ship Sails to Morrow for Norfolk with one Sergt. and five Privates 20 male and 10 famele Convicts in addition to the Number that was sent there Soon after our landing here —— it is a very pretty Island and abounds in fish and Turtle both of which we are in want of heer —— the former we cannot get for the want of Boats and the latter dont come so fare to the Southward as this —— we are Remarkably healthy heer —— the whole Battalion has applayd to be Relieved at the Exparation of the three Years —— Capt. Tench, Lieuts. G: and J: Johnstone and Shearp and four Private men Excepted —— in my letter to You by Lieut. Collins I mentioned for you to Send me when the Relief comes out a Bill for 20 or 25 pounds which I heer again beg of you to be So good as also if there is any thing which I can doe for you at the Cape or any other place we may Stop at in our way home I will doe it with pleasure —— Shea, Pouldon and Kellow are very well and Join with me in best wishes for your health and welfare and Remain Dr. Sir

Your Most Obdt. Humble

Servt.

Ralph Clark

P:S: the Natives have never Yet come into Camp but are ready to attack the Convicts in the woods when ever the[y] think the[y] can get the better of them but the[y] never Meddle with a red Coat —— I have wrote Mrs. Clark by this opportunity

To

B: Hartwell Esqr.

Plymth. Docks

Clark to Kempster




  ― 272 ―

Camp Sydney Cove

Port Jackson

New South Wales

Novr. 17th. 1788

Dr. Kempster

I wrot You about Six weeks Since by the Sirius every thing worth Relating Since which time nothing Material has happend we being much in the Same State as then except that Furzer was put under Arrest by Ross for Neglect of duty, Disobedience of orders and contempt to his Commanding officer —— a Genl. Court Martial was order'd to assemble to try him for the Same —— the officers who were directed to assemble for the purpose of holding the Said Genl. Court Martial were of opinion that they could not Sit for that purpose under the Warrant of the Govr. for that by the Act of Parliament no other Power than the Admiralty is Authorised to grant a warrant for holding (Marine) Genl. Court Martial —— the Judge Advocate who is appointed by the Admiralty is instructed in their warrant to keep the Act of Parliament constanly for his Rule —— Under these curcumstances and considerations the Reason of our not Sitting according to orders we stated to Majr. Ross and hoping the Statement may be transmited to the Admlty. from whome we hope such remedy will be applied as their Lordships may think expedent

Dr. Kempster as being one of the officers ordered to assemble for the holding of the above Court Martial I feel myself placed in a very unpleasent Situation in not being able to conform to the Gover. Warrant without taking a fals Oath for the Govr. Sent use his Commission Issued from his Majesty Empowering the Said Govr. in Chief to assemble Genl. Court Martials for the Trial of any Officer or Soldier of the Troops under his Command & to confirm or Set aside their Sentence —— I hope therfore that we may be understood in this Business by His Majesty that we have Acted only in conformity to an Act of the British Legislature passed Expressely for our Regulations (Marines) while on Shore in any part of His Majys. Dominions & that we have not in any Shape been wanting in the Respect that belongs to the High Authority of His Majestys Commission or to the Officer invested with it in this Country

I wonder that ther was no Provision or alteration made in the Usual Act of Parliament for the Regulation for the Marine Forces, while on Shore, for our particular Situation heer, the Same, as in the Year 1775, for that part of the Corps as was doing duty in America withe the Army (the two Battalions) the[y] were Guided and directed by the Articles of War of the Army as the[y] were included in the Act for the Punishment of Mutiny and desertion amonst the Troops in that country —— an Act of this Kind ought to have been made for our particular Situation and


  ― 273 ―
not have Sent use out without any Guidance for the Trial of any Officer, or Soldier, by a Genl. Court M. —— Ross when he found that a General Court Martial could not Sit, he got the Govr. to order a Court of Enquiry on Furzer, to enquire into the Charge brought against him by his Commanding Officer and to Report whether there was not Sufficient grounds for a Court Martial —— the Court of Enquiry without Calling on Ross or Furzer were of opinion that the order for a Genl. C: M: alwaise confirmed that ther was Sufficient grounds for a C: M: —— Ross then got the Govr. to Send Furzer home to be tryd there (the Prosecuter and witnesses to have been Examined on Oath by the Judge Advocate here) if he did not make the matter up with him when in the course of a few days after the following order Came out Viz: The Majr. Commandant of the detachment having Represented that Quarter Master Jas. Furzer having taking the Necessary Steps to doe away the charge for which a Genl. Court Martial was orderd and Request that further proceedings may Stopt that Officer is to Return to his duty, but what Steps he took to took to doe away the charge I am a Stranger to So here this matter ended

Capt. Campble and Shairp are not gone up to the new Settlement Yet as I informd you the[y] would in a few days in my last —— Lieut J: Johnstone has been gone for these three weeks past with part of the Detachment that is orderd to goe and the half of the 70 Convicts that are to goe —— Capt. Campble and Shairp with the Remainder will goe in about a week —— I am affraid that corn will not Answer for the Lightning blights the moment that it comes above ground —— at the Govr. farm there is Some very forward and appears to come on very fast and thats the only in the Country —— Gardin Stuff grows very well but the Cabbages will not form —— the Account that the Golden Grove Store Ship brings from Norfolk Island are very favorable —— corn and every thing that the[y] Sow grows Remarkably well but it is a very bad place for a Ship —— the Grove while She Remaind there was obliged to goe to sea three times or goe on Shore there being constantly a great Sea rolling in the Road where a Ship can only Anchor —— Several of the convicts here have been again Kild by the Natives as we Suppose one of our men is also as he has been Missing above three weeks past —— they are a Set of Savage Rascals for they will take the Advantage of the defencesles where the[y] can Such of the convicts that the[y] meet in the woods but as for a Red Coat the[y] will not come near them upon no Account what ever the[y] are So much affraid of fire Arms —— we are Remarkably healthy having no Sick of any Consequence to Speak off —— Capt. Meredith has been very ill but is now getting better fast although he is obliged to goe on cruches —— Ross behaves to use much in the Same Stile as he has done al along and is much on the Same footing with the Govr. as when I wrot You by Collins —— Capt. Campble and him are linct as close as ever again —— I though there Quarrel would not last long —— as this will be the last letter that you will Recieve from me for Some time as there will be no opportunity before a Ship arrives from England to write but by her Return I therfore hope that the Relief will not be fare from use before we can


  ― 274 ―
Recieve Answers to our letters which we Send by her, the first Ship that Sails after this —— if there is any thing that I can doe for you or your friends at any of the places we may Stop at in our way home I will with pleasure —— make my best wishes to Mrs. K and your Mother as also to Bedlake and his good woman —— adieu my good fellow may every Guardian Angle watch over you and Yours is the Sinceerest wishes of your

Affectioned friend

Ralph Clark

P:S: be So good as to make my best wishes and Compt. to all enquiring friends also be so good as to inform my Betsey that I have wrot her by both Ships as you will See —— my blessings to your little ones —— I Suppose that Geoe. is grown a fine fellow by this time —— inform Reynolds that I have Sent him a few lines —— Lieut Ball of the Supply and D. Collins best wishes to you

Clark to Reynolds

Camp Sydney Cove

Port Jackson

New South Wales

Novr. 17th. 1788.

Dear Reynolds,

As I wrote You by the Sirius the first of last month a long letter and every thing worth information Since which time nothing new or noval has happend worth Troubling my friends with —— I should not have wrot you now, for letters are an idle expense when one has nothing new to inform or useful to comunicate —— I know you So well that if I did not write you every opportunity you would take it unkind —— I enjoy my good fellow that great blessing of being in health —— I hope that it is your constant companion also —— Since my last Furzer was put under arrest by Ross which as I have wrot Kempster he will give you every thing Relating to it —— that is the only thing that has happend amonst use —— we are the most Unsociable Set that ever was —— there is no Society in this little place every body appears to me to be [*] of each other —— I assure you that I am not [*] of any body I never was so Sick of any thing in my life as I am of this Settlement —— no woman ever longed So eagerly for any thing as I doe for the Relief to come out for I ardently wish to be back again —— if I was a woman and with child I am Certain the child would be marked all over with Plymo. Dock, Stone House and the Marine Barracks —— we are remarkably healthy it is without doubt a very healthy Climate this but by God a Damed poor one —— in the last letter which I had before


  ― 275 ―
we left the mother bank you Seem to hint in it Some thing about Charlotte Baker as if you was paying your Addresses to her —— Since I can Speak freely to you as a friend you most Know that She has no fortune (except if you call a prety face one) and if you intend to make her Mrs. R:s you will find it cursetly hard to your Subns. pay mentain you both and perhaps a number of children into the bargain —— I find it very hard to make my pay mentain me who has got I can Savely Say one of the best and most prudent woman under heaven —— therfore my good fellow consider well before you enter into the Matrimonial State —— wigh every Circumstance first in the Scale of prudence after which Should you find any balance in your favour to enter into that State doe it by all means for I assure you it is the happiest State in the World —— let me Know Reynolds know every thing how goe on in this matter and every thing else respecting you Since my leaving England for Believe me few things are predominant with me but for the health and welfare of you my friend —— be So good as to inform or let my beloved wife Know that I have wrot her by both Ships —— I have wrot Kempster also if there doe anything (after that we are Relieved) for you or your friends at the places we may Stop at in our Way home I will doe it with pleasure you therefore have only to mention it to

Yr. Sinceer friend

Ralph Clark

P:S: be So good as to make my best to all friends my best wishes to Kempster, Bedlake and all their good families —— dont forget to Send me all the news and news papers that you can from the time of our Sailing if you can —— Creswell, Pouldon are very well and begs to be Remembert to you with there best wishes Adieu once more

To

Lieut Chas. Reynolds

Marine Barracks

Plymouth

Clark to Hartwell

Camp Sydney Cove

Port Jackson

New South Wales

Novr. 1788

Dr. Sir

I wrot You by the Sirius the first of last month Since which nothing heer worth information has happend we being much in the Same State as when the Sirius


  ― 276 ―
left use —— as I informd you then that a Settlement was intended at the head of the harbour and that a Detachment of 20 Marines and 70 Convicts from heer was intended for the Same, part of the above detachment have been gone about three weeks and the Remainder will follow in the course of a few days —— we are Still very healthy and at Norfolk Island the[y] are the Same —— the Accounts by the Golden Grove from there are very favourable, corn and every Kind of Seeds grows remarkably well the Soil being much better than it is heer for it is Still the Genl. opinion here that the corn will not come to perfection —— Majr. Ross has got a little at his farm that appears favourable and that is the only in the Island —— the Golden Grove in ther Return from Norfolk discoverd a Reef of Rocks about 100 miles to the Northward of Lord Howes Island —— as it will be some time before I shall have ane apportunity to write you again I trust you will be so good as to comply with my wishes in my letter to you which I sent by Lieut Collins and that by the Sirius —— Shea, Pouldon, Kellow, &c. as I Suppose that they will write you will find by them that the[y] are very well —— be so good as to inform Mrs. Clark that I have wrot her by both Ships —— when you write I will thank You for any little news which You may think worth Sending

am with the Sinceerest wishes for the the health and welfare of You and family Dr. Sir

Yr. Most Obdt. Servt.

Ralph Clark

P:S: Since my last Several of the convicts have been Kild by the Natives at Botany bay and one of our men is Supposed to have Shard the fate as he has been Missing above three weeks

To

B Hartwell Esqr.

Georges Street

Plymouth Dock

Collins to Clark

Cape of Good Hope

Feby. 19, 1789

Dear Clark

I have just time to Say I arrived here the 17 Inst and did not Receive your letter untill this day —— I Sail tomorrow or next day for Europe and have it not in my power to Send you the things you wrote for a[s] I draw for very little money

I have not time to answer your letter fully but believe me

Sincerly Your friend

Wm. Collins

Wolrige to Clark




  ― 277 ―

Sir

It is with very great Concern I Acquaint You of the death of our late Valuable Friend Mr. Hartwell on the 18th. of last month —— His Executors feeling for the distress Mrs. Clark might experience from this unhappy Event are willing to continued to furnish Her with Money Waiting for their Reimbursment till the Return of the inclosed Letter of Attorney which we conclude You will readily Execute and Send by the first Conveyance either to Mrs. Geoe. Hartwell of the Navy office or myself who are joint Executors to the deceased —— You are Debter to the late Mr. Hartwell £76.11.6 and as we continue to Supply Mrs. Clark we take it for granted no Drafts of Yours will appear

I am Sir

Your Most obdt. Servt.

Thos. Wolrige

Pay Office

Plymh.

1st Decr. 1789

NB The Blanks in Lettr. Atty. to be filled up at the time of Execution & witnessed by two Persons

Kempster to Clark

Stone House

Decr. 1st. 1789

Dear Clark

I hope you Received my Letter by the Guardian and the cask with what you wrote for as the Ship did not call here I was obliged to Send it to Portsmouth

Your wife and Boy are both well but by your Agent Hartwells death She is thrown on the Mercy of his Brother who takes to his affairs and as they have Reduced her allowance to £20 per annum but do not let that make you uneasy as hitherto She has contrived to keep out of Debt but what money She want I will be her Banker and you must pay me when you come home —— but this you will keep to yourself as not any person here knows it —— to be poor and appear so is the worst of all Evils and therfore I advised her to keep it to herself




  ― 278 ―

However I should Suppose Hartwells death will be one advantage to You —— it will Save the nine Pounds a Year which he paid for insuring Your life —— you will no doubt be surprized to see Nepean come out as Eldest Captain in the Corps destined for the Security of New South Wales —— I am told you will all be offerd Commissions in it —— by all I mean the Senior officers have for another Years residence in New South Wales may have changed your opinions of the place I know not or how for it will be adviseable for any of you to goe into the Corps —— you will get an immediate Step of cours but the question is will not that be the last promotion you are to look for unless you can purchase

As you will hear all the news from Capt. Nepean a long letter from me will be quite unnecessary —— be assured I shall be alwayse willing to Serve you and am

Your Sinceer friend

G. Kempster

All my family are well and desire there best wishes —— You will write me if you have any opportunity before you Return

Beveridge to Clark

Dear Sir

though I have not had the pleasure of Seeing you for some years past Yet I have heard from your friend Miss Hume of your welfare & it will give me much Satisfaction to have it Confirmed from Yourself my Address is at Messrs. Innes Beveridge & Co. London & if I can be of any Service to You Here I will be very happy

I take the liberty of introducing to Your Friendship & Acquaintance Mr. William Murray Surgeon of the Justinian Store Ship —— I beg you will Show Him any Civilities during his Stay with you & I hope you will find him worthy of your Protection

I am with best wishes for your welfare & Happiness

Dear Sir

Your Obdt. Hble. Servt.

James Beveridge

London

18th Decemr. 1789

Clark to Collins




  ― 279 ―

Marine Quarters

Sydney Cove

Feby. 9th. 1790

Sir

I have to Acquaint you that the Iron pot which was Served out from the Commissiary by order of the Governour was Stole from my Servants hutt last Tuesday the 9 Inst.

I am Sir

Your Obdt. Servt.

Ralph Clark

Lieut Mars.

To D: Collins Esqr.

Sydney Cove

Campbell to Clark

[Early July 1790]

Dear Clark

You would have heard from me by the Supply if she called at Norfolk in Answer to your kind letter but that I Really had not one moment to myself from the hour She arrived till She Sailed again and I will know that Majr. Ross would make you acquainted with every thing worth your notice Said to him from this place

I know that it will give you no Small degree of pleasure to hear that a part of the new Corps raised to Relieve us joined us in the last Transports and we daily look for the remaining part on board the Gorgon which Ship we are to take our passage home in —— god send us a speady Sight of her that we may all once more meet for She is to be sent for you as soon as the others are got out of her

You will I dar say expect me to Say Something of my own Situation here to you and it is but little I can Say more than that I am well as to other matters I go on just as you left me equally a Stranger to every body and every thing going on here except what immediately concerns myself




  ― 280 ―

You will learn from Major Ross how much we have all Suffered from the loss of the Guardian —— all the letters which were to me from the Governor for you and those with you Saved from her as well as the other letters that I could find I have put up in a packet with Majr. Ross's who will deliver them to You

I am much obliged to Consendent for his Remembrance of me —— Pray offer my best wishes as well as to the Rest of my friends

My heart Ackes to think how much you have all Suffered Should you not have Saved the Provisions which were on board the Sirius

Adieu my good friend and believe me to be as I Really am

Very much Yours

Jas. Campbell

Clark to Kellow

Sir

Your Servant has this moment informed me that you would be glad to Speak to Me —— I beg to inform you that any thing which You want or wish me to doe for you, you must write me as I am Sorry your present Situation prevents me having a personable conversation with you except on duty (that of been Sent with any Message from the Commanding Officer to You) as I informd You the Morning when the Commanding Officer desired me to put you under arrest and to Suspend You from all duties in the Detachment that my Brother officers would think it very odd of me to See me Speaking and in Company with You after what has past & that I wishd that you would put in on paper any thing which you wanted me to Say to Majr. Ross or doe myself for you and that if I can (with propriety) I will doe it

I am Sir

Your Most Obdt. Servt.

Ralph Clark

1st. Lieut & Acting

Quarter Master General

Norfolk Island

Augt. 10th. 1790

To

Lieut Robt. Kellow

Marines

Kellow to Clark




  ― 281 ―

My Dr. Friend

Mr. Hartwell desires me to acquaint you of his having written to you inclosing a coppy of your Account But Mrs. Clark desired She might have the Letter to Send with hers

Be so good as to make my Complements to Majr. Ross that I Should be glad of his permission to goe on board the first Ships to morrow morning (by the first Boats)

I am

My Dr. Friend

Your Humble Servt.

Robt. Kellow

Clark to Kellow

Sir

In Answer to your letter of this day informing me that Mr. Hartwell desires you to acquaint me of his having wrote me as also inclosing a copy of my Account But Mrs. Clark desired She might have the letter to Send with hers

You also desire me to be so good as to make your Complements to Major Ross that You Should be glad of his permission to goe on Board one of the Ships to morrow morning (by the first Boats)

for Your information Respecting what Mr. Hartwell desired you to acquaint me with, I am much oblige to you but as Yet I have not Received his letter

In Answer to the latter part of your letter I am desired by Majr. Ross to Acquaint you that he has no objections to your going on Board of the Ships but that you cannot have a Boat to attend You for that purpose and that Should You goe on Board the Ships according to Your wish to Morrow you must on no Account whatever detain or delay the Boats beloning to the Settlement Empd. at present in the Public Service in landing the Provisions, Stores &c. from the Ships

Your Most Obdt. Servt.

Ralph Clark

1st. Lieut. & Actg.

Qr. Mastr. Genl.

on Service To

Lieut. Robt. Kellow

Norfolk Island

Augt. 10th/90

Clark to Beveridge?




  ― 282 ―

Norfolk Island

August 24th. 1790

Dear Sir

Your Kind letter per favour of Mr. Murray (as well as brining me Acquainted with the above Gentleman) for which I beg of You to accept my best wishes

Although it is Several Years Since I have had the pleasure of Seeing You I can assure you that it has not made me forget the Civil & Kind attention which you Showed me while with you in London

as Mr. Murrays Stay with us is So very Short and from the Situations of the place here being Such that no Ship can anchor with Safety by which means I have been deprived of the pleasure of his company more than I otherwise Should which I am exceedingly Sorry for as I think him from the Short Acquaintance a very Worthy Genteell Young man

As I expect to Return to England by the Gorgon as Such my Stay in this Country will be but very Short but Should it be longer than what I at present expect (or in what ever part of the World I may chance to be) I beg to assure you that any person coming from Mr. Beveridge I will Show them every attention and Civility that is in my power

I am exceedingly happy to find by Yours that Mrs. Hume is well as I have not herd from her this Some time

I am with Sinceer wishes for your welfare & happiness

Dear Sir

Your Obdt. Hble. Servt

Ralph Clark

P:S: I have taking the Liberty to Send you per favour of Mr. Murray a mount Pit Bird (not on Account of the Beauty of its Plumage) of which it has non but on Account of its being one of the Birds that has preserved the lives of five hundred and odd persons for these Several months past

note

Clark to Kempster




  ― 283 ―

Norfolk Island

August 26th. 1790

Dear Kempster

Your friendly letter by Captain Nepean I have Received for which accept of my best thanks but the one you mention to have Sent by the Guardian as also the cask which you was so good as to take the trouble to get Sent on board of her, I am affraid are totaly lost from the Accident that has happened that Ship

for the friendship you have shown to me Kempster I am greatly indebted to you for but the friendly advice and generous offer which you have made Mrs. Clark to be her Banker on the death of Mr. Hartwell when his Brother Reduced her allowance to £20 per annum is a pice of friendship I am affraid I shall never be able to make you a Sufficent Acknowledgement for the little money which She may want and which you have been so good as to offer to advance her in my absentse I will on my Return Reimburce you with hearty and Sinceer thanks for your Kindness —— I am Sorry for the death of Mr. Hartwell from whome Since I left Plymth. I have not had a Single line

As you Seem to wish to know how far a nother Years Residence in New South Wales may have changed my opinion of the place —— Respecting it I am Still in the Same way of thinking of it as when I wrote you by the first Ships that Saild from there home and I am Resolved not to Stay in it (if I can help it) Unless Some thing better is offerd me in the Corps that is come out for the Security of New South Wales than a Lieutenancy (if my family was out here with me I perhaps might Stay a few Years longer) but without them I will not —— I cannot give you any information Respecting what Commissions will be offerd to use for there is not a Single person here knows as Yet —— Majr. Ross has no information either from Public or Private Accounts about it —— there is not any of the New South Wales Corps come here as Yet —— you may well Say that I shall be Surprized to find Nepean come out for I thought he would have been the last man in England that would have come out here

I hope You have Received the Letter which I sent by the Supply on her leaving this Isld. after the loss of the Sirius —— She left us in a most terrible Situation there been at that time not more than 6835 lb. Flour, 320 lb. Beef, 3253 lb. Pork, 500½ lb. Rice and 200 Bushels of Wheat with which we had 506 mouths to feed every day but by great good fortune the weather proved favourable to us after the Supplys Sailing from here So that we were able to Save from the wreck the greatest part of the Provisions that She brought for the Settlement as well as the most of her own by the Saving of which we have been able to Spin out life So long as we have done but now by the arrival of the Justinian and Surprize with


  ― 284 ―
Provisions from Port Jackson for use we shall now again be able to live like fighting Cocks —— the Governour has I think (and I never will forgive him) used us all very ill here for he know by the Supplys that when She left use that we had only that quantity of Provisions in the Island and had no prospect then when She left use that we should be able to Save a Single thing out of the Sirius and he to have a Ship in Port Jackson so long agoe as the 3 of June and to let her Remain there two months before he sent her here to See if any of use were above ground or not for he had no Reason to expect that any of us were it was cursed cruel in —— You will be better able to judge by the different Resolutions we were obliged to make to preserve life as long as we could (of which I have sent your Coppies) of the dreadfull prospect we had before use before the arrival of these Ships —— by the loss of the Sirius I lost almost every Article of cloaths that I had as did Major Ross and almost every body else

Major Ross has been Remarkably kind and has paid me the greatest attention Since I have been in this country —— You will See by the General order of the 24 of March last of his having appointed me to Act as Quarter Master General & Keeper of the Public Stores during the Continuation of the Martial Law or untill the Governors in Chief and Captain Generals Pleasure is Know of which last (the Keeper of the Public Stores) I have been within these few days Supperseeded by Letter by the Supply —— I informd you that I had been appointed First Lieutenant (by the death of Poor Captain Shea) Since the 3rd. of Feby. 1789 in Geoe. Johnstones Vacancy and as Major Ross has not the least manner of doubt but that the appointments will be confirmd —— if so I will thank you to be so good as to get me an exchange to Plymouth as at present I belong to Portsmh. Division —— Kellow whome you will see by my Letter which I wrote Mrs. Clark (per Supply) of the Situation he had been in for Some time before our coming to this Island and his Brother officers permitting him to Return to duty with them again on his promise of an amendment in his Conduct but I am Sorry to Say he soon brock that promise after his arrival here and his Conduct has been of late in the opinion of us all So very much Unbecoming the Character of an Officer & Gentleman that we have beged of Majr. Ross that he will not put us under the disagreable necessity of doing duty any longer with a man who we think a disgrace to the Corps he Serves in and who we are determined never to associate with which Request Majr. Ross has complyed with and Mr. Kellow is Suspended from all duties in the Detachment untill further orders —— The Mount Pit Birds have been the greatest friends that ever any of us Know for I may with truth Say that the[y] have Saved all our lives —— the greatest part of us Should have been long agoe in our graves if it had not been for these birds —— Since April last there has been no less one night with a nother than between four and five Thousand Kild —— I Shall Return my thanks for them the longes day I have to live —— the[y] are all nearly gone the[y] Just lasted untill the arrival of the Ships but there is a nother bird come in now also a Sea foul which Burrows in the


  ― 285 ―
ground also like the Mount Pit Bird (which the[y] call mutton Birds) from there tasting like mutton —— the[y] are Remarkably fatt and in great abundance

There is no news I have worth Sending you we are all longing for the arrival of the Gorgon which Ship we are informed we are all to goe home —— I wish that She was arrived

I am happy to find by Yours that all your family are in good health to whome make my best wishes and be assured nothing will give me greater Pleasure than to here of the health and welfare of you and family and am with the greates truth

Your Sinceer friend

Ralph Clark

Creswell is in good health who writes also by this opportunity in Short we have not a person that can be cald Sick —— this is a Remarkable healthy Island for Since the first Setteling there has been only one person died a natural death and that was an (Old Woman) but we had a Schocking Accident happen here a few days back in landing the Convicts (from the Ship which this goes by) brought here —— one of the Boats what was Save when the Sirius was lost beloning to her in coming on Shore with four casks of Salt Provision, 6 Women, a Child beloning to one of the Women the Boat was Set on the Riff by the Tide and the Surf braking at the Same time in the Boat which brock the Boat to pices by which three of the Women, the child, two of the Boats crew and a Convict that went in to assist them were drownd although there was near five hundred people within a few Yards of the Boat at the time and could give them but very little assistance

Adieu Yrs. R.C.

I have taking the liberty to Send a Small Box for Mrs. Clark directed to You which I will thank you to Send her

Clark to Wolrige

Norfolk Island

August 27th. 1790

Sir

Your Letter pr. Favour of Captain Nepean I Received a few days Since by the Surprize Store Ship from Port Jackson Acquainting me with the death of Mr. Hartwell as also enclosing a Letter of Attorney for me to Sign which Letter of


  ― 286 ―
Atty. you will here with Received inclosed, filled up, witnessed and Signed as directed which I hope will come Save to hand

I am exceedingly Sorry for the Death of Mr. Hartwell —— I feel much for his family in there having lost So Valuable a friend —— I can with great truth Say that I alwayse found him in every Sence of the word an honest man

You also acquaint me that I am debter to the late Mr. Hartwell £76.11.6 but I am much at a loss to think how I can be indebted to him near So much and from a Letter which I have from Mrs. Clark dated December the 2d. 1789 where in She informs me that my debt to the late Mr. Hartwell is £50 as also that You had Reduced the allowance to £20 pr. annum from what Mr. Hartwell had promised to pay her Yearly in my absents which on your Receiving this you will continue to pay her the Sum of £30 pr. annum as formely —— I wrote Mr. Hartwell in March last (Pr. Supply) when I acquainted him that I had drawn on him for the Sume of £ [*] Sterling payable to the Executors of the late Captain Shea which I beg he would please to honour when payment became due but from the death of Mr. Hartwell I have to beg of you as one of the Executors of the late Mr. Hartwell to honour the above Bill when presentednote

I am Sir

Your Most Obdt. Servt.

Ralph Clark

To

Mr. Thos Wolrige

Pay Office

Plymouth

Clark to Wolrige

Norfolk Island

August 28th. 1790

Sir

I wrote You Yesterday by the Surprize (in which I inclosed the Letter of Attorney Signed and Witnessed According to disire) but as there is a chance of the Ship that this goes by the Justinian getting home before the Surprize if in Such case I hope this will enable you to Receive my Subsistance

As I informed you in my Letter of Yesterdays date which I again here


  ― 287 ―
Repeat that I am Exceedingly Sorry for the death of Mr. Hartwell for in him I think Society has lost one of its most Valuable Members that of a truly honest man which I have always found him

I Am Sir

Your Most Obdt. Servt.

Ralph Clark

To

Mr. Thos. Wolrige

Pay Office

Plymouth

Clark to Campbell

Norfolk Island

Feby. 10th. 1791

My Dr. Friend

In the first place I Return you my best thanks for your Very Kind Letter which I Received in August last by the Justinian Store Ship in the Second of your friendly remembrance to me in your letter to Major Ross from whome I am Exceedingly happy to learn of Your good State of health which I pray God may long be your constant companion

Majr. Ross, Your little friend (John) are very well as is every body here in perfect health John Johnstone excepted who Return to Port Jackson in the Supply for the Recovery of it which I think he never will Regain for in my opinion he is past all medical assistance

I am exceedingly Sorry to inform You that we have not lived amongst each other in that State of harmony which I flatter myself at our first arrival we Should but it has been quite the contrary —— we have been constantly bickering with each other which I believd would not have happened had the Supply cald here in her way to Batavia and taking Mr. Bradley along with her which I find was to have been the case could She have made the Island —— if it had not I think been for him we should have lived as happy as the days are long —— he has been the fountain I am pretty certain from whome all our Hot water has flown from for soon after the Supplys leaving this in March last he quited the Mess and went and Messed by himself —— he did all in his power to make Captain Hunter quite at the same time which


  ― 288 ―
he could not effect untill August when that Gentleman left the Mess also and has Kept at so great a distance from Major Ross ever Since as hardly to have Spoke to each other (I cannot give any Reason for this Strang manner of Acting Except that he found that he had got all the little comforts that Major Ross had Such as Tea, Sugar, Liquor for Majr. Rosses little Stock which he was able to save from the Sirius lasted him untill that time for he saved very little) he then went and Messed with his first Lieut which he has done ever Since —— In Short every Officer of the Sirius here has followed ther Captain & 1st. Lieutenants Steps So much So that the[y] often have breached Major Ross whout paying him the least Compliment and more So the Queens Birth day neather Captain Hunter or any of his Officers waited on Major Ross to pay him the Compliments in honer of the day as the Kings Officer Commanding in Chief here —— I here by leave to mention a little curcumstance to you to Show you the generous disposition of the Second Captain of His Majestys late Ship Sirius which is that he Saved four hogsheads of wine from the wreck three of them he Said belonged to Captain K: Stuart of the Navy and the other to Mr. Palmer but which last has Since proved to belong to himself —— while he mest with Major Ross he never So much as offerd a Single drop of the Said wine to him then or Since although he knows Major Ross had nothing but water to drink but the moment he went and Messed with his friend Mr. Bradley he began making use of it and I am told has ever Since —— dont you think he is a pretty friend

I assure you Captain Campbell that Majr. Ross has Since he has been in this Island to prevent having any Disputes has not taking notice of Matters which he could and I am certain he would in any other place But for the above Reasons that of wishing to live on good terms with every body but I dont no how it is the[y] would not let him but I hope the few of use that now Remains will live together like Brothers and I dont See any thing to prevent use

As Major Ross informs me that he sends you coppies by this opportunity of all the Resolutions, orders in Council during the Continuation of the Martial Law as well as the orders Proclaimed Since and the Plan which he has put in force for the Convicts to make themselves independent of the Store after a Certain time therfore a Repitition of them from Me will be quite needless —— by the Justinian I wrote to Kempster inclosing to him coppies of the Resolutions, orders in Council &c. from the first Proclaming of the Martial Law —— I think it will be in England before any the Governor can Send —— I hope that I did not wrong in Sending them as Major Ross did not Send them to any Public Office or to Private Correspondance

I flatter myself that after your reading the above Plan (for the Convicts to live independent of the Store) You will be of the Same opinion as Major Rosses Friends are her (of which I am affraid he has but few Sinceer ones) myself Excepted that it will doe him very great Credit and I think the Minstry will be very much obliged to him for putting in force a Plan which the[y] So ardently wish for but I dont think Major Ross will be much thank by his good and worthier friends in your


  ― 289 ―
part of the Colony as well as by Some in this —— the[y] will endeavour to throw every drop of Cold water on it in ther power to make it Miscarry as Major Ross is the planner of it but let the Governor make what alterations he thinks proper in it but for his own Sake he will not prevent its being Carried into Execution or Some Plan Similar to it for I think if he dose he will get Mr. Pit on his Back who I believe dose not Ride easy when ther is a Call on the Treasury for Money which will be the Case if Majr. Rosses Plan is not Carried Most Effectively in to Execution for in my humble opinion ther will (in the present State of the Colony) cannot be a better —— dont be Surprized when I inform You that after the Trouble you took this time twelf months for Mr. Kellow for his Brother officers to permit him to Return and doe duty with us again on a promise of Amendment in his future Conduct, that promise Simile he Soon forgot, for in July last his behavour in all our Opinions here, has been Remarkably ill, So much So, that we were obliged to write to Major Ross to beg of him not to put us under the disagreeable Necessity of doing duty with a man whose character we Really think to be infamous and deragatory to that of an Officer and Gentleman and who we are determined never to associat with, which Request Majr. Ross granted and in consequence he has been Suspended from all duties in the Detachment &c. —— I have Sent you in Case Majr. Ross has not a Coppy of the Letter which we wrote to Majr. Ross in Consequence of Mr. Kellows ill conduct —— John Johnstone whome I suppose you will See Soon after his arrival at Port Jackson will tell you more about the matter —— I wish You also to ask him as he knows the whole of the matter which I doe not so as to be able to give a true Statement of Subject Respecting a Quarrel between Mr. Bryan and Shortland which I am told is not Quite Settled but from the little I no of the matter, Mr. Bryan Seems to have lost himself very much which I am Sorry for on Account of his connextion with Major Ross

As Majr. Ross informd me that You Acquaint him of your want of Corn for the little Stock which you have been able to collect for your Selves for a Sea Store, in case he Should forget to mention to you (from the hurry and the number of things he has to think off at this time) he has sent on board of the Supply under the care of Mr. Callam two Casks of Corn, one of Wheat and the other of Indian Corn also a few Onions for your present consumtion —— the Corn he hopes will be able to last you untill the Return of the Supply —— he would have sent you more by this opportunity but they cannot find Room for any more on board and that you need not be under the least concern for the want of that Article as Majr. Ross and Self will be able to bring a Sufficient Quantity for Sea Store to Carry use to any other Port where we can Supply ourselves from a Market and as for fowls, Hoggs &c. I would advise you not to Purchase any more as Majr. Ross will be able to bring away with him from her of his own Geese, Ducks, fowls, Hoggs and Piggs, more than he will I am affraid be able to find Room on board the Gorgon if that Should be the Ship we are to goe home in —— as for Chests, Boxs &c. there is also a Sufficient


  ― 290 ―
number all Ready for any thing they may be wanted for of which number is one he has got to Pack the Birds in which he wanted to have sent now with the Birds he has been able to Collect her but the[y] are not able to find Room for it on board, which I Believe

I have to beg of you to be so good on the Arrival of any Ships (or from the Dutchman if he Should not be gone) to purchas me if any Such things are to be Sold as much linnen as will make a half Dozen of Shirts, a Couple pair of Sheets and three or four pices of Nankeen —— I Should not Trouble you with this Commission if I was not very much in want of them for I lost most all my linnen by the Sirius and Should not have Saved So much as I did if it had not been for Mr. Walker who was on the Beach when one of the Seamen came on Shore with Some of my Shirts on His Back which Mr. Walker took from the Seaman and deliverd to me

By a Letter which I have from Kempster by the last Ships from Europe he Acquaints me that he Shiped a great number of things on board of the Guardian for me of which I have not Received a Single Article as you mention to Majr. Ross of a Pice of Red Cloath being at Port Jackson that was Saved out of the Guardian I wrot for as much as would make me a Coat and Jackett and Kempster informs me that he Sent all the things which I wrote for —— I beg of You (if you think it worth my while) to put in a claim with the others that had Such an Article coming out but Should it be more or less than will make a Coat and Jackett I have no pretentions to it and Should any article directed to me come to Port Jackson in my Absence I futher beg of you to take care of them for me —— I have Sent under the care of Mr. Callam a Small Box with what Seeds the Natural production of this Island that I have been able to collect which are very few —— I hope you have been able to collect a good number Since we left you as I did not Save a Single Seed out of the great number of different kinds I had —— in the Box you will also find a little Small Shot which I Said to Majr. Ross that it would be of more Service to you than to him here as Such he has therfore Sent it to you and Should you be in any want of Powder Major Ross has told Callam to inform you to apply to Ball for what you want and inform him that Majr. Ross will on the Supplys Arrival her Repay him any Quantity he may Supply you —— the Box being made to hold more than for the Small Quantity of Seeds which I have to put in I thought I could not doe Better than fill it up with Onions which you will be So good as to give half a dozen of to Timins with my best wishes to him —— at the Same time inform him if there is any thing here which I can Send him I will with the greatest pleasure & with that friendship which I Really posses for him —— As I hope to here from you pr. Return of the Supply doe let me no all that you can about this new Corps —— if there is any thing to be offerd to induce use to enter into it for nobody knows any thing about the matter heer or if the[y] doe the[y] keep it to themselves —— make my Compt. to Nepean and that I am very much obliged to him for the care he took of my Letters and that if he will come here I shall be very happy to See him and more So if he


  ― 291 ―
brings the Relief with him

Adieu my friend and believe me that I am Strictly in every Sence of the word

Yours very Sinceerly

Ralph Clark

My best wishes to James, whome I had almost forgot, tell him his old play fellow (who I believe writes to him as well as to you) is very well and that he is grown very much and his taking his guard Regular ever Since he has been heer as well as the best of use, he prides himself very much on his not being the Youngest officer in the Collony as he Says there is one in the New Corps Younger than him

P:S: I am Just Returned from carring a Messaged to Captain Hunter from Majr. Ross in Consequence of Some Conversation that Captain Hunter and I had this morning Respecting Some fowls and Corn which Majr. Ross has Sent on board of the Supply for Captain Hunter use on his passaged from heer to Port Jackson which Conversation I thought necessary to mention to Majr. Ross which was that he would not think of Accepting the fowls and Corn that Majr. Ross had Sent on board on Account of the terms which the[y] had been for this Some time past on —— on my mentioning the above to Majr. Ross he begd of me to goe and tell Captain Hunter that his Reasons for his Sending the fowls and Corn on board for him was that as he Captain Hunter had Accepted every little present which Majr. Ross had ever Sent to him and knowing he had no Such thing of his Own was his only Reason for Sending them —— at the Same time wishing to no if he had any Public complaint to make against him Majr. Ross or if the Quarrell which Seemd to Subsist between them was a Private one for he wished to no on what terms if ever the[y] Should meet again the[y] were to meet —— Captain Hunter gave me for Answer that he had no Public Complaint to make against Majr. Ross nor Private Quarrel with him and if ever the[y] Should meet again he wished for nothing more than common Civility as he never wished to be on the Same friendly footing which they had once been —— Captain Hunter and I talked over every thing from the first Landing on this Island Untill this moment —— in the Course of the Conversation he Said that he had been told that Majr. Ross had wrote home a Complaint against him to the Admiralty (as I was Certain that Majr. Ross had never done Such a thing) I told him that I would not leave him to goe back to Majr. Ross untill he had told me who the person was that had informed him —— he beged that I would Excuse him —— I told him I would not nor could I in Justice to my friend whome I was Certain was Innocent of the Charge made against him —— When after Some time, little John going past use, he Said pointing to him there he is ther who the information came from who told it to (Ross) the Quarter Master who mentioned it to Mr. Parker the Carpenter who Acquainted me with it, that Majr. Ross was very busy in writing a Complaint


  ― 292 ―
against me (Captain Hunter) to the Admiralty —— I told him (Captain Hunter) I was very much obliged to him for informing me who the person was that had given him Such information but at the Same time he must excuse me in telling him (Capt. Hunter) that I did not believe that the child had ever Said Such a thing but that I should Mention it to Majr. Ross which I did who asked John if ever he had Spoke to (Ross) the Quarter Master of the Sirius which he poor fellow Said he had never which I believe to be true for the child did not like them (the Seamen) so well what can you make of Such a man (as Captain Hunter) Major Ross has taking no notice of it, which I think he is very Right in as he is Concious of never having Said or done any thing that could tend to the disadvantage of Captain Hunter Since on this Island —— there was a great dele more past between Captain Hunter and me which I will Releate to You when we Meet

adieu Your &

   R C

To

Captain Campbell

Marines

Port Jackson

Clark to Campbell

Feby. 11th. 1791

Dr. Sir

As the Supply has not Yet left use I embrace the opportunity to write You a few more lines as I forgot to inform you in my letter of Yesterday how we were able to Subsist ourselves untill the Arrival of a Supply of Provisions by the Surprize and Justinian Store Ships in August last —— if it had not been for the great aboundance of Birds which resorted to Mount Pit about Sun Set the greatest part of use would have been in our Graves before the Arrival of the above Ships —— you will hardly believe me when I inform you that from the latter end of April untill the Middle of July no Smaller a number on a very moderate Computation than five thousand was Kild a night —— I have often know Seven and Eight thousand, particularly on the Sunday Evenings brought into Camp by the Sailors, Marines and Convicts (male and female) which number was caught in a few hours —— there never was a Bird Caught untill one hour after Sun Set and every body was obliged to leave


  ― 293 ―
to mount before ten oClock —— they never came in from Sea (or where ever the[y] come from for that I doe not no) untill about Sun Set when the[y] generally hoverd about the mount for ane hour before the[y] came down which was a thick as a Shour of hail —— this Account will make the Old Storry of Moses being in the Wilderness be a little more believed Respecting the Shour of quails —— every body heer ous there existance to the Mount Pit Birds —— before the[y] intirly left use a nother Bird came in and Supplyd there place but was not attached to Mount Pit only but was found in the holes of the ground in the day time all over the Island —— the[y] Resemble the Mount Pit Bird in Plumage, make &c all but the feet which are white which the Mount Pit Birds are not —— the[y] eat when Boild like Mutton for which we named them the flying Sheep —— the[y] were also in great abundance for Six weeks when ther Young tooke flight and the[y] all left use

from the beginning of April untill the 20 of July we had abundance of Fish when the Surf would permit the Boats to goe out and after the 20 of July untill the begining of Decr. we were not able to Catch a fish by the Boats or from the Rocks, now when the Surf permits the Boats to goe out we catch a good number but not in Such abundance as in the Months of May and June —— I have kept a Memorandum of every fish that was Caught by the Boats Since I have been in the Island and how the[y] have been Served out —— also as nearly as I have been able the number of Mount Pit Birds that were brought into Camp of which I intended to have Sent you a Coppy by this opportunity but for the want of Time must defer it untill the Return of the Supply

Majr. Ross desires me to inform you that he Received from Captain Hunter 106 pounds of Ships Sugar and 150 pounds of Raisins beloning to Mr. Palmer which cannot be Settled for her as Captain Hunter dose not no what Mr. Palmer will charge for them —— he therfore desires that you will be so good as to pay Mr. Palmer for them and charged it to him (Major Ross) I have also further to inform you that should any thing happen to John Johnstone so as to prevent Majr. Rosses Seeing him again eather by his going home or Death he is indebted to Majr. Ross for 25 pounds of the above Raisins —— I mention this to you that Majr. Ross may not be a loser by his forgetfulness as he is gone on board without mentioning how or when he is to pay Majr. Ross for the Said 25 pounds of Raisins

Adieu

Yours Sinceerly

R Clark

To

Captain Campbell

Marines

Port Jackson

Campbell to Clark




  ― 294 ―

My Dear Clark

I am not as angry as I am vexed with you for entertaining So dispicable an opinion of both yourself and me as Major Ross informs me you do —— after what Repeatedly passed between you and me prior to your leaving this place It should in my opinion have convinced you that Such an idea could never enter into my head and if it had be assured that you and no other would have been the person that I would have mentioned it to —— but the truth is that I would just as soon have Suspected myself as I would you —— after the many Repeated proofs you gave of your friendship of an intention of leading Major Ross a stray —— when I took the liberty of Cautioning Majr. Ross against the idle Reports of those who might call themselves his friends I would not possibly alluded to any more than Majr. Ross himself had Said to me of Some of the Young people of the Sirius & what Captain Hunter Said of the Same people for from no others have I ever heard a Silable of what passed at Norfolk but what I have had from Mr. Callum from what he told me I was no longer Surprized at what Major Ross had Said —— This Gentleman I have ever found too much a time Server and too much attached to Self interest to have any high opinion of or to repose more confidence in than I would in any other Character here —— when he mentioned to me his having had his Suspicions of You and that he believed he had Said as much to me I told him that he had never hinted at Such an idea to me for that if he had I most undoubtedly would have set him right —— with respect to the injury he did you, his Answer was that he was now well convinced of it himself and that there was no man of whome he had A higher opinion than he now had of You —— on his Saying that he formed his first opinion of you from the report of others and not from his own knowlege —— I Represented the folly of Such judgements —— something more passed with which he was not as I Suppose pleased as he has not been near me Since —— I am many letters in arrears to you owing to one Accident or other but what gives me most concern is that I have not had it in my power to get any of the Commissions you intrusted to my Care executed which I hope you will believe me did not proceed from want of inclination but the want of power —— The Stockings which I intended for you I am happy that you did not get for they were not only very bad but very dear from half a Guinea to twelve Shillings —— I hope that we Shall now soon meet —— when if you are in want of any part of what I have I can with Truth assure you that a part shall with much Satisfaction be Speard you —— you will know the State in which you left me here —— I have now only to tell you that it is not a bit mended —— It is true we are all from the teeth outwards on good terms with each other and I have made it my Study to be as attentive and Civil to all as my Situation could permit but I must likewise observe that I have not met with any Return of it from one individual amongst them —— however we let that Business drop for the present and when we meet it will Serve for conversation and will I think not a little Surprise


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after having as I understand you have been told of the harmony among us

with this letter you have one which was lately sent to me by the Govr. who it seems found it in a Chest beloning to one of the Convicts at Rose Hill when Searching for some Stolen goods —— as it was sent to me Sealed I know not the contents —— it however Serves to let us know how very little care was takin on board the Guardian of what ever was intended for us —— The Gentlemen who have any claim upon the piece of Scarlet Cloath mentioned in one of my former letters have determined to let it Remain in Store till your Return to us

With respect to all the news in my power to collect I refer you to my letter to Majr. Ross which will Save me the trouble of a Repetition and therfore as I have at present nothing more to Say but what concerns yourself which is that if you will only let me know the things you want by the Return of this Ship and if they can be procured they Shall be sent to you

God Bless you and all thats good and happy attend you So Sinceerly wish your friend

Jas. Campbell

Sydney

6th. Augt. 1791

To

Lieut R. Clark

Marines

Norfolk Island

Johnston to Clark

Sydney

August 7th.1791

Dr. Clark

On my arrival at this place from Norfolk Island I found a piece of Scarlet Cloath in the Qr. Masters Store which I have every Reason to Suppose belongs to me but as I have understood that you had a Great Quantity of things coming out to you from England I would not take it untill I know if you had any Claim to it although I believe Every officer here has allowed it to be mine

I shall therfore be much obliged to You if by the Return of the Mary Ann you will let me know if you have any claim to the Scarlet Cloath in the Store & if


  ― 296 ―
you have any Account of Scarlet Cloath being Sent out to You what Quantity you Expected and what the Person who Sent it wrote to you upon that Subject

I hope we shall soon see the Gorgon here to carry us to England otherwise they must allow us Field Officers pay for at present they Ask a Guinea a Gallon for Rum and the Same for a Pound of Tobbacca & every thing else in proportion but I hope we shall soon be in the Land of Plenty

I Remain

Dr. Clark Yours

Geo: Johnston

To

Lieut Clark

Marines

Norfolk Island

Clark to Johnston

Norfolk Island

August 29th. 1791

Dr. Johnston

By the Mary Ann Transport which Arrived here the 14th. Inst. I was favoured with your letter of the 7th. by which you inform me that the piece of Scarlet Cloath which is still in the Quarter Masters Store you have every Reason to Suppose to belong to you but as you Understand that I had a great Quantity of things coming out from England you would not take it untill you know if I had any Claim to it and that you wish me to inform you Pr. Return of the Mary Ann if I had any Claim to the Scarlet Cloath in the Store and that you also wish to know if I have any Account of Scarlet Cloath being sent out to me, the Quantity I Expected and what the Person who sent it wrot me on the Subject

In Answer to which the only Claim that I have is that by a letter which I have from Lieut & Qr. Master Kempster (Pr. favour of Captain Nepean) where in he informs me that he hopes I have Received his letter by the Guardian and the Cask with what things I wrote for and as I wrote by one of the Ships which left Port Jackson in Novr. 88, amongst other things for as much Scarlet Cloath as would make a Coat and Jacket —— I therfore Suppose that Article was Sent as well as the other things which I wrote for




  ― 297 ―

on the Supplys Arrival here in Feby. last I understood from Major Ross that there was a piece of Scarlet Cloath in the Qr. Masters Store at Port Jackson without any direction on it which had been Saved out of the Guardian —— on the Supplys Return I wrote to Captain Campbell Respecting it Acquainting him that I had wrote for as much Scarlet Cloath as would make me a Coat & Jacket and by a letter which I had from Kempster he informs me that he had sent all the things which I had wrote for by the Guardian —— as Such I desired him to put in a claim for me with the others that had Such an Article coming out but further informed him that Should it be more or less than would make a Coat and Jackett I had no pretentions to it —— if Captain Campbell has my letter of Feby. last Still by him, he can inform you that the above is what I wrote to him Respecting the Cloath —— Kempster's letter to me dose not Mention any particular Article which letter I would have herwith inclose to you but as it contains mostly private affairs I hope that will be a Sufficient Excusse for not Sending it —— I have Shown Faddy the paragraph in the letter wherin he Acquaints me of his Sending the things in the Guardian and as Faddy writes to Creswell I have beged of him to mention to Creswell that I have Shown him that part of Kempsters letter where he informs me that he has Sent all the things by the Guardian which I wrote for which I hope will Convince you as well as the Rest of my Brother officers that when I desired Captain Campbell to lay in a Claim for me that I did not doe it without Some pretentions —— as You Acquaint me that you have Every Reason to Suppose that the Cloath is Yours and that Every Officer at Port Jackson also allows it to be yours as Such I withdraw every claim that was made on behalf of me and give up every pretentions what ever to it

I hope by the time you Receive this that the Gorgon will be with you —— there is nothing under heaven I wish So much for as her Arrival here to take use all away for of all the places under the Sun this is without Exception the most disagreable that possible can be —— you and Creswell are both happy fellows to have got Save the out Side of the Reef and at Such a distance from it —— Captain Hill soon after you left use Quarreld with Major Ross and which Quarrel Still Subsists —— Faddy and Hill dont Sit there Horses together neather for Faddy and him have not Exchd. a word for these ten weeks past —— I dont much admire him myself for he talks too much of having people before the Kings Bench for me —— Major Ross has Removed Him and all the detachment of the New South Wales Corps on this Island to doe duty at Phillipsburg (Cascade) by themselves which I am glad of and hope they will Remain there while we stay in the Island —— I understand from Prentice that he and Abbott have wrote (by this Convayance) letters to be delivered to Majors Gross or Melcombe which ever of them Should arrive first at Port Jackson praying for a Court Martial on Nepean but for what Reason I am not Acquainted —— we here have had nothing but Court Martials Since you have been gone and all of them in the N:S:W: Corps Except one on a man beloning to use which was on (Ellis) Major Ross Servant whome Captain Hill brought to a Court Martial for


  ― 298 ―
Contempt and Repeated disrespect Shown to him in not paying him the Compliment due to him as an officer of which Crime Ellis was Acquitd —— there has been no alteration in the Detachment Since you left this Except that Clinch is Reduced

from the present appearence of the Crops of Indian Corn and wheat it has all the indication that there will be a most plentiful Harvest here —— Faddy informs me that Creswell wishes that I would Send him as much of the Pine wood as will make a Cott fraim —— be so good as to Acquaint Creswell that I have Sent on Board of the Mary Ann a Plank of 5 Inches deep 23 Inches Broad and 14 feet long for him under the Care of Mr. Lawson which I hope will come Save and Answer the purpose he wants it for and if there is here any thing which I can doe for you & if you will let me know it I will perform it if possible with pleasure & I Remain

Dr. Johnston Yours

Ralph Clark

To

Captain Johnston

Marines

Port Jackson

Clark to Campbell

Norfolk Island

August 29th 1791

Dear Campbell

Your Kind letter by the Mary Ann Transport I received the 14 Inst. believe me that though I did not write to you on the Supplys Return in may last I was then not less your friend than I am this present moment —— I can with truth assure you that there is no two men Existing whose friendship I Value more than I doe yours and Major Ross's but I cannot help Remarking that on the Return of the Supply from Carrying Captain Hunter and his Ships Companie from this to Port Jackson I was Vexed in not hearing from you and was more So on Major Rosses Reading to me a paragraph from your letter to him wher you Caution him against the idle reports of those who might call themselves his friends —— at that time there was no other person her who Major Ross placed any Confidence in but myself as such I could not think any other but that you alluded to me but your present letter has fully convinced me that I have been in the wrong to think you entertained


  ― 299 ―
such an idea of me that of leading Major Ross a Stray and I am now fully of your opinion that if I had given myself the Smallest time for Recollection and Recald to my memory what Repeatedly passed between you and me prior to my Embarking for this Island Such an opinion must Instantly have been Banished from my Breast —— I therfore have nothing left but to ask your forgiveness which I heer most willingly ask of you

Ever Since I have been on this Island and prior to my arrival in it when ever Major Ross asked me for my opinion eather as an officer or as a Private Gentleman and friend I can lay my hand on my heart and tell you as well as all the World that as an officer I gave it him to the best of my Judgment and as a Private Gentleman and friend I gave him that also as a man of honour and a True friend —— if I had acted otherwise (according I believe to the wish of soom of our good friends) I then should have prostituted the name of man and friend which I trust they never will be by me —— Concious my Dear friend that in the whole course of my life there is not a Single Action in it that gives me the Smallest Remorse for to my Country and my friend I have been ever true —— I therfore am Quite indifferent what people in this part of the worlds opinion is of me —— Although I am well convinced that there is a great many in this Colony that wish that I was at the D…l as well on your Side of the Stream as the opposite Side of it and I Believe would give a Trifle that if possible they could make a Breack in the friendship which Subsist between Major Ross and me but that friendship I flatter myself is not to be brock by any Set of men in this Colony or by any promise or Reward that is possible for man to make me —— as for Mr. Callum I entertain the Same opinion of him as you doe of whom I will not Say more at present —— you doe a little Surprise me by your informing me that you are on the terms with the people a round you as when I left you for I understood from Mr. Callum the last time he was here that the greatest harmony Subsisted between you and them particularly between Pouldon, Furzer and you who he said often dinned with you —— I have been often told not to believe above the half that I heer which I as often found I ought not to doe —— I am Sorry to Acquaint you that we have not lived on Such good terms with the New South Wales Corps as I on the Supplys Return to you I flatterd myself we should —— they are without Exception the most Selfish Set of men I ever cam a Cross and as for Hill I dont know what to call him but as Majr. Ross will inform you of that particular I therfore most Refer you to his letter —— as we are Constantly in hott water with them Majr. Ross has Removed them all to Phillipsburgh (Cascade) where they have been for some time and Since they have been gone we have lived as happy as the day is long —— that is Majr. Ross, Faddy, Considen, little John and myself and heer I beg leave to congratulate you that the disagreement between Majr. Ross and Considen no longer Subsist but was Amicably Settled to the Satisfaction of both as well as to me for I have been long trying to bring this matter round which I thank god is at last accomplished —— dont you think this will Surprise some of the people to


  ― 300 ―
the Right and left of you —— as for myself I Believe it will give some the Grips for a little while untill they can get some thing fresh to work on —— Respecting the Scarlet Cloath Geoe. Johnston has wrot to me about it informing me that he has Every Reason to Suppose that it belongs to him —— I have wrote to him in Answer my Reason for desiring you to be so good as to lay in a Claim for me but as he thinks that it is his I have told him a Such I withdraw every Claim that you laid on behalf of me and give up every pretentions whatever to it —— I am much oblige to you for your kind offer and should I want any of the things which you may be able to spare me I shall make no Scruple to ask you for them —— the things which I wish you to purchasse for me are on the enclose list which if you can get them for me without given too Extravagant a price for them I will be much obliged to you —— Majr. Ross has desired me to mention to you for fear he should forget it in his letter that you must get Some hay Cut to carry to Sea with use when we leave Port Jackson and that you had better kill as much of your Stock which he Says you are keeping up for Sea Store as we shall be able to bring more away from this of Hoggs and Poultry of all kinds than there will be room for on board of the Gorgon —— there will be about 40 bushels of potatoes put on Board of her for Majr. Ross which are now ripe but will not take them out of the Ground for this month to come and Majr. Ross further desired me to tell you that if it is Captn. Wm. Parker who Commands the Gorgon that he knows him very well is an old Mess mate of Majr. Rosses and a very good fellow and he wishes for you to find out if he goes home in the Ship with use or not —— if he dose that you would Endeavour to See him and make Major Rosses Compt. to him and inform him that Majr. Ross wishes that he would not give himself any trouble to purchasse any Stock at Port Jackson that if Captain Parker agrees to our living together that in such case Majr. Ross will put on Board as much Stock as he can find room for —— I have sent on Board of the Mary Ann a Small Cask containing 83 Eggs, 4 Yams, Some Bananas &c. for you —— also the Sugar Cask which you sent to Majr. Ross is full of Callavances for your present Consumption —— Prentice has just informed me that he and Abbot Sends letters by this convayance to Port Jackson for Majors Gross or Melcombe which ever of them may arrive first in this Country praying for a Court Martial on Captain Nepean but what there charge against him is I am a stranger too as Yet —— I mention this to you that the first time you See Nepean that you may inform him that there are Such letters at Port Jackson that if he dose not know it he may not be taking by Surprize on Majr. Gross or Melcombe Arrival —— from Majr. Ross you will be informd how very ill he has been Since you last herd from him but by the goodness of the Almighty God he is at this present moment as well as he ever was in his life which I pray long may he continue So —— your little fellow John is very well and grows very fast and what is Still better is a very good Boy —— the letter which accompanys this directed to Kempster I will thank you to Send it on the first Ship that leaves Port Jackson for China as it is a few lines for Mrs. Clark —— as I dont think the


  ― 301 ―
China Ships will call here therfore any thing which you may wish to Send to me you had Better not Send them by any of those Ships Except that they have Stores &c. on board to be landed here —— I have taking the liberty with you to direct a Box as if for you but it is for Connell of your Company

God Almighty Bless and preserve you is the constant wish of your Sinceer friend

Ralph Clark

I Have not put any of the Bananas in the cask with the Eggs and Yams but have sent you a Bunch under the care of Captain Monro which I hope will come save —— Faddy and Considen begs there best wish to you —— if you Expect to heer from me by any other opportunity you must send me a Sheet of Paper for I have not got a Single Sheet

To

Captain Campbell

Marines

Port Jackson

Callam to Clark

Sydney Cove

Septemr. 3d. 1791

Dr. Clark

You will Receive this note by the Solamander Captain Nickol who Arrived at this port a few days Since & is orderd for Norfolk with a Hundred & three male Convicts —— there is no Occurrance at this Miserable place Since my last to Majr. Ross worth Communicating —— notwith Standing every Exertion of the Carpenter has not been Successfull in obtaining a Tree Sufficiently Sound or any ways fit to Repair the Supplys main mast —— the William & Ann Transport likewise the Atalantic in which Ship Lieut Bowen one of the Agents of Transports has Arrived —— they have got Porter, Port wine, Tea, Sugar & Tabaco &c. —— the Articles were to be charged at the Rate of Cent Pr. Cent but most Articles appear charged double that price they likewise Refuse Accepting Bills that are not endorsed Reciprocally amongst the Officers —— this Step has given general umbrage & thier goods as Yet


  ― 302 ―
Remain on Hand —— I have indeeed Received a few dozens of Porter which is Excellent a little Tobacco and some Soop & wine for the Mess but am determined neither to endorse or have my bills endorsed unless the Officers in Camp adapt the form —— Captn. Campbell informs me he has sent you plenty of News papers but I Believe they contain but little entertainment —— the Arrival of the Gorgon is hourly looked for which will Relieve the general anzsity of Individuals as no private letters of any Sort have as Yet been Received —— Dr. Clark I have taken the liberty of transmitting you half a Dozen Sp: Dollars in order that you would take the Trouble to purchasing us a few fowls —— Captn. Nickol has promised to take greatest care of any that may be sent on board from —— be so good in Return to Say if there is any thing that Blackburn or myself could do for Majr. Ross or Mr. Clark at this port as it would afford a particular pleasure in Return for the Many Kind & friendly offices confered on use —— our best wishes for Majr. Ross & Sons well fare with our Complements to all the officers

& Remain your most obliged & Sinceer well wisher

Jas. Callam

To

Lieut Ralph Clark

Marines

Norfolk Island

Clark to Callam

Norfolk Island

Septr. 29, 1791

Dr. Callam

Your Pr. favour of Captain Nicol of the Solamandar with the Small parcel containing the Six Spanish Dollars I have Recieved —— I am happy to learn by Yours that you and Mr. Blackburn are well & I hold my self very much obliged to you and him for your kind offer —— But as Captain Campbell prior to my leaving port Jackson was so very kind and obliging to offer to negotiate any little Business for me which I ther want done at Port Jackson and whose friendly offer I then accepted I


  ― 303 ―
therfor have Commissiond that Gentleman to transact the little business which I at present want done for me at Port Jackson —— I am Sorry that I have not been So Successful an Agent for you as I could wish in not been able to procure more fowls than 15 with the Money which you sent me for that purpose —— I have sent the fowls on Board of the Salamander under the Care of Captain Nicol who Says that he will take the greatest Care of them for you —— I hope that you will Recieve them all Safe for the[y] are very fine ones —— News from here there is none Except every body is very well and from every apperance there is every indication that there will be a most plentiful Harvest here —— there is near one hundred Acres in and Round Arthurs Vale and at Queensborough of Some of the finest Wheat that was ever Seen in any part of the World and all coming fine large Ears —— there will be near the same Quantity of Indian Corn planted by the end of this month but the Grubs have played the Devil with the most that has been planted Except at Queensborough where there has not been a Grub seen as Yet —— there is a Queensborough ten Acres of wheat and about thirty Six Acres of Indian Corn which is past the power of the Grub to hurt it and we have nothing now to fear but the fly and Catterpillar which I flatter myself they will not make there appearance so as to doe use any great hurt for of the fly there has been only two Seen and of the Catterpillar none & I hope for the Sake of them that are to Remain here they never will again —— You Complain of the Extortioned prices that the different Masters of the Ships ask for the Articles which they have brought out for Sale —— the Master of the Solamander is not behind hand with them for he asks at least three hundred pr. Cent more on his different Articles which he has for Sale than what they doe at Port Jackson and if it had not been for his Selling his things at so dear a Rate I should have been able to have sent you double the Quantity of fowls for the Money that you Sent but the people when they found that he would not part with his goods at a less Rate than what he at first asked they Rose there fowls from a Shilling to three Shillings at once per fowl —— I was in hopes that I should have had the pleasure of Seing you at Port Jackson long before this —— when you last left this although I am a little out of my Estimation I still flatter myself that, that hope is at no great distance from the hourly Expectation of they Arrival of the Gorgon —— has your Carpenter Realy flatterd himself into a belief that he will be able to find in that part of New South Wales that we as Yet know any thing of a Spar Sufficiently Sound or fit to Repair the main mast of the Supply —— he Surly must have dreamt it for he is no Stranger for now three years past of the bad Quality of the Timber in the Miserable Country would not the Bowsprite of the Sirius make a mast for the Supply it could easly be got out and sent on the first Ship to Port Jackson —— there is also two good Top Mast and two fishes for mast here —— they I think would doe Better to Repair the Mast of the Supply than any wood your Carpenter will be able to get Round Port Jackson for that purpose —— if there is any thing which I can doe or get done for you or Blackburn here let me know it and I will with pleasure —— Major Ross,


  ― 304 ―
little John are both very well and joins me in best wishes to you and Blackburn & Remain

Your Most obliged and well wisher

Ralph Clark

To

Mr. Jas. Callam

Surgeon of HM:S Supply

Port Jackson

Campbell to Clark

Sydney

23d. Augt. 1791

My dear Clark

I am happy for your sake to have it in my power to contradict that part of my letter to Majr. Ross in which I said that there were no letters by the last Ships either for him or any of you that are with him —— Since then I found the Ten enclosed ones which Creswell informed me were in the possession of Captn. Tench who was the first person that boarded the Ship they came by —— It gave me Sinceer pleasure to learn from Lt. Bowen the Agent who came in the above Ship that he had seen Mrs. Clark and left her in perfect health

Every thing that has come to my knowledge and worth the mentioning is containd in my letter to Majr. Ross —— it is therefore unnecessary for me to Repeat what I have there Said —— Should any of your letters contain any Marine news and which you find that I have not mentioned to him pray let me have it from you by return of this Ship

Timmins has called to report his Guard and finding me writing to Norfolk has desired me to present his Complements to Majr. Ross and you

God bless you

Sinceerly wishes

Jas. Campbell

To

Lt R: Clark

Marines

Norfolk Island

Clark to Campbell




  ― 305 ―

Norfolk Island

Septr. 30th. 1791

Dear Campbell

As this is best paper which Norfolk Island affords you therfore I hope will Excuse the Brownness of it —— I have Received yours containing Six letters for me and I hold myself greatly obliged to you for your kindness in forwarding them too me —— four of them are from Mrs. Clark and contain very little marine news except what you already know —— the appointments made by Major Ross by the Death of Shea were not confirmed on the Sixteen of March but it was the General Belief that they would —— I have no Accounts of the Death of Groves or Wm. Forster mentioned in yours to Major Ross —— Mrs. Ross was very well a few days prior to the date of Mrs. Clarks last letter (the 16 of March) for She informs me that She had Received a letter from her a few days before —— Mrs. C Says that Majr. Rosses Conduct is in General very much condemn only by people that have herd but one Side of the Question and then prepossessed in favour of them that the[y] Recieve Such Accounts from in this Country —— my Dear Campbell the time is drawing near I hope when peoples Eyes will be oppened respecting this country and the counduct of a certain Set in it —— Every impartial person is astonished what can be the reason that the despatchess brought home by Mr. King are not made Public —— they dont agree with the Private Accounts and Minestry dose not for that Reason wish to have them made Public I Believe —— I have nothing new to send you —— we Remain much in the Same State as when I last wrote you by the Mary Ann —— I hope that we shall Remain here untill Some of the Corns is Ripe otherwise what shall we doe to feed the Stock with —— it will not be long before Some of the Barley will be ripe for it is all in Ear and the wheat is coming in ear very fast —— in my last I informed you that Majr. Ross wished that you would get Some hay Cut fore Sea Store —— I am again desired to remind you of it —— ther is sent on Board of the Solamander 2 Broad planks of about Nine feet long each as you Said in one of your former letters to Major Ross that Timins would be glad of a board to Make a Table of —— they are directed for you and Majr. Ross Says that you may either give him them or keep them Yourself and doe with them what you please —— there is also on board under the Masters Care a Small Box Containing a Role of Tobacco —— that is all that I have got at present fit to Send you —— if we Should not be relieved by the first Ship that leaves Port Jackson for this Island after you receive this if you want any fishing lines or Hooks let me know it and I will send you some —— I See by the papers that your friend Lord Davie is Married to Mrs. Child that was —— I wish to God that you was at Home where Lord Westmoreland is Lord Lieutenant —— I am very much Mistaking if you would remain long in the marines if you was —— I think that it


  ― 306 ―
was your letter which Coll: Tallerton read in the House when the Minister was cald on to lay before the House the Accounts which he had Received by Mr. King from Govr. Phillips —— by the Accounts we have here that Gentleman has not Stuck closly to Truth a little time will Show all —— I Suppose you know that Mercer and White are both Married, the former to a Miss Slaughter and White to a widow Lady of Island —— Majr. Ross and John are very well and both Joins me in Sending you the wishes of a Sinceer friend

God Bless you

Yours Sincerly

R. Clark

NB: Considin and Faddy Send there Complements to you & be so good as to make mine in Return to Timins & my best wishes to James (I will thank you to Send the enclosed letters by the first Ship for china that leaves Port Jackson after you Receive this) once more God Bless you

   R. Clark

To

Captn. Jas. Campbell

Marines

Port Jackson

Clark to Creswell

Norfolk Island

Septr. 30th. 1791

Dr. Creswell

In the first place you must Excuse the paper as it is the best I have —— the enclose came to me in a letter from Mrs. Clark which She Received from Mrs. Cole —— by the latest letter which I have from Mrs. Clark dated the 16 of March, Mrs. Creswell was Still in London and from the last Accounts which her mother had from her She was in perfect health & was expected to return to Plymouth in the course of a day or two from that date in Companie with Mr. & Mrs. Kempster —— my letters which I have received contain very little marine news —— the Admiralty had not in March confirmed the appointments made in this Country by the Death of Shea —— they Vacancys were then not fild up —— I Suppose you know that Mercer is married to a Miss Slaughter a Sister of Colln. Slaughter and a Daughter of the late Genl.


  ― 307 ―
Slaughter —— White is also married to a Lady of Island a Widow with three children but all of them Independent the mother having herself three Hundred a Year —— Gordon, Mrs. Clark informs me was just Return from the West Indias and Should write Pouldon by the Atalantic —— we are much in the Same State as when you left use, our Crops of wheat in here and at Queensborough look Charmingly and every apparence that there will be a most plentiful Harvest —— of the Catterpillars ther has non made ther apparence yet and of the fly only two have been Seen —— I hope they have taken ther leave of the Island —— ther is near a hundred Acres of Some of the finest wheat that ever was Seen and ther will be by the latter end of the ensuing month the Same number of Acres planted with Indian corn beloning to the Public —— the Grub have destroyed a great dele of the Indian corn in and round the Vale —— the wheat is coming in Ear very fast —— a little Rain would doe a great dele of Good —— Faddy as he writes to you will give you every little Occurrance that has happend Since his last to you (Ascott) poor fellow has been Quite Reaving Mad Since the Mary Ann left this place So much So that a dark place at the end of the Gd. House is build for him where he has been obliged to be chaind to one of the Guns beloning to the Sirius and obliged to have a Strait Waiscoat kept constantly on him —— he is within these two days past a little Better and Consident has allowd him to come out and Walk under the Colonnade of the Guard in the day time —— he ust to keep crying out that he was Phillip G King Governor of this Island —— By the Mary Ann I sent you a plank according to Your desire which I hope is come safe —— if ther is any thing which I can doe or get done for you here be so good to let me know it by the first Ship and I will with pleasure &

Remain Yours

Sinceerly

Ralph Clark

Compt. to Johnston, Pouldon &c.

To

Lieut Creswell

Marines

Port Jackson

Clark's Letterbook Index




  ― 308 ―

                                                                                     


  ― 309 ―
                                                                 
Bedlake Rupd. Lieut To  250 
Beveridge Jas. Mr. From  278 
Beveridge Jas. Mr. To  282 
Collins David Esqr. To  261 
Collins Lieut Wm. To  269 
Collins Lieut Wm. Answer  276 
Collins David Esqr. To  279 
Campbell Jas. Captain From  279 
Campbell Jas. Captn. To  287 
Campbell Jas. Captn. To  292 
Campbell Jas. Captn. From  294 
Campbell Jas. Captn. To  298 
Callam James Mr. From  301 
Callam James Mr. To  302 
Campbell Jas. Captn. From  304 
Campbell Jas. Captn. To  305 
Cresswell John Lieut To  306 
Gordon: Coll:  255 
Howe Lord To S 
Howe Lord Ansr. S  243 
Hunter Capt. To S  248 
Hunter Capt. To S  249 
Hartwell B. Esqr. To  251 
Hartwell B. Esqr. To  257 
Hartwell B. Esqr. To  266 
Hartwell B. Esqr. To  271 
Hartwell B. Esqr. To  275 
Johnson Revd. Mr. To S  247 
Johnston Geoe. Captn. From  295 
Johnstone Geoe. Captn. To  296 
Kempster Lieut Ansr.  245 
Kempster Lieut To  247 
Kempster Lieut To  250 
Kempster Lieut To  251 
Kempster Lieut To  256 
Kempster Lieut To  258 
Kempster Lieut To  262 
Kempster Lieut To  272 
Kempster Lieut From  277 
Kempster Lieut To  283 
Kellow Robt. Lieut To  280 
Kellow Robt. Lieut From  281 
Kellow Robt. Lieut To S  281 
Long Lieut & Adjt. S  254 
Meredith Capt. Lieut Jas. To S  253 
Phillips Capt. To S  241 
Phillips Capt. Ansr. S  241 
Phillips Capt. To S  242 
Phillips Capt. Ansr. S  242  
Phillip Capt. To S  244 
Phillip Capt. Ansr. S  245 
Ross Major To Service  243 
Ross Major To S  255 
Ross Major To  256 
Ross Major To S  261 
Reynolds Lieut To  267 
Reynolds Lieut To  274 
Shortland Lieut To Agent Trans  246 
Shortland Lieut To Agent Trans  249 
Wolrige Thos. From  277 
Wolrige Thos. Mr. To  285 
Wolrige Thos. Mr. To  286 




  ― 310 ―

Fragment

Liberty of Recomending to your friendship my friends on Board the Cormorant sloop which I suppose is before the date of this Arrived at Jamaica —— first the Purser Mr. Copland I believe to be a Gentleman in Every Sence of the Word as such Needs no futher Recommendation —— the Master Mr. Atchinson is plainly an Honest Man one that I Believe would Sacrifice life Rather than Intentionally be Guilty of Meanness —— The Lieut. Mr. Wade I have found very Sincerly my friend and cannot Say too Much for him —— ther is also the Surgeon Mr. Jons a Genteel and Sociable person —— Conclude with my best wishes for Your Success and Welfare Safety

Your friend Unalterable &c.

Mattw. Trevan Junr.

P:S: if You see the Gents of the Cormorant present My Respetfull Compt. —— Suppose Betseys Letter will Speek particular family Occurance &c. &c.

note


  ― 310 ―

Drawing



note

A List of things which I Lost in His Majestys Ship Sirius when She was wrecks at Norfolk Island March the 19, 1790




  ― 311 ―

                                                       
£  Sh 
1 Uniform Coat  10 
2 Uniform Pr. of Breechess  15 
3 Uniform Waiscoats  15 
9 Pr. of Nankeen Breechess  14 
1 Pr. of Iaine Do.  10 
1 Pr. of Doe Skin Do.  11 
13 Pr. of Thread Stockings  19 
6 Shirts at 13Sh. a Pice  18 
6 Do. at 10Sh. a Pice  18 
11 Do. at 6Sh. a Pice 
2 Pr. of Shoes  10 
4 Pr. of Trowsers  15 
Cloath and Trimmings for a Uniform Jacket  15 
1 Mattress  12 
3 Blankets 
1 Fowling Pice 
1 Pair of Steele Mounted Pistols 
a Powder flask and Shot Smoke  10 
1 Tin Tea Kettle 
1 Large Tin Kettle 
2 Smaller dito 
2 Iron Searce Pans 
3 Tin dito 
3 Pouter Dishes 
6 Do. Plates 
all my Books  10  10 
£  47  18 

Ralph Clark Lieut Mars.

Memo. of Articles Lost in The Sirius March the 19 1790




  ― 312 ―

                     
Roberts  16 
Mrs. Keets 
Mr. Hurst  15 
Mrs. Lane  15 
Mr. Hooker 
Mr. Crus  [4?] 
Mr. Dunning  16 
Mr. Yeats 
Mrs. S Lane  [4?] 
Mr. Bucther  note 
Mr. Baker 

Clark to Betsey Alicia




  ― 313 ―

Sceptre —— Cape St. Nicola Mole

May 8/94

My Ever Dear Beloved Alicia

As I expect the packet every day to call here for our letters on her way home, I have Sit again down to write you my ever dear beloved wife a few lines and to acquaint all that my Soul most fondly doats on, that our dear and Tenderly beloved Son and myself are both in perfect good health —— I wish that I could Say that my happiness was as great as my health is good —— I assure you that it is not, for I am very much distressed on your Account my Alicia —— indeed my beloved woman it is not possible for me to describe how unhappy I am at this Instant and have been for these Some time past for fear any thing has happend to your health, or welfare my Betsey —— why my dearest will you make yourself so very unhappy and miserable as you inform me in your letters that you are on our dear beloved Boy's and my Account. but long before this time I hope that you have received the many letters that I have sent you by the Several opportunity I have had of writing you —— these I trust in god will Revive your Spirits, and dispel the unhappiness which you have Sufferd on Ralphs and my Account —— believe me my love with truth I inform you that our darling Son ever Since he has left you has enjoyd a good State of health and So has your own Clark untill about a month Since when I was taken very ill with the Flux but I am thank my God at this Instant as well as I ever was in my life and I will now inform my dearest beloved Alicia, as I am again Quite recoverd that I was about three weeks time dangerously ill and Henry Says that I have nothing to thank for my life but a good constitution and keeping up my Spirrits —— Lord Lord how terrible was then my Situation then Betsey but I am well and Soon in hopes of getting home to you which will make up for all I have Sufferd —— I wrote you two Short letters the begining of this month which was the time I was So very ill but I did not like to mention any thing about it to you then for I never had any other thoughts but that I Should get the Better —— one of the letters I sent under the care of little Froughton Master of the Powerfull and the other by the Hound Sloop of war —— within these few days I have received four letters from You my Beloved —— two of them came by the Packet one dated the 2d. of Feby. the other the 2d. of March —— one of the other two is dated the 11 of Feby. and came under the care of Lieut Wall of the Bellequieux (Mr. Roberts Friend) the other I dont know by what convayance it reached me —— it is dated the 20 of November although my Betsey of so long a date I received it with a hearty welcomb and so will your Clark every one that come from the Hand of my Alicia how ever old the date of them may be —— indeed Betsey you cannot have a greater wish than I have to see and be with you that of being with you at the time of your delivery was impossible but I trust in god long before this you have been Safely brought to bed and that you


  ― 314 ―
my Alicia in whome all my Soul most tenderly doats on is by this time quite recovered and that also our dear beloved infant is in perfect good health —— god what would I give to know but that happiness I am not able yet to know but must remain in the dreadfull Suspence for a month longer —— in my letter by the Hound I informd you that in this I would give you ane account of my illness but in recollecting as that cannot give you any pleasure I will defair it untill we meet which I trust in God will not be long —— I wrote you from Presquil by my old Acquaintance Fairfull which I hope you have received by this time —— after the date of that letter (about three days) I was taken from Presquil and sent on a command with Oldfield to a Port Cald Cote Fair 15 miles in the Country —— we left the mole about ane hour and a half after Sun Set —— our Partie consisted beside Oldfield and myself one Sergt. and 20 Private marines —— we got to the Port about one oClock in the morning where we found a Captain of the Regt. of Dillons and one Subt. of the 49 and about 24 men of the 49 and of Dillons Regt. and had been attacked the Night before by the Enemy and had lost one man kild and one wounded and expected to be every moment again attacked which would have been the case had we not arrived —— for one hour after we got there the enemy appeard but Seing that the place had been Reinforced the[y] went away again without firing a Shot —— the[y] had Same day that we left the mole taken the Port of Comp Foshnote consting of 2 Captains, 4 Subt. about 150 men —— out of that number only 26 of the 49 Regt. and Marines including McClairin being British —— Comp Fosh was only distance from use our (Port) only 2 miles and that the Enemy was in great force there —— about 12 oClock at Noon the next day Captain Walker of the Artillery came out with orders to Captain Oldfield to spike the Guns to blow up the Magazine and Burn the Barracks and to retreat to the mole as fast as we Possible could as Accounts had come in to Capt Whitelock that the Enemy were marching from Comp Fosh to cut off our communication with the mole and that if we did not make hast that our retreat would be cut off —— you may be certain soon after our getting the orders that we were not long in spiking the two Nine Pounders in blowing up the Magazine and Burning the Barracks and destroying every thing that could be of use to the Enemy and thank God we got Save in to the mole about half after five without loosing a Single man —— I was doing duty on Shore untill I was taken ill —— all the marines of the Ships and the half of the Seamen have been landed as we expected to be attacked every moment but thank God we are relieved from our fears in that head for three days Since the Irrisistable of 74 with one Regt. from Sir J: Jarvis and the Bellequieux with the Transports and Two Regt. from Irland arrived here and in the room of there attacking use we are making preparations to attack them —— we shall Sail for the attack of Port au Prince to Morrow or next day where I hope I shall get a few Pounds Prize money —— I have offerd to Buy our dear beloved Boys Prize money for that Place —— I have offerd to give him 20 Guineas for it but he will not sell it for What ever it is, it is for his dear mother —— he will every body believes get more


  ― 315 ―
than 40 Guineas for his Share as Midshipman —— I made your kindest thanks to Oldfield for his goodness to Ralph —— Since I last wrote you he Oldfield has wrote home to a Particular friend of his begging that he will be so good to apply for a Commission in the Marines for our dear Boy —— I hope the application will Succeed —— I have as yet not received any Prize money —— I dont know when I Shall —— I have received my Bord and Forrage money but my dearest love my illness has prevented me from Send you as I promised part of it for the first forthnight after I was taken ill it cost me from 2 Shilling to half a Crown a day for washing —— I dirted so many Shirts and Sheets a day —— what doe you think I paid for a pair or Shoes for our dear Sweet Boy a few days Since no less than 7Sh. and 9d. Sterling —— I forgot to mention that on my landing I was appointed Adjt. to the Naval and Marine Corps by Captain Martin of [illegible] Frigate and Since my illness McClairin has been appointed who has been exchanged —— I am to be paid for the Time I did the duty as (St. Clair) who was appointed Qr. M has received for the time he did duty —— he is gone home Since to England on Account of his health —— I am to be appointed Qr. M. at the Landing at Port au Prince as Captain Martin my old Captain in the Preston Says that if we take the place as Qr. M. I Shall make more by it than being Adjt. —— he is to command the Seamen and Marines at the Landing there —— what doe you think Oldfield did on our receiving our Bord and Forrage money —— he Said Clark you and I will put our Bord and Forrage money together and make it goe as far as we possible can to pay our expences while we are on Shore —— where my love is there one in the corps that would have done So to put his £44 to my £8—15Sh. —— there is not one —— Ralph was on Shore with me at Fort [Ferd?] —— Captain Davis did not wish him to remain I therefore Sent him on board —— his reason was very good for he Said as we expect the place to be attackd every moment and Should it be so Clark you will not be able to take care of the child and should the place be taken we in the Ship will be obliged to cut and run therefo r Ralph being on Board he will be Save which will be much better than you both being taken —— I agreed with davis and therfor Sent him on Board although it was painfull to part with him —— the moment that I was taken ill I asked to be brought on board which the Doctor Said was a very lucky thing I did —& mdash; had poor Stapleton done the Same he would have been a live now —— the Doctor Said that he was past recovery before he came off poor fellow —— he was remarkably fond of our dear Boy —— I have not been on Shore I first came off except the night of the alarm when I caught cold and was taken ill of the Flux again —— Mr. Price is master of the Irrististable he came on board the moment Ship came to ane Anchor and he is Saild again to night again for Port au Prince —— has made a great dele of Prize money he Says near £2000 —— he beg of me to desire of you to be So good when you wrote in to Cornwall either to Fanny or Mattw. to beg of them to let Mrs. Price know that he is very well —— that he has not So much as had a head ack —— I never was So much pleased with any letter in my life as the one dated the 23 of November where in you


  ― 316 ―
Say that you never loved me So much as at the moment you then was writing —— be assured my dearest Love I never will give reason to make you alter that love from me —— we have been looking every day for a Ship to arrive from Jamaica as She will bring our letters as the april Packet has been arrivd at Jamaica twelf days —— I wish to god I had my letters that She brought out for me —— I must leave room for Ralph to Sign his name otherwise you will be unhappy —— alieu now my dearest Love —— compt. to every body, m[y kin?] dred, god protect you my dear alicia and my beloved child give it ten thousand kisses for me and I will repay you ten fold on my return —— adieu my love take care of yourself and you will oblige your affectd. Husband, friend and Lover

Ralph Clark

My Dear Father has not left me any more room than to say God Bless you my Dear and best of Mothers prays your own affectioned Son

   Ralph Stuart Clark

note

home for you it contains three small Garrs two of them well preserved ginger the other mixt sweet meats —— Wynter and his son are both very well and send there compt. as does all you are acquainted with on board —— once more God Bless you my dearest Love —— Compt. to Aunt Lowndes your ever Clark sends May 22

   May 22 1794

note

poor Mrs. Clark was delivred of a dead Child herself Survived but a few hours— this was written Some days after her death—




  ― 317 ―

Sceptre

Port au Prince

June 18th. 1794

Dear Mattw.

I was in hopes long before this to have herd from you, it is now Eight months Since I firts wrote you to acquaint you that the Sceptre was to Sail for this part of the world —— in all that time not yet even a Single line from you, indeed Mattw. this is not consisting with our former Intimacy and which I Still hope Subsist —— canditly I must own I Expected before this that you would have given up ten minuits of your time, even though you had nothing New, Novel or interesting to inform me, Except that you and family were well and when you had herd from Betsey, inform Nancy that I am very much oblige to her for the Kind offer which Betsey informs me She made her, that of offering to come up to attend her at the time She Expected to be brought to Bed —— I ardently long for the arrival of last months Packet to acquaint me of Betsey Welfare —— In fact and I shall not Scruple to own to you although the Brother of my Betsey, that was She the wife of any other Mortal besides your humble Servant, I certainly Should covet him the possession of her —— You will See by the Public papers ane Account of our taken this place and the great Booty that has by it fallen into our hands but I am not So Sanguine as every body here appears to be What there amount of Prize money will come too —— it is the General belief that my Share will amount to Eight Hundred Pounds but myself I dont reckon at getting above a Quarter of that Sume for Prize money always Sounds great at first untill it comes to be Sharred —— about Six weeks agoe I was very ill ashore at Cape Nicola Mole but although three and fours of a day were dying around me I had no thought of given up the Gost —— I am now again Quite recovered and Ralph my Dear Boy has never been ill a day, you would have admired his little Spirit in the long Actions we had in this Ship against the Strong Fleet of Bessiton —— Sunday the first Inst. I could not prevail on him to Stay down in the cockpit but he would Stay up with me in the Lower Gun deck and fight the Brigans he Said —— he laid hold of the Tackels of the Guns and puld and Rould as much as his little Strengh would alow him —— when he Saw our Shot Strick the Fort and make the Stones and dust fly he ust to cry out Huzza, there is Some of the Frensh Rascals heads off —— indeed Mattw. he is a charming Boy —— you cannot conceive how doatingly fond I am of him —— he has been for this Some time back Rated Midshipman and Receives pay and Prize money a Such —— I hope that we both Shall be home by the latter end of September —— we are now very bussy in Sending our Prizes down to Jamaica for Sale —— we took 45 Ships, 36 of them are large Ships deeply loaded with Sugar, Coffy, Cotten


  ― 318 ―
and Indigo —— Ralph Joins me in best wishes to Nancy and Mary, my Compt. to Mr. & Mrs. Boke (Quarry) to Mr. & Mrs. Cole and when you See John Boke inform him that Mr. Price is Master here of the Iristible, he has made upwards of two thousand Pounds Prize money, he is very well —— tell Nancy that I will thank her to write a few lines to Betsey and inform her that you have herd from me and that Ralph and my Self are both well —— I have wrote Betsey by this convayance but for fear of its miscarriage I beg her to Send a few lines —— adieu my Dear Mattw. you will pardon me if I was hurt at not receiving a letter from you and if I have been to free consider the candour which has hither to accompanied our friendship admits not of insincerity —— If you was not the Brother of my Betsey I'd esteem respect you and wish to See you happy —— if therefore you Should be inclined to devote a Quarter of an hour to write me a few lines although I dont think I shall receive your letter here but wherever it is, it will be received with infinate Satisfaction by him who is at all times your Sinceer Brother

Ralph Clark

When You See Fanny Copeland give my Kindest wishes to her and tell my (Terrible little Rascal John) that I am looking out for his drum that I promised him

adieu

   R. Clark

Mr. Mattw. Trevan

St. Teath

Camelford

Cornwall

EDITORS' NOTE

The following pencilled list of ships appears in Clark's writing on a slip of paper in the letterbook (T indicates Transport): Alexander T, Charlotte T, Scarborough T, Borrowdale, Friendship T, Fishburn, Lady Penryn T, Golden Grove, Prince of Wales T.

     
The list is overwritten in thicker pencil  1792 
1787 
15 

followed by what appears to be London 14th, 1836

There is also a paper strip 38cm long and 39mm wide bearing a postmark of an open octagon with a crown and the letter T at the bottom left hand corner and 20d at the bottom right hand corner.




  ― 319 ―

Written by Mrs. Clark on her Husbands birth[day]

May Each Returning year in pleasure Bring
The preas[g] of his Contary and his King.
May Angels Guard his peacful home with Care
Conjugal hapiness be alwaise thair
Forgive O God the follies of his Youth
And Mold his hart in piety and truth
and when thou Calsd him to the Relms of Bliss
Oh take me too, I am but thine and his
Alicia






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