24th October 1769
Winds Westerly and fine weather. This afternoon, as soon as the Ship was moor'd, I went ashore to Examine the watering place, accompanied by Mr. Banks and Dr. Solander. I found the Water good and the Place pretty Convenient, and plenty of Wood close to high Water Mark, and the Natives to all appearance not only very friendly but ready to Traffick with us for what little they had. Early in the morning I sent Lieutenant Gore ashore to Superintend the Cutting wood and filling of Water, with a Sufficient number of men for both purposes, and all the Marines as a Guard. After breakfast I went myself, and remain'd there the whole day; but before this Mr. Green and I took several observations of the Sun and Moon. The mean result of them gave 180 degrees 47 minutes West Longitude from the Meridian of Greenwich; but as all the observations made before exceeded these, I have laid down this Coast agreeable to the means of the whole. At noon I took the Sun's Meridian Altitude with the Astronomical Quadrant, and found the Latitude 38 degrees 22 minutes 24 seconds South.
Joseph Banks Journal
This morn Dr Solander and myself went ashore botan[i]zing and found many new plants. The people behavd perfectly well, not mixing with or at all interrupting our people in what they were about but on the contrary selling them whatever they had for Otahite cloth and Glass bottles, of which they were uncommonly fond. In our walks we met with many houses in the vallies that seemd to be quite deserted, the people livd on the ridges of hills in very slight built houses or rather shedds. For what reason they have left the vallies we can only guess, maybe for air, but if so they purchase that convenience at a dear rate as all their fishing tackle and lobster potts of which they have many must be brought up with no small labour.
We saw also as extrordinary natural curiosity. In pursuing a valley bounded on each side by steep hills we on a sudden saw a most noble arch or Cavern through the face of a rock leading directly to the sea, so that through it we had not only a view of the bay and hills on the other side but an opportunity of imagining a ship or any other grand object opposite to it. It was certainly the most magnificent surprize I have ever met with, so much is pure nature superior to art in these cases: I have seen such places made by art where from an appearance totaly inland you was led through an arch 6 feet wide and 7 high to a prospect of the sea, but here was an arch 25 yards in lengh, 9 in breadth and at least 15 in hight.
In the evening we returnd to the watering place in order to go on board with our treasure of plants, birds etc. but were prevented by an old man who detaind us some time in shewing the excercise of this countrey, arms, lance and patopato as they are calld. The lance is made of hard wood from 10 to 14 feet long very sharp at the ends, the patopatoo is made of stone or bone about a foot long shapd. A stick was given him for an enemy, to this he advancd with most furious aspect brandishing his lance which he held with vast firmness; after some time he ran at the stick and supposing it a man run through the body he immediately fell upon the upper end of it, laying on most unmercifull blows with his patopatoo any one of which would probably have split most sculls; from hence I should be led to conclude that they give no quarter.
Sydney Parkinson’s Journal
The country about the bay is agreeable beyond description, and, with proper cultivation, might be rendered a kind of second Paradise. The hills are covered with beautiful flowering shrubs, intermingled with a great number of tall and stately palms, which fill the air with a most grateful fragrant perfume. We saw the tree that produces the cabbage, which ate well boiled. We also found some trees that yielded a fine transparent gum: and, between the hills, we discovered some fruitful valleys that are adapted either to cultivation or pasturage. The country abounds with different kinds of herbage fit for food; and, among such a variety of trees as are upon this land, there are, doubtless, many that produce eatable fruit. Our botanists were agreeably employed in investigating them, as well as many other lesser plants with which the country abounds. Within land there were many scandent ferns and parasaitic plants; and, on the sea shore, Salicornias, Misembrean, Mums, and a variety of Focus's. The plant, of which they make their cloth, is a sort of Hemerocallis, and the leaves yield a very strong and glossy flax, of which their garments and ropes are made.
Posted by Arborfield at 05:20