A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 11 eBook

Robert Kerr (writer)
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 783 pages of information about A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume 11.
Accordingly, on the morning of the 17th, he ordered all hands to assemble on the quarter-deck, when, addressing his discourse to those who had been detached on shore, he highly commended their gallant conduct, and thanked them for their services on that occasion.  He then represented to them the reasons that had been urged by those who continued on board, for an equal distribution of the plunder, telling them that he thought these reasons were conclusive, and that the expectations of their comrades were justly founded; and he insisted, therefore, that not only the men, but all the officers also, who had been employed in the capture of Payta, should immediately produce the whole of their plunder upon the quarter-deck, and that it should be impartially divided among the whole crew, proportionally to the rank and commission of each.  To prevent those who had been in possession of this plunder from murmuring at this decision, and the consequent diminution of their shares, he added, as an encouragement to those who might be afterwards employed on like services, that he gave up his entire share, to be distributed exclusively among those who had been detached to attack the place.  Thus this troublesome affair, which might perhaps have had mischievous consequences if permitted to go on, was soon appeased by the prudence of the commodore, to the general satisfaction of all.  Some few, indeed, whose selfish dispositions were uninfluenced by the justice of this procedure, and who were incapable of discerning the equity of the decision, were dissatisfied, as it tended to deprive them of what they had once possessed.

This important affair employed the best part of the day after leaving Payta; and at night, having seen nothing of the Gloucester, the commodore made the squadron bring to, that we might not pass her in the dark.  Next morning we again spread on the look-out, and saw a sail at 10 a.m. to which we gave chase, and which we came near enough by two p.m. to observe to be the Gloucester, having a small vessel in tow.  We joined her in about an hour after, when we learnt that Captain Mitchell had only taken two small prizes during the whole of his cruise.  One was a small snow, the cargo of which consisted chiefly of wine, brandy, and olives in jars, with about 7000l. in specie.  The other was a large boat or launch, taken near shore by the Gloucester’s barge.  The prisoners on board this boat alleged that they were very poor, and that their loading consisted only of cotton; though the circumstances under which they were surprized, seemed to insinuate that they were more opulent than they pretended; for they were found at dinner on a pigeon-pye, served up in silver dishes.  The officer who commanded the barge, having opened several of the jars in the prize, to satisfy his curiosity, found nothing as he thought but cotton, which inclined him to believe the account given by the prisoners; but when these jars were examined more strictly in the Gloucester, they were agreeably surprised to find

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