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TnE EARLY HISTORY OF NEW SOUTH

WALES.

Mr. James Bonwiok, the votoran Australian his- torian, who has been commissioned by the Now South Wales Government to make eearohos in the JJocord offico with a view to tho discovery of doou monts bearing upon the early history of the colony, has just found somo items of interest, though not important information relating to the years 178G, 1787, nnd 1788. Theso consist of sovoral journals and logs connected with tho sailing of tho first fleet to PortJaokson, kept by the masters of some of the transport ships which, accompanied Governor Phillip. They aro not tho official records of the voyage, as given by the officors of U.M. ships Sirius and Supply, but accounts from humbler pons. Soverai of the fast-sailing transport and storo ships went ahead with Governor Pnillip when ho left Onp'ain Hunter in charge of the slower vessels soon after quitting Capetown, the intention of the Com- modore beiog to gain timo to prepare for the arrival of the main body, though ho failed lo roach Botany Buy very long before the remainder of the fleot Theso logs aro not all of equal interest, and, says Mr. Bonwiok, exhibit marked differences in orthography and composition, Bomo having been kept by educatod persons, while others are tho work of almost illiterate hands. They commence at the ond of the year 1786, and aro continued to tho voyage to the Antipodos, and in some casca hack homo to London.

Tho " Golden Groves Logs; Book " begins on Sunday, Octobor 22, 178G, and Btates that the ship " carno out of Talor (Taylor) and Young's dock. Droppod down to Deptford." Tho entry for Novem- ber 8 is, " Recoivod on board 150 barrolls of flour for Botany Bay." Gravosond was reached on the 15th, and Spithead on tho 24th. On May 12, 1787, iho log states that tho Golden Groves " ro coived three empty puncheons for wator for tho chaplain; carno on boori, Raid ohnplain with his wiro and servants." On tho following day " tim Commodore mado signal for sailing; at ti weighed anchor and carno to sail in company with Sirius, Commodore Phillips, Supply, tender ; Alexander, Scaiborough, Charlotte Lady Penryn, Friend- ship, and Princo of Wales, transpoits; with tho Fishburno nnd Borrowdale, storeships. At 0, abteast of the Noeiiel Point." The fleet arrived at Tonorifi'o on June (i, and here we leam that "at 7 the agont signalled for all masters." This order onmo from Lieutenant Shortland, who desired a oonfoionoe with tho soverai captains. O11 July 17 a vossel was spoken bound from London to the Falkland Islands. Rio do Janoiio was reached on August 7, when ex changos of stores took place botweon tho transports.

At this place also a fortnight later, tho captain " re- ceived on . board 500 billets of' wood for tho use of Mr. Johnston." Wo are not informed, says Mr. Bonwiok, why the chaplain required so many billets of wood, unless ha wa3 accommodated with a privato fireplace on board the crowded ship. On reaching tho Cape on October lath they took on board 10 sheep, four goats and two hogs, for Botany Bay,' togother with a number of towels. The Hoot romained a whole month at tho Capo, and, on Novomber 10th, wo are told that the peoplo were put on tho ex- ceedingly small allowanco of three pints of water a clay for all purposes. On tho 25th " tho com- modore went on board tho Supply and parted company, and took the Alexander, Scarborough, and Friendship with him." On tho 27th. tho log reids:-"All tho abovo ships out of sight" Tho voyage, which occupied eight months, carno to an end on January 20, 1788, the entry in tho log book boing : "P.M. at 8. entrance of Botany Bay N.N.W. 5 or 6 leagues. Sigl. to come within hail to acquaint us to stand off and on all night A.M., at 12, sigl. to tack, at 4 m'ado sail. The enlranco of tho above bay north, at past 7 abreast of Point Solandor and Capo Banks. At 8 carno too in 8 fathoms, found hear the Supply and threo trans- ports who had arrivod the day before. On 27th, nt 5, ontcrod Port Jackson. At 7 carno too with small Br. in 7 fathoms." For tho 14th of the following month tho entry is, " Sailed his Majosty's brigg Supply for tho island of Now Norfolk." On the 27th we had tho grim laoonio jotting, "A man was condemned and hangod." The Supply returned on Maroh 19. On April 21 tho log states " Re- ceived an order for our pooplo to go and out wood to build huts for the womon." On May l8 tho fact is set forth that the chaplain, " Mr. Johnston, read prayers to tho ship's company." We may hopo that we are not to infer from this isolated mention of tho chaplain and prayers that this was not the solo occasion on whicíi ho performed his pastoral duties. The birthday of George III, was duly observed, üb appears from the following entry:-"Juno 4, II. ii, Bhips Sirius and Supply fired 63 suns eaoli in honour of H.M. birthday, and each transport fired five guns." August 12 was tho birthday of tho Piiuco of Wales, when the Sirius firod a saluto of 21 guns, "and the marines on shore fired three vol ays."

A gold disoovery, about whioh, says Mr. Bon wick, thoro aro conflicting accounts in colonial history, is thus referred to :-" August 28, gover- nor ordered a sentcnnl over the ship on account of some gold being found by a oonvict and sold on

board."

Ordered to Norfolk Island, tho master wrote on September 80 :-" Came on board from H.M. ship Sirius, ono corporal nnd flvo marines, with, a sergeant from tho' garrison with 21 mon convicts and 11 womon do. Three free pooplo for Nor- folk Island. Likowiso Mr. Blackburno and four seamen and Supply jollrboat to assist in landing at Norfolk Island. Recoivod 10 hogs, two goats, two geese, two turkeys for Norfo>k." The Golden Groves was accompanied by U.M. SiruiB. The diffloultios of landing at Norfolk Island aro thus reforrod to : '. October 29, sent the boat on shore, but the Hurph raising so high prevented her from getting off again."

Accompnnind hy thn FishLurn, the Golden Grovos loft Port Jackson for England, taking a course to the northward of Now Zealand. Her " logg book " says Mr. Bonwiok, in conclusion, though ohronioling far fowor facts respecting tho settlements than that of somo of the other transports, sets foith a simplo tale told by a seaman a bundled yoars ago.

Digitisation generously supported by
Vincent Fairfax Family Foundation
Digitisation generously supported by

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