The necessity of a vessel to keep up a more frequent intercourse with Norfolk Island, having been much felt by the want of various stores for the use of the inhabitants, occasioned Captain Townson, the commanding officer, to construct a small decked boat, sloop rigged, in which he sent his letters to this port, where she arrived on the 15th; but through the want of a harbour at that island, a want that must ever be felt, they were obliged to launch her from the shore, and proceed immediately to sea, whether she was sufficiently tight or not. The consequence was, that she proved very leaky; but with two pumps, which they fortunately had fitted on board her, they were able to keep the water under.*
[* A man upon the island had sufficient ingenuity to make a quadrant for navigating this vessel.]
The maize harvest on the part of government was all got in during this month; but some of the new buildings were rather retarded by the rain which fell toward the latter end of it.
Three southern whalers arrive, and an American from
the Isle of France
A transport with female convicts arrives from England
Reliance arrives from Norfolk Island
John Raynor executed
Profligacy of the female part of the settlement
The Sabbath neglected
Two whalers arrive
A native girl killed
An extraordinary custom among them
The Barwell sails for China, and the Hunter for New Zealand
The bones of two horses found
Fears for the approaching harvest
July.] The month opened with the arrival of the Cornwall, Southern whaler, the master of which brought an account, that some Spanish cruisers having appeared off Cape Horn, the whalers of the southern fishery were directed to pass into these seas during the war. This ship was directly followed by two others, the Eliza from the Cape of Good Hope, and the Sally.
This circumstance was likely to be attended with some advantages to the settlement. The whale fishing on the coast would be effectually tried, and the position of shoals, or the existence of harbours or rivers, be ascertained.
Having in a few days refitted their ships, the three whalers sailed upon their fishing voyages.
Previous to their departure, the Argo, a small American schooner, arrived, last from the Isle of France, having on board a cargo of salt provisions, some French brandy, and other articles, upon speculation; all of which was brought to a good market. From the circumstance of this ship’s coming from the Mauritius, the governor entertained some jealousy; and, as it was not impossible or improbable but that, under neutral colours, a spy might be concealed, he judged it necessary to put the battery on Point Maskelyne into a more secure and respectable state, and to construct two redoubts in proper and convenient situations.