15th September 1768
Squals of Wind from the Land, with rain the most part of these 24 Hours. Received on board fresh Beef and Greens for the Ship's Company, and sent on shore all our Casks for Wine and Water, having a Shore Boat employed for that purpose. Wind North-East to South-East.
Joseph Banks Journal
As much of the Island as we saw shewd evidently the signs of a volcano having some time or other possibly produced the whole; as we saw no one peice of stone which did not evidently shew signs of having been burnt, some very much, especialy the sand which was absolutely cinders. Indeed we did not see much of the countrey, but we were told that the whole was like the specimen we saw of it.
When you first aproach it from seaward it has a very beautifull appearance, the sides of the hills being intirely coverd with vineyards almost as high as the eye can distinguish, which make a constant appearance of verdure tho at this time nothing but the vines remaind green, the grass and herbs being intirely burnt up except near the sides of the rills of water by which the vines are waterd, and under the shade of the vines themselves; tho these very few Species of plants were in perfection the greater part being burnt up.
The people here in general seem to be as idle, or rather uninformd a set as I ever yet saw; all their instruments, even those with which their wine, the only article of trade in the Island is made, are perfectly simple and unimprovd. Their method is this: the Grapes are put into a square wooden vessel, of dimensions according to the size of the vineyard to which it belongs, into which the servants get (having taken off their stockins and Jackets) and with their feet and Elbows squeeze out as much of the Juice as they can; the stalks etc. are then collected, tyed together with a rope and put under a square peice of wood which is pressd down by a Leaver, to the other end of which is fastned a stone that may be raisd up at pleasure by a screw; by this way and this only they make their wine, and by this way probably Noah made his when he had newly planted the first vineyard after the general destruction of mankind and their arts; tho it is not impossible that he might have used a better, if he rememberd the ways he had seen us'd before the flood.
It was with great dificulty that some (and not as yet all) of them were persuaded not long ago to graft their vines and by this means bring all the fruit of a vineyard to be of one sort, tho before the vine which it producd had been spoild by different sorts of bad ones which were nevertheless sufferd to grow, and taken as much care of as the best, because they added to the quantity of the wine. Yet were they perfectly acquainted with the use of grafting, and constantly practisd it on their chestnut trees, by which means they were brought to bear sooner much than they would have done had they been allowd to remain unimprovd.
Sydney Parkinson’s Journal
A great part of the best provisions used on this island are imported from England and other parts of Europe, especially such as are eaten at dinner; from whence also they import most of their utensils and wearing-apparel; so that many of the necessaries of life bear a very high price amongst them.
While the ship lay in this harbour, we had the misfortune of losing Mr. Ware, the chief-mate, who was a very honest worthy man, and one of our best seamen. His death was occasioned by an unlucky accident which happened to him while he stood in the boat to see one of the anchors slipped. The buoy-rope happening to entangle one of his legs, he was drawn overboard and drowned before we could lend him any assistance.
Posted by Arborfield at 07:34