19 July 1770
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19 July 1770

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Joseph Banks



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in Falconer's Dictionary of the Marine
19 July 1770

Thursday 19th Gentle breezes at SE and fair weather. Employ'd geting every thing in readiness for sea —

In the AM we were viseted by 10 or 11 of the natives   the most of them came from the other side of the harbour River where we saw six or seven more the most of them women and like the men quite naked; those that came on board were very desirous of having some of our turtle and took the liberty to haul two to the gang way to put over the side but being disapointed in it ^this they grew a little troublesome, and was were for throwing every thing overboard they ^could lay their hands upon; as we had no victuals dress'd at this time I offer'd them some bread to eat, which they rejected with scorn as I believe they would have done any thing else excepting turtle - soon after this they all went a shore   Mr Banks my self and five or six more of our people being a shore at the same time, emmediatly upon their landing one of them took a handfull of dry grass and lighted it at a fire we had a shore and before we well know'd what he was going about he made a large circuit round about us and set fire to the grass on the ground in his way which ^and in an Instant burst like wild fire the whole place was in flames, luckily at this time we had hardly any thing ashore besides the forge and a sow with a Litter of young pigs one of which was scorched to death in the fire —

as soon as they had done this they all went to a place where some of our people were washing and where all our nets and a good deal of linnen were laid out to dry, here with the greatest obstinacy they again set fire to the grass which I and some others who were present could not prevent untill I was obliged to fire a musquet load with small shott at one of the rig leaders which sent them off. as we were apprised of this last attempt of theirs we got the fire out before it got head, but the first spread like wild fire ^in the woods and grass. nNotwithstanding my fireing in which one must have been a little hurt because we saw some ^a few drops of blood on some of the linnen he had cross'd gone over, they did not go far from us for we soon after heard their voices in the woods upon which Mr Banks and I and 3 or 4 More went to look for them and very soon met them comeing toward us as they had each 4 or 5 darts a piece and not knowing their intention we seized upon six or seven of the first darts we met with, this alarmed them so much that they all made off and we followd them for near half a Mile and than set down and call'd to them and they stop'd also; after some little unintelligible conversation had pass'd between us they lay down their darts and came to us in a very friendly manner   we now return'd them the darts we had taken from them which reconciled every thing. We now found  there were 4 strangers among them that we had not seen before and these were interduce'd to us by name by the others: the man which we suppos'd to have been wounded struck with small shott was gone off, but he could not be much hurt as he was at a great distance when I fired. They all came along with us abreast of the ship where they stay'd a short time and then went away and soon after set the woods on fire about a Mile and a half and two miles from us —

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© Transcription of National Library of Australia, Manuscript 1 page 267, 2004
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