Narrative of a Voyage to the Northwest Coast of America in the years 1811, 1812, 1813, and 1814 or the First American Settlement on the Pacific eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 192 pages of information about Narrative of a Voyage to the Northwest Coast of America in the years 1811, 1812, 1813, and 1814 or the First American Settlement on the Pacific.

We left another man (Edward Aymes) at Wahoo.  He belonged to a boat’s crew which was sent ashore for a load of sugar canes.  By the time the boat was loaded by the natives the ebb of the tide had left her aground, and Aymes asked leave of the coxswain to take a stroll, engaging to be back for the flood.  Leave was granted him, but during his absence, the tide haying come in sufficiently to float the boat, James Thorn, the coxswain, did not wait for the young sailor, who was thus left behind.  The captain immediately missed the man, and, on being informed that he had strolled away from the boat on leave, flew into a violent passion.  Aymes soon made his appearance alongside, having hired some natives to take him on board; on perceiving him, the captain ordered him to stay in the long-boat, then lashed to the side with its load of sugar-cane.  The captain then himself got into the boat, and, taking one of the canes, beat the poor fellow most unmercifully with it; after which, not satisfied with this act of brutality, he seized his victim and threw him overboard!  Aymes, however, being an excellent swimmer, made for the nearest native canoe, of which there were, as usual, a great number around the ship.  The islanders, more humane than our captain, took in the poor fellow, who, in spite of his entreaties to be received on board, could only succeed in getting his clothes, which were thrown into the canoe.  At parting, he told Captain Thorn that he knew enough of the laws of his country, to obtain redress, should they ever meet in the territory of the American Union.

While we were getting under sail, Mr. M’Kay pointed out to the captain that there was one water-cask empty, and proposed sending it ashore to be filled, as the great number of live animals we had on board required a large quantity of fresh water.  The captain, who feared that some of the men would desert if he sent them ashore, made an observation to that effect in answer to Mr. M’Kay, who then proposed sending me on a canoe which lay alongside, to fill the cask in question:  this was agreed to by the captain, and I took the cask accordingly to the nearest spring.  Having filled it, not without some difficulty, the islanders seeking to detain me, and I perceiving that they had given me some gourds full of salt water, I was forced also to demand a double pirogue (for the canoe which had brought the empty cask, was found inadequate to carry a full one), the ship being already under full sail and gaining an offing.  As the natives would not lend a hand to procure what I wanted, I thought it necessary to have recourse to the king, and in fact did so.  For seeing the vessel so far at sea, with what I knew of the captain’s disposition, I began to fear that he had formed the plan of leaving me on the island.  My fears, nevertheless were ill-founded; the vessel made a tack toward the shore, to my great joy; and a double pirogue was furnished me, through the good offices of our young friend the French schoolmaster, to return on board with my cask.

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Narrative of a Voyage to the Northwest Coast of America in the years 1811, 1812, 1813, and 1814 or the First American Settlement on the Pacific from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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