March 1788

Saturday. 1 March. The Long boat returned from Botany Bay, the French Ships had launch'd their Boats which they had built in lieu of those destroyed at Navigators Isles & proposed sailing in a few days.

Sunday. 2nd. At day light the Governor with his Cutter, accompanied by the 1st Lieu.t of the Sirius in her Long boat & the Master in one of the Transports Long boat with a party of Marines in addition to the Boats Crews, for the purpose of examining Broken Bay victualled for 7 days, the Long boat in which the Master was, proved so very heavy & unhandy that we waited in Spring Cove 'til she came up with us & clear'd her, the Governor took the Master into his Boat & sent back that Longboat, We were met in this Cove by several of the Natives, A Woman who was fishing in a Canoe, landed with very little persuasion she was excessively Ugly & very big with child, there being many women fishing in their Canoes about the Cove, the Governor did not give any things to the Men; None of the other Women came ashore but all came alongside our Boats with their Canoes, the Men kept on the beach: the generality of this party of women were Old, ugly & ill shaped. The Governor here exchanged a Straw Hat for a spear, which when he was taking to our Boat, another of them took hold of it, on which the Man who had the Hat ran to him & explained view facsimile

that it had been exchanged, he let it go & seem pleased.

At 8. Went out of Port Jackson, when off the Harbour, the Heads of Broken Bay are within the N.o extreme of Land; the S.o Head is 15 Miles to the N.oward of the No Head of Port Jackson, round which head the Coast forms a deep bight & has a Cove or bend where a Boat may shelter from this the beach runs about 3 Miles to the N.oward to a reef of rocks which break some distance out & round which is a bight with a long sandy beach on which close round this reef of rocks a boat may land if caught upon the shore & not able to reach either of the Harbours: all round this bight the Natives appear'd on the high land, from this there did not appear to be any shelter for Boats in any of the Sandy Bays; as we passed the sandy bay next the S.o Head of Broken Bay, we were met by 3 Canoes having one Man & 5 Women in them, they came alongside of our Boats quite familiarly: The Governor push'd over to the N.o shore in the Cutter.

The tide set so strong to the S.oward, that it was with difficulty the Long boat could get round the S.o Head. As the evening closed we lost sight of the Cutter & as we approached the N.o shore of Broken Bay we made Signals by flashing of Powder & saw lights immediately after on the N.o shore to which we rowed & found to be the Natives lights, we then hauled off & fired a Musquet which was immediately answer'd & we soon saw the Cutter & at 9 at Night Moored the Boats in a Cove view facsimile

on the N.o side of the Bay off which the Surf broke violently: When the Cutter first landed, they were met by a great number of the Natives, Men, Women & Children, the Men were all armed with Spears, Clubs, Stone Hatchets & Wooden Swords, they were all very friendly & when the Long boat landed were without arms, we passed the night in this Cove on board the Boats every body.

Monday. 3rd: At day light went into the N.o branch of the Harbour which has a shoal & narrow entrance just within which we stoped, found the Natives familiar, they had several Huts here which were merely small sticks placed against each other & cover'd over with bark; In these Huts were several Women Old & young, they were much terrified at first, but soon were composed & familiar on having presents made them: they had several Cray fish about these Huts. As we proceeded up this branch after passing a very shoal flat & two or three Coves, we found set out so strong that we could not pull ahead through between two projecting points, on which we landed in a Cove adjacent; Here we were met by several Natives, Men & Women who all came freely about us. All the Women we met with in this Bay two only excepted had lost two joints of the little finger on the left hand, which custom like others we are at a loss to account for: It was supposed by some to be the pledge on the Marriage Ceremony, or on their having Children, I cannot agree in that opinion as one of the exceptions was view facsimile

an Old who had had Children & the other a young woman who had not. The others who had all been subject to this Custom were of both descriptions, Old & Young. This was not observed at Port Jackson as a custom among them but noticed in some & supposed to have been done by accident. We found most of the women had the Hole bored through the Nose the same as the Men. When the Tide had slacken'd we pushed up & found several small inlets between Mangroves, on one of which Islands we stop'd & pitch'd the Tents; had very hard rain all the morning

Tuesday. 4th. PM While the Tents & Clothes were drying, some of the Natives landed & were easily kept at a proper distance from the Clothes; A Crab was caught & proved very good.

AM. At day light proceeded up, found it to be an extensive & very shoal peice of water, too much so for the Boats to go over the flats without the risk of being left dry on the Ebb tide. We found Natives all the way up. Not being able to determine the extent of this peice of water, we returned to the Cove in which we first stoped: where we found a Straw Hat & some strings of beads which favours the opinion of their not having any fixed residence as nothing of that kind had been given them here & several were both at Port Jackson & at Botany Bay; After staying a short time here we went over to the S.o side of the Bay into the SW arm off which is an view facsimile

Island, We moored the Boats about 3 Miles up this Branch, had heavy rain, Thunder & Light'ning all night.

Wednesday. 5th AM: Followed the sw. arm up to the head found several Coves & good depth of water all the way up which I suppose to be about 7 Miles, we left two openings to the S.oward without looking into them & left this Arm without examining a large opening to the NW out of it about a mile & half above the Island: We went into the S.o Arm were caught suddenly by a thunder squall & had much difficulty in getting in:

In a Cove just within the entrance we were met by an Old Man & Boy. He had a stone in his hand which he laid down as he came towards us, he shew'd us the best landing place, brought us a stick of Fire & some Water signifying to us that the rain was very cold, we gave them fish & the Governor exchanged some things for Spears, this Man was but little scar'd about the body.

Thursday. 6. PM. Continuing to rain we secured every thing for the night, the Old Man was with us till the evening.

AM. Went up this Arm, saw several of the Natives in every Cove, the Old Man & boy followed us round to one of the Coves & shew'd us water; We stop'd in a Cove on the E.t side about 3 Miles up, several women in Canoes were fishing two of them came ashore the one an Old & Ugly, the other a young woman tall & was the handsomest woman I have seen amongst view facsimile

them, she was very big with Child, her fingers were complete as were those of the Old Woman. One of the Women made a fishing hook while we were by her, from the inside of what is commonly called the pearl oyster shell, by rubbing it down on the rocks until thin enough & then cut it circular with another, shape the hook with a sharp point rather bent in & not bearded or barbed, in this Cove we met with a kernel which they prepare & give their Children, I have seen them eat it themselves, they are a kind of nut growing in bunches somewhat like a pine top & are poisonous without being properly prepared the method of doing which we did not learn from them. Hard rain the greatest part of these 24 Hours.

Friday. 7. Were at the upper part of the S.o Arm, found in every part of it, very good depth of water except a Flat at the entrance from the Et point 2/3 of the way over, between which & the W.tern shore is a Channel with 3 f.m. at low water & that depth close to the rocks, the Land on the E.t side of this Arm is in general good & clear, on the W.t side all Rocks & thick woods.

AM Left the S.oern Arm & went again into the SW Arm to look into that opening to the NW, found but few of the Natives in it: We landed on an Island about 2 miles up this branch, on which we secured every thing for the night got a great quantity of Mullet in the Sein from which we called it Mullet Island, there is long flat to the SE & a reef view facsimile

of rocks, round which is the bay for hauling th Sein, we found some Huts on the Island, but only 3 Natives came to us this evening.

Saturday. 8. AM. Several of the Natives came to us, painted very whimsically with pipe Clay & red Ochre both which is plenty on the Island, the pipe clay just under the Sand on the beach round the rocks. We followed this branch up to the NW some distance, found openings to the N.oward & NW & on the W.t side of this opening to the NW, there appear'd to be an Island with passages round it on both sides, but we only examined that opening to the NW above Mullet Island which was found to be very shoal, that to the N.oward not having more than 6 feet water across the entrance just within the points forming it prevented our looking farther into it: About Noon having finished our superficial examination which was much hinder'd by constant heavy rains, we returned to a Cove at the Outer part of the S.o Arm to be ready to go out of the Bay.

Sunday. 9th. PM. The Old Man & Boy came to us as before, with several more of the Natives, they had many things given to them but that did not keep them from stealing, after dark the Old Man took an Iron spade & was going off with it, he was seen from the Longboat, pursued & brought back with it by one of the people on shore: The Governor chastised him for it, which so enraged him that he run off & very soon view facsimile

returned with his party all with their Spears ready to throw when a Musquet was fired which made them stop & a second Musquet drove them away for the night.

AM. At day light, the Old Man & his Companions came to us just the same as if nothing had happen'd & without Arms: About 6 O'clock we left Broken Bay & got into Spring Cove in Port Jackson at 11.

Monday. 10th. PM. Landed in a Cove above Spring Cove & in Camp Cove, in which last we saw several of the Natives who ran away all but two, those stayed on the beach & one of them shew'd us the marks on his body where he had been beat & also cut on the Shoulder by the people who landed here from two Boats, He made signs to us that the barbed spear had been jab'd several times into his shoulder: about 6. returned to the Ship.

An Emew had been shot while we were away & proved very good eating. Some of the Convicts straggling into the woods met with several of the Natives, a quarrel ensued, who were the agressors is hard to say, but the Convicts were some of them wounded & one since dead. One of the Seamen belonging to the Lady Penryhne Transport, who had been missing some days, was found in the woods by a man employed shooting for the Governor. He had been stript of all his clothes, not able to stand & scarce sensible.

Tuesday. 11th. Were informed by the Man empd to get Greens for the view facsimile

sick, that the French Ships were sailed from Botany Bay

Thursday. 13th. The Governor met the Officers on the subject of Grants of Land, they were informed that it was not in his authority to do it: peices of Ground for Gardens & for feeding their stock He allowed for present use but not as Grants of Land.

Sunday. 16th: Some of the Natives came to a place where a party of the Convicts had been left to cut rushes & finding them unarmed wanted to steal their tools, being opposed they threw their Spears at the Convicts which they very wisely picked up & broke to peices, when they had thrown all their Spears & saw them all broken to peices, they threw a few stones & ran away, one of the Convicts was wounded.

Monday. 17th: A Man employed shooting for the Governor, had been [5] days absent. He reported on his return that he had been taken a considerable distance into the Country by the Natives, that he had killed a Kanguroo which they took from him, broiled it & eat it all together.

Wednesday. 19th. The Supply arrived from Norfolk Island having left Mr King with the People & stores there & the Jolly Boat belonging to the Sirius: On their passage to Norfolk Island they discovered an Island in Latitude 31°:36′ South & Longitude 159° E.t Lieu.t Ball named it Lord Howes Island, they arrived off Norfolk Island & landed on the NE side of it the 2nd Ins.t, A surge of the Sea washed one of their view facsimile

People from a rock where he was standing & was drown'd, it was supposed he had been drawn under a shelving rock as they could not see any thing of the body. They could not find any place on this side the Island where the provisions & stores could be landed; On the 6th. they were landed on the S.o side the Island where there is a small Gully through a reef which dries at half tide that will just admit a Boat & is very dangerous when any swell is on the shore. They had much bad weather during the passage & the prevailing wind SE, they found part of the bones of a very large whale above high water mark.

Pidgeons & other Birds they found plenty upon the Island, the Supply called at Lord Howes Island on her return & got several Turtle, the soil on the Island appear'd good & there were found a great quantity of Ground Birds which were very good & easily taken.

Thursday. 20th: Captain Meridith up the Harbour met several of the Natives on the land opposite to Dawes Island, they were very familiar & had many things from him, but after he left them, droping his boat along the shore, a spear was thrown that passed near him, He levell'd his Musquet which they perceiving got behind the Trees, He fired a Ball among them on which they shouted but did not all run away. A Convict who had been out to gather Greens with another Convict return'd, having met with a party of the view facsimile

Natives who beat him severely with their throwing sticks & then let him go, the other escaped through a thick brush which the Natives don′t like to get into. An Eagle was shot measuring 7 feet from wing to wing, the feathers black & white: A very beautiful Bird was shot by one of the Officers that seem'd to partake of two species, the head & upper part of the body the Parrot, the lower part & feet that of the pigeon.

Sunday. 23. An Officer was sent to Botany Bay for the purpose of seeing if any ship was there & how the Natives were disposed: He did not see any vessel there, met a great number of Natives who were all friendly. A shark was caught this day 13 feet long & 61/2 round after his jaws were taken out they passed over the largest man in the Ship without touching, the liver gave us 26 gallons of oil, he had 4 hooks cut from within him besides that which caught him.

Monday. 24th. Lieut Dawes of the Marines, a Corporal & 8 priv.ts were lent from the Sirius to do duty on shore the Battalion being weaken'd by sickness.

Tuesday. 25th: The people employed making Bricks, were met by some of the Natives who threw stones at them & ran away. This day, the Scarborough, Lady Penryhne & Charlotte Transports were discharged being clear, these ships by contract are allowed 2 months pay from their being clear'd on account of their having a Voyage to China to perform as also an additional view facsimile

sum on the Ton to the other Transports on account of their being discharged & not kept in pay till their return to England.

Thursday. 27th: Several canoes passed down the Harbour, one of which stop'd to fish between the Ship & the shore w 2 women in her, they remained 'til near sunset but would not come to the Ship.

Saturday. 29th. Several Men, Women & Children were fishing abreast the Ship where they kept all day & landed on a point of land near us in the evening.

Sunday. 30. Natives as yesterday, on our boat going towards them they paddled to the shore & ran into the woods & came out again as soon as our boat left them, We did not interrupt them again, they staid to the 2nd April & then went two Coves higher up this party consisted of 17 Canoes with 30 people in them: Some of our Officers were on shore on at point which they passed near, one Canoe landed & had some baize given them the other Canoes all lay off; The Surgeon wounded & brought down a Crow in their sight & endeavor'd to get the Canoes to land by waving the wounded Bird to them, finding that they would not land the Surgeon threw the Bird toward to them, which having recover'd itself flew away & joined some others that were in a Tree close by, this uncommon circumstance which could not appear to them short of our having power to give & take life, astonished them so much, that they view facsimile

remained quite silent some time & then all joined in a loud exclamation of wonder.