9 October 1769
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9 October 1769

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Joseph Banks



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in Falconer's Dictionary of the Marine
9 October 1769

Monday 9th Gentle breezes and clear weather. PM stood into the Bay and anchored on the NE side before the entrance of a small river in 10 fathom water a fine sandy bottom; the NE point of the Bay bore EBS1/2S and the SW point south.  distant from the shore half a League. After this I went a shore with a party of men in the Pinnace and yawl accompaned by Mr Banks and Dr Solander. We land[ed] abreast of the Ship and on the east side of the river just mentioned.   but seeing some of the natives on the other side of the river whome I was desirous of speaking with and finding that we could not ford the river I order'd the yawl in to carry us over and the Pinnace to lay at the entrance,   In the mean time the Indians made off; however we went as far as their hutts which lay about 2 or 3 hundred yards from the water side leaving four boys to take care of the yawl, which we had no sooner left than four men came out of the woods on the other side the river and would certainly have cut ^her off the yawl had not the people in the pinnace discover'd them and called to her to drop down the stream which they did being closely pursued by the Indians; the Coxswain of the pinnace who had the charge of the Boats, seeing this fire'd two musquets over their heads, the first made them stop and look round them, but the 2d they took no notice off upon which a third was fired and killed one of them upon the spot just as he was going to dart his spear at the boat; at this the other three stood motionless for a minute or two, seemingly quite surprised wondering no doubt what it was that had thus killed their commorade: but as soon as they recover'd themselves they made off draging the dead body a little way and then left it. upon our hearing the report of the Musquets we immidiatly repair'd to the boats and after viewing the dead body we return'd on board. In the morning seeing a number of the natives at the same place where we saw them last night, I went a shore with the boats, man'd and arm'd and landed on the opposite side of the river; Mr Banks, Dr Solander, and my self at first only landed and went to the side of the river, the natives being got together on the opposite side. We call'd to them in the Georges Island Language, but they answered us by florishing their Weapons over their heads and danceing, as we suppos'd the war dance; upon this we retired untill the marines were landed which I order'd to be drawn up about 200 yards behind us. We went again to the river side having Tobiaupia, Mr Green, and Dr Munkhouse along with us. Tobiaupia spoke to them in his own language ^ and it was an [a]greeable surprise to us to find that they which they perfectly understood him. after some little conversation had pass'd one of them swam'd over to us and after him 20 or 30 more, these last brought their arms with them which the first man did not, we made them every one presents but this did not satisfy them they wanted everything we had about us particularly our arms, and made sever^al attempts to snatch them out of our hands. Tobiaupia told us several times as soon as they came over to take care of our selves for they were not our friends and this we very soon found for one of them snatched Mr Greens Hanger from him and would not give it up, this incourage'd the rest to be more insolent and seeing others comeing over to join them   I order'd the man who had taken the hanger to be fired at: which was accordingly done and he was wounded in such a manner that he died soon after; upon the first fire, which was only two musquets, the others retir'd to a rock which lay nearly in the middle of the river, but on seeing the man fall they return'd probably to carry ^him off or his arms the last of which they accomplished and this we could not prevent unless we had run our Bayonets into them for upon their returning from off the rock we had discharg'd of ^our peices which was were load with small shott and woundd three more. but these got over the river and were carried off by the others who now thought proper to retire —

Finding that nothing was to be done with the people on this side and the water in the river being salt I embarked with an intent to row round the head of the Bay in search of fresh water; and if possible to surprise some of the natives and to take them on board and by good treatment and presents endeavour to gain their friendship; with this View on —

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© Transcription of National Library of Australia, Manuscript 1 page 120, 2004
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