Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB

1764. and bracelets, and enquired by all the signs I could December; fafe, but found it impossible to make myself understood. One of the men shewed me the bowl of a tobacco pipe, which was made of red earth, but I soon found that they had no tobacco among them; and this person made me understand that he wanted some: upon this I beckoned to my people, who remained upon the beach, drawn up as I had left them, and three or four of them ran forward, imagining that I wanted them. The Indians, who, as I had observed, kept their eyes almost continually upon them, no sooner faw some of them advance, than they all rose up with a great clamour, and were leaving the place as I supposed to get their arms, which were probably left at a little distance: to prevent mischief, therefore, and put an end to the alarm, which had thus accidentally been spread among them, I ran to meet the people who 'were in consequence of my signal comingfrom the beach,

and as soon as I was within hearing I hallowed to them, and told them that I would have only one come up with all the tobacco that he could collect from the rest. As soon as the Indians faw this, they recovered from their surprise, and every one returned to his station except a very old man, who came up to me, and sung a long song, which I much regretted my not being able to understand: before the song was well finished, Mr. Gumming came up with the tobacco, and I could not but smile at the astonishent which I faw expressed in his countenance, upon perceiving himself, though six seet two inches high, become at once a pigmy among giants; for these people may indeed more properly be called giants than tall men : of the sew among us who are sull six seet high, scarcely any are broad and muscular in proportion to their stature, but look rather like men of the common bulk, run Up accidentally to an unusual height; and a man who should measure only six seet two inches, and equally exceed a stout well-set man of the common stature in breadth and muscle, . would strike us rather as being of gigantic race, than as an individual accidentally anomalous; our senfations therefore, upon seeing five hundred people, the shortest of whom were at least four inches taller, and bulky in proportion, may be easily imagined. After I

had had presented the tobacco, four or five of the chief T764men came up to me, and, as I understood by the signs c' they made, wanted me to mount one of the horses, and go with them to their habitations, but as it would upon every account have been imprudent to comply, I made signs in return that I must go back to the ship; at this they expressed great concern, and fat down in their stations again: During our pantomimical conserence, an old man often -laid his head down upon the stones, and shutting his eyes for about half a minute, afterwards pointed first to his mouth, and then to the hills, meaning, as I imagined, that if I would stay with them till the morning, they would surnish me with some provisions, but this offer I was obliged to decline. When I left them, not one of them offered to followus, but as long as I could see them, continued to fit quietly in their places. I observed that they had with them a great number of dogs, with which I suppose they chase the wild animals which serve them for food. The horses were not large, nor in good case-, yet they appeared to be nimble and well broken. The bridle was a leathern thong, with a small piece of wood that served for a bit, and the faddles resembled the pads that are in use among the country people in England. The women rode astride, and both men and women without stirrups; yet they galloped searlessly over the spit upon which we landed, the stones of which were large, loose, and flippery.

CHAP. IV.

Pajsage up the Streight of Magellan, to Port Famine; withsome Account of that Harbour, and the adjacent Coast.

SOON after I returned on board, I got under way, and worked up the streight, which is here about nine leagues broad, with the flood, not with a view to pass through it, but in search of some place where I might get a supply of wood and water, not chusing to trust wholly to the finding of Falkland's Islands, 'which I determined afterwards to seek. About eight in the even ing, the tide of ebb beginning to make, I anchored

in

. " i

'764- in five and twenty faihom. Point Possession bore N.N. J^TM"' E. at about three miles distance, and some remarkable hummocks on the north, which Bulkcley, from their appearance, has called the Asses Ears, W.'-- N. satur. si. At three in the morning, of the 22d, we weighed with the wind at E. and steered S. W. by W. about twelve miles. During this course we went over a bank, of which no notice has hitherto been taken: at one time we had but six fathom and a half, but in two or three casts we had thirteen. When our water was shallowest, the Asses Ears bore N. W. by W. f W. distant three leagues, and the north point of the first Narrow W. by S. distant between five and six miles. We then steered S. W. by S. near six miles to the entrance of the first Narrow, and afterwards S. S. W. about six miles, which brought us through: the tide here Was so strong, that the passage was very rapid. During this course we faw a single Indian upon the south shore, who kept waving to us as long as we were in sight: we also faw some guanicoes, upon the hills, though Wood, in the account of his voyage, fays there were none upon that shore. As soon as we had passed the first Narrow, we entered a little sea, for we did not come in sight of the entrance of the second Narrow till we had run two leagues. The distance from the first to the second Narrow is about eight leagues, and the course S. W. by W. The land is very high on the north side of the second Narrow, which continues for about five leagues, and we steered through it S. W. f W. with soundings from twenty to five and twenty fathom : we went out of the west end of this Narrow about noon, and steered south about three leagues for Elizabeth's Island; but the wind then coming right against us, we anchored in seven fathom. The island bore S. S. E. distant about a mile, and Bartholomew's Island bore E. S. E. In the evening, six Indians upon the Island came down to the water side, and continued waving and hallooing to us for a long time ; but as my people wanted rest, I was unwilling to employ them in hoisting out a boat, and the Indians seeing their labour fruitless, at length went away. While we were steering from Point Possession to the first Narrow, the flood set to the southward, but as soon as we entered

the the Narrow, it set strongly over to the north shore: '764it flows here, at the sull and change of the moon, .TM" j about ten o'clock. Between the first and the second Narrow the flood sets to the S. W. and the ebb to the N. E. after the west end of the second Narrow is passed, the course, with a leading wind, is S. by E. three leagues. Between the islands of Elizabeth and Saint Bartholomew, the channel is about half a mile over, and the water is deep: we found the flood set very strongly to the southward, with a great rippling, but round the Islands the tides set many different ways.

In the morning of the 23d, we weighed with thesund. 23. wind at S. by W. and worked between Elizabeth and Bartholomew's island: before the tide was spent, we got over upon the north shore, and anchored in ten fathom. Saint George's Island then bore N. E. by N. distant three leagues; a point of land, which I called Porpois Point, N. by W. distant about five miles; and the southermost land S. by E. distant about two miles. In the evening, we weighed and steered S. by . E. about five miles along the north shore, at about one mile's distance, with regular soundings, from seven to thirteen fathom, and every where good ground. At ten o'clock at night, we anchored in thirteen fathom; Sandy Point then bearing S. by E. distant four miles; Porpois Point W. N. W. three leagues; and Saint George's Island N. E. four leagues. All along this shore the flood sets to the southward; at the sull and change of the moon, it flows about eleven o'clock, and the water rises about fifteen seet. ,

The next morning, I went out in my boat in search Mond. 24. of Fresh Water Bay; I landed with my Second Lieutenant upon Sandy Point, and having sent the boat along the more, we walked a-breast of her. Upon the Point we found plenty of wood, and very good water, and for four or five miles the shore was exceedingly pleafant. Over the Point there is a fine level country, with a foil that, to all appearance, is extremely rich; for the ground was covered with flowers of various kinds, that persumed the air with their fragrance ; and among them there were berries, almost innumerable, where the blossoms had been shed: we observed that the grass was very good, and that it was intermixed with a great

number

1764. number of peas in blossom. Among this luxuriance of ecem er. ]ierbage we fiW many hundreds of birds seeding, which, from their form, and the uncommon beauty of their plumage, we called painted geese. We walked more than twelve miles, and found great plenty of fine fresh water, but not the bay that we sought; for we faw no part of the shore, in all our walk from SandyPoint, where a boat could land without the utmost hazard, the water being every where shoal, and the sea breaking very high. We sell in with a great number of the huts or wigwams of the Indians, which appeared to have been very lately deserted, for in some of them the fires which they had kindled were scarcely extinguished; they were in little recesses of the woods, and always close to fresh water. In many places we found plenty of wild celery, and a variety of plants, which probably would be of great benefit to seamen after a long voyage. In the evening, we walked back again, and found the ships at anchor in Sandy Point Bay, at the distance of about half a mile from the shore. The keen air of this place made our people so voraciously hungry that they could have eaten three times their allowance; I was therefore very glad to find some of them employed in hauling the seine, and others on shore with their guns: sixty very large mullets were just taken with the seine, as I came up; and the gunners had good sport, for the place abounded with geese, teale, snipes, and other birds, that were excellent food. Tues. 1$. On the 25th, Christmas day, we observed by two altitudes, and found the latitude of Sandy Point to be 530 io' S. At eight in the morning, we weighed, and having failed five leagues from Sandy Point, in the direction of S. by E. i E. we anchored again in thirtytwo fathom, about a mile from the shore; the south point of Fresh Water Bay then bearing N. N. W. distant about four miles; and the southermost land S. E. by S. As we failed along the shore, at about two miles distance, we had no ground with sixty fathom; but at the distance of one mile, we had from twenty to thirty-two fathom. At the sull and change of the moon, the tide flows off Fresh Water Bay at twelve

o'clock;

« ZurückWeiter »